Holt hundred: Kelling

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 9. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.

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'Holt hundred: Kelling', in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 9, (London, 1808) pp. 403-407. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/topographical-hist-norfolk/vol9/pp403-407 [accessed 24 April 2024]

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Hugh Earl of Chester had a grant of a lordship in this village, out of which Osgot, who was lord in King Edward's time, had been ejected; there then belonged to it 3 carucates, 2 villains, 13 borderers, 4 servi, 3 carucates in demean, 4 carucates of the tenants, and an acre of meadow, &c. valued then at 40s. at the survey at 60s. was one leuca and an half long, and one broad, and paid 18d. gelt; (fn. 1) and Ralph held it under the Earl Hugh de Albini, who was a Norman lord, son of the Conqueror's sister, and had also of his gift, the manors of Shropham in Shropham hundred; Waborn in this hundred; Hedenham in Lothingland hundred; with Sithing and Wodeton; Fundenhale, Eiland, and Habeton in Depwade hundred; Kerby and Ravingham, in Clavering hundred.

Ralph also held a lordship here of Earl Hugh, who had invaded 12 freemen who were under the protection of King Harold, and lived in Waborn, Salthouse, Killing, &c. holding 3 carucates of land and 15 acres, with one villain, 25 borderers, and 7 carucates, &c. 4 acres of meadow, 7 mills, valued then at 7l. at the survey at 11l. per ann. and out of these arose two lordships. (fn. 2)

The lordship of this town extended into Salthouse, and was held by a family who took their name from it, and had the patronage of the church.

Sir Hubert de Kelling was witness to a deed, sans date, and lord also of Salthouse, where an account may be seen of that family and its descendants, and was that which Osgot was deprived of.

Ilketeshale's Manor

Was that which Harold's freemen abovementioned held, and were ejected, and the Ilketeshalls possessed it after Ralph. Sir Gilbert de Ilketeshale was lord of this manor, with that of Hedenham in Norfolk, and of Ilketeshale in Suffolk, from whence they assumed their name; and Sir Thomas was his son and heir, as appears from the register of Holm abbey, and a fine levied in the 7th of Henry III. Gilbert was son and heir of Sir Thomas, and had a charter for freewarren in Kelling, Salthouse and Hedingham, and Ilketeshale, in the 32d of that King.

Sir James de Ilketeshale was son of Gilbert, and in the 52d of the aforesaid King, mortgaged for 27 marks and an half of silver, to the Lady Sarra, prioress of the church of the Holy Cross of Bungey, lands, from the feast of the nativity of the Blessed Virgin, to the purification following, and if the money was not then paid, the nuns to have the lands for ever: witnesses, Sir Henry de Ryveshale, Sir William de Brom, &c.

In the following year, he conveyed an acre of land and the advowson of the church of St. John Baptist, of Ilketeshale, by fine, to the said priory: he married Maud, daughter of Richard de la Rokele, and was father of James de Ilketeshale, who married Aliva, daughter of Sir Thomas Weland, the judge, and released to him, his wife, and his heirs, in the 13th of Edward I. all his right in this lordship, and died about the 18th of the said reign.

Sir James, had, by Aliva his wife, a son, James, who was also a knight, and took to wife Ida, daughter and coheir of Sir Robert de Stafford, Knt. by Gundreda his wife; and Sir Robert was son of Sir William, by Ermetrude his wife, daughter and coheir of Robert, son of Walkeline, lord of Rodbourn, Moggynton, and Eggygnton, in Derbyshire.

In the 6th of Edward II. a deed was executed between Sir James de Ilketeshale on one part, and James his son, and Ida his wife, whereby James and Ida grant the manor of Kelling to Sir James, for life, and Sir James released to them 9l. per ann. out of his 15l. per ann. annuity, which they were to pay him and Aliva his wife, for the manor of Hedenham; dated at Ilketeshale, on Monday next after the feast of St. Michael. Soon after it is probable, Sir James the father died.

Sir James de Ilketeshale was lord in the 9th of Edward II. as appears from the famous record called Nomima Villarum, and was burnt in the fire of London, 1666: he and Ida his wife were living in the 15th of Edward III. Ida his wife survived him, but they both died in the 15th of Edward III. and left 2 sons, Robert and Philip.

Robert, in the said year, confirmed this manor in trust to Robert Gyn, parson of Hedenham, and sealed with or, a fess between two chevronels, gules, and a canton, ermine.

In the 28th of that King, Sir Philip de Ilketeshale remitted to Sir Robert his brother and Claricia his wife, and their heirs, all his right in this manor, by deed dated at Kelling, on Monday next after the feast of Pentecost.

Sir Robert, then living at Hedenham, confirmed this lordship and that of Hedenham, to Sir William de Kerdeston, Sir Thomas Savage, &c. in trust, by deed dated on Tuesday, in Whitsunday, in the said year.

Sir Robert died before the year 1381, when Claricia, his late wife, was the wife of Sir Robert de Morley, and she was living in the 15th of Richard II. and had dower in this lordship; by the said Claricia Sir Robert de Ilketeshale had 2 sons, and a daughter, Joan, married to William de Sharborne, Esq. to this William and Joan his wife, Sir Robert de Morley and his Lady Claricia, demised, as a portion for Joan, 100l. for 10 years, in the 5th of Richard II.

William de Ilketeshale, younger son of Sir Robert, was living in the 19th of Richard II. and released then all his right in the manors of Kelling and Hedenham, to William de la Marche, only surviving feoffee of his father, &c.; and in the said year, the said William de March confirmed them to Sir Thomas be Ilketeshale, son and heir of Sir Robert. This Sir Thomas married Isabel, daughter of — —, afterwards remarried to William Deyvile, Esq.

In the 4th of Henry IV. December 14, Sir Thomas settled this lordship, with all its rents, services, &c. and wreck at sea, on his feoffees, Thomas Astley, and John Byrston, Esq, &c. by his will, dated at Horseley, in the diocese of Winchester, in May, 1416, wherein he requires his body to be buried in the church of Horsley All-Saints, gives to Isabel his wife, this manor for life, unless his daughter should marry with the consent of her kinsfolks, then to her on her marriage; to Philip his son, an annuity of 20s. per ann. 40s. to the poor tenants of Hedenham, 20l. to build a new roof for that church; to Isabel his wife, all his goods, and wills a chaplain to pray for him in the church aforesaid for nine years; his will was proved by his wife April 17, in 1417.

It is probable that Philip his son, and also his daughter, died s. p.; in the 9th of Henry VI. William Deyvyll and the lady Isabel Ilketeshale his wife held it, and in the 18th of that King; and in the 38th of that King, the said lady and Thomas Deyvill her son were bound to Laur. Fitz Piers of Bernham-Brome, Gent. and he to them in bonds of 100l. to stand to the arbitration of John Heydon, &c. about the right of the manors of Kelling and Hedenham, by deed dated May 10. About this time there were disputes between his lady and the heirs of Sir Tho. her late husband. It appears that he had four sisters; Joan, married to William de Sharnbourn, Esq. Idonea, to - - - - - - - - - - - - - -, whose daughter and heir Margery, was wife of Laur. Fitz Piers abovementioned; Margaret married to Thomas Seive, of Worsted, and the fourth sister - - - - - - to Gilbert de Debenham.

In the 31st of the said King, John Ovy and Cecilia his wife, Will. Smith and Joan his wife, Thomas Jeffreys and Margaret his wife, the three daughters and coheirs of Margaret Seive, enfeoft John Earl of Oxford, and Sir Miles Stapleton, of their right in the fourth part of this manor; and in the 7th of Edward IV. Cecilia Ovy, Margaret Jeffreys, Joan Smith, &c. conveyed their rights to Hugh Fenn, and Henry Heydon, and in the 15th of that King, in October Hugh Fenne and John Dynn release all their right to John Heydon, and Henry Heydon, Esq. and in the 26th of Henry VIII. Isabel, widow of Sir Henry Sherbourn, and Thomas her son, released all their right to Sir John Heydon, so the whole became vested in the Heydon family, and so remained some time, Sir Christopher Heydon presenting to this church in 1603.

Mr. Lang of Baconsthorp, lord and patron in 1742, and 1745.

The Rev. Mr. Girdleston came to this estate on the decease of Mrs. Lang.—He is since dead, and his son, a minor, is the present lord and patron.

The tenths were 2l. 8s.—Deducted 12s.

There is an ancient proverb—As old as Kelling Common.

The Church is dedicated to St. Mary, the old valor was 20 marks, and paid Peter-pence 9d. the prior of Waburne had a portion valued at 20s. the present valor of this rectory.


In 1266, Sir Robert de Kelling compounded with the Bishop of Norwich, for the first-fruits of his two sons, presented to this church, and that of Salt-house.

1330, Steph de Holewell was instituted, presented by Sir Walter de Holewell, Knt.

1338, Mr. Robert de Barton.

1349, John Baxter, by John Avenel.

1351, William de Keleby, by Sir John Avenel.

1368, John de Eggefeld. Ditto.

John Godewyn occurs rector in the 45th of Edward III. and in the 2d of Richard II.

1379, John Frowyk. Ditto.

1422, William Wright, by John Wodehouse, Esq.

1428, William Trendell. Ditto.

1434, John Candeler. Ditto.

1458, William Peper, by John Heydon.

1464, Robert Awbre. Ditto.

1483, Thomas Cosyn, by Henry Heydon, Esq.

1494, Mr. Edward Bacton, S.T.P. by Sir Henry Heydon.

1521, Mr. Edmund Gerrade, S.T.B. by Sir John Heydon.

1524, Henry Devyas. Ditto.

1554, John Frost, by Sir Christopher Heydon.

1558, Hump. Wilson. Ditto.

1587, William Read, by the Queen, a lapse.

1603, Thomas Witson, by Sir Christopher Heydon.

1608, Michael Foster, by the assignees of Thomas Thetford.

Thomas Bainbrig, rector on his death in

1714, Thomas Turner, by John Lang, Gent.

1745, John Beales. Ditto.

Binham Priory Manor.

Here was also a lordship belonging to Roger, son of Renard, and held of him by Ralph, son of Hagan, out of which Wester, a freeman of Guert, (brother of King Harold) was ejected, consisting of 2 carucates of land, 6 villains and 20 borderers, 2 carucates in demean, 2 among the tenants, and an acre of meadow, &c. valued at 20s. but at the survey at 40s. (fn. 3)

Roger was also lord of Stanford, Bukenham, and Ickburgh, in Grimsho hundred;—of Inglethorp, in Smethden hundred;—of Scoulton in Weyland hundred;—of two in Altleburgh, and of Rockland in Shropham hundred;—of Mundham, in Lothingham, or Loddon hundred;—of Hateston, in Depwade hundred;—of Ravelingham, and Thurston, in Clavering hundred.

The family of Braunche had an interest herein, of which see in North Barsham. Sir Peter Braunche, son of Richard Braunche, of Gresham, conveyed to the prior of Binham, for 25 marks, in the 24th of Henry III. all his estate in Kelling and Salthouse, (fn. 4) (except a parcel of land given by him to Salthouse church) with 4s. aid per ann. which his men were used to pay him, yielding to him only the service due to the King, which was when the scutage was 2s. to pay 4s. and so when more, paying more, and when less, less; witnesses, Sir Robert de Curchun, Sir Roger de Perers, Sir Jeff. de Merston.

Sir Nicholas Braunche confirmed this grant by his deed dated at Frome in Somersetshire, in the 14th of Edward II. and sealed with a de-lis, and a lable of 5 points.

William, son of Sir Thomas de Waborne, gave them lands in Kelling and Salthouse, with Grenberew windmill, for the soul of Alice his wife, and Aldreda his mother, in the reign of Henry III.; and there was an agreement in the 21st of that King, before Robert de Lexington, William de Ebor. Adam Fitz William, and William de Culeworth, between the prior of Merton in Surrey, and William, son of Thomas de Wabrun of the services due to the prior, from William, for lands here given to Binham priory, after King Henry III. confirmed to the priory of Merton, all their liberties, which lands enjoyed the said privileges, as held of the prior of Merton, and were conveyed to the prior of Binham, by agreement made between Thomas, son of William de Wabrun, and Lady Albreda his mother, and the prior.

In the 31st of the said King, Robert, son of Sir Hubert of Kelling, gives to Binham prior half a mark rent per ann. out of Grenbergh mill, and 16 acres of land in Kelling and Salthouse. Peter Stoun, of Kelling, and Salthouse, gave rent and lands, as did Roger de Langham. This Thomas Waburn conveyed by fine, in the the 35th of Henry III. to Richard, prior of Binham, the 4th part of a fee in Kelling, and Salthouse, the prior engaging to find Thomas, for life, several pittances of meat, drink, oats, &c.

In the 14th of Edward I. this priory claimed view of frank pledge, assise of bread and beer, &c.

The priory of Waborne's messuages and lands here granted to Richard Heydon, June 20, in the 37th of Henry VIII. with the portion of the tithe of 20s. per ann.


  • 1. Terre Hugonis Comitis— In Kellinga ten. Osgot. T. R. E. iii car. t're. tnc ii vill. mo. i tnc. xiii bord. mo. xxii tnc. iiii ser. mo. vi tnc. et p. in d'nio. iii car. mo. ii tnc. et p. ho'um iiii car. mo. ii car. i ac. p'ti. sep. i r. tnc. iii an. mo. iiii tnc. xi porc. mo v tnc xl ov. mo. xviii tnc. val. xl sol. mo. lx sol. et hab. i leug. et dim. in long. et i in lat. et xvid in gelt. Idem tenet.
  • 2. Invasiones—Ranulf tenet de Hugone comite xii libos ho'es et dim. com'd. Heroldi manentes in Wabrune, in Salthus, et in Challinga, &c. ten. iii car. t're. xv ac. sep. i vill. xxv bord. tc. vii car. et mo. vi silv. xxx por. iiii ac. p'ti. vii mol. tc. val. vii lib. mo. vi.
  • 3. Terre Rogeri filij Renardi—In Kelling ten. Wester. lib. ho Guert, T. R. E. ii car. tre. mo. Radultus, fili. Hagana, sep. vi vill. et xx bor. tc. ii car. in d'nio. et p'. i mo. ii sep. houm i ac. p'ti. sep. i c. tnc. xvi p'. mo. xx sep. xl ov. et xxiiii cap. tc. val. xx sol. mo. xl.
  • 4. Reg. Binh. fol. 103, &c.