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Victoria County History of North Mymms 1908

Screen grab of the cover of The Victoria History Of The County Of Hertfordshire Vol 2

North Mimms, "a parish of hamlets rather than one compact village", that's the Victorian view of a Hertfordshire parish of almost 5,000 acres. How times have changed with the growth of both Brookmans Park and Welham Green over the following 100 years.

The following information is taken from pages 251 to 261 'Parishes: North Mimms' in the Dacorum Hundred section of A History of the County of Hertford: Volume 2, edited by William Page (London, 1908).  The work traces the history of North Mymms back to the Domesday Book.

Victoria County History (VCH) was founded in 1899 and originally dedicated to Queen Victoria. It's an encyclopaedic record of England's places and people from earliest times to the present day. It has been described as the greatest publishing project in English local history.

The entire book, A History of the County of Hertford: Volume 2 is embedded at the foot of this piece. The work has no known copyright. You can view it full screen and download it. To go directly to it, click here.

In this extract from the BHO we have obtained permission to reproduce the first two sections from North Mimms to Manors. The other sections of the work can be accessed via the links below, which are to the BHO site as per the terms of the agreement to allow us to reproduce part of the work.


    Mimmine (xi cent.).

    The parish of North Mimms comprises 4,966 acres, and extends four and a half miles from east to west. It is traversed from north to south by the Old North Road, the main line of the Great Northern Railway, and the St. Albans road.

    The surface of the parish is almost flat, but rises gradually to a height of 400 ft. in the east. A small stream rises in Brookman's Park, flows west, wends its way north to the middle of the parish, then strikes north-east, and eventually joins the Colne. In one part of its bed there are some deep circular rifts in the chalk, locally called Swallow Holes, down which the water rushes in whirlpools when the stream is high.

    The parish is well wooded and includes three large parks, that of North Mimms Park in the west, Potterells in the centre, and Brookman's in the east.

    The surface soil is very varied; chalk, gravel, and clay occur at intervals. Pasture covers 2,623 acres, cornland 1,231 acres, and woodland 648 acres. (fn. 1) There are several large sheets of water which cover some 26 acres. The parish was inclosed in 1777–8 and 1782. (fn. 2)

    It may be said of North Mimms that it consists of many hamlets rather than of one compact village.

    Entering the parish from Hatfield by the North Road and going south, the hamlet of Bell Bar lies along a road striking off to the right. It is a small hamlet having its own post office and mission-room. There are two farms and some old red-tiled houses, but none of importance.

    Further on, the North Road leads through Little Heath, now a separate ecclesiastical parish possessing a church, but until 1894 only a hamlet of North Mimms, and served by a mission-room. Little Heath is growing, and has now a population of some 700 people. In the north-east, near the road to Northaw, is Mymwood House, the residence of Mr. Archibald Thompson, J.P.

    The Great Northern Railway, which runs nearly through the centre of the parish of North Mimms, passes through the hamlet of Marshmoor in the north and skirts Welham Green a little further south. Marshmoor is merely a few small houses and one larger house called Frowick House, inhabited by three brothers named Lermitte.

    Welham Green extends from the railway towards the middle of the parish along a road which meets the road to Colney Heath in the west. It is a hamlet of considerable size, with a few old cottages, a good many new slated ones, a new boys' school, and a large house on the Potterells estate, the residence of Mr. George Curtis.

    In the north-west of the parish, roads from St. Albans and Hatfield meet, and the former continues south-east to Chipping Barnet by way of Cecil Road in the parish of South Mimms, and then joins the high road from St. Albans to Chipping Barnet. Before the St. Albans and Hatfield roads meet they are connected by a third road, and the triangle so formed incloses the hamlet called Roestock.

    There is a seventeenth-century farm-house called Estate Farm belonging to North Mimms Park, and a good many small houses and one good red-brick house now called Roestock Hall, but till lately known as the Grange. This is the residence of Admiral Sir John Fellowes, K.C.B. There is a mission-room here. A small part of the common called Colney Heath extends into this parish, and near to it is a mill now worked by steam, but formerly a windmill.

    Leaving Roestock southwards the road leads along the edge of North Mimms Park and through the hamlet of Water End, near the little brook. This hamlet consists of an irregular row of small houses with their gardens, and some old half-timber houses called Mother Chuck's Cottages. The old village pound has been cleared away within the last few years.

    A little to the south of Water End is Abdale House, a building of white stucco belonging to North Mimms Park estate, occupied by Mr. C. H. Ommanney, C.M.G.; and not far away is Hawkshead House, the property of Mrs. A. C. Clauson, the wife of Mr. A. C. Clauson, barrister-at-law. Moffats, the residence of Mr. Wilson Fox, C.B., is north-east of Hawkshead House.

    None of these highways lead to the parish church, but its spire may be frequently seen, and an avenue of lime trees leads from Tollgate Road up to it and the vicarage and two or three small houses. The only other house near is North Mimms Park, but the church serves several hamlets.

    Place-names which occur in early deeds are Foxcroft, Walter's Grove, Merlyng, Bukmermedewe, Bushcroftfield, the Florysh Hach, Strytley, Worsdell, Rothstoke or Holstoke Farm, Gybbysworth, Roundcroft, Pepperland, Rougelond, Rochebrache, Danefeld, Eldley, Aberdenecroft, Christmas Pond, Ravenshethgat, and Friday Grove.

    There is a moat at Puttock's Farm, near Welham Green. A pond on the left hand of the farm entrance probably originally formed part of this moat, which included nearly an acre of ground. In a field not far from this and north of Pancake Hall (fn. 3) there is a small irregular moat of three sides, one of which is much widened out. This moat may have included the large pond on the opposite side of the road called Dixon's Hill. Its overflow is into a branch of the Colne.

    The 'Folly Gates' near Potters Bar are said to have been erected by Sir Jeremy Sambrooke, and there is a tradition that a farthing was placed under each brick. Another story is that they were erected to commemorate a visit of Henry VIII, possibly during the time when Sir Thomas More lived at More Hall. (fn. 4)

    Swanley Bar is thought to be a corruption of Swanlond Bar, taking its name from the family of Swanlond. It is probable that at Swanley Bar the lords of the manor took toll from all who passed through, as the lords of Hatfield did at Bell Bar.

    Henry Peacham, the author of The Compleat Gentleman, was born at North Mimms about 1576. He was a very talented man, being well versed in science and mathematics, as well as in drawing, painting and music.


    A manor of NORTH MIMMS was held before the Conquest by three thegns, Queen Edith's men, who were able to sell it. In the Domesday Survey Mimms is entered among the possessions of the see of Chester, but it is stated to be the personal inheritance of Bishop Robert de Limesei from his father Rayner. (fn. 5) The manor next appears as one knight's fee held of the honour of Gloucester, to which it probably belonged as early as the twelfth century. But in 1303 it is returned as held of the earls of Gloucester and Hereford jointly, (fn. 6) and it sometimes occurs as held of the honour of Mandeville. (fn. 7) Possibly, therefore, lands in North Mimms were included in the possessions of the lords of Mandeville, which extended over the adjoining parishes of Shenley and South Mimms in Middlesex, at the time of the survey.

    Image of the Somery coat of arms. Quarterly or and azure a bend gules. Image courtesy of the BHO
    Quarterly or and azure a bend gules
    Image courtesy of the BHO

    The holding of Bishop Robert was probably included in the fee held of the honour of Gloucester in 1212 by Miles de Somery, (fn. 8) who was succeeded in 1229 by his son Roger, (fn. 9) on whose death without issue in 1235–6 the manor passed to his brother Stephen. (fn. 10) In 1239 Stephen died childless, (fn. 11) and his possessions were inherited by his sisters, Maud widow of Sir Robert de Bachesworth, wife of Traher or Trakel son of Hoel, Amabilia wife of Sir Ernald de Mounteny, and Ela wife of Sir Robert de Selton or Shelton, and by Peter, a minor, the son of Peter Picot or Pygot, and Muriel, a fourth sister of Stephen. (fn. 12) Maud acquired the capital messuage of Mimms, two knights' fees held by Ralph de Chenduit and Ralph de Swineshead, and three-quarters of a fee in the tenure of Bijanus, Bayton, and Fannel. This Ralph de Swineshead was probably the father of Walter de Swineshead, knt., who in or about the year 1263 held lands, gardens, and a brew-house in North Mimms. (fn. 13) The reversion of the messuage of Hammedon after the death of Radina wife of Roger de Somery, and three knights' fees held by Robert de Somery and Richard de Eppelgar, fell to Amabilia de Mounteny. A capital messuage near the gate of Maud's lands was allotted to Peter Picot, while Ela became possessed of the reversion of the capital messuage of Haselingfield, then in the tenancy of Joan wife of Stephen de Somery, and of three knights' fees held by Peter Eardun. (fn. 14)

    Maud was succeeded by her son, Roger de Bachesworth, who settled his manor on his stepfather Trakel for life; (fn. 15) and Ela by her son John by a second husband, Hubert de Monchesny, (fn. 16) who in 1278 enfeoffed his brother Ralph of his share of the manor. (fn. 17) According to a presentment made before the hundred court in 1274–5 North Mimms had withdrawn its suit at the sheriff's turn for ten years. (fn. 18) In 1277–8 Peter Picot, Roger de Bachesworth, Ernulph de Mounteny, (fn. 19) and Ralph de Monchesny successfully claimed view of frankpledge, amendment of the assize of bread and ale, gallows, waifs, and free warren in the vill of North Mimms, and quittance of the sheriff's turn by the payment of half a mark. (fn. 20)

    Roger about 1294 granted his share of the manor to his brother, Richard de Bachesworth, (fn. 21) who in 1299–1300 granted all his possessions in North Mimms to Ralph de Monchesny and Albreda his wife for their life; or to them and their heirs for eight years if they should die within such period. In return Ralph and Albreda gave £60 to Richard, and undertook to provide an esquire armed and mounted, who should be at Carlisle on the day of the Nativity of John the Baptist, to fight for forty days against the Scots, and thus to discharge a moiety of the service for which Richard was bound to the abbot of St. Albans, and through him to the king, and for which Ralph would indemnify Richard. (fn. 22) It is likely that Richard set off to fight the Scots. All his rights in North Mimms were released to him by Sir John son and heir of Ralph de Monchesny in 1322, (fn. 23) a formality probably necessary to complete the conveyance of Richard's manor in North Mimms to Simon Swanlond, citizen and merchant of London, in 1316–17. (fn. 24) A grant to the same person by John de Monchesny of his fourth part of the manor, with the retention for himself of a life interest, was completed apparently in 1317–18. (fn. 25)

    Image of the Monchesny coat of arms. Or three scutcheons barry vair and gules.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    MonchesnyOr three scutcheons barry vair and gules
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Image of Mounteny coat of arms. Azure a bend between six martlets or. Image courtesy of the BHO
    Azure a bend between six martlets or
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    The share of Ernulph de Mounteney was probably acquired by Simon Swanlond at much the same time. It was certainly held by him in 1347, (fn. 26) and he thus was possessed of three parts of the capital manor of North Mimms. He received grants of free warren in North Mimms in 1316 (fn. 27) and in 1327, (fn. 28) and in 1332 he settled the manor on his children John, William, Simon, Thomas, Maud, and Katherine, in tail male. (fn. 29) The members of this family appear to have been absentee landlords. In 1332–3 the manor, with the reservation of a rent and certain pastures, was granted in farm by Simon to William of Pichicote, chaplain, for the term of his life, in return for £200. (fn. 30) Later it was similarly bestowed for nine years for a yearly rent of 30s. on William de Kesteven, who held the fourth part of the manor. This lease was confirmed by John son of Simon Swanlond in 1355. (fn. 31) In 1367 William son of Simon Swanlond, presumably John's brother and heir, leased the manor for ten years, with all rights except those which were attached to a tenement called Someries, to John Mountviron and Beatrix his wife, for a yearly rent of £33 6s. 8d. (fn. 32) Such lease was apparently renewed, for John and Beatrix held a court of the manor in 1378–9, (fn. 33) and in 1409 William son of the William Swanlond who held in 1367 made a grant to Richard Whittington, merchant and citizen of London, and others of the rent of £40 due to him from Beatrix Mountviron for the term of her life and for one year after her death. (fn. 34) This William Swanlond with Dionisia his wife sold his three parts of the manor in 1428 to Thomas Knolles, grocer, (fn. 35) who 'purchased it with a part of his goods duly gotten by merchandise. . . . He was a merchant in the city of London, and by his wisdom and governance was an alderman of the same city, and he was twice chosen mayor, in which time he did many notable things which do great easement to many people; and moreover with the part of his goods did marry his children to such men as were at that time much taken heed by.' (fn. 36)

    The fourth part of the manor passed from Peter Picot to his son John in 1285–6, (fn. 37) and from him to another Peter Picot, (fn. 38) probably identical with Peter son of Ralph of North Mimms, who with Joan his wife conveyed a manor of North Mimms to John of Hertford in 1291. (fn. 39) It is probable that the surname of this John was Hedersete, and that he had for his wife Margery, who afterwards married Roger heir and relative of Roger Cosyn of Norfolk, (fn. 40) who appears to have conveyed a life interest in the manor to Walter de Castello and Sarah his wife. After Walter's death Sarah continued to hold the manor, and afterwards married Gerard de Oudenard. Roger Cosyn confirmed the manor to her and her second husband, (fn. 41) and this grant was confirmed in 1321 by William Hedersete, son of Margery Cosyn, to whom the manor was to revert on the death of Gerard and Sarah. (fn. 42) In 1310–11 Sarah conveyed her right to Swyneshedlond, in North Mimms, Shopwelle, and la Roche, to Ralph de Bokenham, rector of Ellingham. (fn. 43) It is probable that this land included all or part of the possessions of the family of Swineshead, a member of which was a tenant of the manor in 1239. In 1315 Swyneshedlond was held by Peter de Bokenham of Norfolk, and sold by him to Simon de Swanlond. (fn. 44) In the same year Margery Cosyn, now a widow, by a release of her right, rendered Simon's ownership complete in a grant which was witnessed by her sons William and Simon Hedersete. (fn. 45) The reversion of the main part of her share of the manor remained, however, in her tenure. It was mortgaged by her in 1317 to John Vance, clerk, once citizen of London, and son and heir of John Vance of Lucca. (fn. 46) It passed from her to her son William Hedersete, citizen of London, who held this part of the manor in 1337. (fn. 47) He was a collector of the great custom of the king in London, and because of arrears in his account certain of his lands in North Mimms escheated to the crown, and were granted to William de Kesteven, clerk. (fn. 48) Hedersete's heirs were his daughters, Cicely the wife of Alan Ruddock, and Katherine, and they in 1339 conveyed the remainder of his possessions in North Mimms to William de Kesteven. (fn. 49) The new owner became involved in a quarrel with Simon Swanlond as to respective rights in the common of Rotemere, which pertained to the manor of North Mimms, and in 1347–8 it was provided that such portion thereof as belonged to the fourth part of the manor should be defined and inclosed. (fn. 50) In 1388 William de Kesteven sold his share of the manor to the farmer of its other three parts, Beatrix Mountviron. (fn. 51) Beatrix had in 1391 become the widow of William Bakton, and as such she sold her fourth part of the manor to Thomas Knolles and Joan his wife for a hundred marks of silver. (fn. 52)

    This Thomas Knolles, lord of all the manor of North Mimms, died in 1435–6, and left as his heir a son Thomas, (fn. 53) who, like his father, is called citizen and grocer of London. (fn. 54) He devised the manor to his son Robert, who came into possession in 1446, and in that year settled it on himself and his heirs, with remainder to his brother Richard, in tail male. (fn. 55) In 1457 Robert did homage to Richard duke of York for the manor which he held of the honour of Clare by military service, (fn. 56) and in 1478 he paid 6s. 8d. which he owed for suit at the court of the same honour. (fn. 57) In 1483 he discharged to the feodary of Essex and Hertfordshire the suit due from North Mimms to the honour of Stamlorne, (fn. 58) and in 1484 he paid 3s. 4d. to the feodary of the duchy of Lancaster in Essex and Hertfordshire, as suit of court to the honour of Mandeville. (fn. 59) Further, in 1484 he paid 4s. 4d. due to the sheriff of Hertfordshire, to the gardener of the 'king's grenewey,' (fn. 60) and in 1447, as the holder of one knight's fee in North Mimms, he contributed 2s. to the aid for the marriage of Princess Anne, the king's eldest daughter. (fn. 61)

    Image of Knolles coat of arms. Gules a cheveron argent with three roses gules thereon.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    KnollesGules a cheveron argent with three roses gules thereon
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Image of Osborne coat of arms. Quarterly ermine and azure a cross or. Image courtesy of the BHO
    OsborneQuarterly ermine and azure a cross or
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Up to this date the manor appears to have been thickly wooded, (fn. 62), but Robert is responsible for the cutting down of much timber. (fn. 63) A moiety of his property was inherited by each of his two daughters, Anne who married Henry Frowick, and Elizabeth the wife of James Stracheley. (fn. 64) Henry and Anne Frowick held their share in 1495, (fn. 65) and in 1507 sued John More and Joan his wife for rent at their court of North Mimms. (fn. 66) They had a son Thomas who died without issue, and two daughters, Isabel who married Thomas Bedlowe and Elizabeth the wife of John Coningsby. (fn. 67) Anne's share of the manor came to John Coningsby and Elizabeth, (fn. 68) and in 1529–30 James Stracheley and Elizabeth conveyed their half of the manor to John Coningsby, (fn. 69) who thus became possessed of the whole manor. Elizabeth Coningsby survived her husband and afterwards married William Dodds, (fn. 70) and the manor was settled upon them for their lives in 1557 by Henry (later Sir Henry) Coningsby, son of John Coningsby and Elizabeth, with reversion to Henry. (fn. 71) Sir Henry died seised of the manor in 1590, and at this time it was held as of the honours of Clare and Mandeville for fealty and two suits at the court of the honour. (fn. 72) It passed to his son Sir Ralph Coningsby, who died in 1615, having settled the manor on Francis his eldest son. (fn. 73) Francis died without issue in 1628, and the manor came to his brother Thomas, (fn. 74) who was a loyal adherent to the cause of Charles I. He forfeited all his lands under the Commonwealth, but North Mimms was restored to his widow Martha and his sons Harry and Thomas in 1652. (fn. 75) Martha and Harry sold it in 1658 to Sir Thomas Hyde of Aldbury. (fn. 76) Bridget the only daughter and heir of Sir Thomas married Peregrine Osborne, Viscount Dunblane, afterwards duke of Leeds, and on the death of her father in 1665 (fn. 77) she and her husband succeeded to the manor of North Mimms. (fn. 78) Peregrine died in 1729, and his second but eldest surviving son Peregrine Hyde in 1731. Bridget died in 1733, and her grandson Thomas, duke of Leeds, son of Peregrine Hyde, succeeded her. (fn. 79) He married Mary Godolphin, and on his death in 1789 left as heir his youngest son Francis Godolphin, (fn. 80) who died in 1799, and whose son and heir George William Frederick (fn. 81) and Charlotte his wife sold the manor in 1800 to Henry Browne. (fn. 82) In 1823 Henry Browne and his wife Caroline Susannah sold it to William Heygate, (fn. 83) who after holding it for about a year sold it to the trustees of Fulke Southwell Greville-Nugent, afterwards Lord Greville, then a minor. (fn. 84) He sold the manor and park of North Mimms in 1870 to Coningsby Charles Sibthorp, (fn. 85) eldest son of Gervaise Tottenham Waldo-Sibthorp, a descendant of Thomas and Martha Coningsby through their daughter Elizabeth. (fn. 86) From Coningsby Charles Sibthorp, who had already become possessed of Potterells, the other estate of the Coningsby family in this parish, this manor passed by sale about 1888 to Mr. Hamilton Bruce, who sold it in 1893 to Mr. Walter H. Burns. His widow, Mrs. Burns, now holds it (fn. 87) and resides in North Mimms Park, the present manor house, which was considerably altered about a hundred years ago, and to which Mr. Walter H. Burns made extensive additions. (fn. 88)

    Image of Sibthorp coat of arms Argent two bars gules and a border sable. Image courtesy of the BHO
    Argent two bars gules and a border sable
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    The house is of red brick with diaper patterns of a different colour and stone dressings. Though a good deal repaired the general appearance has been little altered since its first building. The exact date of this is not known, but it must be somewhere in the neighbourhood of 1600. Sir Ralph Coningsby was its builder, and the arms of Coningsby are over the west doorway. The house has a central block containing the hall and main entrance, and gabled side wings projecting to form a court which is open towards the north. The principal doorway is set in a projecting block with two ranges of large mullioned and transomed windows, finished with two gabled roofs. In the middle of each side of the court is a square turret, with a leaded cupola, and the chimneystacks are everywhere of excellent detail, with tall cut brick shafts and moulded cornices. Throughout the building the windows are stone-mullioned, and though the detail is plain the whole effect is very good, and the house is one of the most attractive and interesting domestic buildings in the county. Its internal arrangements, as might be expected, have been a good deal modernized, but there is a fair amount of carved ornament, the best of which is a chimney-piece with figures of Pyramus and Thisbe, dated 1563.

    The old manor house, which was probably destroyed when the present building was erected, appears to have stood a little more to the north-east, and nearer the church. It was in the old mansion that Princess Elizabeth stayed on her way to London from Ashridge, when summoned to answer for her supposed complicity in Wyatt's rebellion in 1553–4. (fn. 89)

    There appears to have been a considerable number of tithings in the manor of North Mimms. (fn. 90) A view of frankpledge took place annually on the feast of St. Gregory, and a court leet was held every three weeks, of which the average yearly profits amounted in 1428–9 to £10. At this date all the liberties claimed in 1277–8 existed. In the lease to John and Beatrix Mountviron it was provided that they should choose a reeve from the villein tenants every year. (fn. 91) In 1428–9 the fourfold division of the manor into Bacheworthes, Pigots, Mounteneyes, and Monchesnyes survived. The lord had gallows at Wamborenghill, a tumbril and a pillory which stood between Pigots and Bacheworthes. At Colney Heath, Mymwode, and Northawwood he had commons. In 1403 there was a mill on the manor of William Swanlond, (fn. 92) and in 1428–9 a horse mill existed on Mounteneyes. (fn. 93) A mill at North Mimms is mentioned in 1658 and in 1666, (fn. 94) and there is now a disused mill at Colney Heath. There were 'ponds, ditches, and fisheries' in the manor of Hubert de Monchesny, (fn. 95) and his son John demised to his brother rights in the manorial waters. (fn. 96) Simon Swanlond reserved to himself the path which led to the fishery, and 'wheels and other engines which appertained to Roughdell,' when he made a lease of the field called Longeforleng. (fn. 97) Fisheries were held by William Swanlond, and Thomas Knolles had a fishery which lay in the Ponde Garden. (fn. 98) In 1469–70 it was decided at the court of the manor that the lord should make a bridge at 'Westburnbrigge' on the king's highway, and repair 'Delbrigge.' (fn. 99)

    At 'Nevellyfeld' the priest of the chantry of Hatfield had his chamber, for which he paid suit to the court of North Mimms. (fn. 100) In 1367–8 the king's highway led from the church of North Mimms to London. (fn. 101)

    In 1428–9 there was a house with gardens at Bacheworthes which may have occupied the site of that which Maud de Bachesworth inherited, or have been identical with it. The capital messuage of Pigots was then the guest house of the lord of the manor, and two dovecots were annexed to it. Another capital messuage was called Swineshead. (fn. 102)

    POTTERELLS (Potterells Grove) was held at an early date of the manor of North Mimms by John Firth. (fn. 103) The land which bore this name was acquired by the family of Lord Scales. In 1417–18 William Swanlond granted to Thomas Knolles a rent due to him from Matilda, Lady Scales, for a tenement in North Mimms, (fn. 104) and in the court of the manor held in 1454–5 it was presented that Sir John Fortescue had acquired from Thomas, Lord Scales, a tenement called Potterells. (fn. 105) When Robert Knolles was lord of the manor, Lord Scales claimed the overlordship of 'a place called Potterell Roynge.' In reply Robert declared that the manor of Potterells had been held of the manor of North Mimms by the yearly rent of 14s., and by suit of court, the customs of wardship, marriage, and release, at and since the time of his grandfather's purchase, and that it had been acquired by John Fortescue. (fn. 106) Potterells continued to follow the descent of Brookmans, and in 1621 it is described as a manor appurtenant to Brookmans. (fn. 107) In 1632 it was sold by Thomas son of Robert Faldo to Thomas and Martha Coningsby, (fn. 108) and thus was united to the capital manor, becoming the head quarters of the Coningsby family at North Mimms. From Martha Coningsby it descended to her second son Ralph, (fn. 109) who died in 1703 without issue, (fn. 110) and left Potterells to Roger son of his brother Thomas. (fn. 111) Roger married Mary Fish and died in 1707, leaving Roger, his third and eldest surviving son, his heir. (fn. 112) Roger Coningsby died in 1753 without issue (fn. 113) and left Potterells to his cousins Charles De Laet and Catherine Dell jointly, with remainder to Charles De Laet. (fn. 114) Catherine died in 1769, and Charles became sole possessor of the estate, which on his death in 1792 he devised to Justinian Casamajor, (fn. 115) with remainder in tail male to his six sons (omitting Justinian the eldest son), who were godsons of Charles De Laet, and to another godson Gervaise Tottenham Waldo-Sibthorp. (fn. 116) Justinian Casamajor died in 1820, and all his sons died without issue. (fn. 117) Charles De Laet Waldo-Sibthorp, father of Gervaise Tottenham mentioned above, seems to have been possessed of Potterells. (fn. 118) He died in 1855 and was succeeded by his son Gervaise Tottenham, on whose death in 1861 the property came to his eldest son, Coningsby Charles Waldo-Sibthorp. (fn. 119) The Potterells estate was sold by Mr. Sibthorp to Mr. T. Hamilton Bruce, and in 1893 Mr. Hamilton Bruce sold the house and the fields surrounding it to Mr. William Cotton Curtis, then residing at Potterells. Mr. Curtis died in 1905 and the property passed to his son, Mr. George Curtis, who lives there now with his sisters. The house is of red brick with slated roof and straight front and a high stone porch.

    The manor of BROOKMANS (Bruckmans or Mymmeshall) was held as of the honour of Clare in socage. (fn. 120) In 1388 Nicholas de Mymmes sued Walter atte More of London and Katherine his wife for the manor of North Mimms called Mymmeshall. Nicholas claimed the manor by descent from his grandfather John de Mymmes who was living in the reign of Edward II. (fn. 121) It was held in 1400 by John Brookman, from whose family it probably took its name, (fn. 122) and whose widow Elizabeth, afterwards wife of John Chamberlain, evidently settled the manor on her second husband for her lifetime in 1437–8. (fn. 123) Thomas Betley, one of the trustees to whom the manor had been given by John Brookman, had already enfeoffed Richard Swaynesey of the manor, and litigation arose between Richard Swaynesey and John Chamberlain. A memorandum at the end of the suit states that John Twyer and Peter Aumener constituted themselves sureties for John Chamberlain and Elizabeth, and undertook to pay the expenses of Thomas Betley and Richard Swaynesey if the case was decided in their favour. (fn. 124) In 1455–6 John Twyer sold the manor to John Fortescue, (fn. 125) who died seised of half the manor of North Mimms in 1500–1, and was succeeded by his son John. (fn. 126) He died in 1517, and the manor passed to his son Henry, (fn. 127) who died seised of it in 1576, having settled it upon his son Dudley, (fn. 128) who died in 1604. His son and heir Daniel (fn. 129) sold it in 1617 to Robert Faldo of Gray's Inn, (fn. 130) who died seised of it in 1621, leaving his son Thomas his heir. (fn. 131) In 1638 William, Thomas, and Henry Faldo conveyed a messuage and land in North Mimms, Bell Barres, and elsewhere to Paul Pinder, (fn. 132) who died seised of Brookmans in 1643, leaving Paul his son and heir. (fn. 133) He died without issue, and the manor came to his sister Mary wife of Sir William Dudley. (fn. 134) William and Mary sold it in 1666 to Andrew Fountain, (fn. 135) who is supposed to have pulled down the old mansion and erected a new one, as the date 1680 was upon the spouting of that house, which in its turn was destroyed by fire about 1892, (fn. 136) and has never been rebuilt. Andrew sold the manor in 1702 to George Liddell and Charles Sanderson. (fn. 137) It subsequently came to John, Lord Somers, baron of Evesham. (fn. 138) Lord Somers had appeared as junior counsel for the seven bishops in 1688, and held many high offices of state, being in turn Attorney-General in 1692, Lord Keeper of the Great Seal in 1692–3, and Lord Chancellor in 1697. (fn. 139) He was impeached by the House of Commons in 1701 for various crimes, of which the chief was that he was supposed to be the instigator of the second Partition Treaty. After this he retired to his Brookmans estate, and passed the rest of his days in literary pursuits. He died in 1716 without issue, and his heirs were his sisters, Mary wife of Charles Cocks of Worcester, and Elizabeth wife of Sir Joseph Jekyll, knt., Master of the Rolls. (fn. 140) By a subsequent partition this manor came to Sir Joseph Jekyll and Elizabeth. (fn. 141) Joseph died in 1738 without issue, and on the death of his widow in 1745 the estate came to her nephew James Cocks, son of her sister Mary. (fn. 142) He was succeeded in 1750 by his only son James, who died unmarried in France in 1758, (fn. 143) when the manor came to his uncle John Cocks of Castleditch. He died in 1771 and was succeeded by his son Charles, (fn. 144) who with his son John Somers Cocks sold the estate in 1784 to William Strong. (fn. 145) From him it passed to Alexander Higginson, who sold it in 1785 to Humphrey Sibthorp, (fn. 146) of whom it was purchased in 1786 by Samuel Robert Gaussen. (fn. 147) On his death in 1812 it descended to his eldest son Samuel Robert Gaussen. He died in 1816 and was succeeded by his son Robert William, (fn. 148) who married Elizabeth Christian daughter and co-heir of James Casamajor of Potterells. On his death in 1880 Brookmans came to his eldest son Robert George Gaussen, who died in 1906, when the manor passed to his eldest daughter Emilia Christian wife of Mr. Herbert Loftus Tottenham, who now holds it. She has recently changed the name of Tottenham for that of Gaussen. The stables, which were untouched by the fire of 1892, have been added to and converted into a residence where Mrs. Gaussen now lives.

    Image of the Fortescue coat of arms. Azure a bend engrailed argent between two cotises or.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    FortescueAzure a bend engrailed argent between two cotises or
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Image of the Somers coat of arms. Vert a fesse dancetty ermine. Image courtesy of the BHO
    SomersVert a fesse dancetty ermine
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Image of the Cocks coat of arms. Sable a cheveron between three pairs of harts' horns argent.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    CocksSable a cheveron between three pairs of harts' horns argent
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    Image of the Gaussen coat of arms. Azure a lamb argent standing on a mount vert and a chief argent with three bees therein.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    Azure a lamb argent standing on a mount vert and a chief argent with three bees therein
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    The manor of MORE HALL (More, Gobions or Gubbins) was held by knight service as of the honour of Gloucester. (fn. 149) Salmon in his history of Hertfordshire states that this manor was held by Sir Richard Gobion in the reign of Stephen, (fn. 150) but the first authentic mention we have of it is in 1300, when Roger de Bachesworth, on granting his share of the manor of North Mimms (q.v.) to his brother Richard, retired to a certain manor of the Hospitallers called Morehall, where he died. (fn. 151) In 1390 John More held the manor, (fn. 152) and in 1397 one knight's fee and a half in North Mimms was held by John More of London. (fn. 153) In 1500 it was held by Sir John More, father of the famous Sir Thomas More, Lord Chancellor, who is said to have written 'Utopia' there. (fn. 154) After the trial and execution of Sir Thomas in 1535 the property was confiscated, and was granted in 1546 by Henry VIII for twenty-one years to William Honynges. (fn. 155) Edward VI in 1550 granted it to his sister Princess Elizabeth for her life, (fn. 156) and she in 1586 granted it to Margaret Knolls for twenty-one years. (fn. 157) Queen Mary in the first year of her reign granted the reversion after the expiration of these leases to Anne More, widow of John More, eldest son of Sir Thomas, and to Thomas son of John, and the heirs of Thomas, to be held as of the honour of Hunsdon for a twentieth part of a knight's fee. (fn. 158) Thomas More died in 1606, having settled the manor in 1603 upon his son Christopher Cresacre on his marriage with Elizabeth Gage. (fn. 159) In 1629 Christopher conveyed the manor to Thomas Rooper, for a settlement on the marriage of his son Thomas with Mary daughter of Sir Basil Brooke. (fn. 160) Christopher was succeeded by Thomas, and from him it passed to his second son Basil, his eldest son William having died before him without issue. (fn. 161) In 1693 Basil and his wife Ann, and his son Christopher Cresacre and Katherine his wife, sold the manor to Sir Edward Des Bouverie, (fn. 162) who died in 1695, leaving two sons William and Jacob. (fn. 163) They in 1694, in fulfilment of their father's will, conveyed it to John Williams in trust for Jacob, (fn. 164) who afterwards sold it in 1697 to Robert Beachcroft. (fn. 165) He sold it to Jeremy Sambrooke, (fn. 166) who by will dated 14 May, 1746, left the manor to Judith Sambrooke for life, with remainder to his nephew John Freeman, second son of his sister Susannah wife of John Cook Freeman. (fn. 167) On the death of Mrs. Sambrooke it came to John Freeman, who sold it in 1777 to John Hunter. (fn. 168) John by his wife Ann had a daughter Ann, wife of William Hornby, (fn. 169) by whom she had a daughter Hannah. Ann Hornby died in 1777, (fn. 170) and her father by his will dated 27 February, 1802, left the manor to Thomas Holmes husband of his granddaughter Hannah, (fn. 171) who in 1804 settled it upon himself and his son William. (fn. 172) Thomas assumed the name of Hunter, (fn. 173) and afterwards sold the manor to Thomas Nash Kemble, (fn. 174) who died in 1833. (fn. 175) In 1836 the estate was sold by the trustees of his will to Robert William Gaussen of Brookmans Park. (fn. 176) Shortly after Mr. Gaussen acquired this estate, he pulled down the house and incorporated the grounds surrounding it with Brookmans Park. (fn. 177)

    Image of the More coat of arms. Argent a cheveron engrailed between three moor - cocks sable.  Image courtesy of the BHO
    MoreArgent a cheveron engrailed between three moor - cocks sable
     Image courtesy of the BHO

    In the time of Thomas Nash Kemble the gardens at Gobions, which had been laid out by Bridgman, (fn. 178) were widely celebrated.

    LEGGATTS is a small estate in the hamlet of Little Heath, about four miles south-east of the parish church. It was a portion of Gobions, but was not sold with the estate on the death of Mr. Kemble. Mrs. Virginia Kemble his widow held it till her death, which occurred in 1870, when it was sold to William Webb More. (fn. 179) In 1881 it was bought by Mr. Samuel Gurney Sheppard, (fn. 180) from whom it passed to his sons Samuel Gurney and Gerald. The house is now occupied by the former.

    Manor of the RECTORY.—There seems to have been a manor attached to the rectory of North Mimms, of which successive rectors were lords, for in 1306–7 free warren was granted in North Mimms to John de Kirkeby, parson of the church of North Mimms, (fn. 181) and in 1366 and 1371 Thomas de Horton, rector of the church, held courts in North Mimms, (fn. 182) and William de Kesteven, a former rector, seems to have done so also. (fn. 183) There is now a farm known as Parsonage Farm in the north of the parish, which belongs to Mrs. Gaussen, and is occupied by Mr. Herbert Bosanquet.


    The church of OUR LADY, North Mimms, consists of chancel 32 ft. 3 in. by 18 ft. 4 in., with north vestry and north chapel 23 ft. 4 in. by 13 ft.; nave, 43 ft. 3 in. by 18 ft. 2 in., with north and south aisles 10 ft. 2 in. wide; south porch, and west tower. The masonry of the walls is of flints, with a certain quantity of Totternhoe stone and brick, and a few blocks of pudding stone, the roofs of nave and chancel being redtiled, and those of the aisles of flat pitch, leaded. The oldest part of the church is the chancel, which is of the same width as the nave, and has a slight lean to the south. The north chapel, which appears to have been built for a chantry founded in 1328 by Simon Swanlond, and had an altar of St. Katherine, follows the line of the chancel, and the chancel walls are doubtless older than the date of the building of the chapel. About 1340 the nave and aisles were entirely rebuilt, though it is probable that the dimensions of the former nave were preserved; and a central tower, which would have taken up the western half of the existing chancel, was planned but never carried out. The date of the stoppage is significant, and may be another instance of the effects of the Black Death of 1348–9, though the division of liability at this point between rector and parish must also be taken into account. When building was again undertaken it was on a less ambitious scale, and the lack of a tower was supplied by the erection of the present west tower in the fifteenth century. In modern times (1860) the church has been repaired, and the north vestry and south porch are modern additions.

    The chancel has a three-light east window, with net tracery, but only the arch and jambs are old. In the south wall are two windows, both with modern tracery, the eastern of the two, which has an ancient head and jambs, being of two cinquefoiled lights with a quatrefoil over, and the second having net tracery. Between the windows is a plain pointed doorway, the external stonework being modern, and below the first window an arched recess for the sedilia, with a fourteenth-century cinquefoiled piscina to the east. No stonework in the windows or doorway appears to be older than the beginning of the fourteenth century, but the masonry of the walls may possibly be of somewhat earlier date. At the east end of the north wall is the door to the vestry, made of white marble, and forming part of the basement of the large white marble monument of John, Lord Somers, 1716. The greater part of the north side of the chancel is taken up by an arcade of two bays in modern stonework, opening to the north chapel. The chancel arch, which was intended to be the western arch of a central tower, is high and massive, of three chamfered orders springing from recessed and chamfered piers with moulded capitals and bases, and is abutted on north and south by smaller arches of like detail which would have opened from the aisles into the transepts, that on the south being blocked. Parts of the west jambs of the northern and southern arches of the tower also remain. The north chapel, the east end of which is blocked by an organ, has two original windows on the north of two trefoiled lights with a flowing quatrefoil in the head, the lines of the inclosing arch following those of the tracery. The modern vestry is built against its east wall, and is lighted by a two-light east window, copied from those of the chapel.

    The nave is of three bays with north and south arcades of two orders, the details being like those of the chancel arch, and the aisles are lighted by three-light windows with net tracery, three on the north and one at the west of the north aisle, and two on the south and one at the west in the south aisle, the middle bay of the latter containing the south doorway with a continuous moulded outer arch having a hollow casement between two double ogees. Externally the windows have moulded labels, and all the stonework in the nave, except where repaired, is of the date of the rebuilding, c. 1340. At the east end of the south aisle is the blocked arch already noticed, and the south-east buttress is of red brick with a stone sundial which appears to be dated 1584 and has a mutilated inscription. The south-west buttress is of wrought stone and comparatively modern date. The tower has diagonal buttresses at all four angles, and has been built outside the west end of the nave, the junction being made by means of the eastern buttresses. It is tall, of three stages, with a plastered embattled parapet and a wooden spire covered with sheet copper. The belfry stage has windows of two cinquefoiled lights with flattened heads, and the stage below is blank except on the west, where there is a three-light window with net tracery, like those in the nave.

    Below it is a fine fourteenth-century doorway of three moulded orders with flowers in the hollows and jambs, with three engaged shafts and excellent foliate capitals. The labels over the arch and window are, however, of fifteenth-century section, though much patched with Roman cement, and it seems probable that both door and window were originally in the west wall of the nave, and have been reset here at the building of the tower. The wall on either side of the west door has bands of wrought stone, and in the lower part chequers of stone and flint. The east arch of the tower is of fifteenth-century date, with an engaged shaft and moulded capitals to the inner order, and at the south-west angle is a stone stair.

    The pulpit, of early seventeenth-century date, is a good specimen of woodwork, hexagonal with panelled sides, and a deep band of carving above the panels, the base and cornice being modern. The altar-table is also of the seventeenth century, with baluster legs, but with these exceptions the church retains no old woodwork in roofs or fittings, though the stone corbels of a former fifteenth-century nave roof remain. In the north chapel is some seventeenth-century heraldic glass with Coningsby alliances, and a few pieces of white and gold fifteenth-century glass with a well-preserved figure of a majesty.

    The font stands at the west end of the nave, and is modern.

    The church is rich in monuments. On the north wall of the church is a beautiful fourteenth-century brass (probably Flemish, c. 1350), said to be that of Thomas de Horton, 1360. It shows the figure of a priest in mass vestments holding a chalice, which is covered by a paten, and standing under a cusped canopy on a bracket-shaped base on which are two lions seated back to back, having between them a shield charged with a saltire between four crosses crosslet fitchy. Beneath the priest's feet is a stag. Above the canopy is a row of arched panels, that in the middle containing a figure of our Lord holding the soul of the deceased, between censing angels; and on either side, in the jambs of the canopy, are figures of Sts. Peter, James, and Andrew on the right hand, and Paul, John Evangelist, and Bartholomew on the left. On the south wall of the chancel, below the piscina, is a brass plate with an inscription to Thomas Hewet, 1587, and his wife Elizabeth, 1590; and east of the south door are the figures of a knight in plate armour with fluted tuilles and a mail hauberk, of a civilian and his wife with four sons and six daughters, and of Richard Butler and his wife, c. 1560. West of the south door is the figure of Elizabeth Knolles, 1458, and two sons, and an inscription below to her husband Robert Knolles, the date of his death being left blank. All these brasses were taken up from the floor in 1860.

    In the north-east angle of the chancel is the large white marble monument of John, Lord Somers, 1716, with a seated figure of Justice. The marble door in the base of the monument has been already noticed. In the north chapel is a panelled altar tomb of early fifteenth-century style, said to be that of Elizabeth Coningsby; and below the north-west window of the north aisle a late sixteenth-century altar-tomb of alabaster with an incised figure of a woman on the slab, the lines being inlaid with a black composition. Round the edge of the slab is a much-worn inscription in raised black-letter, a fine and effective work. It commemorates a lady of the Barford family. Near it on the walls are several eighteenth-century marble monuments, the best being that of George Jarvis, 1718, with a white marble bust.

    There are six bells, all by John Briant of Hertford, 1806, and a blank priest's bell.

    The plate comprises a silver communion cup of c. 1570, the marks being obliterated, with two bands of strap-work round the bowl; a second cup, copied from it in 1849; a paten of 1717, and a flagon of 1707, both engraved with a lozenge containing six ostrich feathers; and a brass almsdish. Besides these there are two unusual and interesting pieces, a tall standing covered cup of Nuremberg make, c. 1610, of silver gilt, and a very remarkable amber tankard, silver-gilt mounted, with figures of the Virtues in low relief, German work of the seventeenth century. This latter is loaned for safety to the British Museum. (fn. 184)

    The earliest register preserved is a strip of parchment with entries of baptisms 1565–67, the book next in date containing all entries from 1656 to 1725, and five entries of baptisms between 1647 and 1655. The third book, 1679–1749, contains the burials in woollen, and the fourth has all entries 1725–55. The fifth has marriages 1754–1812, the sixth baptisms 1755–93, the seventh burials 1755–1810, the eighth baptisms 1793–1812, and the ninth burials 1810–12.

    Christ Church, Little Heath, is a modern building in fourteenth-century style, erected in 1893, consisting of chancel, nave, and transepts. The registers date from the year of erection.


    The church of North Mimms was in early times attached to the manor. In 1237–8 Stephen de Somery presented, (fn. 185) and in 1239 the right of patronage was apportioned to Peter Picot as part of his share of the manor. (fn. 186) In 1293–4, however, Peter and Ralph de Monchesny agreed to present alternately, (fn. 187) and John, son and heir of Ralph, gave the advowson to John Sendale, bishop of Winchester, who was vicar from 1307 to 1311. The apparent absence of any like grant from the holders of the possessions of Peter Picot may partly account for the later disputes as to the tenure of the advowson. John, son of William Sendale and heir of Bishop John, gave it to Bartholomew Badlesmere and Margaret his wife, (fn. 188) and they, in 1320, were licensed to grant it to the canons of the religious house which Bartholomew had founded in Badlesmere. (fn. 189) In 1322 Bartholomew was executed for his adherence to Thomas, earl of Lancaster, and his wife Margaret was kept a prisoner in the Tower, until, through the mediation of William, Lord Ros of Hamelak, she obtained her freedom. (fn. 190) She afterwards retired to the house of the Minorite Sisters, without Aldgate, where a sum of 2s. a day was paid for her maintenance. (fn. 191) Giles, son of Bartholomew and Margaret, was a minor at the time of his father's death, (fn. 192) and when he died in 1338–9, he was seised of the advowson of North Mimms. It must, therefore, have been recovered from the canons at Badlesmere before this time. (fn. 193) Giles left no children, and his heirs were his four sisters, Margery wife of William, Lord Ros de Hamelak, Maud wife of John de Vere, earl of Oxford, Elizabeth wife of William de Bohun, earl of Northampton, and Margaret wife of John Tiptoft, (fn. 194) but the advowson was assigned to his wife Elizabeth, daughter of William de Montacute, earl of Salisbury, who afterwards married Sir Hugh le Despenser. The reversion was allotted to Margaret wife of John Tiptoft, who had two sons, John and Robert. (fn. 195) Margaret died before Elizabeth, and on the death of the latter the advowson descended to John. He died a minor in 1360, and his brother Robert succeeded. (fn. 196) On attaining his majority, three years later, (fn. 197) Robert enfeoffed John de la Lee of the advowson, who in turn enfeoffed Thomas Strete, Henry Strete of Knesworth, and Adam de Wyvelingham. (fn. 198) They enfeoffed Nicholas de Thorneton, and Thomas Bedewin, clerks, (fn. 199) who in their turn granted the advowson to Richard II and William bishop of London. (fn. 200) These grantees confirmed it to the prior and convent of the Charterhouse, London, in 1378, (fn. 201) and the church was appropriated to them in 1383. (fn. 202) In 1399, Beatrix Mountviron impleaded the prior as to his right to the advowson, as it had been included in the lease of the manor made to her by William Swanlond, (fn. 203) and she alleged that it had been inherited by William from his father Simon, (fn. 204) who had indeed been able to usurp a presentation during the minority of Robert Tiptoft. (fn. 205) Further, during the course of a suit between Henry, earl of Lincoln, and William son of Simon Swanlond, 'a certain venerable and trusty man' testified that his uncle, William de Kesteven, had been induced to insert a grant of the advowson in the charter by which he gave a quarter of the manor to the husband of Beatrix Mountviron, although he had openly said, at the time of the sale, that he had no right therein. In 1398 Beatrix had alienated this quarter of the manor to Thomas Knolles, and had presented John Rowland to the church. In this year she united with Thomas Knolles in promising to Rowland forgiveness of a certain payment of £500, if he should maintain her right and come to no agreement with the prior. (fn. 206) The king, however, ordered, in 1401–2, that restitution of the patronage should be made to the Charterhouse. (fn. 207) In 1508 the abbot and convent leased to Thomas King and Joan his wife, for twenty years, all the parsonage of North Mimms, except the advowson of the vicarage, and a stable and chamber annexed to the upper end of the hall of the said parsonage. (fn. 208) This may possibly be the manor of the rectory already referred to. After the expiration of the above lease they re-leased it in 1526 for thirty years to Allen Hord, with the same exceptions, and on condition that if the prior or proctor or other servants of the Charterhouse should come to the said parsonage twice or thrice every year during the said time, Allen 'shall find and minister to the prior or proctor and to three or four of their servants, with their horses by the space of two days and two nights there abiding, sufficient meats and drinks, with hay, provender, and litter for their horses at every such time during the said thirty years.' Allen also undertook to deliver at the Charterhouse every year, between Easter and Midsummer, as many loads of good 'char colys,' every load containing twenty-four sacks well filled with 'colys,' as shall be needful to be spent within the said Charterhouse, receiving for each load 6s. (fn. 209) Allen was pledged not to cut or poll any timber or underwood on the land of the said parsonage, except for reasonable cart-bote, plough-bote, and fire-bote. The lease was to be in force only three years after the death of Allen, if he should die within the said thirty years. (fn. 210) After the Dissolution the rectory and advowson were granted in 1544 to Henry Grubbe, (fn. 211) who died seised in 1557, leaving his son George his heir. (fn. 212) George died in 1577, and was succeeded by his son Eustace, (fn. 213) who was a minor at the time of his father's death, and had livery of the rectory and advowson in 1582. (fn. 214) From him they passed on his death in 1642 to his son John, (fn. 215) upon whom it had been settled by his father in 1612 on his marriage with Mary daughter of William Preston of Childwick. (fn. 216) William Emerton presented in 1681, (fn. 217) and it afterwards came to the family of Blackmore. In 1691 it belonged to Thomas Blackmore, who married Anne, second daughter of Sir Jonathan Raymond. (fn. 218) Thomas Blackmore, jun., presented in 1707, (fn. 219) and Raymond Blackmore, probably a son of Thomas, conveyed it in 1729 to Charles Osborn, (fn. 220) and in 1749 Henry Blackmore presented. (fn. 221) He was the son of Thomas and Anne, and was succeeded by his daughter Elizabeth, wife of William Fullerton. (fn. 222) It afterwards came to their son William Fullerton, who devised it to Catherine Fullerton, his half-sister. (fn. 223) The king presented in 1768 by a lapse, and Catherine Fullerton in 1790. (fn. 224) In 1801 Catherine conveyed the advowson to Samuel Robert Gaussen, from whom it descended, with the manor of Brookmans, to Mrs. Herbert Loftus Tottenham, now Mrs. Gaussen, the present patron.

    The living of Christ Church, Little Heath, is a vicarage in the gift of the Church Patronage Society.

    In 1328 Simon Swanlond founded a chantry of one priest in the chapel of St. Katherine in the parish church of North Mimms. The chaplain was to say one mass daily at the altar of St. Katherine for Simon and his wife during their lives; and after their death for their souls and those of their parents and of all faithful departed. He might celebrate nowhere else without the leave of Simon or his heirs, and he was not to say mass on Sundays and feast-days until after the celebration in the parish church had been completed. The presentation rested with Simon and his heirs. The priest must swear at his institution to keep the ordinance of his chantry, and was removable by the diocesan. (fn. 225) In 1334 Simon obtained licence to increase the endowment of the chantry, (fn. 226) and in 1404 the advowson was transferred, with leave from the pope, by William Swanlond to Thomas Knolles. (fn. 227)

    In 1549 land and tenements which had been granted for lights and repairs to the church were granted to Sir John Perient and Thomas Reve. The tenement was called Berdford or the Church House, and had lately been in the tenure of John Pavys, and was then held by Henry Grubbe. (fn. 228)

    A brotherhood of our Lady existed at North Mimms in the sixteenth century, for William Hottyng bequeathed a legacy to the brotherhood by his will dated 1515. (fn. 229)

    In this parish there is only one licence of a house as a meeting-place for Nonconformists. This house was registered in 1776, (fn. 230) but the Nonconformists seem to have obtained no footing in the parish, and have no chapel here at the present time.


    By an order of the Charity Commissioners, dated 11 August, 1891, the following charities were brought under one body of trustees, (fn. 231) and are administered together for the benefit of the poor of the parish, namely:—

    Charities of a donor unknown (prior to 1622) and of John, Lord Somers (deed 1716), the charity estates consisting of Reddall Field and Carpenter's Grove Field, near Hawkshead, containing 16 acres and 6 acres 3 roods respectively, producing together a yearly income of £20.

    Charities of Thomas and Anne Edwards (deed 1626), consisting of a cottage, barn, and garden, and about 10 acres of land in the parish of St. Peter, St. Albans, producing £25 a year; also of three pieces of land in Angerland Common containing about 2 acres.

    Charity of Sir Thomas Hyde (deed 1655), consisting of 1 acre 3 roods 27 poles abutting on Roestock Common, in Angerland Common, and 35 poles in centre of the common. The lands in Angerland are let together to one tenant at £4 a year.

    Charity of Martha Coningsby, consisting of 2 acres 2 roods 20 poles in Woodsdell Common, producing about £2 10s. a year, distributable among ten of the poorest inhabitants on Shrove Tuesdays.

    The real property above mentioned was vested in the official trustee of charity lands by order of 12 May, 1882.

    The official trustees of charitable funds hold the sums of stock belonging to the following charities also comprised in the above-mentioned order of 1891, namely:—

    Charities of Edmund Faldo (will 1626), Sir Thomas Hyde, and John Seranck (1655), £1,179 11s. 9d. £2 10s. per cent. annuities arising from sales of land; income for poor and apprenticing.

    Charity of Dame Lydia Mews (will 1727), £305 14s. 9d. consols.

    Charity of Anne Hunter (will 1784), £256 10s. 3d. consols.

    Charity of Joseph Sabine (deed 1816), £109 12s. consols; income for bread and meat to widows on Easter Eve, and

    Charity of Miss Holmes (will 1847), £121 5s. 5d. consols, income for one poor widow.

    The net income of the charities, amounting to about £100 a year, was applied in 1904 as to £53 for widows' allowances, £19 in the distribution of bread at church, and £21 in apprenticing, and in the distribution of Mrs. Coningsby's, Mr. Sabine's, and Miss Holmes' gifts.

    Caroline Lydia Casamajor, by her will, proved at London, 10 September, 1853, left £3,000 consols for support of a school at Water End for educating and in part clothing the children of the poor, and for repairing and improving the school-house, the school to be a Church of England school. In 1905 the consols were realized and proceeds re-invested in purchase of £3,264 9s. 1d. India 2½ per cent. stock; a sum of £166 13s. 4d. stock was subsequently sold out to be replaced within a period of twenty-five years for making an addition to the girls' and infants' school, leaving a balance of £3,097 15s. 9d. India 2½ per cent. stock with the official trustees, which, under an order of the Board of Education of 9 February, 1906, was apportioned as to £196 1s. stock for repairs of schoolhouse, £2,176 6s. 1d. stock for salaries of schoolmistresses, and £725 8s. 8d. for girls' clothing, fuel, books, &c. Two-thirds of the dividends computed as if of the original sum of £3,264 9s. 1d. India 2½ per cent. stock, are now paid over to the Herts. County Council.

    A History of the County of Hertford: Volume 2

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    • 1. Information from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
    • 2. a Recov. R. D. Enr. East. 22 Geo. III, m. 143, and Private Act 18 Geo. III, cap. 49.
    • 3. Nearly all the cottages on Pancake Hall have been pulled down.
    • 4. Home Co. Mag. 1902, p. 124.
    • 5. V.C.H. Herts. i, 311.
    • 6. Red Bk. of Exch. (Rolls Ser.), 506, and Feud. Aids, ii, 425; cf. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4282, 4290, 4400.
    • 7. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4282, 4290, 4400; Inq. p.m. 14 Edw. I, No. 13.
    • 8. Red Book of the Exch. (Rolls Ser.), 506, and Testa de Nevill (Rec. Com.), 270.
    • 9. Excerpt. e Rot. Fin. (Rec. Com.) i, 182.
    • 10. Ibid. i, 295.
    • 11. Inq. p.m. 31 Hen. III, No. 3.
    • 12. Ibid.; Excerpt. e Rot. Fin. 1, 319.
    • 13. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4314.
    • 14. Ibid. 4447.
    • 15. Feet of F. Div. Cos. 39 Hen. III, No. 96.
    • 16. Coram Rege R. Trin. 27 Hen. III.
    • 17. Abbrev. Plac. (Rec. Com.), 210; Assize R. 323, m. 21.
    • 18. Hund. R. (Rec. Com.), i, 190.
    • 19. This name is erroneously given as Monchesny in the plea roll.
    • 20. Plac. de Quo Warr. (Rec. Com.), 279.
    • 21. Inq. p.m. 29 Edw. I, No. 120.
    • 22. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17.
    • 23. Ibid. 4415.
    • 24. Feet. of F. Herts. Trin. 10 Edw. II.
    • 25. Ibid. East. 11 Edw. II; MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4418.
    • 26. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4349.
    • 27. Chart. R. 10 Edw. II, m. 15, No. 36.
    • 28. Ibid. 1 Edw. III, m. 35, No. 74.
    • 29. Feet of F. Herts. Hil. 6 Edw. III.
    • 30. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4424.
    • 31. Ibid. 4425.
    • 32. Ibid. 4426.
    • 33. Ibid.
    • 34. Ibid. 4435.
    • 35. Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 7 Hen. VI, and Feud. Aids, ii, 452.
    • 36. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4284.
    • 37. Inq. p.m. 14 Edw. I, No. 13.
    • 38. Feet. of F. Herts. Mich. 22 Edw. I.
    • 39. Ibid. Hil. 19 Edw. I.
    • 40. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4419.
    • 41. Ibid. 4348, 4588 and Inq. p.m. 30 Edw. I, No. 58; Feud. Aids, ii, 425.
    • 42. Feet of F. Herts. Hil. 14 Edw. II.
    • 43. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4388.
    • 44. Ibid. 4311, 4328.
    • 45. Ibid. 4333.
    • 46. Ibid. 4419, 4307.
    • 47. Ibid. 4318.
    • 48. Ibid. 4393.
    • 49. P.R.O. Anct. D. C. 3246; Feet of F. Herts. Trin. 13 Edw. III, and Ibid. East. 13 Edw. III.
    • 50. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4349.
    • 51. Feet of F. Herts. East. 11 Ric. II; MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4443.
    • 52. Ibid. 4445; Feet of F. Herts. Hil. 14 Ric. II.
    • 53. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Lond. A, parcel 1.
    • <
    • 54. Ibid. Press 17, 4285.
    • 55. Ibid. 4285.
    • 56. Ibid. 4296.
    • 57. Ibid. 4275.
    • 58. Ibid. 4295. There seems to be no other mention of this overlordship.
    • 59. Ibid. 4277.
    • 60. Ibid. 4279.
    • 61. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4281, 4324, 4356, 4365.
    • 62. Ibid. 4290.
    • 63. Ibid. 4358, 4360, 4403.
    • 64. Herald and Gen. vii, 553.
    • 65. Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 11 Hen. VII.
    • 66. Ibid. Trin. 22 Hen. VII.
    • 67. Herald and Gen. vii, 553.
    • 68. Feet of F. Herts. Trin. 32 Hen. VIII.
    • 69. Ibid. Trin. 21 Hen. VIII.
    • 70. Berry, Herts. Gen. 163.
    • 71. Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 4 & 5 Phil. and Mary.
    • 72. Inq. p.m. 34 Eliz. pt. 2, No. 51.
    • 73. Ibid. (Ser. 2), vol. 535, No. 34.
    • 74. Ibid. No. 35.
    • 75. Cal. of Com. for Compounding, 854.
    • 76. Close, 1658, pt. 3, No. 1, and Recov. R. East. 1658, rot. 105.
    • 77. Burke, Extinct Baronage.
    • 78. G. E. C. Complete Peerage under Leeds; Recov. R. Mich. 35 Chas. II, rot. 52.
    • 79. G. E. C. Complete Peerage; Recov. R. Hil. 8 Geo. II, rot. 261, and Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 21 Geo. III.
    • 80. G. E. C. Complete Peerage and Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 34 Geo. III.
    • 81. G. E. C. Complete Peerage.
    • 82. Feet of F. Herts. Hil. 40 Geo. III.
    • 83. Ibid. Hil. 3 & 4 Geo. IV; Herts. County Rec. ii, 299.
    • 84. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 284.
    • 85. Ibid.
    • 86. Burke, Landed Gentry, under Sibthorp.
    • 87. Information supplied by Mr. Batty, vicar.
    • 88. Midd. and Herts. N. and Q. i, 73.
    • 89. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund, 284.
    • 90. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4270, 4271.
    • 91. Ibid. 4426.
    • 92. Ibid. 4437.
    • 93. Ibid. 4290.
    • 94. Recov. R. East. 1658, rot. 105; Herts. County Rec. i, 184.
    • 95. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4448.
    • 96. Ibid. 4413.
    • 97. Ibid. 4363.
    • 98. Ibid. 4449.
    • 99. Ibid. 4271.
    • 100. Ibid.
    • 101. Ibid. 4321.
    • 102. a Ibid. 4290.
    • 103. Ibid. 4274.
    • 104. Ibid. 4406.
    • 105. Ibid. 4284.
    • 106. Ibid. 4234.
    • 107. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), vol. 400, No. 53. In 1548 a capital messuage called Potterells in North Mimms was returned as belonging to Lord Seymour (S.P. Dom. Edw. VI, iv, No. 44, i).
    • 108. Close, 8 Chas. I, pt. 29, No. 22.
    • 109. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 458.
    • 110. Berry, Herts. Gen. 163.
    • 111. Ibid.
    • 112. Ibid.
    • 113. Berry, Herts. Gen. 163.
    • 114. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 458.
    • 115. Ibid. and Misc. Gen. et Her. (New Ser.), i, 87.
    • 116. Ibid.
    • 117. Ibid.
    • 118. Burke, Landed Gentry, under Sibthorp.
    • 119. Ibid.
    • 120. Inq. p.m. 16 Hen. VII, vol. 15, No. 3.
    • 121. Wrottesley, Pedigrees from the Plea R. 174.
    • 122. Home Counties Mag. iv, 124 (1902).
    • 123. Early Chan. Proc. bdle. 9, No. 12.
    • 124. Early Chan. Proc. bdle. 9, No. 12.
    • 125. Close, 34 Hen. VI, m. 25.
    • 126. Inq. p.m. 16 Hen. VII, vol. 15, No. 3.
    • 127. Ibid. 10 Hen. VIII, No. 126.
    • 128. Ibid. vol. 177, No. 55.
    • 129. Ibid. (Ser. 2), vol. 286, No. 188.
    • 130. Close, 14 Jas. I, pt. 31, No. 3.
    • 131. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), vol. 400, No. 53.
    • 132. Feet of F. Herts. Trin. 14 Chas. I.
    • 133. Inq. p.m. 21 Chas. I, pt. 26, No. 23.
    • 134. Burke, Extinct Baronage, under Dudley of Clapton.
    • 135. Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 18 Chas. II; Close, 18 Chas. II, pt. 8, No. 30.
    • 136. Home Counties Mag. (1902), 125. From a survey of the house and lands of Brookmans, taken in 1638, it seems more probable that the house was built at about that time, for in this survey are enumerated the various rooms of 'a fair house new built with brick,' for which Mr. Pinder paid yearly £36. John Walker, a tenant at will, paid £2 for 'the old mansion house.' At the end of the survey this note is added: 'the goodness of the tenure, the beauty of the seat, the nearness to London, are considerations to increase the value' (S. P. Dom. Chas. I, ccccviii, No. 142).
    • 137. Feet of F. Herts. Trin. 1 Anne.
    • 138. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 453.
    • 139. Dict. Nat. Biog.
    • 140. Burke, Dormant and Extinct Peerage.
    • 141. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 453.
    • 142. Burke, Peerage and Baronetage.
    • 143. Ibid.
    • 144. Ibid.
    • 145. Recov. R. East. 24 Geo. III, rot. 31.
    • 146. Feet of F. Herts. Trin. 25 Geo. III.
    • 147. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 453.
    • 148. Burke, Landed Gentry.
    • 149. Inq. p.m. 21 Ric. II, No. 29.
    • 150. Salmon, Hist. of Herts. 64.
    • 151. Inq. p.m. 29 Edw. I, No. 120.
    • 152. Home Counties Mag. iv, 124 (1902).
    • 153. Inq. p.m. 21 Ric. II, No. 29.
    • 154. Home Counties Mag. iv, 124 (1902).
    • 155. Pat. 1 Mary, pt. 2, m. 17.
    • 156. Ibid. 5 Edw. VI, pt. 3.
    • 157. Ibid. 28 Eliz. pt. 6.
    • 158. Ibid. 1 Mary, pt. 2, m. 17.
    • 159. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), vol. 299, No. 150.
    • 160. Recov. R. East. 5 Chas. I, rot. 32.
    • 161. Burke, Commoners, iii, 451.
    • 162. Close, 5 Will. and Mary, pt. 6, No. 14; Feet. of F. Herts. Mich. 5 Will. and Mary.
    • 163. Harl. Soc. viii, 396.
    • 164. Close, 6 Will. and Mary, pt. 7, No. 20, and ibid, pt. 6, No. 7.
    • 165. Ibid. 9 Will. III, pt. 5, No. 22.
    • 166. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 449; Wotton, Engl. Baronetage, iv, 89.
    • 167. Ibid.
    • 168. Ibid.
    • 169. Mon. Ins. in North Mimms church.
    • 170. Ibid.
    • 171. D. Enr. Recov. R. East. 44 Geo. III, m. 77.
    • 172. Ibid.
    • 173. Mon. Ins. to Harriet Holmes.
    • 174. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 288.
    • 175. Mon. Ins. in North Mimms church.
    • 176. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 288; Home Counties Mag. iv, 124 (1902).
    • 177. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 288.
    • 178. Jones, Views of Seats, Mansions, &c. of Herts. (pub. 1829).
    • <
    • 179. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 289.
    • 180. Information supplied by Mr. S. G. Sheppard.
    • 181. Chart. R. 35 Edw. I, m. 16, No. 38.
    • 182. P.R.O. Ct. R. (Gen. Ser.), bdle. 178, No. 19.
    • 183. Ibid.
    • 184. It was presented to the church in 1751 by Lady Meux.
    • 185. Linc. Epis. Reg. Grosteste, fol. 8.
    • 186. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4447.
    • 187. Feet of F. Herts. Mich. 22 Edw. I.
    • 188. Midd. and Herts. N. and Q. ii, 79; Parl. R. (Rec. Com.), ii, 439a.
    • 189. Pat. 13 Edw. II, m. 6.
    • 190. Close, 16 Edw. II, m. 23.
    • 191. Ibid. m. 14.
    • 192. Inq. p.m. 2 Edw. III (2nd nos.), No. 23.
    • 193. Inq. p.m. 12 Edw. III (2nd nos.), No. 54a.
    • 194. Ibid.
    • 195. Midd. and Herts. N. and Q. (1896) ii, 79.
    • 196. Inq. p.m. 33 Edw. III, No. 39.
    • 197. Ibid. 36 Edw. III, pt. 1, No. 134.
    • 198. Midd. and Herts. N. and Q. (1896) ii, 77.
    • 199. Pat. 1 Ric. II, pt. 6, m. 6.
    • 200. Ibid.
    • 201. Ibid.
    • 202. Ibid. 5 Ric. II, pt. 1, m. 26, and Linc. Epis. Reg. Bokingham, fol. 315, and Misc. Charters Aug. Off. vol. 6, No. 16.
    • 203. MSS. of D. and C. Westm. Press 17, 4435.
    • 204. Midd. and Herts. N. and Q. (1896), ii, 27, 28.
    • 205. Ibid. 79.
    • 206. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4273.
    • 207. Ibid. 4272.
    • 208. Conventual Leases, Aug. Off. London, 113.
    • 209. Convental Leases, Aug. Off. London, 113.
    • 210. Ibid.
    • 211. Pat. 36 Hen. VIII, pt. 7.
    • 212. Inq. p.m. 3 & 4 Ph. and Mary, vol. 109, No. 82.
    • 213. Ibid. vol. 177, No. 110.
    • 214. a Fine R. 24 Eliz. No. 33.
    • 215. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), vol. 522, No. 37.
    • 216. Ibid.
    • 217. P.R.O. Inst. Bks.
    • 218. Clutterbuck, Hist. of Herts. i, 459.
    • 219. P.R.O. Inst. Bks.
    • 220. Recov. R. East. 2 Geo. II, rot. 146.
    • 221. P.R.O. Inst. Bks.
    • 222. Cussans, Hist. of Herts. Dacorum Hund. 303.
    • 223. Ibid.
    • 224. P.R.O. Inst. Bks.
    • 225. MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4411.
    • 226. Pat. 8 Edw. III, pt. 1, m. 10.
    • 227. Close, 6 Hen. IV, m. 22d.; MSS. of D. and C. of Westm. Press 17, 4404.
    • 228. Aug. Off. Particulars for Grants, 3 Edw. VI, sect. i, No. 1866; Pat. 3 Edw. VI, pt. 7.
    • 229. Wills, Archdeaconry of St. Albans, Wallingford, 162.
    • 230. Urwick, Nonconformity in Herts. 454.
    • 231. The trustees are now appointed in the following way: Vicar (ex officio), three co-optative trustees, two appointed by the Parish Council in the place of churchwardens, and two representative trustees.