Yalding 1336 (Y8) Role

Hugh de Audley, Yalding's lord of the manor, is one of the largest landowners in England. Hugh de Audley visits Yalding as often as he can, but while he is away, the village is managed by his estate bailiff, John Giffard.

Hugh de Audley's main home is Tonbridge Castle. He also owns Court Lodge, the largest house in Yalding. John Giffard lives in Court Lodge and Hugh de Audley stays there when he visits Yalding.

The vicar in Yalding is Gilbert Hughes. He has only lived in Yalding for a year. Gilbert Hughes, like all the vicars of Yalding since 1186, was previously a monk at the Priory of St Mary Magdalene. This priory was built by Richard de Clare at Tonbridge in about 1135.

Although the land at Yalding is usually fertile, the people in the village have suffered considerable hardships in recent years. Yalding is low lying and the land closest to the river becomes flooded after heavy rainfall.

On 16th July, 1330 it began raining at Yalding. It rained for the next two weeks and by August, part of the village was under water. The rain destroyed a large proportion of the crops and during the winter many people in Yalding died of starvation.

In 1333 a drought resulted in another bad harvest. The situation was made worse by a disease that killed a lot of the sheep owned by the villagers. Two more bad harvests followed. In 1334, as a result of a very cold spring, and in 1335, when heavy summer rain ruined crops.

1. Copy the table below. Read the last two paragraphs and then fill in the rest of the columns.

2. Look at the Burial Records. Write down in section 11 of your Family Information Chart details of any members of your family who died between 1330 and 1335.

3. (a) Draw a bar-chart showing the death-rate in Yalding between 1329 and 1336. (b) Explain why so many people died in Yalding in 1330, 1331, and 1334.

YearReason for bad harvest in Yalding
1334a very cold spring