BERNE, Walter atte (d.1425), of Bletchingley, Surr.
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Family and Education
Rent collector, Bletchingley manor Sept. 1397-8.1
Atte Berne must already have been a man of substance by 1397 when he first appears as rent collector of the manor of Bletchingley for the feoffees of Hugh, 2nd earl of Stafford, during the minority of Edmund, the 5th earl. This was a responsible post involving revenues worth more than £35 a year, and, unlike his successors, atte Berne was able to close his account without arrears of any kind. As might be expected, he was among the jurors at the inquisition post mortem held at Bletchingley in February 1399 regarding the estates of William, 4th earl of Stafford, who had died four years before. Despite his apparent efficiency in raising the money due to his employers, he was less punctilious in settling his personal debts, and on his death in 1425 he owed Humphrey, 6th earl of Stafford, £44 11s. for the farm of demesne lands at Bletchingley manor, which he had leased as a tenant for the previous eight years if not longer. Atte Berne owned other property in both the manor and borough of Bletchingley, although some of it was sold during his lifetime.2
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Variant: Atte Burn.