The hundred of Streat

Pages 92-93

A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 7, the Rape of Lewes. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1940.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.



containing the parishes of Chailey; East Chiltington; Ditchling; Plumpton; Wivelsfield; Streat; Westmeston

This hundred at the time of the Domesday Survey consisted of Streat, Westmeston, Plumpton, East Chiltington, Wootton, and Warningore (now in East Chiltington), and a detached portion of the manor of Beeding (in Burbeach Hundred (fn. 1) ). Ditchling was then recorded, probably in error, under Swanborough Hundred. (fn. 2) In the Subsidy Roll of 1296 the hundred is divided into three 'vills', Streat, 'Lotfield', and Lindfield and Burleigh, (fn. 3) and an examination of the names of tenants recorded shows that the vill of Streat included also Ditchling, Westmeston, East Chiltington, and Plumpton. 'Lotfield' (of which the name survives in Lovell Barn, Chailey) (fn. 4) evidently covered Chailey, Wivelsfield, and probably a small part of Lindfield; Lindfield and Burleigh apparently included, besides Lindfield and Burleigh Arches, Ardingly, West Hoathly, a large part of Balcombe, and part of Cuckfield. The same three vills appear in 1316, (fn. 5) but by 1327 the third vill had been divided into five, namely, Balcombe, Lindfield Bardolf, Lindfield Arches, Ardingly, and (West) Hoathly, (fn. 6) In 1332 these five were reduced to two, both called Lindfield. An analysis of the names of tenants paying the subsidy shows that the first included Balcombe, Hoathly, Ardingly, and Lindfield Bardolf, while the second corresponded to Lindfield Arches. Streat and 'Lofeld' remained unaltered. (fn. 7) By the beginning of the 17th century the vills or boroughs had been divided into north and south groups; West Hoathly, Lindfield Bardolf, Balcombe, (fn. 8) and Ardingly in the north, and the parishes now forming the hundred (with Lofilde) in the south portion. (fn. 9) In the surveys of 1624 and 1651 Lofeld and Lindfield Arches are not included, and it is noticeable that at least between 1597 and 1622 they alone did not pay the 'common fine' to the hundred court. (fn. 10)

The outlying boroughs of the north contained parts of the large demesne manor of Ditchling, and it is uncertain when they were actually transferred to Buttinghill Hundred. (fn. 11) Lindfield was apparently removed to Pevensey Rape before 1621, (fn. 12) but as late as 1854 all the boroughs appear in the court leet or view of frankpledge of Streat Hundred, 'Loxfield' still being included in the south as a 'free borough'. Constables, aldermen, and headboroughs were appointed for each borough, with the addition of street drivers from 1821, but headboroughs were omitted from 1844. (fn. 13)

The hundred of Streat has always descended with the Barony of Lewes (q.v.). In 1412 it was valued at £12 10s. (fn. 14)


  • 1. V.C.H. Suss. i, 441–2, 443 n.
  • 2. Ibid. 436a.
  • 3. Suss. Rec. Soc. x, 51.
  • 4. Place-Names of Suss. ii, 297.
  • 5. Feud. Aids, v, 136. Lotfield is here 'Louelde'.
  • 6. Suss. Rec. Soc. x, 178–81.
  • 7. Ibid. 292–5. Another vill of 'Lyndfeld and Bourghele' is given at the same date under Loxfield Hundred, with almost identical names: ibid. 310–11.
  • 8. This portion is called in a Subs. R. of 1621 'Balcomb Burrow' (Suss. Arch. Coll. ix., 87); the rest was included in Buttinghill Hundred (ibid. 80).
  • 9. Bk. of J. Rowe (Suss. Rec. Soc. xxxiv), 131–2.
  • 10. Ibid. Horsfield, Hist. of Sussex, i, 104; Suss. Arch. Coll. xxiii, 232.
  • 11. Budgen's map of 1724 shows the boundaries of the Hundred as at present. Add. MS. 5684, fol. 196 is uncertain on the point.
  • 12. Place-Names of Suss. ii, 340.
  • 13. Court Bk. of Streat Hund., Lewes. The place of meeting is not recorded.
  • 14. Feud Aids, vi, 520.