Heron and Roubiri denied that they had ever taken a large coffer to
Warkworth at all, or that the money in question had anything to do with
Cressingham. They swore that it was deposited at Warkworth before his
death. According to Heron, it was a sum of £281 which he had received
from the issues of the coket at Berwick ; and which, when the Scots rose
against the king and slew the sheriff of Lanark, he put, for fear of
them, into two leather bags and two pouches, and, by Hugh de Roubiri's
advice, sent them to Warkworth castle about the 15th of August, 1297. He
there delivered them himself to Roubiri, who placed them in the treasury
of the castle under the custody of the constable. Roubiri's evidence
bore this out, with the slight discrepancy
that he said he received the bags, and two canvas pouches strapped
together, about the gule (the 1st) of August. Immediately after
Cressingham's death, for fear of the Scots, the carried the two leather
bags to Durham castle. Roger Heron acknowledged that he received them
there from Roubiri as he was returning to Scotland with the English
barons who had been summoned to quell the insurrection. They contained
£200, half of which he paid to Walter de Agmondesham for the king's
business, and half by tallies to the treasurer at York. What became of
the two pouches and the remaining £81, Heron could not tell. Roubiri
deposed that he hid these pouches, which he understood contained only 35
marks, with some of his own jewels in a sack of his wool at Warkworth.
Pouches, silver, jewels, and wool he never saw again, for the keepers of
the castle and Robert fitz Roger when he came there sold the wool and
carried off the valuables.
Robert fitz Roger had been at Warkworth on the Thursday after the
feast of St. Mary Magdalen (22nd July), 1304, when, in the presence of
Sir John de Swyneburne, Sir Roger Corbet, Sir John de Vaux, John de Eure,
John de Lisle (of Woodburn), and John de Normanville, he set his seal to
an agreement with Lucia the widow of Thomas de Dyvelston respecting
boats crossing the water of Tyne at Corbridge.
N He allowed the constable at Warkworth the herbage of the
castle and its precincts, which covered then, as now, about an acre and
LN His goods in the castle of Warkworth were returned as of
the value of £8 12s. 2d. in the Subsidy Roll of 1312.
LN He was one of the six barons appointed ordainers, 25th
N and died very soon afterwards.
John fitz Robert, who had been summoned to parliament as John
de Clavering in 1299, did homage for his father's lands, 29th March,
N The next year (10th November,
1311), he made a compact with Edward II. that, in consideration of his
being granted for life the manor of Costessey and other lands in
Norfolk, Suffolk, and Northamptonshire, his castle of Warkworth and the
manors of Rothbury in Northumberland and Eure in Buckinghamshire should,
on his death, become the property of the king or his heirs ; as should
also his manors of Newburn and Corbridge, in the event of his leaving no
legitimate male issue.
N On the same day John de Clavering obtained a licence to
grant in fee his manor of Whalton to Geoffrey le Scrope.
The long continuance of the Scottish wars made it
expedient that the king should have the castles of Northumberland under
his immediate control. This was attained, to a certain extent, by his
furnishing a portion of their garrisons. In a safe-conduct for John le
Irish de Hibernia, dated at York 15th August, 1314, Edward II. provides
that were the Irishman close pressed by the Scots the constable of
Warkworth, if certain no fraud was intended, should receive him into the
N His debts appear to have been the cause of Clavering's ruin.
On the 1st of May, 1317, he acknowledged that he owed the then vast sum
of £600 to Fredulcius Hubertini, merchant of Lucca, the executor of
Donus de Podio of that town, and charged his land and chattels with that
At the close of Gilbert de Middleton's
rebellion in 1317, the loyal garrison of Warkworth, in conjunction with
those of Alnwick and Bamburgh, reduced the peles of Bolton and
N The agreement entered into with John de Crumbwell and Robert
d'Umframvill, earl of Angus, as wardens of the March of Northumberland,
in September, 1319, mentions that the castle of Warkworth had its own
garrison of 12 men-at-arms, and that the king would place in it at his
own cost 4 men-at-arms and 8 hoblers or light horsemen, to be chosen by
Robert Darreys and John de Thirlewall.
LN In 1322 Robert Darreys, constable of Warkworth, is said to
have contributed 26 hoblers from the garrison for the king's expedition
to Scotland ;N
but on the 26th of September in that year Ralph de Neville, as
constable, was severely reprimanded by Edward II. for neglecting a
favourable opportunity of attacking the Scots.
On the 26th of June, 1323, John de Clavering was ordered to
cause Warkworth to be provisioned and safely guarded, as the king wished
the castles on the Marches of Scotland to be well sustained
notwithstanding the conclusion of the truce.
N On August 2nd, 1326, he was commanded to repair to the
N In June, 1327, Ralph de Neville received £157 7s. 6d. for
his wages and the wages of the men-at-arms and hoblers whom he had
retained in the service of Edward II. when he was constable of
After their hasty retreat from Stanhope park in
the early part of August, 1327, the Scots, having failed to surprise
Alnwick, laid siege to Warkworth. Several of them perished in the
attack, and the rest, disappointed of their purpose, set off home.
LN Towards the end of the year, however, while Edward III. was
absorbed in preparing for his marriage with Philippa of Hainault, Robert
Bruce entered Northumberland with a large army and invested Alnwick,
Warkworth, and other castles. But though these set sieges were followed
by frequent irregular attacks, the garrisons made a successful
LN In their alarm, the inhabitants of the bishopric of Durham,
`the county of Carlisle,' Richmondshire, Cleveland, and Westmoreland
bought for a large sum a truce with the Scots till the following Easter.
Before this term expired, the Treaty of Edinburgh, in which Edward III.
renounced his claims over Scotland, was concluded on the 17th of March,
1328. Sir Geoffrey le Scrope, one of the English envoys, had broken his
journey at Warkworth on the night of Sunday, the 6th of March, and on
Monday, the 7th, William le Zouch, another of them, had arrived there.
Edward III., on the 2nd of March, 1328, had made over his reversionary
interest in Warkworth and the other northern estates of John de
Clavering to the second Henry Percy of Alnwick, in lieu of the
hereditary custody of Berwick and an annuity of 500 marks out of the
customs of that port which had been granted to Percy during peace or war
providing he served the king for life with a certain number of
men-at-arms ; but if the issues of the
castle and lands exceeded the 500 marks Percy was to account for the
LN On the 6th of August following, the king, being at York,
made a grant to Percy of the yearly rent of 500 marks due from him for
the custody of the lands of the heirs of Robert le Fitz Wauter, in lieu
of the like sum due to him for his fee for his stay with the king, but
if the Clavering reversion fell in this abatement was to cease.
N John de Clavering did die without male issue, on the 18th of
N and Warkworth, with its castles and dependencies, carne into
the Percy family. The barony of Robert fitz Roger, indicated by the writ
of 28th June, 1283, and that of Clavering, created by the writ of 29th
December, 1299, both passed to his daughter Eve, wife of James de
Audeley, and fell into abeyance among her descendants.
The Scots appear to have burnt and sacked the
town of Warkworth just before the relief of Wark in 1341.
N In 1335 the constable and his lieutenant received orders
from Edward III., dated Berwick, October the 10th, to release Adam Skele
and Nicholas Betteson, men of that town, who had been committed to their
custody on suspicion of treason.
Henry the Strong, the first Percy of Warkworth,
died there unexpectedly on the 27th of February, 1352, after having been
detained by a short illness.
N The jury of inquest empannelled at Alnwick on the 21st of
March, before John de Coupland, as escheator of Northumberland, returned
the buildings in the castle of Warkworth as of no value beyond the cost
of repairing them. The herbage of the moat was worth 18d. a year, and
was let for that sum.
The succeeding lord, Henry Percy the Short, conferred at Warkworth
various privileges on the Carmelites of Hulne, at the instance of their
prior, Robert de Populton, on the feast of the Annunciation (25th
March), 1364. Sir Richard Tempest, Sir Thomas Surtees, Sir Ingram
Umframvill, and others were there at the time.
L This lord, too, died at Warkworth on Ascension day, the 18th
of May, 1368, at five o'clock in the afternoon—proof that the castle had
become a favourite residence of the Percies.
LN The inquisition taken at Newcastle as to the lands he left,
again states that the castle of Warkworth was worth nothing over and
above the expense of keeping it in repair ; the annual value of the
herbage of the moat had fallen to 12d.
On setting out for the wars in France in 1373, Henry Percy,
the next lord, ratified the charters of Alnwick abbey, at his castle of
Warkworth, on the 19th of June, in the presence of Sir William de
Aldburgh, Sir Richard Tempest, Sir Ingram Umframvill, Sir Robert
Clavering, Sir John Heron, and Sir William Claxton.
LN Created earl of Northumberland at the coronation of Richard
II. in 1377, he practically placed Henry Bolingbroke on the throne.
On the 14th of September, 1402, he obtained a great victory
over the Scots at Homildon, near Wooler. With the view, apparently, of
securing a more lasting peace with Scotland, Henry IV. gave orders that
none of the prisoners taken at this battle should be ransomed. At the
same time he promised their captors that they should not be losers by
this change in Border policy.
N After some remonstrance, Northumberland brought Murdoch
Stewart, son of the duke of Albany, and six other prisoners to London in
triumph on the 10th of October.
N He took this opportunity, it seems, of complaining that he
and his son, Henry Hotspur, had spent their all in the king's service
without receiving due payment for the custody of the Marches. With a
bare treasury, and no means of refilling it without imperilling his
crown, Henry could only reply, ` Aurum non habeo, aurum non habebis.'
The great earl of Douglas, who had yielded to Hotspur at Homildon, was
conspicuously absent from the pageant. The king required that he, too,
should be handed over. Instead, however, of complying, Hotspur sought an
audience and demanded that the king should ransom his brother-in-law,
Edmund Mortimer, who had been taken prisoner by the Welsh under
circumstances which, if not traitorous, were at any rate disgraceful.
Henry refused to allow any money to pass out of England to his enemies,
and declared that Mortimer was a traitor who had merely pretended to be
captured in order to join Owen Glendower. `And thou, too, art a
traitor,' he added, charging Hotspur with not seizing Glendower when he
had the opportunity, and drawing his dagger on him. Hotspur showed
remarkable self-control. Replying ` Not here, but in the field,
N to the king's assault,' he declared that his own honour
would not have permitted him to violate the safe-conduct given to Owen
at their meeting, and at once set out for Berwick.
The quarrel of the king with Hotspur does not appear to have
interfered with his good relations with Northumberland. On March 2nd,
1403, he bestowed on him the greater part of the south of Scotland,
which was therewith declared to have been conquered and annexed to
England. The king, no doubt, considered that a grant of this princely
character would also settle any financial grievances the Percies had
against him. Hotspur seems, however, not to have been content with the
fertile territory already subdued. He resolved to overrun the whole
country as far as the Firth of Forth, demolishing the fortresses, and
systematically burning and destroying all before him ;
N but when he appeared before the little tower of Cocklaw,
near Hawick, in the upper part of Teviotdale, which belonged to James
N the captain, John Greenlaw, refused to give it up, and after
some show of a siege, an entire suspension of hostilities was agreed to
in May, with the stipulation that the garrison would surrender on the
1st of August if they did not previously receive succour from the
Scottish government. Hotspur's professed object in agreeing to these
terms was to provoke the Scots to a pitched battle more disastrous than
On the 30th of May, the earl of Northumberland wrote to the
council from Newcastle-upon-Tyne informing them that he and Hotspur had
bound themselves by an indenture to be at Ormiston on the 1st of August,
in order to receive possession of the castle if it were not delivered by
battle on that day.
N He asked for their good offices in obtaining payment from
the king, so that he might know by the 24th of June on what support he
had to reckon. Instead of the money, he appears to have then received
letters from Henry, in which the king first said that he considered the
Percies would be sufficiently strong at the appointed tryst at Ormiston
without any assistance from him, and then recollecting the great expense
this was likely to cause them, told the earl he had given orders to send
him in all haste a certain sum of money. Two days later Northumberland
replied with the demand of £20,000 as the balance of arrears due to
himself and Hotspur.
N Henry was utterly unable to provide such a sum, but he
resolved to do all he could by marching in person to the assistance of
the Percies. The earl in vain endeavoured to dissuade him from this
L On the 10th of
July the king
was at Highain Ferrars, in Northamptonshire. He there ordered the
council to despatch £1,000 to his eldest son, Prince Henry, who, after a
successful raid into Owen Glendower's country, found himself in great
pecuniary straits at Shrewsbury. At the same time he declared himself
resolved to adhere to his purpose of proceeding to Scotland to there
give all aid possible 'to his very dear and faithful cousins, the earl
of Northumberland, and Henry, his son, at the battle honourably
undertaken by them for him and his kingdom against the Scots, his
Meanwhile, however, a most formidable
conspiracy against the unsuspecting king had been woven within the walls
of Warkworth. Under the pretence of enlisting the services of the
English nobility for the exploit of Ormiston, the Percies had entered
into long correspondence with all of them.
N At first they
were careful not to commit themselves too far; the most they aimed at
was to be self-defence and the removal of the king's evil counsellors ;
but in the end all these lords, with the exception of the earl of
Stafford, bound themselves by their seals to support the Percy schemes
in the field. Hotspur entrusted their letters to the custody of his
squire, John Hardyng, who had been with him at Homildon and Ormiston ;
and when, in the beginning of July, they rode away with eight score
horsemen to Chester, Hardyng seems to have deposited the letters in some
secret corner of Warkworth castle.
N It was not until the
17th of July that the king, at Burton-on-Trent, perceived the imminent
danger he was in. At once he ordered a general levy to resist Hotspur,
but in doing so confidently declared that by the mercy of God he felt
himself strong enough to resist all the enemies of his crown and person.
N The battle of Shrewsbury, fought on Saturday, the 21st of July,
1403, proved that this confidence was not misplaced.
On the following Monday the earl of
Northumberland was at last hastening to Hotspur's assistance, when,
finding himself confronted by the levies of the earl of Westmorland, he
led back the considerable force he had collected to Newcastle.
N On the
news of Hotspur's death at Shrewsbury, the earl disbanded his army and
withdrew with the members of his household to Warkworth castle.
LN There, it would appear, he received a letter from Henry IV.
promising to receive him again into favour if he would peacefully
present himself at York.
But though the promise of his life and an
honourable maintenance was renewed, the earl found himself arrested, was
forced to agree that his four castles of Alnwick, Warkworth, Prudhoe,
and Langley should be placed by the king in 'saveguard and good governance,' and was himself
thrown into prison at Baginton, a castle situated between Kenilworth and
Under circumstances such as these it is not to be wondered that his
grandsons and retainers resolved to hold the castles in question.
To tyme the king had graunt hym plener grace.
The 'survey and governance' of all the earl's possessions in the north
were entrusted by the king to William Heron, Lord Say.
N He presided at a
council held in Durham abbey,
N when it was decided, among other similar
measures, that Sir Henry Percy of Athole, the earl's grandson, Richard
Aske, and John Cresswell the constable, should be called on to surrender
Warkworth castle to Sir John Mitford, sheriff of Northumberland.
therefore, proceeded to Warkworth in company with Thomas Nevill, Lord
Furnival, brother of the earl of Westmorland, Sir Gerard Heron, and Sir
John Mitford, and summoned Sir Henry Percy to evacuate the castle,
and repair to the royal presence. Sir Henry, who could not have
been more than fourteen,
N declared himself ever ready to obey his sovereign's behests
provided he were properly armed and accoutred, but this, unfortunately,
was not then the case. To deprive him of this excuse, the Lords Furnival
and Say applied to John Wyndale, the chaplain of Alnwick castle, and to
the 'wardroper' there, to furnish Sir Henry with beds suited to his
rank, and vessels of silver, armour, and horses.
LN This Wyndale and the wardrober refused to do, unless they
received a warrant to that effect from the earl. In the end, the two
lords, to make the best of a bad business, persuaded Sir Henry Percy to
swear on the altar that he would be faithful to the king, and that
Warkworth should be well guarded. The constable, John Cresswell, proved
equally intractable. The ward of the castle, he maintained, had been
granted him for his life by the earl under indenture. The most that
could be extorted from him was an oath to keep the castle loyally for
the use and profit of both king and earl.
Henry IV. was at this time (10th September to 2nd October,
1403) in Wales.
N Lord Say turned back from Warkworth, bearing a despatch to
the king from Lord Furnival relating the facts just stated,
N and he was also entrusted with one from the earl of
Westmorland. 'The castles of Alnwick and Warkworth,' wrote Westmorland,
'as well as other " fortelettes " in those parts have not yet been
reduced to a proper state of submission. The king should come north
himself after his arrival from Wales. It would be well if, in the
meantime, he would send north by sea siege-engines, cannon, artillery,
and other things necessary for storming these castles, both as a terror
to the disobedient, and for use in case of emergency.'
As want of funds was causing
the Welsh expedition to end in failure, it was not very likely that
Henry IV. would be able to follow Westrnorland's advice. In this
difficulty it occurred to Lord Say that he might procure the
pacification of the north by obtaining express orders from the earl of
Northumberland for the surrender of Warkworth and the other castles. He
travelled to Baginton, and there on the 13th of October, the earl, in
the highly suggestive presence of his seven gaolers, agreed with Lord
Say that he would send to London for his great seal in order to affix it
to 'everything that was pleasing to his sovereign lord the king.'
LN About the same time Lord Say submitted to the king and
council a schedule of letters and orders to be issued under `the great
seal of the arms of the earl of Northumberland.'
LN Sir Henry Percy and Richard Aske were to be commanded to
come to the king; Sir Thomas Anlaby and John Wyndale were to prepare
fitting apparel for Sir Henry Percy and to provide for the costs of his
journey ; John Aske was to ride to his brother Richard at Warkworth and
to persuade him to journey south in his company ; and Sir John Mitford
was to take over Warkworth castle, with the assurance that he would be
paid for the expense of guarding it. The earl's great seal was forwarded
to him from London by Richard Vaux, a special messenger, sometime before
the 9th of November,
N but the letters and orders if sealed by it were of little
use. On the 30th of November, Lord Furnival was instructed to open fresh
negotiations with the defenders of Warkworth, and on the 3rd of December
was empowered to receive the custody of it for the king.
N On the 6th of that month Henry IV. addressed a writ to Sir
Henry Percy commanding him, on his faith and allegiance and on the pain
of forfeiting everything he could forfeit, to at once deliver up the
castles of Alnwick and Warkworth to Lord Furnival, and, without further
excuse of any kind, to put in a personal
appearance at court.
LN Notwithstanding all which, on the 13th of January, 1404,
the castles of Berwick, Alnwick, and Warkworth were still held by main
force against the king by Sir William Clifford, Sir Henry Percy, and his
younger brother, Sir Thomas, who were distributing the 'livery of the
crescent' to the large forces they had collected.
LN The castles had not surrendered by the 25th of the month ;N
and in February the earl of Northumberland, having been acquitted of the
charge of treason by his peers, was, with diplomatic generosity,
restored by the king to his estates, even the fine he had incurred being
The earl brought his three grandsons to
Henry IV. at Pontefract in June, 1404,
N but his conduct continued to excite suspicion. He had but
recently arrived in Northumberland, when on Saturday, the 3rd of
January, 1405, he received letters from the king desiring his presence
at a council to be held at Westminster during the week after St.
Hilary's day (14th January). Instead of going, he replied from Warkworth
on the 12th of January, excusing himself on the grounds of having just
come home, of his great age and feebleness, and of the long and bad road
in winter time. He prayed God to grant `his very redoubtable sovereign
lord' an honoured life, joy, and health for long to come, and signed
himself `your humble Matathyas.'
He did attend a council at Westminster on March
22nd, but in the following May the earl, no longer caring to disguise
his opinions, seized the person of Robert Waterton, esquire, whom the
king had sent to him with a message, and
incarcerated him in the castle of Warkworth.
L He then joined the conspiracy of Archbishop Scrope, but, as
in the case of Hotspur's rebellion, suffered the insurgents to be
defeated before he brought up his promised levies.
At the head of an army of, it is said, 37,000 men, Henry IV.
marched into Northumberland in person. He brought with him every
conceivable engine of war, from the old-fashioned stone-casting
catapults to the newly-invented guns, one of the latter being so large
that, it was believed, no wall could withstand the missiles it hurled.
N The earl fled before him into Scotland, taking with him his
grandson Henry fitz Hotspur. After Prudhoe had fallen in the first
place, the royal host;
to Warkworth remeuid in great araye,
Wher the castell with in aweke was yolde
Vnto the kyng after assautes fell and sore ;
The casteleyns to passe free wher thei would,
With horse and harnes without chalenge more.
The castle was summoned from the royal headquarters at
Widdrington on the 27th of June, 1405 ;N
the capitulation took place on the 1st of July. The king, writing from
Warkworth on the following day to acquaint the Privy Council with his
success, states that the captain of the castle had announced his
determination to hold it for the earl, but that on the royal cannon
being brought up they worked such destruction that after the seventh
discharge the captain and others of his company cried 'mercy,' and
surrendered at discretion.
L The captain appears to have been John de Middelham, who had
been one of the defenders of Alnwick in 1403. With the rest of the
garrison he seems to have been accorded the honourable terms mentioned
by Hardyng, but in August, 1407, it was discovered that he had received
a letter from the earl of Northumberland, which he had communicated to
William de Alnewyk, canon of Alnwick abbey and vicar of Chatton, and he
was accordingly arrested and condemned to death. His confession that he
had transmitted the letter in question to William de Alnewyk led the
canon to flee for his life to the earl of Northumberland in Scotland,
where he remained for some time. A pardon was granted to Alnewyk in
L and he eventually became archdeacon of Salisbury and bishop
first of Norwich and then of Lincoln.
Henry IV. had in 1403 appointed his third son,
John, then a boy of fourteen, warden of the East March, and in 1405 he
bestowed on him the earl's forfeited baronies of Alnwick, Prudhoe, and
N Warkworth, though originally it had been granted to the earl
of Westmorland in the camp at Widdrington, N became the
headquarters of the young prince. To this period belong four letters
written by him at Warkworth, principally to complain of the defenceless
state of the Border in consequence of his being left without sufficient
N Nor can these complaints be deemed unreasonable when it is
remembered that he undertook the custody of the East March for very
considerably less than had been allowed to
LN and received payment with no greater regularity. In the
letter to the lords of the council, 'written in haste at Warkworth, the
28th day of December,' he states that he had actually pawned his silver
plate and his jewels for the preservation of Berwick and payment of his
N He was at Warkworth castle on the 1st of January, 1406, when
he confirmed there the privileges of Hulne priory by letters patent.
LN The castle was entrusted to the keeping of Sir Robert
Umframvill, sheriff of Northumberland, in the capacity of captain ; on
the 30th of May, 1406, the king directed him to restore to the prior and
convent of Durham the chapel of St. Mary Magdalen, which stood about
half a mile to the south of Warkworth, and had been held on lease by the
attainted earl of Northumberland.
N Sir Robert appointed John Hardyng to be constable under him
; and Hardyng was thus enabled to recover in the castle the letters
compromising the loyalty of nearly the whole peerage of England which
Hotspur had confided to his care before the battle of Shrewsbury.
N Subsequently, the castle would appear to have become the
property of the royal warden; as John of Lancaster dates his
confirmation of the Maudlins to Durham in 1413 'at our castle of
Warkworth on the twelfth day of May in the first year of the reign of my
very sovereign brother King Henry the Fifth.
Two years later, on the
21st of May, John Hull and William Chancellor received instructions from
the king to conduct Murdoch of Fife, the son of the duke of Albany, who
had been a prisoner in England ever since the battle of Homildon, to the
north for the purpose of exchanging him for Henry Percy, the son of
Hotspur, who had been left in Scotland by his grandfather, and letters
ordering them to receive Murdoch were written to the constable of
Warkworth and to Sir Robert Umframvill ;
N while on the 27th of July, 1415, Henry V., just before
setting sail for Honfleur and Agincourt, granted at Southampton an
annuity of 3,000 marks to his brother John, whom he had created duke of
Bedford, in compensation for the lands that he intended to restore to
Henry Percy. The exchange of Murdoch for Percy fell through, and it was
not until the 28th of February, 1416, that Lord Grey of Codnor and Sir
John Nevill received Percy at Berwick from the hands of Albany's agents.
N On the 18th of March following Henry Percy did homage to the
king in parliament, and was, he tells the prior of Durham, 'restored to
my name ' as earl of Northumberland.
N On the 14th of April an order was issued to the bailiffs and
farmers to admit him to the possession of all lands granted in tail to
his father or the earl his grandfather. That same year he was made
warden of the East March, and the castle of Warkworth seems to have
become his favourite home. Here he confirmed the rights of Hulne priory
on the 3rd of October, 1417, in a charter of which Sir Robert Umframvill
is the first witness ;L
and here his son, John Percy, was born on
St. Grimbald's day (8th July), 1418.N
In the Treasury of Durham are preserved five letters of this period
dated from Warkworth castle, though the years are unfortunately not
given. In one (6th March, 14 . . ) addressed 'To oure right dere and
with all oure hert enterly wele be lovede sire in god the lord prioure
of Duresme' the earl of Northumberland, having, as he says, previously
applied for 'licence and lefe ' unto his priest Sir John of Warmouth 'to
permutate with the vycar of Byllynghame,' offers `to be bonden with
other knyghtes and squyers' that Warmouth sall be of gude beryng unto'
the prior and all his tenants and parishioners.
N This letter not producing the desired effect, the earl wrote
again, this time to the prior and convent and in French, on the 11th of
N this second letter was supported by one of the same date
from his countess, who equally betrays her eagerness to have the vicar
of Billingham for chaplain in Warmouth's stead.
N Notwithstanding these importunities the exchange seems never
to have been effected. On the earl's second letter the seal of his
signet still remains bearing a lion sejant guardant, gorged with a
crescent, and the motto ie espoyr; that of the countess on
her letter has a sprig in flower enclosed in a crescent inscribed with
N Another time the earl (21st July, 14 .. ) informs the prior
and convent that his ` squier and cousin William Strother hath a son
whiche occupieth ye scoles at Oxenford called Henry Strother'
N his 'Sybman,' and asks `that unto some benefice' of their 'colacion'
they `woule vouchesave aftre ye preferment' of his ` clerk maistre
George Radcliff specially to have him recommended.'
N In the fifth of these Warkworth letters (15th August, 14 . .
) the earl requests that the bearer, John del Wardrobe, a poor and aged
man, may be presented to the first vacancy in the conventual almshouses
Warkworth next appears as the scene of more important negotiations.:
from it the bishop of Durham, William Alnewyk, and Lord Scrope write to
the king of Scots on the 23rd of August, 1425, respecting a
prolongation of the existing truce and Sir Robert Urframvill's mission
to his court.
In 1428 the earl of Northumberland granted the hospital of
St. Leonard at Alnwick to the abbot and canons there with the
reservation of an annual payment of 5 marks for his chantry recently
founded in his castle of Warkworth.
LN The will of William Stowe of Ripon, an old retainer of the
Percies, dated 1430, mentions his 'bed of red' and breastplate at
N Here, too, the earl confirmed on the 14th of September,
1441, the fishing rights given to Alnwick abbey by John de Vesci.
N The issues of the office of the provost of Birling were
assigned for the lord's works within the castle in 1442. Robert Davison,
the janitor, received 2d. a day in wages granted by the lord's letters
patent. John Brotherwyk received four pounds a year for celebrating
divine service in the castle chapel in 1443.
In 1448 Earl William of Douglas passed into
England on the 18th of July 'and did great scaith and brynt Werkworth.'
N On the 12th of October, 1450, the earl of Northumberland was
again at the castle and bestowed the advowson of the church of
Leckonfield on Alnwick abbey.
L The priors of Tynemouth and Brinkburn, Sir Robert Ogle, Sir
Henry Fenwick, Roger Thornton, William Bertram, Richard Albrough, and
John Cartington attested this last charter.