The Cotyers were a well to do 15th century family, one branch lived at Stocks Farm (Church Road) and the other at Hayes (Woodins. Church Road). John and Rose Cotyer of "Le Stokke" are mentioned in the will of John Parysse in 1451. The last definite link with Hartley is Peter Cotyer of Dartford (1528), who left lands to his daughter Mary. One field we know definitely was later part of Middle Farm. She still owned Woodins in 1541.
In the name of God, Amen. The 16th day of Novemeber in the year of our Lord 1452. I John Cotyer at haye in the parish of Hertle [............] make my will in this manner. Firstly I leave my soul to God etc. and my body to be buried in the Churchyard on the southern side. Item: I leave to the high altar there for tithes forgot: 20d. Item: I leave for the repairs of the Church there - 40d. Item: I leave to each of my godchildren - 4d. The remainder of my goods after debts have been paid, I give and bequeath to Christine my wife [................ms faded].
This is the last wish of me John Cotyer, as to the lands and tenements which I have in the parish of Hertley in the county of Kent and elsewhere. Firstly I will that Christine my wife shall have all my tenement with all lands and their appurtenances, called "le Hayes", situate and lying in the said parish for a period of 16 years after my decease without impeachment of waste. In addition after the said years, I will that Th[omas?], my son shall have the said tenement with all lands and their appurtenances; to him and his legitimate heirs. And I will that the said Thomas pay to William, his brother - 40s; and to each of his two sisters - 20s. And if it should happen that the said Thomas shall die without an heir of his body legitmately conceived, then I will that the said tenement with [............] shall come by remainder to William my son; to him and the heirs of his body legitimately conceived, paying to each of his sisters - 20s. And if it should happen that the said William shall die without heir of his body legitimately conceived, then I will that the said lands and tenement shall be sold by my feoffees with the consent and overview of Sir John Bonde rector [.................] as with the moneys received therefore, I will that Joan and Alice my daughters [shall have?] for their share of the said moneys - 20s each. Of the remainder of the said sum I will that one part be disbursed on repairs of the said parish Church of Hertle. And the other part to be disbursed [..............ms too faint to read].
This will was proved at Malling on 18 December 1452 (Bishop's register Kent Archives CKS DRb/Pa2 fo 197), executor was wife Christine; other executor John Hancock was released.
Will of Thomas Cotyer (1473)
Reference: CKS DR/b [...........]
In the name of God, Amen. The 3rd day of the month of September in the year of Our Lord 1473. I Thomas Cotyer of the parish of Hertele in the county of Kent, in the diocese of Rochester, of sound mind and memory, make my will in this manner. Firstly I commend my soul to Almighty God etc., and my body to buried in the churchyard of the parish Church of All Saints of Hertele. Item: I leave to the high altar of the said Church for tithes forgot - 20d. Item: I leave to the light of the Blessed Mary there - 12d. Item: I leave to the light of St Cross there - 6d. Item: I lave to purchase a mew missal for the use of the said Church - 3s 4d. Item: I leave for the building of a butress for the said Church - 3s 4d. Item: I leave to the said Church - one torch worth 6s 8d. Item: I leave to the Friars of Aylisford - 2s 6d to pray for my soul. Item: I leave to three priests praying and celebrating in the said Church on the day of my trental, to each of them - 4d with a meal. Item: I leave to Thomas and Philip Godfury, my godsons, sons of Walter Godfury, to each of them - one brazen pot, excepting the best. Item: I leave to son John, my godson - 12d. The remainder of all my goods not bequeathed after debts and legacies have been paid, I leave to Rose my wife for the term of her life. Item: I ordain and appoint William Hoke as my executor...
To his wife Rose, he leaves the rest of his goods and his lands, except the land called "Lome Pet" and "Veysys Grove". At her death they are to go to William Hoke and Jane his wife.
Will proved at Dartford on 28 March 1474 by William Hooke executor, who makes fine of 2s. (Kent Archives DRb/Pa4 fo 25)
Will of Thomas Cotyer of Dartford, 1504
Reference: TNA PROB11
In the name of God Amen. The 17th day of September in the year of our Lord God 1504. I Thomas Cotyer of Dertforde, being in good mind make my testament in this matter following. First I bequeath my soul to Almighty God, to our Lady St Mary and to all the company of heaven, my body to be buried in the parish church of Dertforde before the image of St Nicholas. Item: I bequeath to the high altar of Dartford for tithes forgotten or wrongfully forgotten 6s 8d. I bequeath to St Thomas's alter in the same church [to buy?] anything that is most needful about the altar - 10s. I bequeath to the Friars Augustines at London to a trental of masses for my soul - 5s and .......? Item: I bequeath to the bretheren of Papper in London - 3s 6d. Item: I bequeath to the church of Hertley - a torch 6s 8s or else 6s 8d for it. Item: I bequest to the church priest of this Stanpittysse? to pray for my soul - 6s 8d. Item: I bequeath to every frere in the abbey of Dartforde to pray for my soul - 8d. Item: I bequeath to every godson that I have and goddaughter - 4d. Item: I bequeath to Rose my daughter to her marriage in money and stuff after the discretion of my wife. The residue of all my goods, my debts paid, my bequests fulfilled, I give unto Margery my wife, the which Margery and Thomas Weymer I make my executors, and I make Mr Victor of Dertforde my overseer, the which I bequeath for to pray for me - 3s 4d.
This is the last will of me the above written Thomas, made the day and year aforesaid, of and upon the disposition of all my lands and tenements being within the parishes of Hertley and Dertford, or else where in the shire of Kent. First: I will that Margery my wife have all my said lands and tenements term of her life. And after the decease of my wife, I will that Peter my son have all my lands in the parish of Hertley, and Francis my son all that I have in the parish of Dertforde. And if so be the foresaid Peter die without any issue, I will that it remain unto Francis my son, and his heirs, and if he die without any issue, I will that mine executors have the disposition for the health of my soul as they think fit.
Proved at London 17 July 1504.
Will of Peter Cotyer of Dertforde (1528)
Reference: CKS DRb PWr 8/132b
In the name of God Amen. The 13th day of January in the year of Our Lord 1527 and the 19th year of King Henry the Eighth (1528). I Peter Cotyar of Dertford, whole in mind, make my testament this wise. First I bequeath my soul to the Holy Trinity, my body to be buried before St Thomas's altar in the parish Church of Dertforde. Item: I give to the high altar of my parish church - 20d. Also I give to Elizabeth my wife, my cache with all my moveables. Also I give to Mary Cotiar my daughter, my part of the "skaye" that is betwixte Holbek and me. Also I give to Mary my daughter all my lands that I did purchase in the parish of Hartly, and to her heirs of her body lawfully begotten. And for lack of issue of the said Mary, I will that Thomas Cotyar my son shall have the said land to him and his heirs of his body lawfully begotten. And if it fortune the said Mary and Thomas to die without issue before Margery Cotyar my mother. Then I will that she shall have the land for term of her life, and then to return to the next heir. The residue of all my goods, my debts and legacies paid, I give to Elizabeth my wife, whom I make my sole executrix. And I make Thomas Larke, citizen of London, supervisor of this my last will, and he to have for his labour - 6s 8d. Witnesses hereof, Sir Robert Johnson, clerk, Thomas Haslelen, Walter Yffelde with other.