Banlieu

The early privileged area of the Abbey was the Banlieu , nominally the distance of a league around the Abbey taken from the high altar of the Abbey church itself.

Unfortunately the league was an uncertain measurement, sometimes one mile and at other times two or three.

The charter of Henry I only defines the southern boundary running through the village of Wistow and touching Great Ravelly, the boundaries on all other sides are merely indicated as in the marsh.

The term Banlieu is Norman French and the Norman French league (leuca) was two miles. The Ramsey leucata more nearly approached three miles around the Abbey. (VCH)

The area marked on the map is an approximation of the information given on the boundaries in the Victoria History of the County of Huntingdon.

The following description of the Banlieu is detailed from King Henry's confirmation.

Begining at

1. Humberdale ( the Humber was the early name of the river skirting the eastern fen margin north of Warboys)

2. They proceed to Wistowlowe (Wistow mound) through the the middle of Wistow vill, then onto

3. Raueleston (Ravely stone) then onto

4. Hubbermerecote (a small dwelling -hut at Uggmere) then onto

5. Schaldomere (now represented by Chalderbeach Farm) then onto

6. Asserbeche (an ash wood besides Whittlesey mere) Ashbeach drove? then onto

7. Newelode (the new drainage ditch running NW from Whittlesey mere) which runs between Middlemoor and Kingsdelf (the earlier name of Cnuts dyke) then onto

8. Beurepe (Barrow north of Ramsey Mere) then onto

9. Schirelnekote (a cotland? beside the shire boundary between Huntingdonshire and Cambridgeshire) then  onto

10. Polingiskote (Unlocated) then onto

11. Caldemowe Hadh ( Heathland to the east of the island of Ramsey) then onto

12. Goldpyttislade ( the lode running south of Ramsey) then onto

13. Humberdale ( full circle)

(Ref 6)