Edward Hasted 1799
The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent
WRITTEN in antient records, Betteshangre(w), lies the next parish southward from Ham(x). The manor of Northborne claims paramount over this parish, subordinate to which
THE MANOR OF GREAT BETSHANGER,
so called to distinguish it from the adjoining one of Little Betshanger, in the parish of Northborne. This manor was among those lands which William the Conqueror, on his putting Dover Castle under a new form of government, assigned to Hugh de Port, for his assistance under John de Fienes in the defence of it. These lands together made up the barony of Port, and were held by barony of the above castle, by the service of performing ward there for that purpose. In which grant this manor was esteemed as one knight's fee, under which notion it was held of his descendants, the St. Johns(y), by a family named De Marinis, or Marney, obtained a charter of free warren for his demesne lands within this manor in the 1st year of K. Edw. III; after which it did not continue long in this name, for John de Tenacre, or Tancre, soon afterwards appears to have become possessed of it, and he sold it before the 20th year of K. Edward III, to John de Soles, who that year paid aid for it as one knight's fee, which the before-mentioned John de Tancre before held in Betteshangre of John de St. John. He died seised of this manor in the 49th year of that reign (z). How long it continued in his descendants I have not found, but in the reign of K. Henry IV, it was become the property of Rutter, from which name it passed about the beginning of K. Edw. IV.'s reign, into that of Lichfield [sic], in which it continued some time (a). Roger Lichfeld [sic] died in the 4th year of K Henry VIII, and by will gave it to Edward, son and heir of his son William, deceased, in tail, with remainder to his son Gregory Lichfeld, and then in like tail to his three daughters, Alice Cocks, Joane Rutter, and Betrine Wolett, who at length by the deaths of the said Edward and Gregory, without issue, became entitled to it, and on the division of their inheritance this manor was allocted to Alice, who entitled her husband, Thomas Cocks, esq; customer of Sandwich, to the possession of it, and he at the latter end of that reign alienated it to John Boys, afterwards knighted, and of St. Gregory's in Canterbury, who dying without issue in 1612, he devised this manor to Edward Boys, esq; his nephew, one of the sons of his brother Vincent Boys, of Bekesborne, in whose descendants it continued down to Edward Grotius Boys, of Canterbury, esq; (b) who dying on July 22,
1706, without issue, bequeathed this manor to his kinsman, the Rev. Thomas Brett, Rector of this parish, the son of Thomas Brett, of Wye, gent. By Letitia, his father's eldest surviving sister (c), and he about the year 1713 alienated it to Salmon Morrice, esq; a Captain of the Royal Navy, and afterwards promoted in 1733 to the rank of Admiral. He almost rebuilt this seat (d), in which he afterwards resided until his death in 1740, since which it has continued in his descendants down to his grandson, the Rev. James Morrice, who is the present possessor of it (e).
PRESENT STATE OF BETSHANGER
This parish is very small, containing about 260 acres of land, the soil of which is much the same a that of the neighbouring parishes, but much inclining to chalk. There are only three houses in the parish. The court-lodge, situated in the bottom of a valley, having the church near the south-east side of it. The farm-house of the Betshanger estate, and a farm-house in the northern part of the parish, formerly belonging to the Napletons, then to Mr. John Curling, of Ham who sold this estate to his son William, who has since sold it to John Minet Fector, esq; the present owner of it. The road from Canterbury to Deal runs along the north-east side of it, at a small distance from the mansion, round which the hills rise, which are arable, mostly open, and uninclosed. There are no parochial charities.
THE ECCLESIASTICAL JURISDICTION.
BETSHANGER is within the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the diocese of Canterbury and deanry of Sandwich. The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, is a small mean building, consisting of a nave and chancel, both which are kept uncommonly neat. Over the south door is a circular arch with zig-zag moulding. Under it the figure of our Saviour. This seems much older than the church, which shews no signs of antiquity. There is a small wooden turret at the west end, in which are three bells (f).
In the east window of the chancel are these shields of arms - Sable, on a chevron between 3 stags attired srgent, a mullet of the first, for Cocks. - Chequy or and azure, a fess gules, all within a bordure of the last, for Clifford; and there were formerly these arms, though now defaced - Azure, a cross argent, impaling, or a griffin segreant sable, within a bordure gules, for Dean Boys - Azure
[p. 186 and 187]
2 bends argent - and the like arms, only the bordure charged with acorns and crosses, for Boys, of Denton (g).
This church, which is a rectory, has always been appendant to the manor, and continues so at this time, the Rev. James Morrice, owner of Betshanger manor, being the present patron and Rector of it.
This rectory is valued in the King's books at 7l. 14s. It is now a discharged living, and is of about the clear yearly value of 60l.
In 1588, here were 30 communicants, and it was valued at 40l. In 1640, there were 30 communicants, and it was valued at 60l.
It has no parsonage-house or barn, nor any other glebe but the church-yard, which is very small, though it appears by the King's books, taken anno 26 Henry VIII, that there were seven acres of arable glebe belonging to it.
CHURCH OF BETSHANGER.
or by whom presented
|Thomas Cocks.||(h) David Reynolde, in 1534.|
|Family of Boys||(i) Edward Monday, A. M. Oct. 19, 1586, resigned 1597.|
|(k) John Boys, A. M. Sept. 30, 1597, obiit 1625.|
|(l) John Sacket, A.M. Mar. 22, 1625, resig. 1628.|
|Moses Capel, A.M. Aug. 13, 1628, resig. 1644.|
|Nicholas Billingsley, A.M. Nov. 23, 1644, resig. July 4, 1651.|
|Robert Scudder, 1651, obiit 1660.|
|(m) John Dod, A.M. Nov. 9, 1661, ejected 1662.|
||(n) Thomas Brett, 1662, obt. 1680.|
|(o) Thomas Boys, A.M. Sep. 27, 1680, obt. Dec. 1702.|
|(p) Thomas Brett, LL.D. Apr. 1703, deprived Jan. 1716.|
|Family of Morrice.
||(q) Edw. Lloyd, A.M. ind. July 17, 1716, obt. Apr. 11, 1741.|
|James Lavaure, A.M. May 1741, obiit Nov. 1743.|
|(r) John James, A.B. Dec. 1743, obt. Nov, 27, 1775.|
|(s) John Kenrick, A.M. Apr. 5, 1776, obiit April 8, 1793.|
|(t) Jas. Morrice, Sep. 1793. Present Rector.|
[p. 184 footnotes]
(v) And Vicar of St. Clement's, Sandwich, by dispensation.
(w) Dr. Plot thinks this name was derived from some battle fought here in antient time, on the hanging of the hill.
(x) There was no Borsholder chosen for this parish or Ham, till within these few years, when one was appointed at the Petty Sessions to act for both parishes jointly, which they have continued to do ever since. The Constable for the Lower Half Hundred of Eastry always acted in that capacity before.
(y) See more of the Ports, and St. Johns, in vol. ii, of this history, p571.
(z) Rot. Esch. ejus an.
(a) Philipott, p76, says, their arms were in his time in the windows of Dane Court in Tilmanstone, viz. Bendee of 6 pieces azure and ermine. Thomas Litchfield was at the latter end of Q. Elizabeth's reign of Tilmanstone, and married Mary, daughter of Sir Lewis Clifford, knt. by Bennet, daughter of John Guldeford.
(b) See an account of the branch of this family settled at Fredville, vol. iii. of this history, p710, and of Sir John Boys, of St. Gregory's, knt. under Bleane, in the same vol. p. 565. His brother Vincent, of Bekesborne above-mentioned, was fourth son of William Boys, of Fredville, by Mary Ringeley his wife, and left issue by Elizabeth his wife, daughter and coheir of Richard Barry, of Sevington, esq; and Lieutenant of Dover Castle, several children, of whom, Edward, the eldest, became possessed of Beteshanger, by the will of his uncle Sir John Boys, in 1612, though he had resided there for several years before by his uncle's leave. He resided in this mansion for near 50 years, and was buried in 1649 in this church. He was thrice married, first to Judith, daughter of Robert Ridley, of East Grinsted, esq; secondly to Elizabeth, widow of Edward Kelk, of Sandwich, gent. and daughter of Christopher Tilghman, of Selling, gent. and thirdly to Judith Wheler, of Tottenham High Cross, who survived him. He left issue by his first wife only, a son John Boys, and other children; which John Boys, esq; possessed this manor, and was a member of that long Parliament, which began in 1640, in which he zealously sided with those who were enemies of the King and the established church. He died in 1678, and was buried here, having been thrice married, first to Elizabeth, daughter of Nicholas Thompson, of Chichester in Sussex, gent by whom he had Edward, John, and other children; secondly to Letitia Jefferay, daughter and coheir of Thomas Jefferay, of Chittingley in the co. of Sussex, by whom he had several children, viz. Lettitia, married to Thomas Brett, of Wye, gent. Jefferay, of whom below; Thomas, Rector of Betshanger, and Master of Catherine Hall, Cambridge; Anne, married to Herbert Woodward, of Ashford, gent. and Mary to Christopher Milles of Hearne, gent. and thirdly to Margaret, daughter of sir John Routh, of Brenley, knt. widow of Richard Bate, esq; by whom he had no issue. On his death Edward Boys, esq; his eldest son, succeeded to this manor, but resided only a small time at the mansion of it, and dying in 1691, without issue, he was succeeded in it by his next brother John, who did not reside here neither, but dying in London unmarried in 1698, he left this estate to [NB. footnote (b) continues on page 185]
[p. 185 footnotes]
(b) [contd] his eldest half-brother, Jefferay Boys, of Canterbury esq; a Bencher of Grays Inn, who married Anne Adye, daughter of Edward Adye, of Barham esq; and died in 1703, leaving this estate to his only son Edward Grotius Boys, of Canterbury, esq; who died possessed of it in 1706, and was buried with his ancestors in this church. Dying without issue, he left this manor with the rest of his estae by his last will to the Rev. Thomas Brett, LL. D. the son of Letitia, his father's eldest surviving sister, as above-mentioned.
This branch of the family of Boys bore for their arms - Or, a griffin segreant sable, within a bordure gules. Crest, a demi-lion rampant, crowned or.
(c) See an account of the family of Brett, vol. iii. of this history, under Wye.
(d) This seat was built by one of the family of Boys, whose arms with the quarterings are over the mantle in the hall, carved in stone.
(e) There is no Court held for this manor, and indeed at this time, it has only the reputation of being one. -. The estate here, belonging to Mr. Morrice, consists, including West Court, alias Burnt Barns, so called from the buildings having been destroyed by fire, of 400 acres of land, 164 of which only in this parish, and the remainder in Norborne, Tilmanstone, and Sholdon.
Salmon Morrice esq; was the son of Captain Morrice, of the Royal Navy, and a younger son of the family of that name, of Werrington in co. Devon. At the time of his death, on March 21, 1741, he was Vice-admiral of the White. He lies buried under an elegant marble monument, in a small building adjoining to the church, with his wife Elizabeth, daughter of William Wright, esq; a Commissioner of the Navy, who died in 1733, by whom he had issue two sons and four daughters; of the latter, Sarah married to Mr. Dawes, a Lieutenant of the Marines; Elizabeth to Thomas Boteler, of Brook-street in Eastry, esq; Jane to William Hewett, esq; an officer in the army; and Maria-Susanna to Mr. James Baddeley, of London. The sons were, Wright Morrice, esq; who married Sarah, daughter of Thomas Peke, esq; who died a young man in 1732, in his father's life-time, without issue; and William, who became his father's heir. He was at first bred a merchant in Holland, in the house of Godard, of Rotterdam, but on his brother's death was settled by his father at Betshanger, and was afterwards of Canterbury, esq. He died in 1758, having married Mary, eldest daughter of Robert Chadwick, of Northfleet, esq; a Captain in the Royal Navy, who is still living, by whom he had four sons. William, a Lieutenant-colonel of Dragoons, who possessed the manor of Betshanger, &c. on his father's death, and died unmarried at Putney in 1787, æt. 49, and was buried at Betshanger; Robert, who died an infant. The Rev. James Morrice, Cl. Vicar of Flower in the co. of Northampton, who became his brother's heir, and is now possessed of Betshanger, Norborne, &c. and is Rector of this parish. He married Maria, second daughter of Adrian Ducarel, of London, merchant, (brother of the late Andrew Coltee Ducarel, of Doctors Commons, LL.D) by whom he had issue two sons, Frederick-Edward and Andrew-Ducarel, and three daughters, Charlotte-Elizabeth, Mary-Margaret, and Theodosia-Frances. The fourth son, Thomas, was bred to the navy, of which he was a Lieutenant, and having retired from the service, now resides in Monmouthshire.
The arms of Morrice are - Gules, a lion rampant regardant or.
(f) On the treble bell is this legend, in old English letters, Maria plena gracia mater misericordie. An escutcheon on each side of which, Sca Maria. The arms-Quarterly, 1st, Cocks; 2d, Per chevron in chief, 3 escallops; 3d, Two bends; 4th, A bend ermine between two swans, impaling Clifford and Guldeford, quartered with Colepeper. On the second bell, Istæ tres nolæ sunt fratrum dona duorum. An escutcheon, on each side Ses Thomas. Arms - Cocks, and the other three coats first above-mentioned. On the third bell, Hic olim Pastor atq; Patronus erant. Arms the same as the second bell, and under, Ses Edmundus Rex. The arms are all reversed, from what is mentioned above, through the ignorance or mistake of the bell-founder. At the end of each of the above sentences is the reverse of a silver coin of [NB. footnote (f) continues on page 186]
[p. 186 footnotes]
(f) [contd] the date of the bells, probably Henry VI. Thomas Cocks, who died in 1558, was the Patron, and his brother William, Clericus was the Pastor; they were the sons of Alice Cocks, the daughter of ---- Litchfield. Thomas married Margaret, daughter of sir Lewis Clifford, by Bennet, daughter of John Guldeford, which sir Lewis was the son of Alexander Clifford, by Mary, daughter of Walter Colepeper.
(g) In this church are buried many of the family of Boys, formerly possessors of the manor and residents in this parish, whose monuments and grave-stones are still remaining in it.
In the chancel is a mural monument for Mrs. Elizabeth, wife of John Boys, of Betshanger, esq; daughter of Nicholas Thompson, of Chichester in Suffolk, gent. She died in 1640, æt. 31, having had issue, Edward, John, Elizabeth, Mary, Judith, Margaret, and Katherine. Atms - Boys impaling Thompson. Another for Lætitia, second wife of John Boys, of Betshanger, esq; daughter of Thomas Jefferay, of Chittingley in Sussex, esq. She had issue, Jefferay, Thomas, Lettice, Anne, and Margaret. Arms - Boys impaling Jefferay. Obiit 1660. Another for Edward Boys, of Betshanger, esq; eldest son of John Boys, esq; born 1636; married Anne, daughter of George Duke, of Cosington, esq; 1662, and died without issue. Arms - Boys impaling Duke. Another for John Boys, esq; son and heir of Edward Boys, esq; who married three wives; Elizabeth Thompson, Lætitia Jefferay, and Margaret Routh. He died in 1678, æt. 72. At top, three shields of Boys with three impalements, viz. Of Thompson - Argent, a fess ragulee, between three birds sable. Jefferay - Azure, a frette or, on a chief argent, a lion passant gules. Routh - Argent, on a bend cotised sable, three mullets of the first. A monument for Edward Boys, of Betshanger, esq; son of Vincent, by Elizabeth Barry, Lieutenant of Dover Castle in 1588. He married first Judith, daughter of Robert Ridley, of East Grinsted in the co. of Sussex, esq; by whom he had John and Edward; Jane married to Nicholas Darrell, Doctor of Law; Judith to sir Samuel Sleigh, of Ash in the co. of Derby, knt. Mary to Moses Capell, Cl. Elizabeth to Gervase Sleigh, Cl. brother to sir Samuel above-mentioned, and Margaret to George Crayford, of Great Mongeham, esq; his second wife was Elizabeth Tilghman, relict of Edward Kalk, of Sandwich, gent. His third wife was Judith Wheler, of Totnam High Cross, obiit 1649. Arms - Boys quartering Barry and Sevington, impaling Ridley, argent, on a rushy mount in base proper, a bull passant gules, armed, and unguled or. On a grave-stone, a memorial for Judith, wife of Edward Boys of Betshanger, esq; obiit 1628, having had issue two sons and five daughters. John Boys, of Betshanger, esq; obiit 1678, æt. 72. Another for Elizabeth Boys, wife of Edward Kalk, of Lincolnshire, and late of Sandwich, gent. afterwards the 2d wife of Edward Boys, esq; obiit 1630. On a grave-stone, at the entrance of the chancel, is a memorial for two children of James Langford Nibbs, esq; and Barbara his wife, who both died infants. Against the north wall of the chancel are three hatchments, the first having - Gules, a lion rampant regardant or, Morrice; impaling azure, two bars argent, in chief 3 leopard's heads or, for Wright - the 2d, Wright as above, impaling argent, a bend between 6 letters T sable - the 3d, Morrice, impaling gules, an escutheon within 8 martlets in orle argent, for Chadwick. Within a covered building, connected with the church, erected for the purpose, is an elegant marble monument, made by Scheemakers, with the arms of Morrice and Wright, erected to the memory of Salmon Morrice esq; Vice-admiral of his Majesty's white squadron, who died in 1740, æt. 68 years; and of Elizabeth his wife, daughter of William Wright, esq; a commissioner of the navy, obiit 1733 æt. 48. Beside the above, there is in the church a mural monument for John James A.M. Rector of this parish and Deal, obiit Nov. 27. 1775, æt. 57; also Sarah his wife, obiit 1782, æt. 57. A memorial in the nave for Thomas, son of William Hughes, esq; and Mary his wife, obiit 1776, an infant.
(h) Wills, Prerog. off. Cant.
(i) He was at the same time collated to the vicarage of Tilmanstone, which he resigned as well as this rectory in 1597.
(k) He held this rectory with that of Great Mongeham by dispensation, and was Dean of Canterbury.
(l) He resigned this rectory on being collated to that of Great Mongeham.
(m) He was ejected by the Bartholomew act. Calamy's life of Baxter, p. 286.
[p. 187 footnotes]
(n) He was likewise Curate of Sutton.
(o) He was Master of Catherine Hall in Cambridge, and Curate of sutton by Dover. He lies buried in this church.
(p) He was likewise Rector of Rucking, of which as well as this rectory he was deprived.
(q) He was likewise Rector of Ripple, and Curate of Walmer.
(s) And Rector of Ripple by dispensation.
(t) Patron of this rectory; collated by the Archbishop on his own petition.