Robert Clutterbuck

History and Antiquities of the Country of Hertford Icheton,

Lefstanchirche otherwise Layston Vol III pages 427 to 438


THIS Parish is bounded on the North by Buckland, on the South by Westmill, on the East by Great and Little Hormead, and on the West by Aspeden and Throcking. The site of the village of Layston lay formerly near the Church, which stands in the fields, about half a mile, to the East of Buntingford, as hath been proved by the discovery of foundations of houses in the fields near the road leading Northward from the windmill to the Church; and the old village probably was first deserted, and the village of Buntingford formed, in consequence of the road from London through Royston, being diverted from its former course near the Church, and formed in its present course Westward, through the valley. Parishes, as has been already observed, are ecclesiastical and not civil divisions of territory; and, as Layston does not appear ever to have been a Manor, we find no notice of it in the Book of Domesday, which is a territorial survey. The owners of Corney have always been Patrons of the Church of Layston, as far as evidences extend back; and, by what is after stated, there appears to have been a Church, here as early as the reign of King Stephen. The lands in this vill formed, at the time of the Conquest, part of the possessions of the Bishop of Baieux, Earl Eustace, Walter Eudo, the son of Hubert, Peter de Valongies, and Hardwin de Scalers.


THE lands: which formed this Manor belonged to Earl Eustace, at the time of the Conquest, and are thus recorded in Domesday Survey :

Robert holds of the Earl one hide in Corney, There is land to one plough, and it is there, with four bordars, and four cottagers, and two bondmen. Meadow for half a plough. Pasture for the cattle. Pannage for ten hogs. In the whole it is worth thirteen shillings and four pence ; when received ten shillings ; in King Edward's time twenty shillings. Aluuard, a vassal of Earl Harold, held one virgate of this land, and might sell it; and Gode, a vassal of King Edward, held three virgates of this land, and might sell them. Of custom, they render to the Sheriff three pence, or three parts of one average (a).

Besides this land, there is half a hide of land in Ichetone, held by Rumold, and twenty acres there held by two knights or soldiers, which were of the fee of Earl Eustace, and might be parts of this Manor ; they are thus recorded in Domesday Survey:

Rumold holds of the Earl half a hide in Icheton. There is land to one plough. There is one bordar there. It is worth twenty shillings; when received forty shillings; and the same in King Edward's time. Godid, a vassal of Asgar, Master of the Horse, held this land, and might sell it. In the same village, two Knights hold of the Earl twenty acres. There is land to two oxen, and they are there. It is and always was worth three shillings. Godid, a vassal of Asgar, Master of the Horse, held this land, and might sell it (b).

(a) In Cornei tenet Robertus de Comite unam hidam. Terra est' unius carucae, et ibi est, cum quatuor bordariis, et quatuor cotariis et duobus servis. Pratum dimidiae carucse. Pasture ad pecudes. Silva decem porcis. Inter totum valet tresdecim solidos et quatuor denarios ; quando recepit decem solidos, tempore Regis Edwardi viginti solidos. De hac terra tenuit Aluuard homo Hereldi unam virgatam, et vendere potuit. Et Godo, homo Regis Edwardi, habuit tres virgatas, et vendere potuit. De consuetudine reddebant vicecomiti tres denarios, aut tres partes unius averae. Lib. Domesday, N° XVII. fo. 137.

(b) In Ichetone tenet Rumoldus de Comite dimidiam hidam. Terra est unius carucae. Ibi est unus bordarius. Valet viginti solidos; quando recepit quadraginta solidos; et tantummodo tempore Regis Edwardi. Hanc terram tenuit Godidus homo Asgari Stalri, et vendere potuit. In eadem villa tenent duo Milites de Comite viginti acras. Terra est duobus bobus, et ibi sunt. Valet et valuit semper tres solidos. Hanc terram tenuit Godidus homo Asgari Stalri, et vendere potuit. Ibid.


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