Ash Parish Poor Relief 1574


1572 Vagabonds Act – – This legislation, often referred to as the 1572 Poor Law, was an early precursor to the modern welfare state. The Act formally moved responsibility for poor citizens from the church to local communities by introducing a tax to raise funds for their provision. In each parish, a Justice of the Peace was required to register those who were poor and unwell and distribute relief to those who were in need. 

A two-page document from the Surrey History Centre shows the residents of Ash who contributed to, and received help from, the Ash Parish Poor Relief Fund mandated by Parliament during the reign of Elizabeth I. This 1574 document captures all the groups of Ash residents – – the Gentry, the Clergy, the Yeoman Farmers, the tenant farmers, the Labouring Poor, and those who found themselves in need of Parish Relief.

Ash Residents Who Paid the Poor Rate in 1574 ~ Amount Owed Based on Value of Goods ~ Most People Paid 2 to 3 Pence

Francis Browne EsquireBrother of Viscount Montague, Keeper of Henley Manor, and well-documented as a Catholic recusant who was fined for not attending a Church of England church. Amount paid: £3
Walter CresswellCresswell family of Westwood House in Ash; steward for Viscount Montague. Amount paid: £2/5s
John GroveNo records found. Amount paid: 5s
Henry StevensAsh Manor farming family; Henry Stevens, Yeoman, burial in Ash 1606. Amount paid: 5s
George RussellAsh farming family; George Russell married Annis Heather at Ash 1566. Amount paid: 1s
John BoylettAsh Husbandman Farmer; baptised in Ash 1553 and buried in Ash 1599, left a Will. Amount paid: 5s
Thomas MongerMonger Family combined farming with pottery making; Thomas buried in Ash 1579;
Robert PurseHusbandman of Ash; buried in Ash 1599;
John StonnerBuried at Ash 1598;
Richard HamondWife Rose buried in Ash 1571;
Henry OckleyHenry Ockley married Joan Russell in Ash 1570 – both from Ash farming families;
The Parson (….)Word following ‘The Parson’ is illegible; Anthony Penrith was Curate of Ash in 1574 employed by the Rector, George Stoughton; the tax would have been levied on the Rector. Amount paid: £2
Richard BristowMember of the Bristow Family of Frimley, Yeomen land-owning farmers. Amount paid: 5s
John ChewterTenant farmer of Cleygate Manor;
John SawyerTenant farmer of Cleygate Manor 1576;
John MongerBaptized in Ash 1552; Monger Family combined farming with pottery making;
John WestThe West family was a Yeoman family of Ash that became prominent in the 1600’s;
John JewerBaptized at Ash 1551;
Thomas PadickCleygate Manor records death in 1586;
Henry DinckerProbably Henry Driker tenant farmer of Cleygate Manor 1581;
Richard BayleySon William baptised in Ash 1578; tenant farmer of Cleygate Manor 1588;
Robert MoonBaptised at Ash 1567; the Moon family were land-owning farmers;
Richard FosterBuried at Ash 1596;
Lawrence PurseBuried at Ash 1583; tenant farmer of Cleygate Manor;
Total collected£8

Residents Who Received Poor Relief in Ash in 1574

Webbe’s widow and their childrenRobert Webb buried at Ash 1572;
Thomas Turner and his wifeThomas Turner buried at Ash 1582;
Thomas Aslett and his wife and six childrenNo record for Thomas but possibly his daughter Elizabeth Aslett married George Wakeford in Ash in 1599;
Alice Dayer widowMany variations of ‘Dayer’;
Goring and his wife and two childrenGoring was an Ash family name. Henry Goring’s son John was baptized at Ash in 1574;
George MabankNo record found for George; other members of Mabank family in Ash;

Debits weekly to each child 12d. The next section was a little hard to read:- .… such dwelling houses and they all doth work towards their livings and many do go about abegging … as nobody is there so as sees

Select Sources

  • Surrey History Centre, Woking
  • Ash Parish BMD Register Volume 1
  • Parliament.UK
  • Normandy Cleygate Manor records