BRADENHAM (WEST) is a parish of scattered houses, separated from East Bradenham by a small rivulet, 3 miles W.N.W. of Shipdham, and 6½ miles E. of Swaffham. It is in Swaffham union and county court district, South Greenhoe hundred and petty sessional division, Lynn bankruptcy district, Swaffham polling district of West Norfolk, Cranwich rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry. It had 305 inhabitants in 1881, living on 1682 acres, and has a rateable value of £2939.
The name Bradenham is said to be derived from Brad, broad, den, a valley, and ham, abode, 'the abode in the woody valley.' Most of the soil is the property of W.M.R. Haggard, Esq., who is lord of the manor. Bokenham (or Bukenham) Hall manor is the property of the Girling family. H.S. Adlington, Esq., J.P., and some smaller owners, have estates here.
The CHURCH (St. Andrew), which stands on an eminence, is a handsome structure in the Early English style, comprising nave, chancel, aisles, south porch and massive square tower. The latter contains two bells of fine tone, and is detached from the south-west aisle of the nave. It was built probably in the thirteenth century. Thomas de Cailly, brother of Sir Osbert de Cailly, son of Sir Adam de Cailly, who died here as rector in 1318, is recorded on a monumental stone in the centre of the chancel.
All the sittings are free, but appropriated from time to time by the churchwardens. It was restored in 1850, when faculty and other pews were given up to the public by the lord of the manor and others. The Ecclesiastical Commissioners, as lay rectors, have repaired and restored the chancel. The three west windows, in stained glass, and the east window in the chancel, are in memory of members of the Haggard family. They were executed by Wailes, of Newcastle. The organ was given by the late Colonel Mason, of Necton.
The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the King's Book at £7 1s. 10d., now in the patronage of the Bishop of Norwich, and incumbency of the Rev. Henry Hetherington, who has a yearly tithe rent-charge of £169 9s., and a vicarial residence. The rectorial tithes are commuted for £218, and are in the hands of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.
The School, a brick building with good teacher's residence attached, was erected on a site given by William Haggard, Esq.
The mansion house was built in 1776, about a quarter of a mile from the old hall - a Norman tower or castle surrounded by a moat.
The manor was granted at the Conquest to William, Earl de Warrenne, of Castleacre. In 1087, Osmund de Kailly, or Cailly, a Norman knight, was infeoffed thereof by William, Earl Warren. In 1286, Sir Osbert de Cailly claimed, and it was found by a jury that he had, as lord of this manor, 'free warren' here. In 1301, Roger de Clifton was esquire to Sir Thomas de Cailly, with Edward I. in his Scotch wars, and married his sister Margaret, and his son, Sir Adam de Clifton, succeeded him. In 1432, Sir John de Clifton, of Buckenham Castle, was lord. His daughter Margaret married Sir Andrew Ogard, or Agard, Knight Banneret, of Emneth, Norfolk, and of the Rye House, near Ware, Herts. He was governor of Wisbeach Castle, and a distinguished warrior in the wars of Henry V. and Henry VI. in France, and, dying in 1454 without issue by that marriage, the manor reverted to the De Cliftons, from them to Sir John Knyvet (grandson of Sir John Knyvet, Lord Chancellor of England), who married Elizabeth, sister of Sir John Clifton, and thence through various owners of that name to Sir Thomas Rede, of Massingham, who married Mildreda, daughter of Thomas Cecil, Earl of Salisbury, and died without issue in 1627.
Sir William Wythepole, and Leicester Devereux, Viscount Hereford, succeeded in right of their wives; the latter purchasing the share of George, Earl of Desmond (temp. Charles II.), and becoming sole owner; from whom it passed through several owners to Thomas Smyth, Esq. (1753), whose son sold it in 1817 to the grandfather of the present owner, viz. William Henry Haggard, Esq., barrister at law, of Lincoln's Inn, only son of William Henry Haggard, Esq., of the city of Norwich. The Haggard family, bearing the same arms as the above-named Sir Andrew Ogard, are lineally descended from John Haggard, a freeholder in the parish of Ware, Herts (and churchwarden of it) A.D. 1561. John Haggard, Esq., LL.D., the eminent civilian, and compiler of 'Haggard's Ecclesiastical and Admiralty Reports,' was a member of this family.
The Fuel Allotment, awarded at the enclosure in 1802, consists of 14A. 1R. 12P., let for £15 9s. a year, which is distributed in coal. Land, &c., left to the poor by Richard Brotherwick and four other donors, in the seventeenth century, was exchanged at the enclosure for 7A. 0R. 35P. and two cottages, let for about £14 a year, which is distributed in coal.
POST, MONEY ORDER, and SAVINGS BANK at Mr. Richard Shearing's. Letters arrive at 7.30 a.m., and are despatched at 5.45 p.m. Sundays despatched at 10.30 a.m., viâ Thetford.
Adcock James farmer, Home farm Adcock John victualler, King's Head Adcock Samuel farmer, Grove farm Atthow Fredk. dealer & farmer Atthow Geo. fmr. & cattle dlr. High frm Atthow Mrs Rebecca farmer Canham Wm. bricklayer & farmer Chaplin Chas. carpenter & wheelwright Clarke Henry victualler, Star Cooper Mrs Letitia national schlmstrs Downs Robert farmer Drake Mrs Mary freeholder Goward Geo. farmer, Bokenham Manor Green James grocer and draper Haggard Wm. Hy. Doveton, Bradenham Hall; and of H.M. Esq. J.P. Diplomatic Service, Foreign Office, London, W. Haggard Wm. Meybohm Rider, and barrister-at-law of Esq. J.P., D.L. Lincoln's Inn, Bradenham Hall Hart Joseph farmer, Bridge farm Hetherington Rev. Hy. The Vicarage Heyhoe William farmer, Church farm Johnson Mr William freeholder Knights Thomas farmer Meachen John farmer Mendham Robert Coe & Daniel blacksmiths and victs, Maid's Head Pooley Thomas farmer; h Wood farm Rump John shoemaker Shearing John bricklayer Shearing Richard postmaster, parish clerk, assistant overseer, & assessor, and collector of taxes Thacker John baker and shopkeeper Walker George glover and farmer Wheals John frmr. Wootton's Manor Withers Robert farmer, Manor farm
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