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18 Augt 1715 Honest Will I perceive by yours of the 12th that you have not as yet heard anything from Mr Ridley about the division, here are very great Improvemts made here Yearly by divideing the commons my Neighbour Sr Tho Tankred [struck out: ‘told me’] has made a hundred pound a Year clear rent by the dividing of two commons, & I doubt not but a great advantage may be made to every tenant if they could agree about the division, give my most humbl Service & thank to Mr Bacon for his late kindness, am every well satisfy’d that Sr J[oh]n Delavall is not able to rase the money wch is due to me, so as soon as the 17 Xbr is past Mr Bacon shall have the first offer of it & may keep most of the moneys in his hand as long as he pleases I doubt not but to prevaile wth Mr Ward to go to Willimonswyke but it will be after he has got In his Corn, & shall not faile to give you notice what time he will be wth you, what moneys you have you may pay it to Mr Coulson, for I have desired him to receive it, faile not to write me the tents names, & what rents they pay, that has Recd any damage in their ground by cutting & leeding away the wood, it must certainly be but a tryfall they can desire, for so small damages so I soley refer it to your self knowing you can deal wth them much better than any other, my old acquaintance Mr Baron Montague goes their Northern Circuit, he dined wth me on Munday last in his way to Durham, I told him that all my ten.ts should waite on him, & conduct him to the boarders of Cumberland, he seemed to be mighty well pleased wth it, so besure you faile not to ordr all the ten.ts to attend you, & give my most hum[ble] Servi[c]e to both the judges & acqt them I sent my ten.ts to attend & waite on them to the boarders of Cumberland upon the receipt of this letter & also after you have waited on the judges give a line to Your assured Fr[iend]
Sir John Delaval 3rd Bt (1654-1729). Took over the Baronetcy in 1696 on the unexpected death of his elder brother. He did not inherit Seaton Delaval Hall as it was left to his brother’s wife in the will. He had to live in the Lodge. After he stood down as an MP in 1710, he suffered from mounting financial problems. The death of his sister-in-law in October 1713 led him to attempt to repossess Seaton Delaval and Hartley, but his attempts were resisted by the servants of her second husband, Sir Edward Blackett, 2nd Bt. Blackett’s resistance of Delaval’s claims stemmed from the failure of Delaval to pay the marriage portion of £8,000 which, by the terms of his deceased brother’s marriage settlement, was due to Delaval’s niece upon her marriage to Blackett’s son. The dispute led to a Chancery case in which Blackett was successful and was awarded £14,624 12s. 7d. (the original £8,000 plus interest).