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West Harptee

Bowen Chewton Hundred 001There are two Harptrees, East and West.  West Harptee was part of the Chewton Hundred despite being further away. The extract from the Bowen map helps to explain why East Harptree and Litton were part of the Wells Forum hundred. The main reasons are a combination of farming and mining .
The Middlesex tithing of Chewton Mendip extended up to and past Priddy to accommodate the lead mines which were shared between the Bishop of Bath and Wells, Abbott of Glastonbury and the lords of the manors of Chewton Mendip and the Harptrees.
 Much of the Middlesex tithing was ‘wasteland’ which was only used for sheep grazing. The West End tithing may have been cultivated but Widcombe was subject to ‘Forrest laws’ for the early part of the medieval era so occupation was severely restricted until permission was granted to create a permanent settlement there.
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