"By custom of Borough English(qv) which obtains in the Manor of Newark, property descended to the youngest son, or failing such, to the youngest daughter. In Elizabeth's reign, by 1579, Reginald Spaforthe late of Winthorpe, husbandman, deceased, was seized according to, the custom of the Manor of Newark of three messuages and three oxgangs of land, meadow and pasture in Winthorpe, after his death the premises descended to him, as youngest son of the said John Spaforthe, according to the custom of the Borough English, he being then aged seven years. The respondent was one William Spaforthe, who stated the said John Spaforthe, eighteen years ago had committed felo de se, by drowning himself in a well at Winthorpe, as found by a jury at the inquest. Thereupon the Kings almoner had taken possession of the said property and sold them to him. The said John Spaforthe had been shown in the Hallmote Court at Newark, to hold of the Bishop of Lincoln and that on account of the felonious manner of his death the property reverted to the Bishopric and was subsequently granted to the respondent and his mother, the widow of the said John."
The Spaforthes or Spaffords have lived in Winthorpe and neighbouring villages from this early date. Mrs. Kingdom (nee Spafford), of Langford, can trace her ancestors back to this period. Her father and grandfather were blacksmiths at Winthorpe, Holme and Langford. The Winthorpe blacksmiths shop was in Holme Lane and is now Mrs Linki's garage.
From the Manor Court Rolls in Browns History of Newark.
Miss K. E. Euston.
Extract from Focal Point.
Further reading can be found inThe People of Winthorpe in Volume 2.