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The Manor of Shillington alias Aspley Bury

Volume II of The Victoria County History for Bedfordshire was published in 1908 and gives details of the various manors in Shillington. Confusingly there have been two manors called Aspley Bury, one the manor of Aspley alias Aspley Bury and this one, Shillington alias Aspley Bury. Note that the manor is Aspley Bury whereas the part of Shillington for which it is named is now known as Apsley End!

The Rotherham coat of arms
The Rotherham coat of arms

The manor is first mentioned in 1476 when Thomas Lawley transferred the so-called manor to Thomas Rotherham, Archbishop of York who left it, on his death in 1500, to his nephew of the same name. The Rotherham family held the manor until sometime in the 17th century as in 1651 the Lord of the Manor is named as Sir Robert Napier.

 The Napier family coat of arms
The Napier family coat of arms

The Napier family remained Lords of the Manor until 1714 and the death of Sir John Napier. In 1748 Sir Conyers d'Arcy held the manor and in 1759 Robert d'Arcy, 4th Earl of Holderness. In 1760 he sold the manor to Joseph Musgrave, bringing together the two Aspley Manors which were held by the family into the 20th century. In the 1920s a succession of Law of Property Acts effectively abolished manors in all but name.

The Musgrave coat of arms
The Musgrave coat of arms