M. L. P, 19th Century
Church of ST. MARY the Virgin , Everton, Bedfordshire August 1873

inscribed and dated in the margin " Everton Church Beds August 1873"

pencil and watercolour
17.50 x 25 cm.


The church consists of a nave and chancel, two aisles, a south porch and a west tower that is now truncated following a lightning strike in 1974.
The east window of the south aisle dates from C15 although restored and is of two cinquefoiled lights under a four-centred arch with a flattened quatrefoil in the head. The glass is modern depicting Christ and some of the apostles including St Peter. There are two south facing windows in the south aisle, both of three joined lancets in modern masonry. The western window has glass depicting Christ in the centre, St Andrew and St James the Major or Great and was dedicated in 1964 to the memory Thomas Shaw, Vicar of the church.

Between these two windows is the south porch dating from the late C15. It has unglazed windows to the east and west of two trefoiled lights under square heads. The porch has a low frieze of a quatrefoil design and two small statue niches on the south face. The south doorway itself is Norman dating from around 1160. In the south-east angle of the porch and the aisle is a small blocked single round arched window dating from before the porch was built. The west end of the aisle has been rebuilt and houses a small C12 window reset of a similar style to the blocked window in the porch angle. The tower is now of two high stages with a modern parapet and corner pinnacles topped with weather vanes. Originally the C14 tower had another stage above but this was destroyed in a lightning strike in 1974 when it collapsed.

The north aisle dates from later than much of the church with quite a high pitched tiled roof leading to three small clerestory quatrefoil windows.
The clerestory on the south has three cinquefoiled windows under square heads. The west window of the north aisle is similar to that in the south aisle, again repositioned and is a single round arched window. The east window of the north aisle is similar to its equivalent on the south aisle being of two cinquefoiled lights with a depressed quatrefoil in the tracery. In the nave by the chancel arch and above the pulpit is an impressive alabaster and coloured marble monument to Sir Humphrey Winch (1555-1625). Sir Humphrey was a respected judge in the reign of James I rising to the title of Lord Chief Justice of Ireland.

Parish church. Mid C12, late C14 or C15. Coursed ironstone and cobblestones. Ashlar dressings. Clay tile roofs. Chancel, nave, N and S aisles, S porch, W tower. Chancel: C12. C19 E window gable above it rebuilt. N and S walls each have 2 plain round-arches lights with small outer reveals. At W end N and S elevations have C15 2-light windows. C15 chancel arch. Nave: C12. 3-bay round-arched arcades to both sides, with round shafts and scalloped capitals. N arcade is slightly earlier. C15 clerestory and 3 quatrefoil windows to N side and 3 square-headed windows to S, one of 2 lights, others C16 and of 4 lights. N aisle: C12 W wall has reset round-headed light. E wall has C16 2-light square-headed window N wall has 2 3-light windows, one C16, other C19. These flank N doorway, with C12 internal arch and C15 external arch reworked C19. S aisle: C12 2-light E window is C15. 3-light S windows are C19. C12 S doorway has scalloped capitals. C12 window reset in
rebuilt W wall. S porch: C15. Square-headed 2-light windows to N and S. Pointed archway. Plain parapets to nave, aisles and porch. W tower: C15. Formerly 4 stages, now only 3 since removal of bell-stage. Late C19 or early C20 embattled parapet with corner finials. Ground stage has C19 3-light W window. Interior: woodwork mostly C19, although nave roof appears to reuse earlier timbers. C15 stone corbels to nave roof. Some Cl7 corbels with egg- and-dart moulding. C19 octagonal font on squat columns. Nave has wall monument to Sir Humphrey Winch, 1624. Alabaster and polychrome marble, partly painted. Half figure in judge's robes within round arch. Chancel has marble wall monument to Richard Astell, 1777, showing urn in front of obelisk, as well as other late C18 and C19 marble wall tablets to Astell and Thornton families.

Everton is a parish on the Bedfordshire and Huntingdonshire borders with an area of 1361 acres, of which 604¼ are arable land, 367¾ permanent grass, and 32½ woods and plantations. (fn. 1) The eastern half of the parish is on the high ground bounding the valley of the Ouse, and the western in the valley, the lowest point being 60 ft. above the ordnance datum, and the highest 224 ft. The greater part of the parish is devoted to agriculture; the soil in the high lands is sand, and the subsoil sand rock, in the low lands clay to an unknown depth.

The chief crops are corn and roots of various kinds.

The parish is crossed from east to west by a road from Potton to Tempsford, and from south to west by a second road from Sandy to Tetworth. The village of Everton itself stands at the edge of the high ground which forms the eastern boundary of the valley of the Ouse, at the junction of these roads. A small detached portion, which includes the church of St. Mary, and the site of the ancient manor-house of Everton, is by schedule M. of the Act 2 and 3 Will. IV, cap. 64, declared to be part of Huntingdonshire, and is therefore included in the parish of Tetworth. In the north-east of the parish lie Biggin Wood, in which is a moat, and also Little Biggin Wood. The Great Northern Railway passes through the parish, the nearest station being at Sandy, 2½ miles off. Everton was inclosed by Act of Parliament in 1807, and the inclosure award, including a plan, is kept at the Public Record Office. (fn. 2)

The following place-names have been found in Everton:— Pondennellehul and Boresleile in the thirteenth century, (fn. 3) and Sibbesyard, Wendewod, Grogones, Ballardes (a messuage) and Gores in the fifteenth. (fn. 4)

Two entries with regard to Everton occur in the Domesday Survey. The Bedfordshire inquisition states that a manor of 5 hides in EVERTON, which had formerly belonged to Earl Tosti, now belonged to Potton, the manor of Countess Judith, of whom Rannulf, Ilger's brother, held it. (fn. 5) The history of this manor, of which no further trace has been found in Everton, may probably be identified with one of the sub-manors in Potton (which lies contiguous to Everton), held of this honour of Huntingdon.

In the second entry, which is to be found in the Huntingdonshire inquisition, mention is made of 7 hides of land in Everton, held of the king in chief, formerly belonging to Ingewar, but now to Rannulf, the same probably who held of the Countess Judith. (fn. 6) By 1140 this property had passed to Gilbert earl of Pembroke, who in that year granted the church to St. Neots. (fn. 7) The Pembrokes, and through them the Norfolks, continued to be overlords of Everton, Everton manor being held as of the manor of Weston. (fn. 8) The last mention that has been found of the overlordship is in 1626, when the manor was held of Sir Thomas Puckeringe as of his manor of Weston. (fn. 9)

In the thirteenth century Roger Burnard was holding, as under-tenant of the Earl Marshal, land in Ever ton which ultimately became known as EVERTON MANOR. (fn. 10) In 1247 Odo Burnard acquired 40 acres of land in Everton from Michael Burdet for which he paid 10s. rent, (fn. 11) and in 1263 Nicholas Burnard and Felicia his wife alienated a messuage and a carucate of land with appurtenances to Thomas D'Espaigne. (fn. 12) Between this date and 1307 this property passed to Walter Langton, bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, who in that year obtained a grant of a market and fair in Everton manor, here first definitely so called. (fn. 13) He held the manor at his death in 1322, when its extent included a capital messuage, with garden, 275 acres of arable land, rent from free tenants amounting to £6 10s. yearly, rents and works of other tenants value 7s. 6d., and fines and profits of court. (fn. 14) Everton manor passed on the death of the bishop to his nephew Edmund son of Robert Peverel, (fn. 15) and he left a son John from whom the manor passed to a sister Margaret wife of William de la Pole, who held the manor in 1354. (fn. 16) Their son John de la Pole, married to Joan daughter of John de Cobham, had succeeded by 1359, (fn. 17) and his daughter Joan, suo jure Baroness Cobham, was, together with her second husband Sir Reginald Braybroke, in possession of Everton manor in 1403, (fn. 18) and held it till her death in 1433. (fn. 19) Her daughter Joan married Sir Thomas Brooke, and died about 1442, and her granddaughter Elizabeth Brooke, who married Robert Tanfield, was in possession of Everton manor at her death in 1503. (fn. 20) Her grandson William, then aged fifteen, was her heir, and held the manor till 1530, (fn. 21) when he was succeeded by his son Francis, whose son Clement died seised in 1587, (fn. 22) and in 1615 William Tanfield his son conveyed the manor by fine to Sir Humphrey Winch, one of the justices of the King's Bench. (fn. 23) From Sir Humphrey Winch, who died in 1624, (fn. 24) the manor passed through Onslow, his son, who was holding in 1652, (fn. 25) to his grandson Humphrey, who in 1659 alienated the manor to Philip Story. (fn. 26) In 1693 Philip Story still held the manor, of which no further trace has been found; (fn. 27) the Inclosure Act of 1807, whilst enumerating other manors in this parish, makes no mention of this property. (fn. 28)

The origin of EVERTON MOSBURY MANOR is to be found in a grant made some time previous to 1284 to the abbey of Stratford Langthorne in Essex. It originally formed part of the 7 hides held by Rannulf at the time of the Survey. (fn. 29) From the Pembrokes the overlordship passed, as in the case of a moiety of Edworth (q.v.), to the Talbots. The first mention is found in 1322 when it was held by Richard Talbot, (fn. 30) and after 1537, when it was still held of the Talbots, earls of Shrewsbury, no further mention has been found. (fn. 31)

No trace has been found of the original grant of this manor to Stratford Abbey, but it must have occurred before 1284 when the abbot already rendered feudal service in Everton, (fn. 32) and this manor remained the property of the abbey until, in 1322, the abbot conveyed it to John Morice and Agnes his wife. In 1362 Sir John Morice enfeoffed John Colyn, vicar of Everton, of Everton manor to the use of William de Weston, master of St. Leonard's, Bedford. Ten years later, the latter transferred the manor in fee simple to Thomas le Dale or Fulthorpe, who guaranteed in return to appropriate to St. Leonard's a church of the value of £20 per annum. (fn. 33) Courts of the manor were held by John Martyn, Hugh Lotrell, and others in 1418–19, (fn. 34) probably as trustees for one of the Fulthorpes, for in 1428 Thomas Fulthorpe rendered service for two parts of a half-fee in Everton 'formerly held by John Morice.' (fn. 35) From 1428 until the death of William Dale in 1537 Everton manor follows the same descent as Little Barford (q.v.). William Dale left Everton Mosbury to his daughter Joan wife of William Wollascott. (fn. 36) Their son William died seised of Everton Mosbury in 1618, and was succeeded by a son William, who, dying in 1640, left a son also named William, as heir. (fn. 37) In 1653 he was in possession of Everton Mosbury manor, (fn. 38) but between that date and 1689 it had passed to Walter Cary, (fn. 39) who retained it until 1714, when he alienated it to William Astell. (fn. 40) Richard son of William Astell held the manor in 1738, (fn. 41) and on his death, without issue, in 1777, was succeeded by his nephew William Thornton, who assumed the name of Astell. (fn. 42) He died in 1847, and of his two sons, William the elder died unmarried in 1864, and John the younger succeeded to the Everton property. He died in 1887, and was followed by a son William Harvey Astell who, at his death in 1896, left a son Richard Astell, born in 1890, who is the present representative of the family.

No mention has been found of a third manor in Everton—that of EVERTON BIGGIN—prior to the late fifteenth century; it appears to have been an off-shoot of Everton manor of which it was held when it first appears in 1480. (fn. 44) The last mention that has been found of the overlordship occurs in 1640, when William Wollascott held Everton Biggin of Onslow Winch, lord of Everton. (fn. 45)

¶In 1480 John Dale, who also owned Everton Mosbury, died seised of this manor (fn. 46) and from that date Everton Biggin has followed the same descent as Everton Mosbury (q.v.). (fn. 47) It did not, however, become immediately absorbed in the larger manor, but preserved a separate identity certainly down to the late eighteenth century. (fn. 48)

In 1307 Walter Langton, bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, obtained a grant of a market to be held every Wednesday at his manor of Everton, and also of a three-days fair yearly on the feast of St. Bartholomew (24 August), (fn. 49) but no further trace has been found of the exercise of these privileges in Everton. At the same time a charter of free warren was granted to the lord of the manor, (fn. 50) who also possessed the right of holding a three-weekly court baron, (fn. 51) and of a view of frankpledge within the manor. (fn. 52) The owner of Everton Mosbury also received a charter of free warren in 1331, (fn. 53) and the privilege was still claimed in the eighteenth century. (fn. 54)

About 1140 Gilbert earl of Pembroke granted land in Everton, together with the advowson of the church, to the prior of St. Neots, (fn. 55) who in the thirteenth century claimed a view of frankpledge here, (fn. 56) and also rendered feudal service from 1284 to 1428. (fn. 57) At the time of the Dissolution the temporalities of the priory in Everton were valued at £12 11s. 10d., (fn. 58) and together with the rectory and advowson (q.v.), they were granted to Clare College, Cambridge. (fn. 59)

Sawtry Abbey was the recipient of various small grants of land in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries from the Burnards and St. Neots Priory. (fn. 60) At the Dissolution these lands were granted to Richard Cromwell, (fn. 61) who, in 1538, received a licence to alienate them to John Burgoyne.