Eynford Hundred: Folsham

Pages 204-209

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.

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At the survey the Conqueror was lord; it was one of the lordships that King Edward the Confessor died possessed of, when it consisted of 12 carucates of land and 3 acres, 30 villains, 38 borderers, 40 acres of meadow; 2 carucates in demean, 18 carucates among the tenants, paunage for 400 swine, 1 mill and a church endowed with 16 acres. When the Conqueror entered on it, there was one runcus, 3 cows, &c. and 60 sheep, with 50 goats. In King Edward's time there were 30 socmen, 11 acres of land, 5 carucates with 5 acres and an half of meadow, and Walter Giffard, at the survey, had 6 of these socmen. The lordship then paid 13l. by tale, and 13 sextaries of honey, a customary duty, and 23lb. by weight and 11l. 4s. money refined, (blancas) as some; but rather quitrent, and 10s. for honey; it was one leuca long and one broad, and paid 8d. ob. to the King's gelt, and the church had 22 acres. Two freemen were added to the manor, by Ralph Talibose, in the Conqueror's time, as the hundred witnesses, with 14 acres of land, and half a carucate and an acre of pasture, valued at 4s. (fn. 1)

It remained in the Crown, as ancient demean, till King Richard I. on his return from the Holy Land, granted it to Sir Baldwin de Betun Earl of Albermarle and Holderness, with the hundred of Eynford: in 1194, he was sent by Leopald Duke of Austria, to acquaint King Richard, that if he did not perform the treaty made with him, he would kill all his hostages, (fn. 2) which obliged the King to send Alianore, daughter of Constance, Dutchess of Britain, by Geff. Plantagenet Duke of Anjou, with Baldwin, to be married to the son of Duke Leopald, but it did not take effect, by the death of that Duke.

Baldwin was brother to the Earl of Flanders, and had of the gift of King Richard many lordships in Bucks, that of Brabourn, &c. in Kent, and by his deed sans date, with the consent of Hawys his wife, granted to Robert Constable 100s. per ann. out of his lands in Holderness: his seal to this, was - - - - - - -, on a chief, - - - - -, three bendlets, - - - - - -, armed cap-a-pee on horseback, in full career, sword in hand: by Hawys his wife, daughter and heir of William le Grosse Earl of Albemarle, he had a daughter and heir, Alice, married to William Mareschal Earl of Pembroke, to whom Baldwin, with the license of King John in his 2d year, gave it in free marriage.

John le Marshall was found to die seized of it, with the advowson and hundred of Eynford, in the 6th of Edward I. and in the 15th of that King, the jury find that William, son of John le Marshal held it of the Earl of Gloucester, and honour of Clare, who held it in capite. William was under age, and claimed a weekly mercate on Tuesday, view of frank pledge, assise of bread and beer, a gallows, and that the lordship was worth 40l. per ann.

John le Mareschall, his son and heir, died lord in the 10th of Edward II. sans p. leaving Hawyse his sister and heir married to Sir Robert de Morley; in the family of the Lords Morley it remained, till Alianore, daughter and heir of William Lord Morley, brought it by marriage to William, a younger son of William Lord Lovell of Tichmarsh, who died seized of it in 1475. Henry Lovell Lord Morley, his son and heir, being slain at Dixmude in Flanders, in 1489, left no issue by Elizabeth his wife, daughter of John De la Pole Duke of Suffolk, so that it came by Alice, his sister and heir, to Sir William Parker, and was held of the honour of Clare. Edward Parker Lord Morley, his descendent, sold, September 4, 1582, this manor and hundred of Eynsford, to Sir Thomas Hunt, of the Fishmonger's Company, in. London, a great benefactor to their alms-house at Newington in Surry: by his first wife Margaret, widow of John Warner of London, was father of William Hunt, of Hilderston, Esq. who had 2 sons. Thomas, of Sharington, in Norfolk, and George, his 2d son, of Hilderston, who sold this manor to Sir Jacob Astley, Bart.

Sir Jacob Astley, Bart. was the late lord, and had the lete, and is now enjoyed by his son Sir Edward.

Swanton's Manor.

Sir Baldwin de Betun gave to Geff. de Hesseltone 60s. in land, and rent per ann. to be held by the service of the 6th part of a fee, held by Warine de Thymilthorp in the 3d of Edward I.; and in the 9th of Edward II. the heir of John de Swanton was lord of it.

In the 47th of Edward III. Robert Cursyon of Honygham granted to William Cursyoun of Berford, the manor of Swanton's, in Folsham, with a messuage toft, 120 acres of land, 8 of meadow, 18 of pasture, 4 of alderground, one of marsh, 4s. rent, with 6 hens, and 6 capons in this town, Byntre, Geyst, Sparham, &c. and a messuage and garden, called Spinkes, in St. Peter's of Manscroft, in Norwich, with the advowson of Twyford church, which he had of Thomas Cursyoun, of Byntre.

Thomas Curson, of Folsham conveyed by fine to James de Billingford, &c. this manor in the 13th of Richard II. in trust, and in the 18th of that King released to John Curson all his right herein.

Robert Bowse and Dorothy his wife, Rose Brown and Mary Brown, conveyed by fine, in the 26th of Henry VIII. this lordship, in Folsham, Twyford, Geyst, &c. to Sir Robert Townshend, who died seized of it in the 3d and 4th of Philip and Mary, and Thomas was his son and heir.

Walsingham-Priory Manor.

Sir Baldwin de Betun granted to Giles de Cotys 100s. rent, which the prior of Walsingham held of him in pure alms.

John Marshall, lord of this town, granted to the prior, for his soul's health, and that of Oliva his wife, William Earl Mareschall and Isabel his wife, and of John Mareshall, his father, and Alice, his mother, 60 acres of land, in his wood of Folsham, by the perch of 20 feet, with a way on the west towards Norton 2 perches broad, with common of pasture, and the soke of Folsham; he confirmed also the lands which Richard de Burgh of Swanton held of him, and had given them in Loch. Oliva Mareschall, by her deed and fine levied in the 35th of Henry III. gave them 12 acres, an 100s. rent here and in Byntre, with a fold course, fishery, &c.

The temporalities of this priory were valued in 1428, at 4l. 12s. 0d. per ann.

King Edward VI. on April 11, in his 4th year, granted it to Thomas Bishop of Norwich, and his successours, with a close called Little, Divillings, or Dallings, and Dove-House close.

Creke-Abbey Manor.

William Mareschall Earl of Pembroke, lord of the town, gave to Alan, de la Hythe 100s. rent of land per ann. by the service of one pound of pepper, which the abbot of Creke then held, by the same service, from whom it came to John Mareschall, who gave it to the priory of Walsingham with 3 marks and a half rent per ann. in pure alms. William de Camera had 20 acres of land also, which the abbot of Creke then held.

John de Havering and Joan his wife, granted to Geffrey, abbot of Creke, 14 marks, and 40 pence in Folsham and Byntre, by fine, in the 55th of Henry III. He was son of Richard de Havering, who settled on him and his wife, in tail, 9l. 10s. rent per ann. here, and in Havering, and Bocking in Essex. This lordship, on the Dissolution, was granted to Christ college in Cambridge, and is now held of that college.

In 1420, their temporalities were 1l. 17s. 4d.

Major General Skippon was possessed of a considerable freehold estate in this town, which descended to his son, Sir Philip, who married Amy, daughter and heir of Francis Brewster, Esq. of Wrentham in Suffolk, by whom he had a son, Philip, who died unmarried, and was buried at Edwardeston in Suffolk, in 1716; his 2d wife was Mary, daughter of Sir Thomas Barnardiston of Kediton, by whom he had a daughter, Mary, who married Joseph Brand, Esq. 2d son of Sir John Brand of Edwardeston.

Skippon bore gules, five annulets, or, Brewster, sable, a chevron, ermin, between three estoils, argent. This came after to the Athills.

The temporalities of Cokesford priory were 7s. 6d. Roger Scot, and Margaret his wife conveyed lands to John, prior, and the convent, in the 35th of Henry III.

There is an hamlet belonging to this town, called Thymblethorp, and there was an ancient family of that name, several of which were buried here.

The town, as royal demean, pleaded an exemption from toll, &c.

The tenths were 9l. 2s. Deducted 52s.

The Church is rectory, dedicated to the Holy Innocents, formerly valued at 49 marks, had a vicarage valued at 4 marks, and paid Peter-pence 8d. ob. The present valor is 27l. 14s. 9d. ob. and pays first fruits and tenths; it was built by the Lord Morley, and consists of a nave, 2 isles, and a chancel, and has a square tower with 5 tuneable bells.

On the north side of the chancel is a monument for Sir Thomas Hunt, who is in armour, and his three wives kneeling behind him;

Here lyeth interred the bodies of Sir Thomas Hunt, knight, lord and patron of this church, who died January 5, 1616, and gave 10l. for ever, towards the maintenance of the organs of this church; 53s. 4d. for ever, to the poor of Hilderston in this county; and 20l. per ann. for ever, to the poor of the worshipful company of fish-mongers of London; and 53s. 4d. for ever, to the poor of the parish of St. Dunstan in the east, London; and 53s. 4d. for ever, to the poor of Camberwell in Surry: he had 3 wives; first, Margaret, widow of John Warner of London, merchant; the 2d, Jane, widow of Thomas Grimes, Esq.; the 3d, Dame Elizabeth, widow of Sir Francis Cherry, yet living: He had by Margaret 2 sons, William Hunt of Hilderston, Esq. son and heir; and Nicholas of London, merchant, by the providence of God, deceased before him; and these arms, per pale, vert and or, a saltire counterchanged, on a canton, gules, a lion passant of the 2d, impaling, gules, on a fess, between four lis, or; - - - - - or, three barrulets, gules; argent, on a fess between four barrulets, wavy, azure, three lis of the first.

In the chancel window are the arms of Parker Lord Morley, with his quarterings; argent, a lion passant, gules, between two bars, sable, charged with three bezants, 2 and 1, and as many bucks heads caboshed in chief, of the 3d; Parker, quartering Lord Morley, and barry, nebuly, of six, or and gules, Lovell; azure, lion rampant, and seme of lis, or, Holland; gules, a bend, lozengy, or, Marshall; crest, a bear, sable, muzzled, or, supporters, two antelopes, argent, armed chained and collared, or.

Over the arch of the west door of the church, France and England quarterly, and the Lord Morley, argent, lion rampant, sable, crowned, or.

Here is a neat font of stone, with a wooden cover, which opens below, and therein are the four Evangelists painted.

In the church,

Orate p. a'i'ab; Tho. Thymbelthorp et Johanne uxor. ej. qui obt. Feb. 25, 1526.

Orate p. a'i'a. Nichi. filii et heredis Robti. Popi, gen.

In the windows vert, an escotheon, and orle of martlets, argent, Erpingham; crest, on an helmet, a chapeau, or, and a bunch of ostrich feathers issuing out of a ducal coronet, gules; cheque or and sable, a fess, argent, Thorpe, and Lord Scales.

In the churchyard is an altar monument of stone about 6 feet, &c. long, and about 3 feet high, and round this is an inscription, which for the antiquity of the letters, order, and disposition of them, has been engraven by the Society of Antiquaries, and is, Rob. art. col. les. his vif. (fn. 3) Each letter has a coronet over it. I find this Robert Colles witness to a deed of Ralph Bateman of Folsham, and Alice his wife, living in the 20th year of Henry VII.

Here was the guild of Holy Trinity. Edmund Ryx wills to be buried in this church; in 1504, gives to the new guild of Jesu, 6s. 8d. and 20l. to the repair of the church, and that "the boke of the service of the transfiguration of Christ, be bought on my coste, and whatsoever it coste, a chrismatory of silver, and one acre of land to keep his obit." (fn. 4)

Also St. Catherine's guild, the lights of St. Catherine, St. Mary, St. Nicholas. St. Peter and St. Margaret.

Here was also a famous image of St. Botolph, and I find a pilgrimage to it in 1506.


Anselm le Gross occurs rector in the 3d of Henry III. presented by William Marshall Earl of Pembroke.

In 1307, Robert de Bodekesham instituted vicar, presented by Robert de Say, rector.

1310, Philip de Wanton, rector, presented by Hawyse le Mareschall, assignee of William le Mareschall.

1321, Roger de Swathyng, rector, by Sir Robert de Morley.

1327, Bartholomew de Godelesford, by Sir Robert de Morley.

1331, Richard de Blacolvestre. Ditto.

1334, Fulco de Monpinzoun. Ditto.

In a north window of the chancel was this legend:

Fio Fulconis Montpynson lux ego donis, Nunc orare velis, maneat quod deniq; cælis.

1384, Henry Curson, by William and John Curson.

1399, William Cave, by Thomas Lord Morley.

1405, Mr. Maurit. de Caumpeden. Ditto.

1408, William Peck. Ditto.

1409, Walter Thetford. Ditto.

1412, John Birlingham. Ditto.

1413, John Pelle, by Anna Lady Morley.

1437, John Lesingham, by Isabel Lady Morley.

Thomas Wode, rector.

1481, William Lambert, by John Duke of Suffolk, on the minority of Henry Lovell Lord Morley.

1497, Mr. Michael Diacony, S. T. P. by Sir William Parker, in right of his wife, Elizabeth Lady Morley.

1494, Thomas Larke, rector, by Sir Richard Guilford, and Sir Thomas Lovell.

1515, John Wisdom, by Alice Lady Morley.

Mr. F Seymer, S. T. P. rector.

1551, Christopher Meltham, by Henry Waller, M. D. assignee of Henry Lord Morley.

1556, Charles Parker, by Henry Parker Lord Morley.

1572, John Cooke, S. T. B. by Margaret, relict of Nicholas Carr, M. D. assignee of the Lord Morley.

1585, Edward Grant, S. T. B. (fn. 5) by Thomas Hunt, Gent.

1594, Richard Hunt, rector.

1620, Henry Burton, by Stephen Burton. Philip Tenison, S. T. P. died 1660.

1660, Herbert Astley, by William Cook, trustee of Sir Jacob Astley; he was afterwards dean of Norwich, &c.

1681, Charles Spicer, alias Helder. Ditto.

1713, Henry Colman, S. T. B by Sir Jacob Astley, Bart. George Featherstonhaugh died rector 1721,—and Richard Warner was then presented by Ditto.

1722, William Selth. Ditto.

1724, John Tompson. Ditto, resigned.

1743, Henry Rice. Ditto.

Ful or Fol, gives name to many towns, as Fulham, Fouldon, Foulmere.


  • 1. Terra Regis.—Folsham tenuit E. Rex, xii car. tre. et iii ac. tc. xxx vill. p' et mo. xxx iii tc. et p' ea. xxxviii bord. mo. xliiii et XL ac. p'ti. tc. et p' ii car. in dnio. mo. iii tc. et p' xviii car. bord. mo. xx silva ad cccc. por. tc. et p' i mol. mo. ii i ecclia. xviac. qndo. recep. i r. mo. ii tc. iii an. mo. xii tc. xlvii porc. mo. l et mo. lx ov. sep. 1. cap. tpe. r. e. xxx soc. mo. xxiiii. i ac. tre. x. ac. semp. v car. et v ac. et dim. p'ti et vi de his tenet mo. Walter Gifard tnc. val. xiii lib. ad numerum, et xiii sextarios mellis, cum consuetudine, et xxiii lib. ad. pensu. mo. xi lib. et x sol. blancas, p' melle. et ht. i leu. in long. et i in lato, et reddit viiid. et obolu. in gelto regis. i eccla. xxii ac. huic manerio adjuncti sunt ii lib. hoes. p. Radulfu. Talibosc. T. R. W. hoc. testat. hundred. xiiii ac. tre. sep. dim. car. et i ac. pti. sep. val. iiii sol.
  • 2. Lolineau Hist. Bretan. v. i. p. 176.
  • 3. Robart Colles Cecily his wife.
  • 4. Reg. Rix. fol. r.
  • 5. Edward Grant was master of Westminster school, prebend of Ely, Westminster, &c.