Parishes: Mottisfont

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.


'Parishes: Mottisfont', A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4, (London, 1911), pp. 503-510. British History Online [accessed 14 June 2024].

. "Parishes: Mottisfont", in A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4, (London, 1911) 503-510. British History Online, accessed June 14, 2024,

. "Parishes: Mottisfont", A History of the County of Hampshire: Volume 4, (London, 1911). 503-510. British History Online. Web. 14 June 2024,

In this section


Mortesfunde, Motesfunda, Mortelhunte (xi cent.); Modesfunte (xiii cent.); Motesfonte and Motes Fountton (xiv cent.); Mottesfont (xv cent.); Mottesfount and Mottson (xvi cent.); Motsonne and Motte Fount (xvii cent.).

The parish of Mottisfbnt, covering an area of 2,790 acres, lies on ground sloping from a height of 231 ft. above the ordnance datum at Spearywell in the west to the low valley of the Test in the east. The London and South Western Railway has two stations here, Mottisfont station on the Andover and Redbridge branch, and Dunbridge station on the Eastleigh and Salisbury branch. The village is in the east of the parish about half a mile from the main Stockbridge road. In a meadow to the east of Oakley farm-house stands the famous 'Oakley Oak,' which, 4½ ft. above the ground, has a girth of 31½ ft. (fn. 1)

There are approximately 1,200 acres of arable land, 800 acres of permanent grass and 700 acres of woods and plantations in the parish.

The soil is loam and sand with a subsoil of gravel, and the chief crops are wheat, barley, oats and peas. (fn. 2)

Under the provisions of the Divided Parishes Act part of Spearywell in Broughton parish has been added to Mottisfbnt for civil purposes.

The following place-names occur: Wopstrete alias Walpstreate (xvi cent.) (fn. 3); Reynoldham (xvii cent.). (fn. 4)


The manor of MOTTISFONT, exclusive of the 5 hides less 1 virgate appurtenant to the church of Mottisfont which belonged to the Archbishop of York (q.v. infra), (fn. 5) although not mentioned in Domesday, was apparently held by William I in 1086. Before the end of the 12 th century it passed to William Briwere the elder, who founded the priory of Mottisfont about 1200 (fn. 6) (but see below), endowing it with all the land he had in Mottisfont. (fn. 7) This grant was confirmed by King John in 1204. (fn. 8) In 1227 the prior and convent were confirmed in their possession of land and rent there granted to them by Michael de Columbars and Thomas de Columbars, (fn. 9) while in 1345 they acquired a confirmation of the privilege of holding the assize of bread and ale in Mottisfont which they had of the grant of William Briwere. (fn. 10) In 1410 they complained that their lands, 'situate for the most part by the seashore,' were often attacked by Flemings, French and Normans and other enemies of the realm, for the defence of which men-at-arms from time to time lodged at the priory, consumed its animals and grain and plundered and carried away as booty other of its movable goods, wherefore the cultivators of the said fields had left them for the most part uncultivated. (fn. 11) The buildings of the priory were in want of repair, their serfs had died in the pestilence and all their manors, granges and houses were in ruin. (fn. 12) However, they continued to hold the manor of Mottisfont (fn. 13) until it was surrendered in 1536. (fn. 14) It was then as 'the manor of Mottisfont-cum-Ford' granted to William Lord Sandys, (fn. 15) and from that date has followed the same descent as the manor of Longstock Harrington (fn. 16) (q.v.), the present lady of the manor being Mrs. Vaudrey Barker-Mill, a descendant of Lord Sandys.

Considerable remains of the buildings of the priory of Holy Trinity, Mottisfont, exist owing to the fact that they have been used as a dwelling-house continuously since the suppression in 1536. William Lord Sandys, to whom the site was granted, converted the monastery into a country house, and in 1538 was keeping household in the house of John Atkinson, priest, to oversee his works. We are told that he was then ' making a goodly place of the priory and intends to live there most of his life.' (fn. 17) He died at Calais in 1540, and there is nothing to show whether his remodelling of the buildings was finished before his death. Generally speaking, he seems to have treated the priory much as Wriothesley did Titchfield, making the cloister the main court of the house, and reducing the buildings to rectangular blocks round it. The church was cut down to an oblong representing the nave and crossing, and the south transept was retained, while the north transept, presbytery and eastern chapels were destroyed and the upper part of the tower taken down. The treatment of the other buildings can only be conjectured from the analogy of Titchfield, as they are now nearly all destroyed, and their remains contain no work which can be assigned to Sandys. In the 18th century the house was brought to its present condition, the north or main wing of the house—the nave of the monastic church—being enlarged on the south side by a block of buildings covering the site of the north wall of the cloister with wings at either end partly within the area of the cloister and partly on the lines of the eastern and western ranges of the claustral buildings. The sub-vault of the western range was also preserved and still stands, and it is probable that all four ranges of the cloister survived till the date of these alterations. The late uncovering of the chapter-house clearly shows that such was the case with the eastern range, at any rate. The house as it stands to-day is a very picturesque building, the 18th-century additions being of a warm red brick partly covered with climbing plants, contrasting with the stone and plaster work of the main building. The site is low and close to one of the branches of the Test, the ground rising gently westward, very well timbered and with wide lawns covering the site of the monastic buildings, while to the south-west of the house is a strong spring which perhaps gave the name to the place.

The remains of the church consist of the nave, 118 ft. by 26 ft., the lower part of the central tower and the south transept. When complete there was doubtless a square-ended presbytery of the approximate size shown on the accompanying plan, with north and south chapels, the arch into the southern of which yet stands, a north transept, and, from the irregular spacing of the buttresses on the north of the nave, a north-east chapel to the nave. The west wall of the nave is much thinner than the rest and seems to have been rebuilt, and the whole has been cut up into two stories and windows and string-courses inserted by Lord Sandys. These are now much modernized, only those in the ground floor on the north side being of 16th-century design, with two four-centred lights and a transom under a square head, while the upper tier are 18th-century sash windows, and above them is a contemporary parapet, the buttresses ending above it in ball finials. The high-pitched red-tiled roof retains its old timbers, apparently anterior to Sandys' work, and great part of the substance of the walls, especially on the south side, belongs to the original monastic church. The details of the church show that it was carried on slowly from east to west, and are of late Romanesque character, together with the outer parlour, which seems to belong to the same build, but the chapterhouse and western range belong to the early years of the 13 th century and were evidently undertaken after the church was finished. The earliest work on the site may date from c. 1190, and the work at the south-west of the nave, a wall arcade with pointed arches and simple foliate capitals, can be little later, but the recorded date of foundation is given as 1201 in the annals of Oseney, and the consecration of the church, according to the Winchester Annals, was in 1224. The latter date need not affect the question, as churches often had to wait a long time after their completion before obtaining consecration, but the foundation date is more difficult to explain. It is possible that William Briwcre may not have been the original founder, but may have supplemented the endowment made by him, and have given a new foundation charter in consequence. The arrangements of the church are with one exception obliterated, but that exception is an important one, being the stone pulpitum which marks the west end of the canons' quire. It has a central four-centred arch with a panelled and traceried soffit, in which are set eight shields, the four on the south bearing the arms of Briwere the founder, Gules two bends wavy or; England with a label azure, for the Dukes of Lancaster; a cross of St. George; and a plain shield; while those on the north are, Patrick de Chaworth, Burelly argent and gules with an orle of martlets sable; Huttoft, Sable three dragons' heads razed argent; a castle and in base two letters H—; and a blank shield. These shields are a very interesting group and give the history of the priory in a concise form, mentioning the founder, William Briwere, Patrick de Chaworth, patron in the latter part of the 13th century, through the marriage of whose daughter Maud to Henry of Lancaster the patronage passed to the Earls of Lancaster, with whom it remained till the merging of the Duchy of Lancaster in the Crown in the person of Henry IV. The shield with a castle and two letters is that of a sheriff whose Christian name was Henry or the like, and who was probably sheriff of Hampshire or of Southampton; the only person who seems to fulfil the requirements of the case at the date shown by the style of the work is Henry Huttoft, sheriff of Southampton in 1521, and otherwise known to be connected with Mottisfont. This gives a date for the arch between 1521 and 1536. The nave of the church evidently had an internal wall arcade, of which eleven bays remain in part on the south side, with traces of a string-course above, and in several places higher in the wall parts of tall shafted lancets have been uncovered, some showing remains of contemporary colour decoration. It is evident that many more details are buried behind later plaster and panelling, and on the west face of the western tower arch a patch of well-preserved colour decoration has been exposed, suggesting that much more yet remains under the modern paint and limewashing. Both doorways from church to cloister remain, now blocked up, and a third doorway, from the south transept to the cloister, is still open. There is an arched opening in the pulpitum near the south end, which cannot have opened to anything but a wall-recess when the stalls were in position, but seems contemporary with the pulpitum.

Mottisfont Priory from the South

In the south wall of the south transept a piscina is yet to be seen, and a doorway has been broken through the wall into the remains of the chapter-house, now used as a dairy. The chapter-house was vaulted in three bays of three spans, the moulded wall ribs springing from Pur beck marble vaulting shafts, two of which remain in the dairy, and the corresponding pair against the south wall of the chapterhouse have lately been uncovered. Adjoining it on the south was the inner parlour, which had a barrel vault of rubble, and from its southeast corner a doorway opened to the sub-vault of the dorter. This was covered with a ribbed vault of two spans, with a row of round pillars down the centre and halfround responds at the walls. Little remains above ground beyond the northern bay, and it has evidently been purposely destroyed, as all the work lately uncovered shows no signs of having been exposed to the weather, the plaster of the walls and even traces of a band of colour being quite fresh when first exposed. The site till lately was occupied by a grass slope leading up to a French window on the first floor of the house, and the monastic buildings were evidently cut down at the time of the formation of this slope, the chapter-house which is under the higher part of the slope, being left standing to a little above the springing of its vault, while the parlour and dorter are cut down to a lower level. The floor of the chapter-house, and of the whole range, has evidently been raised at some time before this destruction, perhaps because of the dampness of the site, and the bench running round the chapter-house, as well as the greater part of the columns and responds of the sub-vault of the dorter, are still buried. In the north-west angle of the latter are the remains of a small staircase, entered not from the cloister but from the sub-vault, and evidently approached through the doorway at the south-east of the parlour. The way to the staircase was probably divided from the rest of the sub-vault by a wooden partition, as the respond in the middle of the north end of the subvault is cut back from a point just below its moulded capital, as if to give more room in a passage running close to the north wall. The stair in question can hardly be other than the day stair to the dorter, which usually opens directly to the cloister, but for some reason was otherwise planned in the present instance.

Mottisfont Priory from the North-west

Nothing of the southern range of buildings now remains above ground; it must have contained the frater, with the kitchen to the west and probably the warming-house to the east. The sub-vault of the western range is fortunately perfect, and is a fine room 57 ft. by 26 ft., covered with a ribbed vault in two spans springing from half-round responds and a central row of round pillars with moulded capitals; the bases here, as in the eastern range, are buried. In the west wall are remains of three original windows, and in the east wall are two plain door ways. The kitchen must have stood to the south of the range, but was probably divided from it by an entry, and at the north end of the range, adjoining the church, is the outer parlour, a barrel-vaulted passage 15 ft. wide, with a round-headed archway at the west, of late 12th-century date: its eastern arch is of much later date and out of centre with the passage. The site of the outlying buildings of the priory, such as the infirmary, is unknown, but the whole plan could doubtless be recovered by excavation.

At the present day the principal entrance to the house is in the south end of the west wing, with a terrace in front of it over the sub-vault of the western range of the monastic buildings, and there are several good rooms in the main block, some of the 16th-century fireplaces set in the south wall of the church being still to be seen. There is some excellent oak panelling, but none of the fittings other than fireplaces belong to Sandys' time, with the possible exception of a very interesting achievement of his arms in needlework.

The manor afterwards known as MOTTISFONT TREASURY was represented in 1086 by 5 hides of land less 1 virgate in the manor of Mottisfont appurtenant to the church of Mottisfont, which were held by Thomas, Archbishop of York, and had been held by Archbishop Aldred of King Edward. (fn. 18) In the 13 th century this manor formed part of the revenues of the treasurer of York Cathedral, (fn. 19) and his successors held it (fn. 20) until it fell to the Crown on the suppression of that office in 1547. (fn. 21) In the same year Edward VI granted it to Edward Duke of Somerset, (fn. 22) on whose execution and attainder in 1551–2 it again passed to the Crown. (fn. 23) In 1589 Queen Elizabeth granted it to John Willes and Richard Paice of London, (fn. 24) who sold it two years later to Sir Walter Sandys. (fn. 25) It passed by inheritance (fn. 26) in 1629 to William Lord Sandys, lord of the manor of Mottisfont (q.v.), the descent of which it has since followed.

Sandys, Lord Sandys. Argent a ragged cross sable.

In 1351 Edward III by charter granted John de Wynwyk, treasurer of York Cathedral, and his successors a market every Wednesday at Mottisfont, and two yearly fairs—one on the eve, day and morrow of the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle, and the other on the eve, day and morrow of the Feast of St. Philip and St. James. (fn. 27)

At the time of the Domesday Survey William the Archer and Osmund held in chief two estates each gelding at half a hide in BENTLEY (fn. 28) (Beneclei, Beneclege, xi cent.; Benetleia, Benetleg, xiii cent.; Bentelegh, xiv cent.), a district in the north-west of the parish. Osmund had held his estate before the Conquest; that of William the Archer had been held by Alwi as an alod of Edward the Confessor.

The latter estate, known later as the manor of GREAT BENTLEY, was subsequently annexed to the manor of Sibbertoft (fn. 29) (co. Northants) and was held with it by the serjeanty of finding one footsoldier, with hauberk, bow and arrows, to serve within the realm for forty days. (fn. 30) The Archer family held it until early in the 13th century, (fn. 31) when William the Archer of Sibbertoft granted it to William de Brikeville, who apparently already had some right in the manor for a yearly rent of half a mark of silver for all service saving the royal service. (fn. 32)

William was followed by Richard de Brikeville, (fn. 33) and a Thomas de Brikeville, possibly son of Richard, was holding in 1316. (fn. 34) In 1329 a William de Brikeville dealt by fine with two messuages, 2 carucates of land and 40s. rent in Bentley, East Tytherley, Broughton, Awbridge and Kimbridge. (fn. 35) Seven years later Alice wife of Thomas Payn died seised of a carucate of land and pleas and perquisites of court in Bentley, Broughton and East Tytherley, which she held for life of the inheritance of William de Putton, a minor in the king's wardship. (fn. 36) The same year the king granted this land in custody to John Scotney for a rent of 67s. 1½d. (fn. 37) In 1338 John son of Thomas de Brikeville impleaded William son of William de Putton for a messuage and 2 carucates of land in Bentley, (fn. 38) and still prosecuted the suit in 1343, (fn. 39) but the decision of the judges is not extant. William de Putton the minor came of age next year, when he was holding one messuage and 1 carucate of land in Bentley, Broughton and East Tytherley with pleas and perquisites of court. (fn. 40) From this date the manor possibly followed the descent of East Tytherley (q.v.). It was, at all events, purchased about 1822 under the name of Great Bentley by Sir Isaac Lyon Goldsmid and passed like his moiety of East Tytherley to the present owner, Captain F. J. Dalgety. (fn. 41)

It is probable that Osmund's holding in Bentley was at some date purchased by the owner of Compton Monceux Manor in the parish of King's Somborne, (fn. 42) and if so it is represented by the half a hide of land in ' Bencifeld' (sic) which Richard de Pershute was holding at the beginning of the 13th century of the old enfeoffment of William de Monceux, lord of Compton Monceux. (fn. 43) In 1249 this same Richard granted half a hide of land in Bentley, excepting pasture, called Thornhull, to Nicholas de Bossington and his wife Joan, to hold for life at a rent of 2s. and 1 lb. of cummin. (fn. 44) Richard was followed by Nicholas de Pershute, who held the property until his death in 1327, (fn. 45) when he was followed by his son and heir Peter. (fn. 46) Peter obtained licence to have mass celebrated in the oratory of his house in the parish of Mottisfont, (fn. 47) and died seised of the manor of Bentley, which he held of the heirs of William Fiennes, late lord of Compton Monceux, in 1361, leaving as his heir his son Nicholas. (fn. 48) The history of the manor is identical with that of Shelveley in Eling (q.v.) until the death of Edmund Erneley in 1485, (fn. 49) and it may subsequently have merged in the manor of Great Bentley.

William the Archer granted land in BENTLEY which had been held of him by Robert the Wheelwright to the priory of Mottisfont, and his gift was confirmed by Henry III in 1227. (fn. 50) The prior and convent continued to hold this land until the Dissolution and may have acquired other land there, for in 1536 their manor of BENTLEY, afterwards called LITTLE BENTLEY, was granted to William Lord Sandys with the rest of their possessions. (fn. 51) From this date it followed the same descent as the manor of Mottisfont (q.v.) until 1671, (fn. 52) when Henry Lord Sandys combined with John Hutchins, who held a lease of the manor, in conveying it to Nicholas Blake to the use of Peter Blake. (fn. 53) Peter Blake died about the beginning of 1692, leaving his estates to his son Peter. (fn. 54) The latter only survived his father a year, and the property passed in accordance with his will to his sister Sarah, the wife of Edmund Lambert of Boyton (fn. 55) (co. Wilts.).

Lambert of Boyton. Argent a bend engrailed between two lions sable, with three rings argent on the bend.

The family of Lambert continued to hold the manor until 1778, (fn. 56) when Edward Lambert sold it to George Jennings, whose family continued in possession until 1866. (fn. 57) At this date Mr. Jennings sold it to Mr. F. G. Dalgety, father of the present owner, Captain F. J. Dalgety. (fn. 58)

The so-called manor of MOUNT alias MOUNT HYDE (La Hyde, xv cent.; MOUNT LA HYDE, xvi cent.) was held by Sir Walter Romsey in 1316, (fn. 59) and from this date it followed the same descent as the manor of Romsey Horseys in Romsey (q.v.) until about 1537, (fn. 60) when William Horsey conveyed it to Sir Richard Lister. (fn. 61) Sir Richard died seised in 1559, leaving as his heir his grandson Richard son of Sir Michael Lister. (fn. 62) The manor changed hands soon after, and in 1570 was conveyed by Andrew Reade and others to Nicholas Scroope, (fn. 63) who in 1584 joined with Andrew Reade in conveying it to William Lord Sandys. (fn. 64) From this date it followed the same descent as the manor of Mottisfont (fn. 65) (q.v.). The site is marked at the present day by Mount Farm and Hyde Farm, both situated in the southern extremity of the parish.

Land in CADBURY (Kadebiry and Cadebiri, xiii cent.; Caddebury, xvi cent.) in Mottisfont was granted by William Briwere to the priory, (fn. 66) and followed the same descent as the manor of Mottisfont (fn. 67) (q.v.). It is represented at the present time by Cadbury Farm in the west of the parish, the property of Mrs. Vaudrey Barker-Mill.

A messuage and land in OAKLEY (Hacle, xiii cent.; Ockelee, Okle, xiv cent.; Okelee, xv cent.) in Mottisfont, which may perhaps be identified with the 'Hotlop' (fn. 68) of Domesday Book, were held of the king in chief by Hugh le Queynte (probably Quintin) at his death in 1308. (fn. 69) His son and heir John (fn. 70) granted one messuage and I carucate of land in Oakley by Mottisfont, pasture in Oakley meadow and pannage for thirty swine in Buckholt Wood to Peter le Tannere and Margery his wife for life, with reversion to Adam de Bukesgate and Eugenia his wife, in 1332. (fn. 71) This estate subsequently followed for a considerable time the same descent as the Bukesgate moiety of the manor of West Tytherley (fn. 72) (q.v,), but in 1539 was apparently in the possession of a certain Thomas Welles. (fn. 73) It is represented at the present day by Oakley Farm, a short distance north of the village.

There was a mill at Oakley in the 13th century, (fn. 74) and in the 14th century there is mention of a watermill and a fulling-mill. (fn. 75)

The manor of DUNBRIDGE (Denebridge, xi cent.; Denebrugg, xi cent.; Dunebrigg and Donbrig, xiv cent.; Dunbrigg, xv cent.) was held in 1086 by Gilbert de Breteville and had been held before the Conquest by Chening. (fn. 76) Nothing further is known of the property until 1346, when John Kenne, Nicholas Wyard and Peter Dunbridge were holding half a knight's fee in Pittleworth and Dunbridge. (fn. 77) By 1428 this property had come into the possession of John Uvedale, lord of the manor of Pittleworth in Bossington parish, (fn. 78) and Dunbridge doubtless followed the same descent as that manor (q.v.). The site is marked by Dunbridge Farm in the south-west of the parish near the Old Canal.

The manor of KIMBRIDGE(Kyngbrigg, xiii and xiv cent.; Kymbrigge, xv cent.) was held in the 13th century of the manor of East Tytherley. (fn. 79) It was said in 1474–5 to be held of the manor of Michelmersh, (fn. 80) but in 1638–9 the manor of Kimbridge was held of the manor of East Tytherley, while certain land there called Pollins (fn. 81) was held of the manor of Michelmersh. (fn. 82)

In the middle of the 13th century half a fee in Kimbridge and West Tytherley was held by Lambert de Saumo, John de 'Okingbrig' and Christine de 'Kingbrig.' (fn. 83) The manor had probably been held at the beginning of the century by the family of Kimbridge, for Michael de Kimbridge was a witness to a deed of earlier date than 1229. (fn. 84) In 1316 Thomas Polayn held the manor, which had previously belonged to Matthew Polayn. (fn. 85) The manor remained in the Polayn family, probably passing from Amice Polayn, who died in 1349, to her son John, (fn. 86) and from him to his son, a second John, who died about 1412–13. (fn. 87) His heir was his niece Rose wife of John Fish, daughter of Christine Holewelle, (fn. 88) but it is not known whether she ever held the manor. John Canterton died in 1473–4 holding the manor of Kimbridge, which had been settled upon him and his wife Alice and their issue. (fn. 89) The manor appears to have descended to the Canterton family (fn. 90) until about 1607–8, when it was probably sold by John Canterton to John Herring. (fn. 91) John died in 1637, and the manor passed to his son John. (fn. 92) William Herring was in possession of the manor in 1679, (fn. 93) but it had passed before 1766 to Thomas Lee Dummer, (fn. 94) and has since descended in the same way as North Baddesley (fn. 95) (q.v.) to Mr. Tankerville Chamberlayne, the present owner.

Plan of Mottisfont Church


The church of ST. ANDREW consists of a chancel 27 ft. 10½ in. by 16 ft. 9 in., a nave 51 ft. 6 in. by 18 ft. 11 in., and a south porch. The greater part of the church belongs to the first half of the 12th century, and, except for the introduction of a few windows, it appears to have remained unaltered until the 15th century, when the chancel was partly rebuilt and lengthened eastward, and the nave was probably lengthened westward at the same time, or perhaps late in the 14th century. The church was reroofed about the beginning of the 16th century. The bell-cot was restored in the 19th century. The whole church is plastered externally and internally.

The two-centred east window of the chancel is of mid-15th-century date, and has three cinquefoiled lights with tracery. In the north wall is a window of similar date of two cinquefoiled lights with a quatrefoil ever. An identical window in the south wall is now blocked up. At the west of both north and south walls are early 14th-century windows of two trefoiled lights with a quatrefoil over, probably set in part of the older chancel wall. Between the two windows on the north is a small priest's door with a pointed head, and on the south is a square-headed mid-15th-century window with tracery. The flat pointed rear arch and jambs are continuously moulded, and stopped with small octagonal moulded bases. The 12th-century chancel arch has a single square order on the east, but on the west two moulded orders, the outer enriched with zigzag. It is supported on circular shafts with moulded and spurred bases, cushion capitals (one of which with the abacus over is restored), and moulded abaci now somewhat mutilated but originally mitred round the imposts. The section of the abaci is of the same character as that of the string-course beneath the windows in the eastern parts of Romsey Abbey Church.

The nave is lit on the north by a 14th-century window. Partly under it is a tomb recess of the same date with a moulded two-centred head. Opposite in the south wall is a window identical in date and design, under which is a square recess with a piscina drain. A little to the west of the piscina is another tomb recess, also of 14th-century date, with a slightly ogee-moulded head and a scroll-moulded label. At the south-west is a two-light window of uncertain date. The south door in the middle of the wall is of 12th-century date, with a round head of one order, and an edge chamfer which is probably an addition. There was probably a north door opposite to it, which cannot now be seen. The south porch is of late date and of brick, rough cast. The west window is of the 15 th century, with a two-centred head. The west door is of late 14th-century date and continuously moulded with a double ogee of early section and has an external label.

The font has a Purbeck marble bowl, much retooled, but perhaps of the 12th century, on a modern stem and base.

The roofs are both old, but that of the nave is quite plain and undatable. That of the chancel is probably of late 15th-century date, and has a moulded wall plate and two curiously cambered tie-beams. The bell-cot is over the west end of the nave. It is quite plain, has recently been reshingled and has a pyramidal tiled roof. It is supported upon trusses carried by six strutted wall posts within the nave. The communion table is of early 17th-century date.

On the south wall of the chancel are a monument of Renaissance detail, with the date 1584 and the initials I. M. on shields held by putti, and kneeling figures of a man in civilian dress, his wife, one son and two daughters, the figure of the eldest son being broken away. No trace of the original colouring remains.

In the floor of the chancel is a brass plate to William Sandys, 1628, with his arms, a ragged cross quartered with a cheveron between three birds' claws razed and bendy vair and (? gules). The inscription tells that he preferred to be buried here ad fontem on his own land to sharing his ancestors' tomb ad vitem at the Vyne. In the south wall of the nave is inserted a stone carved with two shields on a draped canopy. A modern inscription below records that the church of St. Michael at Bremen was built 1693 by Daniel Meinertzhagen and Bruno Heilman, senators of the free city of Bremen, and that at its rebuilding in 1898 the carved stone was removed and sent by the senate of Bremen to the English descendants of Daniel Meinertzhagen. The dexter shield bears a bend with a molet thereon, and above it is the crest, a pair of wings with a molet on each. The other shield bears six fruit trees and over all a bend with three bunches of grapes thereon and has a like tree as crest.

The east window is completely filled with 15th-century white and gold glass, generally said to have been brought from the Holy Ghost Chapel near Basingstoke, and made out with new glass. The style, however, is entirely unlike that of the glass now in Basingstoke Church, which is known to have been in the chapel. In the centre light is the Crucifixion with the figures of our Lady and St. John on a red background. In the side lights are figures of St. Peter and St. Andrew on blue backgrounds, with their names below in modern capitals. In the two smaller lights over is the coronation of our Lady between St. John and St. Katharine with seraphs standing on wheels in the outer lights, and in the head, with figures of angels swinging censers in the small side lights. The figures are excellently drawn and the colouring extremely fine. The 15th-century two-light window on the south of the chancel also contains some contemporary white and gold fragments, probably St. Michael, St. Katharine and a bishop, and a number of quarries, each ornamented with a single floral form. In the two windows at the west of the chancel are some fragments of late 14th-century glass, that to the north containing a nearly complete and splendidly drawn head of Christ. There has been a like head on the south, but the red borders charged with gold lis in the heads of the main lights were not designed for their present position. In the north-east window are more fragments of this and other borders.

The bell-cot contains five bells. The treble bears the churchwardens' names and the date 1675. The second was cast by William Tozier in 1718. The third is marked F.F.R.V. 1663. The fourth is dated 1678, and the fifth was recast in 1891.

The plate consists of a silver chalice probably of 1586, the gift of John Howorth, rector, and a silver paten of 1707, the gift of the Rev. Oliver D'Oyley St. John in 1830.

The registers are contained in four books. The first contains baptisms and burials from 1701 to 1761 and marriages from 1701 to 1723, with a few later entries, in part copied from an earlier paper register. The second contains marriages after a gap, from 1754 to 1788, and the third marriages from 1789 to 1812. The fourth contains baptisms and burials from 1788 to 1812.


The advowson of the church of Mottisfont with the dependent chapelries of Broughton, Pittleworth, East Dean, East and West Tytherley and Lockerley, followed the descent of the manor of Mottisfont Treasury (fn. 96) (q.v.) till it was forfeited to the Crown by the attainder of Edward Duke of Somerset. In 1586 it was granted by Queen Elizabeth to Christopher Hatton, (fn. 97) but before 1628 it had passed to Sir William Sandys. (fn. 98) Henry Danvers Earl of Danby presented to the living in 1640, and Henry Marquess of Dorchester in 1664, (fn. 99) and the latter sold the advowson in 1673 to William Thompson. (fn. 100)

Thirty-six years later the latter conveyed it to Francis Annesley, from whom it passed by sale to William Gibbon in 1720. (fn. 101) The trustees of the South Sea Company were the next patrons of the living, selling the advowson in 1726 to John Fuller, whose devisees, Thomas, John, Frances and Rose Fuller, conveyed it in 1764 to Sir Brian BroughtonDelves, bart. (fn. 102) Lady Broughton-Delves sold the advowson in 1766 after the death of her husband to Mr. Goodyer St. John, by whose family it continued to be held until 1884, when the Rev. Paulet St. John sold it to Captain F. G. Dalgety, from whom it was purchased the following year by Mrs. Vaudrey Barker-Mill, the present patron.

The Baptist chapel at Spearywell, 1½ miles west, was built in 1860.

The National school at Mottisfont was opened in 1872 and enlarged in 1889. (fn. 103)

There are apparently no endowed charities in the parish.


  • 1. V.C.H. Hants, ii, 465.
  • 2. Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
  • 3. Chan. Proc. (Ser. 2), bdle. 80, no. 41.
  • 4. W. and L. Inq. p.m. xliii, 96.
  • 5. V.C.H. Hants, i, 468b It may include a messuage held as an alod by Eddulf of the king in 1086 (ibid. 506b).
  • 6. Ibid. ii, 172b.
  • 7. Cal. Rot. Chart. (Rec. Com.), i, 139. This grant was confirmed by Hugh de Coluncis, apparently as overlord, and he quitclaimed at the same time to the priory the service due from the eighth part of a knight's fee owed to him by William Briwere (Dugdale, Mon. vi, 482).
  • 8. Cal. Rot. Chart. (Rec. Com.), i, 139.
  • 9. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 41.
  • 10. Cal. Pat. 1343–5. P. 547; Inq. a.q.d. file 227, no. 15.
  • 11. Cal. Papal Letters, vi, 200.
  • 12. Ibid.
  • 13. Feud. Aids, ii, 311.
  • 14. V.C.H. Hants, ii, 175.
  • 15. Pat. 28 Hen. VIII, pt. i, m. 9. An annual rent of £51, which Lord Sandys was bound to pay for the manor and site of the priory, was granted to him for life in 1540 (L. and P. Hen. VIII, xv, p. 541). Queen Anne, consort of James I, obtained a grant of this rent in 1613 (Pat. 11 Jas. I, pt. xiii, no. 4).
  • 16. W. and L. Inq. p.m. lxix, 200; Feet of F. Div. Co. Trin. 1657; Rccov. R. East. 33 Chas. II, rot. 158. Sir Thomas Gatehouse MS. Surv. of Hants (1778) penes Lord Swaythling; Feet of F. Hants, East. 18 Geo. III.
  • 17. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiii (2), 176.
  • 18. V.C.H. Hants, i, 468b. See Dugdale, Mon. viii, 1177. One hide of this land, which had been taken by the king's reeves, was restored by William I to the archbishop (ibid.).
  • 19. Pope Nich. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 215.
  • 20. Feud. Aids, ii, 311; Mins. Accts. bdle. 979, no. 4.
  • 21. Dict. Nat. Biog. under William Clyffe.
  • 22. Pat. 1 Edw. VI, pt. vii, m. 7.
  • 23. G.E.C. Complete Peerage, vii, 174.
  • 24. Pat. 32 Eliz. pt. xv, m. 16.
  • 25. Close, 33 Eliz. pt. xv.
  • 26. See Feet of F. Div. Co. Mich. 4 Edw. VI; W. and L. Inq. p.m. xliii, 96; Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 7 Jas. I; Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cccclxxxvi, 121.
  • 27. Chart. R. 25 Edw. III, m. 12.
  • 28. V.C.H. Hants, i, 499a, 505b.
  • 29. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 100.
  • 30. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 235.
  • 31. Ibid.; Feet of F. Hants, East. 15 John; Rot. Lit. Claus. (Rec. Com.), i, 412.
  • 32. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 100; Excerpta e Rot. Fin. (Rec. Com.), i, 33; Rot. Lit. Claus. (Rec. Com.), i, 396b. This grant was confirmed by Richard le Archer in 1234 (Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 18 Hen. III).
  • 33. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 232.
  • 34. Feud. Aids, ii, 311.
  • 35. Feet of F. Hants, Mich. 3 Edw. III.
  • 36. Inq. p.m. 10 Edw. III, no. 26.
  • 37. Abbrev. Rot. Orig, (Rec Com,), ii, 107. See also Inq. Nonarum, 111.
  • 38. Cal. Close, 1337–9, p. 397.
  • 39. Ibid. 1343–6, p. 103.
  • 40. Inq. p.m. 18 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 22.
  • 41. Ex inform. Capt. F. J. Dalgety.
  • 42. Probably at a date when that manor was still held by the Archer family. It was likewise held by William the Archer in 1086 (V.C.H. Hants, i, 499a), but war subsequently alienated.
  • 43. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 234.
  • 44. Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 33 Hen. III.
  • 45. Cal. Pat. 1301–7, p. 518; Feud. Aids, ii, 311.
  • 46. Inq. p.m. 1 Edw. III (1st nos.), no. 10.
  • 47. Egerton MSS. 2032, fol. no; 2033, fol. 57.
  • 48. Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III, pt. ii (1st nos.), no. 26.
  • 49. Ibid. 17 Edw. IV, no. 3; Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), i, 96.
  • 50. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 40.
  • 51. Pat. 28 Hen. VIII, pt. i, m. 9.
  • 52. Feet of F. Div. Co. Mich. 4 Edw.VI; Recov. R. Hil. 14 Eliz. rot. 127; Feet of F. Hants, East. 15 Eliz.; Recov. R. Mich. 42 Eliz. rot. 172; Trin. 23 Chas. II, rot. 152.
  • 53. Ex inform. Mr. R. Robey from deeds penes Capt. F. J. Dalgety; Recov. R. Trin. 23 Chas. II, rot. 152.
  • 54. P.C.C. Will 23 Fane; Recov. R. Hil. 4 & 5 Will, and Mary, rot. 165.
  • 55. P.C.C. Will 25 Box; Recov. R. Hil. 5 Will. and Mary, rot. 59.
  • 56. Ibid. East. 7 Geo. II, rot. 262; Trin. 10 Geo. III, rot. 387.
  • 57. Ex inform. Mr. R. Robey from deeds penes Capt. F. J. Dalgety.
  • 58. Ibid.
  • 59. Feud. Aids, ii, 311.
  • 60. Inq. p.m. 5 Hen. IV, no. 32; 6 Hen. IV, no. 29; 19 Hen. VI, no. 36; 17 Edw. IV, no. 46; Recov. R. Trin. 8 Hen. VIII, rot. 311.
  • 61. Ibid. 29 Hen. VIII, rot. 353; Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 29 Hen. VIII.
  • 62. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cxxiv, 222.
  • 63. Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 12 Eliz.
  • 64. Ibid. Mich. 26 & 27 Eliz.
  • 65. W. and L. Inq. p.m. lxix, 200; Recov. R. East. 33 Chas. II, rot. 158; Hil. 26 Geo. III, rot. 301.
  • 66. Cal Rot. Chart. (Rec. Com.), i, 139. This grant was confirmed by Hugh de Coluncis, apparently as overlord (Dugdale, Mon. vi, 482).
  • 67. Pat. 28 Hen. VIII, pt. i, m. 9.
  • 68. In 1086 'Hotlop' paid geld for 1 hide, and was held by a certain Agemund of the king (V.C.H. Hants, i, 506).
  • 69. Inq. p.m. 1 Edw. II, no. 40. In 1254 Henry III had claimed 3 acres, worth 6s. yearly, in Oakley from Richard le Queynte, on the ground that they had been alienated from the serjeanty of West Tytherley (Inq. p.m. 38 Hen. III, no. 8). The same Richard, or his namesake, acquired two messuages and land in Mottisfont from William le Hayward and Maud his wife in 1281 (Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 9 Edw. I).
  • 70. Cal. Pat. 1307–13, p. 66.
  • 71. Inq. a.q.d. file 213, no. 15; Pat. 5 Edw. III, pt. ii, m. 16; Feet of F. Hants, Trin. 6 Edw. III.
  • 72. Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III, pt. i, no. 15, 24, 74; Cal. Pat. 1377–81, p. 64; Inq. a.q.d. file 393, no. 25; Inq. p.m. 1 Ric. II, no. 158; 20 Ric. II, no. 10; 22 Ric. II, no. 6; 6 Hen. VI, no. 50; 38 & 39 Hen. VI, no. 57.
  • 73. Mins. Accts.Wilts.30 & 31 Hen.VIII, rot. 150, m. 86 d.
  • 74. Dugdale, Mon. vi, 482.
  • 75. Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III, pt. i, no. 74.
  • 76. V.C.H. Hants, i, 495a.
  • 77. Feud. Aids, ii, 324.
  • 78. Ibid. 350. The estate is described as half a knight's fee in Pittleworth and Dunbridge (ibid.).
  • 79. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 233. Matthew de Columbars, lord of East Tytherley, held the estate of the Marshal and he of the Earl of Devon, who held of the king. The Earl of Devon's interest seems to have passed, perhaps with Carisbrooke Castle, to William de Montagu Earl of Salisbury, for he died in 1397 holding half a fee in Kimbridge and West Tytherley (Chan. Inq. p.m. 20 Ric. II, no. 35).
  • 80. Ibid. 13 Edw. IV, no. 29.
  • 81. This retains the name Polayn, of former owners of the manor.
  • 82. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), dlxiii, 130.
  • 83. Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 233.
  • 84. Cal. Chart. R. 1226–57, p. 100.
  • 85. Feud. Aids, ii, 323.
  • 86. Chan. Inq. p.m. 23 Edw III, pt. ii, no. 142.
  • 87. Cussans, in his Hist. of Herts. Broadwater Hund. 243, gives the date of John's death as 1414, but Margaret, who was the wife of John Polayn of Kimbridge, is mentioned in 1412–13 (Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 14 Hen. IV).
  • 88. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Broadwater Hund. 243.
  • 89. Chan. Inq. p.m. 13 Edw. IV, no. 29.
  • 90. Feet of F. Hants, Hil. 2 Edw. VI; Pat. 32 Eliz. pt. xv, m. 16.
  • 91. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), dlxiii, 130.
  • 92. Ibid.; Fine R. 15 Chas. I, pt. ii, no. 53.
  • 93. Recov. R. Trin. 31 Chas. II, rot. 19.
  • 94. Ibid. East. 6 Geo. III, rot. 173.
  • 95. Ibid. Trin. 1 Will. IV, rot. 163; see V.C.H. Hants, iii, 464.
  • 96. V.C.H. Hants, i, 468b. See Dugdale, Mon. viii, 1177. The chapelries of Lockerley and East Dean continued to be dependent on the parish of Mottisfont until 1884 (Order in Council, Dec. 1884). For a long time pensions from the churches of Broughton and East and West Tytherley were paid to the treasurer of York Cathedral, the patron of Mottisfont.
  • 97. Pat. 28 Eliz. pt. iii.
  • 98. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cccclxxxvi, 121.
  • 99. Inst. Bks. (P.R.O.).
  • 100. Ex inform. Rev. C. Edwards, M.A., rector of Mottisfont, and Mr. R. Robey.
  • 101. Ibid.
  • 102. Ibid.
  • 103. V.C.H. Hants, ii, 401.