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Shottesbrooke Manor, Berkshire, England

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Shottesbrooke Manor, Berkshire, England

At the date of the Domesday Survey the manor of SHOTTESBROOK was held of the king by Alward the goldsmith, whose father had held it of Queen Edith in the reign of Edward the Confessor. In 1166 the manor is entered on the Pipe Roll as 'Sotesbroch aurifabrorum' and its tenure is returned later as that of furnishing charcoal to the king's goldsmith for the king's crown and regalia. Apparently before 1186 the serjeanty tenure was changed for military service for forty days in the year and the annual payment of 20s. to the wardship of Windsor Castle. In 1339 the king released the rent of 20s., substituting for it the rent of a pair of gilt spurs to be paid at the castle.

In the middle of the 12th century the manor was held by Ralph le Breton, whose lands (or some of them) were in the king's hands in 1182, when Shottesbrook was being farmed of the Crown. Apparently about 1186 the manor was granted to Hugh de Shottesbrook, for in 1186–7 he was assessed for 20s., which was probably in regard of Shottesbrook, and in 1189 he paid 100 marks for having his land of Shottesbrook, which Ralph le Breton held. Hugh de Shottesbrook died before 27 October 1221, and his son Robert did homage for his lands. In 1243 Robert de Shottesbrook was party to a fine with William le Breton, by which William quitclaimed to him one-half of the manor consequent on a claim made by William to the same, and Robert granted to William the advowson of the church, land to the value of 40s., and the services of certain tenants which were appurtenant to this half. Robert died before 1251, when his son and heir Robert was in the custody of Eudo de Shelfhangre. Robert the younger died in 1261, leaving a son John, then aged three years and three months, who had seisin of his lands in 1278. He died in 1296, leaving two daughters and co-heirs, Rose and Elizabeth. The younger daughter, Elizabeth, proved her age in 1297, and with her husband, John de Flaschel, had seisin of a moiety of the manor. She died without issue in 1300, when this moiety reverted to her elder sister Rose, whose husband, William Vis de Lou, did homage for the whole manor in the same year.Ten years later they received licence to enfeoff Reginald son of Walter de Pavely and his wife Alice of the manor. n 1332 Reginald de Pavely conveyed the manor of Shottesbrook to John de Oxonia, a citizen and vintner of London, who in 1335 enfeoffed William Trussell, son of William Trussell of Kibblestone, co. Stafford,called the king's yeoman.Trussell founded a college in the manor for a warden, five chaplains and two clerks to celebrate mass daily for his own and the king's soul, as well as for those of their ancestors and descendants, and endowed it with the advowson of the church and the rent of 40s. from the manor, which had been acquired from the heirs of William le Breton (see advowson). In 1337 William Earl of Salisbury, lord of Bisham, granted to William Trussell a purpresture on the forest called Benetfeldesheth, which formerly belonged to the Knights Templars, and also quitclaimed to him his right in lands called Shitehangrecroftes.In the next year Trussell received a grant from the Crown of freedom from expeditation of his dogs, so that he could hunt with them in Windson Forest, and in 1340 a further grant of view of frankpledge in the manor of Shottesbrook. A settlement on himself and his wife Isabel in tail, with remainder to William's brother Warin, had been made in 1339.His wife Isabel died before 1348, when he settled the manor on himself and Ida his wife and his son John.The latter must have predeceased him, for the estate devolved at his own death in 1363 upon daughter Margaret wife of Fulk de Penbrugge, upon whom a settlement in tail was made in 1371 by Sir William Trussell of Kibblestone, her cousin. Margaret died in 1399, when her heir was returned as William Trussell (aged twelve), son of Lawrence and grandson of Warin, the brother of William, Margaret's father. In 1407 William granted the manor for life to Fulk de Penbrugge, with reversion to Isabel, the second wife of the latter, and her heirs until twenty years after the death of Fulk, when William and his heirs were to take possession. Fulk died in 1409. In 1428 William Trussell was holding the manor,and in 1463 was succeeded by his son Thomas. In 1481 William Trussell, apparently the son of Thomas, died seised of the manor, leaving a son Edward, then aged three years, as his heir.Edward survived only until his twenty-first year, dying in 1499 and leaving a son John, who was then a year old. The son died a few months after his father, and his sister Elizabeth, aged four in 1501, became her father's sole heir. She married before 1510 John de Vere, fifteenth Earl of Oxford. One of their sons, Robert de Vere, was appointed by his father the master of Shottesbrook College in 1539.

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John de Vere was succeeded in 1540 by his son John, sixteenth earl, who in 1544 conveyed the manor to his brother Robert de Vere for life, and dying in 1562 left a son and heir Edward, who was dealing with the manor in 1574. In 1578–9 he sold the manor to Thomas Noke, son of 'Father Noke,' who died at Reading seised of it in 1583, and was followed by his son Thomas.It is not known how or when the manor left this family, but in 1628 Richard Powle, registrar of the Court of Chancery, died seised of it, bequeathing it to his kinsman Henry Powle,Sheriff of Berkshire in 1632, who in 1638 protested against the imposition of ship-money and refused to pay more than a quarter of the amount demanded. His elder son Richard, who was member for Berkshire in the Long Parliament of 1661 and was made a knight of the Bath in the same year, died without issue in 1678 and was followed by his brother Henry, a prominent member of the Whig Opposition in 1677–81. He was M.P. for New Windsor and Speaker of the House of Commons in the Convention Parliament summoned in January 1689. He was made Master of the Rolls in 1690 and it was he who collected the valuable library of MSS. which now forms the nucleus of the Landsdowne collection at the British Museum. The manor was bought before 1698 by William Cherry, who in that year joined with John Powle, Anne Powle, widow, and John Whitfield in making a settlement of the manor. Francis Cherry, son of William, died in 1713. Francis Cherry was a man of great piety and learning and a well-known Jacobite. He made Shottesbrook a refuge and a home to many distinguised nonjurors, who, like himself, refused to take the oath of allegiance to William of Orange, the chief among them being Dr. Dodwell the historian and Thomas Hearne the antiquary. In 1716 the manor was sold by his widow Elizabeth and his daughters Anne and Elizabeth Cherry to Robert Vansittart, son of Peter Vansittart, who belonged to a German family and came to England as a merchant venturer in the reign of Charles II. Robert Vansittart died without issue in 1719.His brother Arthur, who succeeded him, was Sheriff of Berkshire in 1731. He died in 1760 and was succeeded by his son Arthur Vansittart, M.P. for Berkshire 1757–74, who was dealing with the manor by recovery in the following year (fn. 79) and again in 1800. Upon his death in 1806 the manor devolved upon his son and heir Arthur Vansittart, Colonel of the Berkshire Militia, M.P. for Windsor 1804–6. He died in 1829. His son Arthur made a settlement of the manor in 1831 and died in 1859. The property passed to his son Captain Coleraine Vansittart, whose sister Mrs. Oswald A. Smith succeeded to Shottesbrook at his death in 1886. Her son Mr. Basil Guy Oswald Smith is the present lord of the manor.

The COLLEGE OF SHOTTESBROOK and its site and the manorial estate belonging to it, which fell into the king's hands at the dissolution of chantries in 1547, were granted in 1548 to Thomas and Edward Weldon, and the latter died seised of them in 1551, and was followed by his son Thomas, who died in 1590 seised of the mansion-house and site of the college. William, his heir, who was then eight years old, was dealing with the property by fine in 1603 and 1620. In 1667 George Weldon, the third son and ultimate heir of William Weldon, conveyed the manor of the college to Richard Powle, (fn. 89) lord of Shottesbrook, and the descent of the college estate is from this date identical with that of the manor.