I am presently studying the population of the village of Great Horwood in north Buckinghamshire during the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries. Baynard was one of the most persistent surnames in the village, appearing constantly from 1279 (when the first record detailed enough to give the names of individual inhabitants was created - they had doubtless been there from a much earlier date) until the mid 16th century. They were peasants, seldom farming more than about 70 acres of land, and had the unenviable distinction of being the last unfree family in the village - from the early 15th century until the last of them died in the middle of the 16th they were the only inhabitants of Great Horwood who had not shaken off their serf status.
During that time many members of the family moved away from Great Horwood, to other villages in north Buckinghamshire and doubtless much further afield, no doubt often in order to escape the stigma of their villein status. If anyone traces their ancestry back to a Baynard in Great Horwood, or in a neighbouring village prior to 1600, I'd be interested to hear from them.
It would be best to contact me directly (click on my name above to get my email address), rather than just to post a Followup, as I don't plan to visit this website often.
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