Hampshire Treasures

Volume 1 ( Winchester City District)

Page 149 - Itchen Valley

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The modern Parish of Itchen Valley comprises the ancient Parishes of Avington, Easton and Martyr Worthy from the hundred of Fawley, and Itchen Abbas from the Hundred of Bountisborough.

Mention of Avington occurs in 961 when King Edgar granted land to the minster at Winchester, later known as St. Swithun's Priory. The Domesday Book records the land being held by the bishop in demesne, and the manor belonged to the bishop or to St. Swithun's until the Dissolution of the Monasteries. Avington in the sixteenth century, was one of five manors which helped to support six stu dents at Cambridge. The land, together with Hampage Wood, passed to the Clarke family in 1545, but in the 1680's it was bought by George Brydges the M.P. for Winchester. Members of the Brydges family became Dukes of Chandos; in 1789 the manor passed by marriage to the Grenville family, and Richard Grenville, Marquis of Buckingham, assumed the name of Brydges and was created Duke of Buckingham and Chandos in 1822. The family fortunes declined, however, and in the great sale of 1848 Avington Manor was bought by John Shelley, who was later knighted.

Easton was first recorded in the ninth century in a grant of land by the Bishop of Winchester to Cuthred and his wifeWulfrith. In 961 King Edgar granted a portion of the land to his kinsman Brihthelm, Bishop of Winchester. The bishop held Easton in demesne at the time of the Domesday Survey, and various other nobles held parcels of land in the parish. A Papal Bull granted the manor to St. Swithun's Priory, Winchester in 1205, and it remained so until the Dissolution, when it was given to Sir Philip Sidney. The manor of Easton passed through various hands until it was bought by James Brydges, Duke of Chandos, in the 1770's and added to his Avington property.

Martyr Worthy was probably part of the "land at Worthy" granted by King Egbert to the minster at Winchester in 825. Although not mentioned specifically in the Domesday Book, the Manor of Martyr Worthy remained in the hands of the prior and monks of St. Swithun's, and passed to the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral at the Dissolution. During the eighteenth century the manor was sold to the Sheldon family, who sold it to Sir Chaloner Ogle in 1773. Sir Charles Ogle built a manor house here in 1820, but sold the house and land five years later.

The Manor of Itchen Abbas was listed in the Domesday Book as the property of St. Mary's Abbey, Winchester, and remained so (with the exception of two short periods of time) until the Disso lution. ln 1539 the manor was granted to Sir William Paulet, Lord St. John, who was later created Marquess of Winchester. The manor was sold in 1820 to Richard Plantagenet, second Duke of Buckingham and Chandos. In 1848 John Shelley, added Itchen Abbas to his Easton and Avington properties.

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