An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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Called in Domesday Book, Helingetuna, as lying near the water; thus Hely, or Ely, and Helingham, or Elingham. Berner, captain of the cross-bowmen, had this lordship given him by the Conqueror, which Vlveruna, a free-woman, possessed in King Edward's time; consisting of 2 carucates of land, and 15 acres; there belonged to it 7 villains and 8 borderers, 2 servi, and 10 acres of meadow; there were 2 carucates in demean, and one amongst the tenants, a mill, and a salt pit, 100 sheep, but at the survey 80, &c. valued formerly at 4l. now at 5l. per ann. the whole was one leuca and an half long, and half a leuca broad, and paid 8d. to a 20s. gelt. (fn. 1)
Aubyn's or Albons Manor.
In the reign of King Henry II. Hugh de Burdeliz was lord of this manor, which he had by the marriage of Lauretta, daughter of Eustace Picot; after the death of the said Hugh in the 30th year of the aforesaid King, Wimer, the chaplain, then sheriff of Norfolk, answered for the profits of the manor of Hillington, late Hugh de Burdeliz, as the record declares; (fn. 2) it being in the King's hands: and in the 34th he answered for 10l. for the farm of it. The family of Burdeliz had considerable possessions at Scoulton, Grimston, &c. in this county, as in Grimston.
In the 10th of Richard II. a fine was levied between Eve, daughter of Harvis de Merlai, petent, and Ralph de Torcy, tenent, of 40 acres of land in Hillington, conveyed to Ralph, from Eve, with a mill, called Over-mill; and in the said year another fine was levied between Nicholas Crawe, and Amicia, his wife, and the aforesaid Ralph de Torcy, of 40 acres of land, and the mill of Over-mill, conveyed by Nicholas and Amicia to the said Ralph, to be held of them. (fn. 3)
In the 25th of Edward I. Robert, son of Albon, of Stamford, conveyed by fine to John, (son of Albon, of Stamford,) of Hillington and Sibill, his wife, lands and messuages here. (fn. 4)
In the 28th of that King, John Albon, or Aubyn, and Sibill his wife, had conveyed to them by a fine, from Sarah, daughter of Rich. de Merley, lands, &c. in Hillington, with the moiety of the advowson of the church. From this John Albon, the manor seems to take its name; and in the 2d of Edward III. a fine was levied between John Aubyn (fn. 5) of Hillington, and Margaret his wife, and Vincent, son of Philip of Wood-Norton, of messuages and lands here, and in Congham, with the advowson of a moiety of this church, settled on John, &c. in tail. (fn. 6)
In 1412, the family of Irmingland were lords, and presented to a moiety.
After this it came to the Lord Scales, and Elizabeth, daughter and sole heir of Thomas Lord Scales, brought it by marriage to Anthony Lord Scales, and Earl Rivers.
In the sixth year of King Edward IV. a fine was levied between Simon Baxter, and others, querents, Anthony Wydvile, Lord Scales and Elizabeth his wife, deforciants, of this manor, those of Midleton, Hale-Holme, Scales-Hoe, Barton, Reynham, Wylton, Islington and Hickling, with the advowsons of the churches of Hillington, Islington and Rydon in Norfolk; Ruenhale and Shaldeford in Essex; and those of Wyrlington and Aspale in Suffolk; (fn. 7) Newsele and Berkwey in Hertfordshire; by this fine, these manors, &c. were settled on the said Anthony and Elizabeth, and the heirs of their bodies; but the said Elizabeth dying on the 2d of September, in the 13th of Edward IV. without issue, it descended to John de Vere, Earl of Oxford, in right of Elizabeth his mother, daughter and heir of John Howard, Esq. grandson and heir to Sir Robert Howard and Margaret his wife, daughter and heir of Robert Lord Scales; (fn. 8) which John, dying without issue, was succeeded by his nephew John Vere Earl of Oxford, who left on his death in 1526, his 3 sisters, Ursula, married to Sir Edward Knightly; Dorothy, to John Nevill, Lord Latimer; and Elizabeth, to Sir Anthony Wingfield, his coheiresses.
Ursula having no issue, this lordship came to the Lords Latimers, and the Wingfields family; and soon after the lord Latimer conveyed his moiety to the Wingfields; and Sir Robert Wingfield had livery of it, about the first of Queen Elizabeth; and in the 24th of the said Queen, conveyed it to William Walpole, Esq. who had in the said year a pardon, for purchasing it without license; and was sold by the executors of the said William, to Richard Hovell, Esq. who presented to the church as lord in 1610.
In this family it continued (as the pedigree will show) many years, and on the death of Sir William Hovell, Knt. it came to his 3 daughters and coheirs, and their descendants.
Martin Folks, Esq. by the marriage of the 2d daughter and coheir, had an interest, as his son Martin had, on whose death it came to his brother.
William Folks, Esq. the present lord (as the pedigree following will shew) lives here.
Eudo, son of Spiruwin, had also a manor in this town, which Jeffrey held under him, and which Godric held under Herold, a freeman in the reign of the Confessor consisting of two carucates and 15 acres of land, 8 villains, 4 borderers, and 8 acres meadow; there were 2 carucates in demean, and one amongst the tenants, a mill, and the moiety of a salt-pit, and a freeman held 2 acres and an half, paunage for 16 swine, and 60 sheep; the whole valued at 4l. per ann. (fn. 9)
Uphall and Netherhall Manors.
Eudo, son of Spiruwin, to whom the Conqueror gave this manor, assumed the name of Tateshall, from a market town in Lincolnshire, the head of his barony or chief seat, and was held of his descendants. (fn. 10)
Geffrey de Anos (probably descended from Geffrey, who held it under Eudo, abovementioned) was lord in the reign of King John, and on the marriage of his daughter Margery, with Sir Bartholomew de Creke, son of Robert de Creke, he gave it to him; she appears to have been a very considerable heiress, and to have brought to the said Bartholomew, the manors in Helmingham and Flixton in Suffolk; as appears from a pleading at Ipswich, in the 24th of Henry III. when Robert de Pirho, William de Blund, and Robert de Bland were found to owe to Sir Bartholomew de Creke 14l. out of the aforesaid, assigned for the maintenance (p. sustentatione uxoris suæ) or jointure of his wife. (fn. 11)
On the death of Sir Bartholomew, this lordship came to his son Robert de Creke, and he dying, without issue, to Geffrey his brother and heir, and from him to John, his brother and heir, who dying also without issue, it came to Sarah, his sister, and heir, who married Roger Fitz Peter, Fitz Osbert, who was found to hold half a fee here in the 31st of Edward I. of Robert de Tateshall; this Roger held it after the death of his wife Sarah, and on his decease in the 34th of the said King, a moiety of it came to Sir John de Thorp, lord of Ashwell Thorp, as heir and cousin to Sarah, daughter of Sir Bartholomew, de Creak; and the said Sir John died seized of it.
The other moiety came to Rohesia, and Ceeilia, the daughters and coheirs of Robert de Valoins of Hickling in Norfolk, son of John Valoins and Isabella his wife, daughter of Sir Robert de Creke, sister to Sir Bartholomew, father of Sarah, aforesaid.
On this division arose the two manors of Uphall and Netherhall.
Uphall manor was that part which came to Cecilia abovementioned, who married Sir Robert de Ufford, seneschal of the house to King Edward I. Sir Edmund de Ufford, a younger son of the said Sir Robert, was lord of it in the 32d of Edward III. and in the 49th of the said King, Edmund de Ufford, chevalier, brother to Robert de Ufford Earl of Suffolk, was found to die seized of this manor, with that of Combes in Suffolk, and William Earl of Suffolk, son of Robert, was his heir, aged 36 years. This Sir Edmund de Ufford was buried (agreeably to his will, dated December 21, 1374, and proved July 6, following) in the chapel of St. Mary in the conventual church of Campsey priory in Suffolk, by his late wife; (fn. 12) and in the 13th of Richard II. Robert Boys, &c. aliened to the said priory this manor of Uphall, a feoffec (as I take it) of the late Sir Edmund, to perform the same, the whole being in him; or some of the Pakenhams family granting their part in the said manor for the said uses; the priory of Campsey being founded by Theobald de Valoins one of their ancestors, but the presentation to a moiety of the church came to the Irminglands, lords of Albon's moiety.
On the dissolution of the said priory, it was granted to John Eyre, Esq. by King Henry VIII. on February 20, in his 36th year, from whom it came to the family of Stede. William Stede, and William Playfoot held it in the 4th of Elizabeth.
William, son and heir of William, was lord of Uphall in Hillington (and it extended into Flitcham, Congham, Grimston and Rydon), in the 21st of Elizabeth, Platfoot conveying his right to Willliam Stede in the 6th of the said Queen; and William Stede his son, by his will dated April 23, 1613, bequeathed it to Thomas his son.
It was after united to the other lordship.
Netherhall manor was held in the 17th of Edward II. by Sir John de Thorp and Alice his wife, of Eve, (late wife of Robert de Tateshale,) and then the wife of Sir John de Cove, as part of her dower; and Robert de Thorp was found to be his son and heir, aged 30; and in the year 1338, John, son of Sir Robert de Thorp, was lord, and presented to a moiety of this church.
This manor of Netherhall was possessed by William Barker, Gent. of Edgfield, in Queen Elizabeth's reign, and purchased of him by Richard Hovell.
Daniel Collier, Esq. purchased and lived in a little manor here, and gave it to Dr. William Alston, rector of Gunthorp, who married his niece; and Mr. Spurgion of Anmere, recovered it by suit in Chancery, about 1762.
Another lordship in this village belonged to William Earl Warren, which two freemen were possessed of in the reign of King Edward; to this there. belonged 5 villains, 6 borderers, two servi, and 8 acres of meadow, two carucates in demean, and half a one amongst the tenants, with a mill; the Earl Warren had one carucate of the said land, and a freeman had 15 acres, and half a carucate; the whole was valued at 60s. per ann. and this was by an exchange. (fn. 13)
Daniel de Merlai and Roger de Pavilli, held considerable parts of this fee, of the Earl of Warren, about the reign of Henry III. as will afterwards appear; and in the 12th of Henry III. a fine was levied between Richard de Merlay (of the moiety of the advowson of the church of Hillington) and Bartholomew de Creke and Margery his wife, who conveyed it to Bartholomew, and the heirs of Margery.
Roger de Paveli, lord of Hillington, gave 10s. rent to Castteacre priory, viz. 5s. per ann. out of his mill, and 5s. which William, son of Robert de Ingaldesthorp held of him, for the health of the soul of Theophania his wife. (fn. 14)
In the 10th of Edward II. Sir Robert de Repps held the manor of Bury's-hall, in Hillington, valued at 3l. per ann. and 4l. 18s. 6d. q. rent in Grimston, Congham and Geyton, 104s. 3d. ob. rent in Styberd, and the advowson of Styberd, of John de Warren, Earl of Surry, and in the 2d of Edward III. it was found that it would not be to the King's, or any person's damage, if the King granted to Rob. de Repps, that he might give to John Wiclewood, capellane, 70 acres of the manor of Hillington, and 21 marks, 6s. 8d. rent in Stiberd, Grimston, Congham, and Geyton, and the advowson of Stiberd church for the use of the said Robert and Sibilla, and Laurence their son, held of John Earl Warren: and in the 12th of the said King, a fine was levied between Laurence, son of Robert de Repps and Sibil his wife, and Margaret wife of the said Laurence, querents, Robert and Sibil, deforciants, of this manor, lands in Grimston, Congham, Geyton, &c. settled on Laurence and Margaret, in tail.
After this, in the 20th of the said reign, Henry de Lucy was found to hold the 3d part of a fee here, of the Earl Warren, which the Earl held as an escheat; and in the 37th, this manor was in the hands of Sir Robert de Causton, with lands, &c. in Stiberd.
I find by the pedigree of Repps, that Laurence Repps abovementioned, had by Margaret his wife, Richard Repps, his son and heir, who left two daughters and coheirs; Catherine, married to John Marchall, and Alice, married to John Burys, but in the 9th of Richard II. this lordship was held for life, by Joan, mother (as I take it) of Catharine and Alice, and then the wife of Sir John de Herling; and in the said year the reversion and it was settled (in trust, as I take it) by fine on Richard Atte-Pitte, by John Mareshall and Katherine his wife, and by John Bures and Alice his wife; and in the 4th year of King Henry IV. John de Bures, son and heir of John de Bures, and Alice his wife, released to John Rookwood, &c. all his right in a moiety of this manor, with those of Stiberd, and North and South Repps, and Hobois Parva.
Robert Thoresby was found to die seized of it in the 15th of Henry VII. and left Henry his son, and it was then valued at 8l. per ann.
In the 38th of Henry VIII. a fine was levied between John Miller, Gent, querent, John Corbet, Gent. and Bridget his wife, deforcients, of the manor of Borough-hall, and lands in Hillington, Flitcham, and Congham.
Afterwards it was purchased of William Walpole, Esq. by Richard Hovell, and so united to the other lordships.
West Derham Manor.
Roger de Pavilly gave 40 acres of land in this town, of his demeans, to the abbey of West Derham, which Roger de Etton held with liberty of a fold, paying 20s. per ann. rent, to the said Roger, and his heirs, at 3 times in the year, which was confirmed by King John in his first year, and so was the foundation of this manor, which in 1428, was valued at 10l. per ann. and after the dissolution of that abbey, was granted, on June 27, in the 2d and 3d of Philip and Mary, to Sir Henry Bedingfeld, Knight, of Oxburgh.
William Walpole, Esq. was lord about 1580; and about the end of Queen Elizabeth's reign, possessed by Richard Hovell, Esq.
Other religious houses had also possessions here.
Lewis or Castleacre Priory.
William Earl Warren and Surry gave, in the reign of Henry II. two parts of the tithe of his fee to Castleacre priory.
Daniel de Merlai gave by deed, sans date, two garbs or parts of the tithe of his manor here, which he held of the fee of the Earl Warren, to the priory of Castleacre; (fn. 15) witnesses, Eustachius senior, Alan de Rosei, Herbert de Hillington, &c. Roger de Pavilli gave to the said priory, 10s. per ann. out of his rent here, viz. 5s. per ann. out of his mill, and 5s. which William, son of Robert de Ingaldesthorp, held of him; witnesses, William, the priest of Sculethorp, Jeffrey Capel, Roger de Trecheness, Ralph de Bellocampo, Mr. Ralph de Fuldon, Walter Kemeston, &c. and Theophania, wife of Roger, confirmed her husband's grant, sans date.
William, son of Thomas, son of Roger de Hillington, granted to John de Teynges, prior of Lewis, lord of the fee, (as he is styled,) a piece of land which Avelyn his mother, gave him, by deed sans date, witnesses, Roger de Kileby, Robert de Fransham, &c.
The temporalities of Lewis priory, or Castleacre, which was a cell to it, were valued in 1428, at 32s. per ann.
Coxford priory had considerable possessions. H prior of Coxford, and the convent, acknowledge that they are bound to pay to the monks of Castleacre, the yearly rent of 5s. which Roger de Pavilli gave to them, of the service of William, son of Roger de Ingaldesthorp, for the tenement that he held of him in Hillington; witnesses, Walter de Wanci, Roger de Frevil, Mr. Simon de Acre, Hervey de Stanehoge, Nicholas de Sidesterne, Robert de Kolekirke.
The temporalities of this prior, in 1428, were valued at 3l. 6s. 8d. per ann. See Coxford priory manor in Grimston.
I find this called the manor of Tony, and was bought by Mr. Giles Bladwell, of Mr. Bastard of Dunham, younger brother to him of Westwinch.
The temporalities of the priory of Wirmegey were valued at 4s. those of the priory of Pentney, at 2s. 7d. and those of Flitcham in 1428, at 3s. per ann.
The tenths of this village were valued at 7l. 10s. per ann. deducted 20s.
The family of Hovell is of great antiquity. Richard Hovell held of Baldwin, abbot of Bury, in the time of the Conqueror, a lordship at Wigvereston in Suffolk; and 5 freemen held lands under the said Richard. (fn. 16)
Sir John Hovell of Wratting Parva, in Suffolk, was living in 1870.
William Hovell of Rishanges in Suffolk, died in 1433, and by Beatrix his wife, daughter of Sir John Thorp, of Ashwell-Thorp, was father of Richard Hovell, who married Frances, daughter of Arthur Hopton, Esq. of Westwood in Suffolk, widow of Sir Thomas Nevill, and left William his son and heir, of Ashfield in Suffolk, who died July 7, 1534, by Elizabeth his wife, daughter of Rowland Harsike of Lopham, Esq. he was father of William Hovell of Ashfield, who married Anne, daughter of Tho. Gawdy, of Harleston, Esq. and Ann Basingborn his wife, by whom he had a son, William of Statfield hall, in Hadley, Suffolk, who took to wife, Ann, daughter of Richard Turner of Norton.
The Church is a single pile; that and the chancel are covered with tile, and has a square tower, with one bell.
On the north wall of the chancel is a mural monument, with the effigies of a gentleman in his gown, and his wife, on their knees, thus inscribed;
The monument of Richard Hovell of Hillington, in the countie of Norfolk, Esq; being of the age of 77 years and upwards, finished his course the 30th of November, 1611, in peace with God, in charity with all men, and now resteth here with expectation of the Resurrection, in assurance of eternal glorification. Margery Hovell, wife of the aforesaid Richard Hovell, Esq; deceased, and one of the daughters and heyres of John Ford, of Frating, in the countie of Essex, Esq; who having lyved vertuously and comfortably with her said husband, 44 years, did beare unto him 4 sonnes and 9 daughters, whereof there are yet twelve alive to her great comfort, being all growne to the perfect state of men and women.
On the summit is the shield of Hovell, sable, a crescent, or, impaling Ford, argent, a wolf salient, sable.
On another mural monument are the effigies of a man in armour, and his wife, kneeling at a desk, with the arms of Hovell, and Ford, quarterly, impaling, or, on a bend, vert, three bucks heads, caboshed, argent, Fernley.
At the north-east corner of the chancel is an altar tomb of marble, and iron rails before it, with the arms of Folkes, vert, a flower-de-lis, and Hovel, in an escotcheon of pretence; the crest, an arm erect, holding a spear.
Here lyes the body of Martin Folkes, late of Hillington, in the county of Norfolk, Esq; who was born the 28th day of August, 1640, and died the 17th day of February, 1705.
On a gravestone,
Lillius Hovell, filius Guli. Hovell militis, et uxoris eujs, Etheldredæ obt. 3 die Maij Ao. Domi. 1664, ætatis suæ die 24to.
Thomas, the second son of Sir Will. Hovell, and Dame Etheldreda his wife, born the last day of Febr. 1667, and died the 14th day of October, 1668.
Hic jacet corpus Gulielmi Hovell, militis, qui obt. 4 die Martij. ao. 1669, ætatis suæ 33; and the arms of Hovell.
William Posthumus, the younger son of Sir William Hovell, Knight, and Dame Etheldreda his wife, born the 8th of August, 1670, and dyed the 12th of April, 1671.
Maria conjux Johis. Novell, rectoris hujus ecclesiæ, obt. Nov. 28, 1706.
Richard Hovell, Esq; son to Sir Richard Hovell, of Hillington, died Oct. 23, in 1715, aged 70.
To this church belonged two rectors, each having a mediety; the one was called the patronage of Ralph Cyrezy, the other that of John Blome, (fn. 17) each valued at 8 marks, and paid Peter-pence, 6d. the one was in the patronage of that lordship, which Berner held at the conquest, the other in that which was held by Eudo, son of Spiruwin.
In the 35th of Henry III. William was rector of a mediety, and witness to a deed of Sir Hugh Gernegan.
1301, Adam de Werlingham, by Sir Roger Fitz-Peter Fitz-Osbert, Knt. to a mediety.
1306, John de Melles, by Sir John de Thorp, to a mediety.
1323, Peter Grimston, by the Lady Cecilia, relict of Sir Robert Ufford, to a mediety
1335, William Fitz-Thomas de Birston, by John, son of Sir Robert de Thorp, to a mediety.
1340, Hugh de Irmingland, by John Aubyn, of Hillington, and Margaret his wife, to a mediety.
1349, John de Mendham, by Robert Ufford, Earl of Suffolk, to a nediety.
1349, William Gery, by John Aubyn, to a mediety.
1352, John Lucas, by ditto.
1377, John Boveyre de Combes, William Ufford, Earl of Suffolk.
1412, William Cranmere, by William and George Irmingland.
1414, Simon Tichemarsh, on an exchange for Bawsey, by ditto.
In 1419, March 22, the two medieties were united and consolidated, the consent of the Bishop and patrons, and Tichemarsh resigned.
1420, Richard Irmingland, by Catherine Irmingland, rector of both edieties.
1440, Richard Cosin, by William Irmingland, Esq.
1455, William Hober, by the Lord Thomas de Scales.
1479, Riverus de Colonia, a monk, by Anthony Earl Rivers, Lord Scales.
1495, Patrick Kirkham, by John Earl of Oxford.
1497, John Bellamy, by ditto.
1506, William Wilson. Ditto.
1540, William Watson, by Sir Christopher Jenny, (assignee of Anthony Wingfield,) a judge of the King's Bench.
1541, Thomas Lightfote, by John Novell, of Snape, Norfolk.
1545, John Percevall, by the assignees of Lady Ursula Knightly.
1551, Thomas Armitage, by the assignees of Sir Anthony Wingfield,
1572, John Rysheton, by the assignees of John Nevill Lord Latimer.
1610, Edward Skevington, by Richard Hovell, Esq.
1627, George Robinson, by ditto.
1651, Jeremy Spilman, by ditto.
1670, Edmund Turner, by Etheldreda Hovell, widow.
1670, John May. Ditto.
1700, John Novell, by Charles Stewart, Esq.
1728, Martin Challis, by Martin Folkes, Esq. on the death of Novell.
1758, William Nelson, on Challis's death, by Sir Simon Stuart, Bart.
The present valor is 13l. 6s. 8d. and pays first fruits and tenths.
In this church was the guild of St. John.
In 1349, there was a composition made between the prior of Lewes and the rector, for the portion of tithes of the demeans of Roger de Pavely, granted by the prior to the rector, and his successours, on the payment of 13s. 4d. per ann. to Lewis priory.
I find about the year 1600, that the site of the rectory-house, with the yards, orchards, gardens, &c. contained 5 acres, and that there was of pasture and meadow, 9 acres, of arable 50 acres and a rood, and 5 acres and a rood lay in the sheep-walk.