THURGRIM, Richard (d.1396), of Thorndon (near Pershore), Worcs.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1386-1421, ed. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark, C. Rawcliffe., 1993
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

m. bef. 1382, 1s. 1da.

Offices Held

Commr. of arrest, Glos. Feb. 1386; inquiry Mar. 1388 (trespass), Worcs. June 1388 (enforcement of the assize of wines); array Mar. 1392; to hold special assizes, Glos. May 1394, Jan. 1396

Escheator, Worcs. 30 Nov. 1387-8.

J.p. Worcs. 28 June-Dec. 1390, 18 June 1394-d.

Alnager, Worcs. 20 July 1394-30 Nov. 1395.


Little is known about this MP’s background, although he may have been related to the Thurgrims who sat for Hereford earlier in the 14th century (a supposition supported by his occasional appearances in connexion with men from Herefordshire). He acquired property in Fladbury, Worcestershire, in 1379, and within ten years had also come into possession of the manor of Thorndon. His other holdings were situated in Worcester and at Wolverton.1

In 1375 Thurgrim had been named by John Beauchamp of Holt as a feoffee of certain properties in Worcestershire for the foundation of a chantry after his death. Not long afterwards he began an association with Henry Wakefield, bishop of Worcester, which was to last for 20 years. In 1377 he stood surety for Wakefield at the Exchequer when he was granted the farm of the alien priory of Frampton, Dorset, and that same year the bishop awarded him for life an annual rent of 18s.8d. together with a messuage, 70 acres of arable land and three acres of meadow in Wick Episcopi, which properties were to become his in fee simple just a year later. Thurgrim was named as Wakefield’s proxy in the Parliament of 1384 (Nov.). His earliest royal commissions concerned matters in Gloucestershire, but it was as escheator of Worcestershire in 1388 that he was required to hold extensive inquiries into the possessions of those condemned in the Merciless Parliament, including the property of his former associate, Beauchamp of Holt. This entailed revealing that Beauchamp had occupied a house in High Street, Worcester, as his own tenant. In June he was instructed to arrange for the sale of the forfeited goods and chattels within his bailiwick and to answer at the Exchequer for the proceeds, although a few weeks later he was ordered, as regards Beauchamp’s moveables, to deliver them to the sheriff for surrender to the King’s Council. Perhaps his earlier friendly relations with the deceased made him reluctant to carry out this task: in September he had to be forced under a penalty of £1,000 to come to Westminster to content the Council for all that pertained to the Crown of the forfeitures.2

Nevertheless, Thurgrim himself benefited to a small extent from the confiscations: in January 1389 he obtained a short lease on the property in which he himself had been Beauchamp’s feoffee; and in the following month he purchased for 20 marks premises in Worcester similarly forfeited by this erstwhile associate. Thurgrim served on the Worcestershire bench for a few months in 1390 and was re-appointed escheator on 12 Dec., although this time he never exercised the office, allegedly because the letters patent failed to reach him. During 1391 and 1392 he was closely involved in the negotiations for a settlement of the dispute between Bishop Wakefield and the prior of Worcester over the latter’s use of episcopal insignia as permitted him by papal indult. When the bishop made his will on 10 Mar. 1395 he named Thurgrim and the latter’s son-in-law, Thomas Hodyngton*, among his executors, and three days later Thurgrim shared a grant of the guardianship of the temporalities of the see during the vacancy caused by Wakefield’s death. In June he and his fellow executors obtained a royal pardon (after paying a fine of £100) of the considerable sums demanded from them at the Exchequer as still owing from the time of Bishop Lenn’s episcopacy.3

Meanwhile, Thurgrim had been elected to his only Parliament, in 1394, and after the close of the session had occupied the post of alnager of Worcestershire for a year. He had earlier acted as a feoffee of estates in Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire apparently belonging to Richard, Lord Scrope of Bolton, and it seems likely that there was an even closer personal connexion between the two men, for on 12 Oct. 1396, shortly after Thurgrim’s death, Scrope was given custody of two-thirds of his property during the minority of his son, Thomas, together with the latter’s marriage. However, a year later both wardship and marriage were granted instead to the bishop of Worcester. The MP was probably buried in Holy Cross church at Pershore, where a chantry was later known as ‘Richard Thurgrim’s chapel’. His son evidently died childless, for in 1427 his daughter Joan, then widow of Thomas Hodyngton and calling herself Thurgrim’s heir, sold his lands in Thorndon and Wolverton to the lawyer, John Throckmorton*.4

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: L. S. Woodger


  • 1. VCH Worcs. iv. 158; CP25(1)260/25/2, 4; CCR, 1377-81, p. 364.
  • 2. CAD, iv. A9774; CFR, ix. 48; x. 229; CPR, 1377-81, pp. 76, 290; 1385-9, p. 544; CCR, 1385-9, p. 533; SC10/35/1743; CIMisc. v. 153-61.
  • 3. CFR, x. 277; xi. 146; CPR, 1388-92, pp. 10, 142; 1391-6, p. 596; CCR, 1392-6, p. 80; Reg. Wakefield (Worcs. Hist. Soc. n.s. vii), p. xlv, nos. 680, 681, 683; VCH Worcs. iii. 409.
  • 4. CCR, 1392-6, p. 123; CFR, xi. 195; E364/34 m. Ad; CPR, 1396-9, p. 275; VCH Worcs. iv. 163; Misc. Gen. et Her. (ser. 5), vi. 240. The date of Thurgrim’s death is given in C136/95/52 as 5 Dec., but this is clearly an error.