Hundred of Henstede: Yelverton

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1806.

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'Hundred of Henstede: Yelverton', in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5, (London, 1806) pp. 489-495. British History Online [accessed 25 April 2024]

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This parish is in the liberty of the Duke of Norfolk, as a member to Framlingham manor, which hath the superiour jurisdiction over the town. (fn. 1) It belonged to Ralf Earl of Norfolk when he abjured the realm, and after to Roger Bigot. In the Confessor's time Altnoth, a Saxon, and Alured, had it under Bishop Stigand. Yelverton was then half a mile long, and four furlongs broad, and paid 10d. ob. to the geld; but it is now much larger, for the vill of Appleton, now called Alpington, (fn. 2) is joined to this town, though it was then a separate village belonging to Edwin in the Confessor's, and to Roger Bigot in the Conqueror's time, and was of more annual value than all Yelverton. Alpington, is that part lying against Yelverton-heath, and hath a constable chosen by itself, who answers its vagrant and bridge money, in the hundred of Lodne, but all other dues to Yelverton.

Loddon H. Alpington, for a six hundred pounds levy pays 5s.

It paid to each tenth, 1l. 16s. but had a deduction of 10s. for the lands of the religious in this place. It had a separate lete for it, at Framlingham court.

In 1285, Roger le Bigot Earl of Norfolk had the lete view of frankpledge, and assize of bread and ale, and freewarren in Yelverton, as a member of his manor of Framlingham, with which it hath passed to this day.

At the Conquest there was a church, and 20 acres of glebe, valued at 20d. the advowson of which, belonged to Framingham manor, but was granted off with a quarter of a fee, by the Bigods, and constituted the manor, called afterwards

Yelverton (fn. 3) or Yelverton's Manor,

In 1198, Ralf Fitz Robert, to whom it was first granted, conveyed it to Ralf Fitz Ralf and William son of Adam de Hengham, with the advowson, lands, and 8s. per annum rents. It afterwards belonged to William de Baconsthorp, and in 1235, to Will. Grimbalde; in 1328, Rob. de Baconsthorpe held it, and about 1308, Peter Bozun and Sarah his wife sold it, and in 1325, sold it with the advowson tor Sir Geffry Wyth; and in 1326, Simon, son of Adam Athyl of Narburgh, rector of Rockland Tofts, confirmed to Sir Geffry Wyth, Knt. all the services which he could have in this town, of Robert de Yelverton and his parceners, from the lands they held here, all which services he had purchased of Maud his mother Rob. son of Richard de Corston, Henry Wimer and Eleanor his wife, and Rob. son of Jeffry de Ellingham, who were the heirs of Sir Ralf at Wode of Saham; in 1349, Sir Oliver Wythe was lord and patron, and it came afterwards to

The Yelvertons. The first I find of this family, that began to purchase and raise an estate here, was Wil. Yelverton and Mabel his wife, who in 1308, purchased many lands of Rich. de la Rokele, which till then, belonged to Rokele's manor in Trowse. (fn. 4) In 1317, he purchased more lands of Roger de Walsham and Thomas de Langhale; about 1322, John de Yelverton of Rackhythe, purchased this manor and advowson of Sir Oliver Wythe; in 1445, Rob. de Yelverton his son held it of the said Oliver, and he of the Norfolk family. In 1391, John de Yelverton and Margaret his wife, had all the Yelverton's estate here, and in 1444, William Yelverton, justice of the King's Bench, owned it; and in 1462, his commission was renewed, and again in 1471. In 1499, William Yelverton, junr. Esq. son of Sir William Yelverton, Knt. the judge, had the estate, at his father's death; this William Yelverton of Rackhithe, Esq. died seized in 1518, May 3, intestate, and James Holmes administered, in right of Anne his wife, sister and heir of the deceased, and in 1551, Anne Holmes their daughter held the messuage called Yelverton manor, or Yelverton hall, and left it to William Holmes, her son and heir, and it was afterwards sold to

The Rants. The first of which family that I find mentioned, as having estates in this county was Henry Rant, who lived in 1444, from whom descended, Robert Rant of Norwich, buried in St. Stephen's church there, as in vol. iv. p. 152, as was Humfry Rant, (fn. 5) notary-publick, and Katerine his wife, who first settled at Yelverton, and died in 1609, being succeeded by William Rant, M. D. his son who married Mary, daughter of Thomas Ward of Bixley, and dying in 1627, was buried in St. Stephen's church aforesaid, leaving Humfry Rant, barrister at law, his eldest son, who married Anne, daughter of Sir Anthony Drury of Besthorp, Knt. for whom there is a handsome mural monument of white marble, with the arms of Rant, and crest of a lion sejant, and Rant and Drury impaled; the representation of a curtain drawn back, discovers this inscription.

Here under lieth interred the Bodies of Humphrey Rant, Esq. Barrister at Law, and also of Anne his Wife, he was the Eldest Son of William Rant of this Town, Dr. of Physick, and the Eldest Daughter of Sir Anthony Drury of Besthorp in the County of Norfolk, Knt. who lived together in Marriage lovingly and comfortably, for about 35 Years, in which Time were born to them, 5 Sons, and 2 Daughters, viz. William, Humfrey, who died in the sixth Year of his Age, and was here buried, Bridget, Anne, Humfrey, Anthony, and Thomas, when afterwards, having finished their Days here upon Earth, they Both departed this Life, in the Year of our Lord 1661, He Aged 64, and She 63 Years, and were here laid to rest.

On a black marble, with Rant's arms in a lozenge at each corner,

To the Memory of Anne Rant, the 2d. Daughter of Humphrey Rant Esq. and Anne his Wife, who in pious Gratitude to her said Parents, did at her own Cost and Charge, cause to be erected this adjacent Monument, and in her last Will did give 200l. to buy Lands, (fn. 6) the Profits of which, every half Year, for ever, to be equally divided, between the Minister of this Town, and the Poor of both Parishes; not only Such as take Collection, but All others who are in Want; to each person, such part and portion thereof, as in the Discretion of the said Minister, Church-wardens, and Owner of the chief House, of Her Family (being here in Town) shall seem meet and convenient; and that no poor person, who shall receive any part of this Profit, shall hereupon be abated, his or her Collection, upon pain of Forfeiture of the said Land: she died in the 66th Year of her Age, upon the 31st. of October, Ao Dom. 1698.

On another stone is this,

Here lyeth the Body of Humfrey Rant, (the eldest Son of Humfrey, and Anne his mother, she lying buried under the next adjacent stone,) he was trained up a Scholar, and took his Degree of Batchelor of Physick in Cambridge, and within a few Years after, died single and was here Interred, in the beginning of April, 1706.

Rant impales Gooch.

To the Blessed memory of Anne Rant, the second Daughter of Robert Gooch Esq; and Wife of Humfrey Rant of this Town Esq; with whom she lived 15 Years, and had Issue 4 Children, viz. Humfrey, Anne, William, and Anne, of which Anne the eldest died before her Mother. Herself was here interred March 3. 1678.

Rant impales Tirrel.

William Rant Esq. (fn. 7) (fn. 8) died March 30. 1687. aged 57. Elizabeth his Wife, eldest Daughter of James Tirrel of Mendham in Suffolk Esq. died Feb. 20. 1711. aged 70. Humphry their eldest Son died 1681. aged 23.

Letitia, Daughter of Thomas Rant Esq; and Felicia his Wife, died Apr. 9. 1714. aged 14 Years, and 9 Months.

In 1720, Thomas Rant, Esq. lived here, at whose death,

James Rant Esq. of Mendham (see p. 384,) had it, whose son, Wil. Rant of Mendham, Esq. sold it to John Platers, Esq. son of Sir John Platers of Sotterly, Bart. who now owns it, and dwells at Yelvertonhall.

The church is dedicated to St. Mary the Virgin; it stands thus in the King's Books,

10l. Yelverton rectoria. 48l. clear yearly value.

So that it is capable of augmentation, and pays no first-fruits nor tenths, but 2s. synodals, and 7s. 7d. ob. procurations to the archdeacon. When Norwich Domesday was made the rector had a house and two granges in the churchyard.


1314, William Bozoun, priest. Peter Bozoun.

1362, John, son of Agnes de Weston. In

1372, Alan de Lexham changed this with

John Cursoun, priest, for Brunstede. Barth. rector of SouthWalsham, and Ric. Doget, late vicar of Hardele, patrons.

Roger de Eton, rector of Yelverton, by his will, proved before the official of the Bishop of Norwich in 1405, ordered his body to be buried in the hospital church of St. Giles in Norwich, to which church, and that of Yelverton, he was a benefactor, and gave 20s. yearly rent to keep his anniversary in the hospital, and feed the clerks, brethren, sistern, and and sick poor, that day, and tied houses in St. Peter Mancroft for it.

In 1479, Tho. Wyoth, rector, was buried in the chancel, before the principal image of the Blessed Virgin there, which stood against the east wall, at the north side of the altar, he gave a legacy to the gild of St. John Baptist held in this church, and 20s. towards the new roof of the church.

This advowson being forfeited to the Crown, was granted by King Henry VII. to John Earl of Oxford, and his heirs male of his body, and upon failure thereof, it came to the Crown, where the patronage hath continued ever since.

1505, Henry Curle, rector. In

1560, Rob. Howse was collated by lapse. In 1583, the Queen presented

Thomas Thome, in full right. In 1584, Edw. Earl of Oxford, presented

Edmund Drury, 4th son of Rob. Drury of Besthorp, by Eliz. Clifford, his wife; he was D. D. and brother to Henry Drury, rector of Tendring; in 1603 he returned 124 communicants here, and 43 in Beeston St. Laurence, which rectory he held with this. In 1606, it was returned, that the advowson being granted under limitation, the reversion was now in the Crown, and on a quare impedit, it was determined to be so, and in 1591, the Queen presented

Joseph Dawes. In 1608, the King presented Daniel Howse, who was succeeded in 1638, by Tho. Baldwyn, and he in 1654, by Christopher Blanks, who in 1661 was instituted on the King's presentation. In

1698, Tho. Hacon had it, and was succeeded in

1733, by the Rev. Mr. Charles Wadsworth, the present rector, who holds it united to the consolidated rectory of the medieties of Howe with Poringland-Parva.

There is one acre of land given to repair the church; this town is left out of Saxton's map of the county; it paid 2l. 10s. clear to each tenth, besides 6s. from the lands of the religious here. The Abbot of Langele's temporals being valued at 26s. 4d. ob. and the chamberer's of St. Edmund's Bury at 2s. 3d. ob. qr. In 1557, John Fellowe of Norwich, Gent. gave 2 acres of ground called Thirse Meadow, with the consent of Cecily his wife and John his son, to the Dean and chapter of Norwich.

The church is 33 feet long, and 22 broad. The south isle and chapel at its east end, are 46 feet long, and 13 broad, and are both leaded; the chancel is 31 feet long, and 16 broad, and is thatched. The steeple was rebuilt in 1674, by Thomas Thetford: it is 50 feet high, and contains three bells.

On brass plates in the chancel,
Pray for the Sowle of John Sparrowe, the son of Thomas Sparrowe, on whose Sowle, Jesus have Merry.

Pray for the Sowles of Sir Rafe Seggefield, and Sir William Bursey.

On brass plates in the church,

Orate pro Anima Anne Sparrowe, cuius anime propicietur Deus.

Orate pro Anima Audrie Sparrowe, que obiitDic Januarii Ao Domini Mo VC.iiio cuius Anime propicietur Deus.

On plates in the south isle,

Prey for the Sowle of Margarete Aldriche Doughter of Tho- mas Aldriche, sumtyme Maire of Norwiche, whiche died in bit flourishing Youthe, the 1st day of Maye, in the Yer of oure Lord God, Mo VC. xxv.

Orate pro anima John Sparrowe, cuius Anime propicietur Deus.

Here lyeth buried the Body of Thomas Bleverhayset Gent. the fourthe Son of Thomas Bleverhayset of Barsham in the Countie of Sufl. Esq; whiche said Thomas departed from this Worlde. the riv day of Feb! 1590.

On a south window,


Here lyeth the Body of Mr. Gawen Corbin, merchant and Citizen of London, younger Brother of Thomas Corbin of HallEnd in the County of Warwick Esq; died 25 of February, Ao Domini, 1708, Ætatis 77.

Corbin, arg. on a chief or, three crows sab.

Nicolas Dammocke Gent. died 8 May 1617.

John Wrongrey, Oct. 9, 1704, 29. Moriendo, vive. James Wrongrey, 1616.

Elizabeth, Wife of John Wrongrey, 15 Nov. 1660. Robert Wrongrey, 23 May, 1663.

Robert Wrongrey, 13 June, 1671, 63. Margaret, his Wife, 2 March, 1668, 70.

Roger Wrongrey, 21 Dec. 1680. Anne, his Wife, 31 Dec. 1671.

In 1505, Thomas Hoott, of Yelverton, Gent. was buried in the chapel of St. John the Baptist, which he had built and founded, and in which the gild, held to the honour of that Saint, was then kept; he left a good estate to Beatrice his wife for life, called Fullers and Joys, and then to Robert his son, with remainders to his daughters, Christian, Margaret, and Anne. His brass plate is thus inscribed, Pray fot the sowle of Master Thomas Nott, and Beatric hys Dyte, and for the Sowle of Master Thomas Walberton Esquyer, late Father to the said Beatcice.

On a stone on the outside, against the south wall,

Eliz. Wife of Edward Hood, left this Life for a better, Oct. 21, 1711. Ætat. 30.

He's gone before, To ope, the Door, Of vast Eternity, To let you in, Then Free from Sin, Oh! Strive to live and dye.

His Breath is fled, And Body's Dead, And yet shall rise again, And live above, Where Angels love, Free from Disease or Pain


  • 1. Terre Regis quam Godricus servat. Heinestede Hundr. Domsd. fo. 27. In Ailvertuna, ii. liberi homines T. R. E. i. et dim. Alnoth, et dim. Aluredi commend. hos tenuit Radulfus, quando se forisfecit, post Godricus in. manu Regis, modo tenet Aitardus (c. de Vals or Vaux) homo Rogeri Bigot, medietatem unius et xv. acr. et reclamat ad feudum Episcopi Bajocensis, inter homines xxxiii. acr. terre et semper ii. bord. semper i. car. et iii. acr. prati. Terre Episcopi Bajocensis. fo. 60. In Ailvertuna i. socmannus et dim. de xvi. acr. semper arat cum duobus bovibus. This belonged to Framlingham manor. Terra Rogeri Bigoti, fo. 112. De escangio terre Isaac. In Ailvertuna iii. liberi homines eiusdem (sc. Ulketel) xx. acr. terre, semper dim. car. i. ecclesia xx. acr. val. xx. den. et tenet idem. (sc. Roger Bigot as belonging to Framingham manor.) Fo. 132. In Ailvertuna, i. liber homo Stigandi hoc tenet idem. (sc. Rogerus.) Fo. 133, In Ailvertuna, i. liber homo Stigandi cum soca commend. T. R. E. de xx. acris terre m° tenet Aitardus iii. bord. i. acr. et dim. prati semper i. car. et dim. et sub eo iii. socm. et dim. de x. acr. terre tunc et post valuit v. sol. m° xx. Ailvintuna habet iiii. quar. in longo, et iii. quar. in lato, et de gelto x. den. et obulum. hoc tenet idem. Terra Godrici dapiferi, fo. 165. In Ailvertuna ii. liberi homines Edwini de xiii, acr. et dim. tunc dim. car. m° nichil. This belonged to Framingham.
  • 2. Alpington, infra Yelverton in the liberty of the Duke of Norfolk. The part in Heinstede hundred. Appletuna tenuit Edwinus T. R. E. pro ii. car. terre, semper viii. bord. et i. ser. semper in dominio i. car. et dim. car. hominum et vi. acr. prati, silva ad xvii. porc. et iiii. vasa apum, semper i. equus et v. animal. et lx. oves et viii. porc. et viii. soc. et dim. de xl. acr. terre et 1. acr. prati, semper i. car. tunc val. xl. sol. m° iii. lib. et x. sol. The part of Alpington in Lodne hundred. fo. 115. Terra Rogeri Bigoti. In Appletona, xxx. acr. terre in dominio et i. bordar.
  • 3. Yelverton, Nomen Gent. fort. ab AS. [Culfre], columba, et [tun]. oppidum, sic dictum à copiâ columbarum in vicinia nidulantium. Est enim primariò nomen proprium pagi in agro Norf. Skinner, Etymolog.
  • 4. Framlingham Picot's manor, Trowse Rockeles, Witlingham, &c. extended hither.
  • 5. For Rant's arms, and crest, see vol. iv. p. 158, 9. There are several branches of the Rants, in Norfolk and Suffolk, but they are all originally of the same stock.
  • 6. An estate in Kirby-Caam, of 10l. a year, was purchased and settled accordingly.
  • 7. See vol. i. p. 204.
  • 8. Sc. of Yelverton, and Alpington.