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The Manor of Woodhall

The de Grey family arms
The de Grey family arms

Volume II of The Victoria County History for Bedfordshire was published in 1908. The work gave detailed histories of every manor in the county. The authors proposed that the genesis of this manor lay in a grant of 100 acres of land and 22 acres of wood in Meppershall to Warden Abbey in 1200 by Gilbert de Meppershall, the abbey holding it until dissolved by Henry VIII (1509-1547) in 1537 when it was worth £3/6/8 per annum.

The crown then leased the manor for a short time to Thomas Stringer the elder and Thomas Stringer the younger and in 1542 it was granted, like Saint Thomas Chapel Manor, to Sir Henry Grey of Wrest Park. The manor descended through the Grey family, Earls of Kent and subsequently Earls de Grey and Lords Lucas in the same way as Wrest itself. A succession of Laws of Property Acts in the 1920s effectively abolished manors in all but name.