Orcheyerd, William (DNB00)
ORCHEYERD or ORCHARD, WILLIAM (d. 1504), mason and architect, was in September 1475 described as a freemason of Oxford. At that date Bishop Wayneflete of Winchester, who was superintending the building of Magdalen College, Oxford, engaged Orcheyerd to make the great west window of the chapel, in seven lights, according to a ‘portraiture’ prepared by Orcheyerd, for twenty marks. He was also to provide forty-eight cloister windows with buttresses, at 48s. 4d. for each window and buttress; twelve doors for chambers, and one hundred and two windows, as good as, or better than, the windows in the chambers of All Souls College, at 6s. 8d. each; and the windows of the library, each with two lights, with like reference to those of All Souls College, at 13s. 4d. each. This work was completed in 1477–8, in which years Orcheyerd acknowledged payment. In 1479 two further agreements were made for battlements and buttresses for Magdalen College chapel, hall, library, gateway tower, and cloister tower, with a staircase turret, called a ‘vyse,’ to the latter, and pinnacles, the spire for the turret to be 16 feet high, and the pinnacles 11½ feet; the spire to cost nine marks, and the pinnacles 11s. 1d. each. The stone was to be dug from the quarries belonging to the king and to the college at Headington, near Oxford. Orcheyerd was engaged at the same time upon work at Eton for Wayneflete, it being provided that the stone should be procured for that work from the same quarries. The satisfaction which his work gave is evidenced by the fact of the college leasing to him for fifty-nine years in 1478 some land at Barton, a hamlet of Headington, where their quarry was situated. This lease was, in 1486, converted into one for twenty years, should he live so long, with addition of other land. In the later lease he is described as ‘commonly called Master William Mason.’ In 1490 as ‘William Orchard, esquire,’ he leased out some of his land for five years; and in 1501, as ‘Master W. Mason,’ granted another lease. From a document dated 13 Feb. 1502–3, which is entered in the register of the university marked ¶, at f. 189, it appears that he was then engaged upon buildings at St. Bernard's College, for which he had made an agreement with the abbot of Fountains [called Funteys, i.e. Fontes, miscopied as Freynties in Wood's ‘Antiquities of the City of Oxford,’ 1890, ii. 309] for two years and a half from Whitsuntide 1502; he procured the entry in this register of the agreement with respect to the digging the foundations and quarrying the stone, owing apparently to some dispute. But in 1504 he died. His will, which is entered in the above-mentioned university register, at fol. 65 b, dated 21 Jan. 1503–4, was proved 13 March. He directed his body to be buried in the church of the priory of St. Frideswide, and bequeathed to the priory his house in Crampolle (Grandpool or Grandpont) after the death of his wife Katherine, to whom he left all the residue of his property, providing for masses for his soul at St. Frideswide's and Magdalen College, and securing to the college an annual payment for ever from the priory of 6s. 8d. His elder son, John Orchard, who took the degree of B.C.L., sold some of the Headington property in 1513. A portion of the rest was given in dowry with his daughter Isabella (al. Elizabeth) on her marriage to Edward Mawdisley, a tailor, of Oxford, about 1490. She subsequently married Harry Oldame of Oxford, and died before September 1513. John Orchard was a brewer in Oxford in 1505 (Univ. Reg. as above, f. 230 b).
[Deeds in Magd. Coll. Muniment Room, Miscell., No. 349, Headington, Nos. 2, 3, 35, 39, 42, 71, 15a, 16a, 18a.]