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More from janes

Worfield Manor was split into two sub manors. The first, Wyken Manor, was created in the eighteenth century when William Yelverton Davenport bought the Courts Baron from the owners of Worfield Manor, the Whitmore family. The second, Ackleton Manor, I have yet to explore but this is a record also from the eighteenth century. The process of subdivision as in Wyken's case was called subinfeudation, to us today a term it is hard to understand until you see it in action. The Court Baron was where land transfers took place, a sort of manorial land registry and every transfer incurred a cost, so to the new owner of the Court there was a financial benefit.

There was also a status benefit. You could then, correctly be called, 'Lord of the Manor,' and as owner of this title you would be sure to keep the traditions of the court as it was in medieval times. The symbolism of handing over property by the rod was also preserved and the new tenant had to adhere to the customs of the manor and swear fealty to the lord. This was done in ancient times by a person putting their hands together as in prayer and then placing them into the lord's hands. (The Steward often stood in for the Lord and acted on his behalf.)

This is an example from Ackleton. The record is in Shropshire Archives 513/2/13/1/12

Ackleton Court Baron held in the house of John Clarke on 20th April 1796 before Joseph Smith, gent, steward and Jonah Barney, blacksmith and Richard Rushton, yeoman. Joseph Green surrenders 8 and a half acres of land called Mearlows late Eykins, 8 acres also Mearlows late Barratt and one nook and the fourth part of  a nook

William Yelverton Davenport must at some time acquired other financial benefits. How big the tithes were at this time I don't know, nor indeed when he acquired the right to them. Similarly the Patron of the Church.

QE/1/2/16 Inclosure of Cranmere Heath.
Between Thomas Whitmore of Apley lord of the manor (1) William Yelverton Davenport of Davenport House (patron of the parish church and impropriator of all great tithes except the tithes of grain and corn in the villages or townships of Swancott, Chesterton and Burcott)


Subinfeudation in Worfield Manor

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