Parishes: East Dean

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

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'Parishes: East Dean', in A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4, (London, 1911) pp. 498-500. British History Online [accessed 11 April 2024]

In this section


Dene (xi cent.); Estdena (xii cent.); Estden and Est Deene (xiii cent.); Est Deone (xiv cent.).

The parish of East Dean covers an area of 1,073 acres. The general rise of the ground is from northeast to south-west, Dean Hill in the south-west reaching a height of 446 ft. above the ordnance datum. The parish is watered by an old canal flowing from West Grimstead (co. Wilts.) to join the River Test below Dunbridge. In the north of the parish stands East Dean House, a modern building in well-wooded grounds, the residence of the Hon. Henry Dugdale Curzon, M.A., D.L., J.P., and near to it is the parish church. Opposite the church are a couple of half-timber cottages probably of 17th-century date. West of the church and on the north of the road is a fair-sized red brick farm-house of early 18th-century date, in the garden of which are some handsome clipped yews. The parish contains 518½ acres of arable land, 349½ acres of permanent grass and 75 acres of woods and plantations. (fn. 1) The soil is loam and clay with a subsoil of chalk and clay.


The manor of EAST DEANwas a member of the royal manor of Broughton in 1086. (fn. 2) Broughton formed at a later date part of the possessions of a Norman and with East Dean had escheated to the Crown by the beginning of the 13th century. (fn. 3) East Dean then became separated from Broughton and was granted by King John to Richard de Rivers. (fn. 4) The grant was apparently for life, as in 1228 Henry III gave to William de Rivers 1 carucate of land in East Dean which had belonged to his father Richard, to hold during the king's pleasure. (fn. 5) William was dealing with half a carucate of land in East Dean (fn. 6) in 1236, but on his death this land reverted to the Crown. Edward I granted it for life to John Pickard, and in 1301 gave the reversion after the death of John to John de Vienna and Ellen his wife for the term of their lives, (fn. 7) while Edward II confirmed the reversion after the death of Ellen to John son of John de Vienna, the king's clerk. (fn. 8) Edward I also granted John and Ellen for life lands in East Dean which had been parcel of the manor of East Tytherley (fn. 9) (q.v.), and Edward II confirmed the reversion of this estate also to John son of John de Vienna. The previous history of the latter estate was as follows. In 1229 Thomas de Columbars, lord of East Tytherley, granted land in East Dean to Aveline de Dean to hold of him and his heirs for a rent of 8s. (fn. 10) Again in 1249 Roger le Bedel, perhaps a descendant of Aveline de Dean, agreed to pay a rent of 8s. and suit at Matthew de Columbars' court of East Tytherley for his freehold in East Dean. (fn. 11)

After the death of Ellen (fn. 12) the reversion of both estates in East Dean was granted in 1331 by John son of John de Vienna to Roger Lysewy of Salisbury and Joan his wife. (fn. 13) In 1337 Roger was exempted from payment of the fee-farm rent of £8, (fn. 14) and four years later he conveyed the reversion of one messuage, 151 acres of land, 25 acres of meadow, 60 acres of pasture, 18 acres of wood and £5 16s. 6½d. rent in East Dean, Lockerley and Holbury to William son of William de Overton and Isabel his wife. (fn. 15) William obtained a grant of free warren in East Dean in 1346, (fn. 16) and died seised of the manor of East Dean in 1361. (fn. 17) From this date the property followed the same descent as one moiety of the manor of West Tytherley (q.v.) until about 1425, (fn. 18) when Robert Tawke son and heir of Thomas Tawke came of age. The manor changed hands soon after, and passed to John Whitehead, who died seised in 1486, leaving as his heir his son Maurice. (fn. 19) From this date the manor followed the same descent as the manor of Norman Court in West Tytherley (q.v.), (fn. 20) passing from the Whiteheads to the Thistlethwaytes, and from the Thistlethwaytes to Charles Wall at the beginning of the 19th century. Mr. Washington Singer, of Norman Court, is one of the principal landowners in the parish at the present day.

There were two mills worth 20s. in East Dean at the time of the Domesday Survey. (fn. 21)

Besides the entry of Dean under Broughton there are three other references to land in Dean, in Broughton Hundred, in Domesday Book. One estate paid geld for 2 hides and 1 virgate; it had been held by Boda of King Edward as an alod, and in 1086 was in possession of Waleran the Huntsman, lord also of West Dean (fn. 22) (co. Wilts.). The second estate was also held by Waleran, who had succeeded Manno in its possession; it paid geld for I virgate, and it is expressly stated that it did not belong to any of Waleran's other manors. (fn. 23) The third estate was assessed at half a hide; it had been held by Ulstan of King Edward as an alod, and in 1086 formed part of the possessions of Walter son of Roger 'de Pistes,' being held of him by a certain Herbert. (fn. 24)

The first-named property comprised the district which was added to West Tytherley in 1883. It was a separate parish called West Dean All Saints until 1474, in which year it was united for ecclesiastical purposes with West Dean St. Mary (co. Wilts.). Its history has been traced under West Tytherley (q.v.).

The second estate was in East Dean. It continued with Waleran's descendants until the end of the 12th century, when Walter Waleran granted it to the cathedral church of Salisbury. (fn. 25) The dean and chapter continued to hold the property until 1650, (fn. 26) when, under an Act of Parliament for the abolition of deans and chapters and the sale of their lands, it was sold by the description of the manor of LOCKERLEY and DEAN to John Dove of Salisbury. (fn. 27) It was restored to the dean and chapter after the accession of Charles II, but was sold by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in 1880 to Levi Jerrett, with whose descendants the property now remains.

The history of the estate held by Herbert of Walter son of Roger 'de Pistes' has not been traced.

The so-called manor of EAST DEAN, afterwards in the possession of the priory of Mottisfont, must have formed a part of the fee of William Briwere, for in 1361 the Prior of Mottisfont was stated to be holding half a fee in East Dean of his descendant Henry Duke of Lancaster. (fn. 28) In 1268 the prior and convent obtained a grant of 30 acres of land, 30 acres of wood and 20s. rent in East Dean from Peter de Ferryngtes and Thomasine his wife, (fn. 29) and in 1291 their property in the parish was worth £2 6s. 8d. a year. (fn. 30) They were confirmed in the privilege of holding the assize of bread and ale in Mottisfont, East Dean and Wallop, which they said they had of the gift of William Briwere the elder, at the request of Henry of Lancaster in 1345. (fn. 31) Their possessions in East Dean were further increased by a small grant of land in 1368. (fn. 32) From this date the property followed the same descent as the manor of Mottisfont (fn. 33) (q.v. infra) until shortly after the death of Sir John Barker-Mill, bart., in 1860. The present owner is the Hon. Henry Dugdale Curzon, M.A.,. J.P., D.L., fourth son of Richard William Penn first Earl Howe, to whom it was given by Lady Barker-Mill, widow of Sir John Barker-Mill. (fn. 34)

Land sometimes called the manor of EAST DEAN and LOCKERLEY was held by Sir Walter Romsey in 1316, (fn. 35) and from this date it followed the same descent as the manor of Romsey Horseys in the parish of Romsey in the hundred of King's Somborne (q.v.) until 1557. (fn. 36) At this date Sir Richard Lister alienated the property in East Dean and Lockerley to Thomas Wheatland, (fn. 37) who sold it to Richard Zouche thirty years later for the sum of £150. (fn. 38) The following year Richard Zouche bought from George Thorpe, the cousin and heir of Francis Dawtrey, the manor of Lockerley and lands in East Dean which had formerly belonged to the Prior and convent of St. Denis, Southampton. (fn. 39) The two estates naturally merged, and their later descent is given under Lockerley (q.v.).

Curzon. Or a fesse sable between three wolves' heads sable cut off at the neck, for Howe; quartered with Argent a bend sable with three popinjays or thereon having collars gules, for Curzon.


The church, of unknown dedication, consists of a chancel 12 ft. by 11 ft. 2 in., a nave 42 ft. 7 in. by 15 ft., and a north porch. The present plan appears to represent a structure perhaps of the 12th century, but no detail earlier than the 13th-century east window of the chancel is to be seen. All the other old windows have been replaced by square-headed wood-framed openings, but the head of a small 12th-century window is preserved in the church.

The east window of the chancel is a short single lancet with a narrow external rebate and a chamfered rear arch. In the north wall is a small blocked opening with a flat wooden lintel of uncertain date, and in the south wall a square-headed window of two lights, one of which is fitted with an iron casement. The modern chancel arch is segmental, and of one slightly chamfered order, and supersedes a small flat lintelled opening. To the south of it on the west are traces of a small pointed opening, probably the head of a recess over the south nave altar, as it is unnecessarily high for a squint.

The nave is lit by a three-light window on the north, a three, a two and a single light window on the south and a three-light window on the west. Over the west window is a circular light of 18th-century date set in the gable which has been rebuilt in brick. The north door, in about the centre of the north wall, has a round head much defaced, in which is set a heavy oak door frame with a slightly pointed head and apparently of the 17th century. The door is old and retains its wrought-iron strap hinges and heavy wood-cased lock. The original north doorway was probably one bay further west, and the single light window in the same position on the south perhaps marks the place of a south doorway. The 18th-century north porch is of brick with a square-headed wood-framed entrance.

The roofs date perhaps from the 18th century. Both are plastered, and that of the chancel has moulded wall plates and cambered tie-beams. At the west end of the nave is an 18th-century gallery, in which is incorporated some late 17th-century panelling. Over the west end of the roof is a small modern bell-cot with cusped light. The seating and fittings are modern, and the font is a small marble basin on a fluted column of the 18th century, set near the north door.

The bell-cot contains one bell.

The church possesses a chalice, paten, flagon and almsplate, all plated.

There are four books of registers; the first contains baptisms and burials between 1682 and 1801 and marriages from 1682 to 1754 and from 1773 to 1776; the second contains marriages from 1754 to 1812; the third contains baptisms from 1800 to 1812; the fourth burials from 1800 to 1812.


East Dean was a chapelry dependent on the rectory of Mottisfont at the time of the Domesday Survey (fn. 40) and continued to be annexed to that parish until December 1884, when by an Order in Council the chapelries of Lockerley and East Dean were separated from the parish of Mottisfont and together constituted a separate parish named 'The Perpetual Curacy of Lockerley with East Dean.' (fn. 41) The living is now a chapelry annexed to the rectory of Lockerley of the joint net yearly value of £210 with 3½ acres of glebe.


William Newman by will, proved 1863, left for the poor £225 consols, with the official trustees. The annual dividends amounting to £5 12s. 6d. are equally divided among six recipients.


  • 1. Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
  • 2. V.C.H. Hants, i, 453b. The last mention of its dependence upon Broughton occurs in 1341 (Inq. a.q.d. file 257, no. 9).
  • 3. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 236.
  • 4. Ibid. It was valued at £10 (Cal. Close, 1227–31, p. 25). While Richard de Rivers was lord of East Dean he confirmed a grant of land in East Dean and Lockerley made to the Prior and convent of St Denis by Robert de Anniler and Hilary his wife (Add. MS. 15314, fol. 87). This land afterwards formed part of the prior and convent's manor of Lockerley.
  • 5. Cal. Close, 1227–31, p. 25.
  • 6. He granted the third part of this land (reserving the capital messuage) to Stephen de Dean, to hold of him by the service of the twelfth part of a knight's fee. In return for this gift Stephen quitclaimed all right that he had in the other two-thirds (Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 20 Hen. III).
  • 7. Cal. Close, 1292–1301, p. 597.
  • 8. Abbrev. Rot. Orig. (Rec. Com.), i, 226; Pat. 9 Edw. II, pt. ii, m. 9.
  • 9. See Close, 4 Edw. II, m. 25 d. The last mention of the dependence of this estate upon East Tytherley occurs in 1425 (Inq. p.m. 4 Hen. VI, no. 42).
  • 10. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 13 Hen. III.
  • 11. Ibid. Hil. 33 Hen. III.
  • 12. Ellen married John de Wyshawe as her second husband (Plac. Abbrev. [Rec. Com.], 326), and had licence to celebrate divine service in the oratory of her house between 1323 and 1333 (Egerton MS. 2032, fol. 110).
  • 13. Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 5 Edw. III: Pat. 5 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 11.
  • 14. Ibid. 11 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 30.
  • 15. Ibid. 15 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 25; Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 15 Edw. III.
  • 16. Chart. R, 20 Edw. III, m. 4.
  • 17. Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III, pt ii, no. 18. This inquisition is missing (see Cal. Inq. p.m. [Rec. Com.], ii, 240).
  • 18. Inq. a.q.d. file 347, no. 15; Inq. p.m. 43 Edw. III, pt ii, no. 10; 10 Ric. II, no. 48; 13 Ric. II, no. 37; 2 Hen. IV, no. 42; 7 Hen. IV, no. 11; 4 Hen. VI, no. 42.
  • 19. Cal. Inq. p.m. Hen. VII, i, 185. In the inquisition the manor was said to be held by Thomas Tawke.
  • 20. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), xi, 104; De Banc. R. Hil. 15 Hen. VII, m. 321, 427; Mich. 15 Hen. VII, m. 121; Recov. R. Mich. 5 Chas. I, rot. 9; Feet of F. Div. Co. East. 13 Anne; Recov. R. Mich. 43 Geo. III, rot. 34; Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 44 Geo. III.
  • 21. V.C.H. Hants, i, 453b.
  • 22. Ibid. 497a.
  • 23. V.C.H. Hants, i, 453b.
  • 24. Ibid. 497b, 498a.
  • 25. Leland, Itin. (ed. Hearne, 2), iii, 80.
  • 26. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 5 John; Feud. Aids, ii, 311; Valor Eccl. ii, 79.
  • 27. Close, 1650, pt. xv, no. 17.
  • 28. Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III, pt. i, no. 122. The family of Pershute also held lands in East Dean of Henry Duke of Lancaster (ibid.). In 1256 Richard Pershute acquired half a carucate of land there from Richard Le Gor and Joan his wife and the heirs of Joan for a rent of ½ lb. of cummin (Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 40 Hen. III).
  • 29. Ibid. East. 52 Hen. III.
  • 30. Pope Nich. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 214.
  • 31. Cal. Pat. 1343–5, p. 547.
  • 32. Inq. a.q.d. file 364, no. 13.
  • 33. Feud. Aids, ii, 311; Pat. 28 Hen. VIII, pt. i, m. 9; Feet of F. Div. Co. Mich. 4 Edw. VI; Mich. 19 & 20 Eliz.; Hants, Mich. 42 & 43 Eliz.; Recov. R. Mich. 42 Eliz. rot. 172; East. 33 Chas. II, rot. 158; Hil. 26 Geo. III, rot. 301.
  • 34. Ex inform. the Hon. Henry Dugdale Curzon.
  • 35. Feud. Aids, ii, 311.
  • 36. Inq. p.m. 5 Hen. IV, no. 32; 6 Hen. IV, no. 29; 8 Hen. V, no. 89; 19 Hen. VI, no. 36; 26 Hen. VI, no. 26; 17 Edw. IV, no. 46; Feet of F. Hants, 1 Edw. IV, file 74, no. 1; Hil. 29 Hen. VIII; Recov. R. Trin. 29 Hen. VIII, rot. 353.
  • 37. Pat. 3 & 4 Phil. and Mary, pt. iv, m. 18.
  • 38. Ibid. 29 Eliz. pt. xi, m. 9; vide Ct. of Req. bdle. 59, no. 26.
  • 39. Close, 31 Eliz. pt. xiii.
  • 40. V.C.H. Hants, i, 468b.
  • 41. Lond. Gaz. (1885), i, 8.