Wolborough And The Birth Of Newton AbbotPosted: May 28, 2012
On the South side of the River Lemon further development took place in Wolborough, which had existed before the Domesday record and it is thought the Manor House was located on the site of Wolborough Barton, on the hill beside Wolborough Church.
Wolborough records go back to the reign of King Richard I, who was imprisoned by Leopold, Duke of Austria who demanded a ransom.
William Brewer inherited Wolborough Manor from his father Ralph de Bruere.
William Brewer was the Lord of the Manor of Torre and Justiciar and had the responsibility to raise the money for the King’s ransom. William was only able to raise 70,000 Marks, so the Duke of Austria demanded 67 hostages from the nobility of England to guarantee the remainder of the ransom of 150,000 Marks. William Brewer’s son was one of the hostages.
The Duke of Austria was fatally wounded; fortunately the Austrian Church had previously persuaded the Duke to release the captives, even though the full ransom had not been paid. Consequently, the Austrian Church sent representatives to Torbay in 1196 and they were allowed to construct Torre Abbey on land owned by William Brewer to be occupied by the Austrian Abbots of Torre, with financial support from William Brewer.
From then on the Manor of Wolborough became known as the new town of Abbot, hence Newton Abbot.