COCKFIELD, Sir Robert, of Nuthall, Notts. and East Tuddenham, Norf.
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Family and Education
s. and h. of Sir Thomas Cockfield (d. by 1381) of Nuthall and East Tuddenham. m. ?Cecily, da. and h. of Robert Charnels, 1s. 1da. Kntd. by Sept. 1388.1
Commr. of inquiry, Notts. Feb., June 1390 (obstruction of the river Trent); array Mar. 1392.
Sir Robert’s forebears claimed their descent from Roger, a younger brother of Aubrey de Vere (ancestor of the earls of Oxford), who was rewarded by William the Conqueror with the lordship of Cockfield in Suffolk. They acquired their estates at Nuthall during the reign of King John, and later, in the 1260s, by a double marriage into the Constable family, they became the owners of two manors and extensive holdings in East Tuddenham and Melton Constable. Sir Robert had succeeded his father by 1381, when he held court on his Norfolk properties, although he appears to have spent most of his time in Nottinghamshire, which county twice returned him to Parliament, and where he enjoyed a landed income of at least £20 a year. Notwithstanding his evident wealth and social position, he remains an obscure figure about whom little else is known. In February 1411, not long before his death, he arraigned two local men on an assize of novel disseisin at Nottingham, claiming that they had withheld rents worth £6 18s. from him as tenants of his property in Bateford. He and his son, John (who then acted as his attorney), won their case, but the defendants still refused to pay, and in July 1413 orders were issued for their arrest. Sir Robert died at some point before 1417 and was succeeded by John, who married a daughter of the Derbyshire landowner, Thomas Foljambe*. Since the couple left no heirs, the Cockfield estates passed to John’s sister, Agnes, the wife of John Tailboys of Lincolnshire.2
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Variants: Cokefield, Kokefeld.