KIRKBY HALL 

        

HOME OF THE NOEL FAMILY

Later the residence of the famous ADA LOVELACE ,

 Ada the mathematician click here for details  

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH AND PARISH OF KIRKBY MALLORY      By Dorothy Fox

HISTORY and ANTIQUITIES of LEICESTERSHIRE By John Nichols
LADY BYRON AND EARL SHILTON        By David Herbert

 Kirkby Hall was built by the Noel family and dates back to the 17th century   

             John Noel, the younger son of Andrew Noel, Sheriff of Rutland, married the heiress Anne Fowler, daughter of  John and Barbara Fowler. Barbara was one of 4 daughters of Thomas Harvey of Elmsthorpe. In 1541, Thomas Harvey had been granted the Lordship of the Manor of Kirkby Mallory by King Henry VIII . Harvey died 3 years later and left Anne property and estates at Elmsthorpe, Kirkby Mallory, Peckleton and Earl Shilton
            

           John Noel died in 1593 and was succeeded by his eldest surviving son William who in 1604 was made High Sheriff of Leicester .William Noel`s eldest son died without issue leaving his 2nd son Verney to inherited the estates. Verny went on to marry Elizabeth Dixy, the 2nd daughter of Sir Wolston Dixy, (Wolston was Knighted by Charles 1st in 1604) .

Their only son William married Margaret Lovelace, daughter of John Lord Lovelace.

For their Post Nuptial agreement 1663, see Dudly Archives ref No.DE/2/188 (Blackcountryhistory)

Their eldest son Thomas was to die without issue in 1688 leaving John Noel heir to his brothers estate.
           The earliest records for the Hall`s existence, is the Hearth Tax returns for 1666 .
Sir John Noel`s estate as described in a Rent Roll in 1696 is as follows " The Manor of Kirkby Malory , The mansion house with spacious fine gardens and orchard and belonging to it a very fine wood . A large park very well wooded and stored with deer ".   

The text then go`s on to list some 32 names of the various tenants and the amount of rent paid by each amounting to a total of £565 -10s - 0 . A reference was also made to the Wind Mill and Water Mill on the estate, acknowledging payment in their case of £22.
click here to see enlargement of Kirkby Hall
               Sir Edward Noel married Judith Lamb and succeeded to the title 9th Baron Wentworth . His son and heir Thomas was born November 1745. Three daughters were then to follow. Judith, Elizabeth and Sophia born 1758. Tragically Lady Wentworth died in 1761. Sir Edward died in 1774 and is buried at Kirkby Mallory alongside his wife. His funeral was such that the Rector felt obliged to write the following lines along side his entry in the Church Records Book.......

.November 8th.1774 Edward Noel Lord Viscount 39 years was buried privately being carried to church by 8 of his labourers & the pall bore by 10 tenants & their sons of this parish, his children, brother & sister attending him to the grave.
          

Thomas Noel now became 2nd Viscount Wentworth with his seat at Kirkby Mallory Hall. His younger sister Sophia married Nathaniel Curzon , son and heir of Lord Scarsdale of Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire . Elizabeth married James Bland -Burges and Judith married Ralph Milbank on the 9th of January 1777, the marriage taking place in Kirkby church.and was performed by Judith`s uncle, the Rector Rowney Noel.
           
In 1788 at the age of 42 Lord Wentworth (Thomas Noel ) married Mary, Countess Ligonier, but the marriage produced no children .Lord Wentworth did however have two illegitimate children, a daughter named Anna and a son Thomas. When Lord Wentworth died in 1815 the bulk of his estate passed to his sister Judith Milbank, then living at Seaham in County Durham . Forced by the terms of the Will to change their names to Noel, Lady Judith and Sir Ralph came to live at Kirkby Mallory Hall . Lady Judith not only inherited the Manors of Kirkby Mallory but also of Peckleton, Desford, Elmsthorpe, Barwell and Stapleton.

Judith, suffering from poor health was to live at Kirkby for about seven years before dying on the 28th of January 1822. so ending the Noel family association with the village. However, Lady Judith and Sir Ralph Milbank as he was then, had a daughter named Annabella .
                 
In 1812 at the age of 20 Annabella was living in London ,and it was while she was there that she met the famous poet, Byron .

     Lady Elizabeth Melbourne, (Annabella`s father's sister), being one of the most fashionable hostesses in London had invited Byron along with Annabella to one of her house parties. Three years later on January 2nd 1815 George Byron, now the 6th Lord Byron married Annbella Milbank . The marriage however was doomed to failure, stories and gossip of Byrons alleged outrageous behaviour made the relationship impossible .

However Lady Byron did gave birth to a daughter on the 10th of December 1815. who was subsequently named Augusta, Ada, Byron. The marriage had by this time broken down irretrievably, so shortly after the birth, Lady Byron took her daughter and moved to Kirkby Mallory Hall to stay with her parents Lady Judith and Sir Ralph Noel, ( formally Milbank)

Lord Byron, finding himself evermore alienated finally signed a deed of separation and on the 23rd of April set sail from Dover for the continent, never to see his daughter again.
After the separation, Ada, was brought up by her mother at Kirkby Mallory Hall, receiving her schooling under the supervision of several eminent tutors.

  After the death of Lady Judith in 1822 the hall stood empty as .
             Lady Byron and Ada chose to live in various houses in the south, while making only brief visits to the area for the purpose of administrating the estate.


 

THE BYRON SEALS


 

 

 

 

 Belonging to Lady Byron

1850

 Presented to Lady Byron by Her Majesty G.D.1862

 Seal of Admiral Byron who wrote the "Loss of The Wager" called by the sailors "Foul Weather Jack"

 

Many thanks to Mr. David Jackson-Grant for sending in the photo-copies of the above Byron seals. The reverse side of the cards all have identical text, being          
   Mrs Augustus Byron              Miss Byron                   Kirkby Mallory
     Any further information on the above seals would be most welcome particularly on "Foul Weather Jack"    

The Hon. Augustus Byron was the Rector of Kirkby Mallory church until his death in 1902. His portrait hung in the school room for many years until its closure in the late 60`s. Augustus was the third son of George Anson Byron who in turn was cousin to Lord Byron the poet.

        

            In 1833 the estate was bought by the Baroness Sophia de Clifford who moved into the Hall in that year with her Husband and family of 4 plus a staff of 14 servants. The family lived at the Hall until the late 1880`s. Sophia had died in 1874 and was commemorated by the villagers with a wall plaque inside the Church.
            Herbert Clarkson Hartley was the last owner of the estate prior to the sale in 1921 in which the Hall and the various properties were sold off. The Hall again stood empty for several years until finally being demolished about 1950. Following some considerable landscaping work, a racing circuit was eventually constructed and the estate became known as the "Mallory Park Racing Circuit".

For a more in depth account of the Mallory Park Estate and the families who lived there, then the recently published book comes highly recommended.

     "Mallory Park" Portrait of a County Estate by Gareth Evans   

 ISBN O 951951910264   


 Mallory Park Racing Circuit.

 

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