Page from the Weld Estate sale prospectus
For its whole history up to 1925, the bulk of the Manor of Sutton Poyntz (which included the villages of Preston and Sutton Poyntz) was owned by a succession of Lords of the Manor - who these people were is dealt with below. In 1925, the Weld family at Lulworth Castle, who were then Lords of the Manor, decided to sell up the whole manor, in lots. This event was possibly the most significant in the whole history of the village. Most of the lots were bought by the sitting tenants. Several of these tenants then sold off parts of their new land-holdings for development. Thus began the expansion of the village out from its medieval core, mainly to the north-west (up Plaisters Lane) and to the south (along Sutton Road).
At this time, Sutton Poyntz was still very much an agricultural centre, based now on a mix of farming and market gardening. A survey in 1933 by Weymouth Borough Council, when they took over when Weymouth Rural District was disbanded, concluded that a large number of the agricultural workers' homes in the village were slums. There was no mains drainage until the 1950's - the Medical Health Officer commented against a planning application in 1945, saying that waste water arrangements were lacking, and the stream was already highly polluted. Sutton Poyntz was not then a rural 'idyll'.
But the expansion of the village that started after 1925 was the beginning of the "gentrification" of the village, that has completely changed its character, ending its close historical connection with agriculture.