Lawley: Manors and other estates

A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1985.

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A P Baggs. D C Cox. Jessie McFall. P A Stamper. A J L Winchester, 'Lawley: Manors and other estates', in A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985) pp. 277-278. British History Online [accessed 28 May 2024].

A P Baggs. D C Cox. Jessie McFall. P A Stamper. A J L Winchester. "Lawley: Manors and other estates", in A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985) 277-278. British History Online, accessed May 28, 2024,

Baggs, A P. Cox, D C. McFall, Jessie. Stamper, P A. Winchester, A J L. "Lawley: Manors and other estates", A History of the County of Shropshire: Volume 11, Telford, (London, 1985). 277-278. British History Online. Web. 28 May 2024,


There were originally two manors called LAWLEY, which had passed by 1300 into the same demesne lordship and came to be regarded as one manor. The larger manor was held in 1086 of Earl Roger by Turold of Vesly, and of Turold by Hunnit, who is likely to have held it in 1066. As with other manors, Turold's mesne lordship appears to have passed to the Chetwynds, who evidently held their fee, following the extinction of the earldom of Shrewsbury, of the FitzAlans and whose undertenants were the descendants of the AngloSaxon Toret. (fn. 1) John of Chetwynd was lord of part of Lawley in 1255. (fn. 2) By 1285, however, William of Hodnet (fl. 1300) (fn. 3) held Lawley as tenant in chief and was the immediate lord of the tenant in demesne. (fn. 4) That part of Lawley was accounted a member of Hodnet manor, (fn. 5) with which the overlordship passed to William's son-in-law William of Ludlow (d. 1316) and to John of Ludlow (d. 1398). (fn. 6) The Domesday tenant in demesne, Hunnit, appears to have been succeeded by Toret. (fn. 7) Peter FitzToret (fl. 1160-94) was lord in 1180, and his son Bartholomew Toret (fl. 1196-1229) succeeded him. Bartholomew was dead by 1235, and the estate passed, presumably through his daughter Joan or grandson Richard Corbet (III), to the Corbets of Moreton Corbet. By 1255 Robert Corbet (d. 1300) was lord, (fn. 8) and after 1283 he acquired the smaller manor too.

That smaller manor, held in 1066, by Erniet, was held of the earl by William Pantulf. (fn. 9) Pantulf's mesne lordship became a tenancy in chief, presumably in 1102, (fn. 10) and descended to the barons of Wem, (fn. 11) to whose court leet of Hinstock part of Lawley continued to owe service. (fn. 12) A mesne lordship in that part had been acquired by the Eyton family of Eyton upon the Weald Moors by 1285, (fn. 13) and in 1606 Lawley was said to be held of Eyton manor. (fn. 14) A chief rent of 5s. was paid to the lords of Eyton by the demesne lords of Lawley at least until 1686. (fn. 15) The demesne lord in 1255 was Ralph of Stanton, (fn. 16) who was named as lord in 1284 or 1285. (fn. 17) Walter of Stanton later conveyed the manor to Robert Corbet of Moreton (d. 1300), (fn. 18) who was already lord of the larger manor.

The descent of both manors seems to have followed that of Moreton Corbet until the mid 17th century. (fn. 19) In 1649 Sir Vincent Corbet sold Lawley to Richard Browne (fn. 20) (d. 1677). (fn. 21) Browne left most of his estate to his son Robert (d. 1682), whose trustees sold that part of it to Thomas Burton of Longner in 1683. (fn. 22) It seems to have descended with Longner (fn. 23) until 1853 when Robert Burton sold it to the Coalbrookdale Co. (fn. 24) In 1910 the company sold its land in Lawley in small lots, but not the lordship of the manor. (fn. 25) The lordship was presumably implied in the company's conveyance in 1962 of all its assets to Allied Ironfounders Ltd., which in 1973 sold the same to Glynwed Foundries Ltd., of Bilston (Staffs.), the owners in 1981. (fn. 26)

Lawley House is a 19th-century brick building (fn. 27) perhaps on the site of a medieval capital messuage.

Bartholomew Toret granted a virgate to the canonesses of Brewood with his sister Gundred. They held it of Robert Corbet in 1255 but parted with it before the Dissolution. (fn. 28)

Richard Browne (d. 1677) left one estate at Lawley separately from the manorial estate, to his son Philip, who sold his Lawley property in 1733 to William Forester of Dothill. (fn. 29) In 1842 it was the only estate other than the Burtons' and comprised 107 a. (fn. 30) In 1918 Lord Forester sold it. (fn. 31)


  • 1. V.C.H. Salop. i. 334; Eyton, ii. 48-9; viii. 82, 100.
  • 2. Rot. Hund. (Rec. Com.), ii. 56.
  • 3. Eyton, ix. 333.
  • 4. Feud. Aids, iv. 219.
  • 5. Eyton, viii. 100.
  • 6. Ibid. ix. 333-5; Cat. Anct. D. vi, C 4637.
  • 7. Eyton, ii. 48-9.
  • 8. Ibid. viii. 100; x. 182, 185-7.
  • 9. V.C.H. Salop. i. 332.
  • 10. Ibid. iii. 10.
  • 11. Feud. Aids, iv. 219.
  • 12. Below, Local Govt. and Public Services.
  • 13. Feud. Aids, iv. 219.
  • 14. P.R.O., C 142/303, no. 141.
  • 15. Cal. Inq. p.m. iii, pp. 504-5; Eyton, viii. 38 n.
  • 16. Rot. Hund. ii. 56.
  • 17. Feud. Aids, iv. 219.
  • 18. Cal. Inq. p.m. iii, pp. 504-5.
  • 19. Ibid.; Cal. Close, 1381-5, 20; Cal. Inq. p.m. Hen. VII, i, p. 476; P.R.O., C 142/187, no. 56; /205, no. 187; /303, no. 141; /399, no. 154; /554, no. 66; S.P.L., Deeds 18146. Cf. A. E. C[orbet], The Fam. of Corbet: its Life and Times, ii [1918], table facing p. 368.
  • 20. P.R.O., CP 25(2)/590/1649 East. no. [9]; S.R.O. 1224, box 223, pedigree of Ric. Browne.
  • 21. Wellington par. reg. bur. 26 May (transcript in S.P.L.).
  • 22. S.R.O. 1224, box 223, wills of Ric. and Rob. Browne (copies) and papers in Burton v. Cleaton and Cleaton.
  • 23. S.R.O., q. sess. rec. box 260, reg. of gamekeepers 1711-78, 14 Sept. 1725; P.R.O., CP 43/862, rot. 392. Cf. W. Hughes, Sheriffs of Salop. 1831-86 (Shrews. 1886), 44-5.
  • 24. S.R.O. 1681, box 122, deed; T.D.C., deed pkt. 1372, abstr. of title.
  • 25. S.R.O. 1268/4. Conveyances were completed 1911: e.g. 1681, box 178, deed.
  • 26. Deeds in possession of Thorn-Pudsey & Derry, Ironbridge.
  • 27. SA 21141.
  • 28. Rot. Hund. ii. 56 (in which Bartholomew is called Bertram); Dugdale, Mon. v. 731.
  • 29. S.R.O. 1224, box 223, will (copy) and deed.
  • 30. S.R.O. 14, title appt.
  • 31. S.R.O. 1681, box 44, sale plan.