A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 10. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1975.
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Since the mid 13th century the parish, originally called simply 'Lavington', has possessed an affix to distinguish it from West or Bishop's Lavington. (fn. 1) The earliest affix, so far as is known, was that which led eventually to the name Steeple Lavington. In the form 'stupel' it occurs in 1242. (fn. 2) That form and the later form of 'stepel' (1255) are thought to derive from the Old English stiepel and thus to refer to a church steeple. (fn. 3) The later form of 'stapul' (1316), however, clearly refers to the market for which Richard Rochelle was granted a charter in 1254, (fn. 4) and from the market derive the later names of Chepyng Lavington (e.g. 1412), Lavington Forum (e.g. 1460) (fn. 5) and, of course, Market Lavington. In the 20th century the parish is usually called Market Lavington although the form Steeple Lavington has probably had longer usage.
The parish has also been called East Lavington. That name occurs early in the 14th century (fn. 6) and recurs frequently thereafter. Although often used as an alternative name for the whole parish, it was also sometimes used to distinguish that part of it in which the church and settlement lay from Easterton and Gore, the other component parts. (fn. 7) In the following account Market Lavington will be used as the name for the whole ancient parish, and for the modern civil parish, and East Lavington only when it is necessary to distinguish that particular tithing from the tithings of Easterton and Gore.
The village lies at the foot of the north-west scarp of Salisbury Plain about 5 miles south of Devizes. (fn. 8) The ancient parish covered 4,721 a. and consisted of three virtually detached pieces. The three were East Lavington, in which lay the church and village, the tithing of Easterton, and the tithing of Gore. (fn. 9) East Lavington was long and narrow, stretching about 5 miles from north to south and mostly rather less than a mile from east to west. Easterton was much the same shape and size and, except in the extreme south, was separated from East Lavington by Fiddington, a detached part of West Lavington. Gore was a roughly triangular piece of land with a westward extension, lying nearly a mile west of East Lavington and separated from it by land in West Lavington.
The first change in the composition of the ancient parish occurred in 1874 when Easterton was hived off to form a new ecclesiastical parish and then became a separate civil one. (fn. 10) In 1884 Gore was transferred to West Lavington and at the same time Fiddington was added to East Lavington. The modern civil parish, therefore, consists of the former tithings of East Lavington and Fiddington and covers 3,806 a. (fn. 11) The addition of Fiddington brought in a strip about ½ mile wide along almost the entire length of East Lavington's eastern boundary and an area in the north, including Dewey's Water, Black Dog, and Heron Bridge.
Apart from a small outcrop of Portland Beds the northern part of the parish lies on the Gault Clay at about 250 ft. The clay was exploited for bricks for local use from at least the mid 17th century until the early 20th. (fn. 12) From the Gault the land rises to a ridge of Upper Greensand reaching about 300 ft. at the top of Ledge Hill. Between the northern boundary and Ledge Hill lay the common meadows, inclosed in the 17th century. (fn. 13)
The region of the ridge is known as 'the Sands'. It was mostly common land, sometimes called 'heath', until, with the exception of a small piece at the top of the hill, it was inclosed in the 17th century. (fn. 14) The excluded parcel remained as a common called East Lavington Common in the later 18th century, (fn. 15) and in the 20th century was the site of the parish allotments. (fn. 16) The road running by it is known locally as Common Road. (fn. 17) The light fertile soil of that part of the parish has provided sites for several small commercial orchards and market-gardens. A cherry orchard there in 1764 seems to have become in the 19th century a sort of pleasure-ground for the surrounding district. (fn. 18)
A house, called by 1662 the Lodge, (fn. 19) stood next to the cherry orchard. Its name and position on the eminence of the ridge suggest the possibility that it might once have been a hunting-lodge overlooking West Park below, but there is no more evidence for that conjecture. In 1773 two buildings stood on the site. (fn. 20) The Lodge was there in 1840, but had gone by 1889. (fn. 21) In 1972 a small summer-house and a stable of 18th-century date stood there.
From the high ground Spin Hill leads southwards down to the lightly wooded valley of a stream. On the stream, a little to the north-east, is Northbrook, perhaps the site of an early settlement. In 1972 it consisted of a scatter of cottages ranging in date from the 17th century, and had been extended up both sides of the valley by some 20th-century building. From the stream the land rises steeply and then falls again towards the village situated on the edge of the greensand. Beyond the village it crosses the Lower Chalk up Lavington Hill to a height of over 600 ft. It then dips and levels off over the Middle and Upper Chalk to about 500 ft. on the top of Salisbury Plain. The marly mixture of clay with the Lower Chalk has given the name of 'the Clays' to the area immediately south of the village. Here and higher up Lavington Hill were the common arable fields. Beyond on the thinner soils of the Upper Chalk flocks of over 1,000 sheep grazed in the Middle Ages. (fn. 22) Four or five isolated farm-houses were situated in this upland part of the parish until the 20th century.
Approximately half the parish lies on the chalk upland but in 1972 less than half that land was available for unrestricted agricultural use. Between 1897 and 1911 over 2,000 a. were acquired by the War Department as artillery ranges. (fn. 23) Since then only when firing is not in progress has it been possible to penetrate beyond the top of Lavington Hill and all the downland farm-houses have been destroyed.
Numerous springs emerge from the greensand near the village and flow into a stream which rises in Easterton and flows westwards past Northbrook and Lady Wood meads to Russell Mill. (fn. 24) There it joins another stream rising in West Lavington and the combined streams form the western boundary of the parish. A spring on the southern edge of the village, known as Broadwell, was until 1936 a main source of water for the inhabitants. In 1867 a hydraulic ram was installed which diverted water to the Manor House and some of the farms belonging to the estate. (fn. 25) Westwards the spring was dammed to provide a sheep-wash, and westwards again in the 20th century to form the lake in the grounds of Clyffe Hall. (fn. 26) A stream in the northern part of the parish, formerly the boundary between Market Lavington and Fiddington, is crossed at Dewey's Water by Black Dog Bridge. Another, part of the northern boundary of the modern parish, is crossed by Heron Bridge.
The parish has been crossed by two or three important routes. The track known as the Ridge Way, running along the escarpment of the Plain, passes within ½ mile of the village. It is named as a field boundary in 1225. (fn. 27) That from Pewsey to Westbury, below the Plain, remains a fairly busy east-west route and provides a link for Market Lavington with the west Wilts. towns. The other road was the highroad from Devizes to Salisbury. It came into the parish at Dewey's Water, entered the village as Parsonage Lane, and left it as White Street. Thence it climbed Lavington Hill and crossed the Plain to Salisbury, running east of Tilshead and Shrewton. A sign-post, standing where the road meets another coming up from Urchfont, is thought to be the 'old way-post' featured in the legend of the Dead Drummer in the Ingoldsby Legends and illustrated by George Cruickshank. (fn. 28) It was restored by local enterprise in 1958. (fn. 29) The east-west road and that part of the Salisbury Plain road between the top of Lavington Hill and Dewey's Water were turnpiked under an Act of 1757–8. (fn. 30) In 1825 Amram Edwards Saunders (d. 1849), of Russell Mill, achieved the removal of all the turnpike gates within the parish. (fn. 31) The road over the Plain was closed to the public after the War Department purchases of 1889 (fn. 32) and the road through West Lavington, bypassing Market Lavington, then became the main road between Devizes and Salisbury.
The Ridge Way and a lower track connected Market Lavington with its detached tithing of Gore. The tithing, as its name implies, (fn. 33) consisted of a wedge-shaped piece of land running south for about a mile from Gore Cross, and a long narrow tail of land, turning and extending over another mile westwards. It lay entirely upon the Middle and Upper Chalk of Salisbury Plain. In 1973 there was but a single house, the former farm-house, and no traces remained of any early settlement. Gore contributed 20s. to the subsidy of 1334, the second smallest contribution in the hundred of Dole in which it lay. (fn. 34) In 1377 it had 12 poll-tax payers. (fn. 35) There was a chapel disused but still standing in the 16th century. (fn. 36) In 1891 17 people lived in Gore, (fn. 37) most of them presumably farm labourers.
The railway line between Patney and Chirton junction and Westbury, opened in 1900, (fn. 38) runs across the north of the parish. The former Lavington station stood within West Lavington.
The nucleus of the village is compactly built along Church Street and its western continuation, High Street, with its church at the western end and its small market-place roughly in the centre. It is predominantly a village of red brick houses with tiled roofs but it did not acquire that appearance until the 18th century and many of the houses are older and have been refronted. Two buildings, Lloyds Bank and the King's Arms, are jettied towards the street and there is evidence for frontages of this type on a number of houses all of which are probably of the 16th or early 17th century.
From about that period there are a number of other timber-framed houses with vertical fronts, like nos. 22 and 30 High Street. The latter has a projecting first-floor oriel window with ovolomoulded mullions which is supported on scroll brackets. The most common surviving 17thcentury house-type has three rooms in line along the street frontage, an end bay often being higher than the other two and perhaps originally gabled. Palm House (nos. 48 and 50), which was once a single house, is of this type and has two storeys, attics, and cellars, and a later service range at the back. The main chimney stack is commonly on the rear wall, presumably to make the most space available along the street frontage. Brick was in use for chimney stacks by the 17th century and may have been used for walling at that time in the building now called Market House. Party walls are commonly of rough blocks of greensand at all periods up to the 19th century when it was sometimes used in combination with brick for the frontages of small houses. After 1700 most of the houses conform to the common types of southern England both in their plan and materials, fashions being derived from Devizes and beyond.
The eastern end of the village, which goes right up to the boundary with Fiddington, has been known as Townsend from at least the 17th century. (fn. 39) Ivy Lodge there was the home in the 19th century of Thomas Stobbert after whose family a lane in that part of the village is named. (fn. 40) West of Ivy Lodge is the house formerly called the Chantry House, but in 1972 known as Wolseley House. Outwardly it appears to date from the 18th and 19th centuries but inside there are a few 17th-century features. Until the 1960s it had a thatched extension to the west. (fn. 41) The house presumably stands on land once belonging to the chantry in the parish church. (fn. 42) Chantry Bridge, at the other end of the village opposite the church, probably has the same association. On the south side of High Street the Workman's Hall, with its classical front of brick and stone, was built in 1865 by Edward Saunders who stipulated that the strictest rules of temperance should be observed within it. (fn. 43) Palm House (nos. 48 and 50) was used for a time in the 19th century as a private lunatic asylum which later moved to Fiddington House. (fn. 44) There are fewer houses in Church Street and, with the exception of the present Vicarage, they are less substantial than those towards the eastern end of High Street.
The appearance of the market-place has been transformed since the Second World War. Most of the houses on the west side were replaced in 1958 by council housing, including some old peoples' bungalows. (fn. 45) The houses on the north side were demolished soon afterwards. A house on the east side, in which the manor courts were held and market tolls paid, was pulled down in 1961. (fn. 46) Another house standing at the south-west corner and used for market business was demolished in 1960. (fn. 47) The surface of the market-place was metalled for the first time in the 1960s. (fn. 48) In 1972 only two of the older houses which had flanked the market-place remained, and the open space was used as a car park.
Market Lavington has been well supplied with inns. In 1620 eight inn- or alehouse-keepers bound themselves in Lenten recognizances. (fn. 49) In 1756 the village had about the same provision. (fn. 50) In 1764 the Angel, the Dragon, the Bell, and the Lamb were included in the sale of Lord Abingdon's lands. (fn. 51) Besides the Angel, the Dragon (by then called the Green Dragon), and the Bell, there were in 1822 the King's Arms and the New Inn. (fn. 52) The Angel changed its name to the Volunteer Arms in 1876, (fn. 53) and the New Inn to the Drummer Boy in 1972, (fn. 54) and they, with the King's Arms and the Green Dragon were still in business in 1972. The Bell was burnt down in 1880. (fn. 55) The Black Dog, 2 miles northwest of the village, was closed in 1900 and its licence transferred to the inn newly opened at Lavington station. (fn. 56)
Many of the farm-houses were built either in or close to the village so that they were conveniently situated roughly half-way between the pasture in the north and the arable fields in the south. (fn. 57) In Parsonage Lane lay the farm-house of Lavington (Edington) Rector manor, later called the Old House, and nearly opposite was Parsonage House, probably the farmstead of the parsonage estate. In White Street Knap Farm shows signs of having been a large house in the 17th century and has been much altered in the 18th and 19th centuries. The former Grove Farm lies just below the church and several other houses in the village are known once to have been farm-houses.
The village has a number of estate cottages built by the Pleydell-Bouveries in the 1860s at about the time that the Manor House was built. Among them are a pair of cottages on the site of the former Parsonage House and the police house and adjoining house in High Street built in 1865. (fn. 58) The Pleydell-Bouveries also built a rackets court in Parsonage Lane which after the Second World War was converted into a house and called the Fives Court. (fn. 59)
The first council houses were built at Townsend in 1924. (fn. 60) Four years later the privately developed Alban estate was laid out at the Spring along the eastern approach to the village. Council development on both sides of Spin Hill and at Northbrook followed in the 1930s. After the war council houses were built at the foot of Lavington Hill and others added to the estates at Townsend and Northbrook. In 1970 Bouverie Drive, a private development, was built on the east side of Parsonage Lane and very soon afterwards Canada Rise, likewise a private estate, was built on the west side.
In the 1950s Market Lavington became one of the Wiltshire villages to be selected by the county council for considerable future enlargement. (fn. 61) A plan for that development was not, however, drawn up until 1971 and was under discussion in 1972. (fn. 62)
In 1801 the population of Market Lavington was 1,238, including 320 people in Easterton. (fn. 63) It rose steadily to 1,721, including 532 in Easterton, in 1851, but dropped in 1861 to 1,583, 461 of whom were in Easterton. The decrease was attributed to the closure of a works and foundry in Market Lavington, but the population was down again in 1871 when numbers were 1,563, including 470 in Easterton. By 1881 Easterton was a separate parish, with a population of 384, and the Market Lavington figure that year was 1,022. By 1891 Gore, population 17, had been transferred to West Lavington, and Fiddington and Black Dog, population 163, had been added to Market Lavington, giving it a population of 1,043. A decline in numbers followed and in 1921 the population was 904. Thereafter it began to rise and in 1971 was 1,550. (fn. 64)
The best-known person connected with Market Lavington is Thomas Tanner (1674–1735), bishop of St. Asaph and author of Notitia Monastica. (fn. 65) His father was vicar there after 1671 and Thomas was born in the parish. He founded a parish charity. (fn. 66) William Saunders, journalist and politician (1823– 95), was born at Russell Mill. (fn. 67) He was educated in Devizes and then worked briefly in his father's flour mill in Market Lavington. (fn. 68)
As will be shown below, Easterton seems to have been so named only from the late 14th century. (fn. 69) Until then it shared the name Lavington with the rest of the parish. It remained a tithing of Market Lavington until the 19th century when, since it had been relieving its own poor from the mid 18th century, it was deemed to be a separate civil parish. (fn. 70) In 1934 Eastcott, previously part of Urchfont, was added to it, making a parish of 3,045 a. (fn. 71)
It is a typical long and narrow spring-line parish. (fn. 72) At its broadest it is less than 1½ mile wide, while length-wise it measures more than 5 miles. Its geology and configuration are virtually the same as those of East Lavington. In the north it touches the same outcrop of Portland Beds. Southwards it ranges over the successive belts of Gault and Upper Greensand, and then ascends the Lower and Middle Chalk to the Upper Chalk of Salisbury Plain. There the land is about 550 ft., while on the Gault in the north it is only about 250 ft.
With such similarities of soil and sub-soil, Easterton has much the same landscape as Market Lavington. The northern part of the parish was probably inclosed in the 17th century as was some of the common land of the sandy region known in that century as 'heath'. (fn. 73) The greensand part of the parish was even more fully exploited for marketgardening in the 19th century than the corresponding region in Market Lavington. It has long been called 'the Sands'. As at Market Lavington, the area south of the village is known as 'the Clays' and there and higher up the escarpment of the Plain were the arable fields inclosed late in the 18th century. (fn. 74) Isolated farm-houses on the downs beyond called Blackheath, Pond, and Easterton Hill Farms (fn. 75) have disappeared since the War Department acquired most of the southern part of the parish for artillery ranges in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. (fn. 76)
The so-called Ridge Way passes within a mile of the village. Two roads ran up to it from the village and, until closed by the Army, continued beyond to join other tracks crossing the Plain. The main road from Pewsey to Market Lavington forms the village street. In the 18th century three lanes led north-westward from it up the steep greensand ridge to 'the Sands'. There other lanes and tracks gave access to the fields (fn. 77) and to the remote Forest Farm. The approach to that farm runs through a thick belt of trees. Beyond the farm-house the railway line between Patney and Westbury was constructed early in the 20th century. (fn. 78) In 1972 the lanes and tracks remained, but only one metalled road led through from the village to 'the Sands'. There it joined King's Road (fn. 79) leading to the top of Spin and Ledge Hills in Market Lavington.
The village street is bordered on its west side for part of its course by a stream. At the northern end of the street stands the church, the former school, and the jam factory. At the other end is the Manor House with the field known as Court Close opposite. (fn. 80) Skirting Court Close, White Street led to the open arable fields and the downland. On a road branching from it, which in the 18th century led to Eastcott in Urchfont by-passing the village, stand two former farm-houses, Fairfield Farm and Willoughbys. Both are fairly substantial houses, dating from the 17th century. Halstead Farm, a brick house of the 18th century, stands in the village street. It is a modest building but larger than many of the houses along the street which are chiefly small and rather insignificant. The Old Cottage on the east side has the date 1619 on it. A few other cottages with thatched roofs and greensand rubble walling are possibly of 18th-century date. Two larger houses, Easterton House, once the Vicarage, (fn. 81) and Kestrels lie away from the village to the northwest. Kestrels was probably built as an L-shaped house in the 1730s. By 1839 it belonged to Benjamin Hayward who lived there until his death c. 1876. (fn. 82) As a lover of falconry, Hayward is thought to have given the house its present name. It has a south front of five bays containing the staircase and two principal rooms and a short kitchen-wing on the north. The L-shape was filled-in in the 20th century to form the present west and north-west fronts. Within is a contemporary staircase and panelling of oak and an elegant plaster ceiling.
In the mid 19th century the village had two inns, the Cow, (fn. 83) and the Royal Oak. In 1972 there was only the Oak, a timber-framed building with thatched roof, dating from the 17th century.
The first council houses were built in Oak Lane in 1925–6. (fn. 84) Others followed in White Street in 1932. After the war more were built between the Drove and Oak Lane. In the 1960s Easterton was one of the Wiltshire villages suggested for some expansion, and in 1972 there was a plan for limited development. (fn. 85)
Until 1881 the population of Easterton was included in the Census with that of East Lavington. In 1881 there were 384 people in Easterton. The population tended to decline thereafter, but in 1951 after the addition of Eastcott it was 401. In 1971 it was 470. (fn. 86)
Manors and other Estates.
Before the Conquest an estate in Lavington, which from later evidence can be identified as Market Lavington, was held by Queen Edith. After the Conquest it was given to Robert the marshal, who also held the detached part of Market Lavington called Gore but no other land in Wiltshire. (fn. 87) By 1166 land in Lavington was held by Peter de la Mare (fn. 88) but that probably represented only half the manor, for in 1194–5 it was divided between Peter's successor Robert de la Mare and William Rochelle. (fn. 89) By 1202 Robert de la Mare had been succeeded by another Peter de la Mare (fn. 90) and in 1210 another Robert had succeeded that Peter. (fn. 91) By 1211 Robert had been succeeded by Peter, a minor at the time. (fn. 92) Peter de la Mare later joined the rebels against King John and as a result forfeited his estate in Market Lavington, but it was restored to him in 1217. (fn. 93) Three years later the division of the estate, made in the 12th century, led to a dispute in the king's court in which William Rochelle claimed the manor of Lavington from Peter de la Mare. (fn. 94) The dispute was eventually settled in 1225 when a new partition was made between them. (fn. 95)
The service by which the manor was held was at the same time divided between the two lords. (fn. 96) It consisted of castle-guard duty at Devizes for 40 days in time of war or an annual rent of 20s. in peace time. (fn. 97) Both manors were at least until the 15th century said to be held of Devizes Castle.
The half manor allotted to Peter de la Mare is that which came to be called first LAVINGTON BAYNTON and later LAVINGTON DAUNTSEY. It passed from Peter in 1254 to his son Robert, (fn. 98) from Robert in 1272 to his son Peter, (fn. 99) from Peter in 1292 to his son Robert, (fn. 100) and from Robert in 1308 to his son Peter. (fn. 101) It was the last Peter who in 1318 received a grant of free warren in his demesne lands in Market Lavington, (fn. 102) and in the 1340s founded a chantry in the church there. (fn. 103) He was succeeded in 1349 by his son Robert, (fn. 104) who died in 1382 holding the manor jointly with his wife Maud. (fn. 105) Maud was followed in 1404 by her daughter Willelma, wife of Sir John Roche, (fn. 106) and as a widow she conveyed the manor in 1410 to her daughter Elizabeth, wife of Sir Walter Beauchamp. (fn. 107) From Elizabeth and Walter the manor descended like that of Whaddon to John Baynton (d. 1516) and, still like Whaddon, to John's son Sir Edward Baynton (d. 1545). (fn. 108) In 1541, after the dissolution of the house of Bonhommes at Edington, the manor which had descended from the Rochelles to Edington, as shown below, was granted to Sir Edward and thenceforth the two manors, distinguished by the names of Lavington Baynton or Dauntsey and Lavington Rector, descended together. (fn. 109)
In 1522 Sir Edward Baynton leased the manor he then held, namely Lavington Baynton, to William Dauntsey, a merchant of the staple, for a term of years. In 1540–1 Dauntsey assigned the lease to Richard Blake. Richard died c. 1550, devising the remainder of the lease to a son Robert. Robert's occupation, however, was contested by Isabel Baynton, widow of Sir Edward, and he was apparently forcibly ejected. (fn. 110)
The first member of the Rochelle family to hold land in Market Lavington was apparently Godfrey, who acquired part of the manor in the time of Henry I. Godfrey was succeeded by a daughter Agnes, and she by a son Richard. Richard was succeeded before 1195 by a son William (fn. 111) and William before 1221 by a son of the same name. (fn. 112) It was the younger William who claimed the manor from Peter de la Mare and who was allotted a moiety of it and the advowson of the church under the partition of 1225. (fn. 113) William was dead by 1234 when the custody of his heir and his lands were granted to Philip Daubeney. (fn. 114) The heir was Richard Rochelle to whom a charter for a market at Market Lavington was granted in 1254. (fn. 115) Before his death c. 1276 Richard enfeoffed Emily, widow of Stephen Longespée, in his lands in Market Lavington. (fn. 116) Emily died a little before Richard and her heirs were her two daughters Ela, wife of Roger la Zouche, and Emily, wife of Maurice FitzMaurice, who after her husband's death styled herself Longespee. (fn. 117) The manor was then divided between the two daughters, the market and advowson of the church forming part of Emily's share. (fn. 118) Ela la Zouche died shortly after her mother and her heir was her son Alan, a minor at that time. (fn. 119) Alan died in 1314 having granted his share in the manor to a kinsman John la Zouche for life, with remainder to William Forstal for ever in return for an annual rent payable to Alan and his heirs. (fn. 120) Emily (FitzMaurice) Longespée died in 1331, having granted her share in the manor to William Forstal. (fn. 121) The claim of John Forstal, William's son, to the entire manor was subsequently disputed but was finally settled in his favour. (fn. 122) By 1361 John Forstal had been succeeded by his brother Robert, (fn. 123) and in 1368 Robert conveyed the manor to the rector and house of Bonhommes at Edington. (fn. 124)
The annual rent charged upon the manor and payable to Alan la Zouche and his heirs passed in 1314 to Alan's daughters Ellen, wife of Sir Nicholas Seymour, and Maud, wife of Sir Robert Holand. (fn. 125) Ellen and Nicholas immediately granted their share to Maud and Robert (fn. 126) and in 1334 Maud conveyed the entire rent to the warden of St. Katherine's chapel, Wanborough. (fn. 127) Liability for the rentcharge passed like the manor to Edington (fn. 128) but for a time at any rate it was not paid. It was subsequently claimed by the president and scholars of Magdalen College, Oxford, (fn. 129) to whom the advowson of St. Katherine's chapel belonged (fn. 130) and was apparently being paid to them at the time of the dissolution of Edington. (fn. 131)
The superior of the house of Bonhommes at Edington was known as the rector and he and his house held the manor, later know as LAVINGTON RECTOR, until the Dissolution. (fn. 132) In 1541 it was granted by the Crown to Sir Edward Baynton and Isabel, his wife, for life with remainder to their son Henry. (fn. 133) Sir Edward already held the manor, to become called Lavington Baynton, which had descended to him from the de la Mares. (fn. 134) He died in 1545 and his widow Isabel, who married secondly Sir James Stumpe (d. 1563), held both manors until her death in 1573. (fn. 135) Henry Baynton sold them in 1590 to Sir John Dauntsey. (fn. 136) Dauntsey died in 1631 when his heir was his granddaughter Elizabeth, wife of Sir John Danvers. (fn. 137) Sir John died in 1655 and, his son Henry having died childless in 1654, Sir John's estates passed to his daughters Elizabeth, wife of Robert Villiers, who assumed the name Danvers, and Anne, wife of Sir Henry Lee. (fn. 138) Market Lavington seems to have passed to Anne (d. 1659), (fn. 139) for in 1662 it was held in trust for her two daughters Eleanor and Anne who were at that time minors. (fn. 140) Eleanor married James, Lord Norreys, and Anne married Thomas Wharton (cr. marquess of Wharton and Malmesbury 1714). (fn. 141) In 1681 Anne and Thomas Wharton conveyed their share to Eleanor and James Norreys. (fn. 142) Lord Norreys became earl of Abingdon in 1682 and Market Lavington descended like Westbury (fn. 143) with the title until 1764 when Lord Abingdon's estates were put up for sale. (fn. 144) Still divided into two manors, then called Lavington Dauntsey and Lavington Rector, Market Lavington was acquired by William Bouverie, earl of Radnor (d. 1776). Market Lavington then passed with the earldom to William PleydellBouverie, earl of Radnor (d. 1869), who conveyed it to his second son Edward Pleydell-Bouverie (d. 1889), and from Edward it passed to his eldest son Walter (d. 1893). (fn. 145) In 1902 Market Lavington was bought by Charles Awdry. (fn. 146) The Manor House was at that time leased to the Marquise de la Valette but from 1909 until his death in 1912 (fn. 147) it was occupied by Mr. Awdry. The estate was much depleted by the compulsory sale in 1910 of all the hill-farms to the War Office (fn. 148) and it was further broken up at sales in 1914, 1916, and 1929. (fn. 149)
When Market Lavington was divided between Peter de la Mare and William Rochelle in 1225 there were apparently two capital messuages. One had belonged to William's father and so was allotted to William. The other, to which were attached a garden, a mill, a stew-pond (vivarium), and a little grove (grova) near the court, was allotted to Peter. (fn. 150)
In the earlier 14th century a substantial aisled hall was built in the parish. Its size and style indicate that it was a house of some importance and later evidence suggests that it may have been the manor-house of the Rochelle manor, later Lavington Rector. If the building dates from the earlier 14th century, as is thought, it was erected before Edington acquired the manor. The house in which the hall is incorporated, known in 1972 as the Old House, was in 1840 the farm-house of Rector's farm, as the demesne farm of Lavington Rector was called. House and farm then belonged to Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie of Clyffe Hall (d. 1850). (fn. 151)
The Old House is situated about 50 yds. east of the parish church on the crest of the ridge and overlooking the village. The hall at the centre of the house is approximately 35 ft. by 22 ft. 6 in., with part of a contemporary two-storeyed cross-wing to the west. At the opposite end of the hall there is evidence of a cross-passage and there may formerly have been a second cross-wing which contained service rooms. In the 16th century an upper floor and chimney stack were put into the hall and the floor of the surviving cross-wing was renewed. At that time the wing appears to have had two rooms on each floor, an external stack serving those on the north and a small chamber, possibly a garderobe, against the stack. The southern end of the cross-wing appears to have been replaced in the 18th century when a new block, which partly screens the hall, was added. A short wing at the east end of the same front may be early-19th-century in origin. There was a general restoration in 1873, when much of the fenestration was altered, and the house has been extended to the east in the present century. A fivebay barn to the north-east is dated 1820.
After Lord Radnor (d. 1776) acquired the Market Lavington manors towards the end of the 18th century his agent occupied the Old House for many years. Anne Pleydell-Bouverie (d. 1940) lived there for about 50 years from 1889. (fn. 152) In 1972 it was the home of Col. Kenneth Farquhar.
The first lord of the manor known for certain to have lived in the parish was Edward PleydellBouverie (d. 1889). With Ewan Christian as his architect he built in 1865 the Manor House near the western boundary of the parish. (fn. 153) It is a large, rambling house in a Tudor style with an imposing clock-tower, and is built of red, locally-made brick with stone dressings. (fn. 154) The main block, on the south-west, contains a galleried hall. An extension linking the former stable block to the house was made after the Manor House became part of Dauntsey's School in 1929. Since then it has been adapted to provide residential accommodation for the younger boys. (fn. 155)
The main approach to the house is through formal gates opening from the high road at Littleton Pannell (in West Lavington). There is another entrance with a lodge near the top of Spin Hill. To the west of the house the Pleydell-Bouveries made a large exercise ring, overgrown in 1972, for their hunters. At South Park in the south-east corner of the grounds Charles Awdry laid down a cricket field on which first-class matches were played in the early 20th century. (fn. 156) In 1962 it became the site for a secondary modern school. (fn. 157)
Easterton does not occur by that name in Domesday but since, as shown below, the name emerges only at the end of the 14th century, land there is presumably amongst the 13 hides and 2½ virgates which, according to the Geld Rolls, lay in Rowborough hundred, but which have not been precisely located. (fn. 158) There is some later evidence to suggest that the land in Lavington, which in 1086 Robert Blount had given to his sons-in-law, William de Aldrie and Robert de Aumale, (fn. 159) possibly lay not in West Lavington but in that part of Market Lavington which became called EASTERTON. At the end of the 12th century Robert Blount's fee had descended to his grandson William Blount under whom Geoffrey, son of Peter, and William Briwere were tenants. (fn. 160) No more is heard of Geoffrey's connexion with Lavington, but by 1200 an estate called the manor of Lavington had emerged and was confirmed to William Briwere by the king. Briwere was said to have acquired it from Reynold de Aumale, perhaps a descendant of the Robert de Aumale of 1086. (fn. 161)
William Briwere died in 1226 and his son William died without issue in 1232. (fn. 162) The Briwere estates were then divided amongst William's sisters and Lavington was allotted to Margaret, wife of William de la Ferté. Gundreda, daughter and heir of Margaret and William, married Pain of Chaworth and they were succeeded by a son Patrick. (fn. 163) Patrick died in 1257 (fn. 164) and was succeeded first by a son Pain, who died childless, and then by a second son Patrick. Patrick's heir in 1315 was his daughter Maud who married Henry, earl of Lancaster (d. 1345). (fn. 165) Their son Henry was created duke of Lancaster and died in 1361 when his lands, including the manor of Lavington, were divided between his daughters Maud, wife of William, duke of Bavaria, and Blanche, wife of John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster (d. 1399). (fn. 166) Lavington, by then sometimes called Lavington Chaworth, (fn. 167) was allotted to Maud. She, however, died childless two years after her father and was succeeded by Blanche. (fn. 168) Henry, son of Blanche and John of Gaunt, succeeded to the throne as Henry IV in 1399 and the manor of Lavington thus became annexed to the Crown as part of the duchy of Lancaster. At about this date the manor, hitherto called Lavington, or Steeple Lavington, began to be called Easterton. (fn. 169)
In 1351 Hugh of Berwick had a grant of the manor for life. (fn. 170) In 1366 it was held by Nicholas Kymbell, (fn. 171) and in 1374, as the manor of Easterton, John of Gaunt granted it to Kymbell for life. (fn. 172) In 1401 Henry IV granted it to Sir Walter and Elizabeth Beauchamp for their lives. (fn. 173) In 1415 Easterton was one of the duchy manors placed in feoffment for the performance of Henry V's will. (fn. 174) Restored in 1443, it was immediately placed in feoffment again for the performance of Henry VI's will. (fn. 175) It was held by Elizabeth, queen of Edward IV, for life. (fn. 176) In 1507 Henry VII granted it to John Sainsbury for 7 years. (fn. 177) Edward VI leased it for 31 years to Jane Burley, widow, c. 1549–50, and Jane was succeeded as lessee c. 1560 by George Burley. (fn. 178)
In 1567 a lease was granted to Walter Fish to run for 31 years from the termination of the lease to Jane Burley, (fn. 179) but Fish apparently assigned his lease to a member of the Burley family. (fn. 180) In 1609–10 Elizabeth Burley, widow, was lessee and that year she surrendered her lease to John Burley. (fn. 181)
In 1603 Sir John Fortescue, chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster in 1601, acquired a grant in fee of the manor of Easterton. (fn. 182) Sir John was succeeded in 1607 by his son Francis. (fn. 183) In 1611 Sir Francis Fortescue, with his brother Sir William Fortescue, conveyed the manor, excepting the freehold lands which went to make up the manor of Easterton Gernon, (fn. 184) to John Burley, the lessee. (fn. 185)
In 1615 John Burley conveyed the manor, again excepting the same freehold lands, to Thomas Grubbe of Potterne. (fn. 186) Easterton then passed from father to son in the Grubbe family until the death of Thomas Grubbe in 1669. (fn. 187) By that date it was sometimes called Easterton Kingside to distinguish it from the manor of Easterton Gernon. (fn. 188) Thomas was succeeded by his daughter Mary, wife of Thomas Hunt, and Mary's grandson Thomas Grubbe assumed the surname Hunt-Grubbe, thus becoming Thomas Grubbe Hunt-Grubbe. (fn. 189) Easterton continued to descend in the Hunt-Grubbe family from father to son until the death of William Hunt-Grubbe in 1820. (fn. 190) It was then acquired by Henry Stephen Olivier of Potterne and was included in the sales of his lands in 1866. (fn. 191) The manorial rights were said to be included in the sale of Forest farm, a small farm in the north-east corner of Easterton, which was probably bought by Thomas Jackson, the tenant farmer. (fn. 192) Jackson was at Forest Farm in 1871. (fn. 193) By 1890 he had been succeeded by Frederick Sainsbury. (fn. 194) Since then the farm has had several owners. The farm-house was apparently rebuilt in 1845, for it bears that date and the initials of H. S. Olivier.
There was probably never a manor-house at Easterton, for the Hunt-Grubbes, lords of the manor from 1615 to 1820, lived outside the tithing. A house at Easterton, was however, built by that family at some date, allegedly as a dower-house. (fn. 195) In the 19th century it was sold to G. B. Rogers, sometime curate at Imber. Rogers gave the house as a Vicarage when Easterton became a separate ecclesiastical parish in 1873. (fn. 196) It was abandoned as a Vicarage in 1952 and in 1972, called Easterton House, it was occupied as a private house. Although no early structural features can be detected, the plan of the house suggests that it may have been built in the 17th century. It seems to have been enlarged to the north c. 1840 and again c. 1890 when the main south range was heightened by one storey.
The origins and much of the early history of the estate later to be known as the manor of EASTERTON GERNON are obscure. In 1216 William Briwere (d. 1226) regained seisin of land in Lavington, which had been held by Maud, formerly the wife of William Edgeworth. (fn. 197) Later evidence shows that upon the death of Edgeworth, William Briwere took back the land which was part of his estate in Lavington and resettled it upon Maud, who was presumably either his daughter or sister, and her second husband Roger Gernon. (fn. 198) That settlement led to dispute in 1225 when William Blount, as overlord of Briwere's fee in Lavington (see above), claimed feudal dues and services from Gernon. Blount's overlordship was eventually acknowledged by William Briwere, (fn. 199) and in 1242 Roger Gernon was said to be holding a knight's fee in Lavington of William Blount. (fn. 200)
The subsequent descent of the Gernon holding in Lavington is made difficult by the great variety of names given to it, but it seems almost certain that the estate called the manor of Lavington Gernon during the 14th and 15th centuries is the same as that called the manor of Easterton Gernon (or Garnham) in the succeeding centuries: in the 16th century it is sometimes called Easterton Garneham or Lavington Garneham (fn. 201) and in the 17th century it is occasionally called Easterton Gernon alias Lavington Gernon alias East Lavington. (fn. 202) The main manor of Easterton was so called only after the end of the 14th century and until then was called Lavington. (fn. 203)
James Gernon of Lavington occurs in 1294, (fn. 204) and in 1302 John Gernon and Alice his wife settled upon themselves a substantial amount of land, including a messuage and a mill, in Steeple Lavington. (fn. 205) No later references to the Gernons in Lavington have been found. In 1379 John son of John of Ricote, who held for life, conveyed half the manor, then called Lavington Gernon, to Nicholas son of William Clark with remainder to John son of Fulk of Ricote. (fn. 206) A moiety of the manor, similarly named, was conveyed in 1421 by William Fowler, his wife Cecily, Richard Quartermain, and Joan his wife to Reynold Cok. (fn. 207) This was probably for a settlement upon the Fowlers, for in 1474 Richard Fowler and his wife Joan conveyed the whole manor, called Steeple Lavington alias Lavington Gernon, to Thomas Tremayll and others. (fn. 208) In 1480 William Tracy and Margaret his wife sold the manor with lands in Lavington and Easterton to Kenelm Dygas. (fn. 209) In 1494, still called Steeple Lavington or Lavington Gernon, it was settled upon Sir Alexander Baynham and his wife. (fn. 210) In 1537 half the manor, then called East Lavington or Lavington Gernon, was sold by John Peyte and Margaret his wife to William Willington. (fn. 211) In 1572 Jane Westwood and her son Anthony Nye conveyed half the manor, called corruptly Easterton Garnelling and Lavington Garnelling and East Lavington, to Robert Nicholas and his son Richard. (fn. 212)
The estate known as either Lavington or Easterton Gernon was subject to the jurisdiction of the duchy of Lancaster's manor of Easterton. (fn. 213) By 1591 Robert Nicholas had made grants in fee of land within it to nine persons. (fn. 214) The subsequent descent of those nine holdings has not been traced. Robert, besides holding half the manor of Easterton Gernon, held half of an estate which included a close called Court Close, two woods called Great and Little Trolleys, and accompanying rights of common of pasture. The other half of the Court Close estate was held by Ambrose Agard, (fn. 215) who also held the other half of Easterton Gernon manor, for that year he conveyed part of it to Richard Burley and John Flower. (fn. 216) That part may have become merged in the main manor of Easterton, since Richard Burley was presumably a member of the family which acquired that manor early in the 17th century. (fn. 217) In 1596 Ambrose Agard granted his half of the Court Close estate with the residue of the moiety of Easterton Gernon manor to Edward and Jasper Nicholas, grandsons of Robert Nicholas who held the other half of the same estate in 1591. (fn. 218) The whole of the Court Close estate and more than half of Easterton Gernon manor thus came into the hands of the Nicholases, and in 1596 Robert's son Richard, with his sons Edward and Jasper, conveyed it and all the residue of Easterton Gernon manor to William Bower of West Lavington. (fn. 219) Bower at once settled the estate, then described as the manor of Easterton, Easterton Garnhame and East Lavington, upon his son William and William's wife Elizabeth. (fn. 220) Their daughter Anne married William Calley (d. 1660) in 1623, and the so-called manor descended in the Calley family until 1718 when it was sold. (fn. 221) In 1797 the estate of some 480 a., which included Court Close and the farm lying opposite it called in 1971 the Manor, was held by Jacob Giddings. (fn. 222) By 1840 it had passed to Charles Hitchcock. (fn. 223) In 1865 the owner was John Williams, (fn. 224) probably father of the John William Morgan Williams who owned the estate in 1884, and lived in the house called the Manor House until 1933. (fn. 225) The estate was broken up when the land lying in the south of the tithing was sold to the War Department in 1898 and 1911. (fn. 226)
The house known as the Manor House was built in a number of stages, all in the 17th century. The oldest part is the cross-wing at the north end and there is some evidence that it was built against an earlier range on the site of the present hall.
Before the Conquest Gore was held by Oswald and in 1086 by Robert the marshal who also held Market Lavington. (fn. 227) Like Market Lavington Gore passed to the de la Mares, and in 1167–8 it was held by Hugh de la Mare. (fn. 228) When Market Lavington was partitioned between Peter de la Mare and William Rochelle the overlordship of Gore was likewise divided between them. (fn. 229) In 1274 ¼ knight's fee in Gore was said to be held of Peter de la Mare (fn. 230) and no more is heard of the Rochelle overlordship. The overlordship was recorded in 1369 when it was said to belong to Robert de la Mare. (fn. 231)
In 1242 GORE was held of Peter de la Mare and Richard Rochelle by Andrew Blount, under whom it was held by Pain de la Lee, or Brinkworth. (fn. 232) John Blount occurs as mesne lord in 1369, (fn. 233) but the Blounts have not been found later in connexion with Gore. In 1316 the manor was said to be held by John de Combe and the abbess of Caen, (fn. 234) but the reference to the abbess may be a mistake, for there is no other evidence that Caen ever held land in Gore. In 1340 Ralph de Combe conveyed all his estate in Gore to Sir John de Moleyns, (fn. 235) who was in high favour with the king, and that year was granted wide franchises within his manors. (fn. 236) Within the great complex of estates belonging to Sir John, Gore was grouped with Leigh and Box and sometimes with Durnford and was occasionally described as a member of the manor of Leigh. (fn. 237) Almost immediately after the grant of privileges Sir John fell from favour, was accused of rebellion, and deprived of his lands. (fn. 238) By 1345, however, they had been restored to him. (fn. 239) Just over ten years later he was again outlawed and died in prison in 1359, (fn. 240) having settled Gore with the rest of his lands upon his son John and John's wife Joan with remainder to his second son William. (fn. 241) Joan survived her husband and married secondly Sir Michael Poynings who died in 1369, holding the manor in right of his wife. (fn. 242) After Joan's death, also in 1369, (fn. 243) Gore passed to William de Moleyns in accordance with the settlement made by his father.
From William de Moleyns Gore descended from father to eldest son in the de Moleyns family coming eventually to Eleanor, daughter and heir of William de Moleyns (d. 1429), wife of Robert, Lord Hungerford (d. 1464). (fn. 244) On the partition of the Hungerford estates after the death of Margaret, Baroness Botreaux, widow of Robert, Lord Hungerford (d. 1459), Gore with other properties, which had formed part of the de Moleyns inheritance, went to Mary, daughter and heir of Sir Thomas Hungerford (d. 1469). (fn. 245) Mary Hungerford married Edward, Lord Hastings (d. 1506). (fn. 246) In 1537 their son George Hastings, earl of Huntingdon, conveyed Gore to William Dauntsey, alderman of London, who was apparently acting on behalf of Stephen Agard, (fn. 247) of a family seated at Broughton (Northants.). (fn. 248) In 1603 Stephen Agard sold the manor to Richard Digges (fn. 249) and in 1614 Richard and William Digges sold it to William Bower (fn. 250) whose father had acquired an estate in Easterton nearby. (fn. 251) Bower sold Gore in 1636 to Henry Danvers, earl of Danby. (fn. 252) From Danby (d. 1644) the manor passed to his brother Sir John Danvers, the regicide, (fn. 253) and on Sir John's death in 1655 like the two Market Lavington manors to his daughter Anne, wife of Sir Henry Lee. From Anne it passed in the same way as Market Lavington to her daughter Eleanor who married James, Lord Norreys, cr. earl of Abingdon in 1682. (fn. 254) Gore continued to descend like Market Lavington until a sale of the Abingdon estates in 1764 when it was sold to Richard Low of London who conveyed it in 1784 to Thomas Edwards of Tilshead. (fn. 255) Edwards settled it upon his daughter Margaret, wife of Thomas Hayward, by whose representatives it was sold in 1867 to Frederick Stratton who still owned it c. 1896. (fn. 256)
Stratton seems to have been succeeded by two other members of the family who early in the 20th century were followed by Walter Spackman. (fn. 257) About 1910 much of the land to the east of the farm-house was bought by the War Department. (fn. 258) Soon afterwards the farm was bought by Henry William Norris Hooper who farmed it until 1931. His son Henry Norris Hooper succeeded him but almost immediately had to sell the rest of the land to the War Department. (fn. 259)
By the end of the 16th century the manor was sometimes called St. John of Gore's, which is thought to derive from the dedication of the chapel there, although no evidence for such a dedication exists. (fn. 260) That name later became corrupted to St. Joan à Gore, the name by which the farm is usually known in the 20th century. The farm-house, which has not been occupied as such for over 50 years, (fn. 261) dates from the early 19th century.
In 1343 it was claimed that 4 a. of land had belonged to the church of Market Lavington from time immemorial. (fn. 262) With the church it passed to the Bonhommes of Edington in the 14th century and was leased out by them to various farmers. The lessee immediately before the dissolution of that house in 1539 was John Sainsbury. (fn. 263)
With the rectory and advowson the church or parsonage estate passed after the Dissolution to the cathedral of St. Mary, Oxford (Christ Church), (fn. 264) and the lease for 21 years granted to John Sainsbury in 1538 was confirmed by the chapter c. 1550. (fn. 265) The estate then included the great tithes, a close of 4 a. of pasture, a mill close with 1 a. attached, and 2 yardlands distributed in the common fields. There was also grazing for 200 sheep. In 1625 William Sainsbury with Joan his wife conveyed their leasehold interest in the estate to John Merewether, (fn. 266) and it was still leased to a John Merewether in 1659. (fn. 267) By 1827 Lord Radnor (d. 1828), lord of the manors of Market Lavington, was leasing the farm which included some 76 a. (fn. 268) His son and heir continued as lessee and in 1862 bought the parsonage house from Christ Church and demolished it. (fn. 269) From him the lease passed, like the two manors of Market Lavington, to his second son Edward Pleydell-Bouverie (d. 1889) who probably bought part of the estate in 1865. (fn. 270) The rest, consisting of 26 a. of downland, was bought by the War Department in 1908. (fn. 271)
A house belonging to the parsonage estate passed with that estate to Edington in the mid 14th century. (fn. 272) It may have stood on the site of the parsonage house, in Parsonage Lane, pulled down in 1862. At that date it was long since the house had been used as a farm-house for the estate. Early in the 19th century it housed a school for a short while. (fn. 273) It was a building of some architectural distinction. (fn. 274) After its demolition an elegant shell porch and a semi-circular stone door-step from it were built into the wall surrounding the kitchen garden of the Manor House. (fn. 275)
The great tithes were leased with the parsonage estate. In 1840 rent-charges of £775 and £310 for those tithes in East Lavington and Easterton respectively were awarded to Christ Church. (fn. 276)
By 1737 Henry Chiver (later Chivers) Vince, who was lord of the manors of Sevington in Leigh de la Mere and Fiddington (Glos.), styled himself of Market Lavington. (fn. 277) It is not known precisely when the family first came to Market Lavington, but in 1737 Henry, the son of Frances Chiver and Henry Vince, built the house there eventually called Clyffe Hall. Henry Chivers Vince died in 1748 (fn. 278) and his widow died at Clyffe Hall in 1752. (fn. 279) With Clyffe Hall went some 20 a. of land which later evidence shows to have been copyhold of the manor of Lavington Rector. (fn. 280) In addition there was a small piece of leasehold land. (fn. 281)
Henry Chivers Vince, who died deeply in debt, (fn. 282) was succeeded by his son of the same name, then a minor, and for some years Clyffe Hall was let. (fn. 283) By 1814 the copyhold had been surrendered and Lord Radnor (d. 1828) conveyed Clyffe Hall with other land in the parish, formerly part of the manor of Lavington Rector, to his second son Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie. (fn. 284) Pleydell-Bouverie died in 1850 and the estate, then consisting of about 512 a., was taken in hand by Lord Radnor (d. 1869), although Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie's only daughter Louisa, widow of the Hon. Samuel Hay (d. 1847), continued to live at Clyffe Hall until her death in 1898. (fn. 285)
Edmund Clarke Schomberg (d. 1934) bought Clyffe Hall after Louisa Hay's death. (fn. 286) In 1905, however, he sold it to Sir Thomas Rolls Warrington, later Lord Warrington of Clyffe, who owned it until his death in 1937. (fn. 287) Lady Warrington sold it in 1938 to Mr. Stewart Reynolds who converted it into a hotel which he still owned and ran in 1972. (fn. 288)
The central part of Clyffe Hall was built by Henry Chivers Vince in 1737. (fn. 289) It was then a fairly small but elegant house with various distinguished features, including at least one elaborate plaster ceiling within. The cost of the house may well account for some of Vince's debts. An inventory of 1752 includes a hall, drawing room, tapestry room, a best parlour, and two little parlours. There were also yellow, red, and green rooms, and a best room. (fn. 290) The house in the 18th century was approached by an avenue leading from the south end of West Lavington High Street towards the south front. (fn. 291)
Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie, occupier from c. 1812 to 1850, added wings to both sides of the house, that on the east containing new kitchens. He also changed the main entrance from the south to the north side of the house. (fn. 292) Further additions to the wings were made c. 1899 for E. C. Schomberg, and c. 1904 the north front was decorated and the interior remodelled, by Sir Ernest Newton. Soon afterwards the east wing was again enlarged. An 18thcentury stable block stands south-east of the house. The extensive gardens, which include a lake on the south-west, were laid out by Lord and Lady Warrington.
To found his chantry in the parish church Peter de la Mare in 1343–4 gave houses, rents, and 27 a. of land with pasture for 50 sheep. (fn. 293) The chantry was dissolved in 1536 and its endowments came to Isabel, wife of Sir Edward Baynton (d. 1545). (fn. 294) They included a house with garden, orchard, and two fisheries, occupied by Richard Blake on a lease from Sir Edward. There was another house with two virgates of land and some pasture, and £3 15s. 4d. in rents from numerous cottages and smallholdings. (fn. 295) Isabel married secondly Sir James Stumpe and after his death in 1563, but ten years before hers, (fn. 296) the chantry estate was granted by the Crown to Edward Carey in fee. (fn. 297) Thereupon Carey immediately exchanged it with the Crown for the chantry manor of West Hatch (Tisbury). (fn. 298) The result of that transaction was to bring the Market Lavington chantry manor into the hands of Laurence Hyde (d. 1641) whose family were lessees of the West Hatch estate. (fn. 299) By 1618, however, there was another royal grant of the manor, this time to John Gray. (fn. 300) In 1622 under the commission for defective titles the estate was granted to John Harris and William Webb, (fn. 301) but by 1661 it had returned to the Hydes, for that year Frederick Hyde conveyed it to Gabriel Still. (fn. 302)
When acquired by Gabriel Still the chantry estate included 17 houses, 90 a. of land, and 10 a. of meadow lying in the two Lavingtons, Fiddington, Poulshot, and Seend. (fn. 303) By his will dated 1738 Gabriel Still, perhaps the son of the above, divided his chantry estate, called a manor, between his sons Gabriel and Joseph. (fn. 304) In 1784 and 1800 John Still Slade was holding part of the chantry estate as a freehold of Market Lavington manor while the rest of the estate was in the hands of the lord of that manor. (fn. 305) It has not been possible to trace the subsequent descent of the estate but it is likely that the agricultural land became merged in the Market Lavington manor estate and that the house and grounds were sold off separately.
The house once known as the Chantry House was by the mid 20th century called Wolseley House. (fn. 306) It appears to date from the 18th and 19th centuries and stands at the east end of the village on the north side of the street.
Fiddington was a tithing of West Lavington, (fn. 307) but it is possible that at an early date it formed part of Market Lavington, for in 1273 the estate, which can later be identified as FIDDINGTON manor, was made up of lands said to be in Steeple (alias Market) Lavington. (fn. 308) It was, however, by then already held of Salisbury Cathedral by the service of providing one wax taper and thus eventually came to be, like the manor of West Lavington, held of the bishop. It was said in the 15th century to be held of the bishop as of that manor. (fn. 309) It was reckoned to be in the bishop's hundred of Rowborough by 1270. (fn. 310)
Throughout the Middle Ages the manor was usually called Fifhide, sometimes with the suffix Verdon or Verdun. (fn. 311) Ralph de Verdun held land in Wiltshire in 1175–6, (fn. 312) but the family cannot be connected certainly with either of the Lavingtons until 1216 when land in Lavington, formerly of Nicholas de Verdun, a rebel, was committed by the king to Ralph de Harang. (fn. 313) The land was subsequently restored to the de Verduns, for it had passed before 1273 from Lady Clemence de Verdun to her daughter Maud Whitechurch. (fn. 314) Maud conveyed it in 1269 to Robert Walrond, (fn. 315) who died seised of it c. 1272, leaving his nephew Robert, then a minor, as his heir. (fn. 316) Robert the younger died an idiot c. 1308 (fn. 317) and his brother and heir John, likewise afflicted, died in 1309. (fn. 318) Six descendants of John's three aunts all had claims to be his heir, (fn. 319) but it was eventually found that Alan Plucknet, grandson of John's aunt, Alice, was John's rightful successor. (fn. 320) Alan, however, may not have held Fiddington for long, for in 1316 Bogo de Knovill, grandson of another aunt, was said to hold it. (fn. 321)
For the next 50 years the descent is obscure and at some date the manor was evidently subdivided. In 1383 Sir Henry Greene and his wife Maud held a half. (fn. 322) From Sir Henry (executed 1399) that half descended like the manor of Warminster to Isabel Greene, wife of Sir Richard Vere, and was divided into thirds amongst her granddaughters. (fn. 323) In the same way as Warminster the shares of those three coheirs were all conveyed in 1577 to George Tuchet, Lord Audley (d. 1617), who thus became seised of half the manor. (fn. 324)
In 1580 Lord Audley conveyed his estate to Richard Burley (fn. 325) who was probably already holding the neighbouring estate of Easterton Gernon. (fn. 326) In 1621 Richard's son Henry conveyed the Fiddington estate to William Bower. (fn. 327) William Bower's heirs were his two daughters, one of whom, Anne, married William Calley (d. 1660), and on Bower's death in 1645 Anne brought her father's Fiddington lands into the Calley family. (fn. 328)
In 1584 other land in Fiddington was held by Robert May. (fn. 329) His heir was his son Henry, who appears to have been feeble-minded, so that Robert shortly before his death settled the reversion of his lands upon his three daughters, thus barring the succession of Henry's children. (fn. 330) The Fiddington lands eventually passed to the daughters and their husbands, namely Alice, wife of Edward Horton, Mary, wife of Sir Henry Long, and Anne, wife of Jeremy Horton (nephew of Edward). Edward and Alice Horton conveyed their share to Sir Henry Long in 1602. John Horton, son of Jeremy and Anne, conveyed his share likewise in 1610, so that Sir Henry Long thus became seised of that part of the estate which his father-in-law had held at his death in 1584. (fn. 331) In 1620 and 1621 Sir Henry's heirs granted the Fiddington land to Ralph Allen, who in 1631 conveyed it, then said to consist of half the manor, to Sir William Calley (d. 1641). (fn. 332) The other half, as shown above, came to Sir William's son William Calley through his marriage with Anne Bower.
William's widow assigned Fiddington in 1664 to her son William (d. 1670). (fn. 333) It then presumably descended like Burderop, in Chiseldon, to Oliver Calley. (fn. 334) On Oliver's death, however, in 1715 it passed, unlike Burderop, to Oliver's second son, also called Oliver (d. 1774). (fn. 335) From that Oliver, Fiddington passed successively to his nephews William Calley (d. 1775) and Thomas Browne Calley. (fn. 336) Thomas Browne Calley devised it in 1791 (fn. 337) to his wife and after her death in 1812 it passed to her son Thomas Bullock Calley (d. 1836). Thomas sold Fiddington c. 1819 (fn. 338) and soon afterwards the estate seems to have been broken up. By 1841 there were 22 landowners in the tithing. The largest farm was that lying on the downs in the south which had 414 a. and was owned by Richard Cruttwell. Fiddington farm in the north belonged to John Hayward and had 66 a. All the other holdings were small, sixteen of them having less than 20 a. (fn. 339)
Frieth farm, which geographically lies in the extreme north of the former tithing, probably formed part of the manor of West Lavington. (fn. 340) It was among the farms included in the estate of the duke of Marlborough there in the later 18th century (fn. 341) and was sold in 1920 by the duke's descendant, Viscount Churchill (d. 1934), and the ecclesiastical commissioners, the successors to the bishop's interest in the manor. (fn. 342)
Fiddington House which became a private lunatic asylum c. 1817 (fn. 343) was closed in 1962. (fn. 344) It was then pulled down. Part of the grounds had already been developed with private housing. Those houses were acquired in 1956 as homes for service families returning from the Middle East after the Suez crisis. (fn. 345) More houses have been added to the estate which is called Fiddington Clays.
Taxation assessments suggest that in the 14th century Market Lavington was a place of some prosperity. In 1334, bracketed with Wilton, it was eighteenth in a list of the eighteen most highly rated fiscal units in the county. (fn. 346) In 1377 it had 252 poll-tax payers, only five fewer than Chippenham at the same date. (fn. 347) Another hint of commercial activity in the same century comes from the fact that there were merchants, alehousekeepers, and other workers in the parish upon whose profits tithe had to be paid. (fn. 348) In spite, however, of these indications of early prosperity, the existence since the mid 13th century of a weekly market, and a situation at a fairly important road junction, Market Lavington did not develop into anything other than a town on the very smallest scale, and in the 20th century is perhaps best described as a large village. Its market was clearly overshadowed by that at Devizes, only five miles away. Its situation at the foot of Salisbury Plain perhaps did not make for very good communications. Architectural evidence shows the 18th century to have been a fairly prosperous time when the malting industry flourished and many of the houses in High Street were refronted. After the decline of that trade a few small businesses were established in the 19th and 20th centuries, including a jam factory at Easterton. The main occupation in the parish was, however, until the early 20th century, agriculture. In the 1970s farming employed but very few and it was estimated that 75 per cent of the male population worked outside the parish. (fn. 349)
Agriculture. Although there was land for 10 ploughs on the 15-hide estate at 'Lavington' in 1086, only 9 were apparently employed. Of those 9, 4 were on the 7 demesne hides and 5 on the 3 tenant hides. On the demesne were 7 serfs and the tenant hides were worked by 14 villeins and 17 bordars. The estate included 20 a. of meadow, 12 a. of wood, and a pasture a league long by a league broad. T.R.E. and in 1086 it was worth £20. (fn. 350)
Throughout the agrarian history of Market Lavington, including Easterton, it is striking how the three-fold division of the land into successive belts of clay, sand, and chalk dictated the pattern of farming. At Gore, which lay entirely upon the chalk, a simpler and more unified form of husbandry was practised.
The partition of the manor of Lavington made in 1225 (fn. 351) gives some indication of the agrarian arrangements. William Rochelle received the messuage that had been his father's and 61 parcels of arable land, totalling about 365 a. Many of the parcels consisted of one or two acres only, and the frequency with which the words 'hill' and 'down' occur in their names shows them mostly to have been scattered over the southern upland part of the tithing. The largest parcel contained 55 a. and was in the middle of 'Smalldune'. There were 32 a. at 'Dunandewei', 30 a. at 'Ramedunesnorthende', 18 a. in 'la Breche', and 17 a. at 'Ramedunesthendi'. All these were presumably south of the village. The meadows, woods, marshes, a sheep pasture, and a 'moor' were partitioned equally between the two manors. On Rochelle's manor were 6 tenants seemingly paying money rents for all services, 13 villeins, mostly holders of a virgate or half a virgate, and 6 holders of messuages which were probably houses in the village. Among the virgaters and half-virgaters were a hayward and two shepherds. A reeve had a croft and a meadow.
By 1361 the same manor was reckoned to have 110 a. of arable, roughly half of which lay in common. (fn. 352) There were 8 a. of meadow, and common pasture for 4 working cattle, 12 oxen, and 400 sheep. Rents of free tenants were 29s. Two virgates of bond land yielded 38s. for all rents and services, and there were a half-virgater and 6 cottagers. Lessees of the Rochelle manor under the Bonhommes of Edington included William Purre in 1490 and Thomas Sainsbury and John Trew in 1540. (fn. 353)
The partition of 1225 gave Peter de la Mare the other half of the manor without precisely locating it. (fn. 354) It was also, therefore, made up of scattered pieces of arable on the slope of the Plain, of grazing for sheep there, and of some of the richer pasture in the north. The same manor when surveyed in 1292 (fn. 355) had 374 a. of arable 'on the hill', described as 'poor acres', and so presumably on the Upper Chalk, 88 more fertile acres on 'sandy land', and 20 most highly valued acres on 'deep land', probably the marly soil of the Lower Chalk. There were 7 a. of meadow, pasture for 300 sheep, 16 oxen, and 6 plough-horses. Rents of freemen were 15s. and of villeins £21 2s. 3d.
A survey of the de la Mare manor in 1308 (fn. 356) possibly suggests a decline in the demesne acreage and an increase in the size or number of tenant holdings. The demesne farm was credited with 200 a. of arable, 5 a. of meadow, and common pasture for 12 oxen. There were 8 free tenants, 5 virgaters with 22 a. each, 7 half-virgaters, 9 'neifs', and 10 cottars.
After union under Sir Edward Baynton in 1541 (fn. 357) the two manors became known as Lavington Rector after the rector of Edington (formerly Rochelle) and Lavington Baynton or Dauntsey (formerly de la Mare). In 1631 Lavington Dauntsey had 200 a. of arable, the same amount as it was said to have in 1308, and 100 a. of pasture. Lavington Rector, which as later evidence shows took in most of the village, had only 40 a. of arable, 10 a. of meadow, and 12 a. of pasture. (fn. 358)
In 1662 much of the northern part of the tithing where the common meadow land lay was inclosed by agreement between the lords of the manor and freeholders and tenants. (fn. 359) Besides open common and marshland, there were common meadows called West Park, Moor mead, Wick mead, and the Upper, Middle, and Lower mead at Wick. Allotments within them were proposed for all with rights therein. Those who had only grazing rights on the common outside the meadows were awarded exclusive feeding rights in Wishmead. The lords of the manor in return for their acquiescence and the destruction of the manorial rabbit warren were awarded an allotment of land lying near the top of Spin Hill (then called Speen Lane) near the Lodge. Out of the allotment a common was set aside for the use of the poor. The common was inclosed in 1781. (fn. 360) Special provisions were also made for the maintenance of a flock, known as the Eaton flock, and for the protection of the wooding rights of the poor, since this was the only well wooded region of the tithing.
Like all parishes with a big proportion of downland there was large-scale sheep farming in the Middle Ages. The Rochelle manor had a lambfold and a sheepfold and two shepherds in 1225. (fn. 361) The two manors together probably had grazing for about 700 demesne sheep in the 13th and 14th centuries. (fn. 362) The Eaton flock of 1662 was a tenant flock of over 1,000 sheep. With the inclosure of the common meadows that year 27 a. were set aside for the flock and the after-feeding of Sandfield was reserved for the 'Eatoners'. (fn. 363)
The inclosures of 1662 were disputed by some free-holders and tenants who successfully resisted for a time the inclosures of West Park and Moor mead. (fn. 364) The greater part of the tithing north of the village was, however, inclosed by the time of the parliamentary inclosure of 1781. (fn. 365)
The land south of the village formed three distinct farming regions corresponding with the three strata of chalk on the escarpment. First was the area known as 'the Clays' from the large amount of clay intermingled with the Lower Chalk. (fn. 366) Here lay the best arable land. A three-field system could be worked, (fn. 367) although in 1827 it was said that the soil was so rich there was no fallow. (fn. 368) In 1778 'the Clays' had two sets of fields, East and West Clay and East and West Fore hill. West Clay had by then been divided into two, the higher part being kown as Upper West Clay. (fn. 369)
Across the top of East and West Fore hill ran the Ridge Way which forms a rough boundary between the Lower and Middle Chalk. (fn. 370) The area of the Middle Chalk was known as 'the Hill' and there in the late 18th century a rotation was followed which put the land after bearing two crops down to grass to be fed to sheep for two years. (fn. 371) 'The Hill' had three sets of fields, East and West Home field, East and West Middle field, and East and West Further field. (fn. 372)
Above 'the Hill' came the sheep downs on the Upper Chalk. In the 18th century those were divided into two sets of three. First came Farm down, Freemen's down, and Parsonage Ball, presumably representing a division between demesne, tenant, and glebe flocks. Above them, on the highest land, were the summer grounds similarly divided into Farm Summer down, Freemen's Summer down, and Parsonage Summer down. (fn. 373)
The open fields were said at the time of inclosure to contain 40 yardlands or 1,305 a. (fn. 374) All those on 'the Hill' were inclosed in 1781 under an Act of 1777. (fn. 375) In 'the Clays' West Clay, Upper West Clay, and West Fore hill were inclosed. The same Act regulated the common grazing rights on the downs and inclosed those pieces of meadow land north of the village which had not been inclosed in the previous century.
'The Sands', which lay north of the village, had two fields known as Great and Little Sands in the late 18th century. (fn. 376) Both were inclosed in 1781. (fn. 377) Wheat and barley were grown on the sandy soil, but the area was particularly suited to the cultivation of fruit and vegetable crops. (fn. 378) It was consequently an area much used for allotments. (fn. 379) In the 19th century vegetables from Market Lavington were sent in large quantities to Devizes, Trowbridge, Bath, and Salisbury. (fn. 380)
Although united under one lord in 1541 (fn. 381) the manors of Lavington Dauntsey and Lavington Rector for long retained their separate identities. The demesne farm of Lavington Rector became known as Rector's farm and in 1666 was held on a 99-year lease by Gabriel Still. (fn. 382) It then included lands called Home close, Walnut close, Goosemead, Lord's wood alias Lady wood, Bottom meadow, and Hamwood. In 1764 the same farm comprised over 300 a. and was leased to Richard Legge. (fn. 383) The farm became merged in the estate belonging to Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie, (fn. 384) which in 1840 had 550 a. and included the house standing north-east of the church then called simply Farm House, later known as the Old House. (fn. 385) That house was thus almost certainly the farm-house of Rector's farm. On the death of Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie in 1850 the estate reverted to Lord Radnor. (fn. 386)
Besides the 346 a. leasehold land comprising Rector's farm, the manor of Lavington Rector had in 1764 about 46 a. of other leasehold land. (fn. 387) Almost all of it consisted of smallholdings in and about the village. The same manor had 406 a. of copyhold land, including two or three holdings of a little over 50 a., but again largely made up of small plots in the village. The total acreage of Lavington Rector in 1764 was 800 a., excluding its share of the downland.
Lavington Dauntsey in 1764 had two considerable leasehold farms, the New farm of 245 a., and Davis's, or Grove farm with 339 a. There were another 190 a. of leasehold land, mostly in holdings of under 50 a. The manor had 180 a. of copyhold land, mostly consisting of small properties in the village. Its total acreage, excluding the downs, was 954 a. The downland was reckoned to be 780 a. and was shared between the two manors.
The estate comprising the two manors, which passed to the earl of Radnor in the later 18th century, included at least four farms in 1827. (fn. 388) In the extreme south lay Candown farm with 580 a. all on 'the Hill' and the downs above. In the north Wick farm had 67 a. of sand and meadow land. The two were leased together by William Smith and so formed a single farming unit of satisfactorily mixed soils. On the southern fringe of the village Knap farm had 371 a. distributed over the various parts of the tithing, and Salmon's farm had 515 a., similarly scattered. Knap and Salmon's farms were both leased by Thomas Fowle. A fifth farm, Grove farm, had not passed to the earl of Radnor but had been sold separately on the sale of Lord Abingdon's estate. (fn. 389) It comprised 339 a., much of it 'hill' land (fn. 390) and belonged in the 18th and 19th centuries to the family of Legge. (fn. 391) It later passed to the Ludlow Bruges family. (fn. 392)
The 1860s and early 1870s were a fairly prosperous period for the estate then in the ownership of Edward Pleydell-Bouverie (d. 1889) and managed by his steward. (fn. 393) Much downland was ploughed up. West Park farm-house and several estate cottages were built. By 1879, however, a time of depression had begun and the tenant of Knap farm, who farmed over 2,000 a. of 'hill' land, failed. Attempts by Edward Pleydell-Bouverie to finance that farm were unsuccessful and his son, who died soon after his father, was unable to carry on the estate.
In 1897 the first of a series of sales of land to the War Department occurred which inevitably had an effect upon the pattern of agriculture in Market Lavington. That year 364 a. on the Plain belonging to Grove farm were sold and in 1898 there was a sale of 925 a. of downland belonging to the PleydellBouverie estate. (fn. 394) In 1910 the hill farms above the Ridge Way, New farm, Philpots farm, and Candown were sold to the Army, and since the area had become a firing range, the houses were demolished. (fn. 395) Most of the rest of the downland was sold in 1911. (fn. 396) Limekiln, West Park, and Knap farms were sold in 1914. (fn. 397) Wick farm was sold in 1916. (fn. 398)
Although deprived of much 'hill' land, West Park, Knap, and Wick farms continued as mixed farms. The land on the lower slopes of the escarpment was still available for arable cultivation and a considerable amount of land in the north was under the plough in 1971. All the farms that year were mixed corn and dairy farms.
The manor in Easterton which in the mid 14th century became part of the duchy of Lancaster was extended in 1258. The demesne farm then had 146 a. of arable, 4 a. of meadow, and two inclosed meadows, one called Shortemers and the other, which had pasture for 10 oxen, Halfhyde. There was common pasture for 300 sheep. Six virgates of villein land each paid 10s. assized rent, 7 half virgates paid 3s. 4d., and there were 1 free tenant and 6 tenants at will. The total value was £10 1s. 3d. (fn. 399)
The estates of Easterton Kingside, as the duchy manor became called, and Easterton Gernon, later sometimes Garnham, had their lands stretched out over the clay, sand, and chalk, but Kingside, roughly speaking, occupied the eastern side of the tithing and Gernon the western. (fn. 400)
Members of well known local families were among the lessees of Easterton Kingside. John Sainsbury was tenant in 1507, (fn. 401) Jane and Eleanor Burley in the 16th century, (fn. 402) John Merewether in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, (fn. 403) and James Sutton in 1791. (fn. 404)
In 1591 the duchy's demesne farm comprised 447 a. excluding the wastes and common. There were 12 freehold estates paying a total of 19d. rent, and 12 copyholds paying £5 19s. Among the freeholders were members of the Sainsbury, Kill, Dowse, and Nicholas families. Copyholds, which were for 3 lives, carried the right to common pasture for 60 sheep, 3 horses, and 3 other beasts for every yardland held. Certain mowing duties in a demesne meadow called Broad meadow could be demanded of the copyholders. (fn. 405)
As at East Lavington, the common meadow and pasture land lay in the northern part of Easterton, and was inclosed well before parliamentary inclosure regulated the arable in the later 18th century. Christian Sainsbury, widow, and Robert Sainsbury, freeholders on the manor, attempted to inclose a waste ground called Powles c. 1560. (fn. 406) In 1693 a piece of pasture had recently been taken out of a common called 'the Heath' and inclosed. (fn. 407) Garnham common, which lay on the downs, was inclosed with gates and stiles by 1705. (fn. 408) About five years later Easterton common was inclosed resulting, allegedly, in a reduction in the number of cattle kept in the tithing. (fn. 409) In 1798 1,352 a., which included all the land south of the village, were inclosed by Act of Parliament. (fn. 410) The following year it was estimated that the tithing contained 178 a. best arable 'sand' land, 175 a. arable 'clay' land, 368 a. arable 'hill' land, 134 a. meadow and pasture, and 630 a. downland. (fn. 411)
As at East Lavington, the lighter sandy land around the village was extensively used for marketgardening in the 19th century. (fn. 412) In 1817 not only were vegetables grown in inclosed gardens and allotments, but 15 a. in the former common fields were devoted to their cultivation. (fn. 413) In 1819 the acreage of vegetables there was 18 a. (fn. 414) Peas and potatoes were grown on the best land. (fn. 415) In 1820 besides supplies to local markets, vegetables were sent to Bath and Salisbury, and on one occasion at least by barge to London. (fn. 416)
In 1840 the largest farm in Easterton was that formed out of the reputed manor of Easterton Gernon and known as Manor farm. (fn. 417) It had 538 a. and as well as the farmstead in the village Easterton Hill farm about 1½ mile away on the downs belonged to it. It was farmed under Charles Hitchcock by Thomas Tuckey. The Hunt-Grubbe estate had 364 a. at the same date. Its 'upland' farmstead was Pond farm, lying some 500 ft. up on the escarpment, and its 'lowland' farm was that later known as Forest farm. The larger part of the estate was leased to James Norris. The next largest farm in Easterton in 1840 was that of 315 a. lying entirely upon the downs and owned and farmed by Joseph Tanner. It was made up of freehold lands which at the end of the 18th century had belonged to the Willoughby, Grant, and Dowse families. Fairfield farm at the same date had 90 a. and was owned and farmed by Richard Tuckey. Halstead farm with 66 a. was owned and farmed by John Grant.
The Hunt-Grubbe estate was split up by sales of 1865 and 1867. (fn. 418) At the first, Pond farm with about 210 a. was sold and at the second Forest farm with about 49 a. In 1897 the first of the sales of downland to the War Department occurred which were to transfer all the land south of the Ridge Way to the Army for use as firing ranges. (fn. 419) That year 304 a. were sold. In 1898 the acquisition of virtually all this part of the parish by the Army was completed when Pond farm and 210 a. and Easterton Hill farm and some 250 a. were purchased. Another small purchase was made in 1911 when 12 a. belonging to Halstead farm were sold. (fn. 420) All the downland farm-houses were demolished.
The light loamy soil north of the village continued to be used extensively for market-gardening until after the Second World War. (fn. 421) Much of it was then given over to mixed arable and pasture. In 1972 the farm known as Manor farm in the 19th century was a private house with little land attached to it. Forest, Sands, and Halstead farms all specialized in stock and Fairfields farm was chiefly arable. (fn. 422)
The detached part of Market Lavington known as Gore was reckoned at 3 hides in 1086. Two hides were in demesne on which there were 2 ploughs and 6 serfs. On the remaining hide there were 3 villeins and a bordar with 1 plough. There were 40 a. of pasture. The value of the estate had risen from 30s. to 50s. since the Conquest. (fn. 423)
When the manor was granted to Sir John de Moleyns in 1340 four small estates within it were surrendered to him. (fn. 424) One of 24 a. with pasture for 40 sheep was conveyed by Robert Henry. (fn. 425) Another of 21 a. with pasture for 20 sheep was conveyed by Robert with his brothers John and Thomas. (fn. 426) John Henry conveyed 12 a. and pasture for 20 sheep (fn. 427) and John Rykman of Tilshead surrendered to Sir John 11 a. with pasture for 15 sheep. (fn. 428) As one of the smaller units making up the great de Moleyns estate, Gore was linked for certain purposes with other manors within the complex. (fn. 429) It was frequently described as a member of the manor of Leigh. An ox was sent to Gore from the stock at Leigh in 1340–1 (fn. 430) and a few years later the reeve of Leigh was in debt to the reeve of Gore. (fn. 431)
Situated entirely upon the Middle and Upper Chalk of the Plain, the land of Gore, besides affording upland grazing for sheep, was good corn-growing country. In 1340–1 30 a. were sown with wheat, 19 a. with barley, 7 a. with mixed corn, 5 a. with peas, and 2 a. with vetches. (fn. 432) Possibly since the conveyances of the four small estates to the lord of the manor in 1340 there has been only one farm at Gore. As one already compact unit it was not included in the Inclosure Award for East Lavington. In 1910 most of the land east of the farmstead was acquired by the War Department. (fn. 433) It continued to be farmed, however, and in 1972 was mostly arable.
Trade and Industry. There was a tailor living in Market Lavington in 1225, (fn. 434) but insufficient evidence has been found to show how far the parish was involved in the cloth industry at any time. Two collar-makers there were accused of forcible entry in 1585 (fn. 435) and in 1588 there is mention of another tailor. (fn. 436) In the 17th century a mercer at East Lavington and a broadweaver at Easterton occur. (fn. 437)
Lying in a rich corn-growing region, Market Lavington became in the 18th century a centre for the malting industry. In 1764 on the two manors of Lavington Dauntsey and Lavington Rector there were eleven malt-houses. (fn. 438) In 1830 malting was still extensively carried on in the village. (fn. 439) The last malt-house closed c. 1883. (fn. 440) Brewing naturally accompanied the malting business. A brewery established by James Neate in 1852 in High Street was carried on by him for some sixty years. The business closed in 1920 when the brewery was pulled down, and the Brewery Tap next door in White Street, where the beer was sold, was converted into dwelling houses. (fn. 441)
Bricks were made at the 'brickell' in the northern part of the parish by 1662. Because it lay in the region inclosed by agreement that year arrangements had to be made for the future use of the yard. Bricks were to continue to be available to inhabitants at 1s. 4d. per hundred. The lane leading to the yard was to be maintained by its owners. Between Michaelmas and Lady Day carts were not to be used and bricks were to be carried away by horseback. (fn. 442) In the early 19th century a brickyard, probably the same one, was owned by the Philpot family who kept the Green Dragon. (fn. 443) By 1859 it had been bought by William Box (fn. 444) and it remained in the Box family until towards the end of the century. To power the machinery in his brick-works Box is said to have acquired the first traction engine to come into Wiltshire. He was killed in an accident with one of his engines in 1894. (fn. 445) The brick business was then bought by Holloway Bros., of Devizes, who formed the Market Lavington Brick and Tile Works Ltd., and carried on an extensive business until 1920. The works were next acquired by W. E. Chivers & Son, also of Devizes, who owned them until 1956, although some years earlier they ceased making bricks. (fn. 446)
In 1970 the site was bought by Systems and Components Ltd., formerly of Fordingbridge (Hants). The firm's products include those associated with petro-chemical and refining industries, such as samplers, analysers, and analyser systems. In 1970 over 80 per cent of its products were exported and about 25 people were employed. (fn. 447)
The excellent conditions for fruit-growing on the greensand parts of the parish led to the establishment in 1868 by Samuel Saunders, a member of the family at Russell Mill, of a small fruit preserving manufactory. (fn. 448) Saunders died in 1908 and his business closed (fn. 449) but Samuel Moore, who had worked under him, began making jam in his cottage in Easterton. For some years it remained a small family concern but in 1918 Moore began to buy modern equipment and so expand his business. He retired in 1937 and a limited company was formed under his two sons William and Wilfred. Mincemeat and lemon curd were among items added to the firm's products. William Moore died in the 1960s and the business was taken over by a firm in Egham (Surr.). In 1972 as Samuel Moore Foods Ltd. the Easterton business was expanding and about 100 people were employed. (fn. 450)
The repair and manufacture of agricultural machinery has provided a certain amount of employment in the parish. About 1835 a local farmer, Colborne Cambridge, opened a foundry in High Street to make rollers and chain harrows. There he invented a roller, later known as the Cambridge ring roller. His business flourished but because of transport difficulties he moved it c. 1842 to Bristol. (fn. 451) William Box, of the brick-works, also made agricultural implements in the earlier days of his business and others were so employed on a small scale throughout the 19th century. (fn. 452) The firm of agricultural engineers later called A. S. Wordley & Co. came to the village in 1950 and occupied a yard once used by F. H. Sayer as a park for his buses. The business changed its name c. 1967 to the Wiltshire Agricultural Engineering Co. Ltd. In 1972 it employed about 36 people and was concerned with sales and servicing. (fn. 453)
Besides those small industries there have been all the usual trades and crafts necessary to a selfsupporting rural community. In 1838 the Market Lavington tradesmen included 6 grocers, 2 butchers, and 4 drapers. Among the craftsmen were 5 bootand shoe-makers, 4 carpenters, 2 coopers, and 2 straw-hat makers. A post office was established by then in the Green Dragon. Mail was taken from there every evening to Devizes. (fn. 454) Between 1875 and the outbreak of the First World War a daily horsedrawn bus service to Devizes was run by Edwin Potter. After 1911 Potter's service was supplemented by a motor bus owned by F. H. Sayer. Sayer's business expanded and eventually he ran buses to Salisbury, Bath, Trowbridge, Chippenham, and Pewsey. His service was succeeded in the 1930s by that provided by Bath Tramways. (fn. 455)
In 1972 the ease with which people could shop outside the village had greatly reduced the number of shops in High Street. Two banks, however, had branches there, although not open every day, and with its four public houses the village still retained something of the appearance of a small market town.
Market and Fair. The right to hold a market on his manor on Wednesdays was granted to Richard Rochelle in 1254. (fn. 456) The following year, however, it was to be suppressed because it was considered detrimental to the market held on Thursdays in Devizes. (fn. 457) Nevertheless it was still being held in 1260 although it was again thought to be damaging to the Devizes market. (fn. 458) Seven years later Richard Rochelle complained that his market had depreciated £40 in value because of the existence of the abbess of Romsey's market at Steeple Ashton, likewise held on Wednesdays. (fn. 459) On the division of the Rochelle manor in the later 13th century between the daughters of Emily Longespee, the market was allotted to Emily, wife of Maurice FitzMaurice, (fn. 460) and in 1435 the charter of 1254 was confirmed to Maurice Bruyne, then tenant of the manor. (fn. 461)
An attempt to suppress the activities of badgers at the Market Lavington market was made in 1612–13. (fn. 462) Early in the 19th century it was described as a great corn market, (fn. 463) although a late 18thcentury list of Wiltshire markets omitted to mention it. (fn. 464) In 1830 it was, however, again said to be a very large market for corn and cattle. (fn. 465) In 1848 it was still held weekly and had a considerable trade in corn and malt, although that trade, it was said, had much declined. (fn. 466) It was held for the last time at a date between 1850 and 1860. (fn. 467)
In the late 1950s responsibility for resurfacing the market-place, which lies in the middle of the village, was disclaimed by the parish, the rural district, and the county council. It was suggested that Dauntsey's School as the successor to the Radnors and Awdrys, lords of the manor, might be liable. (fn. 468) The work was, however, eventually undertaken by the county council in 1960. (fn. 469)
A fair to be held on the eve, feast, and morrow of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary (15 Aug.) was granted to Richard Rochelle at the same time as the weekly market. Like the market it passed with the Rochelle manor to the rectors of Edington and after the dissolution of that house in 1539 the profits of the fair and market were valued at 8s. (fn. 470) The fair was said in 1830 to be held annually on 10 August (fn. 471) but no more is known about it.
Mills. At the time of Domesday there were two mills. (fn. 472) On the division of the manor in 1225 a mill 'before the gate of the capital messuage' was allotted to Peter de la Mare, and another was awarded to William Rochelle. (fn. 473) It is impossible to locate those two mills but the two streams flowing westward through the parish and the combined stream forming the western boundary afforded several suitable sites.
In 1272 there were three water-mills on the de la Mare manor (later Lavington Dauntsey), (fn. 474) and in 1308 a mill with a cottage there was held by a 'neif'. (fn. 475) In 1458 a mill on the same manor was described as a fulling-mill. (fn. 476) It may have been that mill then called Lugge Mill which John Hitchcock claimed had been leased to him by Sir Edward Baynton before his death in 1545, from which he was forcibly expelled by Edward Flower and Edward Blake and some 40 others armed with bows and arrows and other weapons. (fn. 477) The mill may have been included in the lease of the manor to Richard Blake (fn. 478) and have been occupied by him or some member of his family, for in 1586–7 there was a reference to Blake's Mill. (fn. 479)
When the two Lavington manors were sold in 1764 each had a mill. That belonging to Lavington Dauntsey was leased to Benjamin Merrit, alias Tyler, and that belonging to Lavington Rector was leased to Eleanor Still and Hester Slade. (fn. 480) It was probably the latter which became known as Russell Mill and by the end of the 18th century was occupied by the Saunders family. (fn. 481) The other was possibly Cornbury Mill which, although adjoining the parish boundary, is in West Lavington. Amram Edwards Saunders, who played a leading part in local affairs, was born at Russell Mill in 1779. (fn. 482) The mill was burnt down in 1800 but was almost immediately rebuilt. (fn. 483) The Saunders family left the mill in 1868. (fn. 484) By the beginning of the 20th century it was used for driving the saw bench for the PleydellBouverie estate. (fn. 485) With 18 a. of land it was sold in 1916 at one of the sales of the manor estate. (fn. 486) Since then it has been occupied as a private house.
No records survive for the medieval courts of the two Lavington manors. In the last year that Lavington Rector was held by Edington two manor courts and a court leet were held for it. (fn. 487)
The courts of the two manors were apparently combined when the lordship of both was acquired by Sir Edward Baynton in 1541, although to some extent their separate identities were retained. In 1784 the manor court of Lavington Rector was said to owe suit to that of Lavington Dauntsey (or Baynton). (fn. 488) View of frankpledge was confirmed to Sir John Dauntsey in 1617, (fn. 489) many years after he had acquired the manors. In 1800 Lord Radnor's tenants in Lavington Rector, Great and Little Cheverell, and in Littleton Pannell (in West Lavington) all owed suit to the court leet for his manor of Lavington Dauntsey. That year the court was held in the house of William Ward in the market-place of Market Lavington. (fn. 490)
A little more is known of the manor courts of Easterton. By 1544, when the records begin, the so-called manor of Easterton Gernon was represented by a tithingman at the court leet of the duchy of Lancaster's manor. (fn. 491) The courts and view of frankpledge of that manor passed in 1615 to Thomas Grubbe. (fn. 492) In 1631 the obligation of the lessee of the manor to provide hospitality for the lord or his steward when holding the courts was reaffirmed. Two tithingmen attended the courts, one said to be for Easterton Kingside (the former duchy manor), the other for Easterton Garnhamside. All profits belonged to the lords of the former duchy manor (Kingside) to whom Easterton Gernon paid 18d. as a chief rent. (fn. 493) Court papers survive for 1691–1780 and throughout that time the two sides were represented by their tithingmen. (fn. 494) Although the court had leet jurisdiction, business was chiefly concerned with agricultural matters, particularly the proper maintenance of fences and gates, but on one occasion the keeper of a disorderly alehouse was presented. (fn. 495) In 1776 the court was held in a Mrs. Bishop's malt-house. (fn. 496)
Surviving records attest to the activity of the parish officers and in the 19th century to that of the vestry. In 1603 the two overseers were accused of failing to meet once a month after Sunday morning service to discuss measures for relieving the poor. (fn. 497) Overseers' accounts exist for 1727–41 and a disbursement book for 1737–41. (fn. 498) In 1739 it was decided to close the workhouse and make a small weekly allowance to the former inmates. (fn. 499) The workhouse and its garden stood on the south side of Church Street on the corner of New Street. In 1840 it was owned with other lands by Elizabeth Ford Legge of Grove Farm. (fn. 500)
Minutes of the vestry survive from 1801 and until 1873 that body was concerned with the affairs of Easterton as well as those of East Lavington, although in matters of poor relief Easterton was independent after 1742. (fn. 501) In 1844 two churchwardens for Lavington and one for Easterton were appointed. In 1846 there were two surveyors of the highways and two parish constables. Two years later there were two overseers and a guardian of the poor. Throughout the 1840s the vestry concerned itself diligently with the insanitary state of the village. In 1848 it was proposed to make a covered drain from the market-place to Lamb corner. Later in the same year the vestry decided that with the addition of overseers it should form itself into a board of health to investigate the sanitary arrangements within the parish. It was also concerned with the ruinous condition of some parish houses which were eventually sold. (fn. 502)
In 1851 it was noticed that Easterton had fallen behind with its contributions to the church rates, but the vestry decided to 'let byegones be byegones' so long as the tithing paid its proper share in future. (fn. 503) In 1742 an agreement had been made between East Lavington and Easterton by which it was agreed that each tithing should assume responsibility for its own poor. The agreements was signed by Lord Abingdon's steward and some 60 inhabitants. (fn. 504) Thenceforth each tithing relieved its own poor and one of the two overseers elected for the parish was assigned to Easterton. In 1835 the two tithings became part of the Devizes poor-law union. East Lavington was then spending an annual average of £718 on its poor and Easterton £472. (fn. 505)
Until 1874 the tithings of East Lavington and Easterton were served by the parish church at East Lavington. Traces of Norman work are to be seen in the fabric of that church and it is believed that there may have been an even earlier one on the site. At least by 1322 there was a chapel at Gore dependent upon the parish church. Easterton became a separate ecclesiastical parish with its own church in 1874. (fn. 506) The two livings were united in 1962. (fn. 507)
The division of the manor between the de la Mares and the Rochelles early in the 13th century led to disputes about the advowson of the rectory. In 1220 Peter de la Mare established his claim to it when it was found that his grandfather had made the last presentation. (fn. 508) Thereupon Peter presented his brother whom, however, the bishop refused to institute on grounds of illiteracy. (fn. 509) The following year when William Rochelle claimed the manor from Peter de la Mare he claimed the advowson of the rectory also, (fn. 510) and in the settlement of 1225 it was allotted to him. (fn. 511)
When the Rochelle manor was divided between the daughters of Emily Longespee c. 1276 the advowson was allotted to her daughter Emily wife of Maurice FitzMaurice. (fn. 512) In 1315 Emily, who after the death of her husband resumed the name Longespee, granted it to Robert of Wanborough in fee. (fn. 513) Robert was in 1329 a benefactor of St. Katherine's chapel, Wanborough, which was founded by Emily's mother. (fn. 514) Robert seems to have considered granting the advowson to the choristers of Salisbury but did not do so. (fn. 515) Instead he presented himself to the church and as rector presented vicars in 1316, 1322, and 1323. (fn. 516) In 1326, however, Robert, who was archdeacon of Wells, temporarily resigned the rectory and John de Godeley, dean of Wells, presented to it that year. (fn. 517) By 1329 Robert again had the advowson and presented his brother John as rector. (fn. 518) In the following year Robert conveyed it to another brother Thomas, and Thomas thereupon presented to the rectory. (fn. 519) John of Wanborough renounced any claim to the advowson in 1337 and Thomas conveyed it to William Montagu, earl of Salisbury (d. 1344). (fn. 520) William presented to the rectory in 1342 and his widow Catherine (d. 1349) in 1347. (fn. 521) Their son William, earl of Salisbury (d. 1397), granted the advowson in 1354 to William of Edington, bishop of Winchester, (fn. 522) who that year conveyed it to the chantry he had founded in Edington church. Licence for the warden and chaplains of the chantry to appropriate Market Lavington church was given at the same time. (fn. 523)
William of Edington presented to the rectory in 1354, but no more rectors were presented except apparently on one occasion in 1406. (fn. 524) The rectors had evidently long been sinecurists, and a vicarage had been established by 1291. The advowson of the vicarage passed after 1358 to the rectors of the house of Bonhommes at Edington which had succeeded to the chantry there. (fn. 525) It remained with the rectors of Edington until the Dissolution. In 1546, nearly ten years after that event, the advowson was granted to the cathedral of St. Mary, Oxford (Christ Church). (fn. 526) The first presentation after that grant was made by Henry Brouncker, but in 1575 the chapter of Christ Church presented (fn. 527) and in 1971 the chapter was still patron of the living.
The vicarage was worth £6 13s. 4d. in 1291. (fn. 531) Its endowment was ordained by the bishop in 1322. (fn. 532) Besides the lesser tithes of the entire parish the vicar had the tithe of hay from the fields of Richard de Rivers (fn. 533) and his tenants, and all tithes from the rector's tenants, and from the tithing of Gore. In 1360 the endowments of the vicarage were again recited in an agreement made between the rector of Edington and the vicar. (fn. 534) Besides the lesser tithes as before the vicar was to have some of the great tithes of the duchy of Lancaster's manor in Easterton, all the great tithes from other lands in Easterton then called Croft, Easterton, and Westerton, from the rectorial glebe, unless occupied by the rector, and from the tithing of Gore. At the dissolution of Edington in 1539 the vicarage was valued at £14 11s. 3d. (fn. 535)
In 1783 the vicarial tithes were made up in much the same way. (fn. 536) In addition to the lesser tithes, the vicar still had all the great tithes from Gore farm, certain of the great tithes from the former duchy manor in Easterton, and from land in that tithing then known as Twentylands. In 1831 the net average annual income of the vicarage over the past three years was £300. (fn. 537) In 1840 the vicarial tithes in East Lavington and Easterton were commuted for rentcharges of £215 and £105 respectively. (fn. 538)
A house and some land, including a meadow, a virgate of arable, and grazing for 100 sheep, were allotted to the vicar in 1322. (fn. 539) In the later 18th century the vicar's glebe included some 3 a. of inclosed arable, 25 a. of common-field arable, and 6 a. of pasture in West Park. (fn. 540) In 1840 there were 39 a some lying towards the northern end of the parish and the rest on the downs in the south. (fn. 541) In 1783 the vicarage-house was built of brick with a stone tiled roof. (fn. 542) It lay at the eastern end of the village. It was rebuilt in 1841 and again c. 1865. (fn. 543) In 1947 it was sold and a house at the west end of the village, formerly belonging to the Ludlow Bruges family, was bought to replace it. (fn. 544) That house, one of the most distinguished in the parish, is of brick of the earlier 18th century.
In 1343 and 1344 Peter de la Mare, lord of the manor later called Lavington Baynton or Dauntsey, gave houses, rent, and about 27 a. of land to found a chantry in the church. (fn. 545) There a priest was to celebrate divine service daily. The chantry was originally dedicated to St. Mary the Virgin but later the dedication was sometimes said to be to St. Catherine and St. Margaret. (fn. 546) Chaplains, instituted by the bishop, were presented between 1349 and 1537. (fn. 547) All presentations were made by the lords of the manor of Lavington Baynton, or their widows, except that of 1411 which was by the bishop by lapse. (fn. 548) The chantry was dissolved some time after 1544 and its possessions, valued at £6 2s. 3d., passed to Isabel, widow of Sir Edward Baynton (d. 1545), lord after 1541 of the manors of Lavington Baynton and Lavington Rector. (fn. 549) Certain architectural features suggest that the chantry may have occupied the east end of the north aisle of the church. (fn. 550)
Probably few, if any, of the early rectors resided in the parish. Between 1299 and 1354, when the church was appropriated, at least eleven vicars were instituted. (fn. 551) Among later vicars were Nathaniel White who was ejected from the living in 1660, (fn. 552) Arthur Brett (?d. 1677) the reputedly crazy poet, and Thomas Tanner (?1640–1718), father of the bishop and antiquary. (fn. 553) Between 1750 and 1805 the living was held by John Dobson with that of Longbridge Deverill. Dobson lived at Longbridge Deverill and the church of Market Lavington was served by a curate, with a reputation for violence, who lived in West Lavington and served the church there too. (fn. 554)
In 1676 there were reputed to be 476 churchgoers in the parish. (fn. 555) In 1686 the church was reasonably well attended except when feast days coincided with market days. (fn. 556) There were about 40 communicants in 1783. Services at that date were held twice on Sundays and Holy Communion was celebrated at the four great festivals of the year. (fn. 557) On Census Sunday in 1851 a congregation of 300 was present at morning service and 250 in the evening. (fn. 558) In 1864 there were about 80 communicants. Holy Communion was celebrated on the first Sunday of every month as well as on the usual feast days. (fn. 559) In 1868 the vicar required the help of a curate since services were held in the school building at Easterton as well as in the parish church. (fn. 560) There was evidently some disagreement between vicar and parishioners in 1875, for the vestry passed a resolution condemning the wearing of a surplice and recommending the black gown. (fn. 561) In 1900 there was further dispute when the vicar wished to move the prayer-desk to the chancel. (fn. 562)
Provision was made for an annual sermon on St. Paul's Day (25 Jan.) in the will of Thomas Tanner proved 1735. The preacher was to receive 13s. 4d. for delivering it and small payments were to be made to the sexton, parish clerk, and the bell-ringers for their duties on that day. (fn. 563) The vicar received that fee for his sermon in 1969 and 9s. was distributed among the sexton and the bell-ringers. (fn. 564) The sermon has been preached every year since then. (fn. 565)
The church of ST. MARY is built of ashlar and sarsen rubble and has a chancel with north and south vestries and south organ chamber, an aisled and clerestoried nave with south porch, and west tower.
The evidence for a 12th-century church is in a number of carved stones of that date in the later medieval walling of the aisles and others built into the porch in the 19th century. The east and west windows of the north aisle are late-13th-century which implies that the nave had achieved its present length (46 ft. 6") at least by that time, and its present width (25 ft. 3") probably also preserves the 13thcentury proportions. Much of the rest of the nave with its porch, and the chancel and north vestry are of various dates in the 14th century. The chancel is probably the earliest, c. 1300, then the arcades of three unequal bays, and south aisle and porch, the vestry perhaps c. 1340, and finally the north wall of the north aisle. The west tower may have been set out at the same time as this partial rebuilding of the north aisle, but most of its decorative features are 15th century, the most notable being the panelled recess on the west face which encompasses both the doorway and the window. The rood-stair is 14thcentury and the arcades appear to have been set out for a rood-loft but neither screen nor loft survives. There is a 14th-century piscina in the north aisle and the altar there could have been used by the chantry founded c. 1349. There was probably also an altar in the north vestry.
The first major restoration was that of 1864 under the direction of Ewan Christian. (fn. 566) The nave roof and part of the aisle walls were rebuilt. Buttresses were added to the south aisle and those of the chancel were rebuilt, as was the tracery of its windows which appear to have been altered in design. The chancel arch is largely of the same date but it may follow the original pattern. In 1910 the organ chamber and choir vestry were added to the south of the chancel which was again restored, including the complete rebuilding of the east wall, preserving the 19th-century tracery of the window but replacing the diagonal buttresses with angle buttresses. (fn. 567) Among the monuments are many to the Sainsbury family. One to Thomas Sainsbury (d. 1795), lord mayor of London in 1786, is by John Flaxman the younger.
In 1553 the king's commissioners removed 39 oz. of silver and left the parish with 13 oz. (fn. 568) In 1783 among the church plate were a flagon presented in 1733 by Samuel Sainsbury, a chalice with paten and cover of 1728, and an alms-dish of 1741 given by John Tanner (d. 1759). (fn. 569) John was a younger brother of Thomas, the antiquary. These pieces remained in the church in 1971. (fn. 570) There were four bells and a sanctus bell in 1553. (fn. 571) By 1783 there were six bells, of which three were cast by Abraham Rudhall. (fn. 572) All six bells were recast in 1876. (fn. 573) The registers begin in 1673 and are complete. (fn. 574)
There was a chapel at Gore in 1322 when a chaplain provided by the vicar of Market Lavington was required to celebrate mass there three times a week. (fn. 575) In 1347 a priest, presented by the chapter of Salisbury, was instituted by the bishop. (fn. 576) All the tithes and other dues belonging to the chapel were allotted to the vicar of Market Lavington in 1322. (fn. 577) About 1550 the chapel was still standing but was unused. (fn. 578) Its site, behind Gore Farm, was excavated in 1877. A nave, 24 ft. by 11 ft., was found to which it was thought a chancel, 19 ft. by 12 ft., might have been added later. Fragments of a string course were thought to date from the late 13th or early 14th century and some ridge tiles believed to be of the 14th century were uncovered. (fn. 579)
In 1867 Louisa, widow of the Hon. Samuel Hay (d. 1847) and daughter of Duncombe PleydellBouverie (d. 1850), provided money to build a school at Easterton. It was to be so designed that by the addition of a chancel it could if need arose be converted into a church. From the beginning it was licensed for divine service. (fn. 580) In 1874 the ecclesiastical parish of Easterton was formed and to it, for ecclesiastical purposes, were added the tithings of Fiddington, then in West Lavington, and Eastcott, then in Urchfont. (fn. 581) The patronage of the living, which is a vicarage, belonged at first to Mrs. Hay, but before her death in 1898 she transferred it to the bishop of Salisbury (fn. 582) who was patron in 1972. At the time that the new ecclesiastical parish was formed George Bourdieu Rogers gave his house, 50 a. of land, and £1,500 to endow the benefice of Easterton. (fn. 583) The church of ST. BARNABAS, built in 1875, is a brick structure and comprises nave, chancel, and bellcote.
Quakerism had a firm foothold in Market Lavington by the 1650s. Its rise and continuing success in the parish was dependent upon the steadfastness of three or four local families, particularly the Selfes, the Gyes, and the Axfords. A meeting had been established by 1656, for that year a Bishop's Cannings man was apprehended at it and imprisoned. (fn. 584) The persecution of the Selfes began soon after. In 1660 Isaac Selfe was gaoled for withholding tithes. (fn. 585) Three years later Edward Gye and John Smith went to prison for nearly ten years for attending a meeting in Isaac Selfe's house. (fn. 586) Isaac Selfe was gaoled again in 1670 and Jane Selfe, his wife, suffered imprisonment at some time for holding meetings during the absence of her husband. (fn. 587)
Quakerism persisted throughout the later 17th and early 18th centuries supported by the same small group of families and their offshoots. (fn. 588) The 24 dissenters reported in the parish in 1676 were most probably Quakers. (fn. 589) By c. 1680 the Lavington Monthly Meeting had been formed and it continued to exist until 1775. (fn. 590) Houses were licensed in 1707 for Quaker meetings at Easterton, Urchfont, and West Lavington, all no doubt satellites of Market Lavington. (fn. 591) In 1716 a meeting-house was built in Market Lavington, and certified by John and Edward Hyd, Isaac Selfe, the younger, and William Miell. (fn. 592) By the mid 18th century Quakerism was declining all over Wiltshire. There was still a Particular meeting in Market Lavington in 1775 when the Lavington Monthly Meeting ceased and the Wiltshire Monthly Meeting was formed. (fn. 593) By 1790 there were only three Quakers in the parish. In 1798 there was one and in 1799 permission was given for the meeting-house to be sold. (fn. 594) The former meeting-house with a small graveyard in front of it stands on the north side of High Street at right angles to the road. In 1971 it was used as an artist's studio.
Congregationalism was fostered in Market Lavington by the Revd. Robert Sloper of Devizes (d. 1818). In 1808 nine people formed themselves into a church under his guidance. (fn. 595) They opened a Sunday school and a girls' school the next year. The former Quaker meeting-house was bought as their chapel and enlarged in 1809. On Census Sunday in 1851 220 attended morning service and 300 were present in the evening. (fn. 596) A new chapel was built on the opposite side of the road in 1892. For much of the 1940s the chapel was served by ministers from neighbouring churches. In 1972 it had its own minister and services were held regularly. (fn. 597)
A Strict Baptist church was formed in East Lavington in 1832. (fn. 598) It has been said that the larger part of its congregation came from outside the parish. (fn. 599) On Census Sunday in 1851 50 were present in the morning and 40 in the evening. (fn. 600) The chapel probably closed early in the 20th century but the exact date has not been found. The building in Chapel Lane was then converted into a fried-fish shop which was still in business in 1972. (fn. 601) Its adjoining graveyard could also be seen then. In 1855 there was a second Baptist church, an offshoot of the one in Chapel Lane. (fn. 602) It stood on the south side of Church Street and could still be identified in 1886. (fn. 603)
Besides the house licensed for Quaker meetings in Easterton in 1707, the house of Edward Draper there was licensed for meetings of Anabaptists in 1740. (fn. 604) In the mid 18th century David Saunders was leading a Methodist group in Eastcott (Urchfont) from which, it has been suggested, may have grown the Wesleyan Methodist church in Easterton. (fn. 605) William Draper's house, licensed for religious worship in 1846, may have been used by Easterton Methodists. (fn. 606) The Methodist chapel, near the foot of Oak Lane, was built in 1868. In 1968 the congregation averaged twelve. (fn. 607) It was still open in 1972.
There was a school for boys in Market Lavington in 1802. (fn. 608) In 1818 a few poor boys were taught there free as well as others who paid fees. (fn. 609) By 1833 there were said to be four day schools in East Lavington and one in Easterton. (fn. 610) Land adjoining the churchyard was given by the earl of Radnor and Viscount Folkestone in 1844 for a National school which was built the next year. (fn. 611) In 1859 the school had about 50 boys and 50 girls. Neither boys' nor girls' teacher was certificated and the girls' department was considered unsatisfactory. At the same date some 50 children of nonconformists were taught in private houses in the parish. A dame school in Easterton catered for about 20 children too young to attend the National school. (fn. 612)
The school benefited from the charities of Thomas Tanner (d. 1735) and Sarah Stobbert (d. c. 1865). (fn. 613) Before 1845, the date the school was opened, Tanner's bequest of £1 annually was apparently paid to the master of the Sunday school and in 1834 he was teaching three poor boys reading, writing, and arithmetic. In 1904 to ensure the regular payment of £1 a year, Bishop Tanner's Educational Foundation was formed with an endowment of £40 set apart from the charity's main investment. (fn. 614)
Besides a charity for the poor, Sarah Stobbert bequeathed £400 in reversion for the benefit of the school. The reversion took effect c. 1868 and £136 11s. 4d. was invested. In 1904 the annual interest was £3 8s. and with Tanner's bequest was used for the general expenses of the school. (fn. 615) In 1972 Stobbert's charity yielded £3.40 and Tanner's £1. (fn. 616)
In 1865 Louisa Hay, of Clyffe Hall, offered £1,000 to build either a school or a church at Easterton which then had neither. (fn. 617) As a compromise, a building which could serve as both school and church was put up and opened in 1867. The school, attended by 'a fair number of poor children' was owned by Mrs. Hay who paid the mistress's salary. (fn. 618) After the opening of St. Barnabas's church in 1875 a new school was provided and maintained for a time by a voluntary rate and a small grant from Christ Church, Oxford. (fn. 619) Support in the village was said to be hard to come by because of the indifference of the farmers, most of whom were nonconformists. (fn. 620) By 1894 assistance had come from the National Society. (fn. 621) During the Second World War both the Market Lavington and the Easterton schools became seriously overcrowded and in Market Lavington various buildings in the village had to be used for extra accommodation. (fn. 622)
In 1971 both the Market Lavington and the Easterton schools were closed and amalgamated in a new school, named the St. Barnabas Market Lavington and Easterton Primary School, built at Drove Lane on the boundary between the two parishes. (fn. 623) In 1973 it had 320 children. (fn. 624)
In 1938 plans were made for a senior school to be built at South Park, formerly part of the grounds of the Manor House at Market Lavington. (fn. 625) It was not until 1962, however, that a secondary modern school with 154 pupils was opened on the site. (fn. 626) It was designed by F. I. Bowden, the county architect and in 1973 was a comprehensive school, with 360 pupils. (fn. 627) Because Market Lavington and the immediate neighbourhood could not provide enough pupils for a fully comprehensive school, the new school was linked for the teaching of certain subjects with Dauntsey's public school. To it came children from the Cheverells, West Lavington, Urchfont, Worton, Marston, and Tilshead as well as those from Market Lavington and Easterton. (fn. 628)
A school was run by the Misses Saunders in the Parsonage House c. 1850. Sarah Anne Hoare and Mrs. Samuel Tucker had ladies' schools in 1848. In 1850 Mrs. Cannings had a seminary. A school for young ladies is mentioned in 1879 and in 1899 and 1903 Miss Chinnock ran a private boarding and day school. (fn. 629)
Charities for the Poor.
Thomas Tanner by his will proved 1735 bequeathed £200 to be invested and the interest used in a variety of charitable ways. (fn. 630) Part of the income was to be spent on an annual sermon and on teaching a few poor children to read and write. (fn. 631) His trustees were to spend 20s. every year on a friendly meeting, or feast, at which they and some of the 'better sort' among the parishioners were to promote a spirit of peace and good neighbourliness and revere the memory of Tanner's parents. Four bibles were to be distributed every year to the four most deserving persons in the parish, and finally any surplus money was to be given in doles of 1s. to the poor after the sermon.
In 1742 three pieces of land in Patney were bought with the £200. In 1834 a rent of £8 was received and spent exactly in accordance with Tanner's wishes. The surplus available for the poor was then nearly £4. In 1869 the vicar and churchwardens were appointed trustees and in 1870 the land was sold and £342 17s. 3d. invested. Out of that £40 was allotted for the educational part of the charity. In 1903 £16 17s. 2d. was spent from the non-educational fund. After payment for the sermon and hymn books, in place of bibles, just over £5 was distributed to the poor of Market Lavington and Easterton, by then a separate parish. That year £1 was spent on the friendly meeting but later that sum was often added to Sarah Stobbert's coal fund and no meeting was held. In 1972 no meeting had been held since 1966 (fn. 632) and £4.50 was given to the Stobbert coal charity. (fn. 633)
Thomas Sainsbury by his will dated 1795 bequeathed £200 to his brother William to invest for the poor of the parish. William Sainsbury died in 1806 having bequeathed a like sum for the same purpose by his will dated 1796. Some years after William's death the surviving trustee failed to pay out the annual interest and legal action was required to put the matter right. New trustees were appointed in 1819 and thereafter regular annual disbursements were made. In 1833 668 loaves were given away to about 160 heads of families and single persons.
Maria Sainsbury by her will proved c. 1846 bequeathed £200 to provide bread for the poor of Market Lavington. At the beginning of the 20th century the income from the three Sainsbury charities amounted to about £16 annually and was spent on bread and groceries for the poor of Market Lavington and Easterton. (fn. 634) In 1972 bread vouchers amounting to about £28 were given away. (fn. 635)
Sarah Stobbert by her will proved 1865 bequeathed £400 to provide coal for all poor widows and widowers on Christmas Eve. (fn. 636) She also endowed an educational charity. (fn. 637) The income from the investment for the poor was spent annually on coal, and occasionally the money, which should have been spent on Thomas Tanner's friendly meeting, was added to Sarah Stobbert's charity. In 1903 all widows and widowers in Market Lavington over 50 years old received 1½ cwt. of coal. With the aid of voluntary contributions a second distribution was made in January or February. In 1972 46 doles of 30p. each and 1 dole of 20p. were distributed in lieu of the gifts of coal. (fn. 638)
By declaration of trust dated 1883 the Revd. Arthur Pitman Gordon gave £50 for the poor of Market Lavington. (fn. 639) He requested that the charity should be known as the Revd. George Grisdale Hicks's Gift. In 1903 the investment produced £1 4s. 8d. a year which was given away in gifts of 2s. 6d. to those in need. In 1972 there was £4.95 from accumulated income in hand. (fn. 640)