RepositoryCambridgeshire Archives
Creator_NameThe Croxton Estate
CalmRefNoK63/1
TitleCroxton Estate documents from the Trustees of Lady Fox
LevelCollection
Date1539 - 1902
DescriptionOverview
The collection was received as a deposit from the estate of Lady Fox, who died in 1981. Born Myra Newton, she inherited the Croxton Estate as daughter of Sir George Douglas Newton (himself created Lord Eltisley in 1934) on the latter's death in 1942.

The collection arrived in some six boxes in little discernible order. This meant that apart from groups of documents that were either tied together, or where one document was folded inside another (this often the case with 'lease and release' pairs) any grouping or ordering which may have existed in the original collection has been lost. Therefore, the initial cataloguing was done by simply taking the items from the boxes in the order they came to hand and numbering them, resulting in a sequence in which a document from 1780 could be followed by one from 1820. The catalogue includes dates for all the documents, and it has been possible to sort them into date order using this information.

Viewed in chronological order, the documents start with copies of sixteenth century records relating to Eltisley Rectory, thirteen items (excerpts in Latin) from the Eltisley manor court rolls of the 1670s, and copies of some wills. After these, they cover in greatest detail the period from 1718 to the death of Samuel Newton in 1848 with a single conveyance from the early 20th century.

The main places mentioned in the records (working round clockwise from NW), are Toseland, Yelling, Eltisley and Croxton. Toseland and Yelling are in the historic county of Huntingdon, whilst Eltisley and Croxton are in Cambridgeshire. Acquisition of these estates by the manor of Croxton meant that eventually all the records descended through them.

Some other places are mentioned, the family surnamed le Grice are from Bury St Edmunds, and Samuel Newton, who came from Bangor in north Wales (but was also said to be from Liverpool), is mentioned in over 30 documents. Several persons mentioned have links to Bocking, now part of Braintree in Essex.

Using these records and other sources such as the Victoria County History and family history websites, an experienced family historian could create quite an extensive network of family connections.

Croxton Manor
The estate entered the Leeds family by a sale c.1571. Several names in the Leeds family occur in the collection, starting with Edward Leeds senior in 1718. Edward had a son, also Edward, on whose death in 1803 the estate passed to his brother Joseph, who died in 1808. Joseph was succeeded by Sir George William Leeds (created Baronet in 1812). The estate was purchased by Samuel Newton (who was descended from a Liverpool merchant), and Samuel's name occurs frequently in the records, starting with his purchase dated 10 November 1826. On Samuel's death in 1848, the estate passed to his grandson, George Onslow Newton, as his son had pre-deceased him. George owned the manor until his death in 1900. His son George D. C. Newton (created Lord Eltisley in 1934), who acquired the rectory estate in 1926, died in 1942, leaving as heir his daughter Myra. She left the estate to her grandson, and by 1982 it had been purchased by a Cambridge businessman, Christopher Curry, who sold off much of the estate; in 1993 c 250 ha, including the house and park, were again sold. The site remains (2000) in single private ownership. In 1985 it was listed grade II by Historic England.

Eltisley Manor
The manor was sold in 1657 to Major-General John Disbrowe (or Desborough), and on his death in 1680 it passed to his eldest surviving son, Valentine, who held it at least until 1706 but had passed it to John Disbrowe by 1710. The manor is said to have been devised by John Disbrowe, by will dated 1741, to the two sons of his nephew, William Walford of Bocking in Essex. In 1789 the Revd. William Walford, Mary Walford, widow, and Thomas Walford sold it to Edward Leeds of Croxton Park. Thereafter the manor has descended with Croxton (see above).

The name Disbrowe/Desborough occurs in these records. Nathaniel Disbrowe was admitted at a manor court of 1678, and John Disbrowe's sale is recorded as a part of the will of John Disbrowe dated 1 December 1741, and proved 6 July 1742, making bequests of property in Eltisley to William and Thomas Walford, sons of John's Nephew William Walford.
Extent9 T1 boxes
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