Originally called Herring Hill after Herrin Hill House, later farm, it was owned by the Abels or Abell family, going back to the time of Edward I. It was still held by the family in the 16thCentury when documents show one John Abell, of Herring Hill, leased the estate to Edmond Burton, of Crayford. The lease for 21 years included the mansion, with barns, stables, out houses, orchards, gardens and yards. As well as a little orchard or plot of ground called Copte Hall; “also of a field called Hatters, 20 acres, adjoining the house; also of another field, Netherwood Field, abutting the west on land of Sir Thomas Compton and the east on land of Edmond Cooke, esq. All in occupation of said John Abell and formerly of Samuell Abell, deceased. Clause reserving timber to owner.” The contract was datedÂ December 8, 1612.
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