William Vescy had lived at Whitby. He was a merchant and his forebears had tenanted the big house at Sleights. Even earlier, his ancestors may well have been the barons Vescy who were lords of Malton, Brompton and Alnwick in the 12th century. During the Middle ages, you were more likely to make money if you had it already.
William made his will in 1407. He left the Abbot of Whitby 26s 8d, and the monks in the great monastery on the east cliff another 26s 8d. Sleights came under Ugglebarnby chapel so he left 13s 4d to its building. The bridge between Ugglebanby and Sleights was given 6s 8d. Could that possibly be down in the bottom of Littlebeck.
His trade seems to have taken him far afield. Hewanted the road repaired between Tadcaster and York, and the bridge of Sutton near Elvington. His other bequests were unusual. There was three shillings for every anchorite and anchoress within the liberty of York city. There were seven deliveries of sea coal for the Whitby poor. Seven marks was available for a man to travel in his place to the shrine of St James of Compostella beyond the seas. Others were to make his pilgrimages with alms and expenses, to holy places at Lincoln, Walsingham, St Edmundsbury, Canterbury, Broxeholm, St Pauls London, Hayles, York, Beverley, Bridlington, Scarborough, Thorp Basset, and Whitby. Here was a man without heirs but much conscience.