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Appleby History > In Focus > 12 - The Moores of Appleby Parva 1

Chapter 12

The Moores of Appleby Parva

Part 1- The Early Years

by Richard Dunmore

The Moore family lived at Appleby Parva for about 320 years, first at the old manor house and later at Appleby Hall, built in the 18th century and enlarged in the 19th.  Although Sir John Moore who built Appleby School is the most famous member of the family, there is much of interest to be found in the lives of the others.  I shall begin by trying to trace the Moores’ origins and then follow the main strands of their lineage.

The Moores’ Origins

Nichols (1811) has notes about Sir John Moore’s family background under his accounts of both Appleby Parva (1) and Norton juxta Twycross (2). 

Concerning Sir John’s birth, Nichols tell us that he was the second son of Charles Moore, of Norton near Twycross, in this county (1) and son of a husbandman at Norton (2).

Concerning his ancestry, we learn that among the ancestors of the Moores may be honourably mentioned sir William de la More (from whom likewise are descended the Mores of More hall and Bank hall in Lancashire) (1); also, quoting Gwillim’s Heraldry, we are told that he was lineally descended from the family of More, baronets, of More-hall and Bank-hall in Lancashire, an antient family whose ancestors have there continued for above 20 generations (2).

The actual lineage tracing Charles Moore back to Sir William de la More is not known.  Had Gwillim (c.1660) given details, Nichols might be expected to have reproduced them, but he did not do so.  Nichols seems to be at pains to link Sir John honourably with Sir William, ie to show that he had an honourable pedigree, but glosses over the details.

The Moore family coat of armsSir John Moore was knighted, as a matter of course, when he took the office of Lord Mayor of London.  At that point he needed an heraldic shield and adopted the arms of the Lancashire Mo(o)res.   Whether this was justified we cannot say, but by doing so he would be suggesting, in a not-too-subtle way, that the family had. honourable roots.  Because of the lack of detail, there must remain some doubt therefore about the Lancashire connection.  Aubrey Moore, who himself attempted to trace Charles Moore’s ancestry held this view.  In his autobiographical book A Son of Rectory, he cautiously wrote: as far as we know... (3).

First Local Residence

The College of Arms pedigree of Thomas Moore (dated 1770) gives a few clues about where the Moores first lived locally (4).  At the head of the pedigree chart is Charles Moore:

Charles Moore of Stretton in the County of Derby afterwds of Appleby in the County of Leicester where he was buried 20 June 1654.

[Added in different handwriting:] Purchased the manor of Appleby Parva 1630 & the Roe Farm at Norton in 1620

Although it is clear from other evidence (see below) that the date 1630 for the acquisition of the manor is wrong (5), the identification of Roe Farm at Norton shows us where Charles Moore lived before occupying the manor at Appleby Parva.  Roe House Lane is that length of Salt Street which runs along the hill-top from Austrey Lane towards Norton and Roe House (SK 307 076) was just above the site of the present Elms Farm and overlooking the Appleby Parva estate (6).  Roe Farm must have occupied the NW corner of Norton parish.  This information incidentally also gives us the probable location within Norton parish where Sir John Moore was born in 1620, ie Roe Farm (7).

Charles Moore was described in the family pedigree as being of Stretton in the County of Derby afterwards of Appleby... (4); in Nichols’ pedigree as Charles Moore of Stretton ... lord of the manor of Appleby 1599 (9); and again by Nichols as being of Norton near Twycross ... esq. lord of the manor of Appleby Parva (1).  The reference to Charles Moore being a husbandman at Norton (2), suggests that his tenure of Roe Farm may have been leasehold and that his possession of the farm was only a temporary one before taking over Appleby Parva manor.  Stretton presumably means Stretton-en-le-Field (10).

The Move to Appleby Parva

The date and place of the birth of Charles, the eldest son, is not known, but (Sir) John, was born in 1620 at Norton.  Another brother Robert, who did not survive to adulthood, was baptised at Norton on 9 February 1622 (11).  The younger children were baptised at Appleby Parva from 1626 to 1628 (12).  Their mother Cecily died at Appleby in December 1632 and Robert less than two months later at the age of 11 years.  It is quite clear therefore that the move from Roe Farm at Norton to the manor house at Appleby Parva must have taken place between 1622 and 1626.

But a puzzle still remains. It seems unlikely that Charles Moore, the purchaser of 1599, is the same Charles who was a husbandman at Norton, the husband of Cecily (née Yates) and the father of her children in the 1620s.  Charles Moore, the purchaser of 1599, was presumably at least 21 years of age, so he was born no later than 1578.  Yet (Sir) John Moore and his siblings were born from just before 1620. Could Charles have married Cecily rather later than was usual for a man in his position?  Was there an earlier wife perhaps, who died in childbirth?  Or was the purchaser Charles father of the husbandman Charles?

This latter scenario makes more sense: Charles senior, of Stretton, purchased Appleby Parva manor in 1599.  Charles junior would have been born at Stretton.  When he grew up, he took the lease of Roe Farm on the hill at Norton juxta Twycross and lived there from the time of his marriage to Cecily.  Their first children were born there.  Later, perhaps about 1625, he inherited Appleby Parva manor from his father and he and his family moved in.  The younger children were born there.

Genealogical Lines

Charles Moore, who moved into Appleby Parva manor about 1625, had three sons who grew to adulthood: Charles, (Sir) John and George.  Sir John Moore had no children, so Moores claiming lineage from Charles Moore are descended through either Sir John’s elder brother Charles or his younger brother George.  This is apparent from the simplified lineage of the early Moores which follows.

Lords of the Manor shown in CAPITALS with DATE of inheritance

Lineage 1
Click image for larger view

Lords and Farmers

 When Charles Moore died in 1654 he was succeeded as lord of the manor by his eldest son also Charles Moore. This Charles, Sir John’s elder brother, was lord of the manor during the building of the School.  Their younger brother George, from whom the Moores of Kentwell Hall were to descend, was a farmer also at Appleby Parva (Little Appleby).  Both Charles (d.1700) and George (1628-1684) died before Sir John and were succeeded by their respective sons Thomas (1647-1725), as lord of the manor, and yeoman George (1656-1718) (13).

 These two cousins, nephews of Sir John, supervised the building of Appleby School during the 1690s.  Sir John probably over-estimated their capabilities and enthusiasm.  Surviving correspondence shows the exasperation of Sir John at their mistakes and quarrelling (14).  They ably managed their own farms no doubt, but found irksome the imposed duty of supervising for their critical uncle such a time-consuming building project.

 Senior of these Appleby nephews, Thomas Moore (1647-1725) had three sons: George (1688-1751), John (1693-1756) and Thomas (1698-1762) - see the simplified lineage.  George inherited the manor but, after he died unmarried, descendants of the other two came to hold the manor in their turn. For three turns inheritance by the direct line failed.  This failure and its consequences will be discussed in my next article.

 Sir John’s younger Appleby nephew, George Moore (1656-1718), although married twice, had no surviving children and it was his younger brother John Moore (1658-1714) who was the main beneficiary of Sir John Moore’s fortune.  The childless Sir John (1620-1702) employed John as his London agent during the latter stages of the building of Appleby School.  John Moore subsequently bought Kentwell Hall at Long Melford in Suffolk. He also died childless and willed the Kentwell estate to his sister Sarah’s son John Mould, on condition that Mould changed his name to Moore, which he duly did.  I shall write about the Kentwell Moores line and the sad end of Sir John Moore’s fortune later.


 In each generation after Sir John Moore, younger sons of the family went off to the City of London to gain employment as merchants.  Little is known of their trading activities in the City but they each became members of one of the Livery Companies.  These were, and are, professional bodies regulating their members’ trading activities and ceremonials.  (In many cases the name is traditional rather than an accurate description of the members’ trade.)  John Moore (1658-1714), son of Sir John’s younger brother George and who inherited Sir John’s fortune, was variously a ‘cheesemonger’ and a ‘clothworker’.  His younger brother Robert was a ‘soapmaker’.  The younger brothers of squire Thomas Moore (1647-1725), John (b.1649) and George (1655-1732) (not shown on the simplified lineage) were also merchants, John being a ‘fishmonger’ (15).  Others in later generations followed suit, which meant that although the extended family continued to expand there was a network of Moore cousins in the City who were able to keep in touch with each other, as well as with their families at home, whether at Appleby Parva, Kentwell Hall or elsewhere.

The Old Manor at Appleby Parva

 Nothing survives of the old manor house which was demolished in 1770 and replaced by Appleby Hall (16).  One all-too-brief description of part of the manor house is given in a codicil to the will of George Moore who died in 1751 (17).  Because he was unmarried, his will has many details about his extended family and of the properties in his possession.  In particular, he made provision for three of his nieces (provided they did not marry!):

And I do also Give unto my Said three Neices Ann Gresley  Rebecca ffarmer and Mary ffarmer   ...   the use and benefit of living and staying in the East End and ffront of my Messuage or Dwelling House in Little Appleby aforesaid wherein I usually reside and dwell and also of two Cellars on the Right hand in the Said House To wit the Wine Cellar and the Passage Cellar and of the best Garden and Cistren for Water and Pump belonging to my Said House with liberty of Brewing in the Brewhouse there as often as they Shall have Occasion and  also the use of all the ffurniture and Household Goods in the Said House and of my Plate and of the Stable and Chamber under the Dovehouse that I make use of in my Brother Thomas Moores Common Yard  they my Said three last named Neices paying the Window Tax of the Said Part of the said House and kee[p]ing and maintaining the same from time to time in good and sufficient Repair and keeping the said Garden in good Order and condition as often as Occasion Shall require ....

Reference to the ‘East End’ and ‘front’ of the house shows that it was of no mean size.  The description of some of the domestic facilities evokes a picture of a large busy household typical of an age when self-sufficiency was the norm.  However, by the late 18th century, ownership passed to those who had experience of a larger world where the old order was changing and grand houses built.  This happened at Appleby too and I shall write about that period in the next article.

Notes and References

 1.Nichols, Vol. IV, pt 2, (Appleby Parva) p 440: ‘Among the ancestors of the Moores may be honourably mentioned sir William de la More (from whom likewise are descended the Mores of More hall and Bank hall in Lancashire), who was advanced to the rank of knight banneret by Edward the Black Prince for his eminent services done at the battle of Poitiers in France.  Sir John Moore, knt. (who was the second son of Charles Moore, of Norton near Twycross, in this county, esq. lord of the manor of Appleby Parva) was a merchant in London, and some time in the East India trade, by which he raised an ample fortune...  He was elected ... lord mayor in 1681 ...  For his services during his mayoralty, Charles II granted to him [an] augmentation to his arms ...’

 2. Nichols, op cit, (Norton) p 851*  ‘The Moores of Appleby, and the Abneys of Willesley, Derbyshire, have considerable estates here.  Sir John Moore2, lord mayor of London in 1681, was son of a husbandman at Norton.  Footnote 2: ....In Gwillim’s Heraldry p.194, sect.iii. c.16 sir John More, knt. is described as “lineally descended from the family of More, baronets, of More-hall and Bank-hall in Lancashire, an antient family whose ancestors have there continued for above 20 generations, as appears as well by divers antient deeds now in the custody of Sir Edward More baronet, as by the atchievements and inscriptions engraven on the walls of the said houses.”  MS in the Ashmolean Museum, No. 834.’

 3. Aubrey Moore, A Son of the Rectory, Sutton, 1982, p.11. Moore is a quite common name and therefore difficult to trace, but some clues may be found if we could establish where Cicely Yates came from.  During the latter half of the 16th century the name Cicely Yates does occur in Lancashire, but not in connection with anyone called Charles Moore.  I examined the FamilySearch web-site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  ‘Cicely Yates’ was found at Chorley, Lancashire. (1546, 51, 61, 67) Berkshire (1576, 77), London (1587),  Lincoln (1591, 1604) and Manchester (1592).  These of course represent only those events of which the LDS is aware. So the Moores’ Lancashire origin is quite possible but not yet proven.

4. The Pedigree of Thomas Moore (of Aldgate, East London, b. 1735), College of Arms, London, 1770: ‘Charles Moore of Stretton in the County of Derby afterwds of Appleby in the County of Leicester where he was buried 20 June 1654.’  [Added in a different hand:] ‘Purchased the manor of Appleby Parva 1630 & the Roe Farm at Norton in 1620.’  I am grateful to Mr Peter Moore for providing a copy of the family pedigree.

 5. Nichols, op cit, Vol. IV, pt 2, p 440; 1630  refers to freeholders: ‘The freeholders at Little Appleby in 1630 were Charles Moore, Thomas Wright and William Stanton.’

 6. First Edition 1inch OS map, Sheet 43 Leicester, David & Charles reprint 1970 (Roe House)

 7. R Dunmore,  This Noble Foundation, 1992, pp 10-11, Letter from Sir John Moore to his nephew Thomas Moore at Appleby 15 June 1695: ‘there [Norton] I drew my first breath’

 8.  Nichols, op cit, p 439.‘And in the 41st year of queen Elizabeth [1599/1600], sir Edward Griffin, knight, conveyed the said manor and premises to Charles Moore, who was lineally descended from the Moores of Moor and Bank Hall, Lancashire’ Footnote: ‘see Gwillim’s Heraldry, p. 194.’ 

 9. Nichols, op cit, Vol.IV, pt 2, p 443, Pedigree of Moore of Appleby Parva, Leicestershire: ‘Charles Moore of Stretton, co. Derby; lord of the manor of Appleby in 1599; buried June 20 1654 = Cecily, daughter of  ..... Yates; buried at Appleby Dec. 25, 1632.’

 10. Nichols, op cit, Vol. III, pt 2, p1024, (Stretton-en-le-Field, like Appleby, was split between Derbyshire and Leicestershire)

 11. Norton juxta Twycross baptism register (from FamilySearch IGI): Robert son of Charles and Cicely Moore 9 Feb 1622.  Appleby Magna burial register: Robert son of Charles & Cicilie More 11 Feb 1632

 12. The Pedigree of Thomas Moore, op cit, the younger (Appleby) children were: Sarah (1st dau. bap.1626 Appleby), Joan (2nd dau. b. unknown but married 1639), George (3rd son bur. 1628 Appleby), George (4th son, 1628-1684, bap. Appleby)

 13.  Appleby Parish Registers for the years 1698-1706 list the occupations of the family ‘breadwinner’ when register entries were taxed to pay for the war against France.  Most of the ordinary parishioners were exempt (and their occupations given to justify this) but George Moore being ‘yeoman worth £50 in Land nor [ie and not] £600 in personal estate’ paid the ‘King's duty’ at the burial of his infant daughter Mary on 4 June 1699.

 14. R Dunmore, op cit, chapter 3 (building Appleby School)

 15.  Nichols, op cit p 443 Pedigree of Moore

 16. Nichols, op cit, p 431: ‘Dormer’s Hall, and the manor house of Little Appleby, were pulled down about 1770.’

 17. Will of George Moore, 3 Aug 1751, PRO: Ref. PROB II 604.

©Richard Dunmore, March 2002

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