The Visitation Pedigrees for Worcestershire begin the Washbourne pedigree with Sir Roger Washbourne, Knight. In “A History of the County of Worcester Vol. 4”, originally published by Victoria County History (VCH), London, 1924 and distributed on the internet via BHO under Parishes: Stanford-on-Teme, VCH suggests that this Roger may have been preceded by a William: “William Washbourne was dealing with land in Stanford in 1255–6 and was apparently succeeded shortly after by Roger Washbourne…”
An Eyre Court record in Worcestershire dated July 1255 may provide us with the name of this Roger’s father. “Adam le Charpent[er], the father of John de Hull” is claiming that Adam “had seisin in demesne of one house, one mill and six acres of land in Stanford.” Roger contests this assertion saying rather that Adam did not die seized of the property. “Adam did not die in seisin as of fee, except [he held it] for life of the demise of William de Wasseburn, the father of Roger.” John also says that William “enfeoffed him and took his homage.” From this we may discern that William was Roger’s father and that William was in a position to enfeof subtenants and take their homage. It appears that this William may have been holding part of the manor of Stanford-on-Teme. Perhaps this is the same William:
1242: In Stanford Wasseburne due partes unius feodi quas Willelmus de Wasseburne tenet de domina Matillide de Treuegoyd, ipsa de Waltero de Crauele, Walterus de Waltero de Clifford, Walterus de heredibus de Tony, heredes de Tony de domino rege. Liber Feodorum
In 1258 we find Roger continuing the same argument with John de la Hulle, son of Adam above – over the same property:
CP 25/1/258/8, number 6:
Parties: Roger de Wasseburne, demandant, and John de La Hulle, tenant.
Property: 1 messuage, 1 mill and 6 acres of land in Stanford'.
Agreement: John has acknowledged the tenements to be the right of Roger and has rendered them to him in the court and has remised and quitclaimed them from himself and his heirs to Roger and his heirs for ever. For this, Roger has given John 10 marks of silver.
So, it would seem likely that Sir Roger de Washbourne’s father was William de Washbourne, dead prior to July 1255.
Another clue indicating that we may be dealing with Sir Roger is that almost immediately after his father’s death, finding himself now holding sufficient land to obligate him to knighthood or pay a fine, Roger chose the latter option:
“Roger de Wasseburn’ has made fine with the king by half a mark of gold for having respite from knighthood. Order to the sheriff of Worcestershire to take security from the aforesaid Roger for rendering that gold into the king’s Wardrobe at next St. Edward.” Fine Roll C 60/53, 40 HENRY III 739
A 1275 Eyre Court record declares that Roger is still not a Knight and so is in mercy.
The Visitation Pedigree and other records refer to Roger as “Sir Roger’ so at some point he did apparently accept Knighthood.
Returning to VCH, we do find a small discrepancy. VCH says
“William Washbourne was dealing with land in Stanford in 1255–6 and was apparently succeeded shortly after by Roger Washbourne…”
But the footnote attached to this William [fn.15] directs us to: (CP25/1/258/7, no. 43)
In this fine, dated to October 1255, we find a William de Wasseburn, negotiating with a Nicholas, son of John de Stanford, over a house and one and a half virgates of land in Stanford. The William who was father of Roger died prior to July 1255 so this appears to be an entirely new William dealing with an entirely different person on an entirely different plot of land in Stanford.
Records of William de Washbourne(s) from this period active in or near Stanford:
On a jury list from 1274/75 the Hundred of Dodingtree (location of Stanford) we find Rogerus de Wasseburne and Wills' de Wasseburne.
A William de Wasseburn is found witnessing a grant of land in Kyre Park Charter #3 dated to c. 1279 by analysis of the entire witness list.
Lay Subsidy Roll Worcestershire c. 1280 – Stanford. The first entry reads: De Rogero de Wasebur’ xviiis. The second entry reads: William de eadem vis.
What does “de eadem” in this context mean? Does it mean William was closely associated with Roger? Or, does it simply mean that William was of Stanford? If that was the meaning, why not simply add “de eadem” to all the other names at Stanford – or is that the modern perspective expecting too much consistency from the medieval mind? Is it pertinent that that this William was listed right after Roger, with order of listing indicating rank in the area and also that he was paying the second highest tax at Stanford? Is it probable that the William on the LSR 1280 was the same William appearing with Roger on the Jury list 1274/5? William may have been Roger’s eldest son, brother or some other relative. We assume that they were related as they both held land in Stanford-on-Teme and shared the same surname. If he was Roger’s eldest son, he died prior to 1294/5 as that is the year that Sir John de Washbourne was confirmed as Roger’s heir.
WRIT OF AD QUOD DAMNUM, AS TO THE NUNNERY OF WESTWOOD.
Inquisition made by the oath of William de Cokessy, John de
Lanwera', William de Wasseburn, John le Juvene, Thomas de Melyng,
Stephen de Menchace, William de la Stapele, Henry Inggeram, John
de Nodeford, Eraald de Pregele, John le Parker, and William Gamel',
[Note: the Cokessys were tenants under the Abbot of Evesham as were the Washbournes.]
Link to BHO Page on Stanford on Teme: https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/worcs/vol4/pp341-345
Link to the 1255 Eyre Court Record: http://aalt.law.uh.edu/AALT4/JUST1/JUST1no1022/aJUST1no1022fronts/IMG_1843.htm