THE SEARCH FOR OSWESTRY TOWN WALL

by DERRICK PRATT


1980 Town Wall Report - NOTES

  1. The remains of other earth and timber castles are to be found at Whittington, Brogyntyn, West Felton, Hisland, and 'Oaklands', Chirk Bank.
  2. Victoria County History of Shropshire , I, pp. 316, 321-2.
  3. It is most unlikely that a saint's name is involved, in the derivation of Oswestry (M. Gelling, Signposts to the Past , pp. 186-7; W.F.N. Nicolaisen et. al., The Names of Towns and Cities in Britain , pp. 57-8, 146-7).
  4. T. Jones (ed.), 'Cronicon de Wallia' , Bulletin Board of Celtic Studies , XII, pp. 27-44; T. Jones (ed.), Brut y Tywysogion Peniarth MS, 20 Version ), pp 57, 63, 93, 103; T. Jones (ed.), Brenhinedd y Saeson , pp. 155, 167, 217, 229; J.G. Edwards (ed.), Calendar of Ancient Correspondence concerning Wales , pp. 26, 65, 80-83, 111, 154.
  5. R.W. Eyton, Antiquities of Shropshire , VII, p. 262; Cal. Inq. Post Mortem , II, pp. 283, 306, 337; Cal. Close Rolls 1272-6 , pp. 513-5; M. Clough (ed.), Two Estate Surveys of the FitzAlan Earls of Arundel (Sussex Rec. Soc.), LXVII, pp. 74, 76-7; U. Rees (ed.), Cartulary of Shrewsbury Abbey , II, pp. 252-3.
  6. The Latin or French Blancmonasterium , Album Monasterium , Album Castrum etc. (in Welsh Y Fynachlog Wen ) were the original names for Oswestry. Oswaldestre does not occur in any authentic record until 1272, although its Welsh equivalent, Croes Oswallt , is found in 1254. Possibly because of confusion with Album Monasterium or Whitchurch in north Shropshire, the name Oswestry is increasingly used after 1272.
  7. A.Ballard, British Borough Charters, 1042-1216 ,pp. 29, 81; Eyton, Antiquities , X, p. 324.
  8. Cal. Close Rolls 1227-31 , pp. 82, 121; ibid., 1231-4 , p. 226. The market privilege was withdrawn for a short time, then re-instated.
  9. A. Ballard and J. Tait, Borough Charters 1216-1307 , pp. 159, 240, 296.
  10. C.T. Martin (ed.), Registrum Epistolarum Johannis Peckham &c . (Rolls Series), II, pp. 445-8.
  11. Cal. Inq. Post Mortem , I, pp. 216, 379-80, J.Y.W, Lloyd, History of Powys Fadog &c ., VI, pp. 336-7; Cal. Close Rolls 1272-6 , pp. 507-8; P.R.O. (Pipe Rolls) E 372/121, account of the sheriff of Shropshire for 1276-7.
  12. Cal. Pat. Rolls 1247-1258 , p. 609; D.C. Robert's, Some Aspects of the History of the Lordship of Oswestry to 1300 (unpublished University of Wales M.A. thesis, 1939), pp. 54-5.
  13. Cal. Pat. Rolls 1272-81 , p.187; J.E. Morris, The Welsh Wars of Edward I , pp. 115, 120, 145-6; F. Palgrave (ed.), Parliamentary Writs &c . (Rec. Comm.), I, pp. 5, 193.
  14. Cal. Pat. Rolls 1272-81 , pp. 223, 247; D.C. Roberts, op. cit. , pp. 60-61.
  15. J.C. Davies (ed.), The Welsh Assize Roll 1277-84 , pp.206-9.
  16. Cal. Chanc. Rolls, Various , p. 229; J.E. Morris, Welsh Wars &c ., p. 172. Replaced 8 August by Edward Mortimer ( Cal. Pat. Rolls 1281-92 , p, 32.)
  17. J.C. Davies, Welsh Assize Roll 1277-84 , pp. 206-9, 351-3.
  18. Cal. Pat. Rolls 1281-92 , pp. 57, 108; D.C. Roberts, op. cit. , p. 61.
  19. Quoted in Oswald's Well Magazine (September, 1848), I, pp.178-9; I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 109-110; W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., pp. 28-30.
  20. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p. 306. Tolls were finally extinguished by purchase, for the sum of 800, from the earl of Powys by Oswestry Corporation in September, 1833. For the tolls leviable under the 1673 Charter see A. Roberts, 'The Four Gateways of Oswestry', Trans. Shrop. Arch. Soc. (1884-5) , VIII, pp. 1-17.
  21. W. Price, The History of Oswestry &c ., p. 83, reprinted in I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p. 108 cf. D.C. Roberts, op. cit. , Map 5.
  22. e.g. F. Noble, Oswestry : Medieval Borough Features (leaflet,1966); R.A. Griffiths (ed.), Medieval Boroughs of Wales , p. 218 (inaccurately drawn); maps in possession of B.C.A.G. with supposed line of wall as supplied by Oswestry Borough Chief Technical Officer.
  23. Bodleian Lib. Leland's MSS. Gen. Top. e.12, ff. 39-40; L.T. Smith (ed.), The Itinerary in Wales of John Leland &c ., pp. 74-6.
  24. Leland's marginal note: 'Welsh - Avon Crois = Cros Brook'.
  25. Agreement, dated 16 September 1772, between the earl of Powys and Oswestry Corporation re demolition of remaining gates (S. Leighton, 'Records of the Corporation of Oswestry', T.S.A.S. (1882) , V, p. 164.
  26. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 109, 112; W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., pp. 93-4.
  27. It has been variously stated that Beatrice Gate was called after either (a) Beatrice, wife of Hugh Cyfeiliog, earl of Chester (1162-81), (b) Beatrix, wife of Thomas, earl of Arundel, lord of Oswestry (1400-15) or (c) a non-existent Beatrice, queen of Henry IV (I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p. 319; W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., p.94). It takes, its name from the street, and in no way can the early forms Baderiche (1302), Bader (1393), Bet(e)rich(e) (1539, 1577, 1585, 1602), Bett(e)ridge (1550), Baderick, Baderish (1564), Betrige (1577), be twisted into Beatrice .
  28. H.M. Colvin (ed.), History of the King's Works , I, pp. 333-5; A.J. Taylor, The King's Works in Wales 1277-1330 , pp. 385-6, 468-9.
  29. W.J. Slack, The Lordship of Oswestry 1393-1607 , p. 151; I. Watkin, Oswestry &c , p. 313; W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., p. 184.
  30. U. Rees, Cartulary of Shrewsbury Abbey , II, p. 253.
  31. A.H. Smith, English Place-name Elements , I, p. 118; I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 163, 268.
  32. Lands belonging to the Knights Hospitaller of St.. John and the abbeys of Haughmond and Shrewsbury, Tenants of the latter were permitted to use Oswestry market (U. Rees, Cartulary of Shrewsbury Abbey , II, pp. 282-3) and their lands in Scheldemer (within the liberties of the borough) had been appropriated by Richard FitzAlan I sometime before 1302 ( ibid. , I, p. xxxcf. M. Clough, Two Estate Surveys &c ., p. 68; W.J. Slack, Lordship of Qswestry , p. 150).
  33. Significantly, in 1351 Bromfield and Yale was valued at 831 and Oswestry only at 233 (S.R.O. 552/1A/1). In 1366 the lordship of Chirk was worth 513 (N.L.W. Chirk Castle MSS., D.28).
  34. Cal. Charter Rolls 1341-1417 , pp. 373-5; S. Leighton, 'Records of the Corporation of Oswestry', T.S.A.S. (1879) , II, pp. 199-207; J.Y.W. Lloyd, History of Powys Fadog &c ., VI, p. 319. For evidence of fraternities or gilds see N.L.W. Aston Hall MS. 947; Peniarth MS. 949.
  35. S. Leighton, 'Records of Oswestry Corporation', T.S.A.S. (1880) , III, pp. 78-9.
  36. W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., pp. 58, 77-82.
  37. Cal. Close Rolls 1268-72 , pp. 507-9; Cal. Inq. Post Mortem , I, pp. 216, 279-80; M. Clough, Two Estate Surveys &c ., pp. 65-7; W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , pp. 143-152; J.Y.W. Lloyd, History of Powys Fadog &c ., VI, pp. 332-4.
  38. P.R.O. (Lay Subsidy Rolls) E 179/166/178 for 1542 cf. W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , pp. 49~56 (1602 Survey), pp. 126-141 (1577 Survey).
  39. For the following details of the borough in the latter half of the 14th century see W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , pp. 142-152; N.L.W. Aston Hall MS. 6918 (receiver's account for 1362-3).
  40. L.T. Smith, Itinerary in Wales of John Leland , p. 75.
  41. See map 'Town and Liberties, 1795' in I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 12, 86 cf. W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , p. 135.
  42. N.L.W. Aston Hall MS. 1918.
  43. P.R.O. (Anc. Pet.) SC 8/251/5 cf. W. Rees, Calendar of Ancient Petitions Relating to Wales , p. 418.
  44. W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , pp. 46, 53.
  45. ibid., pp. 129-133.
  46. In modern terms Middle Street was that part of present-day Church Street extending from the Cross to New Gate. See also Shrewsbury Local Studies Library MS. 9025.
  47. In 1302 there were 13 burgages in Scheldemer extended as a distinct area in M. Clough, Two Estate Surveys &c ., p. 68 cf. W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , p. 150 where the name Scheldemer seems to be falling into disuse in favour of Chirton .
  48. L.T. Smith, Itinerary in Wales of John Leland , p. 75.
  49. Cal. Close Rolls 1268-72 , pp. 5-7-9.
  50. P.R.O. SC 6/967/23. Fragmentary account, undated, but from the tenure of Edmund Mortimer.
  51. The tenter frames were probably in the castle ditch. See 1602 Survey (W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , p. 51) where reference is made to "A certaine voide ground in the castle ditche where have been denters".
  52. J.E. Lloyd, Owen Glendower , p. 32; J.Y.W. Lloyd, History of Powys Fadog &c ., VI, p. 309.
  53. B.L. Harl. MS. 1981, ff. 8-9 cf. J.Y.W. Lloyd, History of Powys Fadog , VI, p. 310.
  54. W.J. Slack, Lordship of Oswestry , pp. 44-56, especially pp. 45, 47-8.
  55. Tenseria = payment by non-burgesses for trading rights. For other allegations of misappropriation of murage monies see O swestry: MS Copies of Records (Oswestry Public Library), p.108; W. Price, History of Oswestry &c ., pp. 25-6; S. Leighton, 'Records of the Corporation of Oswestry', T.S.A.S. (1881) , III, pp. 77-8.
  56. Mrs. Stackhouse Acton, Garrisons of Shropshire 1642-8 , p. 65; I. Watkin, Oswestry &c. , p. 289.
  57. For the various accounts of Oswestry in the Civil War see J.R. Phillips, Memoirs of the Civil War in Wales and the Marches 1642-49 , I, pp. 222-6, II, pp. 173-88; J. Parry Jones,'Story of Oswestry Castle', T.S.A.S. (1894 ), VI, ii, pp. 150-7; S. Acton, Garrisons of Shropshire &c , pp. 65-70; W, Blakeway, Account of the Woollen Industry and the Siege of Oswestry (S.L.S.Lib.); W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., pp. 65-70; I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 289-92; R. Gough, History of Myddle &c ., p. 179.
  58. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p. 111,
  59. ibid. , p. 292.
  60. W. Cathrall, History of Oswestry &c ., p. 82,
  61. J. Parry Jones, 'Story of Oswestry Castle', T.S.A.S. (1894) , VI, ii, p.171.
  62. S.R.O. 1043/6.
  63. S.R.O. 1043/7.
  64. S.R.O. 1043/1. For other presentments to 1764 see I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp. 115, 167, 238, 320.
  65. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c., pp. 112-6.
  66. ibid ., p. 115.
  67. ibid ., pp. 115, 238.
  68. ibid ., p. 115.
  69. ibid ., pp. 147, 238-241, 293-4, 320.
  70. See nn 21, 22 above.
  71. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., pp.111-112.
  72. ibid ., p. 112,
  73. ibid ., p. 128.
  74. ibi d ., p. 329.
  75. ibid ., p. 279.
  76. Bygones (1888) , p.179
  77. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p.167.
  78. Bygones (1907), pp. 76-7; letter to B.C.A.G. Secretary.
  79. I. Watkin, Oswestry &c ., p. 111.
  80. W. Day, 'Oswestry Town Walls', T.S.A.S. (1973-4) , LIX, iii, pp. 278-9.
  81. Letter to B.C,A.G. Secretary,
  82. Verbal communication to B.C.A.G. Secretary.
  83. Letters and maps supplied to B.C.A.G. Secretary.
  84. B.C.A.G. Newsletters , Nos. 7, 8, and 10; D.Pratt, 'The Search for Oswestry Town Wall', West Midlands Archaeology No. 23 (1980) , pp. 106-8.