history and maps

Cottingham - name, size and location

Ancient and Roman Britain

Mercia

Anglo Saxon Chronicle

Domesday Book

The Hundreds

Rockingham Forest

Rockingham Castle

landowners & copyholders

The Church, tithes & glebe

Kelly's Directories

Anglo Saxon Chronicle

The Anglo Saxon Chronicle was created in the early 890s under the orders of King Alfred the Great. Going back to AD 1, the Chronicle was a year-by-year record of events maintained by clerks at great ecclesiastical centres until the mid 12th Century. At Peterborough Abbey, the chronicle was maintained until 1155, and it is in these records, that we find a mention of Cottingham.

Between 1135 and 1154, under the reign of King Stephen, England descended into civil war. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle observes that the rich men in England rebelled against Stephen, filling the land with castles built by forced labour. The ordinary folk were taxed, imprisoned and tortured. When they had no more to give, the landowners plundered and burned towns and churches and, with the land laid bare, the townsfolk died of hunger.

Against this backdrop, the great abbey of Peterborough was controlled by a prior Martin de Bec. At this time, the church was extremely powerful, and owned a great deal of land. The Chronicle records that, since 1132, Martin had significantly enriched the abbey with lands and rents and, in 1140, he "brought them to the new minster". 

The Chronicle reports that, in 1197, Martin, under the authority of the Pope, "got in the lands that rich men retained by force. From William Mauduit, who held the castle of Rockingham, he won Cotingham and Easton; and from Hugh de Walteville, he won Hirtlingbury and Stanwick, and sixty shillings from Oldwinkle"

For further information about the power of the church in Cottingham up until the 16th Century, click here.

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