Offham, Kent
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Offham, Kent, England

Offham, Pepingstraw and Snodbeane Manors

Sir Richard Culpeper9a of Oxen Hoath had no sons, and at his death in 1484, Offham Manor and its appended manors of Pepingstraw and Snodbeane  passed to his three daughters: (1) Margaret Culpeper, wife of William Cotton of Oxen Hoath; (2) Joyce Culpeper, wife of Edmund Lord Howard ( one of their daughters was Catherine Howard, fifth wife of Henry VIII); and (3) Elizabeth Culpeper, wife of Henry Barham, Esq. They, in the reign of King Henry VII, joined in the sale of these manors to Thomas Leigh of Sibton in Liminge. (Hasted's Kent, Vol. IV, p. 539).

There are lingering name traces of these old manors, but apparently no manor houses are still standing. There is an Offham Manor Farm on Teston Road, just east of Offham, and a short street named Pepingstraw in Offham.

Offham Church, March 2000St. Michael's Church

Ancient Parish
Original registers
from 1539.

Prior to the date of the earliest extant parish registers, the Culpepers had sold their interests in the manors at Offham. Further research is needed to determine if there are any monumental inscriptions for the family.

Location: On Teston Road In Offham
National Grid Coordinates: TQ 655 574

Photograph taken by Warren Culpepper, March 2000.

Offham, Kent

Offham, a lovely small village set in the orchards of the North Downs, was first settled by the Romans. It's main conversation piece today, however, is of slightly more recent vintage. In the middle of the attractive village is a quintain, or tilting post. This aid for jousting practice consists of an upright arm that swivels when hit - particularly by a lance. The quintain comes into play each year during Offham's May Day celebrations. (Source: Sean Connolly, Hidden Places of Kent, 1998, page 95.)

1831 Topographical Dictionary:
OFFHAM, a parish in the hundred of LARKFIELD, lathe of AYLESFORD, county of KENT, 3 miles (E.S.E.) from Wrotham, containing 274 inhabitants. The church, dedicated to St. Michael, is principally in the early style of English architecture, with a tower steeple. The great Roman military way, from the Weald to London, crosses this parish. Jack Straw, the rebel in the reign of Richard II., is said to have been born at Pepingstraw in this parish. Offham-green is remarkable for having on it the ancient instrument of amusement called a quintin, which the lord of the manor is obliged to preserve.

Offham Village Location: 13 miles N of Goudhurst, 5 miles W of Maidstone
National Grid Coordinates: TQ 657 573

Last Revised: 02 Jan 2015


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