GREENHAM, Sir Hugh (d.1408), of Ketton, Rutland and Maid's Moreton, Bucks.
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Family and Education
prob. s. of Nicholas Greenham† of Ketton. m. by Dec. 1384, Katherine, prob. da. and coh. of Richard Bayeux the younger of Upper Hardwick, Hunts., at least 2s. (1 d.v.p.). Kntd. between. Oct. 1387 and Nov. 1391.1
J.p. Rutland 10 Nov. 1389-d.
Commr. of array, Rutland Mar. 1392, June 1394, Dec. 1399, Sept. 1403; inquiry Feb. 1402, Feb. 1405 (claim by the dowager countess of Oxford to the manor of Market Overton); to prevent the spread of treasonous rumours May 1402.
Controller of a tax, Rutland Mar. 1404.
This MP came of a family which, having lived in Rutland for the best part of two centuries, was noted for its involvement in the business of local government. Although we cannot be absolutely sure about Sir Hugh’s parentage, it seems more than likely that both his father and grandfather represented the county in Parliament. If he was not the grandson of the Thomas Greenham† (d.1376), who served on at least three occasions as a shire knight, he was certainly one of his kinsmen, since by October 1387 he had taken possession of the latter’s manor of Ketton and was living there with his wife. Circumstantial evidence likewise suggests that Greenham married one of the daughters and coheirs of Richard Bayeux the younger, lord of the manor of Upper Hardwick. She and one of her sisters sold off their share of the property in 1386, however, and Greenham thus lost whatever interests his marriage might have brought him in this part of Huntingdonshire. The sale may in fact have been arranged to off-set the cost of a purchase made by the couple some two years before, when they bought some land in the Buckinghamshire village of Maid’s Moreton. This was held of the earls of Stafford, and at the time of Greenham’s death bore a valuation of about five marks a year.2
Very little evidence has survived to illuminate Greenham’s career, although he clearly possessed sufficient local influence to make several appearances as a royal commissioner. He was possibly related to the Master Hugh Greenham who spent part of the autumn of 1397 under arrest at Windsor castle, but save for the fact that both men had connexions with Rutland nothing more is known about their mutual affairs.3 Friendly relations were maintained with his neighbours, the Greens of Exton, and their kinsman, John Culpepper*, for whom he witnessed deeds at the turn of the century. He was also a friend of the Rutland MP, Sir Thomas Oudeby*, and, in September 1403, the two men acted together as feoffees-to-uses for another of the prolific Oudeby clan.4
Greenham died on 7 July 1408, while his grandson and heir, John, was still a minor. The crown servant, Hugh Mortimer*, became guardian of the boy and his estates, but did not long enjoy this potentially lucrative award. John himself died, aged only eight, in the following November; and it was thus that his uncle William, Greenham’s second son, became lord of the manor of Ketton.5
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Variants: Greneham, Grenham.