Lordship Title of Ockholt ID14104

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The reputed manor of OCKHOLT (Akeholte, Ocolte, Ocholte, xiii cent.; Okholt alias Norreysmanor, xv cent.; Ocole, Ockeholte called Norreis alias Fetyplace, xvi cent.; Ocknolds, xvii cent.; Ockwells, xix cent.) seems to have been originally a purpresture taken into cultivation between 1251 and 1259, and granted before 1284 to Richard le Norreys. In 1320 the land was held by another Richard le Norreys, who was perhaps the son of the first. He died in 1337, when his executors John le Norreys, Hugh de Braibeft and Roger de Crosseby, vicar of Bray, had it, together with the crops, for one year, according to the custom of Bray. William son of Richard le Norreys is mentioned in 1338, but he died before 1361, when John le Norreys was seised of Ockholt. Thomas le Norreys, the heir of John, died about 1406, leaving as his heir his brother Roger, who was succeeded in 1422 by his son William. In 1424 William bought from John Est all the lands and tenements known as Fords, but he had difficulty in making Est keep to the agreement, and it was not until 1427 that he was finally put in possession by judgement of the manor court of Bray. His son and heir John Norreys also increased and consolidated the family possessions in the parish. About 1445 he became esquire of the body to Henry VI, and gained enough celebrity in that position to be mentioned as 'the Conduit' in a popular song of the day. He seems to have flowed with the opinions of the party in power, for he retained his office and prosperity under Edward IV and left them at his death in 1466 to his son William. The manor of Ockholt, however, had been settled in 1459 on him jointly with his third wife Margaret, who held it until her death in 1495, when she was succeeded by her son. William Norreys had been knighted before 1480 and obtained various grants from Edward IV, but enjoyed less favour under Richard III. In 1483 he was concerned in the Duke of Buckingham's rebellion, and a reward was offered for his capture, but he managed to escape and lived until 1510, when he was succeeded by his grandson John the son of Edward Norreys, his son by his second wife. In 1517 John Norreys was pardoned for the murder of John Enhold of Nettlebed (Oxon.) on payment of 1,000 marks fine and the surrender of his lands to the value of £40 yearly to his younger brother Henry for life, at whose suit the pardon had been obtained. John's property in Maidenhead, Bray and elsewhere was accordingly granted to trustees to the use of his younger brother for life with reversion after his death to John and his heirs. It passed, however, to Sir Thomas Fettiplace, one of the trustees, who died seised of it in December 1525, leaving a widow Elizabeth and a daughter Katherine. In the following spring the widow bore a son Nicholas, but he lived less than six months, and in November 1526 Katherine again became her father's sole heir. She afterwards married Sir Francis Englefield, died childless in 1579, leaving as her heir her cousin Sir John Fettiplace, the greatgrandson of her father's younger brother Richard. Sir Francis Englefield survived his wife, but his lands were forfeited and Sir John Fettiplace was put in possession of Ockholt on payment of £200. In 1580 Fettiplace granted the manor to the queen so that it might be regranted to his son Bessels to be held in free socage and not in chief. He died the same year and was succeeded by his son Bessels, who leased Ockholt in 1583 to Thomas Ridley and others. The lease was bought in 1587 by William Day and Anne his wife, whose descendants were still living at Ockholt in 1749, but the descent of the manor is less easy to trace. It was, however, acquired by the Finches of Hertfordshire about 1679, and was bought from that family in 1786 by Penyston Portlock Powney, whose representative held it in 1813. It was purchased by the Grenfells and sold by Lord Desborough to the present owner, Sir Edward Arthur Barry, bart.
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