Kendal Ward

Kentmere Index


The History and Antiquities

of the Counties of Westmorland and Cumberland

By Joseph Nicolson, Esq.; and Richard Burn, LL.D.

Printed for W. Strahan; and T. Cadell in the Strand, London 1777

Page 134: KENTMERE:

This place hath its name from the river Kent, which springs there, and from a mere or lake therein called Kentmere; which said river gives name not only to this particular district, but to all the south-west part of this county, called Kendale. It springs about 3 miles north from the chapel and from thence runs southward through Kentmere, Staveley, Strickland, the township of Kendal, by Natland, Helsington, Levins, and from thence into the sea. It receives in its course two small rivers, Sprit and Mint. The former springs in Long Sleddale, and runs in at Burneshead. The other springs in Fawcet Forest, and in its course meets with Grayrig water which springs above the hall, and falls into Kent about a mile above Kendal.

Kentmere is bounded on the east by the chapelry of Long Sleddale, on the south by the chapelries of Staveley and Ings, on the west by the top of Garburne Fell, and on the North by Patterdale in the parish of Barton and Mardale in the parish of Shap.

In the partition of the BRUS estate, amongst the four sisters and coheirs of the last Peter de BRUS, about the 11 Ed. I. Margaret the eldest had that which is now called the Marquis Fee; Agnes the second had no share in Westmorland (her portion, being assigned to her in Lancashire and Yorkshire): Lucy the third sister had that which is now called the Lumley Fee; and Ladarine the fourth sister had Kentmere.

This Ladarine was married to John de BELLA-AQUA, and had issue two daughters coheirs; Sibil married to Miles de STAPLETON, and Johan married to AUCHERUS son of Henry.

The said Miles de STAPLETON, by Sibil his wife, had a son Nicholas de STAPLETON, between whom the said Johan (his aunt) in the 5 Ed. 2, a partition was made in chancery of the inheritance; by which partition, the manor of Kentmere (besides divers estates in Yorkshire therein mentioned) were to remain to Nicholas.

The said Nicholas had a son and heir Miles de STAPLETON, who in the 21 Ed. 3 paid his fine to the king for his relief; and amongst other particulars, for a certain chase called Kentmere, which Nicholas father of the said Miles held of the King in capite, by hereditary descent after the death of Miles STAPLETON grandfather of the present Miles, as the third part of the inheritance of Peter de BRUS in the barony of Kendale, being that part which had belonged to Ladarine fourth daughter and coheir of Peter de BRUS, which came to the said Miles, the grandfather in right of Sibilla his wife first daughter and heir of the said Ladarine.

In the 47 Ed. 3 on the inquisition post mortem of Thomas de STAPLETON, the jurors find, that the said Thomas died seised of the manor of Kentmere to him and the male of his body; remainder to Brian de STAPLETON knight; remainder to Miles de STAPLETON son of Miles; remainder to the right heirs of the said Thomas. And the jurors say, that the said Thomas died without heir male of his body and that the said Brian is heir of the said Thomas of the manor aforesaid by the intail aforesaid: And that Elizabeth wife of Thomas de METHAM knight is sister and heir of the said Thomas de STAPLETON, and of the age of 24 years and upwards.

The said Brian had a son Thomas de STAPLETON, who lived in the reign of king Henry the sixth. And on an inquisition of knights fees in the sixth year of that king, it was found, that Thomas de STAPLETON (then in wardship of the king), son and heir of Brian de STAPLETON, held of the king in capite Kentmere in Kendale with the appurtenances, by the service of the 4th part of one knight’s fee (All this concerning the Stapletons Mr. Machel had from Dugdale’s MSS.).

This manor of Kentmere continued in the name and family of Stapleton till the reign of king Charles the first; when Gilbert STAPLETON, in the year 1626, sold the same to Nicholas FISHER of Stanebank Green gentleman.

The arms of STAPLETON were; Argent, a lion rampant Sable.

Henry FISHER, a descendent of the said Nicholas FISHER, devised the manor of Kentmere to be sold; and the same was accordingly purchased, in the year 1745, by Thomas WILSON of Kendal gentleman, by whom it was devised to his younger son the present owner Thomas FENWICK esquire; which name of Fenwick he took by act of parliament, in pursuance of the last will and testament of Robert FENWICK of Burrow-hall in the county of Lancaster esquire.

The whole number of tenements originally in this manor was sixty; that is, the lands were apportioned and set out for the sustentation of sixty soldiers: and the vestiges of this establishment yet remain. The manor is divided into four quarters; each quarter into fifteen tenements; each tenement consists of a proportionable quantity of inclosed ground, with pasture for ten cattle in a common pasture lying within each quarter respectively, and privilege for 80 sheep in another pasture common to the whole manor; and for each tenement a man serves the office of constable, pays 2 s. a year to the curate of the chapel, and 13s 4d rent to the lord of the manor. So where a man has two tenements, he serves the office of constable two years; or if he has half a tenement, he joins with another who has also half a tenement, for the finding a constable for one year. And so of the rest in like proportion. One of which ancient military tenements, at the present improved value, may be deemed to be worth about 10/ a year.

Having deduced this manor of Kentmere, from its first separation from the barony of Kendal at large to the present time, we find no room for a family which hitherto has been supposed to have been lords of this manor for several generations. Inhabitants within Kentmere they undoubtedly wee, and had a considerable estate there; but lords of the manor they could not be – These were of the name of GILPIN.

Bishop Carleton, in his life of that eminent preacher Bernard GILPIN, begins his account of this family with Richard GILPIN, who (he says) in the time of King John had Kentmere given to him by one of the barons of Kendal, for his extraordinary services both in war and peace. And this is that Richard (he says) who signalized himself in killing a wild board, which had infested the neighbouring parts, and done much mischief. In memory whereof, the Gilpins bear in their arms a boar to this day.

That there was some person of this name who performed such exploit, is very probable, as well from the said bearing on their escutcheon, as from universal tradition. But that the baron of Kendal at that time gave Kentmere unto him, cannot be asserted. Gilbert son of Roger FITZ-REINFRED had then the whole barony, and it continued intire for many years after that. And when Kentmere at last was separated from the rest, it passed to a grand-daughter of the said Gilbert, in whose posterity it continued (as hath appeared) till the reign of king Charles the first, and then passed into other hands. So that the GILPINS never had the manor of Kentmere. The mansion-house, which is called Kentmere-hall, they had, and also a considerable estate in land; but not so early (as it seemeth) as the reign of king John. The learned prelate above mentioned observes that Richard was the sixth ancestor in the ascending line from the said Bernard who flourished in the reign of queen Elizabeth which comprehends the space of about 350 years; and it will scarcely be found in any instance that so few descents have happened so long a tract of time. The highest that we can reasonably ascend in the sixth degree upwards from the said Bernard, is to about the reign of king Edward the third, and the evidences that have occurred to us seem to favour this calculation.

  1. The first in their own family pedigree is the aforesaid Richard GILPIN, who is supposed to have killed the wild board above mentioned. He had a son,
  2. William GILPIN; who married a daughter of Thomas AYRAY, bailiff of Kentmere. In the 48 Ed. 3 this William was one of the jurors on the inquisition post mortem of Thomas de THWENG: And in the next year, after the death of Joan de COUPLAND, he had issue,
  3. Richard GILPIN: who married a daughter of Fleming of Coningston, and by her had issue, William, John, Robert, Margaret, and Isabel. From John and Robert many GILPINS about Kendal are descended.
  4. William GILPIN, son and heir of Richard. He was a man eminent in his time. He married Elizabeth daughter of Thomas LANCASTER of Sockbridge; and had issue, Richard, Thomas, Edward, Oliver, and three daughters married to BELLINGHAM, ASKEW and AGLIONBY. He flourished in the reign of king Edward the fourth.
  5. Richard GILPIN, son and heir of William. He married Dorothy THORNBURGH; and had issue, William, Edwin, Sabergh, Caber, Grisslat, Giles, Ambrose, and four daughters married to LANCASTER, DICKSON, BATEMAN and BIRKHEAD. He died in the reign of king Richard the third.
  6. William GILPIN, son and heir of Richard. He was a captain at the battle of Bosworth-field, and was their slain. And having died without issue, he was succeeded by his brother.
  7. Edward GILPIN: who married Margaret daughter of Thomas LAYTON of Dalemain, and by her had issue, William, George, Randolph, Bernard, Richard, and three daughters, Cicely, Mary, and Margaret, married to MAUD, WHAETON, and SELTHORP. He married a second time and had issue by that second marriage, Randolph, Christabel, and Helen.
  8. George, the second son above mentioned, was ambassador of queen Elizabeth to the States of Holland.

    Bernard, the fourth son, was the famous preacher above mentioned, whose life was set forth by his contemporary Dr. CARLETON, bishop of Chichester. He was entered in Queen’s college in Oxford in the 25 Hen. 8 and was afterwards removed to Christ Church in that university, being one of the first scholars upon that foundation. He was collated by Tunstal bishop of Durham (who was his mother’s uncle) to the rectory of Houghton. He was learned, pious, charitable, and indefatigable in preaching and doing good. On the death of Oglethorp bishop of Carlisle, the queen offered to him that fee, which he refused, though strongly solicited to accept it by his kinsman Edwin SANDES bishop of Worcester, afterwards archbishop of York. He published a sermon which he had preached before King Edward the sixth, concerning the robbery of the churches.

  9. William GILPIN, son and heir of Edwin, married Elizabeth daughter and coheir of Thomas WASHINTON gentleman; and had issue George and six other sons, and seven daughters, married to GILPIN, LAYTON, WHARTON, COWPER, CARUS, BENSON and MALLORY.
  10. George GILPIN, son and heir of William was twice married to two of his tenants daughters; and had issue.
  11. William GILPIN, who married to his first wife Dorothy daughter of Sir Richard SANDFORD of Howgill, and by her had a son George. To his second wife he married Magdalen daughter of DANBY of Masham, and by her had issue, Christopher, John, Elizabeth, Mary, Margaret and Anne.
  12. George GILPIN married Catharine daughter of Robert PHILIPSON of Hollinghall gentleman; but had no issue. He was succeeded by his half-brother as next in tail, viz.
  13. Christopher GILPIN, in whom the direct male line ended. He had a daughter and heir married to Nathanael NICHOLSON of Hawkshead-hall; who had a son Daniel NICHOLSON; who had issue two daughters coheirs, 1. Beatrix married first to Mr. SANDS of Graythwaite attorney at law, to whom she had a child that died young; to her second husband she married Mr. John COPLEY attorney at law, nigh Egremont, to whom she had children. 2. Judith, married to Mr. George CARUS of Sellet nigh Kirkby Lonsdale – But the estate was sold to Sir Christopher PHILIPSON of Crooke.

The arms of Gilpin were: Or, a boar passant Sable, armed Gules.

The said Sir Christopher PHILIPSON had three daughters coheirs; who sold the estate to Sir Daniel FLEMING of Ridal baronet. Which Sir Daniel devised the fame to his son Richard FLEMING esquire, from whom it hath descended to his three daughters and coheirs, Catherine wife (now widow) of George CUMPSTONE of Ambleside gentleman, Barbara and Isabella, both now living and unmarried.

The hall is an old building, with a tower, standing under a vast craggy mountain.

The chapel is erected nigh the hall, about 12 miles north from the parish church. The ancient salary thereof is 6/ a year, being an assessment after the rate of 1s for every noble of rent paid to the lord.

Besides which, about 30 years ago, an allotment of 200/ of queen Anne’s bounty fell to this chapel; with which an estate was purchased in Strickland Ketel, now let for 12/ a year.

Towards a further augmentation, the executors of the will of the late Dr. STRATFORD gave 100/, and the inhabitants added thereto another 100/ being most of it charity money given by divers persons to the aid chapelry; whereby having procured 200/ from the governors of the said bounty, an estate in Whitwell and Patton called Patton Folds was purchased for the sum of 400/, now let for about 20/ a year.

Dr. AYRAY, provost of Queen’s College in Oxford, was born in this chapelry; and bequeathed to the same 40s a year for a monthly sermon.


After the death of Peter de BRUS the dale of Kentmere was assigned to the pourparty of John de BELLEWE (De Bella Aqua) and Laderine his wife, one of the sisters and co-heirs of the said Peter; Cal. Close R. 1272, pp. 4, 40.


John de KENTMER, a juror; Lancs. Inq., pt. i, 236


John de BELLEWE assigned Kentmere to Thomas de BELLEWE without licence; Cal. Close R. 1272, p. 378


Trans. of C&WA&AS, vol. LXXXV, p.110 article on medieval Kendal: ". in 1274 there was a water-mill and a fulling mill (worth only 8 marks as the tenants of Kentmere no longer owed it suit."


Thomas de BELLEWE surrendered to John de BELLEWE, his brother, all the land in cos. Lancaster and Westmorland, that he had of John’s gift; ib. 1276, p. 417


The dale of Kentmere, lately alienated to Thomas de BELLEWE, without the King’s licence, is restored to John de BELLEWE, ib., 378


Roger de LANCASTRE impleaded Richard de CROSSEDALE, Thomas son of Robert de CROSSEDALE, Hamon son of Ralph FLEMYNG, Nicholas de DESPENSER, Adam del PARRE and others for entering his free chace at Grisedale and Kentmere without licence, chasing and taking deer. De Banco R., Easter, 49, m. 51.


John de BELLEWE held at his death the dale of Kentmere in Kendale (extent given) of the king in chief for the 6th part of a knight’s fee. Nicholas, son of Isabel, daughter of the said John and Laderine his wife, sometime the wife of Miles de STAPLETON, deceased, aged 15, and Joan another daughter of John and Laderine, aged 24, are his heirs; Cal. Inq., iv, 26.


After the death of John de BELLEWE, tenant by the courtesy of England after the death of Laderana his wife (dead in 1308) of inter alia the manor of Kentmere, of the inheritance of Nicholas de STAPLETON, son and heir of Sibyl, one of the daughters and heirs of the said Laderana, and of Joan, wife of Aucher FITZ-HENRY, another daughter and heir of Laderana, the said manor was assigned to the pourparty of Nicholas de STAPLETON, after he had proved his age; Cal. Close R. 1311, p. 440.


Licence to Nicholas de STAPELTON to demise to Miles de STAPELTON, for his life, the manors of Carleton by Snaithe and Kentmere; Cal. Patent R. 1312, p. 493.

1332 Lay Subsidy

The earliest comprehensive tax assessment for Westmorland. The Lay Subsidy for 1332 was one of a series of national taxes granted in parliament to the King in certain years to augment royal revenue from the regular sources of wool customs, land rents and feudal dues and services. The usual reason for such additional taxation was outstanding war expenses, and in 1332 Edward III was concerned to support and consolidate the claim of Edward de Balliol to the throne of Scotland. Parliament in September 1332 granted the king a tenth and fifteenth part of the value of moveable goods and chattels possessed by every layman within the realm, the inhabitants of boroughs and ancient demesne to pay the larger proportion of a tenth, and those of the rural districts the lesser of a fifteenth. Men, however, whose effects were valued at less than 10s. in the country or than 6s. in the towns, were to be exempt. In each county throughout England assessors and collectors were appointed by the king’s council, and the men selected for Westmorland were John de Derwentwater and William Fauvel, although in the event Fauvel was unable to act and Ralph de Bethum took his place. These men all had in varying degrees experience of royal service.

Having taken their oath to assess well and faithfully the goods of the men of the realm and to collect the tax according to the instructions given to them, the commissioners dispersed to their allotted county, armed with a writ of aid to the respective sheriff. The actual assessment was made by men of each borough or village, themselves chosen from a panel by the county commissioners, and the valuation was to be based on the true value of all goods possessed by the individual concerned on 29 September (Michaelmas Day). Allowance would be made, however, for personal effects such as for the villager (by custom) his clothing, household goods, food in the larder (and not for sale), his plough, small carts, rakes and spades.


The entry for Kentmere is as follows:-

William de AYRA in goods £10

William de HOGAYL in goods 30s.

John de AYRA in goods 37s. 6d.

William de BROCKEBANKE in goods 30s.

John son of HAWE in goods 15s.

John ORMOUN in goods 45s.

Gilbert de AYRA in goods 20s.

Robert de TROUTHALE in goods £4 10s.

Thomas de BROCKEBANKE in goods 45s.

John son of CHRISTIANA in goods 15s.

Gilbert son of JOHN in goods 35s.

Richard BROUNE in goods 20s.

Peter de COUPLAND in goods 30s.

Roger de AYRA in goods 75s.

Nicholas MAKEREL in goods 22s. 6d.

15 taxpayers for a total assessment of £35 10s. 1d, whereof to the King (£2 9s. 4d.); Excheq., Lay Sub., Westmld., 195, 1A.

Here, despite the nominal lordship of Nicholas STAPLETON, the leading resident family was that of AYRAY, whose members William, John, Gilbert and Roger collectively were assessed at £16 12s. 6d. or nearly half the total for the manor. By tradition William GILPIN, ancestor of the distinguished Westmorland family, married a daughter of Thomas AYRAY, bailiff of Kentmere sometime in the reign of Edward III and this match may be the origin of the GILPIN prosperity (N&B History of Westmorland, 1777, I p. 136).


Nicholas de STAPELTON, knt., gives £4 for licence to make an agreement with Miles de STAPELTON and Isabel his wife respecting the manor of Assheton next Lancastre and other manors in other counties; De Banco R., Mich., 316, m. 473d.


The same Nicholas demands against Roland de PATTON and John his son and others 100 a. of moor in Stirkland Ketill; ib. Trin. 319, m. 34od.


Nicholas de STAPELTON held at his death the dale of Kentmere of the king in chief by the service of part of a barony; Miles his son, of full age, is his next heir; Cal. Inq., viii, 299.


John de WASSINGTON of Warton impleaded Baldwin le WALKER of Ulvethwayt of trespass at Kentmere; De Banco R., Hil. Term, 43 Edward III, m. 185d.


Miles de STAPELTON of Hathelsay, chivaler, died seised of the soil and herbage of a several dale called Kentmere, lying in the bailiwick of Kendale with free chace of the "salvaine" (wild beasts of the chase) within the dale; there are tenants at will who hold the herbage and several pastures of the dale for 40 marks yearly rent, according to the ancient customs of the forest of Kendale; there is a pool there with the fish. The dale is held of the king in chief as of the crown by homage and the service of an 8th part of a moiety of the manor of Kirkeby in Kendale in barony, as of the inheritance of Peter de BRUYS. Thomas de STAPLETON, his son, aged 22 years, is his heir; Inq. P.m., 46 Edward III, 1st nos., n. 59 (Rawlinson’s MS.)


Thomas de STAPELTON gave £40 for licence to enfeoff John LEGET, clerk, and others of his manors of Carleton by Snaith and Kentmere; Abbrev. R. Original, ii, 328.

Inquest taken at Kirkeby in Kendale, 5 March, 47 Edward III (1373) by the oath of John de BURGH, Robert de DOKWRA, Henry de GNYP, William DAUNAY, William de (GYLPIN), Richard WALKER of Kirkeby, William de AURA (?AYRA), Richard (KAYR)ROUS, John de LEKE, Roger de STIRKELAND, John de STIRKELAND of BR… and Thomas GODMOND, who say that it is not to the king’s hurt if he grant to Thomas de STAPLETON to enfeoff certain persons (named) of the manor of Kentmere etc. Tenure and value as in 1372; Chan. Inq. Ad quod damnum, file 382, n. 15.

Inquest taken at Kirkeby in Kendale on Sat. after St. Luke the Evangelist, 47 Edward III (22 Oct., 1373), by the oath of John de YORKE, John del CHAMBRE, Richard KAYRROUS, Adam de MIDLETON, William DANNAY, William GILPYN, Roger de STIRKELAND, Adam BARBOUR, Thomas CROISSER, John de MANNESSER, Matthew de NIANDESSER and Robert …, who say that Thomas de STAPLETON died seised of the manor of Kentmere to him and the heirs male of his body, remainder to Brian de STAPLETON, chivaler, in tail male, remainder to Miles son of Miles de STAPLETON in tail male, by the gift and grant of John LEGET, parson of the church of Melshamby, William de BRUNE and William de BIRKYN, chaplains, and John de HOLM, chivaler, who had the same by the feoffment of the said Thomas de STAPLETON, licenced by Patent, 28 July, 47 Edward III. Thomas died without heir male and Brian survives and is heir by the said entail. The manor is held (etc. as in 1372) and is worth in all issues 40 marks. Elizabeth, wife of Thomas de METHAM, chivaler, is sister and next heir of the said Thomas de STAPLETON, aged 24 years (26 years in the Lancs. Inq.); Inq. p.m. 47 Edward III, 1st nos., n. 32

Thomas de STAPLETON of Carleton (by DRAX), co. York, held at his death the manor of Kentmere to him and the heirs male of his body by the feoffment of certain trustees, with remainder to Brian de STAPLETON and the heirs male of his body; the same Thomas died without issue male; the said manor was delivered to the said Brian de STAPELTON, chivaler; Cal. Close R. 1373, p. 513; Cal. Pat. R. 1373, p. 283. (Miles, son of Miles de STAPELTON, knt., was in the remainder after Brian.)


William GILPIN who lived in the Kentmere valley married a daughter of Thomas AYRAY, the bailiff.


John de WASHYNGTON of Warton in Michaelmas term, 4 Richard II, impleaded William HOGESON of AYRAH and another for seizure of mares and cows at Kentmere; De Banco R., No. 480, m. 341d.


During the minority of Brian, son and heir of Brian de STAPELTON, chivaler, deceased, the custody of the manor of Kentmere, value £46 yearly, was committed to Richard REDEMAYNE, chivaler, with custody of the manor of Carleton, co. York, value £70 yearly, without rendering anything, in recompense of his fee in arrear; Cal. Pat. R., 1403, p. 253.


Inquest taken at Appelby on Monday after St. Matthew the Apostle, 5 Henry v (20 Sep., 1417) before Rolland de THORNEBURGH, escheator in co. Westmorland. The jurors say that Brian de STAPLETON, chivaler, held at his death the manor of Kentmere in Kendale of the king in chief by knight’s service, worth £16 6s. 8d. yearly. Brian de STAPLETON, his son, aged 5 years and upwards on Friday after St. Leonard last past (12 Nov., 1416) is his next heir. Brian, the father, died 13 October last past; Inq. p.m., 5 Henry v, n. 22.


Robert AYRA paid 5s. for farm of the tithe of Kentmere (as also in 1435); R. at Levens.


Agnes STAPILTON, late the wife of Brian STAPLTON, knt., held in dower at her death inter alia a moiety of the manor of Kentmere with the members of the king in chief by the service of a 20th part of a knight’s fee. Brian STAPLETON, knt., her son, is her next heir; Chan. Inq. p.m. 26 Henry vi, n. 14.


Earliest known mention of Kentmere Church. (Dealing with the theories as to the Norman origin of this building, Mr. McIntire stated that the earliest mention he could find of the church was in a deed of 1453, relative to the neighbouring Brockstone farm. It was then a chapel under Kendal.) The thickness of its walls might give some support to the tradition that it had once been a fortified church. He mentioned some of the benefactors of the church, amongst whom were the AIREYs a family connected with Kentmere from the 14th century onwards.


Brian STAPYLTON, knt., held at his death the manor of Kentmere in Kendale of the king in chief by the service of the 5th (sic) part of a knight’s fee, worth £16 6s. 8d. yearly. Brian STAPILTON, his son, aged 12 years is his next heir; Chan. Inq. P.m., 6 Edward iv, n. 28.


Bernard GILPIN, the "Apostle of the North" born at Kentmere Hall.


1 January.

The Will of Sir Brian STAPLETON of Burton Joyce, knt., in which he leaves to his younger son, Brian STAPLETON, for the term of his life, the manor of Kentmere, valued at £40 8 s. Surtees Socy. vol. 106, p. 217


Transactions of the C&WA&AS, volume LXXXVIII Art. XI An early curate (Christopher DAWSON) of Torver by Janet D. Martin. Christopher died in 1605. His will names people living in Kentmere including AIRAYs. (p123)


Inquest taken at Kirkbye Kendall, 26 September, 15 James I (1617) before James BELLINGHAM, knight, John LOWTHER, esq., Roger OTWAY, gent., and Robert Curwen, gentleman, Feodary of co. Westmoreland, by the oath of Robert PHILIPSONE, John WARDE, Samuel KNIPE, Edward MOORE, Thomas BRIGGES, Peter BIRKETT, John HARRYSONE, Peter MAWSONE, Thomas ATKINSONE, Anthony GILPIN, James MAWSONE, Thomas GILPIN, John CHAMBER, Allan STEVENSONE and William DENISONE, gentlemen, who say that: George GILPIN, esq., of Kentmere was seised of a capital messuage called "Kentmere Hall" in Kentmere and 300 acres of land thereto belonging, also of one 5th part of that waste, moor, or common pasture called "Dalehead", in 5 parts to be divided, in Kentmere, also of a fishing from a place called "le Banckefoote" as far as the end of a bridge called "Kentes Brigge" to the said capital messuage belonging; also of one 4th part of the manor of Staveley in Staveley; also of 4 messuages and tenements in Strickland Kettle and Strickland Roger in possession of several tenants there; also of 3 cottages in the "Burgagio" of Kendall in a place called "le Ratten Rowe lane" (Routine Row, so named because the possession of "The Host" was taken by that route in burials from Soutergate to the old cemetery at Kirkbarrow. It is now Captain French lane.) in possession of several tenants; also of 3 messuages in Penrith co. Cumberland; and of 8 messuages in Ulthwaite, co. Westmorland and 30 acres of land belonging to the capital messuage there; also of a water grain mill and fulling mill there and the fishing of the water of Kent there; also of 9 messuages and tenements in Ristone and Newgate in possession of several tenants.

The said George GILPIN so thereof seised, in consideration of the marriage of his son and heir apparent William GILPIN to be made with Dorothy SANDFORTH, daughter of Richard SANDFORTH of Howgill Castle, esquire, and afterwards made, and in consideration of £300 or thereabouts paid to said George by said Richard, by his writing dated 18 Nov, 1595, for himself and his heirs granted to Richard SANDFORTH and his heirs that he (George) and his heirs should stand seised of the premised in Kentmere, Staveley, Strickland Kettle, Strickland Roger, Kendall and Penrith and all his lands and tenements in cos. Cumberland and Westmoreland and elsewhere for term of his (George’s) life and after his death to use of said William his son and heir and heirs male of the body of William by Dorothy, lawfully begotten. Afterwards George GILPIN granted and surrendered to said William GILPIN and his said heirs male the said messuage in Ulthwaite with the water grain mill and the fulling mill and fishery there and the messuages and tenements in Restone and Newgate and lands to them belonging. To have and to hold to William and his said heirs male in immediate possession. By virtue whereof William GILPIN entered 20 years and more ago and was from then seised in possession in his demesne as of fee tail.

George GILPIN being seised for term of his life of the rest of the premises on May 1, 10 James 1 (1612), demised and let to farm to William STEPHENSONE a close called Easeinge and Ewesbancke parcel of the premises and parcel of the demesne lands of the capital messuage called Kentmere Hall from said 1 May until 14 Oct. next following to be mown and depastured, and so Wm. STEPHENSONE took the said close for divers years before and after (sic) rendering yearly £4 6s. 8d. By virtue of which lease Wm. STEPHENSONE entered and was thereof possessed for the term aforesaid, the reversion thereof immediately belonging to said George GILPIN for term of his life. And so being possessed the said George GILPIN on 7 Oct., 10 James I (1612), without William STEPHENSONE’s consent, made a charter between him the said George GILPIN and Anthony HUTTONE, Randolph GILPIN and Miles BATEMAN as follows: Know &c. that I, George GYLPINGE of Kentmyer, esquire, for my love towards Richard GILPYNGE and George GILPINGE my younger sons and for the advancement of them and the heirs of their bodies have granted and by this charter confirmed to Anthony HUTTONE of Grayes Inne in Holborne, co. Middlesex esquire, Randolph GILPINGE my brother, and Miles BATEMAN all those messuages, lands etc. in Kentmyer parcel of my possessions or demesne lands called "le demaynes of Kentmyer, otherwise Mr. GILPINGE demaynes in Kentmere," more particularly named in my charter namely: 2 houses with curtilages called "le Banckehowses," 3 closes on the east of said houses called "les Banckhowse closes" and severally called "le Brery Close, le Myddestmest close and le Nethermost Close, le Great springe, le Easeinge, le Ewesbancke, le lowe Borwance, le Heigh Borwance," and those houses and buildings at "Parke yeate", and 3 closes adjoining said houses called "les Parke yeate Closes", and my pasture and land above "le Bancke houses" from "the Heigheste and North Corner of the Brery Close" as far as "le Middeste de le Walle" at "le Heighte de Whitsyde", and a moiety of the whole of my feeding land called "le Parke", and one 5th part of the whole of my land and pasture in Dalehead, with all and singular the appurtenances. To have and to hold to Anthony HUTTONE, Randulph GILPINGE and Miles BATEMAN their heirs and assigns to use of me George GILPINGE for my life and after my death to use of Richard GYLPINGE one of my younger sons and heirs male etc., and for default of such to use of George GILPINGE the other of my younger sons and heirs male etc., and for default of such then to use of right heirs of me the said George GILPINGE for ever, of the chief lords of that fee by the services therefor due and of right accustomed. And I and my heirs will warrant etc. Know moreover that I have part in my place John HODGESHON of Staveley my Bailiff in my name to enter the premises and take possession and in my name to deliver seisin to said Anthony HUTTONE and others etc. dated 7 Oct. 10 James I (1612).

By virtue of which letter of attorney John HODGESHON entered the close called "Ewesbancke" on said 7th Oct., William STEPHENSONE then being in possession and there delivered seisin thereof in the name of all lands specified in the charter. And George GILPIN being seised of the rest of the premises, afterwards, namely 27 March, 11 James I (1613) made another charter in these words: Know etc. that I, George GILPIN of Kentmyer, esq., as well in consideration of £20 paid to me by Miles BATEMAN of Underbarrowe, yeoman, as for my affection towards my younger sons Richard and George begotten by me of the body of Jane my wife, sister of said Miles BATEMAN, and for their advancement have granted and by this charter confirmed to Anthony HUTTONE, Ralph GILPINGE and Miles BATEMAN, that messuage and tenement in Strickland KETTLE and those 10 acres there commonly used with said messuage and now in tenure of Thomas STRICKLAND or his assigns, and a certain yearly rent of 10s. issuing from an ancient messuage and garden in Kendall in a street there called "Ratten Rawe streete" now in tenure of Nicholas CLARKE or his assigns, one other yearly rent of 8s. issuing from one other ancient messuage and garden in "Ratten Rawe streets" now in tenure of John DENNYSONE or his assigns, and also one other yearly rent of 7s. issuing from one other ancient messuage and garden in "Ratten Rawe streete" now in tenure of Richard HEGDALL or his assigns and all my charters, writings, and evidences concerning those premises. To have and to hold the messuage 10 acres and several rents to Anthony, Randulph and Miles their heirs and assigns to use of Richard GILPINGE one of my said sons and his heirs male etc. and in default of such to use of George GILPINGE the other of my said sons and his heirs male etc. and for default of such to use of my right heirs for ever, of the chief lords, etc. etc., and I and my heirs will warrant etc. etc., and I have put in my place my bailiff John HODGESON to take possession of the premises and, such possession had, to deliver seisin to Huttone and the others etc. Dated 27 March, 11 James 1 (1613).

After making these deeds George GILPIN re-entered the premises and was thereof seised and so died.

The capital messuage of Kentmyer with the appurtenances is held of the king in chief by knight service by 100th part of a knight’s fee and is worth yearly clear £4. The one fourth part of the manor of Staveley is held of the king by knight service and is worth yearly clear 30s. The lands and tenements in Strickland Kettle and Strickland Roger are held of the king by knight service as of the manor Kirkeby Kendal and are worth yearly clear 10s. Premises in Penrith held of king as of his manor of Penrith in socage, worth yearly clear 2s. The 7 messuages in Ulthwaite, Ristone and Newgate are held of the heirs and assigns of Peter BRUSE by a rent of 12 barbed arrows and 2s. 6d. in free socage for all secular services. (The tenure of the messuages &c in "Ratten Rawe Streete" in Kendall from which the rents issue, is not mentioned in the document.)

George GILPINGE died 4 March last (1616-7) and William GILPINGE is his son and heir aged 39 years, 10 months now. Chanc. Inq. p. mort., ser. ii, vol. 373, n. 78.


Among the contributions to the King from the clergy toward the recovery of the Palatinate of the Rhine, Mr. Burrow curate of Kentmere paid 4s. Lanc. Record Society, vol. xii, p. 69 and Curwen's records, 1926 as above.


Gilbert STAPLETON sold Kentmere to Nicholas FISHER, of Stainbank Green, gentleman. Nicolson and Burn, i. 135.


Inquest taken at Kirkby Kendall, 10 September, 3 Charles I (1627), before Roger OTWAY, esquire, escheator, by the oath etc., who say that William GILPIN, esq., was seised in his demesne of fee tail, namely to himself and his heirs male by his wife Dorothy of a capital messuage called "Kentmer Halle" in Kentmer and of 40 acres of land arable meadow and pasture and 100 acres of wood and moor thereto belonging, and of a fifth part of the whole of that waste or common pasture called "le Dalehed", in 5 parts to be divided , in Kentmer, and of the fishery in a place called "le Bancksate", as far as the end of a bridge called "Kent bridge Ende" to the said capital messuage belonging. And of a water corn mill and 6 messuages and tenements in Ulthwaite in the tenure of divers customary tenants there. And of 3 messuages and tenements in Penrith co. Cumberland in possession of several tenants there.

So seised William GILPIN died 16 September last (1626). George GILPIN is his son and heir, aged 30 years and upwards now. Court of Wards Inq. p. mort., vol. 79, n. 23.


Transactions of the C&WA&AS, Volume LXXIII, New Series, page 236: It appears that (Christopher) GILPIN on 3 March 1650 sold Kentmere Hall to Nathaniel NICHOLSON for £1,520, and in the same month, in order to defraud Nicholson conveyed the property to Mary PHILIPSON. Yet GILPIN afterwards married Nicholson’ dau., and it was alleged by Mary’s grandson, Sir Christopher PHILIPSON, that very little of the £1,520 was every paid, the conveyance being a bogus one to protect the property from sequestration. (Family members should read full article.)


Hearth Tax Roll; Lay Subsidy R. 195, n. 73

















































These persons following are discharged by Certificates Unpaid:




Joseph AEREY

George RIGG
















Ellinor AEREY


Ellinor GILPIN













Hearth Tax – Constablewick of Kentmere, Kendal Ward, Date of Survey: Feb. 22, 1674. Surveyor: HARLE, Reyn. Constable: ARAY, Rob.







Brockstone (4)


Foulehouse (1)


GILPIN, Catherine


ARAY, Gilbert


ARAY, Geo.


Pouthowe (4)






BECKE, Rich.


ARAY, Hugh


Hayrige (3)


GILPIN, Giflet




ARAY, Chr.


ARAY, Ellioner


Scale (2)




BATEMAN, Barbara


Wrack knowles (5)






The head (1)








Browtop (2)










Kentmere Hall (15)














Greenquarter (10)


ARAY, Joseph


ARAY, Chr.














ARAY, Robt.


ARAY, Marg.


Grovenooke (5)












WARD, Tho.











6 January

Transactions of the C&WA&AS, Volume LXXIII, New Series, p.250: Sir Christopher (PHILIPSON), then "of the Isle within the parish of Windermere" leased his moiety of the demesne lands of Kentmere Hall to George BIRKETT (CW2 xx 181).


Transactions of the C&WA&AS, Volume LXXIII, New Series, P. 259: Sir Christopher PHILIPSON trying to sell his estate and lands of Kentmere Hall.


Henry AIREY, by will, in 1708, gave to the poor of Kentmere £50, the interest to be distributed annually on the anniversary of his decease amongst the poor of the chapelry, with the exception of those of Wray West Quarter.


21 April

The private bridge leading from Green Quarter to Cragg Quarter called Low Bridge in Kentmere, in decay: Order that notice be given to the inhabitants of Kentmere to repair the same. K. Indictment Book, 1692-1724.


4 August.

Presentment, upon view of Rev. Hen. Fleming, D.D., J.P., that the highway in Kentmere, from the top of Garburne Pass to the bridge next below Kentmire Chapel, being about 1/2 mile, is so much out of repair that a great part of it is not passable for either man or horse to travel through that way, without danger of being bogged in the Moss, or lamed amongst the stones. Ordered that the inhabitants repair the said highway before Mich. Sessions next, under paid of £10. Ibid.


Henry Fisher, Esq. (descendant of Nicholas FISHER), devised Kentmere manor to be sold, and it was purchased, by Thomas WILSON of Kendal. The younger son of this last-named gentleman subsequently assumed the name of FENWICK. The manor was afterwards sold to the landowners.

1760 14 January

Upon the motion of Edw. RIGG of Kentmere Hall applying to be discharged from the office of constable of the township of Kentmere; it appeareth that Edw. RIGG did enter upon the said office in 1757, that on the testimony of Joseph PARK, aged 77 who had known the township for 58 years, that the said township consisteth of four quarters called Green Quarter, Hollowbank Quarter, Crag Quarter and Wrey Quarter, that he inhabited in Crag Quarter for 35 years, that every quarter consisteth of fifteen ancient tenements saving that three tenements have been taken from Wrey Quarter, in which Kentmere Hall is situated and added to Crag Quarter; that Crag Quarter now consisteth of 18 ancient tenements and only Kentmere Hall Estate remaineth in Wrey Quarter; that an ancient tenement consisteth of 10 cattles or cattle gates, i.e. hath privilege for 10 cattle to go in a common stinted pasture, that every quarter hath a distinct cattle pasture of its own, and that Kentmere Hall cattle pasture is in a separate inclosure by itself, that every such ancient tenement hath likewise a privilege for 80 sheep to go in a place called Dalehead, not divided or separated by any fences but in which every man knows his own sheep-heath distinguished by metes and bounds; that Kentmere Hall hath such Sheep-heath in the said Dale head; that for every quarter there is a grass-teller whose office is to take an account of each man's stint and that for so doing he hath privilege to put in 20 sheep, and that he hath heard the occupier of Kentmere Hall claim the same privilege of putting in 20 sheep as grass-teller. That for every 10 cattles is paid 13s. 4d. yearly rent to the Lady of the Manor, and 2s. yearly salary to the curate of the chapel; that the occupier of every ancient tenement consisting of 10 cattles, serveth or findeth one to serve the office of constable for one year, and so in proportion for five cattles.

That it was determined by the Justices about 50 years ago that widows shall join in finding a constable in proportion to their widows estate. That before 1757 he never knew the occupier of Kentmere Hall to serve any office whatsoever and it was said they were liable to no office, nor so much as to work at the highways, because they found a light horse in the Militia. That there is but one dwelling house upon Kentmere Hall Estate, but that there are old walls like house steads and he hath heard an ancient woman say that her mother was born in one of them.

Other deponents follow in a similar strain. William ATKINSON, clerk, deposed that he was curate of the Chapel of Kentmere for some few years, that the whole chapel salary throughout the said township amounteth to £6 a year and that the occupier of Kentmere Hall paid to him the sum of £1 4s. yearly. Robert AIREY deposed that he was born in and lived at Kentmere 36 years that the Hall Estate hath liberty for 900 sheep and upwards in the Dale Head. It appeareth further by a conveyance produced, with livery and seisin indorses, that Christopher GILPIN, in the year 1650 conveyed unto Nathaniel NICHOLSON all that his demesne, messuages, lands and capital tenements known as Kentmere Hall or Kentmere demesne of the annual rent of £10, and also all parks, forests, chaces, ponds, rivers, fishings, mines, quarries to hold, etc.

And the court being of opinion that the said custom of serving the office of Constable by rotation, according and in proportion to the number of ancient tenements within the said township, is a good custom, and that the estate called Kentmere Hall consisteth of 12 ancient tenements; do order that the said motion be rejected. K. Indictment Book, 1750-60. (Curwen’s Record of Kendale.)


15 July.

Presentment that there was and yet is a certain ancient highway leading from the town of Kentmere to a certain place called Dalehead, used for all the liege subjects of the King without any obstruction whatsoever and that on the 20 June a certain wall had been erected and fixed across the same in a certain part of the common highway called by the name of Nook Gate whereby the King's highway was totally obstructed and stopped, etc. and that Leonard COWPERTHWAITE and John SEWART of Kentmere, yeomen, with force and arms did unlawfully and obstinately uphold the same to the evil example of all others offending against the peace, etc. K. Indictment Book, 1750-60. (Curwen's Record of Kendale.)


6 October.

Petition of the surveyors of the highways in the township of Kentmere setting forth that the highways within the township are greatly out of repair and that the six days labour are insufficient to effectually repair the same; it is ordered that an assessment of 6d. in the pount be levied upon the several inhabitants, owners and occupiers, and in case of refusal or non payment within 10 days after demand thereof, to be levied by distress and sale of goods, etc. K.Order Book, 1760-70. (Curwen's Record of Kendale.)

On 12 July, 1768, and again on 18 January, 1771, similar petitions and Orders were issued. Ibid. and K. Order Book, 1770-80.


Robert NEWTON, by will, in 1769, bequeathed £60, the interest to be applied for the clothing of poor people in the township of Kentmere.


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