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Bennets Manor Luton

 Sowerby coat of arms
Sowerby coat of arms

Bennet's Manor was one of twelve minor manors of Luton which were probably never organised on a true manorial basis - as a manor court with jurors, bye-laws and copyhold properties owned by tenants of the manor. Bennet's Manor first makes its appearance in 1504, when Thomas Rotherham, who held about half the medieval Manor of Luton died holding it.

The Rotherham family retained Bennet's Manor until 1573 when George Rotherham sold it to John Franklin. John was succeeded by Richard whose son Sir John Franklin held the manor in 1622. After this date the manor disappears from the surviving historical record until 1797 when it was conveyed by Edward Southouse to John Sowerby.

The Sowerby family continued to own land in Stopsley which seems to be identified with Bennet's Manor into the 20th century. However, a succession of Law of Property Acts in the 1920s effectively abolished manors in all but name. including copyhold land and manorial courts and income