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In 1531 Jan 22, Sir William Paulet, master of the King's wards was granted, by Henry VIII, (In year 22 of his reign) a Royal licence to crenellate Basyng (Basing House)
Sir William Paulet, master of the King's wards. Licence to build walls and towers within and around and to fortify the manor of Basyng, and to impark 300 acres of land and 20 acres of wood at and about the same manor. York Place, 22 Jan. 22 Hen. VIII. Del. Westm., 30 Jan.–P.S. Pat. p.1, m. 34, which is dated 20 Jan. (LP Hen. VIII)

Granted at York Place. Grant by privy seal.


Confirmation of ownership of the manor and of Paulet's increasing status and royal connections.

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;

Paulet, William, first marquess of Winchester (1474/5?–1572)
Paulet, William, first marquess of Winchester (1474/5?–1572), administrator and nobleman... His main primary residence of Basing House was acquired through the marriage of Paulet's great-grandfather Sir John Paulet (d. 1437) to Constance (d. in or before 1428), daughter and coheir of Sir Hugh Poynings, eldest son and heir of Thomas Poynings, fifth Baron St John of Basing. Though a cousin, John Bonville, sued for title to Basing House, the Paulets appear to have sustained their claim, as in January 1531 Paulet was granted a licence to fortify the manor and create a park, and in 1537 was able to produce legitimate title to the lands... Paulet appears to have made little impression on local and central politics until the accession of Henry VIII. He was named sheriff in Hampshire on 8 November 1511, after being nominated, but not chosen, in each of the previous two years. He was again appointed to the post in 1518 and 1522. He was named to a commission on 2 May 1512 in Southampton to review, muster, and certify numbers of troops going to France, and named JP for Hampshire for the first time in January 1514. He was again on commissions of muster in Wiltshire in March 1539. Lucrative and important offices began to fall his way during the 1520s, but there is no clear evidence for how, or through whom, he came to the notice of the king... Paulet was knighted between 1523 and 1525 and was a member of the council from at least February 1526. (Ford)

Winchester was an accomplished courtier, if not as able an administrator, though his final years as lord chancellor taint the estimation of his earlier fiscal capabilities. His greatest achievements were his rise from obscurity to great status, his magnificent building, Basing House, which was the largest private residence in Britain, and his ability to thrive under successive regime changes; his career served as an inspiration for ambitious men rather than idealistic ones. (Ford)

Confirmation of ownership of the manor and of Paulet's increasing status and royal connections.

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.