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Werlawescroft and Werlascroft Surname| Williscroft, Woolliscroft, Wolliscroft and variants Onename Study

Werlawescroft & Werlascroft Surname

The first mention I have found of the surname Werlascroft was in 1287 when a Clement de Werlascroft (Warlawescroft) was mentioned in the Pleas of the Forest of Cannock and Kenfare in Staffordshire. In January 1301 (1302) Clement de Warlesawescroft appeared at the Assizes held at Stafford with Stephen Hawarden and John de Caldewelle accused of unjustly disseised Henry son of Hugh de Teddesleye of land and tenements at Bloxwich in Staffordshire. On the 26 November 1302 Clement again appeared at the assize before William Inge and Ralph de Bellafago held at Tamworth but the case was adjourned as the recognitors did not appear. 

An Adam de Werlascroft was 'a free and lawful man' when he was appointed one of  the twenty four Jurors to hear the case of Robert de Bures and land in Cannock Forest at an Inquisition held in 1311. In 1315 on the Feast of St. Wistan (1 June) Elizabeth att Mote granted to Adam de Werlescroft and Joan her daughter his wife all her messuage called le Mote in Byssbury, Staffordshire. 

'Werlascroft' is not mentioned on 19C maps of the Bushbury area. However, I have recently found a reference to Werlescroft on the Black Country History web pages.  The page states that Westcroft Farm, Bushbury was originally called 'Werlescroft'. It was one of the three farms in the possession of the Underhill family. The connection with the Underhill family is confirmed in a charter dated the Sunday next after the feast of St. James (30 July) in 1374 William de Worlascroft, vicar of Bisshebury (Bushbury) and William de Wybaston, chaplain, grant (land) to Thomas Underhill and Elene his wife. William Werlascroft was the vicar at Bushbury in 1369, 1374 and 1397. Previously he had been clerk and is mentioned in a document for 1346 in connection with a feoffment.   

It is also possible that the William Werlawescroft mentioned in the Shropshire Fleet Fines dated 27 October (one month from St Michael) 1393 is the same William. William and others were querents in a case brought against John Smythyman and Islot, his wife, (deforciants) for land including the manor of Brydewyk (Baswich, Staffordshire). The deforciants gave John and Islot a 100 marks of silver after they remitted all rights to the land.

In my opinion, from the evidence available, the surname Werlescroft was derived from the place of the same name located near Bushbury in Staffordshire. The surname appears to have 'disappeared' in its original form over the process of time.

werlawescroft sources

References to the surname Werlawscroft and Werlascroft 1200-1400

Williscroft * Wool(l)iscroft * Wolliscroft  Worldwide Onename Study


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