Parishes: Temple Grafton

Pages 94-100

A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 3, Barlichway Hundred. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1945.

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


In this section


Acreage: 2,050 (2,034 land, 16 water).

Population: 1911, 377; 1921, 314; 1931, 370.

The parish of Temple Grafton lies on the ridge north of the Avon, which forms its southern and southeastern boundary. It includes the hamlets of Ardens Grafton, of which the northern side of the street is in Exhall parish, and Hillborough. In the 17th century the hamlet of King's Broom, now in Bidford, also formed part of the civil parish. (fn. 1) The land rises to an altitude of over 300 ft. in the northern part of the parish and slopes down to about 180 ft. by the river-bank at Hillborough, 2 miles to the south. The village, with the church, stands on the edge of the hill, commanding views across the valley to Bredon Hill and the Cotswolds.

Next east of the churchyard is a small farm-house of the 17th-century, of timber-framing with a thatched roof; and farther east are three small thatched cottages, one of stone, the others timber-framed, all of the same century. Opposite the church is a farmstead with a modern house and a 17th-century barn of timber with red brick infilling and a tiled roof.

Temple Grafton Court is a modern building dating from 1876. It replaces the ancient manor-house, destroyed in 1804, which was of two stories, the lower of stone and the upper of timber, plastered; the gabled central porch had pargetting with figures of Adam and Eve. (fn. 2) A National School was erected in 1838 (the original building is now a church hall) and there is a village hall opened in 1934 and a Baptist Chapel built in 1841.

The hamlet of Ardens Grafton, about ½ mile farther west, has a street of houses mostly of local stone with tiled roofs, but one house, 'Manor Cottage', setting back from the road, on the south side, has timber-framed walls and a thatched roof. Two other buildings retain fragments of ancient framing.

Hillborough, even in 1730, consisted only of two farm-houses. (fn. 3)

Hillborough Manor is of a modified L-shaped plan, the shorter wing projecting to the south at the west end. portions of the close studding of the original south and west walls. In the latter, next to the southern doorway, was a hatch with an ogee head, now blocked. The fireplace was originally 10 ft. wide, but it has been altered for a modern smaller grate and a doorway cut through the back of the remainder, to the south. The Elizabethan staircase, south of the kitchen, has some silhouette balusters and heavy oak treads and risers. The parlour, occupying the north-west angle of the house, has had its floor raised to provide more height for the cellar below it; it is lined with early-17th-century panelling. The only features of note in the upper story are two In the angle of the two main wings is a staircase block, gabled on the east. All the external walls are of stone except the middle part of the north front, where the upper story is of close-set studding. This wall and the rooms behind it—kitchen, &c.—are of the early 16th century; the west wing and the stair-hall were built late in the 16th century, and the north range was extended to the east, or altered, in the 18th century or later. The walls are of square lias stone, those of the west wing being in alternate narrow and wide courses. The roofs are tiled. The principal front is the west. The main wall has two projecting chimney-stacks of stone with brick shafts. The southern has two shafts faced with curiously irregular V-shaped pilasters; the northern has two old square shafts set diagonally, besides later shafts, and immediately north of it is a shallow wing or bay, projecting westwards 6¼ ft. The gable-head is of modern brick. The lowest story has a four-light window with an old oak frame and mullions. There are some old wood-framed windows in the main wall.


On the north front the tall western part, of the late 16th century, is of stone. There are three old windows, half below ground-level, to the basement: these have wood frames, and the gable-head has an original fivelight window with moulded oak frame and mullions. The range east of this is of only two stories; part of it retains the close-set framing to the upper story; the lower story is of stone and has a modern window, to the kitchen, and a wide doorway. East of this part the whole wall has been rebuilt. There are no ancient features on the south side of this range, or east side of the west wing, but the south gable-head of the wing has an ancient window of stone with chamfered mullions and a moulded dripstone.

The kitchen has a ceiling with moulded cross-beams and joists of the early 16th century, and it preserves doorways, to the room over the parlour and chamber next south of it; these are oak framed and have original ogee arches.

South-east of the house are timber-framed farm buildings, and beyond them is an ancient circular pigeon-house built of stone in rubble with many larger courses of squared stones. It is about 24 ft. in diameter externally and the walls are about a yard thick inclusive of the stone nests inside. It has a conical roof, tiled, and a lantern at the apex.

About ¼ mile to the south-west of Hillborough is 'West Hillborough', an early-17th-century building of stone, largely rebuilt in modern red brick. The plan is of a modified L-shape, the wing extending to the north at the east end. The gabled end of the wing has original stone windows with moulded mullions to the ground and first floors and moulded oak bargeboards to the gable-head. The north side of the main block also had mullioned windows, now blocked, and a porch wing, which has since been widened in brickwork: the original doorway to the porch, now blocked, is in its east side and has a four-centred arch in a square head. The present entrance in the north front is modern, but the inner doorway has an ancient moulded oak frame and a battened door hung with ornamental strap hinges. The east end-wall of the main block is of rubble, but the north and west walls are of modern red brick. It has a central chimney-stack of stone, containing a 7-ft. fire-place, with three square shafts set diagonally, of thin bricks, above the tiled roof.

The L.M.S. railway from Stratford to Broom Junction and the main Stratford-Bidford-Evesham road cross the parish from east to west. At Cranhill a road branches northwards to Haselor, with another branch westwards to Wixford, and is crossed in Temple Grafton village by a road from Red Hill on the Alcester Stratford road, through Ardens Grafton to Exhall. This latter, continued from Ardens Grafton southwestwards as what is now only a lane through Summer Hill to Bidford, was once the principal road through the village and is marked and mile-posted on 18thcentury maps of Warwickshire as an alternative main road from Stratford to Bidford. (fn. 5) The manor of Hillborough had salt rights at Droitwich attached to it, (fn. 6) and the field path along the river from Bidford to Hillborough may be the survival of a Salt Way. (fn. 7)

The soil is light clay and sand, with a subsoil of lower lias limestone. There was formerly extensive quarrying here, and stone and slates from Grafton were used at Stratford early in the 15th century. (fn. 8) When the Birmingham-Stratford Canal was first projected in 1792 it was proposed to construct a branch ending at two quarries belonging to Viscount Beauchamp on the border of Binton parish. (fn. 9) Of the 29 householders given in Kelly's Directory for 1854 no less than 10 were quarriers and stone masons. In the later 19th century, however, the industry began to decline and has now quite disappeared.

In 1517 the Inclosure Commissioners reported that Sir William Gascoigne (lord of the manor of Oversley) and Henry Smyth of Coventry had each consolidated the land of two farms into one, leaving one of the farmhouses to decay. About 150 acres were thus ingrossed and some 15 persons evicted. (fn. 10) A survey (fn. 11) in 1540 of the Hospitaller and Westminster Abbey estates, then leased to John Swift, shows that much of the land was in the hands of freeholders. The common waste in Ardens Grafton was 60 acres and in Temple Grafton 21 acres, besides 27 acres of Lammas Common held by John Swift at Marston Hill, probably the later Cow Common. Another survey, (fn. 12) made in 1740, shows that there had been some inclosure and much concentration of ownership in the hands of the lord of the manor and a few freeholders. The open common had fallen to 44 acres in Ardens and 7 acres in Temple Grafton, and the Cow Common had recently been partitioned, one-tenth to 'the poor' and the rest divided between the four largest proprietors. The open arable of Temple Grafton lay in four fields, named after the points of the compass, and that of Ardens Grafton in four 'quarters'—Town Furlong, Walkers Hill, Lower Field, and Ash Furlong. Concentration continued, and when the parish was finally inclosed under an Act of Parliament (52 Geo. III, c. 37) in 1815 (fn. 13) nearly 90 per cent. of the allotment was made to four proprietors. About 850 acres of open fields and commons were dealt with; half of this amount was assigned to John Fullerton, lord of the manor, and 162 acres in lieu of rectorial tithes to the heirs of Ferdinando Bullock.

The name Temple Grafton is a curious misnomer which first occurs in 1535; for though the Hospitallers held land here, there seems to have been no connexion with the Templars. During the Middle Ages Temple and Ardens Grafton were usually distinguished as Over Grafton, Grafton Superior, Church Grafton, or Grafton Major and Nether Grafton, Grafton Inferior or Grafton Minor respectively. A reference to 'Temple Grafton alias Ardens Grafton' occurs in 1650. (fn. 14)


GRAFTON was alleged to have been granted to Evesham Abbey by Ceolred King of Mercia in 710. (fn. 15) But it is also said to have been given by Edward the Confessor in 1055, and is included among the 36 manors acquired by Abbot Ethelwig (1055–77); (fn. 16) the 8th-century charter is probably a forgery made about this time to strengthen the title. Of these 36 manors, 28, including Grafton, were seized by Odo, Bishop of Bayeux, quasi lupus rapax, after Ethelwig's death. (fn. 17) Domesday records that before the Conquest Mervin, Scotin, Toti, and Tosti held it freely. It was assessed in 1086 at 5 hides, held by Gilbert of Osbern FitzRichard, (fn. 18) to whom Odo had given it. (fn. 19) Evesham seems to have regained part of the manor after Osbern's death, for Abbot Maurice (1122–30), without leave of his chapter, granted 1 hide here in fee farm to Ralph Boteler of Oversley, (fn. 20) to whose son Robert Abbot Adam (1160–91) gave it in fee. (fn. 21) Grafton is in fact included among the townships in which the abbot claimed privileges in the reign of Edward I. (fn. 22) In 1208 there is mention of a holding of the fee of William de Beauchamp, (fn. 23) whose grandson married Isabel sister and heir of William Mauduit, Earl of Warwick, and was the ancestor of the Beauchamp earls. The overlordship, however, already belonged to the Earl of Warwick in 1243 (fn. 24) and so continued at least until the 15th century, the manor being held of him by the service of half a knight's fee in 1243 and 1268, (fn. 25) of a whole fee in 1316, (fn. 26) and of a quarter of a fee in 1428. (fn. 27)

Evesham Abbey. Azure a chain with its padlock set cheveronwise between three mitres argent.

The Graftons were the principal landholders during the later 12th century. Robert de Grafton paid 10 marks to the sheriff for default in 1179–80. (fn. 28) Ralph son of William de Grafton died in 1204, when his sister and heir Margaret released all her land in Grafton, except for a hide which she held of the Abbot of Evesham, to Henry de Bereford, (fn. 29) who received the wardship of William and Felice her son and daughter and in return undertook to maintain her during life. (fn. 30) Henry's right was challenged by Ralph Boteler, who, probably acting as lord of the manor, paid a fine to have the lands until the title should be legally determined between him and Henry de Bereford. (fn. 31) In 1208 Margaret was still holding half a hide of Ralph in Grafton (fn. 32) which, with a hide of the fee of William de Beauchamp, she passed to William de Arderne. (fn. 33) At some time before 1221 Henry de Bereford gave the whole fee to William de Arderne, (fn. 34) but probably retained the mesne lordship, as in 1240 he acknowledged the right of Hugh de Arderne to hold of him 3 hides in Grafton by render of a pair of spurs, or one penny, in lieu of the service of half a knight's fee. (fn. 35) When Henry died his property passed to his nephew Henry de Nafford, who was holding the manor of the Earl of Warwick for half a fee in 1243, (fn. 36) as was William de Arderne in 1268. (fn. 37)

The first mention of the Knights Hospitallers here occurs in 1189, when they received a grant of land from Henry de Grafton. (fn. 38) In 1275–6 they were holding 2 carucates—formerly belonging to Ralph and Bernard de Grafton—which were declared to have evaded taxation for forty years past. (fn. 39) In 1316 they held the manor for a knight's fee of Guy de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick. By 1338 they had a Preceptory here, which was united with that of Balsall, (fn. 40) and they continued lords of the manor until the suppression of their Order in 1540.

Knights Hospitallers. Gules a cross argent.

Sheldon. Sable a fesse between three sheldrakes argent.

The manor of TEMPLE GRAFTON thereupon passed to the Crown and by an Act of 32 Henry VIII was included in the jointure of Queen Katherine Parr. (fn. 41) In 1545, however, it was granted with other estates to William Sheldon and John Draper (alias Mercer) of Temple Grafton (fn. 42) and was allotted to Draper two years later. In 1548 Draper settled the manor on his son Robert, reserving a moiety to his wife Margery for her life, and he died in 1556. (fn. 43) Margery Draper died in 1558 and Robert in 1563, (fn. 44) leaving a son and heir William, who received the manor on coming of age in 1583. (fn. 45) William Draper married Margaret daughter of Anthony Sheldon of Broadway and, having no issue, settled the manor on Brace (or Blaze) Sheldon, his brother-in-law. From him it passed to his son and grandson, both also named Brace. (fn. 46) Brace II, who was found seised of the manor in 1626, was a recusant, and in 1633 two parts of his lands here forfeited to the Crown were granted to his kinsman, William Sheldon, on a lease for forty-one years. (fn. 47) Brace III was holding the manor in 1654 (fn. 48) and died c. 1669, (fn. 49) leaving his daughter Anne as his heir. His younger brother Ralph, who appears as lord of the manor in 1674 (fn. 50) and 1675, (fn. 51) may have been acting as guardian during Anne's minority. Anne married Edward Burdett of Gray's Inn, who died in 1722. (fn. 52) She then granted the manor to the Rev. Thomas Allen and John Cresser (fn. 53) in trust for her son Robert, who, however, died at the age of 16 in the following year. Anne Burdett was still lady of the manor in 1730, (fn. 54) but James Kendall of Conduit Street, London, was holding it in 1731, (fn. 55) and it passed on his death to his widow, who died at Stratford in 1769. (fn. 56) In that year it came into the hands of the Rev. John Fullerton, rector of West Horsley, Surrey, and afterwards of the College, Old Stratford. (fn. 57) In 1852 his son John Fullerton conveyed it to Isaac Hodgson, from whose son it was purchased in 1867 by James William Carlile, (fn. 58) who built the church, the schools, the vicarage, Temple Grafton Court, and many of the cottages in the village. Mr. Carlile, who died in 1892, gave the manor to his daughter Alice, wife of Dominick Samuel Gregg. When Mrs. Gregg died in 1919 her daughter Mrs. Whiteman succeeded to it. In 1921 the estate was broken up, Temple Grafton Court being purchased by Thomas Lonsdale, whose widow is the present owner, and most of the farms by the tenants. (fn. 59)

Between 1226 and 1287 there are references to a tenement in Grafton held of the honor of Richard's Castle, and therefore presumably part of the Domesday holding of Osbern Fitz-Richard. In 1226 John Esturmy granted a carucate of land to William son of Robert de Grafton to hold by the service of a quarter of a knight's fee. (fn. 60) This is doubtless the fifth of a fee held in 1236 of the fee of Stuteville, (fn. 61) for William de Stuteville was then lord of the honor, as third husband of Margaret de Say; and in 1243 William de Grafton's quarter-fee was held of John de Sturmy, who held of William de Curly, who held of Richard's Castle. (fn. 62) In 1287 the hamlet of Nether Grafton was held for a quarter of a fee by John de Sturmy of Robert de Mortimer (fn. 63) grandson of Robert second husband of Margaret de Say. (fn. 64) Robert's son and heir Hugh left no male issue and the overlordship probably passed to the Earl of Warwick.

Part of the tenement of Ralph Boteler appears to have descended with the manor of Oversley (q.v.) through the Ferrers and Neville families to Sir William Gascoigne, who in 1537 conveyed it to Thomas Cromwell, afterwards Earl of Essex. (fn. 65) After Cromwell's execution it passed to the Crown and in 1541, with other of his estates in this neighbourhood, was granted to Sir George Throckmorton. (fn. 66)

GRAFTON MINOR occurs in a grant to Evesham Abbey by Ufa, Sheriff of Warwickshire, dated 973. (fn. 67) As it is included among Ethelwig's acquisitions ('Alia Graftun') (fn. 68) it may in the meantime have been lost by the monastery, and with Grafton it was seized by the Bishop of Bayeux. It is most probably to be identified with the 3 hides and 1 virgate in 'Graston' which Domesday records among the possessions of William Fitz-Corbucion; Leuric and Eileua held it of him and before the Conquest they had held it freely. (fn. 69) In 1208 Margaret de Grafton passed 3 hides held of the fee of Peter de Studley (or Corbizon) to William de Arderne. (fn. 70) Another William died in 1276 leaving lands in Grafton, amounting to about 3 hides, of which the tenure is not specified, and a fifth of a knight's fee held by Alan de Grafton. (fn. 71) The custody of his brother and heir Richard, an idiot, fell to the Crown and the estate was granted to his widow Agatha to hold in dower. (fn. 72) Richard died in 1279, (fn. 73) and Sir John Wolf, or 'le Low', and Amice his wife (perhaps Richard's sister) remitted their rights in Richard's property to Edward I, (fn. 74) who in 1292 granted it as a manor, together with Knowle and other estates that had formerly belonged to William de Arderne, to Westminster Abbey, to provide obits for the soul of Queen Eleanor. (fn. 75) The abbey's right was challenged in 1332 by Margery widow of Philip le Wolf, (fn. 76) but Westminster remained in possession until the Dissolution. In 1428 it was held as half a knight's fee, (fn. 77) but it is not mentioned in the valuation of 1535 and by that time was probably reckoned as a part of the manor of Knowle. The descent of the property, distinguished after 1540 as ARDENS GRAFTON, since the Reformation has followed that of Temple Grafton.

Westminster Abbey. Gules two crossed keys or.

A messuage called Allen's land, with about 1,000 acres of land, wood, and heath, is mentioned in 1553 as in the possession of Roger Swift. (fn. 78) The family of Swift had then been settled in the parish for more than two centuries. A William Swift occurs in Grafton in 1327 (fn. 79) and witnesses a grant of land in Church Grafton by John Alleyn to Walter Alleyn in 1334: (fn. 80) John and William Swyft served as collectors of subsidies in Warwickshire in 1434 and 1440 respectively: (fn. 81) in 1545 John Swyfte was holding lands called Ardens in Temple and Ardens Grafton as the former tenant of the Hospitallers and of Westminster Abbey. (fn. 82) Roger Swift's daughter and heir Frances married Edward Kempson of Ardens Grafton. Their son George conveyed the property to his cousin William Kempson in 1623–4. (fn. 83) William's lands were sequestered for recusancy, but his daughter Elizabeth, having been brought up by a Protestant, seems to have recovered full possession. (fn. 84) She married George Ferrers of Solihull, (fn. 85) and in 1676 conveyed the estate to Reason Mellish in trust for George Willoughby, whose sons Francis and Robert sold it to Anthony Charles of Great Alne and Ralph Wagstaffe of Temple Grafton, the possessors of it in 1730. (fn. 86) In 1870 the estate was purchased by James William Carlile, then lord of the manor. (fn. 87)

HILLBOROUGH belonged in pre-Conquest times to Evesham Abbey and is included in the spurious grant of Ceolred of Mercia in 710. (fn. 88) It was certainly acquired by Abbot Ethelwig, (fn. 89) and was afterwards lost to the Bishop of Bayeux. In the Confessor's time Ernui and Lodric held it freely and in 1086 Ernui's portion, of 1½ hides, was held by Urse d'Abitot of the king, and 3½ hides in Binton and Hillborough, formerly belonging to Lodric, were held by Hugh of Osbern FitzRichard, the lord of Richard's Castle. (fn. 90) The latter is perhaps identical with the half-knight's fee in Binton and Hillborough which John Hubaud held of John de Hastings in 1313. (fn. 91)

Although the rights of Evesham are ignored in the Domesday Survey, Hillborough was one of the estates for which the abbot successfully sued 'before the five shires at Gildeneberg' and which the Conqueror restored to him. (fn. 92) Abbot Robert of Jumièges (1104–22) granted it to William de Sevecourt, (fn. 93) from whom it apparently passed to Robert Strecke. (fn. 94) But by the middle of the 12th century Peter de Studley (or Corbizon) and Henry de Montfort, his son-in-law, (fn. 95) seem to have been the chief landholders here. (fn. 96) Henry disposed of his interest to Peter, (fn. 97) and William Corbizon was in 1212 holding a quarter and a tenth of a knight's fee in Hillborough of the honor of Richard's Castle. (fn. 98) In 1235 the manor was held of the honor for half a fee, (fn. 99) perhaps by the Cantelupes who similarly held Ipsley. William de Cantelupe in 1254 died seised of certain rents in Hillborough as part of his manor of Aston Cantlow. (fn. 100) The overlordship, like that of Ipsley, descended with the manor of Aston Cantlow at least down to the reign of Elizabeth. (fn. 101) It was held as two half-fees in 1313 (fn. 102) and as a fee, together with Ipsley, in 1346–7. (fn. 103) In 1349 it is again separately accounted for as half a fee, (fn. 104) but Hillborough and Ipsley together were held by the service only of a quarter of a fee in 1428. (fn. 105)

The family of Hubaud, whose principal seat was at Ipsley, is descended from that Hugh who appears in Domesday as the under-tenant of Osbern Fitz-Richard. Dugdale says that Henry Hubaut recovered 'all that he could lay claim to' in Hillborough from Peter Corbizon (fn. 106) probably about the end of the 12th century. Hillborough remained joined with Ipsley (q.v.) in the family (later called Huband) until 1729, when it was sold to Bowater Vernon of Hanbury Hall, Worcestershire. His son Thomas Vernon succeeded in 1735 and died in 1770, leaving it to his daughter Emma, who married John Phillips. On her death in 1818 the estate descended to Thomas Sprawley Vernon and in 1854 was sold to Henry Beacroft of Droitwich. (fn. 107)

Hubaud. Sable three fleurs de lis coming out of leopards' heads argent.

A grant of the manor in 1745 includes court leet and court baron, (fn. 108) but there is no evidence that these franchises were ever exercised here.

In 1313 a half-fee in Hillborough was held of John de Hastings by Simon de Hildebury. (fn. 109) He may be connected with Simon de Belne who in 1249 received a grant of a virgate of land here from Robert and Prudence Throckmorton. (fn. 110) The family of Belne was settled at Bidford early in the 14th century and a Robert de Belne occurs in Hillborough in 1332. (fn. 111) There is no further mention of them here, and the holding must have been merged in the Hubaud manor.

Besides Evesham, which was still possessed of rents in Hillborough at the Dissolution, (fn. 112) Bordesley Abbey held land here from the time of its foundation in 1140. Peter Corbizon in that year granted 10 acres of land called Westcroft (fn. 113) and in 1297 the monks acquired from Millicent, widow of Hugh le Fremon, a twenty years' lease of a meadow called Fremoneshomme, lying between Westcroft and the Avon. (fn. 114) That they had also a fish-pond here appears from an undated grant by Robert le Fremon allowing them to pass over his land whenever they wished to repair it. (fn. 115) They held the rights of fishing in the Avon and free passage through the floodgates (but not the fishing in the floodgates) by a grant from Henry de Montfort. (fn. 116) After the Dissolution these fishing rights were acquired by John Draper, though John Hubaud made a claim to them. (fn. 117) Draper left them to his son Richard, from whom they descended at least until 1640, with the advowson of Grafton. They are, however, included with the manor in a deed of 1745. (fn. 118) In 1603 there is mention of a second fishery, which then belonged, with the other, to Leonard Kempson. (fn. 119)

There was a mill in Hillborough, worth 12d. in 1086, but there is no other reference to it until 1571 when it was in the possession of John Hubaud. (fn. 120) He had also a windmill, which is perhaps the same as that marked to the south of Ardens Grafton village on Sheriff's map of 1796. (fn. 121)


The parish church of ST. ANDREW was entirely rebuilt in 1875 and consists of a chancel with a north organ chamber and vestry, nave, north aisle, and a south-west tower serving as a porch. It is built of lias stone with sandstone dressings, and has tiled roofs.

On the north wall of the chancel is a repainted stone shield of arms of the 17th century with the six quarterings of the Woodchurch-Clarke family, impaling the quarterly coat of De la Hay, Winterbourne, Sheldon, and Ruding. In the organ chamber is a 17th-century oak chest with panelled sides, a carved top-rail, and a panelled lid. Another chest is of the 18th or early 19th century.

The early registers exist only in a very incomplete transcript beginning in 1612.


There was a church at Grafton in 1086. Both the rectory and the advowson were acquired by the Hospitallers, their earliest recorded presentation being in 1277. (fn. 122) There is no mention of the church in 1291, but in 1338 it was valued at £8, (fn. 123) and three years later at £6 13s. 4d., of which the glebe accounted for £2 13s. 4d. (fn. 124) In 1585 it is included in the general return for the Preceptory of Balsall. (fn. 125)

After the Dissolution the rectory and advowson came with the manor to John Draper and passed from him to his son Richard, who in 1567 was holding them of the Crown for a quarter of a knight's fee. (fn. 126) On Richard's death they were divided between his two sisters Agnes (or Anne) wife of William Kempson and Isabel wife of Richard Gennens. Isabel and her husband conveyed her moiety to Henry Huggeford in 1575. (fn. 127) Anne's descended to her son Leonard, who died in 1603, holding the whole rectory and advowson for a quarter-fee. (fn. 128) George Kempson, son of Leonard, presented in 1633, (fn. 129) and in 1640 he sold both rectory and advowson to Sir Simon Clarke. (fn. 130) After 1633 there was no institution until 1849, the church being served for two centuries either by licensed curates or neighbouring incumbents. Nor until 1870 was there a resident vicar. Meanwhile the rectory and advowson passed to Mark Parker, who had married Sir Simon Clarke's daughter Elizabeth and whose grandson Mark Parker was patron in 1730. (fn. 131) Ferdinando Bullock is mentioned as patron in 1786 (fn. 132) and Francis Ferdinando Bullock presented in 1849. (fn. 133) The latter sold the patronage to James William Carlile about 1875 and it descended with the manor until 1921, when it came into the hands of its present owners, the Diocesan Trustees.

In 1712 the great tithes were owned by Anne Burdett, the lady of the manor, (fn. 134) but by 1730 had once more become united with the advowson in the possession of Mark Parker. (fn. 135) The tithes of Hillborough were separately conveyed in 1623 (fn. 136) and 1650. (fn. 137)

In 1586 the vicarage was worth £20 a year. The vicar, John Frith, was then described as 'an old priest and unsound in religion' whose 'chief trade' was 'to cure hawks that are hurt or diseased'. (fn. 138) By the early 18th century it had become customary for the officiating minister to receive the small tithes as his stipend. (fn. 139) The living was united with that of Binton by an Order in Council of 18 Dec. 1931. (fn. 140)

A chapel in Temple Grafton, formerly belonging to the Hospitallers, was included in the grant of 1545 to William Sheldon and John Draper and was granted by the latter to his son Richard in 1551. (fn. 141) It passed thence to the Kempson family and is last mentioned as being lately in the possession of Leonard Kempson in 1604. (fn. 142)

There was a chapel of St. Mary Magdalen in Hillborough, which was pulled down by John Hubaud, who was accused of having carried away the bells, timber, and ornaments and of converting the profits to his own use. (fn. 143)


Thomas King, by will dated 1877 bequeathed £180 to the vicar and churchwardens, the interest to be divided among the poor of the parish. The legacy produces £4 14s. 4d. in dividends, which are distributed to aged poor people in coal.

Walker's Charity. A rentcharge of 12s., understood to have been given by a person named Walker for the poor not receiving parish relief, is now paid out of land in Temple Grafton and distributed to aged poor.

Poor's Land. The endowment of this charity, the origin of which is unknown, consists of 3 acres of land at Temple Grafton known as Poor's Land, let in allotments at a yearly rent of £1. A scheme of the Charity Commissioners appoints four trustees to administer the charity for the benefit of the poor.


  • 1. See under Bidford, p. 51.
  • 2. Figured in Add. MS. 29265, fol. 90. A still earlier house lay within the moat of which traces remain north-east of the Court.
  • 3. Dugd. 723.
  • 4. A stone on the north front bears the date 1605 and the initials G A K, for George and Anne Kempson.
  • 5. Cf. maps by Kitchin, c. 1750; Jeffries, 1755; Carey, 1787; Outhett, 1818.
  • 6. V.C.H. Warw. i, 337.
  • 7. B'ham Arch. Soc. Trans. liv, 14.
  • 8. Hardy, Cal. Stratford Gild Accts. 1405–6, 1410–1, 1427–8
  • 9. a Plans deposited at Shire Hall, Warwick. Though never constructed, this branch is marked on several maps, e.g. Smith 1804 and 1808. Teesdale, Neele (in Smith's Hist. of Warw. 1830).
  • 10. Leadam, Domesday of Inclosures, ii, 405–6.
  • 11. a Augm. Off. Misc. Bks. 261, fols. 46–8.
  • 12. Terrier and map: B.R.L. 247148. 52 per cent. of the land in Temple Grafton but only 7 per cent. in Ardens Grafton was already inclosed.
  • 13. a Copy of Award, with map, at Shire Hall, Warwick.
  • 14. Feet of F. East. 1650.
  • 15. Chron. de Evesham (Rolls Ser.), 72; Birch, Cart. Sax. i, no. 127.
  • 16. Chron. de Evesham, 75, 95; Mon. Angl. ii, 17, 18.
  • 17. Chron. de Evesham, 97. It seems possible that these manors had been granted to Ethelwig personally, and that Odo seized them, perhaps on royal instructions, when the next abbot, Walter, tried to treat them as endowments of his house: see Darlington in Engl. Hist. Rev. xlviii, pp. 1–22, 177–98.
  • 18. V.C.H. Warw. i, 338–9.
  • 19. Harl. MS. 3763, foll. 58 d. Osbern had apparently mortgaged this land to Abbot Ethelwig and, being unable to repay the money, granted it to the abbey, but availed himself of Bishop Odo's inquest to keep both the land and the money: Engl. Hist. Rev. xlviii, 189.
  • 20. Cott. MS. Vesp. B. xxiv, fol. 8, 9 d.
  • 21. Harl. MS. 3763, fol. 93 d.
  • 22. Plac. de Quo. Warr. (Rec. Com), 779.
  • 23. Feet of F. (Dugd. Soc. xi), no. 187.
  • 24. Bk. of Fees, ii, 958.
  • 25. Cal. Inq. p.m. i, 679.
  • 26. Ibid. v, 615, p. 405.
  • 27. Feud. Aids, v, 191–2.
  • 28. Pipe R. Soc. xxix, 101.
  • 29. He claimed to be heir of Ralph: Curia Regis R. iii, 144.
  • 30. Pipe R. 6 John, m. 17 d.
  • 31. Ibid.
  • 32. Feet of F. (Dugd. Soc. xi), no. 170.
  • 33. Ibid. no. 181.
  • 34. Assize R. 948, m. 12.
  • 35. Feet of F. Staffs. Mich. 25 Hen. III.
  • 36. Bk. of Fees, 958.
  • 37. Cal. Inq. p.m. i, 679. Dugd. (p. 722) puts this fee in Ardens Grafton, but the two Graftons appear to have been held together, under several mesne lords, during the 13th century.
  • 38. Dugd. 720.
  • 39. Hund. R. (Rec. Com.), ii, 226.
  • 40. V.C.H. Warw. ii, 100–1.
  • 41. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xix (1), p. 645.
  • 42. Ibid. xx (1), p. 366 (7).
  • 43. Chanc. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cxxii, 3.
  • 44. Ibid. cxxxvii, 51.
  • 45. Pat. R. 25 Eliz. pt. 18.
  • 46. Dugd. 720–1. The Christian name Brace originated from the marriage of William Sheldon to Cicely daughter of Francis Brace of Doverdale. Blaze appears to have been the usual form after c. 1650.
  • 47. Pat. R. 11 Chas. I, pt. 26.
  • 48. Cal. Committee for Compounding, v, 3205–6.
  • 49. Mentioned in Hearth Tax Returns 1667, but not in 1670.
  • 50. Recov. R. Mich. 26 Chas. II, ro. 56.
  • 51. Ibid. Mich. 27 Chas. II, ro. 28 d.
  • 52. Dugd. 721.
  • 53. Feet of F. Mich. 11 Anne.
  • 54. Dugd. 721.
  • 55. Gamekeepers' Deputations (Shire Hall, Warwick).
  • 56. Stratford-on-Avon Parish Registers.
  • 57. Gamekeepers' Deputations.
  • 58. MS. Notes, Rev. J. H. Harvey Bloom.
  • 59. Ex inf. Vicar of Grafton.
  • 60. Feet of F. (Dugd. Soc. xi), no. 353.
  • 61. Bk. of Fees, i, 511.
  • 62. Ibid. ii, 948.
  • 63. Cal. Inq. p.m. ii, 640.
  • 64. G.E.C. Complete Peerage (2nd ed.), ix, 258–63.
  • 65. Feet of F.Div.Co. Trin. 29 Hen. VIII.
  • 66. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xvi, g. 878 (80). In 1608 the benefit of recusancy of George Throckmorton of Temple Grafton was granted to Sir James Douglas: Cal. S.P. Dom. 1603–10, p. 437.
  • 67. Chron. de Evesham, 74; Birch, Cart. Sax. no. 1092.
  • 68. Chron. de Evesham, 95.
  • 69. V.C.H. Warw. i, 334.
  • 70. Feet of F. (Dugd. Soc. xi), no. 178.
  • 71. Cal. Inq. p.m. ii, 198.
  • 72. Cal. Fin. R. i, 72, 74.
  • 73. Ibid. 118.
  • 74. Domesday of Westminster Abbey, fol. 437 d.
  • 75. Cal. Chart. R. ii, 425–6.
  • 76. Domesday of Westminster Abbey, fol. 439.
  • 77. Feud. Aids, v, 192.
  • 78. Dugd. 722.
  • 79. Lay Subsidy Roll 1327 (Midland Record Soc. v), p. 29 (supplement). Included in Hillborough in L.S.R. 1332 (Dugd. Soc. vi), 81.
  • 80. Peto Collection 853 (Birthplace, Stratford-on-Avon).
  • 81. Cal. Fin. R. xvi, 191; xvii, 148.
  • 82. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xx (2), g. 266 (7).
  • 83. Dugd. 722; Visit. Warw. 1619 (Harl. Soc. vii), 411–12. The 1682 Visitation (Harl. Soc. lxii, 47) makes William the son and heir of Edward Kempson and Frances Swift.
  • 84. Cal. Committee for Compounding, v, 3229.
  • 85. Described as of Baddesley Clinton in 1682 Visitation.
  • 86. Dugd. 722. By that time the holding must have greatly diminished, for in 1740 Luke and Daniel Wagstaffe held only 74 acres between them (Terrier, B.R.L.).
  • 87. MS. notes, Rev. J. H. Harvey Bloom.
  • 88. Chron. de Evesham, 72.
  • 89. Ibid. 95.
  • 90. V.C.H. Warw. i, 337, 338.
  • 91. Cal. Inq. p.m. v, 412.
  • 92. Cott. MS. Vesp. B. xxiv, fol. 28; cf. Chron. de Evesham, 97.
  • 93. Cott. MS. Vesp. B. xxiv, fol. 8.
  • 94. Ibid. fol. 9.
  • 95. Wm. Salt Soc. iii, 203.
  • 96. Dugd. 722.
  • 97. Ibid. 723.
  • 98. Red Bk. Exch. (Rolls Ser.), 604.
  • 99. Bk. of Fees, 509.
  • 100. Cal. Inq. p.m. i, 340.
  • 101. Ibid. ix. 118; Chanc. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), 28 (142); ibid. 208 (202).
  • 102. Cal. Inq. p.m. v. 412.
  • 103. Cal. Close 1346–9, p. 582.
  • 104. Cal. Inq. p.m. ix, 118.
  • 105. Feud. Aids, v, 191–2.
  • 106. Dugd. 723.
  • 107. MS. notes, Rev. J. H. Harvey Bloom.
  • 108. Recov. R. Trin. 18 & 19 Geo. II, ro. 46.
  • 109. Cal. Inq. p.m. v, 412.
  • 110. Feet of F. (Dugd. Soc. xi), no. 686.
  • 111. Lay Subsidy Roll (Dugd. Soc. vi), 81.
  • 112. Monast. Estates in Warwicks. 1547 (Dugd. Soc. ii), 119.
  • 113. Dugd. 722; Cal. Chart. R. ii, 64–5 (confirmation).
  • 114. P.R.O. Anct. Deeds, B. 4142.
  • 115. Ibid. B. 4146.
  • 116. Dugd. 723.
  • 117. E. Chanc. Proc. bdl. 1005, nos. 62–5. Cf. also Ct. of Req. bdl. 12, no. 114.
  • 118. Recov. R. Trin. 18 & 19 Geo. II, ro. 46.
  • 119. Fin. R. 2 Jas. I, pt. 1, no. 32.
  • 120. Feet of F. Trin. 13 Eliz.
  • 121. Twenty-five Miles round Birmingham.
  • 122. Giffard's Reg. (Worc. Hist. Soc.), 93.
  • 123. Camden Soc. (1855), pp. 41–2.
  • 124. Non. Inq. (Rec. Com.), 445.
  • 125. Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), iii, 92.
  • 126. Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), cxliii, 6.
  • 127. Pat. R. 27 Eliz. pt. 8.
  • 128. Fine R. 44 Eliz. pt. 2, no. 7; ibid. 2 Jas. I, pt. 1, no. 32.
  • 129. Reg. Thornborough, fol. 90.
  • 130. Feet of F. East. 16 Chas. I.
  • 131. Dugd. 721.
  • 132. State of Diocese of Worcester 1782–8 (in Diocesan Registry); also gives names of curates 1758–1825.
  • 133. Reg. Pepys, fol. 75.
  • 134. Feet of F. Mich. 11 Anne.
  • 135. Dugd. 721.
  • 136. Feet of F. Trin. 21 Jas. I.
  • 137. Ibid. East. 1650.
  • 138. A. Peel (ed.) The Seconde Parte of a Register, ii, 167.
  • 139. Dugd. 721.
  • 140. London Gazette, 149–51.
  • 141. Cal. Pat. Ed. VI, v, 217.
  • 142. Fine R. 2 Jas. I, pt. 1, no. 32.
  • 143. Ct. of Req. bdl. 12, no. 114.