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Babs alias Balls Manor Milton Ernest

Volume III of The Victoria County History for Bedfordshire was published in 1912. The work gave detailed histories of every manor in the county. The Domesday Book of 1086 tells us that the parish was then divided into six separate holdings. The Manor of Babs or Balls is not mentioned until 1544 when a half of it was conveyed by Richard Greyves of Newark-upon-Trent [Nottinghamshire] and Agnes, his wife, to Richard Lewen. In 1558 Greyves sold the other half to Ralph Astrey for £100. Later Astrey made a complaint that Thomas Litten and others, because they had made a previous agreement with Greyves, had entered his portion of the manor.

The manor is not mentioned again in the historical record until 1711 when William Faldoe claimed half of it, now referred to as Babs or Balls for the first time. In 1718 Elizabeth and Katherine Haselden owned a half of it. In 1746 Richard Huskey owned half the manor which then passed to J. R. Throckmorton Huskey, owner in 1775. Daniel and Samuel Lysons in the Bedfordshire section of their Magna Britannia of 1813 state that the manor was held in parts by, respectively, Thomas Fisher, Ellis Shipley Pestell and Samuel Wyatt. In fact they put the manor up for sale by auction in 1804. It seems to have been sold to a serjeant-at-law named Vaughan.

At some date between 1832 and 1845 the manor passed from the Vaughan family to the Egerton family, Earls of Bridgewater. Between 1864 and 1869 the manor was sold to Joseph Tucker who was succeeded by his daughter, who had married Burton Alexander. Their son J. Tucker Burton Alexander was Lord of the Manor in 1912. A succession of Law of Property Acts in the 1920s extinguished all manorial incidents, courts and copyhold tenure of land. This effectively abolished manors in all but name.