Bernard Burke.

A visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain (Volume 1) online

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bella his wife granted to John Moreton,
citizen and haberdasher of London, the
" tenement cald Moreton House in Whalley,
and all the lands and tenements thereto be-
longing, in the occupation of Gilbert More-
ton ;" with reversion to Roger Noel, or Nowall,
son of Roger Noel, of Read, Esq., and
Catherine, daughter of John Moreton.

HOPE END, Ledbury, Herefordshire, the
seat of Thomas Heywood, Esq. This mansion
is modern, having been built so recently as
1811, but it occupies the site of a smaller
and older house, which once stood there,
and Avhich was probably erected in the reign
of Queen Anne.

Up to about 1700 it was possessed by the
Holders, and tlien by — Pritchard, Esq., whose
only childmarricd Henry Lambert, Esq. They
also had no male heir, and their daughter,
inheriting tlie property conveyed it by mar-
riage to Sir Harry Tempest, who sold it in
1810 to E. ]M. Barrett, Esq., and it was
purchased in 1832, by Thomas Heywood,

The house is spacious and of the Moorish
order of architecture. Tlie grounds belong-
ingto it are extensive, hilly, and well-wooded,
the views from them extending over many
counties, in which are the Wrekin, and Cots-
Avold, the ]\Ialvern, the Hatterall, the Sugar
Loaf, and the Graig, hills. Wherever in-
deed the eye turns it is met by eminences
more or less precipitous and lofty.

ASTLEY HALL, near Chorley, on the north-
west margin of the Chor, in the county of
Lancaster, the residence of Dame Susanna
Hoghton, relict, by her first marriage, of
Thomas Tnwnley Parker, Esq. ; and by her
second, of Sir Henry Philip Hoghton, Bart.
This lady is also the sister and sole
of Peter Brooke of Astley, Esq., and repre-
sentative of the Charnotjks of Charnock.

Astley is picturesquely situated on a small
piece of water ; but unfortunately, the fine
timber that once added so much to its other
beauties, was cut down about five-and-forty-
years ago. It is a large pile of wood,
plaster, and brick, in the Elizabetlian style
of architecture, with a spacious hall of en-
trance, and a drawing-room, remarkable for
its richly ornamented ceiling and antique

furniture. One apartment still bears th-e
name of Oliver CromwelVs Room, from his
having slept there after the battle of Preston
in 1648. As regards the time when the
house was first erected, an external beam has
the date 1600 carved upon it ; but some other
portions, which were pulled down about
forty years ago, were to all appearance re-
ferable to a much earlier date. The mass of
it is supposed to have been built by Robert
Charnock, one of the gentlemen of Lanca-
shire who signed the loyal declaration from
that county to Queen Elizabeth. We find
him also signing a similar address to James
the First, upon his accession. There is a
tradition that upon Charnock Hall being
destroyed by fire in the reign of Elizabeth
Astley became the residence of the Char-
nocks. From existing family records, it
appears that they possessed this estate
as early as the reign of Henry III., or John,
and with them it continued till Margaret,
heiress and sole issue of Robert Charnock,
Esq., married, in 1673, Richard Brooke, Esq.,
second son of Sir Peter Brooke of Mere, in
Cheshire, whose descendant Peter Brooke of
Astley, Esq., dying unmarried, 1787, the
property devolved to his only sister, and
sole heir, Susanna, the present possessor..

GLEBSTONE, the seat of Richard Henry
Romidell, Esq , High Sheriif of York-
shire in 1835, owes its interest chiefly to
the style of its architecture, and the ex-
ceeding beauty of its site. The building
was originally commenced by Ricliard
Roundell, Esq., of Marton and Screven,
the representative of an ancient and emi-
nent Yorkshire family which held property
at Screven, time immemorial ; and he dying-
unmarried it devolved to his brother, tlie
Rev. William Roundell, A.M., by wliom it
was completed. The latter was educated
at jMagdalen College, Oxford, where his
acquirements procured for him a fellow-
ship. Subsequently he was made deput}^-
lieutenant for the West Riding of York-
shire, and was married at Thornton in
Craven, January 1775, to Mary, youngest
daughter of the Rev. Henry Richardson,
rector of that place, by wdiom he was fa-
ther of the present possessor.

Gledstone House is in the parish of
Marton, an estate brought in marriage to
the Roundells, by the heiress of the Hart-
leys at tlie commencement of the 18th cen-
tury. It stands embosomed in woods upon
the crest of a hill commanding an extensive
view of the magnificent district of Craven.
Tlie foreground presents an undulating
extent, varied by gentle risings and slight
depressions, and spotted with antique haw-
thorns. Beyond this agahi stretches a
variegated expanse of ricli meadow-land.



interspersed with villages that lend a qnict
animation to the scene, and take away from
wliat might else be its too great loneliness.
The whole is encircled by a wild horizon
of brown, rugged fells, boimding iind de-
fending it like some gigantic rampart. Ho
great indeed is the variety of the landscape
that it may well be called an epitome of
the whole country.

CHIEK CASTLE, Denbighshire, about a
mile and a half from the village of the same
name, and six from Llangollen, is the seat
of Colonel Eobert MyddeltonBicldulph, Lord
Lieutenant of the county, paternally de-
scended from the Biddulphs of Ledbury, in
Herefordshire. Before the foundation of the
present castle, there stood another building
here called Castle Crogen, and the neigh-
bouring ground has been much celebrated
in Welsh chronicle as the field of a sangui-
nary conflict between the natives and their
English invaders in the time of Heni-y the
Second. " And here," says the old chro-
nicler, Caradoc of Llancarfau, "herelthinke
it not unmeete to declare the cause wh}' the
Englislimen used to call the Welshmen Cro-
gens, as a word of reproach and despite; but
if they knew the beginning, they should find
it contrarie. For in the viage tliat King
Uenrie the Second made against the Welsh-
men to the mountains of Berwin, as he laie
at Oswestree, a number of his men sent to
trie the passages, as they would have passed
Ofla's ditch at the castell of Crogen, at
which place there was, and is at this dale,
a narrow waie through tlie same ditch, for
that ditch appeereth yet to this dale very
deepe through all that countrie, and beareih
his old name. These men, I saie, as they
would have passed the straite were met
withall, and a great nrnmber of them slaine,
as appeareth b}^ their graves there yet to be
scene, whereof the strait beareth the name.
Therefore the Englishmen afterward not
forgetting this slaughter, used to cast the
Welshman in the teeth in all their troubles
with the name of Crogen, as if they would
signifie unto them thereby that they should
looke for no favour, but rather revengement
at their hands ; which worde in processe of
time grew to be taken on another signi-

Many of the English slain at the Battle of
Crogen were buried in OfTa's Dyke, and the
spot, in allusion to the event, still retains the
appellation of Adwy'r Beddau — The Pass of

At this time Crogen Castle was in the
possession of the lords of Bromtield and
Dinas Bran, the representatives of Grylfydd
Mallor, Lord of Bromfield, eldest son of
Madoc ap Meredith, last Prince of Powys,
and continued in their possession till the
death of Gryfiydd np Madoc, a strenuous

partisan of Henry the Third and Edward
the Upon the death of Gryffydd,
Edward, using the feudal right of wardship,
conferred on two of his favourites the guard-
ianship of the Welsh chieftain's grandsons,
Madoc was assigned to John, Earl AA'arren ;
and Llewelyn to Roger Mortimer, son of
Roger, Baron of Wigmore. But both of
these nobles proved false to their trust.
'J'hey conspired together and murdered the
children, seizing afterwards upon their pro-
perty, when by agreement 15romfield and
Yale fell to Earl Warren, and Chirk and
Nantheudwy to Mortimer, who then built
the present Castle Chirk. It did not, how-
ever, remain long in his family, being sold
by his grandson John to Richard Fitzalan,
Earl of Arundel. The story is to be found
in an old manuscript still preserved at Chirk

For three generations Chirk Castle con-
tinued in the family of the Fitzalans, after
which it passed to Thomas Mowbray, Duke
of Norfolk, in right of his wife Elizabeth,
eldest sister to Thomas, Earl of Arundel.
Upon the disgrace and banishment of IMow-
bray in 1397 it was probably resumed by the
Cro^ra, and granted again to AYilllam Beau-
champ, Lord of Abergavenny, Avho married
the otlier sister. By the marriage of this
nobleman's grand- daughter, sole heiress of
Richard Beauchamp, Earl of Worcester, with
Edward Nevil — afterwards Lord Aberga-
venny — it was conveyed into that family in
the reign of Henry VI. It next seems to
have been possessed by the unfortunate Sir
William Stanley, who " rcpayred it welle ;"
but upon his execution for really, or falsely,
conspiring against Richard III., it once
more devolved to the Crown, At a sub-
sequent period, Henry VIII. granted it to
his natural son Henry Fitzroy, Duke of
Somerset, and upon his early death it again
became a possession of the Crown.

Elizabeth granted it — probably at the
same time with Kenilworth — to her favourite
Dudley, Earl of Leicester. Upon his death
Cliirk Castle came into the hands of Lord
St. John, of Bletso, who sold it in 1595 to Sir
Thomas Myddelton, Knt., Lord j\Iayor of
London, eldest son of Richard Myddelton,
Esq., Governor of Denbigh Castle, ascion of
the ancient family of Myddelton, of Gwayny-
nog, which derived descent from Ritid Flaidd,
Lord of Penllyn, a distinguished Welsh
chieftain in ihe 12th century.

During the Civil War Sir Thomas Myddel-
ton, son of Sir Thomas, the Lord Mayor,
brother of Sir Hugh, who brought the New
River to London, was a stanch adherent of
the parliament against the cause of Charles.
But the course of events soon led him, as it
did many others, to change his opinions.
In 1G59 he took up arms with Sir George
Booth to restore the old government, but the




latter being defeated by Lambert he flung
himself with a few troops into Cliirk Castle.
Here he was quickly besieged by tlie parlia-
mentary general, and though he made a stout
defence for a day or two he was obliged at
length to surrender upon tlie best terms he
could obtain,the supply of water to the Castle
having been cut off by his vigilant adversar}^.
His means indeed of defence seem to have
been altogether inadequate. In a letter
dated Chirk Castle, August 24th, 1(559,
Lambert tells Lcnthall the Speaker, " there
were about 1 50 men in this place, great store
of provisions botji for men and horses for
many months, one little piece of brass ord-
nance,and competent quantityof ammunition.
. . . . It is the opinion of several of the
chief ofiicers of the army that tliis castle
may be demolished, that it may no longer
be an occasion of trouble and inconvenience
to the country as it hath often been." TJiis
advice was taken by the parliamejit, for in
their proceedings of tlie 24th of August
immediately following we find it, " Resolved
that Chirk Castle be demolished, and the
Lord Lambert is to see it demolished ac-
cordingly." But Cromwell dying the same
year the order was not carried into effect.
The little piece of cannon above alluded to
is still to be seen at Chirk Castle.

The present castle is a grim and imposing
edifice, covered partly with iv)', and which
may without exaggeration be said to frown up-
on the prospect below and around it. It stands
upon the summit of a lofty hill projecting
fromthegreat mass of the Berwjai mountains,
and is a quadrangular embattled structure,
defended at each corner by a low massive
tower : between two of these towers on the
north side is the great arched gateway,
formerly guarded by a portcullis. The area
into which it opens is a square of considerable
dimensions, having the various apartments
ranged about it. The entrance to the prin-
cipal rooms is on the north side of the court ;
the entrance on the west side leads to the
private apartments. In this part, considerable
alterations were made by the late Mrs.
Myddelton l^iddulph, in the gothic style.
The old entrance to the hall is by a flight
of steps in the north side of this quadrangle.
There is also a large oak gallery, a hundred
feet by twenty-two, extending the whole
length of the east wing, and containing some
good portraits and other paintings, besides
several old cabinets, the work, probably, of
some Italian or French artists, one a very
beautiful specimen, the gift of King Charles
H. to Sir Thos. Myddelton. At the south
end of this gallery is a chapel, now out of

Among the relics of times passed by, is an
old bed of crimson damask, in which Charles
I. is said to have slept in 1G45.

Chirk Castle is stated to have been built

by Roger Mortimer, in 11 GO, and, as war
was then understood and conducted, must
have been a place of great strength, if not
welbnigh impregnable. Its front is about
two lumdred and fifty feet in length, and the
battlements are so broad that two persons
may easily walk side by side upon them.
In every tower are narrow winding stair-
cases, small rooms with window recesses
terminating in a slit or loop-hole ; those
towards the court are the largest, doors
moving on ponderous hinges and massive
bolts all tending to prove tliat the building
has been erected at a time when the chief
object in view was security. The magnitude
of the fortress may be best imagined from
the enormous sum it took to repair the
damages effected by Cromwell's cannon.
One year proved sufficient for this work,
and the gallant defender of the castle lived
to see it completed. Neither has a dungeon
been forgotten, that indispensable portion
of a feudal castle ; it is in the shape of the
letter D.

Nothing can be more beautiful than the
situation of this fine old building, standing
as it does upon an eminence, bac-ked by the
Ber-w}'n mountains. Upon the south side of
it runs the river Ceiriog, through a deep and
picturesque valley, the ground of the san-
guinary battle, in 1165, already mentioned,
when the Cambrian Princes defeated their
enemy and compelled his retreat into Eng-
land. From the summit of the castle is a
pi'ospect of great magnificence, extending
without interruption into many different

The park is upon a large scale, and ex-
ceedingly picturesque, from its undulating
surface, and from the slope of the hill
extending behind it, and towards the north.
Near New Hall — an old seat of the Myddel-
tons I'ebuilt many years ago, and surrounded
by a moat — at the entrance into the park
from Llangollen and Wrexham, is a pair
of gates remarkable for the richness as
well as delicacy of their workmanship, said
to have been made from the iron of the port-
cullis, by four brothers, and to have taken
seven years in their completion.

In the neighbourhood are many old remains,
the most noticeable of which is a part of OlTa's
dyke, thrown up in 7G3 for a boundary
between the ancient Britons and the Saxons.

This estate has been held by the Myddel-
tons since the end of the sixteenth
century, and it may be added, as a fact
worthy of notice, that the present R. Myd-
delton I'.iddulph, Esq. derives, through
female descent, from the great family of
Mortimer, in whose possession Chirk Castle
was seven hundred years ago.

GODINTON, Kent, the seat of the Rev.
Nicolas Toke. At a very early period of



our history this estate was possessed by the
Godintons, the last of whom in 1402 con-
veyed it to Thomas Goklwell, Esq. The
heiress of this last mentioned family married
Thomas Toke, Esq., of Bere " Justice of
the Peace and Quorum, a person of great
reputation hi this County," lineally des-
cended from the Sire de Toque, or Toe, who
came over with the Conqueror in 1066, and
was present at the battle of Hastings. Upon
his death Godinton fell to his second but
eldest surviving son, John, and continued in
the family of the latter until the time of
Nicolas Toke : he died Avithout male issue,
whereupon Godinton passed over his daugh-
ters to his nephew Nicolas in whose de-
scendants the property is still vested.

This mansion retains many of its early
features, and is therefore proportionably
interesting. The eastern front belongs to a
remote period, while there is a hall yet
older. The staircase is of very ancient
carved oak, its window being composed of
painted glass, in which most of the arms and
quartermgs of the famil}-, that before had
been scattered through the whole house,
are carefully brought together. The draw-
ing-room above is wainscoted with oak very
curiously carved, and more particularly along
tlie upper part of it, representing the exer-
cises and evolutions of the ancient militia.
In the mansion are several fine family por-
traits by Holbein, Cornelius Janson, Peter
Lely, Hogarth and other eminent artists.

The excellence of the soil and the mild-
ness of the climate are sufficiently proved
by the circumstance of Godinton having
once possessed a vineyard remarkable for
the superior flavour of its Avines. Even
now the immense size of the oaks, larger
even than the contiguous chestnuts and
ashes, is evidence to the same fact.

ALDBAH CASTLE, two-and-a-half miles
south from Brechin, county of Forfar, the
seat of Patrick Chalmers, Esq. The place
is so named from the Celtic Ald, a burn or
brook ; and Bar, a height. The date of
the orighial structure is unkno-wn, but the
greater part of the existing house was
erected between 1590 and 1G08, and includes
in it a round tower, and some portions of
an older building. This addition — or,
more properly, new house — was built by Sir
Thomas Lyon, who for some time was
Treasurer of Scotland. A more recent
addition was made by the late Patrick
Chalmers, Esq., father of the present pro-
prietor. Of late the building has undergone
extensive repairs, and the old terrace-garden
that had been destroyed has lately been
restored after a new design. The estate has
been successively held by the families of Cra-
mond of that Ilk, Lyon, Sinclair of Bilbister,

for two years only, Young of Easter Seaton,
and Chalmers.

The greater part of the building is in the
Scotch castellated style. The arms of Sir
Thomas Lyon, brother to Lord Glammis,
impaling those of his second wife, Dame
Euphemia Douglas, daughter of the Regent
Morton, are cut in stone below the bartizan.

Sr D

They bear the initials T L E D. There
was a similar coat on a smaller scale, now
concealed by the modern building. The Sir
Thomas Lyon just mentioned was Trea-
surer of Scotland, while his brother, Lord
Glammis, was Chancellor. James Cramond,
the last of the name, of Aldbar, was their
nephew. Sir Thomas being his guardian and
curator, with whose consent, and by whose
advice, the estate was sold to the Chancellor,
and afterwards transferred to Sir Thomas.
The Cramonds were of ancient family,
having large possessions and great alli-
ances, though it is believed that not an
acre of land is now held throughout Scot-
land in their name. The Youngs were nearly
allied to the Lyons, and the Chalmers were
allied to the Youngs, but to each name the
lands passed by purchase.

The castle was built upon a neck of rock
jutting into a deep ravine, that formed its
defence upon three sides ; on the fourth side
Avas a paved court under the Avall of the
castle, which was here from eleven to twelve
feet thick. The court was protected by a
Avall on the outer side, and the cattle were
driven into it at night for security against
the Highland cattle-lifters. Upon three
sides the ground has at different times been
much altered. On that next to the bridge
the height from the water to the top of the
bartizan is one hundred and forty feet, the
stream falling rapidly froin the bridge.
The site is picturesque, and the grounds com -
mand extensive views of Strathmore, backed
hj the more distant Grampians.

NEW HOUSE, Pakenham, five miles N.E.
of Bury St. Edmunds, Sufiblk, the seat of
the Eev. Walter John Spring Casborne, a
magistrate for that county. It is a small
mansion of red brick, with mullioned win-
dows, and in the Elizabethan style of archi-
tecture. From a date over the entrance-
door it would seem to have been built in

This estate was at one time possessed by
the family of the Springs, who originally
came from Houghton-le-Spring,in the county
of Durham, and obtained New House by
purchase. From them it passed to the Rev.
John Symonds, in right of Mary, his Avife,
sister and co-heir of Sir William Spring,
Bart, of Pakenham Hall, and Avas again
conveyed in marriage by their daughter and



heiress to the Rev, John Casborne, grandfa-
ther of the present proprietor.

By the family of the Springs this mansion
was used as a dowager-honse, their chief
place of residence beuig Pakenham Hall.

KNELLS, near Carlisle, Cumberland, the
seat of John Dixon, Esq., wlio in 1838
was sheriff of that county. It stands upon
■what, in the days of " rugging and reiving,"
used to be called the Debateable Land on
the north side, and near the Roman wall.
As a matter of course, it was the scene of
many a bloody fight between the English
and Scotch borderers, Avhose days of truce
were not always, or even often, regulated
by the general peace between the two coun-
tries. The game of war was of itself too
delectable an amusement for either party to
abstain from it for long together,^ while tlie
Scotch had the additional temptation of their
■own poverty, and the abundance of their
■Southern neighbours.

The estate of Knells came to the present
proprietor from his uncle, the late Richard
Ferguson, Esq. The mansion was built in
1824. It is in the Grecian style of archi-
tecture, commandmg a beautiful prospect
that includes the Vale of Eden, well worthy
of the appellation. The gardens and plea-
sure gi-ounds are extensive, with a park of
two hundred and fifty acres, through Avhich
flows a running stream. There is also a
small lake, or ornamental water, that con-
siderably heightens the general beauty of
the grounds.

QUOENDON HOUSE, Leicestershire. This
secluded and picturesquely-situated mansion
is an erection of the present century. It is
of a plain, imosteutatious character; but
whatever it wants in external adornment is
amply compensated by its internal commo-
diousness, and by its suitability to the re-
quirements of a iirst-rate covmty family.
The ancient family of Farnham, who trace
an undisputed descent from Robert de Farn-
ham, a companion of the Conqueror, has
been seated here from a period at least ante-
cedent to the times of Henry HI., in whose
reign Sir Robert de Farnham possessed a
large estate at Quorndon. There were two
ancient mansions here — the Upper and the
Nether Hall. The latter, about 1427, be-
came the residence of Thomas Farnham,
Esq., a younger branch, whose descendant
in the eighth generation, Benjamin Farnham,
Esq., married Sarah, the sole surviving re-
yiresentative of the Farnhams of the Upper
Hall ; and thus the long-divided estates be-
came eventually vested in their son, Edward,
the grandfather of the present possessor,
Edward Basil Farnham, Esq., M.P. for
North Leicestershire. Quorndon House, on

its being rebuilt by the late Mr. Farnham,
had its site slightly, but very advantage-
ously, changed. It stands in a delightful
and well-wooded park, abounding in pleasant
slopes._ Before it, on the confines of the
park, rises the well-known and much-admired
Baddon Wood— while " Farnamwode," a
name which it has borne from the times of
the first possessor, forms another beautiful
feature in the lovely landscape to the south.
Several members of the family liave been
eminent men. Sir John Farnham, a gallant
soldier of the time of Queen Elizabeth, and
a great favourite with that Princess, as
her numerous grants in more than twenty
lordsliips abundantly testify. Among the
many fine family monuments in Quorndon
Chapel, that of this Sir John is the most re-
markable. He is represented in the act of
laying siege to a strong fortress, and stand-
ing on one leg, the other having been mu-
tilated by time, and not in war, he has the
appearance of having wanted the missing
limb, or perhaps of having just been de-

Online LibraryBernard BurkeA visitation of the seats and arms of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain (Volume 1) → online text (page 13 of 79)