Thornton Parish, Buckinghamshire, UK

The owners of the Manor of Thornton

Shields drawn by Doctor Brown; heraldic analysis by Barry Holliss. For a glossary of heraldic terms, click here

It is thought that there was a Roman occupation of this land, with a road running from Home Farm to a Roman house or grain dryer on the other side of the road. There was also a Roman wharf on the then navigable river.

1. - 1086 AZOR son of TOTE
2. 1086 RODGER d'YOREY (also spelt Roger d'Ivery). Coat of arms : Or, three chevrons gules. Cup bearer to William the Conqueror. He & Robert d'Oilli swore an oath of friendship on their departure from France in 1066 & agreed to share the same fortune. Robert, the senior partner, got extensive lands round Oxford, where he built a castle, and he awarded Rodger lands which included Beckley (capital seat), Ambrosden, Midbury and also the barony of St. Walery, but this was not confirmed until 1074. The d'Yorey family was descended from Rudolph, half-brother to Richard, the first Duke of Normandy. The original title was Baronia de Iverio, afterwards known as Baronia de S. Walerico.
Coat of Arms - RODGER d'YOREY
3. JEFFREY. Son of Roger d'Yorey. He died in 1112 without heir, so his lands went back again to the King (Henry 1). From the Doomsday Book: "Godfrey (Jeffrey) holds Thornton from Roger. It answers for 8 hides. Land for 10 ploughs; in lordship 3; a fourth possible. 12 villagers with 5 smallholders have 5 ploughs; and sixth possible. 3 slaves; 1 mill at 10 ora; meadow for 6 ploughs. The total value is and was £6; before 1066 £8. Azor son of Toti held this manor; he could sell." 2 hides is approximately 247 acres therefore Thornton was 960 acres. Thornton is in the 'hundred' called ROWLEY and is one of the smallest hundreds recorded in the Doomsday Book. (Counties were split up into units called Hundreds.) There are a total of seventeen hundreds that make up Buckinghamshire. (click here for definitions of Anglo-Saxon land measurements and their metric equivalents.)
4. 1112 GUY de St. WALERY. Coat of arms : Or, two lions passant guardant gules. Henry I granted Thornton Manor to Guy. His coat-of-arms may have been derived from the King's. His family owned Thornton for over a century. Granted the Baronacy of Ivri.
 Coat of Arms - GUY de St. WALERY
5. REGINALD. Son of Guy de St. Wallery. Of his father we read in the Parochial Antiquities, pg. 112: "Seems the son of a younger brother of Ranulph of St. Wallery, who came in with the Conqueror. This family derived its name from the town and part of St. Wallery or Valery in France..." it was from this part that Duke William set out on his expedition".
6. 1166 BERNARD de St. VALERY. Son of Reginald. Died on the 3rd Crusade at Messina. Had two sons, Bernard and Thomas. Bernard died in 1205, without issue.
7. 1190 THOMAS de St. VALERY. Inherited Thornton in 1205 and died in 1219. His daughter succeeded him, Allanore or Honora.
8. ROBERT de DREUX. In 1222, Allanore married Robert de Dreux. Coat of arms : Chequy argent and azure, a border gules. A canton ermine.
Coat of arms - ROBERT de DREUX
9. RICHARD EARL OF CORNWALL. Brother to Henry III, - granted overlordship. In 1227 Henry III confiscated all Robert's lands in England, but Thornton was Allanore's dowry so did not go to the Duke of Cornwall with the other lands. With her husband's consent, Allanore gave the Manor to another person.
10. RALPH de HARENG. Coat of arms as for Guy de St. Walery - see above. This was the man to whom Allanore gave Thornton. He was Lord of Westbury and Steward of the Barony of St. Wallery since 1202. Historians differ as regards to the date of this transfer, between 1235 and 1245, but the former date seems more likely.
Coat of arms - RALPH de HARENG
11. SIR JAMES le SAVAGE. Coat of arms : Argent, five lions rampant sable. Ralph gave Thornton to him c. 1244 in an old deed, Sir James is called Lord and Patron of Thornton by a gift of Allanore, who solely in her own person made a conveyance of the Manor. He did not hold the Manor for long, but in 1250 he levied a fine of lands in Thornton.
Coat of arms - Sir James le Savage
12. RICHARD de CHASTILLON (and proximate descendants). In 1264, the estate passed to Richard de Chastillon and his wife, Roysia. It came to Richard through his wife and in 1280, on her husband's death, Roysia was styled "Lady of Thornton" until her death in 1303. In that year Thornton passed to Roysia's son, MALCOLM, who died in 1318 and was succeeded by his son MALCOLM, who died in 1382 without issue. The estate passed to his brother JOHN.
Coat of arms - Family of Chastillon
13. JOHN de CHASTILLON. He founded a Chantry Chapel called "Our Lady of the Annunciation" in St. Michael's Church Thornton. He died in 1348, and was succeeded by his son, SIR JOHN. SIR JOHN and his wife, MARGARET, mortgaged the Manor and estate in 1395 to JOHN GIFFARD, and others. This old SIR JOHN lived a long time in very straightened circumstances, and he and his wife (MARGARET) were given a meadow in their former estate until the end of their lives. Their son, JOHN, was priest of St. Michael's from 1349 - 1377 and was buried in the church. His effigy was in the west nave until destroyed by Sir Thomas Sheppard.
14. JOHN BARTON. In 1414 John Giffard sold the Manor of Thornton to John Barton, senior and junior, for 800 marks. Barton rebuilt the north chancel of the Church, founded a second chantry and was buried with his wife Isabella under the north chancel arch. Their effigies can still be seen. John died c. 1433. Isabella then married Sir Robert Shotesbrook and died in 1457, in possession of the Manor. There was no Barton issue, so some disputes over the estates ensued. Finally, after various joint ownerships, the estate was conveyed by deed to Robert Ingleton, on January 1st 1464.
Coat of arms - John Barton


The Life and Times of Robert Ingleton

1st Coat of Arms : Argent, a chevron sable between three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom. He was Chancellor of the Exchequer to Edward IV.

2nd Coat : Argent, a chevron sable between three (??) enflamed sable

Ingylton : Argent, a chevron sable beween three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom, charged with an escutcheon argent crusilly-fitchee azure with three griffin's heads of the second

3rd Coat : Quarterly 1 and 4 argent a chevron sable between three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom. 2 argent a lion passant azure. 3 Argent crusilly-fitchee azure with three griffin's heads erased of the second.

Coat of arms - Robert Ingleton - 2nd Coat

He married three times:

Coat of arms - Robert Ingleton, 1st Coat
i) MARGARET DYMOCK (3 sons, 5 daughters)

Coat of arms : Argent, a chevron sable between three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom impaling sable argent two lions passant guardant crowned or tongued gules. The depiction shows the ground as argent whereas the achievement elsewhere shows the ground as sable.

Coat of Arms - R.I., Margaret Dymock
ii) CLEMENS BEAUMONTE (2 sons, 3 daughters)

Coat of arms : Argent, a chevron sable between three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom impaling sable semee de crescents or a lion rampant argent. Again the depiction does not show the sable field nor the crescent. Work shows this impaled achievement as written here being the arms of Clemens Beaumont as shown on the depiction.

Coats of Arms - RI, Clemens Beaumont
iii) ISABELLA CANTILUPE (1 son, 2 daughters)

Coat of arms : Argent, a chevron sable between three tar barrels sable, flames issuant proper therefrom impaling ermine a chevron gules three leopards faces jessant de lys thereon. Again the depiction does not show these items in the impaled arms in detail, so the blazon has been taken from elsewhere.

Coat of Arms - R.I., Isabella Cantilupe
All the bodies were buried in the Chancel of the Church of St. Michael, Thornton, and a beautiful raised tomb was erected over them. Robert Ingleton died in 1472.
16. THE INGLETONS. Robert was succeeded by his son George, who died in 1494 leaving a son and heir, Robert. He married Anne Empson and had one daughter, Jane or Joan, born in 1502.

Coat of arms : Quarterly 1 and 4 argent three tar barrels sable, flames proper issuant therefrom. 2 and 4 argent crusilly-fitchee azure with three griffins heads erased of the second.

Coat of Arms - George Ingleton, Robert Ingleton
17. Jane was nine months old on the death of her father Robert in 1503 (when he himself was still a minor); her mother Ann was the daughter of Sir Richard Empson, who was Robert's guardian. After Robert's death, Ann and her new husband John Hugford attempted to sue the Ingleton estate in Chancery, whereupon Jane was removed from the Crown's custody and placed under the wardship of Dame Joan Bradbury, widow. She married Humphrey Tyrrell in 1517 (being then aged 14) and after his death in 1549 married Alexander St John.
Jane was confided to the care of various wards (including the King). In 1519 Jane married Humphrey Tyrrill. Jane died in 1557 aged 55 and was buried in St. Michael's.
18. TYRRILL. Jane was succeeded by her only son, George Tyrill who is said to have impaired the family estate very much. He married Helen, or Eleanor, daughter of Sir Edward Montague. He died in 1570 and was succeeded by his son and heir, Edward, who married first Mary, daughter of Benedict Lee; they had one son, Sir Edward Tyrill, born in 1571 then in 1579 Mary died, and he married Margaret, daughter of Thomas Aston and they had three sons and five daughters.
The Tyrill family owned Thornton for many generations (250 years). In 1620 Sir Edward Tyrill pulled down the north aisle of the church and filled in the arches, which greatly disfigured it. In 1748 Sir Charles Tyrill died, leaving the sole daughter and heiress, Hester Maria Tyrill, who married the Rev. William Cotton on the 16th October 1755.
He rebuilt the manor house at Thornton and modernised it. It took on the appearance of a spacious and respectable mansion, without much pretention to elegance; it contained a large number of valuable portraits. Hester Maria Cotton died in 1778 and her husband died soon after. They left an only daughter Elizabeth Cotton.
There is an extensive history of the Tyrell family of Thornton on this site. Click here.
19. SHEPPARD. On 16th October 1775, Elizabeth Cotton married Sir Thomas Sheppard. They had nine children and his family held Thornton until Sir Thomas Cotton Sheppard died without issue in 1848, and the estate passed to his eldest sister, Elizabeth Cotton Sheppard.
20. HART. Elizabeth married Thomas Hart. They had one child, Elizabeth Maria Margaret Hart, born in 1818 and Elizabeth's husband Thomas Hart died in 1848. Elizabeth herself died in 1854, whereupon the estate passed to Elizabeth Maria. In 1841 she had married the Hon. Richard Cavendish.
21. RICHARD CAVENDISH was the second son of Lord Waterpark, of County Waterford, Ireland. He and his wife had three sons and six daughters. The eldest son William was born in 1843. Lady Cavendish died in 1858 (March 20th) and her husband in 1876.
The Cavendish family rebuilt Thornton Hall in c.1850-6 and had armorial windows put into the central hall, showing their descent from the Ingletons, through the Tyrells, Cottons, Sheppards and Harts.
22. WILLIAM CAVENDISH inherited Thornton Hall but died soon after in 1878. He died of 'inflamation of the lung' five days after. It is said he made an attempt to end his life with a gun. It is also said that he was an alchoholic. He is buried under a simple white stone cross under a yew tree in the churchyard.
23. 1878 HENRY CAVENDISH. He spent his time away exploring Africa. He became bankrupt and sold Thornton. The sale of the house took place in 1904 and the estate was sold in 1905.
24. 1905 MR. WHITWORTH.
25. 1907 COL. HENRY WILLIAM HARRIS. He derived his wealth from Harris Bacon and Sausage Manufacturers. He leased the house to the Order of the Sisters of Jesus and Mary for a brief period before the Order bought Thornton Hall in 1917. The Order has owned the house ever since.
click here to learn about the Harris Monument
26. 1917 The order of Jesus and Mary leased and then purchased Thornton Hall on the 14/12/1917.
click here to learn about the founder of the order, Mother. M. St Ignatius

The Doomsday Book

The Doomsday Book is a survey of England in A.D. 1086. A census of the productive resources and population of the country, also their value, who held what manors or lands. It was carried out on the orders of King William I in Winchester in 1086. The survey was undertaken in less than 12 months. Two teams of people were sent out - one team to check the work of the other to make sure there were no errors or back-handers, as this information was used to undertake the tax requirements of the King. TOP


A unit of measurement for assessment of tax, theoretically 120 acres, although it could vary between 60 and 240 acres. By custom it was the land that could be cultivated by one eight-ox plough in one year. In the Devonshire Domesday Book, it seemed to average about 64 acres.


Anglo Saxon institution. Subdivision of a Shire. Theoretically, but hardly ever, equalled one hundred hides. Generally had its own court which met monthly to handle civil and criminal law.

1 hectare is approximately 2.5 acres, or 1 acre is 0.4 of a hectare.

1 hide = 48 hectares therefore 100 hides = 4800 hectares. TOP

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