A primrose at Candlemas….

  “….and grant of the said manor and lands to Sir Walter for two years from this date, rendering one primrose a year at the Purification…” You’ll find the above extract at this site. https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-close-rolls/ric2/vol3/pp296-298 It records an agreement between Sir Walter de Cokesseye and the more famous Sir Hugh Calveley, who was a famous… Continue reading A primrose at Candlemas….

Knights united in life and in death….

In 1913 a medieval tomb was unearthed during excavations at the Arap Mosque in modern day Istanbul. It dated from 1391 and was a double tomb of two English knights, Sir William Neville and Sir John Clanvowe. That they were buried together is strange enough, but the carving on the tomb depicts them facing each… Continue reading Knights united in life and in death….

The Traitor’s Arms?

In 1840 workmen carrying out repairs to St Bartholomew’s Church, Ashperton, Herefordshire were collecting stones from the ruins of a nearby manor house when they discovered a heavy stone plaque, carved with an elaborate coat of arms, among the rubble. The stone was taken to the church for safekeeping and has hung on the wall… Continue reading The Traitor’s Arms?

The Mysterious Stone Masons of Herefordshire

Recently I had the chance to visit two of the most attractive female medieval tomb effigies I have yet encountered, both lying in their respective churches within ten miles or so of each other. Although one tomb effigy is in much better condition than the other, they are so stylistically close that it is likely… Continue reading The Mysterious Stone Masons of Herefordshire

How many wives did Sir Simon Burley have….?

Sir Simon Burley, childhood friend, tutor and magister of Richard II, was executed today, 5th May, in 1388. He was the son of a Herefordshire knight, was brought up with the Black Prince, and rose to be one of the most powerful men in the land when he ruled the king’s household. Richard adored and… Continue reading How many wives did Sir Simon Burley have….?

The ghosts of Hellens Manor….

Sometimes, a glance up at the TV screen captures the attention unexpectedly. This happened when Most Haunted was on, and the episode concerned Hellens Manor, Much Marcle in Herefordshire. Hellens is an ancient manor house set in the heart of one of our most picturesque counties. So I took a look at its website  which… Continue reading The ghosts of Hellens Manor….

Three new books about Herefordshire villages….

Herefordshire Archive and Records Centre (HARC) & Logaston Press invite you to celebrate the launch of three Parish histories at 7.30pm on Tuesday 7th November at HARC, Fir Tree Lane, Rotherwas, Hereford HR2 6LA With short talks by the authors Refreshments available Eardisley’s Early History and the story of The Baskervilles Edited by Malcolm Mason… Continue reading Three new books about Herefordshire villages….

Black Vaughan of Hergest Court in Herefordshire….

  Thomas Vaughan ap Rosser was born in 1400, and nicknamed ‘Black’ Vaughan because of his black hair; or perhaps because of his black nature. No one knows which. His main residence was Hergest Court, near Kington in Herefordshire, and his wife was Ellen Gethin of Llanbister, Radnorshire. She was, from all accounts, a formidable… Continue reading Black Vaughan of Hergest Court in Herefordshire….

Blanche Mortimer – The Grandison Monument

In the chancel of the church of St Bartholomew,  Much Marcle, Herefordshire can be found one of the most beautiful tombs chests in England, that of Blanche Mortimer, Lady Grandison.  I happened by chance on this lovely monument  some years ago.  I stood there entranced, unwilling to leave.  Blanche’s tomb has been described by Nikolaus Pevsner… Continue reading Blanche Mortimer – The Grandison Monument