Archive:Mansions of Herefordshire

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Charles John Robinson, Mansions of Hereforshire and Their Memories (London: Longmans, 1872).

p. 66


Besides the castle and chief manor, which, after having been held by the Cliffords, Giffards, and Mortimers, reverted to the Crown, and were subsequently enjoyed by the Clintons and Whitneys, * this parish includes the site of a small cell of Cluniac monks, founded by Simon Fitzwalter,

    * The Whitney family was divided into several branches and it is not easy to distinguish in all cases between them. One branch had Gorsington, the Upper Court and other property in Clifford, but Clifford Castle and lordship appears to have belonged to the Whitney's of Whitney, and are now part of the estate of Tomkyns Dew of Whitney.

p. 67

temp. Hen. I. At the Dissolution its revenues amounted £ 11s. lld., and its possessions seem to have passed into the hands of the Tracys. (Harl. MS. 6868) They were then purchased by the Wellington family in the seventeenth century, and went with the heiress of Richard Wellington to her husband, Edward Woodhouse, by whose descendant they have been lately sold to Benjamin Haigh Allen (formerly of Greenhead, co. York), their present proprietor. His residence, the Priory, is altogether modern, but its site approves the choice made by the monks seven centuries ago.

Hardwick township includes within its limits the Moor, which has been in the possession of the Penoyre family (see pedigree) for at least three centuries. The mansion has been built about fifty years, and replaced one of less beauty and smaller size. It contains a good library and portraits of Queen Elizabeth, Charles II. (a royal gift), and Gerard Dannett (see Bosbury) of unusual merit. The manor of Hardwick was conveyed, 6 Feb. Jac. I., to James Penoyre of the Moor, by William Parry of Trebarried, Rice Pritchard of Talgarth, and Isable his wife, dau. and co-heir of Richard Whitney late of Hardwicke, (Title Deeds) which Richard Whitney appears to have been a son of James Whitney of Gorsington in Clifford, whose pedigree of five generations was entered at the Visitation of 1634. Upper Court was bought by the late T. S. Penoyre of T. T. Bernard, whose wife was dau. and heir of Sir David Williams * of Rose Hall, Herts, and Clifford, Bart., a descendant of Sir Henry Williams, of Guernevet (see Whitney).

Castleton was, for many generations, the property of the Duppa family, † one member of which, Bryan Duppa, D.D., was Bishop of Winchester and tutor to Charles II. and James II. (see Pcmbridge), and another member, Sir Thomas Duppa, Knt., was Usher of the Black Rod to those Kings and to William and Mary.

Middlewood is a small property, very picturesquely situated, which has changed hands frequently and was lately the seat of Rear-Admiral the Hon. Walter B. Devereux, author of the Lives of the Devereuxes. Silas Taylor viewed the church 20th May, 1657, and remarks, "In y' church is ye tombe onely of a fryer cut exquisitely in wood under an arch on ye north side and nothing else as I could meet with. Chappies of Ease are many as one by ye Castle of Clifford, the steeple and chancell yet remaining, then ye church of ye Priory, wherein was ye buriall of ye Cliffords, but all destroyed; then there is Middlewood and not far from thence St. Oswald's Chapple, besides ye Parish Church." Except the last, all other of these vestiges of antiquity have now disappeared.

    * He died 21 Jan., 1798, and was buried at Clifford.

    † Eustance Whitney of Gorsington in Clifford, Esq., by his will nuncupative (dat. 28th April, 1599 and proved at Hereford) left most of his property to his son James and a portion also to his daughter Blanch and her husband Robert Duppa. The latter died in 1600 and (by will dat. 29th July, 1600, proved at C.P.C., 11th June, 1601) devised his lands in Dorston to his son John, and those in Clifford to his son James, with legacies to his seven daughters. The overseers of this will were James Whitney, his brother-in-law, his cousin James Penoyre, &c., and the executors his "loving and worshipful friend Eustance Whitney, Esq.," and " his loving kinsman, Jeffrey Duppa, gent." Jeffrey, it should be noticed, was the name of the Bishop's father.

p. 216

Norton Canon.

"CLAVERHILL or Cothreall, anciently belonging to a familiy of that ilk,* was, for three hundred years of more, in possession of a branch of the Whitneys of Whitney.† the last of whom, John Whitney of Templemore, co. Tipperary, sold it, in 1865, to John Tunstall Pearce, who now holds it.


    * In the Charters of the Dean and Chapter (fourteenth century) the names of Richard de Calurehulle, Simon, son of Thomas de Calurehulle, John, son of Alured de Calurehulle, and others occur. A portion of the estate was purchased by the Rev. James Bernard of Abbey Dore, (d. 1676) whose descendant, Thomas Bernard, d. 1800, leaving an only dau., m. 1. to Vaston, and 2. to Coleman of Leominster. Edward Bernard Coleman, grandson of the latter, sold the property lately to Thomas Galliers of Norton Canon.

    † Margaret Whytneye, by her will, dat. 20 Oct., 1568, desires to be buried in her parish church of Norton, next her husband, James Whitneye, Esq. She mentions her son Thomas, her daughters, Anne, wife of Hugh Bull, Eliz. Phillips, and Elizabeth Browning. A Walter Whytney of Norton, occurs as a juror, in 1610, and we meet with others of the name during the next century, but none holding any position of prominence."

p. 230


"THE lordship of the manor belonged, at the Domesday Survey, to Agnes, widow of Turstin of Flanders, and to her son, Sir Eustace, who was called de Whitney from his possessions in the parish of that name (see Whitney). It continued in the enjoyment of the Whitney family until the beginning of the eighteenth century, when it was sold, together with the advowson of the church, to Sir Thomas Coningsby, and has since formed part of the Hampton Court estate. The manor was held of the honour of Ewyas by military service, and the lords claimed by usage a pair of gilt spurs as an heriot from every mayor of Hereford dying in office."

p. 301


"GAVE its name, at a very early period, to a family which, like the Lingens, traced its descent from Turstin the Fleming.* The possessions of the Whitneys on the Welsh borders must have been of comparatively small value, for in the Domesday Survey the place is twice mentioned† with the addtion of the work 'waste,' and on this account; perhaps, they made


    * Eustace de Whitney, who had a grant of free warren in Whitney, anno 1283, descended from Eustace de Whitney who was son of Agnes, relict of Turstin.

    † The two entries are as follows:-- 'Rex tenet Witenie, Aluuard tenuit tempore Regis Edwardi et poterat ire quo volebat. Ibi dimid hida geld. Wasta fuit et est." "Ipsa ecclesia, (Sci Guthlaci) tenet Witenie, et Herald de ca. Ibi iiij hidae geld. Waste sunt et fuerunt tamen redd--vj sol.'"

p. 302

"Pencomb (which see) their principal residence and only occupied the Castle at Whitney as Lords Marchers or for purposes of chase. Of what extent the Border fortress may have been we have no means of judging, and we can only conjecture from Blount's remark -- "at Whitney the Tower of a Castle lately standing," -- that it had fallen into complete ruin before the Civil Wars. Whether its fragments were then employed in the construction of the COURT, or whether they were submerged when the river changed its course in 1730, there is no evidence to show. We gather, however, from the Parish Registers that the Whitneys occupied some mansion in the parish in the sixteenth century, and this, after the sale of Pencomb by Sir Robert Whitney, the royalist, became their chief residence.* Sir Robert's services to his King seem to have been recognised only by the nomination of his son, Thomas, to be a Knight of the Royal Oak -- (his contribution being fixed at £2000) -- and at the death of the latter the estates became divided between his widow and his sisters. Thomas Rodd, who married Anne Whitney, had the Court estate, which eventually devolved to his grand-daughter, Anna Sophia, the wife of William Wardour of Lincoln's Inn. At her death, in 1737, it became the property of her eldest son, Wililam Wardour, sometime M.P. for Fowey, and he daying s.p.; in 1746, passed to his brother, Col. Tomkyns Wardour, who devised it (subject to his wife's life interest) to his godson, Tomkyns Dew of Linc. Inn., whose grandson is the present proprietor. The Court is a building of no particular style or era, and lies close to the river side. It was probably erected by William Wardour, junr., who re-built the church, which, together with the Rectory House, had been washed away by the flood of 1730.


    * They possessed also Icomb Place, co. Glouc.--a fifteenth century mansion of much interest and beauty. It devolved to the Whitneys through the marriage of James Whitney with Blanch, one of the co-heirs of Simon Milbourne (see p. 54), who inherited it from his father-in-law, Ralph Baskerville, and he from the Blakets. Sir John Blaket, who probably re- built Icomb Place, d. in 1431. Icomb descended to the last male heir of the Whitneys, vix., Thos. Whitney of Whitney, who mar. Eliz., d. of William Cope of Icomb, and the Lady Elizabeth Fane. He died s.p., leaving Icomb to his widow, who re-married Serjeant Geers. Their dau. Elizabeth mar., first, Will. Gregory of How Caple, and secondly, R. Hopton of Canon Frome, and although the Gregorys parted with their moiety in the next generation, the remainder was held by the Hoptons until the present year, when it was sold by John Hopton of Canon Frome (See Hist. of Icomb, by Rev. D. Royce, M.A., contributed to the Worcester Architectural Soc's. volume, 1876.)"

Copyright © 2006 Robert L. Ward and the Whitney Research Group

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