There is no mention of Stokenchurch in the Survey of 1086, but its later History points to its inclusion under the 20-Hides held by Norman Baron Miles Crispin in Aston Rowant (Estone) in Oxfordshire. In the middle 13thC Aston Rowant Manor was held of the Honour of Wallingford as ½ a Knights Fee, specified in 1279 as including the Hamlet of Stokenchurch. It continued under the Honour of Wallingford and afterwards under that of Ewelme, and this Overlordship is last mentioned in 1661.
Stokenchurch as a member of Aston Rowant Manor descended successively in the direct line from Haufray to Alan, Roald & Alan, and was held by the latter in 1279. By 1300 it had passed to his son John and by 1316 to another son Henry Fitz Alan. He was succeeded in 1318 by his son Roger. Later in the century, the Fitz Alan Rights had passed to Richard Champernowne, and his grandson Hugh Champernowne, then a Minor, was apparently the heir of Fitz Alan mentioned in 1428. No reference occurs to any Tenants Holding under the Fitz Alans, and the Manor may possibly not have been subinfeudated before it came to the Champernownes, since one Messuage, one Carucate of Land and Rent in Stokenchurch were held of the latter Family by Edmund de Chelrey, who received a Grant of Free Warren here in 1366 and died in 1372. His son Thomas succeeded but does not seem to have retained the Holding. It apparently corresponds to the Stokenchurch Manor held by John son of John Hardwick at his father’s death in 1394. The Manor appears to have reverted to the Champernownes as Lords of Aston Rowant & Sir Philip Champernowne, great-grandson of Hugh Champernowne, Granted Land on Lease in Stokenchurch in 1503 which he was still Holding in Fee in 1517. Aston Rowant Manor was afterwards acquired by Henry Courtenay Earl of Devon, who became Marquess of Exeter in 1525. He Sold it in exchange in 1528 to Thomas Unton, who also held Exchequers Manor in the Parish, and the settlement between his great-grandsons Edward & Sir Henry Unton in 1589 (Cadmore End, Fingest) included both Aston Rowant and Stokenchurch Manors. Sir Henry Unton, who had assigned Stokenchurch Manor during his life to Sir Henry Poole & Nicholas Payne, died in 1596, and in the following year, it was sold to John Rotherham of Great Marlow. It descended with Cublington (Bucks qv) to William Willoughby, who sold Stokenchurch Manor in 1630 to Henry Lee. He died Seised in 1632 during the Minority of his son Henry. Various people had interests in this Manor in 1642. It was afterwards acquired by John Clerke, who had married Rebecca daughter of the elder Henry Lee, and he made a settlement of it in 1651. Stokenchurch Manor descended in the direct line to his great-grandson John Clerke, who by his Will, proved in December 1771, settled the residue of his Property on his Widow Ann with remainder to his nephew, another John Clerke. He settled Stokenchurch Manor in 1787 in Trust on his wife Damaris for life, his brother Richard being next in the succession, and in 1824 it was Vested in Trustees by Richard Clerke’s widow Mary and their daughter Mary Elizabeth. The latter married Mr John Brown, and their grandson Mr Henry Clerke Brown, JP, of Kingston Blount in Aston Rowant, Oxfordshire, was the past Owner of this Manor. Some Manorial Court Rolls for the 16thC exist.
Dell Farm House. 17thC, altered. re-Fronted in Red & Vitreous Brick, probably 18thC but altered early 19thC, with old Tile Roof. 17thC Brick Chimney with attached Shafts, projecting nib & off-set head between left Bays; later Brick Chimney to right. 2-Storeys & Attic, 3- Bays. 4-light wooden Casements in left Bay; 19thC tripartite Sashes to remainder. Small paired wooden Casement to 1rst-Floor between left Bays over Lobby entry with 20thC Door & flat wooden Hood on brackets. Gables rebuilt in Flint & Brick. Rear is Triple Gabled, the left Bay projecting, the outer Bays with Timber-framing & Brick infill to Upper Storeys. Irregular paired barred wooden Casements.
OS Map Of Oxfordshire 1st Series
A 2nd Manor, Stockenchurch alias Mallats or Mallard’s Court Manor, originated in Land held under the Fitz Alans in the 13thC. It evidently derived its later name from Robert Malet, who in 1279 was holding one Virgate of land in this Parish, formerly Robert Brond’s, for 21s yearly. In 1295 soon after his death a Messuage and a Horse-mill are named in the Holding to which his son Robert succeeded. He was holding in 1316, but there is at present no trace of a later Descent of this Land in his Family. It reappears as the Manor of Stokenchurch Granted in 1399 by Andrew Norwich, Richard Moldrich and Godfrey Atte Pirye to Richard II and immediately transferred by him to Westminster Abbey. It was valued at £3-16s-8d yearly in 1535, when it was still owned by the Abbey.
After the Dissolution, this Manor was 1st Granted by the Crown in 1542 to Westminster Cathedral, but afterwards, in 1545, to Walter Hendle and Sir John Williams, a reserved rent of 6s 8d yearly being granted to the latter in 1546. Sir John Williams, afterwards Lord Williams of Thame, died seised in 1559, when his daughters and co-heirs were Isabel wife of Richard Wenman and Margery wife of Henry Norreys. Stokenchurch Manor was included in the Estates conveyed by mutual agreement to the latter in 1561, and was settled in 1576 by Henry, then Lord Norreys, on his son William on the marriage of the latter with Elizabeth Morison, daughter of Bridget Countess of Bedford by a former
husband. It Descended in the Barony of Norreys of Rycote, Oxfordshire, to Elizabeth daughter and heir of Francis Earl of Berkshire, suo jure Baroness Norreys and wife of Edward Wray. He with his wife conveyed it in 1627 to William Kenrick, who made a settlement of this Manor in 1631 and was succeeded in 1635 by his son Thomas. William son of Thomas Kenrick had succeeded his father before 1665 and was created a Baronet in 1679.
His son and successor, Sir William Kenrick, Bart, sold the Stokenchurch Estate in 1691 to John Mason. It remained in the Mason family for over 100 years. A settlement was made by a later John Mason in 1743 apparently on his marriage. The owners in 1811 were Thomas & John Mason, and they conveyed the Manor of Mallard’s Court in 1814 to Henry Mant. In the later 19thC Mallard’s Court was for many years in the Ownership of the Rev Henry Tufnell Young, and is now the Property of his Executors.
A 3rd Manor called Exchequers or Chequers Manor is traceable through its name to the half Fee in the Parishes of Lewknor & Stokenchurch held by Roger de Scaccario at his death about 1271 by the Serjeanty of being Grand Usher of the Exchequer, Usher of the Jewry & Crier before the Justices in Eyre (Forest) for all Pleas. His son and heir Lawrence held 6 Virgates of land in Stokenchurch in 1279 represented in the unspecified half Fee in Oxfordshire held in Mesne of the Earl of Cornwall to which his son Simon de Scaccario succeeded about 1284. He died in 1292, when the Manor was divided between his Sisters Maud, Lora wife of William Payforer & Beatrice wife of John Peverel.
In 1414 Robert Morley granted 3 parts of the Exchequers Manor to Peter Fettiplace and his wife Juliane, with the remainder in default of issue to Robert and his heirs and final remainder to Peter and his heirs. The Exchequers Manor remained in the Fettiplaces and passed to the Untons through the marriage of Hugh Unton with Anne (or Sybil) daughter and heir of William Fettiplace. In 1514 their son Thomas afterwards Sir Thomas Unton agreed to settle this Manor in Jointure on Mary Bourchier on her marriage with his son Alexander. The latter, who was also Knighted, succeeded his father in 1533, and was buried at Faringdon in Berkshire in 1547. His son and heir made a settlement of this Manor in 1579 on his marriage with Katherine Hastings, and it descended with Cadmore End in Fingest (qv) in the Unton, Tipping and Wroughton Families. In 1860 Philip Wroughton sold the Property to Thomas Taylor of Aston Rowant House, whose interest passed to Mr Henry Clerke Brown, JP, the past owner c.1957. No reference has been found to the Exchequers Estate as a Manor after 1763, but the name survives in the Chequers Farm & Plantation.
Wormsley Estate (Woodmundeslee, 13thC) in Stokenchurch was held in the middle of the 13thC directly of the Honour of Wallingford by the service of a ¼-Fee worth 40s and the payment of one Clove Gillyflower (clove pink-Dianthus) yearly to the Lord of Aston [Rowant]. Philip de Wormsley enfeoffed John son of Adam de Lewknor, who was Holding in 1279. The later Descent is not known till a conveyance by William Waller in 1574 to Adrian Scrope is found. His grandson Col Adrian Scrope was executed as a Regicide in 1660, but in the following year Wormsley Manor, which had consequently become forfeited to the Crown, was granted to his son Thomas. John, Judge Scrope, succeeded his father Thomas and made a Settlement of this Manor in 1714. By the marriage of his sister and co-heir Anne with Henry Fane, grandson of Francis 1st Earl of Westmorland, the Wormsley Estate passed to their 3rd son Henry Fane, who died in 1777.
It has since remained in his Descendants in the direct line and was c.1957 owned by Mr John Henry Scrope Fane. The Fane Family retained ownership of the House and Estate until 1986 when they sold it to Sir Paul Getty. After he acquired the 18thC House, Paul Getty spent much time on restoring the House & Estate back to its former Glory. Getty also had a Library added to the House to accommodate his Book Collection and a Theatre where Performances were held for invited Guests. It is now the home of Mark Getty and his Family and the Site of his Cricket Field is known as Sir Paul Getty’s Ground.
In the middle of the 16thC Water End or Waters Manor was in the possession of Bartholomew Tipping. It was afterwards acquired by the Belsons, one of the Roman Catholic Families of Oxfordshire and conveyed in 1585 by Augustine Belson and his son Robert to John Bowyer, who transferred his Rights in the Manor in 1590 to Robert Bowyer. In 1616 Augustine Belson, Robert’s son, died seised of 7 Messuages and other Property in Stokenchurch, probably the whole or part of this Estate. His son Augustine was then a Minor. The later Descent is not known.
Wallingford Priory owned Land in Stokenchurch called in the 14thC Stokenchurch Manor. It corresponds to the Rectory of Stokenchurch, including a Tenement called Prior’s Grove, which before the Dissolution had been Granted by the Priory in Fee Farm for 67-yrs to Robert Pigott, John Young & William Thornhill. The Reversion was granted to Cardinal Wolsey for his College at Oxford in 1528, but was resumed by the Crown in 1530. Sir William Spencer died seised of the Rectory in 1609, leaving instructions in his Will for its Sale. This Estate was afterwards split up among various Owners.
In 1279 a Hide of Land in Stokenchurch was held in Mesne by Reynold Beauchamp with Geoffrey de Pockele as sub-Tenant. It was chargeable with Suit of Court at Wallingford and 4d yearly to the Lord of Aston Rowant. No later trace of it has been found.