Origins in Shrivenham

The village of Fernham was originally part of Shrivenham and was not known as it’s own settlement until later, so Shrivenham is where the background begins.

In 1086 Shrivenham formed part of the royal demesne. The manor remained owned by the Crown until 1200, when it was granted by King John to Geoffrey Count of Perche. The count was killed at the battle of Lincoln in 1217 and the manor returned to the Crown, the custody of it was granted to Henry de Trubleville and Robert de Drus. Shortly afterwards, during the minority of the king, the Bishop of Châlons came to England and claimed the lands of Geoffrey Count of Perche.

The Bishop of Châlons sold his land in Shrivenham to William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke, and William Longespée, Earl of Salisbury. Although technically both were part of Shrivenham Hundred, Marshal’s portion was commonly known as Shrivenham Salop to distinguish one from the other. William Marshal granted his portion of Shrivenham to his daughter Joan who married William de Valence, the half-brother of the king, who in right of his wife’s mother received the title of Earl of Pembroke.

William de Valence

Who is he?

William de Valence

William de Valence was a French nobleman and knight who became important in English politics due being the half-brother of Henry III. He was born Guillaume de Lusignan, but took the name William de Valence (William of Valence) when he came to England. He supported the King and Prince Edward against the rebels led by Simon de Montfort in the Second Barons’ War, after their defeat at the Battle of Lewes on 14th May 1264 he fled to France only to return a year later to support the royalists.
High Street

The High Street

Thatchetts

Thatchetts

Fernham Manor

During the first half of the 13th century the manor of Fernham was created by Alan de Farnham and was composed of lands held by the lord of Shrivenham. In 1257 Farnhams daughter and heir Juliana de Elsefeld and her husband Gilbert were lords of land in Shrivenham Hundred, they quitclaimed six virgates of this land to William and Joan de Valence who were lords of Shrivenham Salop, in return receiving another plot of land where the manor of Stauelpeth was built, this is known today as the location of Stallpits Farm.

In the same year William and Joan received a quitclaim for themselves from Giles de Clifford and his wife Eva of 2 virgates in Fernham. William de Valence fought in the battle of Lewes on the king’s side and after he fled to France after his defeat, Fernham was granted as a manor, with Shrivenham, to his wife Joan de Valence for her maintenance and was later passed to Richard Talbot, 2nd Baron Talbot along with parts of Shrivenham.

Quitclaim Deed

What is it?

Quitclaim Deed

A quitclaim deed is a legal instrument which is used to transfer interest in real property from a grantor to a grantee. The grantor ‘quits’ any claim to the property, thereby allowing the rights to transfer to the grantee.

Virgate

What is it?

Virgate

A virgate was an English unit of land. Primarily a measure of tax assessment rather than area, the virgate was equal to around 30 acres and was normally used to designate tax areas.
Fernham Farm House

Fernham Farm House

Fernham Farm Workers

Fernham Farm Workers

From Then to Now

Some of the records detailing the ownership of Fernham Manor and it’s surrounding lands are missing, which is the reason some dates in this timeline are missing.

Current Year: 1558 – 50%

Fernham Manor

Where is it?

Fernham Manor

Fernham Manor is located at the end of The Green opposite the church, the building is still standing today, conveniently named ‘The Old Manor House’. The manor also functioned as a post office for some of it’s lifetime.
The Old Manor House

The Old Manor House

Peach Cottage

Peach Cottage

The Green

The Green

Current Year : 1733 – 70%
Current Year : 1924 – 90%
Current Year : 2015 – 100%

Anything to add?

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Sources