St. Mary Hoo by Edward Hasted
EASTWARD from Halstow, lies St. Mary's, distinguished from
others of the same name in this county, by the addition of
at Hoo ,
and near Rochester, both which are frequently used in deeds
relating to it.
There are two parishes mentioned in
the Textus Rossensis, by the names of Ordmæres circe de Hou ,
and Deremannes circe
de Hou , which certainly
mean this parish, and that of Alhallows adjoining. I should
imagine the former was the name belonging to this parish of
THE CHURCH of St. Mary's, with the village
adjoining to it, is situated about half a mile from the
marshes, which extend as much farther towards the river
Thames, which is its northern boundary. It lies much lower
and more level than the adjoining parish of Halstow; the
soil of it is in general more fertile, and not so much
subject to gravel, though about Combe, which is situated
midway between St. Mary's church and the marshes, the land
is poor, and much covered with furze and heath. It is in
other particulars of much the same description as the other
parishes in this hundred.
The MANOR of St. Mary's
Hoo, which is held of the paramount manor of Hoo, was,
together with the mansion, called St. Mary's-hall, antiently
part of the possessions of the family of Bardolf; and on the
division of the estates of Robert Bardolf among his five
nieces and coheirs, this manor fell to the share of Hugh
Poinz, in right of Maud his wife, who was one of them. (fn.
1) His descendant, Sir Nicholas de Poinz, sold it to William
de Halden, who died possessed of it in the 50th year of king
Edward III. in whose family it remained till the reign of
king Edward IV. when William de Halton, as the name was then
spelt, in the 8th year of that reign, alienated this manor
to William Lemyng, citizen and grocer of London. He was
succeeded in this manor by Sir John Brooke, lord Cobham, who
in the 7th year of king Henry VII. conveyed it by sale to
Sir Robert Read, afterwards made chief justice of the common
pleas, who died about the 10th year of king Henry VIII.'s
reign, (fn. 2) and on the partition of his lands among his
four daughters and coheirs, this manor was allotted, among
other premises, to the daughters and coheirs of his daughter
Mary, then deceased, by her husband, Sir William Barentyne;
and on a further partition of her share among them,
Margaret, one of her daughters, became entitled to this
manor, which she carried in marriage to Sir John Harcourt,
of Elnall, in Staffordshire. (fn. 3) They, in the 30th year
of Henry VIII. exchanged the manor of St. Mary's with John
Wiseman, gent. for the priory of Ronton, in Staffordshire,
who died possessed of it in 1558, leaving three sons; (fn.
4) of whom, Ralph, the second son, succeeded to the manor of
St. Mary's Hoo, and was knighted in 1603. He was of
Rivenhall, in Essex, where he died in 1608. The family of
Wiseman bore for their arms, Sable, a chevron, between
three cronels of tilting spears, argent .
This branch of Rivenhall, bore the chevron ermine .
His descendant, Sir William Wiseman, of Riven-hall, was
created a baronet in 1660. He alienated this manor, at the
latter end of the reign of king Charles II. to captain John
Daniel; his arms were, Argent, a pale fufilly sable ;
whose sole daughter and heir carried it in marriage to Mr.
Thomas Faunce, gent. of St. Margaret's, Rochester; whose
son, Tho. Faunce, esq. was of Sutton-at-Hone, and succeeded
his father in this manor, and bore for his arms, Argent, three lions rampant
sable, ribboned argent .
In 1735, he married Jane, daughter of Edmund Barrell, A. M.
prebendary of Rochester, by whom he had two sons, Edmund,
vicar of Sutton-at-Hone; and Thomas, town major of Quebec;
and three daughters, Anne, married to John Tasker, esq. of
Franks; Mary, to Alured Pincke, esq. of Sharsted; and Jane
to William Hey, esq. chief justice of Canada, and a
commissioner of customs. The Rev. Edm. Faunce, the eldest
son, married Anne, sister of James Chapman, esq. of Paul's
Cray hill, by whom he had a daughter Anne, married to Mr.
Stephen Lee, of Doddington; and one son, Mr. Edmund, Faunce,
who is now entitled to the inheritance of this estate. Among
the Harleian manuscripts, in the British museum, No. 590–1,
is part of a roll, containing a survey of the marsh of Kent,
with pictures of several of the manor houses, and among them
this of St. Mary's, then belonging to the lord Cobham.
NEWLAND'S is a reputed manor in this parish, which was as high as any
evidence can be traced, the inheritance of the family of
Somer, since vulgarly called Somers, (fn. 5) who bore for
their arms, Vert, a
fess dancette ermine.
Richard le Somer made his will, as appears by the
records of the church of Rochester, in the year 1347, and
died possessed of this manor and other lands in Halstow,
Higham, Leigh, and elsewhere in this county, from whom it
descended to John Somer, who was chancellor of the exchequer
in the reign of Henry VI. and from him again to Jeffry
Somer, who left two sons, William, who possessed the manor
of Newland's, and Thomas, whose descendants were of Halstow.
William was knighted, and thrice employed by queen
Elizabeth, as public ambassador to foreign states, His son,
John Somer, clerk, was of St. Margaret's, Rochester, and
left two daughters his coheirs, of whom Maria, the eldest,
married first Thomas Peniston, and afterwards Sir Alexander
Temple, the latter of whom, upon the partition of their
estates, became entitled to this manor, whose heir, about
the time of the death of king Charles I. conveyed it by sale
to the treasurers of the chest for sick and maimed seamen,
at Chatham, in whom the possession of this manor and estate
There is no court belonging to this
manor, which is held of the manor of St. Mary's.
COOMBE is a manor here, which soon after the conquest was in the
possession of Wlfward de Hou, surnamed Henry, who became a
monk of the priory of St. Andrew, in Rochester, and
afterwards gave to that priory the half of his tithes in
this parish, and the third part of his substance after his
death, to which his wife and his son Robert, and his
brothers Hereward, Siward, and Edward, freely consented.
How this manor passed afterwards I have not
found till the reign of Henry VIII. when Sir Tho. Wyatt, of
Allington castle, was owner of it; and he, in the 34th year
of it, conveyed it, among other premises, to that king; and
it seems to have remained in the crown till queen Elizabeth
granted it to Sir Thomas Walsingham.
At the beginning
of the reign of king George II. about the year 1732, this
manor of Combe, was purchased by the trustees, of the rector
of St. George's church, Bloomsbury, London, with part of a
sum of money allotted at the first erection of it, in 1731,
towards the support of the rector, which money was directed
to be laid out in the purchase of lands and tenements, in
fee simple, as a perpetual fund for the maintenance of the
rector, and his successors.
Edward Vernon, D. D. was
the first rector of this church, and as such possessed and
resided frequently at this manor; he died in 1761. His
successor, as rector of Bloomsbury, was Charles Tarrant,
D.D. afterwards dean of Peterborough, who finding it a very
unprofitable estate, by reason of the great annual expence
of the sea walls belonging to it, obtained an act in 1765,
to enable him to sell it. In pursuance of which it was
afterwards conveyed to David Lesley, esq, and Mr. John
Proby; the former of whom soon afterwards died, leaving his
two nieces, Frances and Sarah Meekes, his coheirs, who about
the year 1773, joined with the heirs at law of Mr. John
Proby, then deceased, in the conveyance of this manor, to
Owen and William Meredith, of Rochester; the latter of whom,
on the death of his brother, in 1780, possessed the whole of
this estate, which he sold in 1786, to the Rev. Richard
Hancorn Duppa, of Hollingborne; whose devisee, Richard Duppa
Duppa, esq. of that place, is the present owner of it.
The PORTION of TITHES above mentioned, since called COOMBE PORTION ,
given to the priory of St. Andrew, Rochester, by Wlfward,
surnamed Henry, remained part of the possessions of that
priory, at its dissolution in the 32d year of king Henry
VIII. when the same was surrendered into the king's hands,
who the next year settled this portion of tithes, among
other premises, by his dotation charter, on his new-founded
dean and chapter of Rochester, where the inheritance of it
On the dissolution of the deans and
chapters, after the death of king Charles I. this portion of
tithes was, in 1649, surveyed, when it was returned, that
the portion of tithes, called Combe, alias Coome, and also
usually called St. Mary's, arising from lands, sometime
before belonging to the crown of England, called Combe, with
the tithe of ten fields and closes lying in St. Mary's, Hoo,
containing, by estimation, one hundred and eighty-four
acres, the improved rent of which was 10l. 14s. per annum,
was let by the late dean and chapter, anno 16 Charles I for
twenty-one years, at the yearly rent of fourteen shillings
per annum. The lessees of it, under the dean and chapter,
have been for some time the owners of Combe manor as above
mentioned, the present lessee being Richard Duppa Duppa,
WHITE, formerly of Chalk (who lies buried under an altar
tomb in this church yard) by his will, in 1622, devised 2l.
per annum to the poor of this parish, not receiving alms,
payable on St. Andrew's day; and he gave yearly sums to the
poor of Chalk, Cowling, and Stoke.
The parish of St.
Mary's, Hoo, has the right of nomination to one place in the
New College of Cobham, for one poor person, inhabitant of
this parish, to be chosen and presented so, and by such, as
the ordinances of the college have power to present and
elect for this parish; and if the parish of Higham should
make default in electing, then the benefit of such election
devolves to this parish.
is within the ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION of the diocese and deanry of Rochester. The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, is
a small building of one isle and a chancel. In this
church, in the nave, an inscription for Thomas Lukyn, obt.
1412, and Joane his wife. In the church yard is a tomb, partly sunk in the ground, for Henry White, a
benefactor to this parish, and others in this neighbourhood.
This church was formerly esteemed but as a chapel to the
church of St. Warburgh, Hoo, as appears by the instrument of
bishop Laurence, in 1274, recited more fully before, being
pensionary to that church, beyond memory, as to its mother
church, in the payment of half a marc yearly. This pension
continued part of the revenues of the priory there till the
dissolution of it in the 32d year of Henry VIII. when it was
surrendered into that king's hands, who the next year
settled it, by his dotation charter, on his new erected dean
and chapter of Rochester, part of whose revenues it now
remains. Notwithstanding the above decree of bishop
Laurence, the patronage of this church seems to have passed
in the same chain of ownership that the lordship of Hoo did,
and on a dispute concerning the right of presenting to this
rectory, on a vacancy in 1501, Sir William de la Pole, in
right of his wife Catherine, formerly wife of Sir Henry lord
Grey, who had in his life time presented to it, brought his
claim before the bishop's official, to establish his right
to it, and it was decreed to him by the definitive sentence
of the official; after which this patronage continued in the
possession of the proprietors of the manor of Hoo till Sir
Edward Hales, bart. in the reign of king Charles II.
alienated it; and after some intermediate owners it was
conveyed to Chapman, whose heirs sold it to Richard
Fletcher, A. M. rector of this church, whose son, the Rev.
Richard Fletcher, sold it, in 1786, to the Rev. Robert Burt;
whose widow, Mrs. Sarah Burt, is now entitled to it.
In the year 1476, a suit was commenced before the bishop's
official, against Richard Fletcher, rector of St. Mary's, by
the rector of the adjoining parish of Halstow, for the
recovery and establishment of certain tithes, as rector of
the parish of Halstow, which claim was then established to
him, by the definitive sentence of the official, as has been
already recited fully under that parish.
is valued in the king's books, at 16l. 12s. 1d. and the
yearly tenths at 1l. 13s. 2½d.
On the dissolution of
deans and chapters, after the death of king Charles I. a
survey was taken in 1650, of the several ecclesiastical
livings in this diocese, by which it appeared, that here was
a parsonage presentative, worth 83l. 13s. per annum, Sir
Edw. Hales, patron; and Mr. Tracy, who had been sequestered
from Bredherste, incumbent.