Charlinch: Manors and other estates

Pages 92-94

A History of the County of Somerset: Volume 6, Andersfield, Cannington, and North Petherton Hundreds (Bridgwater and Neighbouring Parishes). Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1992.

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In 1066 both CHARLINCH and CURRYPOOL were held by Alwig Banneson, and in 1086 by Roger de Courcelles. (fn. 1) Both were probably fees of Hugh Vautort in 1166 (fn. 2) and both descended in the Vautort family, usually as Currypool manor although the name Charlinch manor continued in occasional use until 1803. (fn. 3) Currypool was held like Kilve (fn. 4) of the barony of Compton Dundon and overlordship was recorded in 1363. (fn. 5)

Joel Vautort was probably lord of Currypool between 1225 and 1245 (fn. 6) and was followed by Philip. (fn. 7) John Vautort had succeeded Philip by 1285, and Hugh was lord possibly in 1299 and certainly by 1303. (fn. 8) Hugh Vautort granted the estate to Adam Brett, possibly his brother-inlaw, in 1310-11 and died shortly afterwards. In 1311 Adam settled it on Hugh's widow Lucy for life, with successive remainders to Hugh's children John, Beatrice, and Gillian, who were probably then under age. (fn. 9) A fourth child, Egelina, may by 1316 have been married to Richard Champernowne, who then held a fee at Charlinch. (fn. 10) The manor was in the hands of the Crown in 1320 (fn. 11) possibly after the death of Lucy. John Vautort, the heir, seems to have died without issue before 1332, and his sister Beatrice, wife of Simon of Bradney, then held the estate. (fn. 12) She and Egelina Champernowne were still holding land in Charlinch in 1344 (fn. 13) and Beatrice survived until 1360 or shortly afterwards. (fn. 14) She seems to have died without issue and by 1367 the inheritance had passed to her nephew Richard Lyf, son of her sister Gillian, who had married Godfrey Lyf. (fn. 15) In 1396-7 Richard granted the manor to trustees (fn. 16) and died soon afterwards, leaving two daughters, Amice or Avice, wife of Baldwin Malet, and Joan, wife of Walter Tilley. (fn. 17) In 1401 the estate was divided between them but Richard's widow Margery, later wife of Richard Boyton, retained a life interest (fn. 18) and Boyton held the manor until 1412. (fn. 19) In 1406 the whole manor was settled in reversion on Baldwin Malet and Avice, (fn. 20) although Walter Tilley and Joan secured a settlement of their share of the advowson c. 1416. (fn. 21) Avice held the manor from 1428 until c. 1436 when she granted it to Alexander Hody and others, probably in trust for her sons. (fn. 22) In 1433 her son Hugh Malet (d. 1465) (fn. 23) had released his inheritance to his brother Thomas for the latter's life (fn. 24) but Thomas presumably died and Hugh was lord of Currypool c. 1440. (fn. 25) Hugh was succeeded by his son Thomas (d. 1501), (fn. 26) and Thomas by his son William (d. 1510). (fn. 27) Currypool descended thereafter with Enmore until 1833 when it became part of Henry Labouchere's Quantock estate. Lordship was last recorded in 1833. (fn. 28) At the sale of the Quantock estate in 1920 Currypool farm was bought by Somerset county council but was sold in the same year to the tenant, William Jeanes, (fn. 29) whose family owned it in 1987.

The capital messuage of Currypool was recorded in 1521 (fn. 30) and appears to have been the Malet family's home in the 16th century, (fn. 31) but by the early 18th century it was let as a farmhouse. (fn. 32) In 1664 half its 14 hearths were said to have fallen down. (fn. 33) Currypool Farm lies within a large enclosure which is moated on the north and east. Close to the north-east corner of the house the remains of a stone wing demolished c. 1960 incorporate a late medieval piscina and a 16th-century doorway, suggesting that it was the solar wing of the medieval house with a chapel. The present kitchen wing, which is probably of the 17th century, may be on the site of the main range, to which a new southern block containing the principal rooms was added early in the 19th century.

GOTHELNEY was held by Alweard in 1066 and by Geoffrey Vautort of Roger de Courcelles in 1086. (fn. 34) Overlordship was not recorded again until the 16th century when it was claimed by the lords of Enmore manor. (fn. 35) Gothelney may have been held by Hugh Vautort in 1166 (fn. 36) but by the late 13th century it belonged to the Malet family and Richard Malet was fined c. 1275 for not keeping hospitality there. (fn. 37) In 1307 an estate at Gothelney was settled on Raymond Malet and his wife Joan and their issue with remainder to Baldwin Malet of whom they were to hold it. (fn. 38) Gothelney probably descended in the Malet family like Enmore until c. 1400 when Baldwin Malet gave the manor to Ralph Durburgh (d. 1432) and his wife Joan. (fn. 39) After the death of his son Robert c. 1410, Ralph granted Gothelney to Hugh Mortimer and others, presumably in trust for his daughter Joan, who with her husband John Courtenay secured a grant of the manor c. 1421. (fn. 40) Joan Durburgh was still alive in 1451 (fn. 41) but may have granted Gothelney to her daughter Isabel (d. before 1436) who married Edward Greville (d. 1436-7) but had no children. (fn. 42) The manor had been acquired by Alexander Hody by 1439 (fn. 43) possibly under a settlement of 1432. (fn. 44) Alexander died in 1461 in possession of the manor (fn. 45) which descended in the Hody family with Newnham in Stogursey (fn. 46) until 1622 when John Hody sold Gothelney to Roger Bourne. (fn. 47)

Roger Bourne (d. 1624) was followed in turn by his nephew John Bourne (d. 1656) and by John's son Roger (d. 1672-3). (fn. 48) Roger's daughter Florence, wife of Edward Baber, died without issue in 1713 leaving the manor to her kinsman Thomas Bourne (d. c. 1728). (fn. 49) His wife Anne (d. 1730) (fn. 50) devised Gothelney to her brother William Gore (fn. 51) (d. 1768) who left the manor to his kinsman Edward Gore. (fn. 52) Edward (d. 1801) was succeeded by his second son Charles (d. 1841) and by Charles's son Montagu (d. 1864). (fn. 53) By 1894 the estate was owned by the Cann family and John Henry Cann was the owner in 1923. (fn. 54) It passed through several hands and lordship was last recorded in 1943 when it belonged to Mr. S. Nation. (fn. 55) In 1987 the house was owned by the Hallet family.

A house was recorded c. 1275 (fn. 56) and there was a chapel at Gothelney, associated with but not necessarily within the house, in 1436. (fn. 57) During the Second World War the house was requisitioned by the War Department (fn. 58) and was later used as a kindergarten. (fn. 59) Gothelney Hall, restored by the Hallet family in the 1950s, (fn. 60) has a complex structural history. At the centre of the main, north-south, range there is a tall house of the later 15th century which has a central, ceiled hall with a cross passage, entered from the east through a porch. There was a room at each end of the hall and above each another at mezzanine level. On the first floor a great chamber, open to the roof, extended over the hall and the northern mezzanine room, and there were first and attic floors over the southern room. The roof of the great chamber is richly decorated with arch-braced main and intermediate trusses and three rows of cusped windbraces. The great chamber was lit by two-light windows on each side and on the west there was a fireplace whose flue was bracketed out from the wall. Access to the upper rooms was by a large stair turret against the eastern entry to the cross passage and there were garderobe turrets at the south-west corner and the north end of the building. That house was probably built by Alexander Hody, his widow, or his nephew, and most of the later additions were probably made during the period of the Hody family's ownership. One of the first was a room with a traceried window on top of the stair turret. It may have been used as a chapel or oratory. A 16th-century extension at the south end was probably intended for storage rather than domestic use and additions to the north and east are of similar date and appear to have contained kitchen and service rooms. The most notable 17th-century insertion is a ribbed plaster ceiling in the northern ground floor room. In the 18th century there was much internal refitting and sash windows were put into the east side of the great chamber. The porch and two-storeyed passage next to it, which may be of 16th-century origin, appear to have been rebuilt in the early 19th century.

PADNOLLER manor was settled on Hugh Cary and his wife Edith for their lives in 1427 with reversion to Thomas Horsey and his wife Alice. (fn. 61) Hugh held Padnoller in 1431 (fn. 62) but by 1461 it was held with Gothelney by Alexander Hody (fn. 63) and there was no later reference to a manor. Padnoller continued to descend with Gothelney until the 16th century or later (fn. 64) but by 1649 it was part of Currypool manor. (fn. 65) When the Quantock estate was sold in 1920 Padnoller was bought by Somerset county council but was later sold to the White family, the owners in 1987. (fn. 66)

The eastern range of Padnoller House appears to be of the 18th century but it may be an older building which has been reconstructed and refitted. It became the service wing in the early 19th century when the north range, which is of the 18th century or earlier, was remodelled to provide the principal rooms.

SWINDON, later SWANG, was held by Alweard in 1066 and by Ranulf of Roger de Courcelles in 1086. (fn. 67) It was held of Compton Dundon barony like Kilve, and the Furneaux family had a mesne lordship. (fn. 68) In 1375 the overlordship had been lost and the mesne lords were said to hold in chief. (fn. 69) The terre tenancy was held by the Horsey family. In the mid 13th century William Avenel granted to William Horsey the lands of Swindon which had been held by Horsey's father, also William Horsey. (fn. 70) John, probably the younger William's son, lord in 1287, (fn. 71) was succeeded, though possibly not directly, by William Horsey (d. 1327), (fn. 72) John (d. by 1338), (fn. 73) Ralph (d. 1354), and John Horsey (d. 1375). (fn. 74) Henry Horsey in 1435 sold Swindon and other estates to William Bochell and his wife Alice. (fn. 75) In 1507 William Aylward of Totnes (Devon) released his rights in Swindon to John Horsey. (fn. 76) The subsequent descent is uncertain, but by 1551 it was held with Currypool. (fn. 77) Known as Swangdon in 1714 (fn. 78) and Swang by 1766, (fn. 79) it was purchased by Henry Pleydell Bouverie of Brymore in Cannington and in 1928 it was bought by Somerset county council. (fn. 80)

The capital messuage was recorded in 1327 (fn. 81) but there was no record of a house in 1714. (fn. 82) Swang Farm, which has a main front of brick, was extensively rebuilt, perhaps after a fire, in the early 19th century.


  • 1. V.C.H. Som. i. 485.
  • 2. Red Bk. Exch. (Rolls Ser.), i. 233.
  • 3. Cal. Close, 1429-35, 232; S.R.O., DD/NN (H/20).
  • 4. V.C.H. Som. v. 98.
  • 5. Cal. Close, 1360-4, 449.
  • 6. S.R.S. xi, p. 193; lxviii, p. 2.
  • 7. Pole MS. 1041.
  • 8. Feud. Aids, iv. 281, 308; B.L. Add. Ch. 22551.
  • 9. S.R.S. xii. 21.
  • 10. Visit. Devon, ed. J. L. Vivian, 160; Feud. Aids, iv. 335.
  • 11. Cal. Pat. 1317-21, 445.
  • 12. S.R.S. xii. 160.
  • 13. Ibid. 220-1.
  • 14. Cal. Close, 1360-4, 449.
  • 15. S.R.S. iii. 271-2; lii, p. 45; Pole MS. 1007, 1025.
  • 16. Pole MS. 1007.
  • 17. Ibid. 1008.
  • 18. S.R.S. xxii. 158, 161.
  • 19. Feud. Aids, vi. 503.
  • 20. S.R.S. xxii. 23.
  • 21. Ibid. 178.
  • 22. Feud. Aids, iv. 393; Pole MS. 966.
  • 23. P.R.O., C 140/16, no. 8.
  • 24. Cal. Close, 1429-35, 232.
  • 25. Pole MS. 995.
  • 26. Cal. Inq. p.m. Hen. VII, ii, p. 250.
  • 27. P.R.O., C 142/25, no. 28.
  • 28. Above, Enmore, manors; below, Over Stowey, manors; S.R.O., DD/PLE 64.
  • 29. S.R.O., C/C 45/2.
  • 30. P.R.O., C 142/63, no. 19.
  • 31. Ibid. C 142/97, no. 102; S.R.S. xix. 10, 250; xxi. 129-30.
  • 32. Norfolk R.O., NRS 8082, 24 B 4.
  • 33. Dwelly, Hearth Tax, i. 70.
  • 34. V.C.H. Som. i. 485.
  • 35. P.R.O., C 142/97, no. 42; C 142/183, no. 70.
  • 36. Red Bk. Exch. (Rolls Ser.), i. 233.
  • 37. Rot. Hund. (Rec. Com.), ii. 128.
  • 38. S.R.S. vi. 360.
  • 39. Pole MS. 972.
  • 40. Ibid. 1051-3; S.R.S. extra ser. 262.
  • 41. S.R.S. extra ser. 263.
  • 42. Ibid. 262-3; ibid. xvi. 140-7.
  • 43. Cal. Close, 1435-41, 33.
  • 44. S.R.S. xxii. 83.
  • 45. P.R.O., C 140/4, no. 34.
  • 46. Below, Stogursey, manors.
  • 47. P.R.O., CP 25(2)/347/20 Jas. I Mich.
  • 48. Som. Wills, ed. Brown, v. 78-9.
  • 49. S.D.N.Q. v. 179-80.
  • 50. S.R.O., DD/GB 149.
  • 51. Som. Wills, ed. Brown, v. 81.
  • 52. Ibid. 87-8.
  • 53. S.R.O., tithe award; ibid. DD/BR/lch 22; ibid. FitzJames pedigrees; D.N.B.
  • 54. S.R.O., DD/DHR 22; Kelly's Dir. Som. (1923).
  • 55. S.R.O., DD/DHR 22.
  • 56. Rot. Hund. (Rec. Com.), ii. 128.
  • 57. S.R.S. xvi. 140-2; below, church.
  • 58. S.R.O., DD/DHR 22.
  • 59. Local inf.
  • 60. Proc. Som. Arch. Soc. cv. 10; for a photo., above, plate facing p. 72.
  • 61. S.R.S. xxii. 70.
  • 62. Feud. Aids, iv. 436.
  • 63. P.R.O., C 140/4, no. 34.
  • 64. Ibid. LR 3/123; ibid. STAC 3/7/38.
  • 65. S.R.O., DD/S/WH 292.
  • 66. Above, Enmore, manors; Som. C.C., deeds; local inf.
  • 67. V.C.H. Som. i. 487.
  • 68. Ibid. v. 98 and sources there cited.
  • 69. Cal. Inq. p.m. xiv, p. 146.
  • 70. B.L. Harl. MS. 4120, p. 69.
  • 71. S.R.S. xxxv. 29.
  • 72. Cal. Inq. p.m. vii, p. 29.
  • 73. S.R.S. iii. 140; B.L. Add. Ch. 15927.
  • 74. Cal. Inq. p.m. xi, p. 142.
  • 75. S.R.S. xxii. 88; Cal. Close, 1435-41, 159.
  • 76. Cal. Close, 1500-9, 303.
  • 77. S.R.S. xxi. 129-30.
  • 78. Norf. R.O., NRS 8082, 24 B 4.
  • 79. S.R.O., Q/REI 7/3A.
  • 80. Som. C.C., deeds, ED 103A.
  • 81. Cal. Inq. p.m. vii, p. 29.
  • 82. Norf. R.O., NRS 8082, 24 B 4.