Monument record MLI115894 - The settlement of Beesby in the Marsh


The settlement of Beesby-in-the-Marsh existed at the time of Domesday and dates from the late Anglo-Saxon period. It survives to the present day.

Type and Period (3)

  • (Early Medieval/Dark Age to Modern - 1000 AD to 2050 AD)
  • (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

The settlement of Beesby-in-the-Marsh existed at the time of Domesday and dates from the late Anglo-Saxon period. It survives to the present day. The name Beesby comes from the Old Norse personal name, 'Besi', and the Old Danish 'by' meaning a farmstead or village. {1} The settlement of Beesby-in-the-Marsh already existed at the time of Domesday when there was a small manor (6 bovates, about 60 acres) belonging to the Frenchman Gocelin, son of Lambert. Before the Norman Conquest this manor had been held by the Anglo-Saxon thegn, Agemund. In 1086 the manor was occupied by Eurold, who held it from Gocelin. There was also a church attached to this manor, presumably on the site of the present church. There was, in addition, a larger land holding in Beesby in 1086 held by Gilbert de Gand, a kinsman of William the Conqueror, who was granted extensive estates in Lincolnshire following the conquest. This larger landholding was of some three carucates (about 360 acres) and included 90 acres of meadow and 180 acres of underwood. This large parcel of land was sokeland of (subordinate to) a manor at Claxby St Andrew. There was also a small piece of Beesby land that was sokeland of a manor at Hagworthingham; only about 30 acres, this was held by Count Alan of Brittany. The minimum population at the time of Domesday was 31 people, 32 if one includes a priest at the church. {2} Hagnaby Abbey was holding land in Beesby by 1281 when there was a dispute over a part of their land recorded in The Hagnaby Chronicle. {3} In 1334 the Lay Subsidy return for Beesby was £3 2s.3d. which was very slightly less than the wapentake average. This indicates that the village was of average prosperity for the area at that time. {4} At the dissolution of the monasteries in the reign of Henry VIII, Hagnaby Abbey held extensive land and property in Beesby. {5} In 1563, thirty-one households were recorded for Beesby in the diocesan returns. {6} In the early eighteenth century, about 1705, there were 27 families attending church services in Beesby although this number had fallen to 19 families by 1723. The reason for this dramatic fall in numbers is unclear. There was also a single Anabaptist family in the parish. {7} The census returns show the population of Beesby in 1801 was 131 persons, rising to a nineteenth century peak of 174 people in 1861, before dropping back to 117 in 1901. {8} Earthwork tofts and enclosures are visible in aerial photographs and have been plotted by the National Mapping Programme. These are visible around the village at TF4643 8006, TF4604 8012, TF4600 8026, TF 4630 8043 and TF4651 8016. There is also ridge and furrow recorded from around the village (see PRNs 49161 and 49162). {9}

Sources/Archives (9)

  •  Bibliographic Reference: Kenneth Cameron. 1998. A Dictionary of Lincolnshire Place-Names. p.12.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: C.W. Foster and T. Longley. 1924. Lincolnshire Domesday and Lindsey Survey. 12/85, 24/63, 28/32.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: Owen, A.E.B.. 1996. The Medieval Lindsey Marsh. p.71.
  •  Article in Serial: R.E. Glasscock. 1964. 'The Lay Subsidy of 1334 for Lincolnshire' in Lincolnshire Architectural and Archaeological Society Reports and Papers. vol.10.2, p.128.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: Sir William Dugdale. 1817-30. Monasticon Anglicanum: a History of the Abbeys and other Monasteries, Hospitals, Friaries, and Cathedral and Collegiate Churches, with their Dependencies, in England and Wales. vol.6.2, pp.892-93.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: Gerald A.J. Hodgett. 1975. Tudor Lincolnshire. appendix 1, p.195.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: R.E.G. Cole. 1913. Speculum Dioeceseos Lincolniensis sub Episcopis Gul: Wake et Edm: Gibson A.D.1705-1723. Part 1: Archdeaconries of Lincoln and Stow. p.13.
  •  Bibliographic Reference: William Page (ed). 1906. The Victoria County History: Lincolnshire - Volume 2. p.368.
  •  Map: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1992-1996. National Mapping Programme. TF4680: LI.435.2.1.



Grid reference Centred TF 4620 8022 (914m by 540m)

Related Monuments/Buildings (3)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (0)

Record last edited

Mar 21 2021 8:35PM


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