Parishes: Heckfield

Pages 44-51

A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


In this section


Effelle (xi cent.); Hecfeld, Hegfeld, Heifeld, Heggefeld (xiii cent.); Highfield, Heghefeld, Hekfeld, Hechingfeld (xiv cent.).

Heckfield is a village and parish near the Berkshire border on the River Whitewater, 5 miles north-west from Winchfield station on the main line of the London and South Western Railway. The Roman road from London to Bath, now generally called the Devil's Highway, forms the county boundary on the north, while the River Whitewater flows through the eastern extremity of the parish, and for some distance forms the eastern boundary. The elevation varies from about 160 ft. above the ordnance datum by the Whitewater in the east to about 270 ft. above the ordnance datum in the west. The parish is intersected by main roads from Basingstoke and Odiham to Reading, which meet at West Swallowfield just outside the county boundary. The village is situated on the main road from Odiham in the south of the parish. To the west of St. Michael's Church is Highfield Park, the dowerhouse of the Stratfieldsaye estate, at present occupied by Mr. Frederick Boyd Marson. It was for some years the residence of the Hon. Gen. Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole, G.C.B., M.P., a distinguished Peninsular officer, and a personal friend of the first Duke of Wellington. Heckfield Place, the seat of Lieut.Colonel Horace Walpole, is a substantial and handsome brick building, well situated in a beautifully wooded park of about 200 acres on the banks of the Whitewater. Part of Stratfieldsaye Park, covering an area of 700 acres, occupies the north-western corner of the parish. Opposite the lodges on the border of Heckfield Heath is a monument erected to the great Duke of Wellington by his son the second duke and the tenants, labourers on the estate, and tradespeople as a token of affection and respect. The statue of the duke in the uniform of a field-marshal is over 8 ft. high and stands on a pedestal, on the granite base of which are suitable inscriptions. From the monument an avenue of Wellingtonias leads towards Stratfieldsaye House. Another seat in Heckfield is Park Corner, the property of the Duke of Wellington, which is situated in the northern extremity of the parish, on the Berkshire borders, and is the residence of Mr. John Martineau, J.P. The parish is very well wooded, woods and plantations covering an area of 862 acres in all. (fn. 1) The total area is 3,232 acres of land, of which 31 acres are land covered by water, 873¾ acres are arable land, and 926 acres permanent grass. (fn. 2) There are large stretches of common land in the north. The soil is principally light. The sub-soil is sand and gravel. The chief crops are grain in succession. Heckfield Heath and Riseley Common were inclosed by authority of the General Inclosure Acts on 28 December 1860. (fn. 3)

Mattingley, which formed part of Heckfield, was constituted a separate parish in 1894. The village is clustered round a green, and is situated in the extreme south of the parish on the main road from Odiham to Reading, about 2½ miles north from Hook Station on the main line of the London and South Western Railway. The church is in the village itself, but the vicarage is a mile north-west, close to the hamlet of Hound Green. Mattingley Lodge, to the east of Mattingley, is the property of Lieut.-Colonel Horace Walpole, and is at present let to Mr. Thomson. There is a small collection of houses at Hazeley, which is situated a mile north-east on the edge of Hazeley Heath, which covers a large area extending into the parish of Hartley Wintney. A small part of Bramshill Park is in this parish. Mattingley contains 2,622 acres of land, (fn. 4) and the River Whitewater, which bisects the parish, running from north to south, and several lakes, account for an additional 9 acres of land covered by water. The soil is principally light upon sand and gravel, with London clay as the subsoil, but in some parts the top soil is loamy and heavy. The chief crops are wheat and oats.

Among place-names occurring in early records are the following: Dainymore, Le Breche, (fn. 5) Hwarnepol (fn. 6) and La Garston Regis (fn. 7) (xiii cent.); Rychers (fn. 8) (xv cent.); Cane Meadow, (fn. 9) Harperstyle, Trolles Ende, (fn. 10) Vaulandes, (fn. 11) Le Reedes, Le Hethe Crofte, Potenalesland, (fn. 12) Rede Engge, (fn. 13) Clerkes, Harmwoods, Hell House Grove, Berryhill (fn. 14) and The Round Park (fn. 15) xvi cent.); and Iles or Eeles, Iles Meade or Eeles Meade, (fn. 16) Ganderpark, (fn. 17) Gilders or Wergs, (fn. 18) Allwardis or Aylwardis, (fn. 19) and Crowkes (fn. 20) (xvii cent.).


The manor of HECKFIELD, which had been held by Stenesnoc of Edward the Confessor as an alod, at the time of the Domesday Survey formed part of the possessions of Hugh de Port. (fn. 21) John de Port, the grandson of the Domesday holder, granted it before 1166 to Adam de St. Manefeo (fn. 22) (Sancto Manufeodo), and from this time the manor was held of the Ports and their successors the St. Johns, occurring in lists of the St. John knights' fees as late as 1349. (fn. 23) Adam de St. Manefeo was succeeded by his brother and heir Robert de St. Manefeo, who in 1208 confirmed to the Prior and convent of Merton the charter of John de Port, granting to them 1 hide of land in the parish, afterwards known as the manor of Holdshot. (fn. 24) Another Adam de St Manefeo was apparently holding the manor in 1276, (fn. 25) and in that year obtained exemption for life from being put on assizes, juries, or recognizances. (fn. 26) Henry de St. Manefeo, probably son and heir of Adam, presented to the church between 1282 and 1304, (fn. 27) and was succeeded before 1316 by John de St. Manefeo, (fn. 28) verderer for the forest of Pamber, who died circa 1320. (fn. 29) The latter was followed by Robert de St. Manefeo, who in 1328 obtained a grant of free warren in his demesne of Heckfield, as also licence to inclose 5 acres of meadow, 15 acres of pasture, 40 acres of wood, and 30 acres of moor in his manor for a park. (fn. 30) Robert presented a rector during the episcopacy of Adam Orlton (1333–45), (fn. 31) but about the same time Sir Thomas de St. Leger and Elizabeth his wife claimed the manor from him, (fn. 32) and he accordingly, alleging that he was about to set out on the service of the king to foreign parts, obtained letters acquitting him from pleas and suits. (fn. 33) It was discovered, however, that this was only a pretext to prorogue the suit of those who were suing for their rights, and in 1339 Edward III ordered the justices to proceed in the case and to cause justice to be done to the parties notwithstanding the letters of protection. (fn. 34) Sir Thomas de St. Leger and Elizabeth were successful in gaining possession of the manor, and let it at farm to William of Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester, (fn. 35) but the St. Manefeos subsequently recovered it, John de St. Manefeo, son and heir of Thomas de St. Manefeo, quitclaiming all right in it to Robert Fulmere and others in 1381. (fn. 36) In 1395 the manor was settled on Edward Bokeland and Amice his wife (fn. 37) and the issue of Amice, with contingent remainder to Sir Philip la Vache and his issue, with contingent remainder to the right heirs of Amice. (fn. 38) Edward Bokeland was still holding Heckfield in 1404, (fn. 39) but the fact that in 1405 seisin of the manor was granted to Sir Philip la Vache (fn. 40) shows that he had died within the year, and that Amice had left no children. Sir Philip la Vache, who in 1403 'in consideration of his old age and debility' had been exempted from being put on assizes, juries, &c., from being made mayor, sheriff, &c., and from going to any parts of the realm by reason of his various offices, (fn. 41) died about five years later, (fn. 42) and as he left no issue Heckfield apparently passed to the right heirs of Amice. Who these were is uncertain, but in 1451 the manor was in the possession of Elizabeth wife of Thomas Norton, who in that year dealt with it by fine in conjunction with her husband. (fn. 43) William Cresswell, 'first lord of the manor of that name,' died seised of Heckfield in 1475, and was succeeded by John Cresswell, (fn. 44) who died in 1518, leaving as his heir his son Thomas. (fn. 45) On the death of Thomas in 1533 the manor passed to Richard Cresswell, who died seven years later. (fn. 46) Thomas Cresswell son and heir of Richard settled Heckfield upon himself and his wife Jane in 1596, and died seised in 1607, leaving a son and heir Thomas, (fn. 47) who dealt with the manor by recovery in 1651. (fn. 48) It next passed by sale to the Sturt family, the purchaser probably being Anthony Sturt, who, according to Le Neve, was 'a meal man first, after a commissioner of excise, fined for Alderman of London, gott a great estate and had a grant of arms 19 October 1691.' (fn. 49) Sir Anthony Sturt son of Anthony, sheriff of Hampshire in 1694, (fn. 50) dealt with the manor by fine on the occasion of the marriage of his son and heir Humphrey with Diana daughter of Sir Nathaniel Napier, bart., (fn. 51) in 1717. (fn. 52) On the death of Humphrey Sturt in 1740 the manor passed to his son Humphrey Sturt of Horton (fn. 53) (co. Dors.), who was the owner in 1745. (fn. 54) He had parted with it, however, before 1778, in which year Sir Thomas Gatehouse in his survey of Hampshire describes Heckfield Park as 'late the estate of Humphrey Sturt, esq., now in occupation of William Augustus Pitt, esq.' (fn. 55) This William Augustus Pitt was the younger brother of George Pitt, first Lord Rivers, the owner of Stratfieldsaye. He died without issue in 1809, (fn. 56) and his property then passed to his nephew George Pitt, second Lord Rivers, who had succeeded his father, George Pitt, first Lord Rivers, in 1803. From this date Heckfield follows the same descent as Stratfieldsaye (q.v.).

Cresswell. Argent three gimel bars sable.

Sturt. Vert a fesse or between three running horses argent with three roses gules upon the fesse.

A fair was held at Heckfield on Good Friday at the end of the 18th century, (fn. 57) but it has now fallen into disuse.

The first mention that has been found of the manor of GREENES is in a deed of 1589, whereby it was leased with Heckfield to Robert Hardinge. (fn. 58) It has since followed the same descent as that manor (q.v. supra).

The manor of HOLDSHOT (Holshute, xiv cent.; Holshet, xv cent.; Holleshote, xvi cent.), or PUTHAM, as it is now more usually called, owes its origin to the charter of John de Port granting to the Prior and convent of Merton (co. Surr.) in free alms one hide of his land in Heckfield, a wood, a meadow, common of pasture for their cattle with his demesne cattle, pasture and mast for their pigs in his wood without pannage, and sufficient wood for firing and repairs. (fn. 59) In 1208 Robert de St. Manefeo, lord of Heckfield, confirmed this charter, (fn. 60) and at the same time Walter the Prior of Merton quitclaimed to Robert all assarts and purprestures made by him and his brother Adam in the parish in return for a charter whereby Robert gave up all right to fields called Dainymore and Le Breche and a mill-pond in Holdsnot. (fn. 61) The prior and convent continued in possession of the manor of Holdshot, as their estate in the parish was subsequently called, until the Dissolution, when it fell into the hands of Henry VIII, (fn. 62) who in 1545 granted it to William Paulet, Lord St. John, created Marquess of Winchester on 12 October 1551. (fn. 63) The manor continued with successive Marquesses of Winchester and Dukes of Bolton until 1794, (fn. 64) when on the death of Harry Powlett, sixth Duke of Bolton, it passed to Jean Mary, only daughter of Charles Powlett, fifth Duke of Bolton, and wife of Thomas Orde, who was created Lord Bolton of Bolton Castle on 20 October 1797. (fn. 65) In 1817 William Powlett, Lord Bolton, son and heir of the last-named, sold the manor to Charles Shaw-Lefevre, (fn. 66) formerly Shaw, who had assumed the additional name of Lefevre on his marriage with Helena Lefevre, the only daughter and heiress of John Lefevre of Heckfield Place. (fn. 67) From him it passed to his son and heir Charles Shaw-Lefevre, who was Speaker of the House of Commons from 1839 to 1857, and on his retirement was raised to the peerage as Viscount Eversley, with a life pension of £4,000 a year. (fn. 68) He died at Heckfield Place on 28 December 1888 in his ninety-fifth year, being at that time the Father of the House of Lords. (fn. 69) The manor of Holdshot then passed to his eldest daughter, the Hon. Emma Laura ShawLefevre, who died on 2 April 1899, having four years previously sold it to the present owner, Lieut.-Colonel Horace Walpole. (fn. 70)

Merton Priory. Or fretty azure with eagles argent at the crossings of the fret.

Shaw-Lefevre, Viscount Eversley. Sable a cheveron argent between two trefoils or and a bezant with a cross formy on the top.

The mill worth 5s. and the fishery worth a hundred eels, which existed in the parish at the time of the Domesday Survey, (fn. 71) were apparently included in the grant of John de Port to the Prior and convent of Merton. They are not expressly mentioned in his charter, but in 1208 Robert de St. Manefeo renounced all claim to the mill-pond of the prior and convent in Holdshot. (fn. 72) Two water-mills of the annual value of 20s.—one of them apparently representing the mill in Holdshot and the other the mill in Mattingley (q.v. infra)—are included in an extent of the manor taken in 1341, (fn. 73) and at the dissolution of the abbey a watermill and a fulling-mill with a meadow called Cane Meadow were among the appurtenances of the manor. (fn. 74) No fewer than four mills were included in the sale of Holdshot to Charles Shaw-Lefevre in 1817. (fn. 75) At the present day the mill in Holdshot is still standing, and is situated a little to the west of Holdshot Farm on the banks of the Whitewater.

In 1280 the Prior of Merton was summoned to show cause why his villeins of Heckfield did not make suit at the king's hundred court of Holdshot. He produced the charter of Richard I, granting to the canons of Merton quittance from attendance at shire and hundred courts, and the charter of confirmation by Henry III, and the case was accordingly dismissed. (fn. 76)

In the same year the Prior of Merton proved the right of the prior and convent to tumbril and the assize of bread and ale in Holdshot (fn. 77)

MATTINGLEY (Matingeleghe, xi cent.; Matingele, xiii cent.; Martyngle, xv cent.), which Alric had held of King Edward as an alod, belonged to Alsi the son of Brixi in 1086. (fn. 78) Ellis, the owner in 1167, (fn. 79) was apparently succeeded by Revelendus, lord of Mattingley, who by Rose his wife left three sons, James de Oakley, Bartholomew de Oakley, and Stephen de Mattingley, among whom his possessions were divided. (fn. 80) James de Oakley had a son called Hugh de Oakley who granted his property in Mattingley to the Prior and convent of Merton, (fn. 81) and probably died without issue. Bartholomew de Oakley gave his inheritance to his brother Stephen de Mattingley, (fn. 82) who in 1206 granted to Walter Prior of Merton and his successors in free alms 6 virgates, 30 acres of land, several meadows, 6s. 3d. rent, and a mill in Mattingley. (fn. 83) Stephen was succeeded by his son Peter de Mattingley, who sold all his property to Geoffrey de Arundel. (fn. 84) The latter sought to recover from the prior and convent the land granted to them by Hugh de Oakley, (fn. 85) but in 1236 acknowledged it to be the right of the prior and convent, who accordingly received him and his wife Emma into all the benefits and prayers henceforth to be made in the church of Merton. (fn. 86) The prior and convent subsequently acquired the rest of the land in Maltingley of which Revelendus had died seised. It became merged in Holdshot and still forms part of that manor.

The mill in Mattingley granted to the prior and convent by Stephen de Mattingley in 1206 became one of the appurtenances of the manor of Holdshot, (fn. 87) being probably represented by one of the two water-mills included in an extent of the manor of Holdshot taken in 1341. (fn. 88) This mill, which was situated on the banks of the Whitewater, near Mattingley Clappers Bridge, existed till a few years ago.

The fair which was held at Mattingley on 29 July at the close of the 18th century (fn. 89) has since fallen into disuse.

In 1205 Robert son of Henry granted one hide of land in PUTHAM (Petteham, xiii cent.) to the Prior and convent of Merton in free alms. (fn. 90) This land became merged in Holdshot, and has ever since continued to form part of that manor.

In 1203 King John granted the Prior and convent of Merton his wood in HAZELEY (Heishulla, xii cent.; Heishull, Heysole, xiii cent.; Haysull, xiv cent.), called La Garston Regis, (fn. 91) with all appurtenances, to assart or trench or cultivate or inclose or to do with it in accordance with their will, free and quit from wastes and assarts, &c., saving to him his right of hunting. (fn. 92) In 1280 the Prior of Merton was stated to be holding one hide of land in Hazeley, which formerly was of the ancient demesne of the Crown belonging to the manor of Basingstoke. (fn. 93) The manor of Holdshot still comprises the greater part of Hazeley Heath.

A portion of HAZELEY HEATH from an early date formed part of the possessions of the lords of Bramshill. Thus in 1317 John de Foxley obtained a grant of free warren in his demesne lands of Hazeley, (fn. 94) and at his death in 1324 he was seised of 58 acres and 3 roods of land measured by a perch of 20 ft. in a piece of heath in Hazeley, in the forest of Pamber and the bailiwick of Eversley. (fn. 95) In 1347 Thomas de Foxley obtained licence to impark 2,500 acres of land and wood out of his several soil in Bramshill and Hazeley, (fn. 96) and at the present day Bramshill Park extends into the parish of Mattingley, which includes Hazeley Heath tithing.


The church of ST. MICHAEL, HECKFIELD, has a chancel 29 ft. by 14 ft. 10 in., north chapel of the same length and 15ft. 9 in. wide, nave 59 ft. 6 in. by 23 ft. 6 in., north aisle 7 ft. 8 in. wide, north-west porch, and west tower 14 ft. 6 in. by 13 ft. 1 in.; all internal measurements.

Although the building is doubtless of some antiquity, it has been so completely modernized that very few of the old details are left to tell the history of the fabric. There seems to have been an aisleless nave and chancel here in the 13th century, or earlier. At the 'restoration' of 1876 (described in the churchwardens' account book, quoted below) a piscina was discovered in the north chapel, and pronounced by Mr. Butterfield, the architect of the rebuilding, to be of the 12th century; it was, for some reason, covered up again, so that his statement cannot be verified; the former doorways were placed about midway in the nave. The chancel appears to have been rebuilt towards the end of the 14th century. An early 14th-century window was found in the walling in 1876. The chancel had a new east window in the 15th century, but the first great enlargement of the building apparently did not take place before the beginning of the 16th century, when on the evidence of two monuments, dated 1514 and 1518, the chapel, aisle, and tower were added; the latter seems to have been largely rebuilt in brick in the 18th century, when much other work was done. The church appears to have fallen into a bad condition before the reconstruction of 1876 took place, in spite of a previous restoration in the earlier part of the century, when some poor work was put in, to be removed again later.

In 1876 the east wall of the chancel was mostly rebuilt, and the 15th-century window raised some two feet, and partly restored; the south wall was very little altered or touched, but the south-east corner, where the wall had cracked and settled, was built up again; the opening into the chapel from the chancel, hitherto only 6 ft. wide, was enlarged and a new arch inserted; a passage to the east of it through the wall into the vestry was built up, the space within the altar rails was raised and a step put for the table; the chancel arch, which at some previous time had been bricked up and narrowed to a width of only 10 ft., was opened to its present width and rebuilt; the roof of the chancel was in a very dilapidated state, and was replaced by an entirely new one. The chapel had new windows inserted, the doorway was altered, a solid wood screen at its west end removed, and a new archway put in, and the present vestry formed by a new screen; in the south-east corner was found the early piscina already mentioned. The south wall of the nave was pulled down to within three or four feet of the ground, and rebuilt with a slight curve to accommodate a bend in the roof; the south doorway, a little to the east of the middle of the nave, which used to be a principal entrance, was abolished, with its brick porch, and the three unsightly windows put in thirty-four years before were replaced by new ones; the four octagonal brick shafts and the heavy arches of the north arcade, the date of which could not be ascertained, but which were probably not older than the early part of the 18th century, were removed, and replaced by the present lighter stone pillars and arches. The north aisle wall was pulled down altogether in its whole length; it was 'very old,' of great thickness and strength, and composed of conglomerate or 'ferule' of the district, fixed with mortar almost as hard as Roman cement, so that it was a matter of difficulty to break it and take it down, and it fell in large masses when prised up from underneath; its foundations were not deep, its stability depending on its great thickness; in the wall near the west end was found the tracery of a window of probably early 14th-century work; it was too dilapidated to be re-used, and was copied in the new north windows; the wall was rebuilt chiefly of the old materials, much less thick, and a few feet to the south, so as to diminish the size of the church, the interior breadth of which was previously 47½ ft. (37½ ft ?); the north entrance was moved from a little to the east of the middle of the aisle to its present position, and the porch built; two unsightly windows in the north wall, placed there about thirtyfour years before, were replaced by new ones; and the roof of the aisle, formerly gabled, was replaced by a lean-to leaded one. The south doorway in the tower, which had been stopped up, was opened out and enlarged; and new oak treads were put to the steps of the stair, otherwise the tower was left unaltered. (Subsequently its windows and doorways were restored.) Other work done included the retiling of the floors, reseating, a new pulpit, and the removal of the monumental brasses to their present positions; two consecration crosses, a foot in diameter, which were found on either side of the east window, were again hidden; a small pane of very old yellow glass in a south window of the chancel was unfortunately broken, 'but one half of it still remains.' (This has apparently now gone.)

The east window of the chancel has three cinquefoiled lights under a traceried four-centred head; the tracery is the original 15th-century work, but the rest is of modern repair. In the south wall is an ancient trefoiled credence and piscina with a shelf at the springing line and grooves for another in the top foil; the drain is quatrefoiled, and set at the east end of the recess. The two south windows are alike in detail, but the eastern is a modern copy of the other, which dates from the end of the 14th century. Each has two ogee trefoiled lights with half quatrefoils over in a square head; between the windows is a blocked doorway of a hollow-chamfered order with a pointed head. A modern arch of 14th-century style opens from the western half of the chancel into the north chapel.

The chapel, the eastern half of which is used as an organ-chamber and vestry, has a high east window of three plain four-centred lights in brick. Both its north windows are modern; the first is a single trefoiled light, and has a modern drain on its sill, the second is of two trefoiled lights under a square head; between the windows is a modern pointed doorway. Over the arch to the aisle is a modern window of three lights.

The chancel arch is modern, having semi-octagonal responds with moulded capitals and bases, and a twocentred two-chamfered arch. The nave has five modern south windows, each of two lights and tracery under square heads. The north arcade is all modern, and has four bays with round pillars of 14th century style, and pointed arches of a large singlechamfered order. The north-west doorway is modern, with a pointed head; the wall here is 4 ft. thick.

The aisle has three modern north windows, the first of three and the others of two trefoiled lights under square heads.

The porch is built in the north-west angle of the nave and aisle, and has a modern moulded outer doorway.

The tower arch is of brick plastered. In the west wall of the tower is a blocked doorway, partly of modern repair; it has two hollow-chamfered orders, with an arch under a square head. Over it is a 16th-century window of three plain four-centred lights, and a moulded square label with shield stops; much of it has been restored. The window to the chamber above is a plaster copy of the lower one. The bell-chamber is lighted by similar two-light windows with plain heads; they are mostly of late date. The stair-turret is at the south-east, and the parapet is embattled.

The walling, where visible, is built of the conglomerate usually called puddingstone, here very dark with iron and of very rough texture; but there is a good deal of red brick in the tower and elsewhere.

The roof of the chancel is gabled, and has a plaster-panelled ceiling with moulded wood ribs and bosses and moulded cornice; the nave is also gabled, and has a pointed plaster barrel vault with moulded wood ribs. The chapel is gabled and ceiled like the chancel; the aisle has a flat lean-to roof covered with lead; the others are tiled.

The Purbeck marble font is of the 15th century; it is octagonal in plan, and has traceried panelled sides to the bowl and stem. The other furniture includes a 17th-century altar table (now in the vestry), an ancient oak chest with pin hinges, a slit for coins in the middle of the lid, and a till at one end; on the lids are the marks of the three locks formerly used by the incumbent and wardens; part of the chest is of modern renewal, and in the tower is another later chest; the rest of the furniture is modern.

There are several old monuments in the church; the earliest is a brass set in the west wall of the chapel with the small figure of a lady, and the inscription:—Orate pro a[nim]b[us] Joh[an]is Hall et Elizabeth consortis sue 'qui quidm' Joh[an]es obiit xxvo die mensis Novembris Ao dni Mo Vc xiiii ex cujus sumptib[us] hec capella construitur quor' a[nim]abus p[ro]picietur deus.' On the step at the entrance to the chapel from the aisle is a second brass plate inscribed:—'Of yor charite pray for the soules of Thomas Wyfold, Em' & Annes his wyfes and all his chylderyn, the whiche Thomas decessed the xxi day of May the yer of or Lord m vc xxi on whose soull[s] Jhū have mercy.'

On the north wall of the nave is a brass inscription, removed from the chancel, where it was set to the north of the arch, to 'John Creswell and Isabel his wyfe, lord of this towne at the tyme of the byldyng of this stepyll and the newe yle and chapell in this cherche which John decessyd v day of Janever in Ao dni m vc xviii on whos sowll[s] Jhu have m[er]cy.' Over the inscription is his rebus—a cross and a well, with the initials J C—and the symbols of St. Luke and St. John.

Above this brass is a mural monument containing the kneeling effigy of a bearded man in armour facing those of his two wives; on the head of each of the three figures are curious flat tile-like headdresses, that of the man seeming to be entirely out of place, and put on at a later date to match the others. Behind the man are four sons, one an infant, and behind the ladies six daughters; below is the inscription to Thomas Cresswell 1607, son and heir of Richard Cresswell, died 1540, who was heir to Thomas Cresswell, died 1533, who was heir to John Cresswell, died 1518, who was heir to William, first lord of the manor of that name, who died 1475. His first wife was Alice daughter of Thomas Haydock, and the second, Jane daughter of Robert Baynard, by whom he had four sons and four daughters. The arms over the monument are Cresswell impaling: Argent a cross sable with a fleur-de-lis sable in the quarter for Haydock; and Cresswell impaling Baynard: Sable a fesse between two cheverons or quartering Or a doubleheaded eagle gules. In the back of the recess are painted the four sons' shields (reset upside down), with Cresswell quartering Baynard and six lozenges of the daughters, the first two with Cresswell quartering Haydock, and the other four quartering Baynard.

On the north wall of the chancel is another Renaissance monument, with a round-headed recess in which kneel the figures of a man and his wife with their two sons and three daughters, facing another man and wife with two daughters. The inscription reads: 'Prudence Humfry ye wife of William Humfry gent dedicated this monument to ye perpetuall me[m]ory of her most dear husband and father and mother and children June 3rd 1609. Henry Philips died 1591, Avis his wife died 1601, William Humfrey, gent., died 1608, Prudence his wife (space for date left blank).' The arms in the shields over are (1) Gules a crosslet argent, and thereon five roundels sable, for Humphrey, (2) Argent a lion sable chained or, for Philips, (3) Argent two cheverons sable and a chief gules. There are also two other defaced shields behind the figures.

On the other side of the chancel is a similar monument with the kneeling figure of a man in a black gown and the inscription to Henry Tomworthe of Ayleswardes in Mattingley, died 1608; it is followed by some verses; his arms are Argent a fesse dancetty between three cocks' heads razed sable with their combs and wattles gules.

In the north chapel are two brass inscriptions to Charles Huett, sub-treasurer to Queen Elizabeth in Ireland, 1627, and his son Charles, 1652.

There are five bells; the treble and the tenor are by Henry Knight, 1615; the second is inscribed: 'Love God 1641' and is also by Knight; the third is inscribed in Gothic capitals: + NOW : GOD : HELP : AND : HAVE : AL :,' and is by William Revel of London, c. 1350; and the fourth has 'Sancta Margareta, ora pro nobis,' and is from the Wokingham foundry, c. 1420.

The plate consists of a cup and cover paten of 1568, a pewter flagon inscribed on the handle R. M. 1637, and a pewter almsdish.

The registers—including that of Mattingley—begin in 1538; the first book is of paper, containing mixed entries of baptisms, marriages and burials thence to 1575; in November 1557 is the note, 'Sir Granger omytted the kepyng of thys book for iij whole yeres almost to the great hurte of many whō yt shall cu (concern ?) in questys'; it is followed by some blank sheets, beginning again in 1559; the second book is an unusually long and narrow one (about 23 m. by 5¾ in.), in parchment, and contains baptisms, marriages, and burials from 1575 to 1605; the third is in paper, and has all three from 1605 to 1663, one in 1666, and several in 1676; there is a gap from 1627 to 1630, probably through the loss of two middle leaves; the fourth book, in parchment, continues all three from 1672 to 1714; the fifth takes them from 1729 to 1760; the sixth has marriages from 1754 to 1780; the seventh, marriages 1781 to 1812; the eighth, baptisms and burials 1761 to 1803; and the ninth, the same from 1803 to 1812.

The chapel at Mattingley (dedication unknown) is a small timber and brick building, consisting of a chancel 22 ft. by 14 ft. 6 in. with south vestry and organ chamber, nave 46 ft. 11 in. by 16 ft. 6 in., north and south aisles 6 ft. 3 in. wide, and a north porch. The chancel and nave date from c. 1500, and the aisles and vestry are modern additions. The walls are of vertical timbers filled in between with red brickwork set in herring-bone fashion, and plastered on the inside. The chancel is divided into two bays by moulded oak posts set against the walls inside; these support the roof trusses, which have braced and moulded tie-beams and an arched collar-truss over. The east window is an original one of five lights with four-centred uncusped heads; the north window in the second bay is also old, and has four similar lights. Below the windows runs a moulded wooden string, the wall beneath it being covered with 17th-century panelling in the east bay of the chancel. The vestry south of the chancel has a re-used south doorway with a four-centred arch in a square head.

The nave is divided from the aisles by arcades of five bays a side; these have moulded wood posts, of which the sides towards the nave are old and the remainder modern. The trusses are like those in the chancel, and between the posts are modern arched braces towards the aisles. The west window is a modern one of four lights. The aisles each have three four-light windows in their side walls, two-light west windows, and in the north aisle an east window also of two lights, all being modern copies of those in the chancel, and below them is fixed the old moulded string from below the sills of the original nave windows. The north doorway has a four-centred arch under a square head, and the north porch is also the original one, brought out when the aisle was added; it has four-light windows on either side and its double gates have pierced four-centred openings and moulded capping. The roofs are ceiled between the rafters and have moulded cornices, except that in the eastern bay of the chancel, which is panelled with moulded ribs, and that in the western bay of the nave, which is similarly treated, and has perhaps been the ceiling over the rood at the east end of the nave. There are carved bosses at the intersections of the panels, one with an Agnus Dei and another with an inscription, apparently "ihesus." Over the west end of the nave is an oak shingled bell-turret with a pyramidal roof; in it are two old bells; the smaller one has no inscription or mark, but its shape, and the square section of the sound-bow, mark it as early, perhaps of the 13th century, and the other is late 15th-century work, and bears a line of reversed black letter smalls 'turquieto.'

In the north window of the chancel are a few fragments of old glass, some good quarries, part of a saint's head, and an inscription of four letters, which seems to be the title of the Cross.

The furniture is all modern; the font is of marble, and there is an octagonal font in the churchyard. At the west end is preserved the old altar-frontal dated 1667, which was in use down to 1887. It is of crimson velvet with silver embroidery, having inri and the Hebrew name of God in a glory.

The plate consists of a silver chalice and paten cover, both of 1568.

For registers see Heckfield.


There was a church in Heckfield at the time of the Domesday Survey. (fn. 97) The advowson continued with the Ports until 1202, when Adam de Port granted it to Robert de St. Manefeo, (fn. 98) and from that date it followed the descent of the manor until about the middle of the 14th century, (fn. 99) when Thomas de St. Manefeo granted it to William of Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester. (fn. 100) William of Wykeham founded 'Seinte Marie College of Wynchestre,' afterwards called New College, Oxford, on 29 November 1379, (fn. 101) and a week later obtained licence to grant the advowson of Heckfield to the warden and scholars. (fn. 102) In January 1383 the official of the Archdeacon of Winchester reported in favour of the proposal to appropriate the church to the college as a further provision for the maintenance of its members, (fn. 103) and in June of the same year the appropriation was carried into effect. (fn. 104) At the present day the living is a vicarage of the net income of £270, with 5½ acres of glebe and residence, in the gift of the warden and fellows of the college.

At a very early date the Prior and convent of Merton had a chapel within their inclosure of Holdshot, where they had liberty to minister in divine things. (fn. 105) This chapel was only intended for the canons and their servants, and the other parishioners of Heckfield were not allowed to attend it on Sundays or other feast-days because it was incumbent upon them to attend the parish church of Heckfield. Moreover the servants of the canons were expected to hear service in the parish church on Christmas Day, on the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and on Easter Sunday. (fn. 106) By the end of the 14th century this chapel had been apparently replaced by a 'certain house in the vill of Mattingley, built instead of a chapel,' (fn. 107) and in 1387 William of Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester, in answer to a petition of the Prior of Merton, gave licence to the vicar of Heckfield, or to a suitable chaplain chosen by him, to officiate in it until the Sunday after the ensuing Easter, at the same time forbidding parishioners of other churches to attend it. (fn. 108) In 1425 Pope Martin V granted licence to the inhabitants of Mattingley to have a cemetery at their chapel on their petition that the chapel had all parochial rights and insignia except burial, and that it was inconvenient for them to carry their dead to Heckfield, because Mattingley was distant 2 miles, and the waters between the two places were frequently in flood. (fn. 109) Mattingley continued to be a parochial chapelry dependent on the mother church of Heckfield until 13 January 1863, when it was formed into a district chapelry. (fn. 110) It was endowed with £1,000 capital out of the Common Fund on 11 December 1863, (fn. 111) and with a tithe rent-charge in Heckfield parish on 12 April 1864. (fn. 112) The living is at the present day a vicarage, net yearly value £136 with residence, in the gift of the warden and fellows of New College, Oxford.

At the beginning of the 13th century, by a convention between John parson of the church of Heckfield and Richard the Prior of Merton, it was agreed that the canons, who had been accustomed to pay 1 mark of silver annually in lieu of tithes, should pay henceforward to the church of Merton tithes from corn, beans, pears, apples, cherries, and hay, that they should be quit for ever from the payment of the mark and from tithes from assarts, and that their tenants should pay tithes in full. (fn. 113)

There is a private Roman Catholic chapel in Heckfield Place.


Robert Corham, by will dated 20 March 1593 (proved in the P.C.C. 1596), charged his property in Hartley Wintney, called the Blackhouse, with the yearly sum of 13s. 4d for the poor of this parish and Hartley Wintney. The rent-charge was redeemed in 1904 by the transfer to the official trustees of £26 13s. 4d. consols.

The sum of £13 6s. 8d. stock belonging to this parish has, by investment of surplus income, been augmented to £19 0s. 3d. consols, producing yearly 9s. 4d.

The table of benefactions in the church of Heckfield mentioned that John Woodcock gave to the poor of this parish 40s. a year charged upon a farm in Hazeley, called Burrant's, formerly belonging to Sir John Cope, bart.

In 1791 George, Lord Rivers, by will proved in the P.C.C, 1803, left £50 for the poor, which, augmented by subscriptions, is now represented by £100 consols with the official trustees.

It was stated on the table of benefactions in the chapel of Mattingley, that Mr. John Woodcock gave £4 per annum for ever, charged upon a farm in Hazeley called Burrant's, also that Mrs. Ann Blyeth gave 30s. per annum for ever, then payable out of certain lands called Wright's, which were duly distributed among the poor.

The Charity Commissioners, however, do not appear to have any recent information as to these gifts.

The Rev. John Taylor in his lifetime, about 1714, gave £50 to be employed in buying religious books for the poor of Heckfield and Mattingley.

The trust fund consists of £60 consols with the official trustees.


  • 1. Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
  • 2. Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
  • 3. Inclosure Awards Blue Bk.
  • 4. Including 830½ acres of arable land, 570½ acres of permanent grass, and 5 acres of woods and plantations (Statistics from Bd. of Agric. 1905).
  • 5. Feet of F. Hants, 10 John. Dainymoor probably corresponds to Danmoor, a house and grounds belonging to LieutColonel Horace Walpole, and at present occupied by Mr. Bucknall.
  • 6. Feet of F. Hants, 8 John.
  • 7. Chart. R. 5 John, m. 26.
  • 8. De Banco R. Mich. 13 Hen. VII, m. 359. It wag so called from the Rycher family, who were already seated at Mattingley in the middle of the 14th century (Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 14 Edw. III).
  • 9. Pat. 36 Hen. VIII, pt. xvi, m. 13.
  • 10. P.C.C. Will, 4 Ayloffe.
  • 11. Add. MS. 33278, fol. 147b.
  • 12. Anct. D. (P.R.O.), D. 479.
  • 13. Ibid. D. 457.
  • 14. Close, 36 Eliz. pt. viii, no. 11. Hell House Grove owes its name to the Helhouse family, who were seated at Heckfield as late as the reign of Charles II.
  • 15. Ibid. 33 Eliz. pt. xx.
  • 16. Ibid. 5 Jas. I, pt. xiv.
  • 17. Ibid. 6 Jas. I, pt. xii, no. 47.
  • 18. Chan. Enr. Dec. R. 1349.
  • 19. Close, 4 Jas. I, pt. xxxiii; 5 Jas. I, pt. xi.
  • 20. Com. Pleas Recov. R. Mich. 6 Chas. I, m. 23.
  • 21. V.C.H. Hants, i, 483b.
  • 22. It was the one knight's fee in Hampshire which Adam de St. Manefeo was holding of the new enfeoffment of John de Port in 1166 (Red Bk. of Exch. i, 209).
  • 23. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 230a; Close, 23 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 17, 18 d.
  • 24. Feet of F. Hants, 10 John.
  • 25. He was returned by the Testa de Nevill as holding one knight's fee in Heckfield of the old enfeoffment of Robert de St. John (Testa de Nevill [Rec. Com.], 230a). It was probably the same Adam who leased premises in the manor of Heckfield to Roger son of Amisius (Add. Chart. 684).
  • 26. Pat. 4 Edw. I, m. 14.
  • 27. Egerton MS. 2031, fol. 15.
  • 28. Feud. Aids, ii, 313.
  • 29. Pat. 14 Edw. II, m. 14.
  • 30. Chart. R. 2 Edw. III, m. 10; Abbrev. Rot. Orig. (Rec. Com.), ii, 25.
  • 31. Egerton MS. 2032, fol. 138 d.
  • 32. Vide Egerton MS. 2033, fol. 18.
  • 33. Pat. 13 Edw. III, pt. ii, m. 8 d.
  • 34. Ibid.
  • 35. Egerton MS. 2033, fol. 18.
  • 36. Close, 4 Ric. II, m. 13 d.
  • 37. This Amice was apparently the niece and heir of Sir John de Plessy and widow of Jacob del Beel of Lucca, merchant. Sir Philip la Vache married Elizabeth, who was perhaps widow of Sir John de Plessy (Pat. 8 Ric. II, m. 4).
  • 38. Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 18 Ric. II.
  • 39. Exch. Inq. p.m. 5 & 6 Hen. IV, file 1719, no. 5.
  • 40. Close, 7 Hen. IV, m. 40.
  • 41. Pat. 4 Hen. IV, pt. ii, m. 11.
  • 42. Vide Pat. 9 Hen. IV, pt. ii, m. 21.
  • 43. Elizabeth and Thomas conveyed it to Thomas Kemp, Bishop of London, William Croweton, clerk, and Nicholas Kene, clerk (Feet of F. Hants, East. 29 Hen. VI).
  • 44. Memorial inscription in Heckfield Church.
  • 45. Ibid.; P.C.C. Will, 4 Ayloffe.
  • 46. Memorial inscription.
  • 47. Ibid.; Chan. Misc. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), file 684, no. 11.
  • 48. Recov. R. East. 1651, rot. 125.
  • 49. Harl. Soc. I ubl. viii, 506.
  • 50. Burke, Colonial Gentry, ii, 445–6.
  • 51. Ibid.
  • 52. Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 4 Geo. I.
  • 53. Hutchins, Dors. iii, 125.
  • 54. Recov. R. Hil. 19 Geo. II, rot. 14.
  • 55. Sir Thomas Gatehouse, MS. Surv. of Hants penes Lord Swaythling.
  • 56. Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 57. Warner, Hist. of Hants, i, 253.
  • 58. Ex inform. Mrs. J. Hautenville Cope.
  • 59. Vide Feet of F. Hants, 10 John.
  • 60. Ibid.
  • 61. Ibid.
  • 62. Cott. MS. Cleop. C. vii, fol. 62, 62 d, 75 d.; De Banco R. Mich. 13 Hen. VII; Mins. Accts. Surr. 36 & 37 Hen. VIII, no. 187, m. 9d. Thomas de Kent, Prior of Merton, granted it to Sir James de Woodstock and Joan his wife for their lives at a rose rent. Sir James de Woodstock died seised in 1340 (Inq. p.m. 15 Edw. III [1st nos.], no. 18; Close, 15 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 44). His widow subsequently married Thomas de Foxley, who died seised in 1361 (Inq. p.m. 34 Edw. III, no. 55).
  • 63. Pat. 36 Hen. VIII, pt. xvi, m. 3.
  • 64. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cclxii, 125; Feet of F. Div. Co. Hil. 1 Jas. I; 7 Jas. I; Chan. Inq. p.m. 5 Chas. I (Ser. 2), pt. i, no. 102; Recov. R. Trin. 1652, rot. 112; Mich. 28 Geo. II, rot. 383.
  • 65. G.E.C. Complete Peerage, i, 372–5.
  • 66. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 58 Geo. III.
  • 67. G.E.C. Complete Peerage, iii, 296.
  • 68. G.E.C. Complete Peerage, iii, 296.
  • 69. Ibid.
  • 70. Information given by Lieut.-Col. Horace Walpole.
  • 71. V.C.H. Hants, i, 483b.
  • 72. Fect of F, Hants, 10 John.
  • 73. Inq. p.m. 15 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 18.
  • 74. Mins. Accts. Surr. 36 & 37 Hen. VIII, no. 187, m. 9 d.
  • 75. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 58 Geo. III.
  • 76. Plac. de Quo War. (Rec. Com.), 769.
  • 77. Assize R. 789, m. 22 d.
  • 78. V.C.H. Hants, i, 505a.
  • 79. Pipe R. 13 Hen. II (Pipe R. Soc), xi, 189.
  • 80. Cott. MS. Cleop. C. vii, fol. 134 d.
  • 81. Ibid.
  • 82. Ibid. In spite of this grant Rose daughter of Bartholomew de Oakley gave King John 100s. in 1204 to have her reasonable share of the two knights' fees in Oakley and Mattingley formerly belonging to her father (Rot. de Oblat. et Fin. 218).
  • 83. Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 8 John.
  • 84. Cott. MS. Cleop. C. vii, fol. 134 d.
  • 85. Ibid.
  • 86. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 21 Hen. III.
  • 87. Ibid. Trin. 8 John.
  • 88. Inq. p.m. 15 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 18.
  • 89. Warner, Hist. of Hants, i, 27.
  • 90. Feet of F. Hants, East. 7 John.
  • 91. The name still survives in Garstor Wood.
  • 92. Chart. R. 5 John, m. 26.
  • 93. Assize R. 789, m. 22 d.
  • 94. Chart. R. 10 Edw. II, m. 12.
  • 95. Inq. p.m. 18 Edw. II, no. 38; Close, 19 Edw. II, m. 34.
  • 96. Pat. 21 Edw. III, pt. iv, m. 19.
  • 97. V.C.H. Hants, i, 483 b.
  • 98. Feet of F. Hants, East. 4 John.
  • 99. Egerton MSS. 2031, fol. 15; 2032, fol. 138 d.; 2033, fol. 18.
  • 100. His gift was confirmed by hit son and successor John de St. Manefeo in 1380 (Close, 4 Ric. II, m. 42 d.).
  • 101. Wykeham's Reg.(Hants Rec.Soc.), 136.
  • 102. Pat. 2 Ric. II, pt. i, m. 2.
  • 103. His report ends by stating that the necessities and evident interests of the warden and scholars, who were seventy in number, demanded that the church should be appropriated to and united with their foundation for their support and maintenance, and that these things were so well known as to be beyond denial in the parish of Heckfield and in Oxford and the neighbourhood (Wykebam's Reg. [Hants Rec. Soc], i, 138–42).
  • 104. Ibid, i, 142. The appropriation was confirmed in 1398 (Cal. of Papal Letters, v, 172).
  • 105. Cott. MS. Cleop. C. vii, fol. 75 d.
  • 106. Ibid.
  • 107. Wykebam's Reg. (Hants Rec. Soc), ii, 394–5.
  • 108. Wykeham's Reg. (Hants Rec. Soc), ii, 394–5.
  • 109. Cal. of Papal Letters, vii, 394.
  • 110. Lond. Gaz. 13 Jan. 1863, p. 211.
  • 111. Ibid. 11 Dec. 1863. p. 6482.
  • 112. Ibid. 12 Apr. 1864, p. 2027.
  • 113. Cott. MS. Cleop. C vii, fol. 75 d.