The parish of Halton

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Victoria County History

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William Farrer & J. Brownbill (editors)

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1914

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118-126

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'The parish of Halton', A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8 (1914), pp. 118-126. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=53280 Date accessed: 02 September 2014.


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HALTON (fn. 1)

Haltun, Dom. Bk.; Halton, 1233 and usually; Halchton, 1251; Halghton, Halgton, 1253.

Halton extends for over 5 miles along the north bank of the Lune, the western limit being marked by the point where Howgill Beck joins the river. For much of the length the bank rises rather steeply from the river, and is clad with trees, so that the view is always pleasant, and often, as at the far-famed Crook of Lune, is beautiful. At this point the river bends south for a quarter of a mile or more to turn round a narrow projecting eminence, and then turns north and west again; the banks on each side are here well timbered. Generally the hilly surface rises towards the north and east, 300, 400 and 500 ft. above sea level being attained at various points near the northern border; but there are numerous valleys, some with woods, down which run becks to join the Lune. The area of the township and parish is 3,913½ acres, (fn. 1a) and it had a population of 892 in 1901.

Halton village, with the parish church, hall, castle mound, and St. Wilfrid's Well, (fn. 2) stands beside the river, about a mile and a half from the western boundary. Here Cote Beck joins the Lune. To the east are the mills, now used as a leather cloth manufactory; formerly they were cotton mills. Northwest of the village is Strellas, and over a mile to the north is Stub Hall. Carus Lodge (fn. 3) and Shefferlands (fn. 4) are modern houses. Some distance to the east of the village, in a little clough, is Halton Green, and after passing round the hill to the north-east Halton Park, (fn. 5) in another clough, is reached, with Hawkshead on the further side of it. Still further north-east Lower Highfield, Middle Highfield and Far Highfield are found in turn, being separated by intervals of half a mile each. Another half-mile eastward is situated Aughton hamlet with its church. To the north of it are Sidegarth and the moor.

The principal road is that from Lancaster northeast to Kirkby Lonsdale. It goes along near the river bank till Halton village is reached, a minor road to Kellet branching off to the north; after passing the village its course is inland and upward, past the former moorland. From the village one road goes west to Hest Bank; another south, crossing the Lune by a bridge at the end of which, in Quernmore, is Halton railway station; and a third goes east to Halton Green, and then, turning to the south, crosses the river by a stone bridge (fn. 6) close to the Crook of Lune, and so leads to Caton village. From the principal roads several minor roads go north to Nether and Over Kellet, while another branches off to the east to pass through Aughton towards Gressingham. There are various footpaths; one goes by the river-side for a considerable distance; another goes from Halton Park through the Highfields to Aughton; and from Aughton Church a third goes to Sidegarth. The railway from Lancaster crosses the narrow promontory above described, about a furlong of the line being within Halton; there are in consequence two bridges over the Lune.

Though the remains of an ancient cross in the churchyard have a special interest to the antiquary, (fn. 7) and though before the Conquest Halton was the head of a great lordship, the history of the place is uneventful. The chief foresters of Lancaster had it for their principal manor, but from about 1290, when the Gernet inheritance passed to the Dacre family, the lords of the place do not seem to have resided there. Their manor-house was burnt down in 1322 by the devastating Scots, and it is uncertain whether or not it was ever restored. The rectors, also, who in the absence of the Dacres would be the most influential men in the parish, were often perhaps non-resident, serving the church by curates. Thus the people had only the quiet existence of a rural district.

When the Carus family purchased the manor they made it their residence. They seem to have obtained the old rectory-house and to have turned it into their dwelling-place. (fn. 8) Being hostile to the Reformation for several generations, they also had little influence and fell into decay. The Jacobite army in 1715 passed through the parish on the way to Lancaster.

Agriculture was and is the chief industry of the inhabitants, but there are several residential estates, and some manufactures, as mentioned above, have existed for a century or more. (fn. 9) The soil is loam with gravel subsoil; there are 217 acres of arable land, 3,032½ of permanent grass and 250 of woods and plantations. (fn. 9a)

By the county lay of 1624 Halton had to pay £1 15s. 11¼d. when the hundred was called upon to raise £100. (fn. 10)

The parish is governed by a parish council.

The Aughton Pudding Feast (fn. 11) was held last century, but has now been discontinued.

Sir John Underwood Bateman Champain, formerly owner of Halton Park, was a distinguished soldier. (fn. 12) Thomas Denny, a classical scholar, was born at Halton and buried at Melling. (fn. 13)

Manor

Before the Conquest HALTON appears to have been a place of considerable importance, and in 1066 was the head of a fee or lordship held by Earl Tostig, the brother of King Harold. It was then assessed as six ploughlands, (fn. 14) afterwards reduced to three. As Count Roger of Poitou and his successors preferred Lancaster, the prominence of Halton was lost, but it became the chief manor of the extensive though scattered fee of the chief forester of the honour. (fn. 15) This fee was in the 12th century held by the Gernet family, (fn. 16) and in 1212 Roger Gernet held the fee of one knight by the office of forester. (fn. 17) Ten years later, though much had been granted out, he held the three plough-lands in Halton by serving as chief forester throughout the county. (fn. 18) He died in 1252, being then described as 'forester of fee to keep vert and venison in the forest of Lancaster.' The issues of the forest were valued at 64s. 3d. yearly, and when a forge was raised in the forest Roger's share of the iron was worth 9s. a year. In virtue of his office he held of the king the three plough-lands in Halton, one of them pertaining to the church, of which Roger had the advowson; there were two water corn mills and one fulling mill. He also had the moiety of the Lune fishery at that part of the river. He was succeeded by his son Benedict, then of full age. (fn. 19)


Gernet. Gules a lion rampant argent crowned or within a bordure engrailed of the last.

Benedict Gernet (fn. 20) in 1280 surrendered his tenement to Edmund lord of Lancaster in order that the tenure might be modified; thenceforward Halton and the other manors were to be held of the earl by the fourth part of a knight's fee and the rent of £5 yearly. (fn. 21) Soon afterwards, before 1292, (fn. 22) by the marriage of Joan daughter and heir of Benedict (fn. 23) to William de Dacre of Dacre Halton passed to this family, the said William in 1297 holding the fourth part of a fee in Halton and Fishwick. (fn. 24) He obtained a grant of free warren in 1303. (fn. 25) Though the Dacres and their heirs held Halton for about three centuries, (fn. 26) their history belongs to Cumberland and there is little trace of their interest in Lancashire. (fn. 27)

A survey made early in the 16th century recounts the tenure of the manor—viz. by a knight's fee, paying to Lancaster Castle £6 13s. yearly—with its liberties including free warren. A tenant farming a tenement, 'grisland,' or cottage at death owed a heriot to the lord before that due to the church. The tenants were bound to do suit to the lord's mill to the thirteenth measure. (fn. 28) The bounds were defined in 1553; they began on the Lune at Baxtongill at the north-east end, and went north-west by the Standing Stone to Burthryke Beck, then south-west by Swarthbeck by the bolthole in Dunnel Mill dam to Shawsbeck, turning round the west side of the old house of the Stub, and going through Styrleys (Strellas) and by Beaumont Close (cote) to Thevesay Lane, and down this line to Holgill Beck and the Lune. (fn. 29)

In November 1583 Christopher Carus, William Wolfall and William Heysham purchased the manor of Halton, the advowson of the church and various lands from Philip Earl of Arundel and Anne his wife. (fn. 30) A division was probably made, (fn. 31) for Christopher Carus and his descendants held the manor and advowson afterwards. (fn. 32) In the year of his purchase Christopher and his wife Elizabeth were brought before the Ecclesiastical Commission as recusants, but were returned as 'conformed.' (fn. 33) From the subsequent history it is clear that the conformity was only temporary. (fn. 34) Christopher Carus died in 1631 holding the manor of the king as of his duchy by the fourth part of a knight's fee. His son Thomas, then aged fifty years, succeeded. (fn. 35) He was returned as 'a Papist,' (fn. 36) but was too old to take part in the Civil War, though he lived till 1656. (fn. 37) He gave the manor to his son Thomas, who took arms against the Parliament and had his estates sequestered. There was no religious difficulty, for he took the National Covenant in 1646 and at length was admitted to compound at a fine of £467. (fn. 38)


Carus. Azure on a cheveron between nine cinquefoils argent three mullets gules.

He recorded a pedigree in 1665, his son Christopher being then twenty-eight years old and having a son Thomas, aged three. (fn. 39) From this time, however, there is little to record of the family. (fn. 40) Christopher Carus was regarded as a Jacobite in 1690. (fn. 41) When the Jacobite army reached Kirkby Lonsdale on 6 November 1715, it is related that 'Esquire Carus and his two sons, Thomas and Christopher, all Papists, who lived at Halton Hall, joined them,' and gave information of the unprepared state of Lancaster. (fn. 42) Thomas Carus, Christopher's grandson, (fn. 43) who became a Protestant, (fn. 44) sold the manor to William Bradshaw in 1743. (fn. 45) The purchaser's niece Sarah married Robert Fletcher, rector 1777 to 1795; to her son William Bradshaw the Halton estate was bequeathed in 1774. He took the surname of Bradshaw, and in 1815 was succeeded by his son William Fletcher Bradshaw. Through loss of fortune his estates had to be sold in numerous parcels in 1836. Halton Hall, with the manor, was purchased by John Swainson, and after his death in 1 868 was sold to Major Robert Whitle. The present owner, by purchase from the last-named, is Mr. Edmund Sharpe, who resides at the Hall. (fn. 46) Most of the land has been gradually enfranchised, but a little remains copyhold. Court records from 1743 to the present time are preserved. (fn. 47)

Halton Hall stands close to the right bank of the Lune to the south of the church. It is said to have been built by one of the last of the Carus family on the site of the ancient manor-house of the Dacres, (fn. 47a) but this is very doubtful. It has been much altered and modernized and additions were made during the last decade of the 19th century.

Of the other estates in the township but little is on record, (fn. 48) though Stub, (fn. 49) Highfield, Aughton and Sidegarth are mentioned. Furness Abbey had an estate. (fn. 50) Land called the Stub, occupied by Thomas Curwen, and recently belonging to St. Christopher's chantry, was in 1564 sold to Richard Robson. (fn. 51) The freeholders in 1600 (fn. 52) were Thomas Bland (fn. 53) and James Thornton (fn. 54) of Halton Park, Edmund and Thomas Barwick, (fn. 55) Robert Burton (fn. 56) and William Heysham of Highfield, (fn. 57) and Thomas Wolfall of Aughton. There was a dispute as to Sidegarth in 1593. (fn. 58) Edmund Raft died in 1614 holding land in Aughton of the king by the twohundredth part of a knight's fee. (fn. 59) The Crofts of Claughton had land in Aughton. (fn. 60)

An inclosure award was made in 1800, (fn. 61) an Act for the purpose having been passed in 1797.

There was until 1858 a peculiar jurisdiction for granting probate of wills and letters of administration. (fn. 62)

Church

The church of ST. WILFRID (fn. 63) stands at the west end of the village on somewhat precipitous ground on the north bank of the Lune, the high road from Lancaster to Kirkby Lonsdale skirting the churchyard on the south side. The church consists of a chancel 25 ft. by 18 ft. with north organ chamber and vestry, nave 49 ft. 9 in. by 18 ft. 9 in., with north aisle 11 ft. 9 in. wide, south porch with room over, and west tower 12 ft. 10 in. square, all these measurements being internal. With the exception of the tower the whole of the building, which is of yellow sandstone with red tiled roofs and in the style of the 14th century, was erected in 1876–7. (fn. 64) The tower belongs probably to the first half of the 16th century, (fn. 65) but the church (fn. 66) of which it formed part was pulled down in 1792, and a new building in the style of the time, rectangular in plan, without chancel and with large round-headed windows on each side, was erected and stood till 1876. Some fragments of 12th-century masonry, found at the time of the last rebuilding and now built into the walls of the porch, would point to a church on the same site at that period, and the crosses in the churchyard go back to a still earlier date.

The tower is 55 ft. in height, built of rubble with dressed quoins, and has diagonal buttresses of five stages at the west side going up its full height and a projecting vice in the north-east corner. The parapet is embattled and has angle pinnacles, and the belfry windows are square-headed of two segmental lights with hood mould over. The tower was formerly covered with rough-cast, but except on the west and south, where it is covered with ivy, the walling is now bare. The west window is square-headed, of two lights with hood mould, above which is a single pointed light with square label. The west doorway is modern, and the north and south sides are plain except for two small single-light windows on the south side. The tower arch, which was opened out in 1877, is segmental in form and consists of a single chamfered order carried down the jambs to the ground. The line of a former pointed roof shows above the arch. The fragments of two ancient crosses (fn. 67) are preserved under the tower, which is open to the nave and used as a baptistery. The fittings are all modern. The font and cover date from 1848. In the east wall of the porch, the upper story of which is of timber and plaster, are built two fragments of sculptured grave slabs.

The churchyard lies on the south and east sides of the building, and was enlarged in 1872 and 1901, a further extension eastward being made and a lychgate erected in 1907. On the south side stands the Anglo-Saxon cross already described and illustrated. (fn. 68) It was restored and erected in its present position in 1891. The sundial plate which at one time stood on part of the cross shaft (fn. 69) is now mounted on a new pedestal near the porch. It bears the inscription 'For Saint Wilfrite Church at Halton 1635. Pereunt et imputantur.' The gnomon is missing. There is a headstone with a brass to William Richardson of Halton (d. 1691) against the east wall of the chancel, and on the north side of the building is a large stone mausoleum in the classic style of the day, erected to the memory of William Bradshaw of Halton Hall, who died in 1775.

There are three bells, two of which are apparently of pre-Reformation date. The smaller is inscribed in Gothic characters' See. Petre o.p.n.' and the second 'See. Johannes o.p.n.' The large bell is dated 1597, with the inscription in Roman letters: 'Respice finem Maria.'

The plate consists of a chalice of 1697–8 inscribed 'Halton in Comitat Lancaster'; a breadholder and flagon of 1714–15 inscribed 'The Gift of Thomas Withers to Halton Church in Lancashire anno 1715,' with the maker's mark of Edward York; a chalice of 1740–1 made at Newcastle, with the maker's mark I. L.; and a chalice and paten of 1897.

The registers (fn. 70) begin in 1592.

Advowson

The church may have existed before the Conquest, but the records do not go further back than 1190. (fn. 71) The advowson was appurtenant to the manor until the beginning of the 18th century, when it was sold, and has since passed by descent and sale through many hands. (fn. 72) It was purchased in 1854 by John Hastings of Downpatrick and the present patron is the rector, the Rev. J. H. Hastings.

The value of the rectory in 1291 was estimated at £12, but this was reduced to £3 7s. 3d. owing to the devastation wrought by the Scots in 1322, (fn. 73) and the value of the ninth of sheaves, &c., in 1341 was likewise given as £3 7s. 3d. (fn. 74) In 1527 the benefice was worth 40 marks, (fn. 75) but the clear value in 1535 was recorded as less than this—viz. £20 0s. 6d. (fn. 76) The clear profits of the parsonage were recorded as £80 in 1650, independently of a suit respecting alleged glebe land then in progress (fn. 77) ; but in 1717 the certified value was much less—viz. £57 17s. 9d. (fn. 78) The net value is now given as £314. (fn. 79)

The following have been rectors:—

InstitutedNamePatronCause of Vacancy
c. 1190Benedict Gernet (fn. 80)
c. 1206A. (fn. 81)
oc. 1253Thomas (fn. 82)
oc. 1296–1304Eustace de Cottesbech (fn. 83)
oc. 1323–9William de Tatham (fn. 84)
oc. 1352–63Robert de Killum (fn. 85)
oc. 1376–1407Thomas de Huyton (fn. 86)
oc. 1419–39Richard Garth (fn. 87)
oc. 1476–91Edmund Southworth (fn. 88)
c. 1510Christopher Cansfield (fn. 89)
c. 1520John Robinson (fn. 90) Sir William Dacre
1 Aug. 1542Rowland Threlkeld, LL.B. (fn. 91) William Lord Dacred. J. Robinson
10 Oct. 1565William Battie (fn. 92) Thomas Lord Dacred. R. Threlkeld
10 Feb. 1570–1Ambrose HetheringtonThomas D. of Norfolkdepr. W. Battie
30 Nov. 1591James ThorntonChristopher Carusd. A. Hetherington
Feb. 1605–6William Sawrey, M.A. (fn. 93) d. J. Thornton
14 Feb. 1609–10James Redmayne, M.AWilliam Lord Mounteagled. W. Sawrey
2 Jan. 1620–1Daniel Meyre (fn. 94) Thomas Carusd. J. Redmayne
24 Nov. 1630Richard Jackson, M.A. (fn. 95) Henry Parkerres. D. Meyre
12 Mar. 1634–5The king
oc. 1644Thomas Whitehead, M.A. (fn. 96)
25 Feb. 1660–1Edward Lawrence (fn. 97) Thomas Carus, jun.
? 1672William Winckley, B.D. (fn. 98)
29 June 1677Thomas Withers, M.A. (fn. 99) Thomas Butlerd. W. Winckley
16 Oct. 1706George RishtonThomas Moor, M.B.d. T. Withers
Thomas Benison
6 Aug. 1747Christopher Wetherherd, B.A. (fn. 100) James Wetherherdd. G. Rishton
1 June 1749George Wilson, M.A. (fn. 101) Hastings Wetherherdd. C. Wetherherd
20 Dec. 1762Christopher Wetherherd, M.A. (fn. 102) Deborah Wetherherdres. G. Wilson
31 Dec. 1777Robert Fletcher, B.A. (fn. 103) Chr. Wetherherdres. C. Wetherherd
10 Apr. 1795James Stainbank, M.A. (fn. 104) Wm. Bradshaw Bradshawd. R. Fletcher
16 May 1825Thomas Mackreth, D.D. (fn. 105) Robt. Fletcher Bradshawd. J. Stainbank
8 Nov. 1870Samuel Hastings, M.A. (fn. 106) Samuel Hastingsd. T. Mackreth
17 Mar. 1902David Mathews Thomas, B.A. (fn. 107) J. H. Hastingsd. S. Hastings
2 Nov. 1903John Harold Hastings, M.A. (fn. 108) res. D. M. Thomas

There are no names in the list calling for special notice, though Eustace de Cottesbech was an active royal official and John Robinson was Prior of Lanercost. The normal pre-Reformation staff seems to have been the rector and his curate, but the former was not always resident. After the Reformation the career of William Battie is of some interest, and the exact position of Thomas Whitehead in the Commonwealth period requires to be made clear. In 1706 the churchwardens reported that the rector duly performed his office, wearing a surplice at the reading of divine service and administration of the sacrament, observing holy days, and instructing the youth of the parish in the Church Catechism. (fn. 109)

There was no endowed chantry in the church, but a hermitage of St. Helen existed in the 16th century. (fn. 110)

The chapel at Aughton was probably older than the Reformation, for it was not described as anything new in 1650, but it had no endowment, (fn. 111) and was probably used only occasionally. It was partially endowed by Robert Burton and others in 1697 and later, (fn. 112) and about 1716 was rebuilt by the inhabitants (fn. 113) and called St. George's. The certified income was £24 in 1722. (fn. 114) It was again rebuilt in 1864 and called St. Saviour's. The curacy has been held with the rectory since 1889; the value is given as £120. During the time it was a separate benefice the incumbents were presented by the rector of Halton. The following have been in charge:—

c. 1720John Hadwen, B.A. (fn. 115) (Christ's Coll., Camb.)
1740Joseph Nicholson (fn. 116)
oc. 1793Jacob Fletcher
1808Thomas Winfield
1815John Farrer
1817John Morland
1856Thomas Procter Rigby, M.A. (fn. 117) (St. John's Coll., Camb.)

A schoolmaster occurs at Halton in 1639, (fn. 118) and an endowment was given about 1700. (fn. 119) The curate of Aughton was, by the terms of Robert Burton's will, obliged to teach school freely. (fn. 120)

The Congregationalists have a chapel at Halton, opened in 1898.

Charities

Official inquiries were made into the charities of the parish in 1826 and 1898, and the reports of both were printed in 1899. The educational endowments amount to £82 18s. a year; for the poor are sums of 10s. a year due to Thomas Withers, a former rector, (fn. 121) 4s. due to an unknown donor, (fn. 122) and £10 10s. from money bequeathed by Richard Sparling Berry in 1837 for poor persons meritoriously educating and training their children. These sums are distributed in money gifts to the poor.

Footnotes

1 For parish map see Bolton-le-Sands, post.
1 a 3,921 acres, including 102 of inland water; Census Rep. 1901. A double alteration of the boundary was made in 1900, part of Halton being taken into Lancaster and part of Skerton being added to Halton; Loc. Govt. Bd. Order P 1586.
2 It is now dry. The water used to be brought for use in the font, and was reputed beneficial for sore eyes; Lancs. and Ches, Antiq. Soc. xxi, 89.
3 It now belongs to Ripley's Hospital, Lancaster.
4 The house was built in 1857–8 by Edward Mason of Lancaster (d. 1882). The estate is now owned by Mr. Welch.
5 Mr. Bateman of Halton Park died in 1869, and bequeathed the estate to his wife's nephew John Underwood Champain, who added the name of Bateman to his own and died in 1887. His representatives sold the estate in 1908 to Mr. John George Wright, solicitor, of Lancaster.
6 Formerly known as Penny Bridge; it was rebuilt 1880.
The ferry of Halton is mentioned in 1340; De Banco R. 321, m. 147 d.
7 A Roman altar is preserved at Halton Hall. The crosses are described in V.C.H. Lancs. i, 266; Lancs. and Ches. Antiq. Soc. xxi, 78; and have been cited as illustrating the 'Pagan-Christian Overlap.' A hoard of coins of Canute was found on the moor in 1815; V.C.H. Lancs. i, 259.
8 The rectory-house and glebe seem to have been intact in 1535 according to the Valor Eccl., but were in possession of the Carus family in 1650, and judgement was given in favour of their title in. 1653; Trans. Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xiv, 74. The alienation was probably made in the time of Elizabeth.
9 In addition to cotton mills (1825) by the river there were formerly a corn mill and a bobbin factory; at one time this last was a foundry. Sandstone quarries were worked.
About 1520 coals were dug at Coalpit Hills, near Wigbarrow; Duchy of Lanc. Dep. xxxviii, D 1. 'Wegber' and Coalpit Lot are at the north end of Halton.
9 a Statistics from Bd. of Agric. (1905).
10 Gregson, Fragments (ed. Harland), 23.
11 A huge pudding was baked, and crowds assembled to partake of it. The festival took place at intervals of twentyone years when the willow beds were cut down; the last was in 1886.
12 Dict. Nat. Biog.
13 Pal. Note-bk. i, 113. One of this name was curate of Wyresdale.
14 V.C.H. Lancs. i, 288b.
15 As the forest spread over the county, so to the forester manors were assigned in the north, centre and south—21½ plough-lands in all; Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 43.
16 The earlier descents are uncertain. Various particulars of the family have been given in the accounts of Speke, Whiston, Halsall and other townships. Vivian Gernet, living in the time of Henry I, is the earliest holder of the fee known; he gave Whiston to Robert Travers; ibid. i, 8, 44. Roger Gernet occurs at Cropwell in 1170; Pipe R. Soc. 16 Hen. II, 83. He gave Speke to Richard de Molyneux. Adam Gernet gave land in Halton to Furness Abbey, and this grant was confirmed by his son Benedict about 1200; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxvi, App. 164.
Benedict Gernet obtained from Henry II the privilege of being sued for any tenement held in demesne only before the king or chief justiciar, and this was confirmed by John in 1200; Cal. Rot. Chart. (Rec. Com.), 79. In 1184–5 he had to pay 5 marks for an agreement unlawfully made; Farrer, Lancs. Pipe R. 56, 60. In 1193–4, being involved in the rebellion of John Count of Mortain, he paid £20 for the king's goodwill, so that he might retain the lands and forest he held by inheritance; ibid. 77, 89. In the following years he was deputy sheriff; ibid. 88, 92. On the accession of John in 1199 he proffered 40 marks for having the serjeanty of the forest of the whole county with the king's favour; ibid. 106; Cal. Rot. Chart. loc. cit. He died in or before 1206, when his widow Cecily daughter of Roger de Hutton sought her dower; Farrer, op. cit. 204; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 48. She afterwards married Ellis de Stiveton; Cockersand Chartul. (Chet. Soc.), i, 168–70.
William Gernet, son of Benedict, in 1204–5 proffered 20 marks for a fine, perhaps on succeeding; Farrer, op. cit. 192, 202. In 1206–7 he had owed 100 marks and a palfrey for having the full bailiwick of the forest as his father Benedict had held it; while Roger Gernet his brother owed 60 marks for having the bailiwick his brother had had; ibid. 217, 224. Thus William Gernet held the serjeanty for a year or two only; Close (Rec. Com.), i, 91. His widow Cecily was afterwards married by Philip de Orreby to Hamon de Mascy; ibid, i, 96; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 119. In 1225 she was the wife of William le Villein and was living in 1252; Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 46; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 188. William Gernet, apparently son (but not heir) of William, appears.
17 Ibid. 43. The fee included the following manors: In Lonsdale—Halton, Nether Burrow, Over Burrow and Leek; Amounderness—Fishwick; Leyland— Eccleston; West Derby—Speke, Whiston, Parr and Skelmersdale. Much had been granted out before 1212, but Halton, Fishwick and Eccleston remained to the lords.
18 Ibid. 121. Roger Gernet held one fee in Halton in 1236 for which he did no service to the king beyond keeping ward of the king's forest; ibid. 145.
19 Ibid. 186–8. His widow Quenilda died about the same time; ibid. 189. He had been married to her as early as 1235; Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 63. In 1253 the Halton part appears to have been reckoned the fiftieth part of a knight's fee; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 164. Alienations are recorded ibid. 178, but only three (18, 16 and 30 acres) were in Halton. Sir Roger Gernet released his right in the advowson of Eccleston to St. Martin's, Sées; Lanc. Ch. (Chet. Soc.), i, 28.
20 He paid 40 marks as relief on succee ling in 1252; Excerpta e Rot. Fin. (Rec. Com.), ii, 133. Benedict as son and heir of Roger Gernet in 1253 made an agreement with the Abbot and monks of Furness as to the payment of 26s. a year demanded for their pasture land in Halton; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxvi, App. 164. He was acting as forester in 1257; Lancs. Inq. and Ertents, i, 210. In 1268 he claimed the right to present to Eccleston Church; Lanc. Ch. i, 26.
21 Duchy of Lanc. Anct. D. (P.R.O.), L 1213. It was stated that his grandfather Benedict had held by the service of one knight's fee, which King John while Count of Mortain had changed to forestry. Benedict the grandson surrendered all his customs and liberties in the forests and woods. The seal bears a device resembling a horn, with the legend + s' benedicti gernet.
22 Plac. de Quo Warr. (Rec. Com.), 377.
23 Dugdale, Baronage, ii, 22, citing Pipe R. of 15 Edw. II, Yorks. William was son and heir of Ranulf de Dacre, who died in 1286 holding manors and lands in Over Kellet, (Bare) and Heysham; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 263. The last-named manor descended independently. Joan widow of Ranulf de Dacre occurs in 1292; Assize R. 408, m. 39.
24 Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 298. In 1302 William de Dacre held a knight's fee of the earl (formerly of the king, for forestry) for the fourth part of a knight's fee; ibid. 317.
25 Chart. R. 97 (32 Edw. I), m. 4, no. 62; the grant was for his demesne lands of Halton.
He and Joan his wife in 1311 made a settlement of the manors of Halton, Fishwick and Eccleston, the remainder being to the right heirs of Joan; Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 7. Joan survived her husband and died in 1324 holding the three manors named, and leaving as heir a son Ranulf de Dacre, then thirty years of age. At Halton there was a capital messuage, worth nothing because it had been burnt by the Scots. There were 80 acres of arable land, worth 53s. 4d., and 12 acres of meadow, worth 12s.; two water-mills, farmed at £4 a year, and a fishery rendering 13s. 4d. The free tenants held 12 oxgangs of land, rendering 5s. for each; the total rent of the cottages was only 2s.; Inq. p.m. 18 Edw. II, no. 41.
In 1328 Ranulf de Dacre and Margaret his wife settled the manors of Halton, Kellet, Fishwick and Eccleston, and land in Poulton, with remainders to their sons William, Thomas and Ranulf; Final Conc. ii, 67–9.
The eldest son succeeded, and in 1346 Sir William de Dacre held three ploughlands in Halton and Aughton by the serjeanty of being forester and paying £6 9s. 4d., of which 3s. 4d. was for a pasture called Shiderorde, lately Roger Hexham's; Surv. of 1346 (Chet. Soc.), 62. Sir William died in July 1361, and his brother Ranulf, then rector of Prescot, succeeded; Inq. p.m. 35 Edw. III (pt. i), no. 63. His mother Margaret, widow of Ranulf, died in the following December, but had nothing in Halton; ibid. 36 Edw. III (pt. i), no. 62. Ranulf de Dacre, the heir, died in Aug. 1375 holding the manors of Halton and Fishwick and the moiety of Eccleston of the Duke of Lancaster by the rent of £6 9s. 4d. and other lands, &c. The heir was his brother Sir Hugh de Dacre, aged forty and more; ibid. 49 Edw. Ill (pt. i), no. 39.
Ranulf de Dacre complained in 1368 that his trees at Halton had been felled, and in 1375 that his house there had been set on fire; De Banco R. 431, m. 273; 457, m. 10.
26 For an account of the family see G.E.C. Complete Peerage, iii, 1–9. The following is an outline of the descent: Ranulf de Dacre (of Gillesland, in right of his wife) summoned to Parliament as Lord Dacre in 1321; d. 1339 -s. William, d. 1361 -bro. Ranulf, d. 1375 -bro. Hugh, d. 1383 -s.William, d. 1398 -s. Thomas, d. 1458 -gd-da. Joan (da. of Sir Thomas) wife of Sir Richard Fiennes, summoned as Lord Dacre in 1458 and later; she d. 1486. The heir male claimed the estates and in Lancashire Halton was in 1473 allowed to him, while Fishwick and Eccleston went to Joan and her issue. Her descendants were the Lords Dacre of the South. See Cal. Pat. 1461–7, pp. 140, 534.
Her uncle Ralph Dacre (son of Thomas, who d. 1458) was summoned to Parliament as Lord Dacre of Gillesland in 1459, but was killed at Towton in 1461 and was afterwards attainted. His brother Humphrey, attainted at the same time, was restored in 1473, and soon afterwards, as above stated, Halton was allowed to him, with the great bulk of the Dacre inheritance, on an arbitration by the king. He was summoned as Lord Dacre of Gillesland, and d. 1485 -s. Thomas, d. 1525 -s.William, d. 1563 -s. Thomas, d. 1566 -s. George, d. 1569. These were the Lords Dacre of the North. The heirs of George were his sisters—Anne, who married in 1571 Philip Howard Earl of Arundel; Mary, who married Thomas Howard; Elizabeth, who married William Howard. The husbands were sons of Thomas Duke of Norfolk, who was beheaded in 1572.
27 Hugh de Dacre lord of Gillesland in 1378–9 demised to Robert de Pleasington the manors of Halton and Eccleston; Close, 2 Ric. II, m. 17d.
Sir Thomas Dacre Lord Dacre of Gillesland died (as above stated) in. 1458, having settled the manors of Fishwick and Bradley (in Eccleston) on his younger son Humphrey for life, with reversion to the heir male, and then to Thomas Clifford son of Joan daughter of Lord Dacre. The manor of Halton and lands in Aughton, Caton and Bare, with others in Highfield and Sidegarth in Aughton, a tenement called Shinbone place, lands by the Stub and the advowson of Halton Church, were to go to Ralph, another son of Lord Dacre, for life, with reversion to the heir male. This manor with its lands was held of the king as of his duchy in socage by a rent of £6 12s. 8d. Ralph (or Ranulf) was the heir male in 1458 and was thirty-five years of age; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 65. For the Halton settlement referred to see Close, 18 Hen. VI, m. 30; also 17 Hen. VI, m. 16.
The award in favour of Sir Humphrey Dacre in 1473 is in Parl. R. vi, 43. A previous grant (1462) was in favour of Joan and Sir Richard Fiennes; Cal. Pat. 1461–7, pp. 140, 534. The will of Mabel widow of Humphrey is in N. and Q. (Ser. 8), iv, 382. Thomas Lord Dacre was in 1498 called upon to prove his right to free warren in Halton; Pal. of Lanc. Writs, 13 Hen. VII.
The manor and advowson of Halton, with lands in Aughton, Highfield, Haringhursr, Halton Park Green, Sidegarth and Stub, were in 1566 secured by Ellen Stanley, dowager Lady Mounteagle, and Lawrence Banastre against Thomas Lord Dacre of Gillesland; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 28, m. 275.
28 From an account of the manor by Mr. W. O. Roper in Trans. Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xiv, 69, in which article this and other documents are printed in full. The customs of the manor as agreed upon in 1634 are printed ibid. 73; see also Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 286.
29 Roper, op. cit. 68; many names are given. The bounds do not agree exactly with those of the existing township. A further agreement as to the northern boundary was made with Lord Mounteagle; ibid. 70.
About 1539–40 there had been disputes about the boundaries between Halton and Nether Kellet. Hernacre, Ellerbarrow, Wigbarrow, Cromeberry Moss and Pikethorn were said to be within Halton. The lords of Nether Kellet had paid 6d. a year to the ancestors of Lord Dacre for the 'knitting' of the water-course running to Donnell mill. A book of accounts was produced, dated 14 and 20 Hen. VI (1435–42), showing the payment as a 'new farm' for the licence to make the attachment', Duchy of Lanc. Dep. xxxviii, D 1.
30 Roper, ut sup.; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 46, m. 116. The vendors undertook to warrant against William Lord Howard and Elizabeth his wife and the heirs of William Lord Dacre deceased. In the following year the purchasers sold two barns, &c., in Heysham to Robert Bindloss; ibid. bdle. 47, m. 130. Bindloss was afterwards said to hold of the queen as of her manor of East Greenwich; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xvii, no. 6, The tenure may denote that he held church lands.
31 Heysham is later found at Highfield and Wolfall at Aughton.
32 In 1592 an inquiry was made as to the title of Leonard Dacre of Naworth, heir male, in the manor of Halton. It was stated that Christopher Carus had been in possession from Martinmas 1584; Chan. Inq. p.m. (Ser. 2), ccxxx, 34, of 34 Eliz.
The new lord of the manor was third son of Thomas Carus, a justice of the Queen's Bench from 1565 till his death about 1572; Dict. Nar. Biog.; Visit, of 1567 (Chet. Soc), 60.
33 English Martyrs (Cath. Rec. Soc.), i, 70; 'Carne' in error.
34 In 1630 Christopher Carus of Halton compounded for the two-thirds of his estates liable to sequestration for recusancy, paying £10 a year fine; Trans. Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xxiv, 175.
35 Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxvii, no. 75.
36 Commonw. Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 130.
37 Dugdale, Visit.
38 Royalist Comp. Papers (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 5–14. It was alleged that some of the estate had been sequestered for the 'popery and delinquency' of the elder Thomas. The acting rector of Halton (Thomas Whitehead) had been placed in possession. It was also stated that 'Halton Hall and the lands belonging to it' were an impropriation.
In 1654 Thomas Carus the elder, Thomas Carus the younger and Mary his wife made a settlement of the manor of Halton, the advowson of the church, &c.; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 153, m. 183.
39 Dugdale, Visit. (Chet. Soc.), 69.
40 Thomas Carus was buried at Whittington 10 Sept. 1677.
41 Cal. S. P. Dom. 1690–1, p. 23.
42 Lancs. Memorials of 1715 (Chet Soc.), 84–5. It does not appear that they went on with the force or took any part in the fighting. There was no forfeiture of their estates.
George Carus of Lancaster and Frances Carus, widow, as 'Papists' registered annuities out of the manor of Halton, &c, in 1717; Estcourt and Payne, Engl. Cath. Nonjurors, 144.
George Carus, younger son of Thomas Carus of Halton, sold his annuity in 1720 to James Fenton, vicar of Lancaster; Piccope MSS. (Chet. Lib.), iii, 208, from 1st 5th R. of Geo. I at Preston. For a dispute as to the annuity in 1701 see Cal. of Exch. of Pleas, H 18.
43 In 1692 Christopher Carus was tenant of the manor and advowson of Halton, and Thomas Carus and another were vouchees in a recovery; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 455, m. 3. In 1712 William Birdsworth obtained the manor and advowson from Thomas Carus, Thomas his son and heir-apparent and others (probably trustees or mortgagees); Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 268, m. 2. The advowson was sold soon afterwards, and the manor only appears in a fine of 1741, when the plaintiff was William Dickinson and the deforciants were Thomas Carus, Bridget his wife and Wilson his son and heir-apparent; ibid, bdle. 327, m. 44.
The pedigree—Christopher Carus (d. 1694) -s. Thomas (d. 1716) -s. Thomas —is shown in a deed of 1724 in Piccope MSS. iii, 208.
Thomas Carus the son is said to have lived till 1763, being buried at Halton. He left four sons and three daughters.
44 Misc. (Cath. Rec. Soc), v, 243, from the Tyldesley Diary. The 'Papist' family recorded at Halton in 1717 by Bishop Gastrell was no doubt that of Carus; Notitia Cestr. ii, 552.
45 The account of the recent descent of the manor is chiefly from Baines, Lancs. (ed. 1870), ii, 608, where it is stated that 'a customary tenant cannot alienate his tenement either by sale or mortgage without the consent of the lord, and fines are payable on death or alienation, and also on change of the lord. Heriots, too, are claimed by the lord on death.'
46 The hall and fishery were purchased in 1887, the manor being reserved, but in 1894 this also was purchased; information of Mr. Sharpe.
47 Information of Mr. J. G. Wright.
47 a Roper, Churches, Castles and Anct. Halls of North Lancs. 34. Raines describes it as a plain spacious mansion with a centre and two wings.
48 Some alienations and free tenancies have been mentioned. Margery del Beck (or Brock) in 1247–51 was to pay the lord of Lancaster 3s. 4d. a year for 16 acres alienated to her; and Roger Gernet, then lord of Halton, was also to pay 3s. 4d. for 30 acres and perform service due from the fiftieth part of a knight's fee, having agreed with the occupiers, Alan de la More and Richard his brother; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 178–80. The former land was at Halton Green, for in 1297 B. del Green held it, paying the earl 3s. 4d.; ibid. 295. Thomas de Farleton held the same in 1346; Survey (Chet. Soc), 72.
Geoffrey son of Adam de Bolton about 1280 released to Earl Edmund his right in a moss in 'Holton' called Braythemire; Great Couch, i, fol. 77, no. 71.
William de Mascy and Ellen his wife had land in Halton in 1376–7; Final Conc, ii, 191; iii, 4.
49 Benedict Gernet (before 1206) gave 2 oxgangs of land to Guy de Stub to be held by knight's service—viz. by the eighty-fourth part of a knight's fee; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 44. Benedict de Stub, Ellen his wife and Margery daughter of Robert del Childers were in 1292 concerned in disputes as to land and meadow in Halton; Assize R. 408, m. 7, 46. It appears that Alice the daughter of Benedict married Robert del Culdres (or Childers) and her son Adam was claimant. The jury decided in his favour, though Benedict de Stub alleged that his mother Edusa had given one part of the land claimed to Alice for her life, and that Roger Gernet had given the remainder to Alice for life while he had the custody of Benedict; ibid. 34.
The manors of Over Kellet and Stub, with messuage and land in Halton, were the right of Sir John de Nevill in 1376; Final Conc, ii, 191.
Land in Caton and Stub was afterwards held by Harrington and Curwen; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet. Soc), ii, 66.
50 Some grants have been mentioned. Roger Gernet gave Furness the culture called Benetacres with pasture for 500 sheep. The bounds went from Stralous (Strellas) down to the old pool in Mabandale, up north to the monks' acres, and then west to Staplethorne acres; Add. MS. 33244, fol. 60. Probably the same Roger (R.) allowed the monks to make bridges, paved roads and other easements, and promised that the ditch which his brother Vivian had made should be levelled. He also promised that he and his heirs would not use 'kidels' or nets for taking small fish to the detriment of the monks' fishery lower down the Lune, and that they would not raise the millpool or the road to it higher than it was in 11 Henry . . .; ibid. fol. 60b. The chartulary contains further agreements with Ranulf de Dacre in 1327, William de Dacre, undated, and Ranulf de Dacre in 1367; fol. 62–3.
William Prior of Cartmel in 1441 claimed two 'dacre' of cowhides from Roger Pye of Halton 5 Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 3, m. 21. It does not appear that the priory had any land in Halton.
51 Pat. 6 Eliz. pt. iii; this chantry is otherwise unknown. The purchaser appears at Grangegarth in Whittington.
Richard Curwen died in 1598 holding a messuage, &c., in Halton of the queen as of her honour of Lancaster by knight's service and a rent of 2s. 3¾d. William his son and heir was five years old; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xvii, no. 55.
52 Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 230.
53 William Bland of Halton Park occurs in 1613; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 245.
54 James Thornton died in 1598 holding a messuage, &c., of the queen as of her honour of Lancaster by knight's service and rent. His heir was his son William, aged twenty-nine; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xvii, no. 30. William Thornton of Halton Park was living in 1616; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc), ii, 27.
55 Edmund Barwick of Highfield in 1631 paid £10 on refusing knighthood; Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 221.
Thomas Barwick and Edward Winder of Highfield occur in 1615; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc), ii, 15.
56 Robert Burton died in 1638 holding a messuage in Over Highfield of the king, and leaving as heir his grandson and namesake (son of his son Richard), aged five; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxvii, no. 49. The younger Robert Burton is probably the founder of Aughton School.
57 George Brickett, clerk, had a dispute with Nicholas Heysham and others respecting a messuage and land in the hamlet of Aughton in 1599; Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), iii, 412.
John son of William Heysham died in 1613 holding land in Over Highfield of the king by the fortieth part of a knight's fee and 3s. 9d. rent. Richard, his son and heir, was eighteen years old; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc.), i, 263.
Daniel Heysham in 1635 held a messuage and 10 acres in Halton of the king by the grand serjeanty of being forester. He died in that year and left a son and heir John, aged eight; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxvii, no. 23.
William Heysham (late of Skerton) died in 1637 holding land in Halton by knight's service. His heir was his sister Helen wife of Edmund Tockim, and fifty years of age; Towneley MS. C 8, 13 (Chet. Lib.), 515.
58 Ducatus Lanc, iii, 300. It was held by Robert Bindloss, Nicholas Curwen, Edward Croft, James Barwick and others, and was claimed in right of Nicholas Thornburgh.
59 Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc), ii, 90; his son and heir John was thirteen years old in 1623.
60 Ibid, i, 50; ii, 90; it was held of the king by the sixtieth part of a knight's fee.
61 Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 56.
62 The list of wills preserved has been printed by the Rec. Soc. for Lancs. and Ches. xxiii.
63 In 1252 the church of St. Wilfrid of Halton was found to be endowed with one plough-land out of the three in the vill; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 187.
64 Foundation stone laid 3 Aug. 1876; consecrated 8 Oct. 1877. The architects were Paley & Austin of Lancaster.
65 In depositions of 31 Hen. VIII (Duchy of Lanc. Dep. xxxviii, D 1) a witness stated that 'the tenants of Halton dug stones on the said moor [top of Halton Moor] towards the building of Halton steeple.'
66 The windows formerly contained arms of the Dacres and others; Whitaker, Richmondshire, ii, 241.
67 They are described briefly in V.C.H. Lancs. i, 267, and at greater length, with illustrations, in Taylor, Anct. Crosses and Holy Wells of Lancs. 379–81.
68 V.C.H. Lancs. i, 266. See also Trans. Cumb. and Westmld. Antiq. and Arch. Soc. 1899, and Taylor, op. cit. 370–9.
69 About 6 ft. of the shaft of the cross was knocked off in 1635 to provide a pedestal for the sundial. The stump left was a little over 4 ft. in height.
70 The visitation papers at Chester Dioc. Reg. show that in 1701 the church had 'a decent font, communion table, carpet, a flagon and two chalices . . . . and all things else are as is required.' There were register books— transcripts being sent yearly—and a book for churchwardens' accounts. There was a parish chest with three locks.
71 See the list of rectors.
72 The next presentations seem to have been sold several times, but the advowson was still held by the Carus family, lords of the manor, in 1712; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 268, m. 2. Bishop Gastrell about 1717 names the patron as 'Mr. Carus, a Papist'; Notitia Cestr. (Chet. Soc), ii, 552. The advowson seems to have been sold about that time. 'In 1715 (it) became the property of Thomas Backhouse, who conveyed it to John Copley in 1718, who conveyed it to Christopher Wetherherd in 1720, whose descendant (the Rev. Christopher Wetherherd) conveyed it to the devisees for the uses of Mr. Bradshaw's will in the year 1778'; Baines, Lancs. (ed. 1870), ii, 609. About 1830 it was purchased by trustees for John Thompson of Liverpool and Holme Island, who disposed of it by auction in 1848 for £6,350. It was advertised for sale in 1851, and was soon afterwards (1854) purchased by John Hastings of Downpatrick, who died in 1868, having bequeathed it to his son Samuel, who became rector in 1870.
73 Pope Nick. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 307, 327.
74 Inq. Nonarum (Rec. Com.), 35. The diminution was accounted for by the omission of the glebe, 40s.; small tithes and altarage, 52s. 9d.; and by the destruction made by the Scots, £4.
75 Duchy of Lanc. Rentals and Surv. bdle. 5, no. 15.
76 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 267. The rectory-house and demesne lands therewith were valued at £6 13s. 4d. a year; tithes of corn, £10; other tithes, £2 8s. 8d.; the Easter book, £1 1s. 8d. Out of this synodals and procurations had to be paid—3s. 2d.
77 Commonw. Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 131. For this suit see Roper in Trans, Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xiv, 74.
78 Gastrell, Notitia (Chet. Soc), ii, 552. The corn tithes then amounted to £40, other tithes £7 16s. 8d.; quitrents, £6 13s. 4d.; Easter dues and surplice fees, £5 10s. Dues of £2 2s. 3d. had to be paid. There were two churchwardens.
79 Manch. Dtoc. Dir.
80 B. Gernet attested, in the second place, an agreement with the chaplain of St, Michael-on-Wyre made between 1194 and 1199; Farrer, Lancs. Pipe R. 338. Benedict rector of Halton occurs in 1204 in one of the Brockholes of Claughton D. The seal of Benedict rector of Halton is affixed to a grant of 4 acres of meadow on the north side of Nithinghou by Benedict son of Adam Gernet to Furness Abbey, intended to secure the payment of 1 lb. of wax at Easter to Halton Church; Duchy of Lanc. Anct. D. (P.R.O.), L. 357. In 1296 it was alleged that Benedict Gernet, rector in the time of Richard I, had alienated certain church land to the abbey; De Banco R. 115, m. 176 d.
81 B.M. Charters, Harl. 52 I, 1, printed in Beck's Annales Furn. lxxix.
82 Rector of Halton and Dean of Lancaster; Lanc. Ch. (Chet. Soc), ii, 431; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxvi, App. 164.
83 Also rector of Prescot (q.v.). He was rector of Halton in 1296, when he claimed land from the Abbot of Furness in a pleading quoted above. The abbot said the tenement was in Beaumont and not in Halton; De Banco R. 115, m. 176 d.; 122, m. III d. In 1298 he made an agreement with the Prior of Lancaster as to the tithes of Beaumont; Lanc. Ch. ii, 334. He occurs again as rector in 1301, 1303 and 1304; De Banco R. 135, m. 75; 148, m. 19d.; Coram Rege R. 178, m. 59 d.
84 Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 50; De Banco R. 251, m. 94; Cal. Pat. 1324–7, p. 148 (protection, 1325). See the account of Claughton in Garstang. This rector was custodian of the forfeited estates of Thomas Earl of Lancaster; Memo. R. (L.T.R.) 88, m. 102 d. He was still rector in 1329; De Banco R. 279, m. 164. It is possible that his successor was Ranulf de Dacre (rector of Prescot 1346–75), but the only authority known is an erroneous entry on a pedigree in Harl. MS. 891, fol. 54.
85 Duchy of Lanc. Assize R. 2, m. 11; 8, m. 8; De Banco R. 412, m. 226.
86 De Banco R. 463, m. 67; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 1, m. 21; B.M. Add. Chart. 8450, 8499, dated 1383. In the same year he gave security that he would not in future take any ' kypres' in the Lune; Pal. of Lanc. Docquet R. 1–15 John of Gaunt, no. 1. One of the executors of the will of Richard Mascy of Sale in Cheshire, 1407, was Thomas de Huyton, rector of Halton in Lonsdale; note by Mr. Earwaker.
87 Leave of absence was granted him in 1419; Raines MSS. (Chet. Lib.), xxii, 395. He is mentioned again in 1429; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 2, m. 7. Richard Garth was a feoffee of Sir Thomas Dacre in 1439–40; Close, 18 Hen. VI, m. 30; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet, Soc), ii, 65.
88 Southworth had been vicar of Boltonle-Sands in 1448; perhaps he exchanged with Garth, unless there were two of the latter name. In 1476 William Croft (probably of Claughton) bequeathed his 'portiferum' to Edward Southworth, rector of the church of Halton; will proved at Richmond. In 1481 a number of persons were charged with taking salmon called kippers in the Lune at Halton; they included Edmund Southworth, the rector of Halton, and John Stub, chaplain; Pal. of Lanc Writs Prothon. file 21, Edw. IV a. Edmund Southworth the rector and William Southworth were the feoffees of John son and heir of Gilbert Curwen of Caton in 1485; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 60, m. 1. This rector was Dean of Lonsdale and Kendal in 1488. He occurs again in 1491; Pal. of Lanc. Writs Prothon. Hil. 6 Hen. VII.
89 In depositions made in 1533 Christopher Cansfield is mentioned as having been rector of Halton twenty years previously; Duchy Plead. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 225.
90 Duchy of Lanc. Rentals and Surv. bdle. 5, no. 15; he was Prior of Lanercost, and had been rector for seven years in 1527. He remained Prior of Lanercost till the Suppression; V.C.H. Cumb. ii, 160–1. In 1535 he is recorded at Halton and the priory; Valor Eccl. v, 267, 277.
91 The Church Papers at Chester Dioc Reg. are the authority for the list of rectors to 1840, unless otherwise stated. In some cases the date given is that of presentation.
Mr. Rowland Threlkeld appeared at the visitations of 1548 and 1554, and by proxy in 1562. He was rector of Melmerby 1526–65, and held Dufton also in 1535; Hutchinson, Cumberland, i, 219; Valor Eccl. v, 289, 295.
An account of the church goods in 1552 has been preserved; Chet. Misc. (new ser.), i, 13.
92 He had been curate of Halton, appearing at the visitations 1548–62. His deprivation was probably due to his being unable to conform to the newly-established religion any longer. As late as 1590–3 a government informer returned the following curious note concerning him: 'There is one old Sir William Battie who was once the vicar of Houghton (sic) in Lancashire, who was reported to be dead long ago, and now is living and secretly kept and sayeth many masses'; English Martyrs (Cath. Rec. Soc), i, 181, 222.
93 He was nephew of the patron and Tector of Windermere; West, Furness (ed. Close), 337. He was 'a preacher'; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 7.
94 The Inst. Bks. (P.R.O.) begin with this rector; the names are printed in Lancs. and Chts. Antiq. Notes, and have been used to supplement the Chester Registry Papers.
Daniel Meyre was presented to Whittington in 1630. Two of hit sons entered St. John's Coll., Camb.
95 The first presentation was on 20 Nov. 1630 by Henry Parker as patron; the second on 27 Dec. 1634 by the king, 'by lapse of time or otherwise.'
This is probably the Richard Jackson who followed Meyre at Whittington in 1641. He was educated at Christ's Coll., Camb.; M.A. 1626.
96 He was 'a godly minister settled there by the Parliament'; Royalist Comp. Papers (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 14. It is not known when he was placed there, but he appears in the registers in 1644 and was a member of the clasis in 1646 as 'of Halton,' though he did not pay first-fruits till 23 June 1648; Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 414. In that year he signed the 'Harmonious Consent' as 'pastor at Halton.' He was still there in 1652, when he had an encounter with George Fox (Journ. ed. 1765, p. 74), and onwards to 1659; Plund. Mins. Accts. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 40, 182, 297. It seems clear that he forfeited Halton on the Restoration as having no legal title. According to Calamy, he afterwards ministered to the Nonconformists in the neighbourhood, probably at Kellet, and died in 1679; Nonconf. Mem. (ed. Palmer), ii, 89 (Dalton for Halton); O. Heywood, Diaries, ii, 139.
97 The presentation was dated 9 June 1654, but the cause of vacancy is not given.
An Edward Lawrence of Ellel entered St. John's Coll., Camb., in 1649; Mayor, Admissions, i, 91.
98 Educated at Brasenose Coll., Oxf., and became fellow of Corpus Christi; M.A. 1665, B.D. 1678; Foster, Alumni. He was buried at Preston 19 Oct. 1676; T. Smith, Preston Ch. 228. For pedigree (showing that he was grandson of Thomas Butler of Kirkland) sec Fishwick, Preston, 279.
In the visitation list of 1674 one Thomas Fowler appears as 'rector,' but he was buried at Halton in 1677 as 'curate.'
99 In 1676 a caveat was sent to the Bishop of Chester warning him not to admit anyone to the rectory except on the nomination of Thomas Carus of West Hall, patron, and Thomas Butler of Kirkland. Rector Withers was 'conformable' in 1689; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 229. He was educated at St. John's Coll., Camb.; M.A. (as Wither) 1666; Mayor, Admissions, i, 138. He was a benefactor of the school and the poor of Halton.
100 He was also vicar of Thorpe Arch, York; the patron for that turn was his brother. He was educated at Christ's Coll., Camb.; B.A. 1721.
101 The patron was son of the late rector, and George Wilson resigned as soon as a member of the patron's family was ready to take the rectory. He was educated at St. John's Coll, Camb.; M.A. 1732; Scott, Admissions, iii, 45, 385.
102 He was a son of the former rector of the same name and educated at Jesus Coll., Camb.; M.A. 1776.
103 He was born at Highfield and educated at St. John's Coll., Camb.; B.A. 1756; Scott, Admissions, iii, 138, 616. He held the curacy of Over Kellet 1761–95.
104 He was also curate of Over Kellet 1795–1825 and a county magistrate. He at one time resided at Scale Hall, Skerton, there being no rectory-house at Halton, and afterwards at Swarthdale House, Over Kellet, where he died.
105 Of St. Peter's Coll., Camb. He was appointed Hon. Canon of Manchester in 1854. He wrote a Churchwarden's Manual. The D.D. degree was granted him by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
106 Educated at Trinity Coll., Dublin; M.A. 1865. He was vicar of Fleetwood 1868–70. In 1889 he became perpetual curate of Aughton, thus reuniting the curacy to the rectory.
107 Educated at Emmanuel Coll., Camb.; B.A. 1882. Now vicar of Belmont, near Bolton.
108 Educated at Magdalen Coll., Oxf.; M.A. 1903. Mr. Hastings has afforded the editors information on several points.
109 Visit. Papers at Chester Dioc. Reg. In 1709 he celebrated the Lord's Supper at least four times in the year; in 1712 he bade holy days and fasting days. There was 'one Roman Catholic family.'
110 Trans. Hist. Soc. (new ser.), xiv, 69. In 1585 it was reponed that there was a chapel at Halton Green called the Hermitage with a close adjoining, formerly in the possession of a priest named Robert Taylor. A rent of 6s. 8d. was paid to Lord Dacre of the North; Duchy of Lanc. Special Com. 360.
The house now called the Hermitage at the Crook of Lune was built in 1849 by John Sharp on a field so named; Hastings, Annals of Halton, 31.
111 Commonw. Ch. Surv. 131. There was no minister, and the commissioners recommended that the parish church should be removed to a more central position or else that Aughton should be annexed to Gressingham.
112 Robert Burton of Lancaster in 1697 bequeathed all his lands in the parish of Halton—he had some in Over Highneld —to trustees for his wife Hester for life and then to the use of the curate of Aughton Chapel, who was also to 'undertake the office of schoolmaster in the said chapel without demanding any salary from the youths.' The appointment of the curate-schoolmaster was to rest with the rector of Halton and the vicar of Lancaster.
113 Gastrell, Notitia Cestr. ii, 554. The visit, papers at Chester show that in 1715 'the chapel had been lately rebuilt and (was) as yet not finished,' while in 1717 some of the inhabitants were presented for pulling the chapel down without licence from the Bishop of Chester.
114 Gastrell, loc. cit.
115 The curate of Aughton about 1727 served Claughton Church also.
116 In 1789 he became vicar of Warton, and died in 1799.
117 He resigned in 1889, and died in 1905; Cross Fleury's Journal (Lancaster), Feb. 1905.
118 Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 124.
119 Thomas Withers, the founder, was rector 1677 to 1706; he bought lands and gave them to trustees for the use of the schoolmaster and the poor. It is not clear that any schoolhouse was built then. The original lands were called Walker's land, Strellars and Strellars meadow, but exchanges were made, and part has been sold.
120 See End. Char. Rep. for Haltonwith-Aughton.
121 This sum is paid out of the school endowment.
122 This is a rent-charge on land in Gressingham.
Some other gifts are mentioned in the report, but they had failed or perhaps had never become effective. One was an alleged bequest by William Greenbank in 1750; he was reported to have given lands for the poor of Halton, but no record could in 1826 be found of any will or deed.