The Manor of Lewsey belonged to the nuns of the Priory of Markyate in the 13th century. The priory was founded by Saint Albans Abbey in 1145 but it is not recorded when Lewsey was granted to the priory or, indeed, when the manor itself was created, all that is known is that in 1291 the priory owned £3/0/1½ annual income of lands in Lewsey which had increased to £4 by the time the priory was dissolved by King Henry VIII (1509 to 1547), when the manor became the property of the Crown.
Acworth coat of arms
In 1545 the Crown granted the manor to George Acworth, who also owned Biscot Manor. He sold both manors in 1549 to John Dormer of London, who transferred it to another London merchant, William Harper, the next year. In 1555 Harper sold the manors to John Alley, whose son mortgaged them to Edward Wingate in 1593.
Wingate coat of arms
Wingate became owner two years later when Francis Alley defaulted on the mortgage. Edward Wingate's son George inherited the manors in 1598 and, on George's death in 1606 his grandson John Wingate inherited. John Wingate died in 1644 and his second son George inherited Lewsey Manor. In 1679 his two daughters Elizabeth, later wife of John Pomfret and Mary, later wife of George Snagge, inherited the manor in 1679. In 1741 George Snagge sold his wife's half share of the manor to John Miller. In 1771 Mary's half of the manor was alienated to Miller's son, also John, by trustees. John Miller junior sold the whole of the reunited manor in 1782 to trustees of the Duke of Bedford. In the mid 19th century the manor was sold to a man named Anstey and the family continued to own it 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.