George Clerke, Yeoman, bought Cromer Hall in 1540 from Anthony Catesby (of Whiston, Northamptonshire). Cromer Hall is today an English Heritage Building ( http://www.britishlistedbuildings.co.uk/en-159518-cromer-hall-ardeley-hertfordshire#.WAqWztArKVM ).
A History of the County of Hertford (Volume 3) further states: "In 1550 the homage presented George Clerke for cutting down trees in the highway at Cromer. (fn. 66) He transferred the manor in 1557 to his son Thomas Clerke of Stevenage, (fn. 67) whose title was disputed by John Austen, citizen and haberdasher of London, who called himself great-grandson of William Austen and his wife Katherine, who was daughter of Sir John Clerke, kt. (fn. 68) Thomas Clerke retained the manor until his death about 1597, when his next heir was his son William. (fn. 69) Thomas and William Clerke and Beatrice Clerke, widow, dismembered the manor, (fn. 70)."
The Historical Antiquities of Hertfordshire (by Sir Henry Chauncy) volume 2 (page 128) states that George made his will on "8th of October 3 & 4 P. & M.", which would be 08 October 1556. When that will was probated has not yet been determined. The will of George's eldest son William indicates that George Clerke was buried at Benington, Hertfordshire. Further to his own will there is a mention of a charity, in the parish of Benington "The eleemosynary charities are regulated by scheme of the Charity Commissioners 8 May 1891. They comprise the charities of:— 1. George Clerke, will dated in 1556, being a rent-charge of £2 10s. issuing out of Boxbury Tithe, Walkern, now vested in Mrs. Brand."
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