Held AtGloucestershire Archives
Alt Ref NoD1799
TitleBlathwayt family of Dyrham
DescriptionManorial records of Dyrham and Hinton 1571-1864, and of Porlock (Somerset) 1650-1851; deeds and leases of Dyrham 1570-1886 and of Lansdown, Weston and Langridge (all Somerset) 1568-1910; estate plans of Dyrham & Hinton c.1715-c.1850; Langridge c.1750-c.1930; estate surveys c.1680-1892; rentals c.1735-1935; estate papers c.1600-1919; correspondence, bills and plans regarding building of Dyrham House 1692-1706; household inventories, accounts and vouchers 1601-1918; family papers and correspondence 1613-1934 including diaries of G W Blathwayt 1824-1871 and others and correspondence of G W W Blathwayt 1866-1915; estate accounts and vouchers 1649-1949; *correspondence and political papers of William Blathwayt, including papers as Secretary at War, Commissioner of Trade etc 1662-1716; parish records of Porlock (Somerset) 1767-1874
Bristol, St Philip and St Jacob: terrier 1714; perambulation of parish boundary c.1800; tithe accounts 1780-1808; copy tithe award 1846-1847
Dyrham: incumbents' fees accounts 1803-1805; sacrament money accounts 1803-1821; churchwardens rate 1806; overseers' papers 1817-1840; parish census returns 1821
NotesAccessions 2417 and 3328 are uncatalogued
Dyrham and Hinton
Barton Hundred
Grumbalds Ash Hundred
St. James, Bristol
Somerset: Langridge, Weston, Charlcombe
Somerset: Porlock
Somerset: Witcomb and Cote
Surrey: Egham

Dyrham and Hinton
Hawkesbury and Thornbury
Staunton (Forest of Dean)
West Littleton in Tormarton
Wick and Henbury
Bristol and Barton Regis
Hertfordshire and Essex
Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire
Shropshire and Montgomery
Somerset: Bath
Somerset: Burnham
Somerset: Charlcombe, Lansdown, Weston and Langridge
Somerset: Selworthy and Luccombe
Somerset: Nynehead
Somerset: Porlock
Somerset: Weeke
Cold Ashton
Dyrham and Hinton

Surveys: Dyrham and Hinton
Surveys: East Somerset
Surveys: Cold Ashton (near Marshfield)
Surveys: Bristol
Surveys: Porlock
Surveys: Hertfordshire
Leases: Dyrham, Hinton and West Littleton
Leases: Wick
Leases: Bristol and Barton Regis
Leases: East Somerset
Leases: Somerset: Porlock
Leases: Berkshire
Leases: Middlesex
Leases: Wiltshire
Leases: Ireland
Leases: Miscellaneous
Agreements, including enclosure at Dyrham and West Littleton
Porlock estate papers
Tax assessments, rates, etc.
Appointments of estate officials
Schedules of deeds
Abstracts of title
Draft and copy deeds
Sale catalogues
Building of Dyrham Park: estimates and correspondence.
Household administration
Household: miscellaneous

Wynter family
Blathwayt family (in alphabetical order of Christian names)
Related families
Other families
Diaries: Blathwayt family
Diaries: Gabriel Lepipre
Diaries: Hibbert family
Diaries: E.L. Philips

Estate income
Estate accounts
Estate vouchers
Household accounts
Household vouchers
Household vouchers of Crane and Pye families

Brayne family
Wynter family
Blathwayt family
Miscellaneous lawsuits
Solicitors' accounts

Secretary William Blathwayt, c.1649-1717
William Blathwayt, 1688-1742
William (Crane) Blathwayt, 1794-1839

Parish and Charity
St. Philip and Jacob, Bristol

Personal correspondence: Wynter family
Personal correspondence: Blathwayt and related families, chiefly Baker, Oates, and Philips (in chronological order)
Estate correspondence: Wynter family
Estate correspondence: Blathwayt family
Estate correspondence: other families

Local historical articles, notes, and prints
Family poems, sketches, Christmas cards
Estate, hunting and other printed notices, rules, etc.
Admin HistoryThe manor of Dyrham was bought from the Dennys family by George Wynter, brother of Admiral Sir William Wynter of Lydney, in 1571. Apart from deeds and settlements (D1799/T2-4) there are few records in the archives relating to the Dyrham estate during its ownership by the Wynter family. A few deeds are signed by Sir William Wynter (see D.N.B.) including the acquittal of Captain John Wynter, 1582, for acts of piracy committed during Sir Francis Drake's circumnavigation of the world (D1799/T3). Some account of this expedition is given in F. H. Harris, Wyntours of the White Cross - House (1923). In 1680-2 John Wynter was involved in lawsuits said to have cost him £10,000 (D1799/L9-13) which evidently severely reduced his fortune; the Elizabethan mansion house became dilapidated (D1799/C8).
In 1686 William Blathwayt married Mary, only daughter and heir of John Wynter (D1799/C8, D1799/T4, D1799/F89). He was at that time Secretary-at-War, Secretary to the Lords of Trade, and Auditor-General of Plantation Revenues; later (1692-1701) he became Secretary of State to William III in Flanders. His official career is dealt with in detail in G. A. Jacobson, William Blathwayt; a late seventeenth century administrator (Yale U.P., 1932), and by R.A. Preston, 'The life and career of William Blathwayt, civil servant and Acting-Secretary', unpublished M.A. thesis, Leeds University (c.1948).
Soon after the death of his wife in 1691, Blathwayt rebuilt the house at Dyrham. The building of the present mansion of Dyrham Park has been described in articles by J.A. Kenworthy-Brown, 'The building of Dyrham Park, Gloucestershire, for William Blathwayt between 1692 and 1702', The Connoisseur, March 1962, and M. Girouard, 'Dyrham Park, Gloucestershire', Country Life, 19 and 22 February, 1962. The gardens are described in Stephen Switzer, Icongraphica Rustica, III (1718), 113-127. There is Talman's 'First Draught of a Cascade' in the R.I.B.A. Drawings Collection. Numerous estimates, drawings, accounts, and letters survive relating to the building under the supervision of Samuel Hauduroy and William Talman (D1799/E234-245, D1799/A24-25, 101-113). Later repairs to the house, purchases of furniture, and household management are recorded chiefly in the long and detailed series of estate and household vouchers (D1799/A97-270, D1799/319-426).
The estate which William Blathwayt acquired through his marriage with Mary Wynter consisted chiefly of the manor of Dyrham and lands in Dyrham, Hinton, and West Littleton. Apart from minor changes due to the enlargement of the Park, 1691-1706 (D1799/T9) and inclosure, 1799-1818 (D1799/E152, 153) this estate remained intact. William Blathwayt's own real property was limited to some houses in Clerkenwell (Co. Middlesex) which had belonged to his father. He later bought the manors of Weston (1691), Charlcombe (1692), Lansdown (1701) and Langridge (1705) all north of Bath, which were administered with the Dyrham Park estate (D1799/T70, 58, 67, 93). The manor and estate at Porlock was administered separately. This was one of the estates devised under the will of Henry Rogers of Cannington (W. Somerset) in 1672. One of his trustees was his nephew John Wynter of Dyrham and after lengthy Chancery proceedings (D1799/L9-13), William Blathwayt obtained possession of the manor of Porlock about 1705.
The large quantities of rentals, leases, vouchers, and other records show fully how the estates were organized. Detailed pedigrees are among the archives (D1799/F1, 2). Although no member of the family achieved the distinction of Secretary William Blathwayt there are quantities of family papers, correspondence, and diaries, especially during the 19th century.
The archives themselves have had a varied fortune. The muniment room of the mansion is portrayed by an anonymous writer, possibly G. W. Blathwayt, 'In a Gloucestershire Justice-Room', Blackwoods Magazine (1907), 171-181. More recently the contents of this collection, chiefly of family and estate archives have been briefly described in B. S. Smith, 'Blathwayt of Dyrham Park archives', Archives, V (1962), 224-5, (G.R.O., PA126/7).
Custodial HistorySome unusual features may be remarked on. No medieval records have apparently survived, and none was listed in a catalogue made in 1772. There are notable gaps in some series of records in the first half of the 18th century after the death of Secretary Blathwayt in 1717, particularly the estate and household vouchers. The vouchers just mentioned were systematically filed instead of accounts being entered in ledgers.
Very few original bundles survive. The deeds and leases at least were sorted and listed by the steward of the estate in 1772 as they were then `in the utmost confusion'. About half the collection was deposited c.1940 in Bristol University Library where further sorting and listing took place, in some cases breaking an existing arrangement.
There is a small number of records relating chiefly to the Porlock estate which have been deposited by a firm of London solicitors per the British Records Association in the Somerset Heritage Centre, Brunel Way, Norton Fitzwarren, Taunton, TA2 6SF, somersetarchives@swheritage.org.uk (Cat. Mark. DD/BR/bn). A few records found later in the house, or purchased, have been acquired by the National Trust. For those deposited in Gloucestershire Archives., see D2659, and for those kept at the house see the National Register of Archives list.
The papers of William Blathwayt (1649-1717) were dispersed at the beginning of this century, and some are held in the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation Library in Bethesda, Maryland. Copies of these have now been acquired by this office on ten microfilms (Microfilm 1298-1307). On the Search Room shelves (ROL G3) is a volume entitled The William Blathwayt Papers at Colonial Williamsburg 1631-1722. A summary reel guide appears on pp. 9-10 of this volume with references which relate to the main text. The reel guide identifies which set of documents appear on which film.
Current depositor (as of 2017) is Mr Mark Blathwayt
TermFamily archives
Estates (land)
Related Material[See also D2659; D2663; D11475; D11485]
Access ConditionsThese records are open for research
* denotes that this collection contains some uncatalogued records - please give us at least one week's notice of your visit if you would like to look at this material
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