Angerton Moss

Pages 408-409

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1914.

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Angherton, 1277; Angerton, 1299.

This extra-parochial district has an area of 2,195 acres, of which more than half, viz. 1,120½ acres, is tidal water. (fn. 1) It occupies a tract of flat mossy land between Kirkby Pool on the east and the Duddon on the west. The population in 1901 was 27. The Furness railway line crosses it. There are 188 acres of arable land, 258 of permanent grass and 5 of woods and plantations, a large part being waste. The soil is sand and moss peat on sand and clay subsoil.


ANGERTON MOSS was originally in Broughton, but being granted to the monks of Furness was probably treated by them as part of their demesne and so became extra-parochial. (fn. 2) A number of the charters relating to it are preserved in the Coucher of the abbey. Alan de Kirkby in 1235 had pasture lands between Welpesat and Steerspool in Broughton, and agreed to pay Simon son of Matthew 4s. a year instead of 2s. for a quitclaim of Simon's right of pasture there. (fn. 3) Richard son of Simon de Broughton granted to Thomas Skilhare of Dalton the whole of Angerton Moss which Ralph son of Alan son of Orm de Kirkby had formerly held; the bounds began at a rock called Quelpesatcrag and went by the Duddon, Steerspool and Otterpool to the head of the last and thence across to the starting-point. A rent of 5s. was to be paid to the lord, and the said Ralph and Sir John Kirkby had rights of turbary. (fn. 4) After due inquiry (fn. 5) the king's licence was in 1299 granted allowing the alienation to the abbey. (fn. 6) A fishery in Steerspool had been allowed to Ralph son of Alan by Sir John de Kirkby, (fn. 7) and was granted by Ralph's son Adam to Adam de Bardsey and Isabel his wife, (fn. 8) and the rights of these families in Angerton Moss were afterwards yielded to the abbey. (fn. 9) Various confirmations were secured, and the Moss remained in the monks' possession down to the Suppression. An arbitration in 1424 awarded the soil absolutely to the abbey, but 80 loads of turf were to be allowed each year to Sir Richard Kirkby. (fn. 10) It was after 1537 granted on lease by the Crown, (fn. 11) until in 1608 it was sold to Edward Wilson, (fn. 12) probably acting for John Preston of the Manor.

In 1545 the king ordered a perambulation of the bounds of Angerton Moss and an inquiry into encroachments, rights of turbary and pasture, and the fisheries of Duddon and Steerspool. Richard Kirkby had made a fishgarth to the injury of a meadow there. (fn. 13) An ancient plan of the Moss is preserved at the Record Office, (fn. 14) probably accompanying the award made. (fn. 15) There were subsequent disputes over the turbary and fishing rights. (fn. 16) The Earl of Derby in 1586, as lord of the manor of Broughton, said that certain sands adjoining the water of Duddon Weir were among the appurtenances of the manor, and he and his ancestors had ever had a free fishing there; but that within the previous thirty years, owing to the continual inundation and power of the sea, the sands had been raised and made firm land, which was called Angerton Marsh. The tenants of Thomas Preston, the farmer of the queen's lands, had, so the earl complained, wrongfully obtained leases of part of this new marsh, pretending that it was part of 'a great parcel of ground in Broughton called Angerton Moss,' which belonged to the queen. (fn. 17)


  • 1. The Census Rep. of 1901 gives 918 acres, including 2 of inland water, 104 acres of tidal water and 1,402 of foreshore.
  • 2. In 1535 the abbey had rents of 28s. 4d. from it; Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 269.
  • 3. Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 60. Ralph son of Alan son of Orm gave land in Angerton Moss to Sir Richard de Broughton in 1272; Kuerden MSS. ii, fol. 212. Whelpshead Crag is marked on modern maps.
  • 4. Furness Couch. (Chet Soc), ii, 325; Ralph de Kirkby had a right to turf for burning in his own house and material for covering his buildings, while Sir John could take sixty wagon loads of turf a year from the moss. It seems that Thomas Skilhare received the land in part as compensation for another piece which Richard de Broughton had warranted, but which was recovered by Adam son of Ralph de Kirkby in 1292; ibid. 327, 338; Assize R. 408, m. 68 d.
  • 5. Furness Couch, ii, 328; Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 302.
  • 6. Furness Couch, ii, 329–32, 334; Cal. Pat. 1292–1301, p. 422. Thomas Skilhare's charter is in the British Museum (Harl. Chart. 55 G, 48); on the back is an endorsement stating that he died in 1304, and was father of Hugh, formerly Abbot of Furness.
  • 7. Furness Couch, ii, 320; the grant was for the benefit of Ralph's son Adam. In return Ralph allowed Sir John to take from Angerton Moss the sixty wagon loads of turf which have been mentioned before.
  • 8. Ibid. 323; a moiety of the fishery of Steerspool and forty (or sixty) loads of turf from Angerton Moss are mentioned.
  • 9. Alan son of Ralph de Kirkby released his right in the moss to Thomas Skilhare; ibid. 324. Richard de Broughton also gave a release, but stipulated for the 5s. rent; ibid. 332. John son of Sir Roger de Lancaster and Sir John de Hudleston did likewise; ibid. 335, 336. Adam son of Ralph de Kirkby later gave to William de Cockerham, vicar of Dalton, the land in Angerton Moss he had recovered from Thomas de Skilhare, and Galiena his widow released her dower right therein; ibid. 337–8. Adam son of William de Bardsey gave up his right in Broadmeadow and Adam de Hudleston released his forty wagon loads of turf; ibid. 339. Nicholas de Broughton and John son of Sir Robert de Harrington, as superior lords, gave permission for the alienation, and in 1329 the king having ordered an inquiry it was found that it would not be to his loss to allow it; ibid. 341–2; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, ii, 233. Adam aon of Ralph de Kirkby had in 1312–13 given to Adam de Hudleston and Joan his wife the right to take forty loads of turf yearly from Angerton Moss; Kuerden MSS. ii, fol. 211b. John de Kirkby in 1362 gave to Thomas de Kirkby tofts called Cowriddings and Scarthbridge, and twenty loads of turf on Angerton Moss; ibid.
  • 10. Duchy of Lanc. Misc. Bks. xxv, 15; printed by Beck, Annales Furnes. 294.
  • 11. Leases of two portions by Queen Elizabeth are recorded in the Survey of 1649. The land was measured by the rod of 24 ft.; West, Furness (ed. 1774), 174–5.
  • 12. Pat. 6. Jas. I, pt. ii. The 1649 surveyors were told that the late Sir John Preston or his father had purchased the 124 acres of pasture and turbary in Angerton Moss in fee farm, but the grant was not produced; West, op. cit. 177. There were, however, later grants; e.g. in 1610 to George Whitmore and others for sixty years, and in 1628 to Edward Ditchfield and others; Pat. 8 Jas. I, pt. xxxvii; 4 Chas. I, pt. xxxiii.
  • 13. Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 89.
  • 14. Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 24.
  • 15. Ibid, ii, 280.
  • 16. Ducatus Lanc, iii, 176, 185, &c.; Duchy of Lanc. Spec. Com. 379 (1585).
  • 17. Duchy of Lanc. Plead. Eliz, cxxix. D 4.