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In 1271 Jan 17, Stephanus de Penecestr (Stephen Pencester; Penchester; Penshurst) was granted, by Henry III, (In year 55 of his reign) a Royal licence to crenellate Hevre (Hever Castle)
Licence for Stephen de Penecestre to strengthen his house of Hevre, co. Kent, with a wall of stone and lime and to crenellate it in the manner of a castle. (CPR)

Stephanus de Penecestr ... domum suam ... Hevre, Kanc. (Turner and Parker)

Granted at Westminster.


Licenses to crenellate dated 1271, 1340 and 1384.

Original source is;

(In fact, the original source given is usually a transcription/translation of what are precious medieval documents not readily availably. It should be noted that these transcription/translations often date to the nineteenth or early twentieth centuries and that unwitting bias of transcribers may affect the translation. Care should also be taken to avoid giving modern meaning to the medieval use of certain stock words and terms. Licentia is best translated as 'freedom to' not 'permission'.)

Significant later sources are;

Pencester , Sir Stephen of (d. 1298)’
Pencester (Penchester, Penshurst), Sir Stephen of (d. 1298), administrator, is of obscure origins—surprisingly so, in the light of his prominence later. Pencester first appears in royal records in June 1263, when, probably already a knight, he was made captain to repress disorder in Sussex and Kent. He must already have acquired administrative experience, perhaps in the service of the Clare lords of Tonbridge, 5 miles from Penshurst. If so, he changed his allegiance, once civil war began to divide local society, to the Lord Edward, who was henceforth his patron. He was certainly unsuccessful as captain: his powers were given to Roger of Leybourne in December 1263. Once royal authority was restored in 1265, however, Pencester's career revived. Keeper of Hastings, Winchelsea, and Rye from November 1265, he became constable of Dover Castle, initially as Edward's deputy, in December 1267, and sheriff of Kent from 1268 to 1271. In August 1271 he was first referred to as warden of the Cinque Ports; Leybourne's death in that year probably offers a partial explanation for his rise to local prominence. Thereafter Pencester served as both warden and constable until his own death. (Eales)

Biographical source include;

More information about licences to crenellate can be found here.

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Record created by Philip Davis. This record last updated on Sunday, October 4, 2015.