Scope and Content

These records were deposited in November 1988 by the lord of the Manor of Adderbury, as accession number 2817, with a few additions by other depositors in February 2006 (accession 5502) and July 2010 (accession 5952). The bulk of the material pertains directly to Adderbury Manor itself, but there are also documents relating to smaller manors such as Adderbury Rectory, Horley and Hornton, Middleton Cheney and Kings Sutton. The period covered by the documents is late sixteenth to early twentieth century, the majority being eighteenth and nineteenth century court rolls and copies serving as title deeds. Court minutes were kept as rough notes for the rolls.

Historical Background:

Adderbury Manor was confirmed to the see of Winchester in 1284. From 1405 the demesne lands were leased to a succession of tenants. After sequestration, the estates were sold by the Parliamentarians to Edward Ash in 1645. In 1661 his widow Anne Countess of Rochester bought a new lease from the Bishop of Winchester (who had regained the manor), then in 1696 Edward Lee, Earl of Lichfield, became her legatee. At his death in 1716 the lease reverted to the Bishop, who sold it to John Campbell, Duke of Argyll and Greenwich. He was succeeded by his wife Jane in 1743 and his daughter Caroline in 1767. In 1770 her Adderbury estates passed to Henry Duke of Buccleuch, a son by her first husband (Francis, Earl of Dalkeith). The Duke leased the manor until 1801, at which date it was split up: Richard Haydon, Richard Bignell and Fiennes Wykeham all took a lease, succeeded in 1837 by Benjamin Aplin of Banbury, who purchased the manor from the Bishop.

Finally the estate passed through a succession of hands during the following century: Charles Dairds in 1879. George Bliss in 1882, Oliver Stockton in 1920 and Lord Elton in 1954.

The Manor of Adderbury Rectory was granted to New College in 1381 by William Wykeham, Bishop of Winchester, but did not hold much land until 1768 when the college was allotted 456 acres for rectorial tithes. It passed through a number of lessees, including the Cobb family from 1620 until the death of Sir George Cobb in 1762; his daughters Anne and Christina married John Balgrove and Paul Methuen respectively. In 1791 Paul Cobb Methuen and Christian (children of Paul and Christina) gave their share to Richard Heydon, who obtained a lease of the whole manor in 1794, along with Richard Bignell and Charles Wyatt. In 1818 Wyatt alone took the lease, succeeded by John Whitlesee, Nathaniel Stilgoe, then Zachariah Stilgoe in 1875.

The Prebendal Manor of Horley and Hornton was leased by the crown during the sixteenth century, before being purchased by John Austin in 1624. It passed to his son Robert in 1639, then his son John, followed by Nathaniel (died in 1728) and his son John of Drayton, who in turn sold the manor to Edward Metcalfe, in 1741. In 1892 the lands were bought by James Stockton, a solicitor from Banbury, before the manorial rights lapsed.

(Based on information in the "Victoria History of the counties of England: A History of Oxfordshire, Volume IX, Bloxham Hundred.")

List of Abbreviations used:

Brig. - Brigadier.

Bucks. - Buckinghamshire.

Co. - County.

cont. - continued.

dau. - daughter.

decd. - deceased.

form. - formerly.

Gen. - General.

Hants. - Hampshire.

Herefords. - Herefordshire.

Hon. - Honourable.

Middx. - Middlesex.

n.d. - not dated.

Northants. - Northamptonshire.

occ. - in the occupation of.

poss. - in the possession of.

purc. - purchased (from).

rec. - recently.

sq. - square.

surr. - surrendered (by).

Warwicks. - Warwickshire.

Worcs. - Worcestershire.

yds. - yards.

yeo. - yeoman.

Catalogued by Mark Priddey 1991, with additions in June 2013

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