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History of Tolleshunt Knights
All Saints Church, Tolleshunt Knights,
Photograph by kind permission of Robert Edwards,
contributor to the Geograph Project
History of Tolleshunt Knights >> White's Directory 1848
White's Directory of Essex 1848
TOLLESHUNT KNIGHTS is a parish of scattered houses mostly on high ground, 7 miles North East of Maldon, and 11 miles South South West of Colchester. It includes part of Tiptree Heath, and contains 313 souls, and 1921 acres of land, in two manors. The soil is chiefly a tenacious red clay and partly a gravelly loam. Barnwalden, now called Barn Hall manor, belonged to Ralph Baynard, at the Domesday Survey, and afterwards passed to the Fitzgilbert, Pattteshall, Lee, Morley, and Parker families, and was sold about 1680, by Thomas Parker, the last Lord Morley, to an ancestor of its present owner, Thomas N. Abdy, Esq. Barn Hall is a large farm house commanding extensive prospects over Mersey Island and the sea. A fabulous legend, current among the people of the neigbbourhood. says, one of the early lords of this manor attempted to build the original hall upon a moated site of two acres, which is still surrounded by water and covered with brushwood. the tradition says his satanic majesty interfered, and taking up a beam of timber, threw it a distance of a mile, to the spot where the present hall "stands, saying,- "Where this beam fall, shall stand Barn Hall." Huntley Bacon, Esq., is lord of the manor of Brook Hall, which was held by St. Osyth Priory, and afterwards by the Cromwell, Cleve, Spencer, Compton, Fox, and Osborne families. The present hall is a large farm house. built in 1826, near the brook, from which it has its name. C.J. Wilkin, Robert Keys, W. Harrington, Richard Seabrook. and several smaller owners have estates here, mostly free and partly copyhold. The parish appears to lie in the line of a Roman Road which passed from Colchester to Maldon, and in it several ancient pavements have been dug up.
The Church (All Saints,)is a small antique fabric, with a wooden belfry and two bells. In the chancel is the dilapidated effigy of a knight templar, and some defaced monuments of the Patteshull family, whose arms appear in the east window. The rectory, valued in K.B. at £16.13s.5d., and in 1831 at £493, is in the patronage of the Lord Chancellor, and incumbency of the Rev. C.W. Carwardine, M.A., who has a good residence and 63A.1R.9P. of glebe. The tithes were commuted in 1841, for £540 per annum. In 1635, Anthony Abdy gave 12A.lR.39P. of land, in Tollesbury, in trust, to distribute two-thirds of the rent among eight poor people of this parish, and one-third among four of Virley parish. This land is now let for £15 a year. The £10 belonging to eight poor persons of this parish is distributed by the churchwardens in weekly doles of bread.
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