52 residents in 52 weeks #15 William Heaton

William Heaton of Clough is listed as being one of the 5 tenants of Deadwenclough in 1609, holding land with a copyhold rent of £1 6s 9d. The others were John Nuttall of Newhall Hey, Francis Bridge, John Nuttall of Clough (church land) and Alexander Haworth. Interesting that the church had land in the Cloughfold area so early, they remained a local landowner well into the C19.

He was Greave of Rossendale in 1600.

His son John was baptised 28 Sept 1640. His will refers to son Richard and daughter Dorothy Pilling but their baptisms are not in the Lancs OPC transcript of Newchurch church.

He was buried on 21 Dec 1654. His will of that year commits his soul to ‘the hands of Almighty God my Maker and Redeemer by the Meritts of whose death and passion by mercy through faith I trust to be saved’ and his body to be buried in Newchurch in Rossendale.

(I love the religious language of the old wills and often wonder just what the testator really believed.)

Half his monetary estate was to be divided between son Richard and daughter Dorothy. The other half was split between 12 friends and acquaintances in small amounts.

A fourth part of his land was to his elder son William ‘which went out of England long since if hee be lyvinge and Returned agayne into England’ within 3 years of his decease.

(Ooh, I wonder where he went. Any database do passenger lists for 1650?)

Easily the most interesting was a further bequest to ‘John Heaton alis Bridge Twenty shillings in a yeare for the tyme of four yeares after my death And fourty shillings to bind him Prentice to learn some trade if any man will undertake to doe it for him’.

Mmm, looks like not all went well with the other son. Wonder what happened, and why he was ‘alis Bridge’? Was he ever apprenticed? The court rolls give no clues…

1609 tenancy:
Grimshaw MS. and Duchy of Lanc. Special Com. 722, cited in 'Townships: Newchurch', in Farrer W and Brownbill J (ed’) A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 6’, (London, 1911), pp. 437-441 (access to the early documents is limited and the LRO encourage the use of transcripts)

Newbigging, History of the Forest of Rossendale 1st end pp 97-107.

LDS film 1040340 via the Lancashire OPC.

Lancashire OPC from parish records