|Badcock of Little Missenden|
The elder son, Lovell Badcock (1744-97) inherited their father's property and lived in a house at The Lyde until about 1792, when he bought Little Missenden Abbey. The Lyde is a natural dell near the centre of Bledlow village which is now the site of a garden developed by the owners of Bledlow Manor. Later 19th century maps show a building called Lyde Cottage on the property, and while this was probably a gentry cottage it must have been very small. Lovell's marriage was childless, and his wife died in 1790, so it is a bit of mystery why he decided to buy a much bigger house soon afterwards. It could be related to the fact that for several years Lovell Badcock's name had headed the list of those nominated by the county for the post of High Sheriff, but the King had declined to appoint him. (It was usual for the King to choose the name at the top of the list for each county unless he had severe reservations about the person concerned, and if he did pass over a name, for the county to take the hint and not put the same person forward again, so this was itself an unusual circumstance). It seems possible that the objection to Badcock was that he was not a sufficiently substantial landowner to support the dignity of the shrievalty, and that he bought the Little Missenden Abbey estate to remove that difficulty and secure the honour of the appointment, which he eventually held in 1795. Against this, however, is the fact that Badcock was already not only a JP but also a Deputy Lieutenant for the county and Colonel of the county militia, and it seems improbable that the King would have objected to him as High Sheriff on purely territorial grounds.
When Lovell Badcock died without legitimate issue in 1797, he was succeeded as head of the family by his younger brother, Thomas Stanhope Badcock (1749-1821), who lived in Buckingham and was a leading figure in the county militia and volunteers. Unfortunately, in the absence of a will or other relevant document, it is not entirely clear how Lovell's property devolved. His father had left the Bledlow estate the subject of a strict settlement, under which that property should have passed to Thomas on the death of Lovell without legitimate heirs. But when the Bledlow property is next heard of in 1823, it was in the hands of a John Lovell Badcock, whose parentage is obscure. He may be the man of that name who married Ann Armstrong at Little Missenden in 1795, in which case it is tempting to suggest that he might have been an illegitimate son of Lovell Badcock; but if he was, he should not have inherited the Bledlow estate. He might also be the John Lovell Badcock of Princes Risborough, cabinet maker (conceivably a son of the John Lovell Badcock married in 1795), who married Catherine Stratton of Princes Risborough in 1829 and emigrated to Ontario, Canada in about 1840. At all events, John Lovell Badcock sold the Bledlow estate in 1826. The fate of the Maplethorpe estate in Lincolnshire is equally obscure. I can last find it associated with the Badcock name in 1793, and it is possibly that Lovell Badcock sold it to defray the cost of acquiring Little Missenden, although Thomas Stanhope Badcock was still described as having been 'of Little Missenden and Maplethorpe Hall' in Burke's Landed Gentry in the 1830s.
Thomas Stanhope Badcock never moved to Little Missenden, however, and he may have sold the estate, which was certainly on the market in 1807. I believe, however, that it probably remained in the possession of the family until the late 19th century and was occupied by a series of tenants from 1828 (or before) until 1892; certainly the late 19th century residents were tenants. In 1814 Thomas sold up his home in Buckingham, and soon afterwards he moved to Wonford House near Exeter (Devon). At his death in 1821 he was succeeded by his elder surviving son, Lt-Gen. Sir Lovell Benjamin Badcock (1784-1861), a career soldier who never married and was constantly on the move with his regiment. It is easy to see why he would have found a landed estate an incumbrance and leased it. In 1840, General Badcock, together with his younger brother, Rear-Admiral William Stanhope Badcock (c.1788-1859) and the latter's family changed their name to Lovell. Usually such changes of name were occasioned by a substantial inheritance, but this seems not to have been the case in this instance. The reason they gave for the change was to honour the memory of Sir Salathiel Lovell (c.1632-1713), but perhaps they had just got fed up with the crude jokes about the name 'Badcock' which one can readily imagine circulating in the officers' messes and ward rooms they frequented.
In 1861, the General left his real estate (probably including Little Missenden Abbey) to his nephew, the Admiral's son, Capt. Lovell Stanhope Richard Lovell (1826-1903), who also pursued a military career until about 1859. In the 1870s he was living in Ireland, but he later moved back to England and settled in a cottage in Devon. At his death his effects were valued at a mere £90. His son, William Stanhope Lovell (1848-1921), also had a small property in Devon and contrived to live on investment income and what he could make as a dog breeder, but left just £70 at his death.
Little Missenden Abbey, Buckinghamshire
|Little Missenden Abbey: the house from the south-east in the early 20th century, from an old postcard.|
At the core, and still discernible on the south-east facing garden front, is a modest gabled house, perhaps with 17th century origins. In 1807, when it was advertised for sale, the house consisted of a hall and three reception rooms on the ground floor, with six bedrooms on the first floor. Probably in the late 18th century, the south-east front of the house was given a prominent shallow two-storey curved bow and sash windows.
After a long period of occupation by tenants in the 19th century, the house was expanded and remodelled in 1892-94 by the architect W.H. Seth-Smith for his cousin Charles Edward Seth-Smith (d. 1894). Work seems to have started immediately after Charles acquired the property in 1892, and when he died suddenly two years later, work was still in progress. Within a few weeks his executors had auctioned off the building materials on site, but later they had a change of plan and decided to complete the alterations. Work seems to have resumed with a new contractor in August 1894. In November that a year a barn and shed which needed to be cleared for the new buildings were sold by auction; and the work was presumably finished by the time a tenant moved in, early in 1895.
|Little Missenden Abbey: the courtyard side of the house in the mid 20th century, from an old postcard|
Seth-Smith's additions included adding a further gable to the south-east front, and completely reworking the opposite side of the house in a more baronial style. Here the house faces onto a courtyard, entered through a low archway in a gatehouse created by Seth-Smith, and has in sequence a projecting entrance bay with Gothic porch, a huge three-transomed square window lighting the hall, with elaborately leaded glazing, and a tower set at an angle to the rest of the facade.
The house, which was referred to variously as 'Little Missenden Abbey' or 'Little Abbey, Great Missenden', was let throughout the early 20th century. Mr. & Mrs E.M. Johnson, who were tenants between 1916 and 1927, may have been responsible for rebuilding a rear service range in a gabled Arts & Crafts style. During the Second World War, the house was used as a school, and in 1946 it was converted into an hotel. The hotel closed in the 1970s and after a period of disuse the house was converted into a private hospital in 1982, with much associated new building around the original courtyard.
Descent: ...Lovell Badcock (1744-97); to brother, Thomas Stanhope Badcock (1749-1821), who let it; to son, Gen. Sir Lovell Benjamin Badcock (later Lovell) (1786-1861), kt., who let it and in 1807 advertised it for sale; to nephew, Capt. Lovell Stanhope Richard Badcock (later Lovell) (1826-1903), who let it and sold 1892 to Charles Edward Seth-Smith (d. 1894); to executors, who let the property; sold 1946 as an hotel; sold 1982 to Chiltern Hospital. Tenants included the Arnold family (1828-59); the Potter family (c.1864-69); J. Macmeiken, (c.1871-92); Robert Leake MP (d. 1901) and his widow (d. 1904); Ernest Callard (fl. 1904-10); Mrs. Annie Ford Priestley (fl. 1911-16); Mr & Mrs E.M. Johnson (fl. 1916-27); Mr. & Mrs. Dumas (fl. 1929); Mr. & Mrs. Byron Ronald (fl. 1929-34)...used as a school c.1940-45.
Badcock family of Little Missenden Abbey
Badcock, William (1622-98). Perhaps the person of this name baptised (his parents' names are not given) at Lexden (Essex), 27 January 1621/2. A London goldsmith and hilt-maker; author of A Touchstone for Gold and Silver Wares, 1677 (3rd edn., 1679). He was a member of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths (admitted 1668) and the Company of Longbow String Makers. He married 1st Mary [surname unknown] and 2nd, c.1670, Elizabeth [surname unknown] (d. 1701?) and had issue:
(1.1) Mary Badcock (1668-1710?), baptised at St. Clement Danes, London, 21 February 1668/9; married (contrary to her father's wishes), 16 December 1692 at St Mildred, Bread St., London, Henry Mitchell; possibly the person of this name buried at St Clement Danes, February 1710;
(2.1) William Badcock (1671-77), baptised at St Bride, Fleet St., London, 12 January 1671/2; died young and was buried at St Sepulchre, Holborn (Middx), February 1676/7;
(2.2) Richard Badcock (b. & d. 1674), baptised at St Bride, Fleet St., 10 February 1673/4; died in infancy and was buried at St Bride, Fleet St., in the same month;
(2.3) Richard Badcock (1675-1722) (q.v.);
(2.4) James Badcock (1682-1714?), baptised at St Bride, Fleet St., 12 February 1681/2; perhaps the person of this name buried at St Margaret Moses, Little Friday St., London, 4 July 1714;
(2.5) Elizabeth Badcock (1683-1716?), baptised at St Bride, Fleet St, 4 February 1682/3; perhaps the person of this name buried at St Martin, Ludgate, London, 24 March 1715/6;
(2.6) John Badcock (1685-1756), baptised at St Bride, Fleet St., 22 March 1684/5; apprenticed to Richard Badcock, longbow string maker, of London, 1702; later a mercer at London; married, before 1721, Eunice (1682-1756), daughter of Noah Neale of Stamford Baron (Lincs) and had issue two sons; buried at Hendon (Middx), 3 March 1756;
(2.7) William Badcock (1696-1731), baptised at St. Pancras, 16 August 1696; buried at St Andrew, Holborn, 22 November 1731.
He lived at Kentish Town, then on the outskirts of London.
He was buried at St. Pancras (Middx), 25 March 1698; his will was proved 29 March 1698. His first wife died about 1670. His widow was probably the person of that name buried at St Anne, Soho, Westminster (Middx), 9 September 1701.
Badcock, Richard (1675-1722). Eldest son of William Badcock (1622-98) of London, goldsmith, and his second wife Elizabeth, baptised at St Bride, Fleet St., London, 2 November 1675. A London goldsmith. He married, 13 December 1716 at St Mary Aldermanbury, London, Jane (b. 1687), youngest daughter of Sir Salathiel Lovell (d. 1713), kt., serjeant-at-law and a Baron of the Exchequer, and his wife Mary (d. 1719), and had issue:
(1) Mary Badcock (1717-18), baptised at St Andrew, Holborn (Middx), 30 September 1717; died in infancy and was buried at St Andrew, Holborn, 21 September 1718;
(2) Lovell Badcock (b. & d. 1718), baptised at St Andrew, Holborn, 7 August 1718; died in infancy and was buried at St. Andrew, Holborn, 25 October 1718;
(2) Mary Lovell Badcock (b. 1719), born 8 December and baptised at St Martin, Ludgate, London, 30 December 1719; probably died young;
(3) Richard Lovell Badcock (1722-49) (q.v.).
He died 12 August and was buried at St Martin, Ludgate, London, 17 August 1722. His widow died in 1723; her will was proved 27 July 1723.
Badcock, Richard Lovell (1722-49). Son of Richard Badcock (1675-1722) and his wife Jane, daughter of Sir Salathiel Lovell, kt., of Harlestone (Northants), born 9 January and baptised at St Martin, Ludgate, London, 31 January 1721/22. He was orphaned before the age of two and his mother appointed her sister, Martha Townsend, as his guardian. Educated at Queens' College, Cambridge (matriculated 1738). Churchwarden of Twickenham, 1747. He married, 16 January 1741/2 at St George's Chapel, Mayfair, London, his cousin, Mary Lovell, only daughter and heiress of Capt. Samuel Lovell (1690-1751) of Kensington (Middx), and had issue:
(1) Lovell Badcock (1744-97) (q.v.);
(2) Mary Badcock; married, 1 February 1767 at Mitcham (Surrey), Rev. Richard Gardner (d. 1799), vicar of Sibbertoft and Welford (Northants);
(3) Thomas Stanhope Badcock (1749-1821) (q.v.).
He lived at Twickenham (Middx) and acquired estates of Mablethorpe Hall (Lincs) and Corham's Manor, Bledlow (Bucks).
He died at Hotwells, Bristol, 7 September 1749, and was buried in Bristol Cathedral; his will was proved 26 October 1749. His widow married 2nd, 23 July 1750 at Henley-on-Thames (Oxon), Charles Barker (d. by 1767) 'of Ockingham (Wilts)' [Wokingham, Berks?]; her date of death is unknown.
Badcock, Lovell (1744-97). Elder son of Richard Lovell Badcock (1722-49) and his wife Mary, only daughter and heiress of Capt. Samuel Lovell, born 1744. An officer in 4th Dragoons (Cornet; retired, 1768) and later the Buckinghamshire Militia (Capt. of the Amersham troop by 1774; Col.); JP and DL (by 1774) for Bucks; High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire, 1795. He married, 1777 at Saunderton (Bucks), Susannah Etheridge (d. 1790), but had no issue.
He inherited Mablethorpe Hall and Corham's Manor at Bledlow (Bucks) from his father and lived at The Lyde, Bledlow, until he purchased Little Missenden Abbey in about 1792.
He died 4 July 1797 and was buried at Little Missenden, where he is commemorated by a monument. His wife was buried at Bledlow, 15 March 1790.
Badcock, Thomas Stanhope (1749-1821). Younger son of Richard Lovell Badcock (1722-49) and his wife Mary, only daughter and heiress of Capt. Samuel Lovell, born 1749. Captain and Adjutant of Buckinghamshire Militia, c.1789-93; JP and DL for Bucks; High Sheriff of Bucks, 1808-09. An officer in the 2nd (Mid) Buckinghamshire Volunteer Infantry (Maj., 1806). In 1810 he held a sinecure in the Stamp Office as Distributor of Stamps for Buckinghamshire. He married, 17 February 1780 at Tewkesbury (Glos), Anne (c.1762-1838), daughter of William Buckle of Mythe House, Tewkesbury, and Chaceley (Worcs, now Glos), and had issue:
(1) Mary Badcock (b. 1781), baptised at Tewkesbury, 7 June 1781; perhaps died young;
(2) Ann Bithiah Badcock (1782-1844), baptised at Tewkesbury, 21 April 1782; married, 21 September 1809 at East Farleigh (Kent), Maj-Gen. Sir Jasper Nicolls (1778-1849), kt. and had issue one son and eight daughters; died in Rome (Italy) on her way back from India, 2 April 1844;
(3) John Lovell Badcock (b. & d. 1783), died in infancy and was buried at Chaceley, 9 August 1783;
(4) Gen. Sir Lovell Benjamin Badcock (later Lovell) (1784-1861), kt. (q.v.);
(5) Sophia Susanna Badcock (c.1786-1880), born about 1786; married, 9 June 1814 at Heavitree, Exeter (Devon), Rev. Dr. James Duke Coleridge (1789-1857), eldest son of Col. Coleridge of Heaths Court, Ottery St. Mary (Devon) and had issue two daughters; died 12 December 1880; administration granted to her daughter, 31 August 1880 (effects under £200);
(6) Vice-Admiral William Stanhope Badcock (later Lovell) (c.1788-1859) (q.v.).
He lived in Buckingham (Bucks) until 1814 and later at Wonford House, Heavitree, Exeter. He inherited Little Missenden Abbey from his elder brother in 1797, but seems never to have occupied it.
He died 13 April 1821 and was buried in Bath Abbey; his will was proved in the PCC, 27 July 1821. He is commemorated on his brother's monument at Little Missenden. His widow died 29 January 1838 and was buried at St. Andrew, Hove (Sussex).
|Maj-Gen. Sir Lovell B. Lovell|
Image: National Trust
He inherited Little Missenden Abbey from his father in 1821. In 1828-59 the house was let to the Arnold family. He lived latterly in Brighton (Sussex).
He died at Brighton, 11 March 1861; his will was proved 16 April 1861 (effects under £800).
|Vice-Adm. William Stanhope Lovell|
Image: National Trust
(1) Lovell Stanhope Richard Badcock (later Lovell) (1826-1903) (q.v.);
(2) Selina Frances Nanette Louisa Badcock (later Lovell) (1822-1905), born 1 December 1822 and was baptised at Beckenham (Kent), 4 April 1823; emigrated to Australia, 1863; teacher with Queensland Department of Public Instruction, 1873-95, latterly at Sandy Cape Provisional School; an amateur naturalist who contributed to the collections of Queensland Museum; died unmarried at Cooktown, Queensland (Australia), 10 October 1905;
(3) Georgiana Jane Henrietta Eliza Lovell Badcock (later Lovell) (1824-1910), born 10 March and baptised at Eltham (Kent), 12 May 1824; married, 20 November 1845 at St George, Hanover Square, London, Sir John Harpur Crewe (1824-86), 9th bt. and had issue two sons and one daughter; died 28 May and was buried at Calke (Derbys), 1 June 1910; will proved 29 July 1910 (estate £1,769);
(4) Matilda Sophia Badcock (later Lovell) (1831-99), baptised at Lewisham (Surrey), 3 August 1831; author of Edible Molluscs of Great Britain and Ireland (with recipes for cooking them), 1867 (2nd edn, 1884); lived latterly at Ventnor (IoW); died unmarried at St. Leonards-on-Sea (Sussex), 21 May 1899; will proved 13 October 1899 (effects £522).
He lived at West Lodge, Bexleyheath (Kent).
He died at Great Yarmouth, 20 May, and was buried in the churchyard of St Mary, Bexley (Kent), 27 May 1859, where he is commemorated by a monument; administration of his goods was granted to his daughter, Georgiana, 4 July 1859 (effects under £600). His wife died 30 March and was buried at St Mary, Bexley, 6 April 1838.
Badcock (later Lovell), Lovell Stanhope Richard (1826-1903). Only son of Adm. William Stanhope Badcock (later Lovell) (c.1788-1859) and his wife Selina, youngest daughter of Sir Henry Harpur Crewe, 7th bt., of Calke Abbey (Derbys), born at Terret House (Bucks), 4 December 1826. An officer in the 16th and later 13th Foot (Ensign, 1843, Lt., 1846; Capt. 1851; retired by 1859). He changed his name from Badcock to Lovell by deed poll in 1840. He married, 13 February 1848 on Corfu, Matilda Jane (b. c.1822), daughter of Surgeon-Col. George Hume Reade, and had issue:
(1) William Stanhope Lovell (1848-1921), born in Corfu, 22 October 1848; briefly a clerk in the Inland Revenue Dept. as a young man; later he lived on his investments and operated as a dog and pigeon breeder in Devon; was a keen fisherman and excellent shot and 'possessed the charming and rather rare gift of making and maintaining warm friendships'; a Conservative in politics; in later years he adopted the hyphenated surname, Stanhope-Lovell; married 1st, 26 June 1873 at St Mary Magdalene, Taunton (Somerset), Ellen Veronica (d. 1907), daughter of Maj-Gen. George Mein, and had issue; married 2nd, 28 April 1908 at Llangenny (Brecons), Jenny Kate (b. c.1874), daughter of Edwin F. Jones of The Park, Middlesborough and Crickhowell; died 19 March and was buried at North Curry (Devon), 23 March 1921; administration granted to his son, 15 June 1921 (estate £70);
(2) Edith Laura Mathilda Lovell (c.1852-1937), born in Co. Offaly, c.1852; married, 27 June 1877 at Kilbridge, Bray (Wicklow), Percy Duke Coleridge (1850-81), son of Francis James Coleridge of the Manor House, Ottery St Mary (Devon), and had issue two sons; died at Torquay (Devon), 16 December 1937; will proved 3 February 1938 (estate £17,369);
(3) Emily Georgiana Lovell (1854-1930), baptised at Southampton (Hants), 23 August 1854; married, 2 June 1880 at Christow (Devon), Rev. Owen Fanshawe Glanville (1848-1927), eldest son of Capt. W.F. Glanville RN, and had issue two sons and one daughter; died 25 September 1930; administration of goods granted to son, 30 December 1930 (estate £312);
(4) Amy Isabel Jane Lovell (1856-1927), born in Plymouth, Jul-Sep 1856; died unmarried at Paignton (Devon), 8 April 1927; will proved 31 May 1927 (estate £1,354);
(5) George Herbert Salathiel Lovell (1859-1901), born 26 March and baptised at St Peter, Plymouth, 29 May 1859; served as an officer in the Carlow Militia (2nd Lt., 1878); emigrated to South Africa before 1893 and was Sub-Inspector of Native Police and an officer in the Roberts Horse (Lt.); died of phthisis (TB) at Wynberg, Cape Colony (South Africa), 14 April 1901;
(6) Mary Winnie Catherine Selina Lovell (b. 1861), born March 1861; ran a very small boarding school at the family home, Moor View, South Brent; died unmarried after 1927.
He inherited Little Missenden Abbey from his uncle in 1861, which was sold, with 45 acres, in 1892 for £4,750. The house was let to the Potter family, c.1864-69 and to J. Macmeiken, c.1871-92. In 1873 he was living at Glencormack House, Bray (Wicklow), but the latter part of his life was spent in Devon.
He died 29 April 1903 and was buried at South Brent (Devon), where he is commemorated by a monument; his will was proved 7 July 1903 (effects £90). His wife died 7 November 1895.
Burke's Landed Gentry, 1838, pp. 77-79; VCH Buckinghamshire, vol. 2, 1908, pp. 247-48; Sir N. Pevsner & E. Williamson, The buildings of England: Buckinghamshire, 2nd edn., 1994, p. 444.
Location of archives
Lovell and Badcock families: genealogical notes and misc. family papers, 17th-20th cents. [West Sussex Record Office, Add. MSS. 33,991-34,114]. A few miscellaneous estate and family papers will also be found in the Harpur Crewe family papers at Derbyshire Record Office and among the records of Corham's Manor, Bledlow in the Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies.
Coat of arms
Barry nebuly of six, or and gules.
Can you help?
Here are a few notes about information and images which would help to improve the account above. If you can help with any of these or with other additions or corrections, please use the contact form in the sidebar to get in touch. Can anyone:
- Explain why Lovell Badcock was put forward as head of the list of nominees for the shrievalty for several years in succession when he was not pricked as sheriff on the first occasion?
- Confirm or disprove my assertion above that the Badcock (later Lovell) family owned Little Missenden Abbey until 1892? It is possible that it was sold in 1807, but 19th century newspaper references to the occupiers suggest that they were tenants not owners of the freehold.
- An early to mid 19th century watercolour of Little Missenden Abbey by G.S. Shepherd was sold at Sothebys, 12 June 1980. Does anyone know the current whereabouts of this drawing?
Revision and acknowledgements
This post was first published 13 October 2017 and updated 8 December 2019, 11 August 2021 and 1 April 2022.