Catalogue description LOWNDES of CHESHAM

This record is held by Buckinghamshire Archives

Details of D-LO
Reference: D-LO

For the local historian, the documents of title to the Grove, Bury and especially Hundridge manors fill gaps left in standard authorities such as the V.C.H. Some fine estate maps are included in this deposit. The building accounts of Winslow Hall and the Bury are detailed and the large number of eighteenth century recipes are also of interest. Further afield, the growth of London is documented in plans for the building of houses on the Lowndes estate in Knightsbridge. This project was entrusted to the successful builder and entrepreneur Thomas Cubitt (1788-1855; see D.N.B.). Documents of significance to national history include an account of the reasons for the failure to provide adequate supplies for troops in the seventeenth century Irish campaigns, and a Marine Insurance Company subscribers' minute book (1719).


This archive includes a number of documents which present curious physical features. Apart from the very large pedigree which has already been alluded to, the early eighteenth century survey rolls may be noted. The rolls, which are made up of membranes sewn end to end, in a manner possibly borrowed from Treasury practice, are amongst the longest documents in the Office: the second roll, D-LO/4/2, is some 52ft.long.


DGJ April 1985

Date: 1498-1898







1/1/1-57 Chesham Bury Manor acquired in 1687


1/2/1-64 Grove Manor acquired from 1692 (with Grove Farm)


1/3/1-44 Hundridge Manor acquired in 1742


Other property


Public Houses


1/4/1-17 Cocks' House, with brewhouse and public house known as the Bell; other public houses incl. the Red Lion, the Maiden Head and the King's Head in Chesham and the Nag's Head in Amersham included in a mortgage redeemed in 1702.


Bush Grove Farm


1/5/1-4 Bush Grove Farm acquired in 1716


Bellingdon Farm


1/6/1-72 Geary's Farm in Bellingdon, later Bellingdon Farm, acquired in 1721


1/7/1-4 Dodds Close in Bellingdon, acquired in 1723 and 1726


Moor Farm


1/8/1-54 Moor Farm, acquired in 1725


1/9/1-55 Moor Farm: land in West Dean common field acquired in several parcels, 1707-1777


1/10/1-4 Moor Farm: parcel called Howsesides acquired in 1741


1/11/1-16 Moor Farm: The Holts, acquired in 1750


Cottages at Frogmore


1/12/1-13 Cottage at Frogmore in the manor of Peterleystone Netherburye and Missenden Magna, acquired in 1741


1/13/1-19 As above, acquired in 1744


1/14/1-8 As above, acquired in 1768


1/15/1-2 Land at Frogmore on which a cottage formerly stood, acquired in 1777


1/16/1-11 Cottage and land at Frogmore in manor of Chesham Higham, acquired in 1806


1/17/1-8 Cottages in Frogmore, in the manor of Chesham Higham, acquired in 1817


Later eighteenth century acquisitions


1/18/1-5 Close called Little Hawkes in Botleys, acquired in 1756


1/19/1-46 Property belonging to the Pinchbeck family, incl. Pittfield, Great Pittfield, Long Close, Bottom Close, Whitehill Pond, Mead Cross, Lane Close, Holts Lane Close, Meadow Barn Mead and New Mead, two closes in West Dean and a messuage in Church End part of which was acquired in 1767


1/20/1-26 Property belonging to the Duncombe family, incl. Pednor Mead, acquired in 1789


1/21/1-13 Tithes of the almshouses land of Rose Acre and other property; copyholds and quit rent on Frekridge Field, acquired in 1792


1/22/1-24 Cudmore in Chartridge and Cottage at Bury Hill, presumed to have been acquired in 1802


Acquisitions by Lowndes trustees


1/23/1-30 Property belonging to the Ware family, incl. 2 messuages in Chesham Town, messuage formerly known as the Bell and 2 closes called The Worthies, presumed to have been acquired in 1816


1/24/1-20 Messuage and two cottages acquired in 1831


1/25/1 Hyde Heath in Hundridge, mutual conveyance, 1832


1/26/1-2 Copyhold admissions to property already part of the estate, on the inheritance of William Lowndes in 1834


Acquisitions by William Lowndes (1807-1864)


1/27/1-15 Close of land in Chartridge, acquired in 1836


1/28/1-4 Messuage and land at Bury Hill End, acquired in 1837


1/29/1-4 Five undivided fifth parts of an undivided moiety of a customary tenement and close of land in Chartridge acquired in 1838


1/30/1-14 Cannon Mill, land and tithes, acquired in 1839


1/31/1-9 Customary messuage called Bucktofts, acquired in 1840


1/32/1-38 Copyhold messuage in Bellingdon, acquired in 1840


1/33/1-17 Presmoor (later Presmore) Farm in Ashley Green, presumed to have been acquired in 1844


1/34/1-12 Blacksmith's shop in Church End, acquired in 1846


1/35/1-50 Property belonging to the Nash family, incl. land at Whelpley Hill, acquired in 1848


1/36/1-12 Copyhold property in Bellingdon, incl. Cross Leys Hill (formerly Cottsloe Hills) and Shippenwicks (formerly Cottsloe Hill Meadow) acquired in 1856


1/37/1-19 Property belonging to the Johnson family, incl. several cottages in Church Street and Parsonage Lane and Bottom Farm in Chartridge, purchased at auction in 1856.


1/38/1-13 Miscellaneous: deeds relating to Chesham




1/39/1-49 Messuage called Cokes with lands lying in Amersham and Chalfont St. Giles, added to the estate in 1832[?]




1/40/1-14 Property belonging to the Newell family, incl. capital messuage and land in Walton and Stoke Mandeville common fields and other property incl. Red Angel in Aylesbury; close and liberty to dig clay in Aylesbury, acquired in 1739




1/41/1-8 Messuage in Ledburn with 40a. of pasture. [Relationship to Lowndes estate unclear]




1/42/1-10 Goddards Wood, acquired in 1693


1/42/11 Piece of garden ground, acquired in 1851




1/43/1-2 Pond Close, acquired in 1708


WOODBANK (Cheshire)


1/44/1 Messuage and land, 1699




1/45/1 Land, 1734




1/46/1-11 Marsh land, 1692


FULHAM (Middlesex)


1/47/1 Property in Manor of Fulham, 1670




D-LO/3/1-42 WILLS










1. Leases and agreements to lease


Trusts and Executorships


2. Deeds and related documents


Conveyancing and general legal matters


3. Draft documents, mostly deeds


4. Solicitors' correspondence and miscellanea


5. Accounts of legal costs




6. Arbitrations and court cases


Estate management


7. Estate correspondence


8. Inclosure and tithe commutation correspondence and memoranda


9. Estate accounts and vouchers


10. Building accounts


11. Land and income tax receipts; rate vouchers and memoranda


12. Financial miscellanea


13. Valuation and Insurance


14. Crop and property records


Knightsbridge estate development


15. Accounts, memoranda and plans.


Household accounts and memoranda


16. Accounts


17. Recipes


18. Poems, epigrams, broadsheets and familial miscellanea






Shales - Leheup - Barrington families


1. Deeds


2. Charles Shales, deceased, Oct. 1734: business and executors' papers


3. Peter Leheup: business papers


4. Barrington family: pedigree


Osborne family


5. Certificates of baptisms


Kingston family


6. Papers of Mary, Francis and John Kingston


Charles Lyall


7. Account and bank books


8. Business correspondence


9. Property and household accounts




1. Parish and county business


2. Poor Law Health and Sanitation


3. Burial and Sickness Clubs


4. Education


5. Prison service


6. The Arts


7. Butterfield Charity


8. Lowndes vault and church inscriptions


9. Christ Church, Chesham Waterside


10. Chesham St. Mary's rstoration


11. Miscellanea




1. Marine Insurance


2. Building in Spring Garden area in Middlesex


3. Chesham Chalybeate Spring


4. Proposed Watford to Wendover Railway


5. London, Buckinghamshire and West Midland Junction Railway

Related material:

As with most families of a certain standing in the county, information about individual members of the Lowndes family can be found in the various standard county sources such as Quarter Sessions papers or poll books. More importantly, however, a number of documents relating to the estate survive apart from the papers in this accumulation and include:


D/CH/37-434 Deeds to various properties in Chesham, incl. Cadmore Spring and Ley Hill


D/CH/A/12, 13 Deeds relating to Cokes and Reeves in Chesham


D/CN/Box 19/VII Deeds relating to Nashleigh farm


D/29/1 Deed relating to Hundridge farm


D/X 480/1 Notes on Chesham History. (The latter half of the book, from p.45, is written by W.Lowndes (d.1905), the former possibly by his grandfather)


D/X 168/1-22 Deeds to various Chesham properties incl. West Dean


D/X 37 Deeds to various Chesham properties owned by the Chase and Ware families


1) The three notebooks kept by William Lowndes (1652-1724) described in Records of Bucks., XII, pp. 125-136, were in the custody of B.A.S.


[Transferred to BRO, 1999-AR 65/99]


2) The detailed account of the building of Winslow Hall described in Records of Buckinghamshire, XI pp. 406-429 is in private hands.


3) A list of the substantial archive of the Lowndes-Stone estate of Brightwell Park preserved in Oxfordshire County Record Office is available in the search room.


4) 'Ways and Means' Lowndes's official papers are deposited in the Public Office Treasury series (T.48).

Held by: Buckinghamshire Archives, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Lowndes family of Chesham, Buckinghamshire

Physical description: 11 series
Immediate source of acquisition:

BRA 651 (not accessioned)


AR 37/57


AR 86/83


The large 1862 pedigree, D-LO/5/12, [AR 37/57], was acquired by purchase in 1957.


Items marked thus [0] are part of the second BRA deposit (AR 86/83)

  • Chesham, Buckinghamshire
Administrative / biographical background:

Although the Lowndes family pedigree chronicles its descent from William de Loundes who accompanied William the Conqueror in 1066, the family connection with the county of Buckinghamshire can only be traced back with any certainty to the sixteenth century. The family was then settled at Winslow, where it had a vault. The purchase by William Lowndes (1652-1724) in 1692 and 1697 of further estates in Chesham and Winslow reinforced the association.


For the most part, the records in this accumulation document the descent of the Chesham property, which, on William Lowndes' death in 1724, passed on to his third surviving son Charles (the eldest surviving son of his fourth marriage). Charles, who contributed much to the enlargement of the Chesham estate was in turn succeeded in direct male line down to 1905 by four William Lowndes. Although the papers here concern this branch of the family, some knowledge of the descent of the Winslow estate provides useful background information, as the Winslow Lowndes also feature in many of the documents described here. The summary pedigree appended to this introduction might perhaps be used with the following biographical sketches.


William Lowndes (1652-1724) ('Ways & Means' Lowndes). See Dictionary of National Biography for an account of his distinguished career in the Treasury which began in 1679. He was Secretary to the Treasury under Godolphin. Some discrepancies occur between the D.N.B. and Gibbs' Worthies in the summaries of his early life, but there is no doubt that he married four times, and that his extensive estates were divided between the eldest surviving sons of three of his marriages: Robert inherited Winslow, William of Astwood Bury became the head of the Oxfordshire (Lowndes-Stone) branch and Charles that of the Chesham family.


In addition to extensive land purchases, William Lowndes also had a large house built in the early years of the eighteenth century, at Winslow, which is still standing (cf. Royal Commission on Historical Monuments, An inventory of the historical monuments in Buckinghamshire, 1913, vol. 2 p.341 et seq., and Records of Buckinghamshire, XI, p.406 et seq.). The Bury at Chesham which was added to and altered in the nineteenth century (cf. Records of Buckinghamshire, IX, opposite p.453, and Pevsner (ed.), Buckinghamshire pp.90-1), may also have been built on his initiative, although the accounts which survive in this accumulation suggest that this may have been Charles Lowndes' work. (See D-LO/6/10/4).


Chesham estate


Charles Lowndes (1699-1783). One of fourteen children, he did not become heir apparent until the death of an older brother, Henry, in 1717. He too was Secretary to the Treasury. He was active in county life, as a Trustee of the Aylesbury Free School and a magistrate. He was involved in the settling of many family affairs, including his mother's estate and a long drawn court case against the Leheups. (His sister Clara had married Peter Leheup). He was buried at Chesham, and was succeeded by his only son.


William Lowndes (1734-1808). Attended Eton, Trinity College Cambridge and was a student at the Middle Temple in 1752. In 1771 he married Lydia Mary Osborne, who died within two years of the marriage and by whom he had a son William. He later had two illegitimate children who were provided for by trust. (cf. Harrington Trust D-LO/6/2/12). He was a commissioner of excise, governor of Christ's Hospital, the Foundling Hospital and the Westminster Infirmary, and was, according to Gibbs, a 'man of letters'. He also acted as captain in the Bucks militia.


(cf. Gibbs Worthies pp.264-6)


William Lowndes (1771-1831), son of Commissioner Lowndes. He too was active in the Bucks militia. His threatened bankruptcy in 1805 led to the tying up of the estate in a trust administered by Charles Lyall and William Sutthery, whose activities are well documented in these papers. The 1807 trust was altered several times and provided for younger children and for further financial difficulties. This William died in Broadstairs in 1831, and was succeeded by his eldest son.


William Lowndes (1807-1864). Trinity Hall Cambridge, and High Sheriff for Bucks in 1848. He was anxious to revive a family claim to the barony of Monthermer about which he collected much information. He married twice and was succeeded by his son. (cf. V.C.H. iii p.211)


William Lowndes (1834-1905) Trinity Hall Cambridge, and Barrister-at-Law. He gathered many documents relating to the family. He died unmarried, and was succeeded by the son of his half-sister. (cf. Burke's Landed Gentry, 1937)


William Frederick Lowndes Frith-Lowndes (b.1871). J.P. for Bucks, assumed the additional name of Lowndes by licence in 1906. (cf. Kelly's Handbook to titled, landed and official classes, 1942)


Winslow (& Whaddon) estate


Robert Lowndes (1678(?)-1727). [Date of baptism given as 1680 in Lowndes Pedigree and 1678 in Burke's Landed Gentry].


Richard Lowndes (1706-1775). One of sixteen children. Sheriff for Bucks 1737-8, Knight of the Shire 1742. Died at Hillesden in 1775, and was buried at Winslow. He was succeeded by his son. (cf. Records of Bucks. VIII, 396. Gibbs Worthies p.264)


William Lowndes (17? -1813). He became William Selby-Lowndes when he inherited the Whaddon Chase estate in 1772, which then descended with Winslow. He was succeeded by his son.


William Selby-Lowndes (1767-1840), Knight of the Shire, became William Lowndes by licence. For details of a court case against him over the ownership of Whaddon, see Records of Buckinghamshire II, p.123. He was succeeded by his son. (cf. V.C.H. iii p.437)


William Selby-Lowndes (1807-1886), M.P. for Bucks., became Lord Winslow and was succeeded by his son.


William Selby-Lowndes (1836-1920), was succeeded by his son.


(cf. Bucke's Landed Gentry, 1937)


William Selby-Lowndes (b.1871), educated at Eton, High Sheriff for Bucks., 1939.


(cf. Kelly's Handbook to titled, landed and official classes, 1942)


The history of the Lowndes papers is complicated. The bulk of the archive was deposited with the Bucks Archaeological Society in 1950, through the intermediary of the British Records Association. It included then documents relating to other counties, notably Hampshire, Essex, London, Hertfordshire, and to Scotland, many of which were transferred to appropriate repositories in those localities.


That part of the archive which remained with the B.A.S. was eventually deposited in the Record Office, with the exception of certain manorial court rolls, which were retained by the B.A.S. until 1987 when they were deposited in the Record Office as part of AR 24/87. These documents can be identified by the B.R.A. stamp, BRA 651. On receipt in the Record Office, certain wills and surveys were placed among the artificial collections of wills and surveys created here, and have only recently been reunited with the archive.


In 1983, a further group of Lowndes papers, many of which completed sequenes in the existing archive, were deposited in the Record Office, again through the BRA [AR 86/83]. This smaller group of records, which has been inserted into the main series, is indicated thus [0] in the following list.

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