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The Domesday Book

Domesday10
The villages of Romsley and Hunnington are tied together by a millennium of common history. For hundreds of years, the two southern-most hamlets of the Black Country town of Halesowen have been ruled by the same lords of the manor, preached at by the same churchmen, and taught by the same schoolmasters.

Their farmers have toiled in their common fields and carved their pastures out of Uffmoor and Ell Wood. Their labourers have taken fuel from the woods and wrought nails in their cottage workshops. Together they have tramped the ancient road to Halesowen and haggled with the merchants there. Even the misguided reformers who submerged the old Borough of Halesowen under a greater Dudley at least kept Romsley and Hunnington together under Bromsgrove District Council.
To be fair to the bureaucrats, there was an early precedent for moving boundaries. William the Conqueror gave Halesowen and most of its hamlets to Roger of Montgomery, Earl of Shrewsbury. He administered it as part of Shropshire, where it remained for the next 500 years. Domesday Book records that the Earl of Shrewsbury had a valuable estate at Halesowen, with four ploughs at work on his home farm and 36 tenant farmers cultivating the remaining land with 41 ploughs between them. He also had a separate estate in Halesowen, leased to Roger the Huntsman, who had one plough on his own farm and six sub-tenants employing five more ploughs. The huntsman would have occupied a hunting lodge, always kept in readiness should his overlord wish to enjoy the chase. This un-named estate may well be Romsley, where hundreds of acres of woodland have been preserved to this day.

 

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Some contents of this website are taken from the book Romsley and Hunnington, a Millennium History,
written by Joe Hunt and Julian Hunt and published by the Parish Councils of Romsley and Hunnington, in association with the RHHS.

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