FREPURS, John, of Bedford.
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Family and Education
Bailiff, Bedford 1423-4; mayor 1429-30, 1437-8, 1444-6
At the time of his first return to Parliament in 1417, Frepurs was one of the wealthiest men in Bedford, and was taxed accordingly. Not surprisingly, in view of his position, he was called upon to witness a number of deeds, both in his official capacity as bailiff and later mayor of the town, and also as a private person of some consequence. His activities as a mercer brought him into contact with merchants in other parts of England, most notably William Lynne, a citizen and grocer of London, whose will he helped to execute during the early 1420s. The burgesses of Bedford chose Frepurs as a spokesman during their dispute with the commonalty as a whole over the vexed question of liability for the payment of MPs’ expenses. The quarrel was finally settled at Westminster, in February 1425, by two justices of the court of common pleas, and a compromise solution was reached. Although he sat only twice in the House of Commons, Fepurs attested the indentures for the borough elections to at least 14 Parliaments between 1420 and 1450.
Bedford Town Hall, unnumbered lay subsidy roll, 1417; DDX67/71, 87; Beds. RO, DDW 23-24, 29; DDP 100/6/5; DDTW 11/58, 175, 346, 362-4; Cal. Letter Bk. London, K, 26; Ancient Chs. and Muns. Bedford (1895), no. 20; C219/12/4, 6, 13/2, 3, 4, 14/1, 2, 4, 5, 15/1, 4, 6, 7, 16/1.