Page:The History of the Church & Manor of Wigan part 2.djvu/45

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History of the Church and Manor of Wigan.

"Bill of complaint of John Bridgeman, Doctor of Divinity, and parson of the parsonage of Wigan, who was seized in fee among other things of two water mills, or fulling mills, and one water corn mill, with the appurtenances, in the parish of Wigan, as in right of the said parsonage, which he let to persons in Wigan at a yearly rent, who in their turn have underlet the same. The premises being let to William Langshawe, parishioner of Wigan, he combined and confederated with one Hugh Langshawe, Ralph Astley the elder, Ralph Astley the younger, Edmund Greene and John Anderton, and having by indirect means obtained possession of the deeds and evidences proving the complainant's title to the estate, and of the said mills, and by colour of the said possession, have declared themselves owners of the mills, and have unlawfully entered the same and expulsed the complainant, at the same time taking all profits and issues. Besides which he, the said Langshawe, has neglected the mills, so that they are ready to fall to the ground. With regard to the other mill, Cycilie Milner has unlawfully entered into and possessed herself of the same without yielding any recompense to the complainant. He (the complainant) states that Edward Fleetwood, late parson of Wigan, exhibited a bill of complaint against the said William Langshawe and Robert Pennington and Thomas Pennington complaining of such or the like matters touching one of the said mills. The defendants having answered, a commission was awarded for examination of witnesses on both parts; and, the said commission being executed and the depositions being certified into this court, the cause received a full legal and judicial hearing; upon which hearing a peremptory order, in the term of Easter in the 27th year of the reign of Elizabeth, was set down and made to this effect, viz., that whereas in Hillary term upon the hearing of the matter on behalf of the plaintiff (Edward Fleetwood), in the absence of the defendant, it appeared that the plaintiff in right of his church was seized of the mill then in controversy to him and to his successors, Pennington (defendant) should avoid possession of the same; and