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with certainty upon the stock of the chieftain. The Earls of Chester had possessions also in Leicestershire; and in the time of Kings John and Henry the Third, we find some of the Lancashire Banastres connected with Appleby and Nailston, in that county.
Robert Banastre had three sons. Richard, the eldest, died childless, before 1204. The second son, Warin, in the sixth year of King John, gave the King four hundred marks for having livery of his land in Makerfeld, which however he did not long enjoy. He appears to have been married to a lady named Sarra, who survived him, but he left no issue. Thurstan, the third son of Robert, succeeded to his brother Warin; and 14 Octo. 1213, 15th John, gave the King five hundred marks to have an inquisition whether the land of Makerfeld should descend to him on the part of Robert his father, and Warin his brother, whose heir the said Thurstan
He was married to a lady named Cecilia, of whom, in her widowhood, mention is made in Testa de Nevil. Her marriage is there stated to be in the King's gift ; and it appears that in 1223, 7th Hen. III., she had married Ric. de Mahant. Thurstan must have died in 1218 or 1219, for in the third year of Henry III., Philip de Orreby, justiciary of Chester, made a fine of five hundred marks with the King to have the wardship and marriage of Robert Banastre his heir. The petition so frequently referred to, states that Robert was only one year of age at his father's death, was twenty years in wardship, and only lived three years after he came of age. Of his marriage we have not certain information. His death is incidentally proved to have taken place before the 27th of Feb., 1242, for it appears in the 26th year of Henry III., the King gave to the Prior of Penwortham, the manor of Walton, to be held until the majority of the heir of John Banastre, whose wardship belonged to the King by cession of the Earl of Lincoln. This John is not named in the petition. He evidently died in infancy, very shortly after his father; and Robert Banastre, his brother, who in the sixth year of Edward I., claimed the restoration of Prestatyn, succeeded to the inheritance.
He had charter of free warren in Waleton and Newton, 41 Henry III. ; and in the following year he obtained a grant of a market and fair in his manor of Newton. He is believed to have married Alice, daughter to Gilbert Wudecock, who
survived him. We have evidence of his being alive 13 Edw. I. when he had from the Prior of St. Oswald license for a chantry in his chapel of Rokedene, in the parish of Winwick. He died soon after, certainly before 20 Edward I. His issue consisted of a son James, and of a daughter Clementia, to whom, and to her husband William de Lea, and their heirs, he gave in free marriage the manor of Mollington, in the county of Chester, and certain rents, in the township of Golborne, in Makerfeld. Clementia died before the 8th of February, 1290, leaving her husband, aged about thirty-one, and two children. Her son, Henry de Lea, was beheaded, in consequence of having taken part in the rebellion of Sir Adam Banastre, 9th Edward II., and left no issue. Her daughter Sibella, married Sir Richard Hoghton, of Hoghton Tower, to whom she brought the estates and the armorial bearings of the family of Lea, as well as the manor of Mollington Banastre. 1
James Banastre, son of Robert, married Elena, daughter to William le Boteler, Baron of Warrington, and died before his father, leaving an only daughter, Alice, whom we find, 20 Edward I., in ward to Sir John Byron, and espoused to his son John. She was then stated to be under age, and, being very young, the marriage was probably never consummated, for, shortly after this date, she was given in marriage to John de Langeton, son of Robert de Langeton, of West Langton, in the county of Leicester, and is mentioned as his
1 Little Mollington, or_Mollington - Banastre had formed part of the possessions of Robert de Rodelent, under whom the Banastres may have held it, as they did Prestatyn. In a record of 41st Edward III., it is stated that Robert Banastre had held this manor “Ex dono D'ni Regis de dicto D'no Rege p. Servic quarte p'tis unius feodi milit." This is quoted in Ormerod's History of Cheshire as if Edward had granted the place to Robert Banastre, who had then been long dead. It has been shown what disposition he made of this estate in his lifetime; and by an inquisition 11 Edward III. it appears that Richard de Horton gave the manor of Mollington-Banastre to Sir Adam de Horton, his son, and that Adam held it of Robert de Langton, the heir of Banastre, he himself holding of the earldom of Chester. Mollington afterwards passed from the Hoghtons to the Stanleys of Hooton.
2 John Byron the younger (espoused to Alice Banastre) probably died in the interval. In some of the Byron pedigrees he appears as the father to Sir Richard Byron, but in others Richard is made to be the son and successor of the elder John Byron, who survived until 11 Edward II. The latter account is no doubt the correct one.
36 Ex dono R’s Edwdi.” or, as Whitaker in the History of Whalley quotes from Dodsworth, “ Edmundus Hen: R. angl. fil. dedi D'no Joh: de Langton amico Karo maritag. Alicie consang. et her. Dni. Rob. Banastr. defunct."
wife at the inquest held on the death of Edmund Earl of Lancaster, 25 Edward I.
In 29 Edward I., John de Langton, on the application of his brother, the chancellor, had a charter for markets, fairs, and free warren, in his manors of Newton, Walton le dale, and of free warren in Lawton and Goldborne. Alice was alive 32 Edward I., as is shewn by a fine levied of the manors of Waleton and Newton, and of the advowson of Wygan in that year, being a settlement on the heirs of John and Alice, with remainder to the right heirs of Alice; but she died before 3 Edward II. Her husband was still alive 18 Edward II.
Their posterity in direct male descent enjoyed these possessions for the space of about three hundred years, until the death, without issue, of Sir Thomas Langton, knight of the Bath, which took place in 1604, when the Makerfeld fee passed by heir female to the Fleetwoods, from whom it came to the Leghs of Lyme, being now possessed by Thomas Legh, Esq.
Walton le dale had been ceded by Langton to the family of Hoghton, of Hoghton Tower, in consequence of his having slain Mr. Hoghton, at sea, in the 32nd year of Elizabeth. The correspondence of the authorities on the occasion of this fatal feud is preserved in the British Museum, and affords a curious picture of the times: it is quoted by Mr. Baines in his History of Lancashire. The Langton family are now represented by the descendants of Roger Langton, of Broughton Tower, contemporary with the last baron of that name and his cousin, related in half blood. A collateral branch was seated at Low, in Hindley, holding that manor under the barony of Newton from the time of Edward III. to the middle of the last century, when they became extinct.
Having now traced the descent of the estates and of the representatives of Banastre of Prestatyn to the present time, it only remains to notice briefly some of the collateral branches of that family. Whitaker, in his History of Whalley, gives the pedigree of one of them seated at
1 This charter proves the relationship of John de Langeton, Bishop of Chichester, and Chancellor, in the reigns of Edwards I. and II., with the family then settled in Lancashire ; and there is the clearest evidence of their derivation from the county of Leicester. Lord Campbell is therefore in error when he assigns this Chancellor to the family of Langton in Lincolnshire.
Altham from the time of Richard II. to 1694, when the last male heir died. This property had been acquired by the marriage of Richard, son of John Banastre, of Walton, with Johanna, daughter and heir of John de Alvetham.
The descent of Banastre, of Bank Hall, in the township of Bretherton, is given by Mr. Baines from the time of Henry VIII. to the termination of that family in heirs female about one hundred and fifty years ago. They were the representatives of Richard Banastre, one of the inquisitors of Leyland hundred for the Gascon Scutage, in the reign of Henry III. He, with certain other parties, held one-twelfth of a knight's fee in Bretherton, which, in the time of Edward III., was in the tenure of Thomas del Bank, of Sir Thomas Banastre (K. G.), son of Adam, and of William, son of William Banastre, with others.
The succession of this property enables us to place among the descendants of Richard Banastre the family of which five generations have been carefully traced by the late Mr. Beltz, in his Memorials of the Order of the Garter, from the time of Edward I. until that of Richard II., when Constance, who married William de Balderstone, was left the heiress and a minor. Sir Thomas Banastre, knight of the Garter, is the subject of his interesting memoir. This branch of the Banastres of Leyland Hundred were large proprietors in Amounderness. They held one of their estates there (Little Singleton) by great serjeantry, viz., by finding a man to serve the office of Bailiff of that Wapentake. It appears
, by records not quoted by Mr. Beltz, that Joan, daughter of Alan de Singleton, and sister to Thomas de Singleton, who died s.p., brought this property to Thomas Banastre, her husband, who must have been father to Sir William Banastre, with whom Mr. Beltz begins the pedigree. The arms of Sir Thomas Banastre, K. G., are ascertained by his Garter-plate, still
Great Hoole had been given by Henry Fitz-W’m, in the time of Henry III., to Thomas Banastre, in free marriage with Agnes his daughter. Some generations later, this manor was brought by Margaret, daughter of Thomas Banastre, in marriage to the Heskeths of Rufford. The pedigree of that family given in Baines's History of Lancashire, styles Thomas Banastre, father of Margaret, “ Baron of Newton, Lord of Walton, and Knight of the Garter.” We do not find, however, that Great Hoole had ever formed part of the possessions of the family of the Knight of the Garter, whilst from the descent of the manors of Newton and Walton, already traced, it is evident that Thomas Banastre was not their lord.. ARCHÆOL. CAMB. VOL. 1.)
affixed to his stall in St George's Chapel, to have been argent, a cross circelée (flory) sable. The crest is effaced, but according to Vincent's MS. it was a peacock sejant.
Similar are the arms (argt. a cross patonce sa :) and the crest of the Bannisters, of Bank; and the same coat, with a pot in the dexter point for difference, is assigned to those of Altham. In various MSS. also, we find argent a cross flory sable quartered by the Langtons, with argent three chevrons gules. This coat of three chevrons, was also derived from the alliance with Banastre, as is proved by drawings of Robert Banastre's seals, made by Randle Holme and Dr. Kuerden. From a window in Wigan church, a shield is quoted by Randle Holme: “Argent three chevrons gules, impaling argent an eagle displayed with two heads, vert beaked and legged or;” this last being the paternal coat of Langton. Their crest of a spread eagle vert, appears to have been superseded in the case of the Barons of Newton, by one derived by Banastre, viz., a maiden, couped below the shoulders, sometimes represented as attired gules.
The Banastres of Darwen are represented to have borne a water bouget, with three fleurs de lis, or, on a chief gules; or as given by Randle Holme, in his Accademie of Armorie, “He beareth sable, two water bugs fixed to an amulet hanging saltirewise, argent. This between three flowers de lis, or, is the coat armour of Banister, of Derwyn.”
One of the desiderata in Welsh antiquities is a good county history of Denbighshire. The district is rich in records and remains of all kinds; and it is to be hoped that some Cambrian antiquary may be incited to undertake this useful task. The following notes relating to this county may be interesting to readers in that part of Wales.
Is it true, as stated in Gorton's Topographical Dictionary, and in Leigh’s Guide to Wales, that the fortress of Denbigh was blown up on the restoration of Charles II.?
1 In some MSS. this crest has been drawn both as borne in full face and in profile, which has led to its being given in Gregson's Fragments, and Baines's History of Lancashire, as two figures on one wreath.