The Church and Gild here were dedicated to the Blessed Virgin; it
was a rectory (fn. 1) appropriated by John of Oxford, Bishop of Norwich,
to Butley priory, (fn. 2) who were patrons, it being given them by King
Henry I at their founder's request, before he gave the manor to the
Fitz-Walters. In 1293, their temporals were taxed at 26s 6d. and
their spirituals at 17l. 6s. 8d. The impropriation was confirmed by
the archbishop, and the vicar had a pension of 26s. 8d. payable by
the prior, out of the great tithes, all which were afterwards disappropriated, by the prior and convent's resigning up the church and
tithes, and presenting a rector. In 1510, upon Drayles's institution,
a pension of 40s. per annum was reserved to the prior out of the rectory. The lands that belonged to the priory were granted by Queen
Elizabeth to different persons, some to Edward Dyer, Hugh Cressiner,
|King's Books.||Tenths.||Synodals.||Archd. Procur.||Acres Glebe.|
Rectors and Vicars.
Wybart, rector: sans date.
1299, 2 kal. Mar. The rectory was void, and a sequestration
granted to Adam de Cokefield, (fn. 3) who was presented to it, with this
clause, that the bishop might recall it when he pleased.
1304, 5 ides June, Richard de Schadenfield, priest, was instituted to
the vicarage, with certain portions newly assigned by the Bishop, at
the presentation of the Prior of Butley, who presented the following
1314, 11 kal. July, Alan de Bedyngtone, priest.
1325, 15 kal. July, Robert, called Baldewyne, priest. He resigned in
1331, id. Dec. and Richard de Botone, priest, succeeded.
1349, 2 July, Walter Stannard de Diss, priest.
1349, 28 July, John Mortimer, priest.
1351, 14 Octob. Robert Mast of West Lexham, priest.
1401, 22 Jan. John Cok, priest.
1408, 9 Septem. Richard Bailly, priest.
1424, 26 June, William Balle, priest.
1432, 2 Dec. William Smythe, by lapse; and the year following the
16th of April, the prior resigned the impropriation; and in
1433, (fn. 4) 18 Apr. Robert Syre, priest, was instituted to the rectory,
saving to William Smyth his right as vicar; Syre held the rectory
single to 1436, and then resigned, and the prior presented Smyth to
the rectory, from which time it hath continued a rectory to this day.
The prior presented the following rectors:
Richard Goneld, who resigned in
1453, 20 Dec. and Adam Bulman succeeded.
1457, 24 Mar. John Bukke, chaplain.
1466, 1 May, William Keene, (fn. 5) at Bukk's death.
John Drayles succeeded, on whose death, in
1510, 31 Aug. Walter Terald, or Tirrell, was instituted; on his
1546, 20 Aug. Ralph Pyllyng, chaplain, was presented by Thomas
Mildmay, Esq. one of the King's Auditors, who had this turn from
Nicholas Arrowsmith, Esq. who had it by grant from the prior,
before the house was dissolved.
1550, 24 May, John Deane, (fn. 6) or Deen, priest, presented by King
Edward VI. from which time the following rectors have been presented by the Crown, in which the patronage now remains.
1564, 27 May, John Hilton, priest.
1589, 21 May, Henry Wiseman; he died, and
1626, 12 March, Hugh More, A. M. was instituted, being ordained
priest this year, Jan. 12, by Theophilus Bishop of Llandaff; he subscribed Aug. 16, 1662, having held it the whole time of the rebellion.
1674, 9 May, John Rand, A. B.
1706, 9 May, the Rev. Mr. Joseph Henchman, the present 
rector, at Mr. Rand's death.
The Church is small, and is leaded; the south porch and chancel
are tiled; the steeple is round at bottom, and octangular at top,
having five bells, on one of which is this:
Quœsumus, Andrea, Famulorum suscipe vota.
Here are no memorials, save a black marble in the church, for
"Francis Alpe, Gent, who died July the 15th, 1670, aged 86 years."
And in the yard, at the east end of the chancel, a grave-post much
"Hugh Moore, late Rector;" by which it appears that he was a
Scotchman, though it is now almost illegible.
In 1475, Reginald Smethe, chaplain, was buried in this church,
and gave 40s. to peynte a candle beme therein. (fn. 7)
Burston at first (fn. 8) was in three parts, though the whole was held of
Robert Mallet, lord of the honour of Eye, successour of Edric, under
whom Aculf, a freeman, had one part in the Confessor's time, which
in the Conqueror's was held by Walter, who now had another part,
which Moithar held in King Edward's days. The third part was
Leofric of Torendun's, which the Conqueror gave to his Queen, she to
Robert Mallet, and he to his mother, who now had it: the whole
town then was two miles long, and one mile broad, and paid 12d. to
These parcels soon after became two manors, one called Brockdish
Hall, from a family of that name; the other Meauling's Hall, from
Peter de Meauling, or Melding, lord thereof, and now by corruption
Milding Hall, both being always held of Eye honour.
The manor of Brockdish Hall
Was given by King Henry I. to the Fitz-Walters, from whom it went
very early to
Geffry de Brokedish, from him to his son
William, who left it to
Thomas, his son; and he to
Reginald; and he to his son,
Sir Stephen de Brokedysh, whose heir enjoyed it in 1327.
This Stephen purchased lands to this manor, of Ernold de Monteney,
and had view of frankpledge allowed him in 1286, and assize of bread
Stephen, son and heir of Sir Stephen, purchased divers lands and
tenements, to be held at 10s. per annum rent, lying in Burston,
Thelveton, and Brisingham, to be held of Hugh de Vere, and Dionise
his wife; Gilbert Prior of Butley gave him 3 acres of land for life, (fn. 9)
parcel of that land which Alfwet Cnot, and William, son of Edmer,
gave to that convent, viz. the whole tenement that Wybart, the
parson of Burston, held of them and their ancestors anno 1307; he
Reginald his son and heir. In 1380, William Ufford Earl of
Suffolk, as lord of Eye honour, claimed the fines and amerciaments
of his tenants in Burston and elsewhere, in the half hundred of Diss,
where Walter le Fitz-Wauter of Wodeham was lord, as being the
capital lord of whom this manor was held. I cannot find how it went
from the Brockdish family; but it was in the
Boylands, from whom it passed by Maud, the heiress of that
John Lancaster of Brisingham, and went (fn. 10) as Boyland Hall, till
about 1500, when it was aliened to
Sir John Sharpe, Knt. who, in 1514, obtained license to alien
Will. Tyler, or Tylot, and his heirs, to be held as formerly,
by the service of a red rose yearly, payable to the Duke of Suffolk,
to his honour of Eye. In 1518, this Sir John Sharpe, Kt. and Wm.
Tyler, Knt. &c. lords of Brockdish Hall, and John Millegate, Prior
of the priory of the holy Virgin, and St. James the Apostle of Old
Bokenham, and the convent there, lords of the manor of Meldynghall,
agreed to divide the two manors, which having for a long time been
farmed together, were now so intermixed, that they knew not their
separate rights; wherefore they got two books in indented bindings,
the one having the convent seal affixed thereto, and the other the
seals of the two knights, &c. in these the division was entered, and
the one was delivered to the prior, and the other to Sir John Sharpe,
&c. which is now among the evidences of the manor, from which I
collected, that Meldyng Hall abuts on Knot's Lane north; the demeans were about 137 acres, copyhold held of it 439 acres, the quitrents about 18l. per annum. Brokedysh Hall abuts upon Northgate
Green north, and was then, with 13 acres adjoining, copyhold; this
manor was about half the value of Meldyng Hall, John Mellegate,
prior, Tho. Beverly, sub-prior, and Tho. Browne, sacrist, signed it.
Brockdish Hall paid then 10s. per annum freerent to Winfarthing:
it appears that
Robert Browne was cousin and heir to Sir John Sharpe, from
whom it came to the
Pettuses, and from them to Bolton, and from Bolton to
Thomas Proctor, senior, clerk, whose kinswoman and heiress
John Buxton of St. Margaret's, who finding no license for the
alienation from Bolton to Proctor, was forced to get a royal pardon, (fn. 11)
from which time both these manors have been in that family, Elizabeth Buxton, a minor, being now lady [1736.]
Melding Hall manor
Was purchased by Sir Peter de Meauling, or Melding, of King
Henry I. to be held by this serjeantry of service, that the owner of it
should always sell the beasts taken in Norfolk or Suffolk for the King's
debts; it was then valued at 8l. per annum.
William, his son, had it next; and after him
Peter, his son, who owned it in 1226; and in 1249 sold it to
Sir Robert du Bois of Fersfield, reserving a rent of 4l. and the
service of a quarter of knight's fee, the whole of which he gave with
his sister in marriage to Reginald de Nuttun; for which alienation
the King seized the serjeantry, which was taken off this manor when
it was sold, and laid on Meling manor in Suffolk, according to a feoffment made by this Peter de Meling to Laurence de Meling; but he
gave them the value in exchange. Sir Robert du Bois, senior, left
Sir Robert his son, (fn. 12) who gave it to
John de Bosco, his brother, who, in 1286 had weif here; but
before 1308 it was again in Sir Robert de Bois and Christian his wife,
who afterwards settled it on
Sir William Carbonel, Knt. her son, (this Christian being
widow of Sir John Carbonel, Knt. when Sir Robert married her,)
who was lord in 1315; and in 1397,
Robert Carbonel, Knt. and Margery his wife, had it, and
John was his son and heir, 14 years old; Robert died seized this year,
on the 24th of Sept. to which Mr. Le Neve's Collections agree,
though he says it had been out of the Carbonel family in that time,
and was the inheritance of
Sir Robert de Caston, and descended to Margery, wife of Sir
Robert Carbonel, and Mary, wife of Sir William Fastolf; however it
John Carbonel, son of Sir Robert, inherited, who gave it to
Sir Roger Swillington of Ditchingham, and Joan his wife; he
died seized of this and Old Hall manor, in Swillington in Yorkshire,
and soon after his wife died also, upon which, the King received the
Robert de Swillington, brother and special heir of John,
according to the form of the gift made to Roger. Some time after it
Sir John Swillington, Knt. at whose death it was divided; and
Sir John Graa, Knt. had two parts of the manor, in right of
Margaret his wife, sister of Sir John Swillington; all which was mortgaged to Thomas Murstede, Esq. for 200 marks. From this time to
1454 I know nothing of it; but in that year
Sir Andrew Ogard, Knt. died without issue, seized of this manor
of Melding Hall; and it looks as if he gave it to
Bokenham Priory; for it appears from the Book of Accompts
of that house, that this manor belonged to it, and in 1479 was let at
15l. 10s. at which time the prior hired the other manor, at 5l. 10s.
per annum, and let them together; and from this time it continued in
the convent till its dissolution, and then went to the
Crown, and being afterwards granted off, it belonged in 1570, to
Francis Boulton; and in 1573 it came by exchange to
Thomas and Michael Heneage; and after that, having passed
through divers families, though but with small continuance in any
of them, it came to the
Buxtons, and was then joined to the other manor.
Mr. Le Neve says, there was a manor here, (which was this, as I
take it,) that all along attended the fate of the Albanies of Bokenham
castle, from whom it came to the Orrebys; John of that sirname had
it in 1315; from thence to the Cailys, and so to the Cliftons, and
was settled by Sir John Clifton, Knt. in 1447, by his will, on Joan his
wife, and her heirs, whose daughter Margaret married Sir Andrew
Ogard, Knt. of the Rye in Hertfordshire, who died seized as aforesaid.
This might be held of them as capital lords, under Eye honour,
till the whole fee came to Sir Andrew, about 1450, whether by marriage, purchase, or descent, I cannot learn. The ancient family of
Burston of Burston, bears,
Here is 10s. a year given to the poor, payable out of Mr. Alpe Ward's farm, and was
given by one of the Alpes, and also two townhouses.
In 1603, here were 80 communicants, and
now  there are 48 dwelling-houses, and
about 250 inhabitants.
The old tenth was 2l. 12s. The valuation
at the association, was 780l. and that to the
King's tax is 528l. per annum.
The Commons are Pound Green, Church Green, and Burston or
Northgate Green, where they common solely.
The Custom of the Manor is to the eldest son, and the fine at
the lord's will.
The Leet belongs to the hundred, to which it pays 2s. leet fee.