of Abrahall, who held lands adjacent to
Gillow and who was
the most powerful man in the area of
Archenfield and the Hundred of Wormelow,
purchased the estate from the Pembridge heir in 1417-18.
Abrahall was also a MP for Hereford
city in 1419.
Abrahall had been receiver-general for the widow of Sir
Gilbert Talbot, lord of Archenfield, Goodrich Castle,
Eccleswall, Penyard castle and a great deal more.
On the inhertance of Sir John Talbot, Gilbert Talbot's
who was later to be the first earl of Shrewsbury,
John Abrahall was dismissed from office and a bitter
began between the two,
with each man at the head of a small army.
The late local archaeologist and historian
has written about these events:-
'The feud was part personal and part political, but the
activities of both of these 'companies' made the lives of
the inhabitants of the Hundred of Wormelow intolerable, and
in 1423 they were driven to petition the King's Parliament
for help. The petition told Parliament about:
'the many extortions, oppressions, murders, homicides,
abductions, the forcible oustering from their lands and
tenements of men with their wives and children, the taking
of fines and the taking of all their goods and chattles'
'the castle of Goderiche
which is in the March of Wales and where the said persons
are held in strong prison until they have paid fines and
ransoms to Sir John Talbot and other gentlemen... '.
The petition lists the names of 50 other men in Sir John
Talbot's company and 27 men and a woman in John Abrahall's.
In other documents John Abrahall was recorded as acting
'along with other Welsh evildoers to the number of sixty
all in warlike array'
on one foray, and with 80 in another. Stolen
cattle and horses were
driven to Gillow and prisoners were kept
there until they paid ransom. It may be of interest for us
today to note that Parliament did absolutely nothing beyond
expressing the pious hope:
'And may the act [of telling everyone to keep the peace] and
the enrolment of this petition accomplish what is desired.'