SOUTHALL: A Brief History

The Domesday Survey

The manor of hayes belonged to the Archbishops of Canterbury as we have already seen. The Precinct of Norwood was merely an outlying part pf the parish and for some time no separate priest was appointed to serve the people of the precinct.

Twenty years after the Norman Conquest the Domesday Survey was made. This survey examined the value of much of the land in the country and estimated how much each part was worth to the king. For Hayes we read:

‘Archbishop Lanfranc holds Hayes for 59 hides [ = 7,080 acres ], there is land for 40 ploughs [ i.e. pasture and woodland are excluded ].

The demense comprises 12 hides [ = 1,440 acres ] and there are 2 ploughs there.

Among the freemen and villeins there are 26 ploughs, and there could be 12 more.

A priest has one hide [ = 120 acres ] there; and 3 knights 6 ½ hides [ = 780 acres ]; and 20 villeins each one virgate of land [ = 30 acres ]; and 40 villeins each ½ a virgate [ = 15 acres ]; and 16 bordars [ small-holders ] with 2 hides [ = 240 acres ].

There are 12 cottagers [ small-holders less exalted than bordars ] and 2 serfs. There is a mill of 4/- [ taxable rate ] and meadow for one plough. Pasture for cattle of the vill [ manor ], wood for 400 pigs and [ valued at ] 3 /-.

With all its profits it is worth  £30, but yields only £12; in the time of King Edward £40. Archbishop Stigand used to hold this manor’.

The extent of the manor lands, you will notice, had greatly decreased since the days of Werhard. What happened to the other land is unimaginable: the church rarely sold land or gave it away. It looks likely that the figure given in Werhard’s will is an error arising in transcribing, for the original document does not survive. Lysons10 quotes 32 hides as the area of Werhard’s estate but reference to the extant copy of the will makes it clear that this figure refers only to a small part of the property.