Handsacre, or Hansacre

HANDSACRE, or Hansacre, a hamlet, in the parish of Armitage, union of Lichfield, S. division of the hundred of Offlow and of the county of Stafford, 3½ miles (E. S. E.) from Rugeley; containing 967 inhabitants. Hubert de Handsacre was lord of the manor in the reign of Henry I., and it continued with his descendants till 1452, when it passed by marriage to other families. In the civil contentions which led to the deposition of Richard II., Sir William Handsacre espoused the cause of that unfortunate monarch, and Sir Robert Mavesyn, lord of the neighbouring manor of Mavesyn-Ridware, that of the usurper, afterwards Henry IV. Each assembled his vassals, and marched to join the armies then lying in view of each other near Shrewsbury; but meeting in their route, a skirmish ensued in which Sir William was slain. Sir Robert proceeded to the army of Henry, and met a similar fate fighting against the gallant Percy. After the death of these chiefs, Margaret, daughter and coheiress of Sir Robert Mavesyn, gave her hand and fortune to Sir William, son of the knight slain by her father. The hamlet comprises about two-thirds of the parish; and has several malt-kilns, and brick and tile yards. The Uttoxeter road here crosses the Trent by a beautiful iron bridge, 140 feet in span; it was commenced in 1829, and opened in 1832. The old stone bridge is still standing, a few hundred yards below it, and has seven arches, but is very narrow and inconvenient.—See Armitage.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, 7th edition, published in 1848.

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