Page:The History of the Church & Manor of Wigan part 2.djvu/47

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History of the Church and Manor of Wigan.

being rector of the parish church of Wigan and parson of the parsonage, and being seized of the Town of Wigan or some part thereof, whereof the said fulling mills were and are parcel, in his demesne as of fee in right of the said church, did, as this defendant hath been informed, very long ago, but the certainty of the time thereof this defendant cannot now express, by and with the consent of Sir Robert Banester, knight, then patron of the said church and parsonage, and of Roger, then bishop of Lychefield and Coventry, then ordinary of that place, by deed under his hand and seal, grant, for him and his successors, to the aforesaid burgesses, their heirs and assigns for ever, the said town of Wigan, whereof the said fulling mills were then, and yet are, parcel, yielding and paying to the said Sir John Maunsell and his successors certain yearly rents, which said grant the said patron and ordinary did (as this defendant thinketh and hopeth to manifest by several deeds under their seals) confirm to the said then burgesses and their heirs and assigns for ever, as by those deeds may appear, by which grant the said burgesses entered into the said Town, and, so being seized, they, the said burgesses, did use, occupy, and enjoy the said mills. And notwithstanding it was ordered and decreed as aforesaid, he the said Edward Fleetwood continually after, during all his life, did permit and suffer this defendant to have, use, and occupy such part of the said fulling mills as at the time of exhibiting of the said bill of complaint he (this defendant) did occupy, so he (this defendant) doth think that the said Fleetwood did know that he had not right thereto. He (this defendant) is a burgess of the said town, and heir of some of the ancient burgesses of the said borough, and hath by descent from his ancestors the inheritance of divers burgages in the said borough; and his ancestors have enjoyed the same part of the said mills as parcel of their own inheritance, paying the accustomed rent for the same."

In the joint and several answers of Hugh Langshaw, Rauffe Astley, the elder, Rauffe Astley, the younger, and Edmund