Signs of settlement here go back to at least the Bronze Age: there is a ring ditch to the north -- on our farm -- and two barrows to the east, with a Irone Age settlement at near by Burry Walls.
The Romans build their road from Uriconium (Wroxeter today) to Mediolanum (Whitchurch today) over part of our farm, and a small town - Rutunio - developed somewhere very close indeed to the current hall, but its exact location has been lost. In the Dark Ages the manor found itself on the frontier between Powys and Mercia, and legend places King Arthur close by at Hawkstone on at least one occasion.
The manor has been in continuous existence and occupation since before the Norman conquest. The first known owner being Britric the Saxon, son of Ætheldric, Ealdorman of Mercia. The Anglo Saxon chroniclers were not fans, describing him as "fleeting, ambitious and proud" and he was -- with his brother, Edric Streon – slain by King Cnut in London on Christmas Day 1017,
After the Conquest, the Normans constructed a mote and bailey castle: the site of which is still visible to the north east of Soulton Hall -- its remains are strikingly visible to this day, as shown in the video below:
At this time the manor of Soulton belonged to King's Chapel at Shrewsbury Castle, granted by the Earl of Shrewsbury.
The Castle Chapel transferred the manor to the Kynaston family sometime in the 11th century, and they in turn gave occupation to the de Soulton family. There was a dispute about this arrangement. which reached the kings courts at Westminster in the late 1200s. The lawyer for the plaintiffs, a man named Yvo, ended up with the manor, and became of the first MPs for the county.
The earliest surviving deed for the manner is dated 1399. Shortly after this a further deed survives, which addresses a boundary dispute, and rules (amusingly to modern ears) that: ''the boundary shall go from the bend in the river, to the pile of stones, to the damaged tree''.
By the thirteenth century Robert Corbett and his family were living at Soulton, which a fortified manor house on the site of the Norman castle, but sometime around 1420, the manor house on the moated site was burnt down. When the manor house was rebuilt it was moved to its current site, at first a classic three bay manor house was constructed. This was purchases in 1556 by Sir Roland Hill -- the 'first' protestant Lord Mayor of London (1549). He remodelled the hall and extended it to the building that can be seen today. In 1668, his descendant, Thomas Hill, High Sheriff of Shropshire and a friend of Samuel Pepys placed his marital coat of arms above the front door.
Soulton Brook was used by the Duke of Bridgewater to trial the creation of canals in the 18th century. A large collection of Victorian pictures survive, and you can view them in the video below – it is remarkable that many vistas are unaltered:
In the centuries since the stewardship of this quietly remarkable manor has continued peacefully.