BAILRIGG: ITS ANTIQUITY.
There are various significations to the term Bal, Baile and Bale. Bal
is pure Gaelic
for a residence, as in many Scottish place-names. It also signifies a town, as is seen in
Iceland in numerous instances. A town having been very distinct, so far as size and
constitution are concerned, in ancient time. Then we have Baile
a tribe, and
a boundary. Balrig, Bailrigge, and Baylerigge probably denote
dwelling-place by the ridge. To my mind the name harks back to the Celtic Beal,
indicating the sun, or Baal's ridge; also to Baal
a prince, a lord, "the
demesne of the lord on the ridge." There is no entry in the Inquia Post Mort,
or any other work consulted, of Gardyner, of Bailrigge, in early times. One Aylward,
appears to have been a prominent lord of Scotforth in the early
days of King John and of Henry III.
Roger, son of Aylward, of Scotforth, and Roger, son of Roger, son of Alyward, are
often mentioned in early charters. This latter Roger is named in connection with
an acre of land in Langthwaite, at a place called Burghthwaitehurst, between the
land of John Winmarleigh and that of Richard, son of Ralph. Roger, of Bailrigg, and
Adam, of Bailrigg, are named in "Materials for a History of the Church of Lancaster"
(Roper), vol. ii.
The very name Alyward, is Teutonic, and signifies a formidable guard or guardian. It
is not too much to believe that John Gardyner was descended from this Aylward.
In the "Lancashire Inquests," 1205 to 1307, Roger de Balrig appears (p. 257). He is
also mentioned as the holder of a cottage and one acre of land rendering 12d. yearly (p. 308).
Roger de Balrig appears 30 Edward I., 1st May, 1302, concerning messuages of land with
appurtenances in Caton, which John, son of Adam de Wellslete held, which John had been
outlawed for felony, id est, for causing the death of Ralph, Chaplain of Claghton (Claughton).
(Land in the King's hands.)
In the "Lancashire Inquests" (1310 to 1333) John de Balrig appears, 10th Edward
II., No. 25, p. 151.
In the "Final Concords," 1308 to 1377, part II., "John de Balrig and Matilda his
wife and William de Slaithburn, Chaplain, the cider, and Richard de Gairstang, Chaplain, are
entered as deforciants of a fourth part of the manor of Scotford, Lancaster. John (de
Balrig) acknowledged the said fourth part to be the right of William (de Slaithburn) except
four shillings and one penny of rent and a rent of the third part of a pound of pepper in
the said fourth part tor which William and Richard granted the said fourth part and rent to
John and Matilda (de Balrig) together with the homages and services of John de Fourneys,
Henry, son of John, son of Adam de Scotford, William Elisone and Joan his wife, and Roger
Hudsone of Burgh and their heires for the tenement which they held in the said fourth part
and they rendered the said fourth part to them in the Court to have and to hold to the
said John and Matilda (de Balrig) and to the heirs issuing of their bodies, in default to
remain to the right heirs of John (de Balrig)."
Matter in dispute tried at Westminster on the Quindene of St. Michael, 22nd Edward III.,
13th October, 1848 (p. 126).
A Thomas de Balrig is alluded to in a note on p. 52, ib.
In the "Lancashire Court Rolls," 1323 4, John de Balrig is summoned for "unjust
withholding of a debt against John Druan (fined) 2d." (See Perquisites, Wapentake
of Lonsdale, 12th November, 1324, p. 109.) John de Balrig is again fined 3d. because
he "did not have William, son of James there" (probably relations of the same defendant),
10th December, 1325.
One Thomas Best is fined 4d. for "unjust withholding of a debt against Roger de
Balrig," p. 113.