Maps: Estates and Enclosures Records

Estate Maps

Maps showing the holdings of a particular landowner, which can be manors, parks or even just fields.  Mostly dating from the 18th and 19th Centuries, they were not official maps and are not always reliable.


Enclosure Maps

The CAO has original enclosure maps for the whole of Powys (c1790s- 1860s).  An enclosure map shows the plan for how large fields which has been unchanged since the Middle Ages (comprising various strips of land cultivated by different farmers and the common or waste-lands) were to be brought together in a more efficient pattern for each farmer to manage.  In some cases this had already been done, but where farmers did not agree The Enclosure Act of 1760 compelled them to do so. 

Surveyors were appointed to redistribute the arrangement of fields and common land.  Enclosure maps come in two sections: there is a map showing each field, and an award of common grazing land, which indicates the name of each field, its size, who owned it before the enclosure award, and the name of the new owner. 

Most enclosure maps do not show the pre-existing field systems, and are patchy in their coverage, as they were only drawn up for areas where the old field systems and commons existed.

Enclosure maps form part of the Quarter Sessions Records.

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