by Peter Badham

This article is based in part on a presentation made at the B1NS Conference in May 2007.

There are a number of instances of early ap Adam presence in the Forest, which are largely dealt with in Badham Delvings and which I will not repeat here. However, one new piece of information that has come to hand since May 2007 probably does relate to the Forest and, specifically, to Aylburton near Lydney. This bit of the story is to be found in the register of Simon de Montacute, Bishop of Worcester 1334–1337, which I came across when browsing in a Sussex antique market! It’s in the form of a printed calendar of the register published in 1996 by the Worcestershire Historical Society.1 Calendar entry 130 dated 3rd June 1334 reads:

Memorandum that the lord absolved Nicholas de Magor, from sentence of suspension from the celebration of divine service (divina) incurred by reason of his solemnisation of matrimony between Elias de Ailberton and Joan daughter of the lord John Abadam, knight, outside the parish church and without the calling of banns, he not having obtained the diocesan’s licence. The bishop enjoined salutary penance and ratified the marriage insofar as it concerned the person of the said priest.

“Lord John Abadam” is of course Sir John ap Adam, known to us as Baron John, and we know that he died in 1311. We also know that his son Thomas was of age in 1325, so this suggests that Thomas’s sister Joan was born towards the end of her father’s life. I am not clear why the Bishop of Worcester was involved, because Magor is in Monmouthshire and the Llandaff diocese, and at that time Aylburton was in the Hereford diocese. There is some possibility that this was because of the involvement in Aylburton of Llanthony Priory. We can’t tell from the calendar entry where the marriage took place. The preface to the printed calendar tells us that not all entries are in full, so it is possible that more might be found in the original register. However, the entry does add another person and her husband into our knowledge of the tree and we note she has the same forename as her grandmother, Joan de Knoville.

Also in the calendar for 13th May 1335 is an entry about the installation of brother Ralph de Tettebury as master of the house and church of St Mark, Bilswick, near Bristol. Brother Ralph was presented to the post by Thomas Apadam, knight. This is the Baron’s son mentioned above and St. Mark is the monastic house which we have noticed before as causing Baron John and his wife Elizabeth née Gurney some disturbance (p.156 Delvings). A year later Bishop Montacute visited on 28th May to receive his… “procuration and on the same day he made corrections there”. So Sir Thomas’s presentee wasn’t keeping all in order. In those days the medieval diocese of Worcester stretched right to the northern edge of what we now think of as Bristol.

We return now to the main topic in hand, the presence of Badham families in the Forest of Dean. The first figure (Figure 1) has as its centre, Parkend, which was the central position in the Forest, where most of those who came to the Conference stayed, or came to the evening meal. The map is produced using a free piece of software for Microsoft Windows personal computers called Parish Locator.2 It seems simple in construction, however, and might well run on a Windows emulator. The programme allows you to identify the location of a particular parish. Also you can determine a central parish and a radius from that parish and the programme will produce a list of the parishes falling within that radius. If you wish, it will also produce a map similar to the Figure 1 below. However, the illustration here has had the approximate routes of the rivers Wye and Severn added in blue and some of the parish names have had to be tidied up as they can be truncated or overlap each other. This is not a problem in use, as the list and map go hand in hand. A useful feature is that the parishes are listed and plotted irrespective of their county or diocese. We thus see that a farmer’s son living at Parkend would be at a comfortable walking distance of a sweetheart within the first two circles and within easy riding distance to most of the others, unless it is those across the Severn or, perhaps, the Wye. The red dates on the figure are those of the first entry in those parishes, for which there is one entry or more, in the Society database. I have also shown the 15th-century will relating to Staunton. I find the number of parishes within such a radius, plotted in this way, a salutary reminder of the task we have in finding possible marriages or families of origin of our ancestors. In this instance there are more than 70 potential parishes to think about! At the same time it does give us a good system for planning our searches.

It can be seen that, from our present knowledge, the heart of the Forest is not a Badham area. There have been, however, penetrations into the western and north-eastern edges. The grouping around the upper reaches of the Severn estuary towards Gloucester could well be one family and at least one individual was a mariner or ship owner. William Badham of Newnham, who died in 1632, had “the greater part of his estate in shipping”. He was part owner of “two barkes” (barques) called Gabriel and Lyon, an “open vesell” the Jonathan, a ship Besse and an unspecified boat the Angel. William’s wife was called Sylvester and he left four sons: William, Richard, Thomas and John, the last two under 17 and also a daughter Elizabeth.3 The coastal port books for the port of Gloucester have largely survived in the exchequer papers at The National Archives and a scheme under the auspices of the University of Wolverhampton has produced a transcript database.4 From this we know that the Gabriel left Gloucester for Aberdovey on 15th March 1630 carrying 10 weys of malt. The wey was a dry measure of about 40 bushels although it could vary from place to place and through time. A bushel of grain could be from 40 to 60 pounds but I can’t find a weight for malted barley. Roughly speaking, it seems this cargo would have weighed around 8 tons. Clearly the Gabriel was a decked vessel capable of extended coastal voyages. In his will William mentions his kinsman John Verry of Minsterworth, just a little way upriver. The database holds details of a series of 10 voyages made by the Minsterworth vessel the John, between 12th January 1585 and the last which left on 21st February 1586. The merchant involved was William Verry (variously spelt) of Minsterworth. The vessel was skippered by George Abadam for the first three voyages and then by John Abadam for the rest. On each occasion the voyage was from Gloucester to Cardiff and the cargo was from 3 to 7 weys of “brassei hordei”. This mysterious cargo even has Google so stumped it came up with no references at all. A possible clue is that John Abaddame skippered a voyage of the Speedwell from Gloucester to Cardiff with 6 weys of malt on 5th May 1590. Hordein is a starchy substance derived from barley, so the best guess is that this should read barley hordein and is an equivalent of malt, but the jury is still out.

The Peter, the home port of which varied between Elmore and Gloucester and the master of which was either George or John Baddam, is recorded as making two voyages from Cardiff to Gloucester. On one occasion it was carrying 3 tons of iron and 200 stone of cheese. (A stone of cheese weighed 16 lbs.) On the second occasion it carried 30 kilderkin (115 lbs) of cheese and 8 kilderkin of butter. Although these were winter voyages and the cheese would possibly mature, the trip couldn’t have been too long without refrigeration for the butter. The final recorded trip of the Peter was to Bristol with 22 weys of malt, on behalf of Harry Gibbes a brewer. There are a few other trips recorded which involved Badham individuals including one occasion as shipper, when George Baddam of Longney, yeoman, moved 160 bushels of oats from Cardiff to Gloucester in April 1600. Perhaps winter feed had run out? It seems likely that some of the Badham presence in Gloucester came from these maritime families grouped on both banks of the Severn, a few miles south of the city. The map shows this area and also the line of the Gloucester and Berkeley canal which would have affected much of this river-borne traffic when it opened in 1827 (See Figure 2).

Figure 2 - Upper Severn Estuary

Finally, in this saga of mercantile activity, it is interesting to note movements further upriver. Thomas Adhams of Worcester is sending hops and wool to Bristol in 1625. The John from the port of Tewkesbury, where the Warwickshire Avon joins the Severn, arrives in Gloucester from Milford (Haven?) on 24th April 1666 with a comprehensive cargo of 500 bushels of wheat, 500 bushels of oats, 80 bushels of rye, 13 fardle (bundles) of sheep + calf + white leather, 2 bags of “suchware as Rabbit, Otter and Fox skins,” 170 stone of wool, 2 boxes of feathers and 1300 horns. The latter were presumably for making buttons and other horn derived articles. I estimate this cargo to have weighed about 25 tons. Welsh exports seem, from this example, to have been doing well in this early Restoration period, perhaps affected by disturbances in the English Channel due to the wars with France and Holland.
A family of perhaps special interest, because of their possible link to early ap Adam roots, is to be found at Tidenham. Bradney gives an outline and tentative tree of this family and says “they had a lease of Badam’s Court [in that parish] before 1566”. In Bradney’s tree they are shown as descended from Reginald, father of Baron John ap Adam and, as we know, the Baron had fairly extensive holdings in Beachley and Tidenham (See Figure 3).

There are fairly full records of this family from the late 17th century and the narrative tree1 at the end gives details of what we know so far. The top of the tombstone which featured in the June Newsletter (2007) relates to Family Two. Together with the outline tree this information considerably expands and, to some extent, corrects the later generations to be seen in Bradney’s tree. The information carries the usual “health warning” that although efforts have been made to make it accurate, mistakes are likely and it’s still work in progress. However, this particular tree is more fully researched than many and, as may be seen in the narrative version, it calls on a great many sources. These include parish registers, Welsh marriage licences, wills, both Welsh and Prerogative Court of Canterbury, and monumental inscriptions. Also extremely useful is a set of papers compiled by George Ormerod, the 19th-century antiquarian, who added the inscription above the stained glass ap Adam coat of arms in Tidenham church. Ormerod lived at Sedbury Park, after which the papers are named.6 The extracts from the family bible and records of monumental inscriptions he gathered are extremely valuable. We can see how the main family seems to have died out and I am not aware of any descendants, although there may well be. There were certainly later Badham families in the area east of the City of London who might have come from this particular branch of the Badham tribe.

Narrative Pedigree of Baddam of Tidenham, Chepstow and London


  1. The presence of + before a record number means that further information will be found later.
  2. BADDAM is mainly used as this is the most common form but, as is to be expected, the form varies.

Family One - First Generation

1.  William BADDAM [1] was born in 1670 (approx.). He married Elizabeth CARTER [2] on 2nd October 1690 in Tidenham.

Elizabeth CARTER [2] was born in 1668 (approx.). She and William BADDAM had the following children:

+2 William BADDAM (1691?- ) [3]
+3 Hopkin BADHAM (1692?-1744)
 4 Frances BADDAM (1694?-) [5]. Frances was born in 1694 (approx.). She was christened on *th February 1694.
+5 Ann BADDAM (1701?-) [6]
+6 Catherine BADDAM (1703? -) [7]
+7 Arthur BADDAM (1705?-1775?)

Second Generation

2.  William BADDAM [3], son of William BADDAM [1] and Elizabeth CARTER [2], was born in 1691 (approx.). He was christened on 11th October 1691 in Tidenham. He married Elizabeth GILES [16] in 1742 in Chepstow? by Licence.

Elizabeth GILES [16] died on 17th February 1758. Elizabeth was buried in 1758 in Chepstow churchyard. MI recorded in Sedbury Park papers Glou RO D262 T 16  Widow.

3.   Hopkin BADHAM [4], son of William BADDAM [1] and Elizabeth CARTER [2], was born in 1692 (approx.). He was christened on 4th September 1692 in Tidenham. He married Hannah JARRET [17] on 29th January 1735 in Chepstow, by licence. He made a will in 1744 in Chepstow. Bond and inventory. Admon? NLW LL 1744/33 Although given as Mason his inventory: groceries, tobacco, rice, sugar, salt (.5 ton); suggests he was also a victualer, also half share @ £50 in ship Nancy. Hopkin died on 29th April 1744. about 12 o‘clock of the night Glou RO bible extract D262 T16.

Hannah JARRET [17] married Thomas BARNARD in 1745. She and Hopkin BADHAM had the following children:

8 Ann BADHAM (1737-1764) [24]. Ann was born on 29th April 1737. 6 p.m. see bible extract Glu RO  D262 T16. Ann ws christened on 19th may 1737 in Cepstow. She died on 15th Fecember 1764
9 Hannah BADHAM (1741-) [25]. Hannah was born on 28th August 1741.  4 a.m. Glouc RO  D262 T16
+10 William BADHAM (1744-1789) [26]

5.   Ann BADDAM [6], daughter of William BADDAM [1] and Elizabeth CARTER [2], was born in 1701 (approx.). She was christened on 20th July 1701 in Tidenham.

John SAYCE [19] was a Mariner of Tidenham. He and Ann BADDAM had the following children:


John SAYCE (-) [20]


6.   Catherine BADDAM [7], daughter of William BADDAM [1] and Elizabeth CARTER [2], was born in 1703 (approx.). She married William BARBER [8] in 1734 in Chepstow? Mercer, Licence.

7.   Arthur BADDAM [9], son of William BADDAM [1] and Elizabeth CARTER [2], was born in 1705 (approx.). He married Lydia [10] in 1727 (approx.) in London? He had administration granted in March 1775 in St Botolph, Aldgate, London. PCC Prob 6/151 March. Arthur died in 1775 (approx.).

Lydia [10] had probate or administration granted in December 1775. She died only a few months after her husband Arthur. Admin. PCC  Prob 6/151. Lydia died in 1775 in St Botolph, Aldgate, London. She and Arthur BADDAM had the following children:

12 Ann BADDAM (1728?-1784) [11].  Ann was born in 1728 (approx.). Shee was christened on 19 April 1728 in Whitewchapel.  She died in 1784 in London, St Botolph, Aldgate. She was buried on 15th December 1784 in Hackney? See sister Catherine.
+13 Catherine BADDAM (1730?-1791) [12]
14 William BADDAM (1732?-) [13]. William was bprn in 1732 (approx). He was christened on 21st April 1734 in Whitechapel.
15 William BADDAM (1734?-) [14]. William was born in 1734 (approx.). He was christened on 21st April 1734 in Whitechapel.
16 John BADDAM (1736?-1774) [15]. John was born in 1736 (approx.). He was christened on 20th June 1736 in Whitechapel. He died in 1774 in City of London, before his parents. The address was: Gracechurch St. PCC Will proved 7th May 1774. Mess & Ten in Chepstow in tenure of cousin Catherine Barber. Mentions Mother's sister Elizabeth Ingram.

Third Generation

10.   William BADHAM [26], son of Hopkin BADHAM [4] and Hannah JARRET [17], was born on 6th April 1744.  between 1 and 2 a.m. on a Friday  Glou RO D262 T16.  William married Sarah HOLLOWAY [27] on 6th May 1767 in Chepstow? Licence.  He made a will in 1789 in PCC residing at Chepstow PROB11 / 1181.  Property in Monmouth town, Chepstow and Tidenham. Left an annuity to his cousin Catherine dau of Arthur, House called Plumpton in Tidenham. Share in a number of ships and other vessels. One executor was his brother-in-law James Holloway.  William died on 19th May 1789.  at 2.0 p.m. Glous RO D262 T16.  William was buried in 1789 in Chepstow.  MI  Glouc RO D262 T16. Same tombstone records death of William, his daughter Frances Tryphena, sister-in-law Margaret Holloway and his wife Sarah on 8th Oct 1830.

With his sister, Ann, the beneficiary of a grant by their mother, of 15 acres of land and buildings in Herringbridge between Badams Court and the highway from Sedbury dated 16th Nov 1745. Glouc RO D262 T16. This may have been done when she remarried to Thomas Barnard. The absence of sister Hannah suggests she was dead by this date.

Sarah HOLLOWAY [27] was born in 1745 in Chepstow. The address was: Church Street.  Seems to have died possessing  the family bible. Sarah died in 1830. She made a will in 1831 in PCC residing at Chepstow. PCC PROB 11/ 1781 probate 25th Feb 1831. Mentions niece Sarah Morgan widow of late Rev. William Morgan. [dau of Sarah‘s brother James?] and a dau of Sarah named Anne.

She and William BADHAM had the following children:

17 Tryphena Frances BADHAM (1771-1772) [28]. Tryphena was born on 11th January 1771. 12 o'clock. Glou RO D262 t16. Tryphena died on 18th January 1772. 2.0 a.m.

13.   Catherine BADDAM [12], daughter of Arthur BADDAM [9] and Lydia [10], was born in 1730 (approx.). She was christened on 6th December 1730 in Whitechapel. She made a will in 1791 in PCC Prob11/1202. The address was: Rosemary Lane [7 Star Court, in cousin     Williams will 1789]. In her will she mentions a cousin Sarah Badam but this is presumably the wife [née Holloway] of cousin William. Catherine died on 23th February 1791 in St Botolph, Aldgate, London. Date from family bible record in Sedbury park papers. Glouc RO D262 T16. Catherine was buried in 1791 in Hackney. Her request in her will was to be buried in “the new park of Hackney churchyard called dry ground in the manner of my dear relations”.

Family Two - First Generation
1.   William BADDAM [21] was born in 1659 (approx.). He died in 1735. MI Tidenham recorded in Sedbury Pk papers Glou RO D262 T16.Catherine [22] was born in 1655 (approx.). She died in 1732. She and William BADDAM had the following children:


William BADDAM (1689?-1753) [23]. William was born in 1689 (approx.). He was christened on 16th December 1689 in Tidenham. Baptism assumed his on basis pf tomb record. Wi;;iam died in 1753. He was buried in 1753 in Tidenham. See tomb record for his father.

  1. Calendar of the Register of Simon de Montacute, Bishop of Worcester, 1334-1337, R M Haines. Published by the Worsetershire Historical Society, New Series, Volume 15 1996
  2. Parish Locator is available (August 2008) as a download from  -  go through "Parish Locator" and "Downloads"
  3. TNA Prerogative Court of Canterbury ref. PROB 11/162
  4. Gloucester Coastal Port Books 1575-1765 data CD published by Adams Mathews Publishers, Exchequer papers at the National Archives, ref. E/190
  5. Both the narrative and outline trees are produced by the programme Family Historian v 3 which will produce both graphical and text output.
  6. Gloucester Record Office, Sedbury Park Estate Papers, ref. D262