Hardwicke: Local government

A History of the County of Gloucester: Volume 10, Westbury and Whitstone Hundreds. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1972.

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'Hardwicke: Local government', in A History of the County of Gloucester: Volume 10, Westbury and Whitstone Hundreds, (London, 1972) pp. 186. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/glos/vol10/p186 [accessed 12 April 2024]


Manor courts are recorded for Hardwicke manor and for Rudge and Farley. Suit of the halimote of Rudge was mentioned c. 1255; (fn. 1) a roll survives for courts at Rudge and at Farley in 1292, and there is a fragment of a roll for the court at Rudge in 1351. (fn. 2) In 1525 the lessee of Farley manor was obliged to provide for the cellarer and steward of Gloucester Abbey and their retinue in alternate years when they went to hold their court there, (fn. 3) and in 1535 the issues of Rudge and Farley included 1s. for perquisites of court. (fn. 4) In 1750 the Bishop of Gloucester was said to have a court baron for Rudge and Farley, and at the same time the lord of Hardwicke manor was said to hold a court leet. (fn. 5) Profits of the court of Hardwicke manor were mentioned in 1359. (fn. 6) The Hardwicke court leet was revived, evidently after a long lapse, c. 1830; (fn. 7) in the late 19th century the court was held at long intervals, primarily as a social function though it still exacted fines for encroachments on the waste, and it continued to be so held until after 1924. (fn. 8)

Although Hardwicke was in some ways a chapelry of Standish, by 1498 it had two churchwardens of its own, (fn. 9) and it continued to have them in the 16th century and later. (fn. 10) In the 18th century there was the usual complement of other parish officers-a constable, for whom a rate was levied in 1738, (fn. 11) two surveyors, who accounted separately in the period 1735-42, (fn. 12) and two overseers. In 1673 there was a separate constable for Field Court manor. (fn. 13) In 1701-2 the overseers relieved the poor partly by weekly allowances of 1s. or 2s. and partly by meeting particular expenses, including rent, fuel, clothes, medicine, and funerals. (fn. 14) In 1671 the parish had apprenticed a pauper child. (fn. 15) Expenditure on the poor, c. £60 a year in 1712, (fn. 16) was very little higher in 1776 but had risen to £250 by 1803. (fn. 17) The amount ten years later was higher again, (fn. 18) but in the twenties and thirties it averaged less than £200. (fn. 19) About 1825 the parish built 5 cottages on the waste of Hardwicke manor to house some of the poor; (fn. 20) two of them may have been the pair at the south end of Hardwicke Green, which according to tradition was once a village workhouse. (fn. 21) Hardwicke became part of the Wheatenhurst Poor Law Union in 1835, (fn. 22) and of the Wheatenhurst highway district in 1863. (fn. 23) With the rest of the Wheatenhurst Rural District it was transferred in 1935 to the Gloucester Rural District. (fn. 24) The parish council had as its chairman G. E. Lloyd-Baker until his death in 1924, when he was succeeded in the office by Miss Olive LloydBaker, who remained chairman in 1967. (fn. 25)


  • 1. Hist. & Cart. Mon. Glouc. (Rolls Ser.), iii. 146.
  • 2. Glos. R.O., D 936A/M 1-2.
  • 3. Glouc. Cath. Libr., Reg. Abb. Malvern, i, f. 230v.
  • 4. Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), ii. 409.
  • 5. G.D.R. vol. 381A, f. 39.
  • 6. Inq. p.m. Glos. 1359-1413, 2.
  • 7. Hardwicke Ct. Mun., Box 59 no. 17 (case for counsel).
  • 8. Ibid. no. 25; cf. Lilley, Standish, 91.
  • 9. Hockaday Abs. xxii, 1498 visit. f. 10.
  • 10. Ibid. xxix, 1543 subsidy, f. 5; lxviii, 1662 visit. f. 9.
  • 11. Glos. R.O., D 49/11/9.
  • 12. Ibid. 10.
  • 13. Ibid. Q/SO 1, f. 42.
  • 14. Ibid. D 49/11/3.
  • 15. Ibid. 6.
  • 16. Ibid. 3.
  • 17. Poor Law Abstract, 1804, 184-5.
  • 18. Ibid. 1818, 158-9.
  • 19. Poor Law Returns, H.C. 83, p. 72 (1830-1), xi; H.C. 444, p. 70 (1835), xlvii.
  • 20. Hardwicke Ct. Mun., Box 59 no. 17 (case for counsel).
  • 21. Ex inf. Miss Lloyd-Baker.
  • 22. Poor Law Com. 2nd Rep. 524.
  • 23. Lond. Gaz. 24 Mar. 1863 (p. 1709).
  • 24. Census, 1931 (pt. ii).
  • 25. Ex inf. Miss Lloyd-Baker.