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Summary:

Original estate: Chantry of Blessed Virgin Mary
Earliest records: Pre 1470
Date of building: 18th century frontage on older back
Listed? Grade II
Commoner's Rights: Yes (Frontage 22ft. 2 horses or 4 cows)

Thumbnail History:

Clothworker in 1585; baker in 1676; grocer from 1841; Hungerford's Post office between 1896 and 1914, and the site of the first telephone exchange. Later International Stores, before being incorporated into the Co-op.

Description of property:

From Listed Building records: House, now shop. 18th century front on older back. Slate roof, slate hung gable to south, wide flat eaves, mathematical tiles to road front and stucco quoins. Three storeys. Two sashes. 20th century shop front.

Photo Gallery:

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hsl-09 c1920a
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15hs co-op reva...
15hs co-op revamp 2007 15hs co-op revamp 2007

- 14 High Street, Jan 2007

- Post Office, c1898

- High Street c1920, showing International Stores. [Parsons]

- Co-op upgrade, Aug 2007

Timeline:

Pre 1470 (NH) Robert Spicer

c.1470 (NH) John Colyns ½ burgage, late Robert Spicers, q.r. 4d.

1552 (NH) Richard Bridges gent – 1 tenement late in tenure of John Taylor , now of William Carter, q.r. 4d.

1573 (NH) 1 tenement, garden and backside, held by Roger Dudmarshe by indenture lease from Anthony Bridges esq., and an annual payment of 2 shillings to the chantry. John Harrold's tenement is on the north side [12-13 HS], and the BVM chantry tenement, occupied by Humphrey Batte, on the south side [?15 or ?16 HS].

1585 (NH) By deed (Wilts C.R.O 1064/22) Anthony Bridges gent (and Edmund Webbe and Thomas Langford) sold to Humphrey Batte clothworker, the tenement in the occupation of Humphrey Batte and formerly Walter Freeman. The tenement is described as flanked by the land of John Harrold on the north side [12-13 HS] and that of the chantry on the south side, in the tenure of Agnes Batte [?15 or ?16 HS].
1591 (NH) Widow Batte is still occupying the neighbouring chantry tenement [?15 or ?16 HS]with 7 acres of land, and Humphrey Batte the tenement [14 HS], q.r.4d.
1609 (NH) By position, this may be identified as that tenement recorded as Humphrey Batte's "from Thomas Goddardes, as his freehold", q.r.4d.

1663 (NH) Hearth Tax: Thomas Sare, 2 chimneys.
1676 (NH) By position, this appears to be Thomas Sare's house, q.r. 4d. Thomas Sare was a baker.

1753-61 (QR) John Popjoy for his house late Sare's – 4d
1774-90 (QR) John Popjoy for his house late Sare's (amended to Thomas Perry for house late Westbury's) – 4d

1781 (CL) John Westbury

1795-04 (QR) Thomas Perry for house late Westbury's – 4d
1805-17 (QR) Thomas Perry for house late Westbury's – (amended to Elizabeth, then further amended to James Little ) –4d
1807 (CL) Thomas Perry

1818-23 (QR) James Little for house late Westbury's – 4d
1832 (QR) James Little for house late Westbury's – 4d
1836 (QR) James Little for house late Westbury's – 4d

1841 (CS) Daniel Allen (35) grocer.
1847 (CL) James Little (owner). Daniel Allen (occ)
1851 (CS) Daniel Allen (49) grocer. (Entry before this in the census says "House uninhabited during the day only".

1861 (CS) Richard Gibbons (40), furniture broker.
1861 (CL) Mrs Little (owner). Richard Gibbons (occ)

1871 (CS) Entry 38=A.E. Allwright (28), Draper; Entry 39=Daniel Allen (69), grocer.

1881 (CS) ?no entry

1896 (CL) Rebecca Hewer (owner). Joseph Matthews (occ) [Postmaster]
1902 (T&M Register) Rebecca Hewer (owner until 1967)
1903 (T&M Register) Joseph Matthews (occupier)
1906 (Isaac Pountain (occupier until 1915)
1914 (CL) Rebecca Hewer (owner).Isaac Pountain, postmaster.
1914 Post Office moved to newly built premises 126 HS.

1917 (T&M Register) International Tea Co (occupier); International Stores moved here from Bridge Street
1932 (QR) International Stores – "house formerly Westburys afterwards James Little", q.r. 4d.
1939 (Blacket's) 14: International Tea Company . C.J. Spencer, manager

1947-63 (CL) Cyril A. Rouse (Co-op north)
1968 (CL) Brian Michael Read (Co-op north)
1968 (T&M Register) Miss E Hewer (owner); Brian Michael Read, manager (occupier)
1969 (T&M Register) International tea Company (owners until 1972)
1970 (CL) Void
1973 (T&M Register) Co-operative Retail Services Ltd (owners)
1976 (CL) Void
1983 (CL) Void (Co-op north)
1984 (CL) Void
1985 (CL) Void
1990 (CL) Void
1999 Part of Co-operative Stores – whole store refurbished.
2000 (CL) Void
2005 (CL) Void
2011 (CL) Void

From Norman Hidden's papers:

In 1676 QR this was one of the houses of Thomas Sare the baker, who, like his father, became Constable (in 1677). In 1682 he made his (PCC) will, probate 1689, in which he bequeathed to his wife Edith for her lifetime his dwelling-house and after her death it was to go to his son Richard.

Edith's own will (made in 1691, probate 1698) leaves her household goods to be divided among her four children, except "one instrument for dressing meal called a boulter and also all the Kivers (=tubs)" "used about the dressing of meal, which I give to Richard". Clearly, her eldest son Richard was to continue the business. In an inventory of her goods one of the rooms is described as "the old chamber over the bakehouse", in which was the boulting mill already referred to. Also in the house were malt and bottles, an old furness, and a pump.

Richard carried on the business until his death in 1737. His will leaves to his wife Eleanor the house in which they dwell, with reversion after her death to his son Joseph (born 1707). The will refers (in the same way as did his mother's) to one boutling mill complete; also to two meal bins, a box in the meal loft, moulding boards (for shaping the bread?), brass pan, and brass kettles in the bakehouse, all of which, being utensils of his trade, are to go to Joseph.

A little after her husband's death, Eleanor took out a fire insurance policy which reveals the house to have been timber-built, and let to Abraham Bousher, baker. Bousher probably carried on the business on behalf of Joseph or possibly because Joseph was not especially interested in the trade. The house was not only timber-built rather than brick, but also thatched rather than tiled. At this stage, therefore, it represented one of the older styles of building so many of which in Hungerford were replaced by brick and tile in the 18th century.

Within a few months of her husband's death, Eleanor found it necessary to raise a mortgage on the building (this may in fact have been the reason why a fire insurance policy was taken out) and although the sum of £60 seems small, it became, at compound interest of 4%, a burden which was to become a millstone around the neck of her son and his heirs. Eleanor moved out of Hungerford, leaving Bousher in the house and a mortgage which passed through several hands to end with a local shopkeeper John Popejoy in 1747. It was in this latter year that Eleanor died, in Andover. Joseph was now in desperate need and borrowed money from Popejoy who took possession of the house, which by Richard Sare's will should have descended to Joseph upon Eleanor's death, until such time as Joseph should be able to repay the mortgage. In fact Joseph could repay Popejoy nothing and Popejoy then sued for repayment of the loan, obtaining judgement against him. Joseph was sent to Reading Gaol as a debtor and remained there until August 1748 when he was luckily released as a result of a new Act of Parliament liberalising the treatment of debtors. Joesph died in 1752, leaving a widow Joanna, with five children, three boys and two girls - Frances (born 1736) and Mary (born 15 Sep 1745 - ?twin with John), then "infants of tender age". The house remained with Popejoy who paid Joanna a one-third share oof its rental income, that is, the widow's share to which she was entitled by law. By August 1753 Joanna also had died when Frances and Mary were of age, living in London, they took legal action (in 1765) to try to reclaim their father's inheritance. By this time Popejoy had been in possession for some 16 or 17 years; he expressed to the court his readiness to return the property to Joseph's heirs immediately the mortgage plus interest plus maintenance costs and expenses plus his loan to Joseph were repaid. By now the original £60 had become more than £200 and this may have represented more than the house's then market value (when Eleanor had insured the premises it had been insured for a total sum of £150).

Among the documents of the court case is a full parchment sheet of Popejoy's expenditure on the premises year by year between 1749 and 1765, together with a record of the rental income. In 1750 the premises were rented at £6.0.0 per annum, but when the tenancy changed in 1753 the rent was raised to £7.7.0 p.a. and it remained at this figure for the next ten years. The record of expenditure is a fascinating one – there were regular annual charges as insurance, land tax, poor rate, quit rent and, towards the latter end of the period, window tax. These items alone accounted for about one third of the annual rental income of only £6 and another third went to widow Joanna. Out of the remainder of the income there were constant payments for repairs and maintenance. Two such heavy expenses were re-thatching the roof and repairing or replacing the well pump.

In the 1753 QR the house is ascribed to John Popjoy ("late Sare's"). John Popjoy (or Popejoy)'s will dated 1766 and proved 1767 leaves to his executor Edward Marson, innholder of Chilton Foliat "my freehold cottages, gardens [etc] in Hungerford in the occupation of John Cullimore, Thomas Bradford, Elizabeth Beazey widow, and John Bazing as tenants to me, and also 4 acres of arable in 2 several pieces in .. the Breach, also my other acre in Piddingfield." To his nieces Jane Popjoy and Mary Popjoy he left "the principal and interest due to me by virtue of an assignment of mortgage dated 7 April 1749 transferred to me by Thomas Staverton then of Henley, Oxon, maltster, of a messuage, garden, and appurtenances in Hungerford aforesaid heretofore the property of Joseph Sare deceased, now in possession of Jane and Mary Popjoy". He leaves to his nieces Jane and Mary and to his nephews John and William "all household goods [etc.] being in that part of the messuage wherein I now dwell in Hungerford … with all my wood, both my carts, and a gelding". He leaves further to his 2 nieces his crop of corn, clover, and grass in the 5 acres already mentioned. The will is witnessed by, among others, John Westbury.

John Westbury died in 1792, having out-lived his wife Edith (burial 1790) and his son John Westbury junior (burial 1788).

Mary Popjoy, spinster, was buried on Boxing Day 1784.

John Basing was buried 3 Jan 1771. Of Thomas Bradford and Elizabeth Beazey, the parish registeres have no entry.

What happened to Jane? There is no burial entry in the Hungerford parish register pre 1800, but she is mentioned in the will of Robert Miller, victualler, dated 1772. He leaves to his daughter "all that messuage or tenement and garden and appurtencances in the High Street in Hungerford now in the tenure of Jane Popejoy". Robert died in 1776.

1750, 4 July: Sun Fire Insurance by John Popjoy "on his house in Hungerford, brick and tiled, in tenure of Elizabeth Martin, baker, £70; on outhouse, thatched, adjoining £30." On his house only in 4 tenements, thatched, in Hungerford in the tenure of John Bazin, John Banister, widow Tyler and Benjamin Wren £100. Total £200. [John Bazing buried 1771; John Banister buried 1770; Ruth Tyler widow buried 1754; Benjamin Wren buried 1781]

In 1774 there is an entry "John Westbury(?) for house late Sare's", q.r.4d, which has then been deleted prior to 1780 and over-written "Thomas Perry, late Westbury's". John Westbury's name, however, remains in position on the Commoner;'s List of 1781. In 1795 it is clearly marked as Thomas Perry, late Westbury, and so in 1805 with an addition in a later hand of James Little. In 1818 it is James Little, late Westbury's, and so in 1832 and 1836 (late Perry's). The QR of the 1920s ascribes it to the then International Stores, now in part of the Co-op complex.

The early history of the site (pre 1676) takes us back via Batt (1609), but this early period is confused, Batt possessing two neighbouring tenements, one of them a former chantry leasehold.

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John Popejoy PROB 11/928(147) PCC 1767

John Popejoy of Hungerford, Berkshire, yeoman

To Edward Marson of Chilton Foliat, innholder, my freehold cottages gardens [etc] in Hungerford in occupation of John Culimore, Thomas Bradford, Elizabeth Beazy widow, and John Bazing as tenants to me, and also 4 acres of arable in 2 several pieces in one of the common fields of Hungerford called the Breach, also all my other acre of arable in Pidding Field.

To kinsman John Francis Popejoy, grandson of my late brother William Popejoy deceased, £5

To my late brother William Popejoy deceased, :£5

To niece Amy Phillpot, daughter of my late sister Ann? Mortemor? deceased £5

To sister in law Ann Winter £5 To godson Edward Winter, son of Ann £5

To my sister in law Martha Edie otherwise Edy now residing in or about London: £5

To nephew John Popejoy and William Popejoy both of Stanton, Wilts, labourers,sons of my late brother Nathaniel Popejoy deceased and my 2 nieces Jane Popejoy and Mary Popejoy both of Hungerford, spinsters, daughters of my late brother Thomas Popejoy deceased, £75 each. Also to nieces the principal and interest due to me by virtue of an indenture of assignment of Mortgage dated 7 April 1749 transferred to me by Thomas Staverton then of Henley, Oxon, malster, of a messuage, garden and appurtenances in Hungerford aforesaid heretofore the property of Joseph Sare deceased, now in possession of Jane and Mary Popejoy, with all the deeds relating. Also to nephews and nieces, John, William, Jane and Mary, all household goods etc. being in that part of the messuage where in I now dwell in Hungerford (except goods that are property of my late sister-in-law Mary Smith, widow, deceased) with all my wood, both my carts and a gelding To nieces: crop of corn clover and grass in said 5 acres To my half brother Richard Popejoy of Ramsbury, labourer: 1 shilling

Residue to Edward Marson, executor 6 June 1766 Witnesses: James Shipton, John Westbury, Thomas Mundy Proved 4 April 1767 to Edward Marson

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Sare's Cottage adjoining No. 13HS [we believe this is 14 HS – HP & LP] and Church Croft:

E112/Geo III/ Berks / 1369 / 43

Frances Sare married John Nennett, a London periwig maker, and in 1769 they claimed a property in Hungerford which had belonged to Frances' father Joseph Sare. This is described as a messuage abutting and abounding near Jonathan Pearce's house in the Green in Hungerford of the yearly value of £10, and worth £200 or upwards. The Green presumably was the formerly unbuilt-up area known as Church Croft.

Joseph Sare died in 1752, Joanna in August 1753. There were then five children: Richard (died 1755); Joseph (died 1757); John (died 1758); and Mary (died 1766).

Upon the death of Joanna, the Churchwardens and Overseers of the parish, on the grounds that they had some demand on the assets of Joseph, hot possession of the messuage and received from it all rents and incomes.

In reply (1771) the defendants claim that the tenement which the plaintiffs pursue is different from that set out above both as to situation and as to value, and consists only of one small cottage fit only for the habitation of a parish pauper or day labourer, and is situate in or near the Church Croft, value about 30 shillings p.a., and not more than £20 if sold.

The Churchwardens have been in possession for about 33 years (i.e. since c.1738, or roughly Richard's death),and has been used by them for the benefit of the poor.

23 years ago (i.e. c.1748) Joseph and Joanna were in possessions, but the Churchwardens had them ejected from the cottage proper to make room for Daniel Hunt and family, a pauper. Joseph and Joanna continued to live in an outhouse belonging to the cottage. Later, possibly after Joseph's death, Joanna was permitted to live in the cottage with her family until her death.

"Defs"? (?defendants?) think that at one time the cottage may have belonged to Joseph's ancestors.

Before 33 years ago (c.1738) the cottage belonged to Nicholas Fielder who sold the cottage to the Churchwardens for a term of years to be held in trust.

The will of Thomas Sare made in 1682 (probate 1689) refers to three several dwellings in Church Croft in occupation of John Savage, Ursula Kemp and John Boone. They were left to Thomas' son Joseph. Joseph does not mention them in his will of 1714, nor apparently his mother Edith in 1691 (probate 1698).

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The will of Richard Sare of Hungerford, baker, DS 1737:

To wife, Eleanor all that messuage or tenement wherein I now dwell in Hungerford with outhouse, garden, backside, commons and appurtenances (except two tenements and two gardens now in the several tenure or occupation of Thomas Pearce als Noon and John Webb) for term of her natural life, then to son Joseph.

To wife Eleanor all my messuage or tenement on east side of High Street in Hungerford between a messuage there of John Whineatt on the North and a messuage of Thomas Liddiard on South, together with the malthouse and outhouses garden, orchard, backside, commons and appurtenances now in several tenures of John Chalk and Hugh Cooper. And also the two tenements excepted (see above) in tenure of Thomas Pearce and John Webb, to have and hold forever.

Also to wife, two acres of arable in Everlonge and one acre arable in Breach.

Also one yard of arable in Duddlefield with commons and appurtenances belonging, forever.

Also to wife all my title etc in all that Freehold messuage also on East side of High Street, adjoining on North to a messuage of James Pearson Gent. together with the grainerys screening house, kiln, outhouses,, backside, stable, garden, commons and appurtenances, now in the occupation of my sister in law Mary Sare, to her forever.

To wife also all titles etc in that leasehold messuage also on the East side of Hungerford adjoining on the North to the last mentioned Freehold messuage with the grainery, Malthouse, outhouses, backsides, garden, orchards, commons and appurtenances, now also in occupation of my sister-in-law, Mary Sare, now helf by lease granted by James Simpkins Gent. Deceased, determinable on the lives therein mentioned, to be held by wife Fran ..?.. decease of my sister-in-law Mary for the remaineder of the term.

Also to my wife: all household goods (except 1 boulting mill compleat, 2 meal bins, a box in the meal loft; the moulding boards, brass panne and brass kettles in the bake house) of which she can have use during her life and after her death, then these excepted goods to Joseph.

Residue to Eleanor, executrix.

I desire Eleanor during her life or in her will to give my son James Sare and my daughter Anne and Sarah Sare £100 each.

18 Nov 1734

Witness: John Sherwood, George Garrard, Jos. Jennings.
Proved 22 June 1737 to Eleanor.

See also:

- Postal History of Hungerford