Peter Brown Family History

Sussex Advertiser 1864 - Feldwyk




Note by PB: There are some errors in this narative (in particular date of death of Walter was date of Will and John’s wife was Thomasine Infield as stated in his Will).

The Rev.Edward Turner then made some observations on an older family even than the Culpepers, a bygone family – bygone that is, as far as the two parishes of Ardingly and Westhothly, with which they were originally connected, are concerned, who were established as landowners in these two parishes very nearly a century before the Wakehurst property passed into the possession of the Culpepers; and consequently, before Wakehurst Place was built by one of them, Sir Edward Culpeper, which was not until quite the close of the sixteenth century. The family to which he alluded was that of Feldwyk, seven generations of which are known to have been possessed of this property, and to have had a place of residence on the part of it which is in Westhoathly. This estate was anciently named Feldwyk and Home-Woods, but is now called Oldhouse and Wakehurst Lands, - Oldhouse, doubtless, from the circumstances of the old, and of late years dilapidated mansion, which was the residence of the heads of the Feldwyk family, so long as they were able to retain the estate; and Wakehurst Lands, from the circumstances of the Ardingly part of the property running up very close to Wakehurst Place; the south-eastern boundary of the estate, being for a considerable distance, the turnpike road passing through Lindfield to London. The earliest member of this family, of whom we have any notice, is William Feldwyk, of whom we know no more than that he was resident at Westhoathly early in the sixteenth century. His son Walter Feldwyk, who succeeded him appeared from an ancient roll of wills in the Lewes Registry, to have been resident at Westhoathly, doubtless at Feldwyk, April 30th, 1546; for to one of them his name was found as an attesting witness. He died March 18th, 1557, having previously made a testamentary disposal of his property. His will is in the same registry. He was succeeded in his estate by his son, John Feldwyk, who married Catherine Pensin, by whom he had two sons, William and John. He died possessed of the family estate in 1561. In his will, which is also to be found in the Lewes Registry, he, among other things, directs that in case of his death during the minority of his son William, he should be sent for the completion of his education to some college, either in Cambridge or Oxford. He died intestate, in or about the year 1622. His name appears in the Subsidy Roll for the Rape of Lewes, of the date of the 19th of James I (1621) for the lands of Westhoathly. As nothing is said of the part of the property in Ardingly, this, if brought into assessment at all, must have been so in a separate Roll for that parish. It is worthy of observation, as showing the territorial position in the Lewes Rape of this representation of the Feldwick familyat that period, that of the 21 persons in that Rape included in the list of compounders the highest sum paid was £14, to which one defaulter only was subject; that there were but two defaulters who compounded for £10 10s., of whom William Feldwyk was one; the other 18 discharging their pecuniary obligations in this respect  by the payment of £10 only, the sum accepted as a composition in all the Rapes in the majority of cases throughout the county. This Frederick (sic) Feldwyk is described in the composition list as of Westhodely, which shows that the mode of designating the parish at the present day by the lower orders living in its immediate neighbourhood, viz., Hoadly, is of some antiquity. The only male remnant of the family at present known to be in existence, is resident at Sevenoaks.