Lichfield

Borough

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer

Elections

DateCandidate
1547WILLIAM LAYTON 1
 EDMUND TWYNEHO 2
by 23 Jan. 1552ALEXANDER WALKER vice Layton, deceased
1553 (Mar.)MARK WYRLEY
 WILLIAM FITZHERBERT
1553 (Oct.)SIR PHILIP DRAYCOTT
 JOHN GIFFARD
1554 (Apr.)HENRY VERNON
 JOHN TAYLOR II
1554 (Nov.)MARK WYRLEY
 THOMAS EDWARDS
1555THOMAS EDWARDS
 FRANCIS BULSTRODE
1558ROBERT WESTON
 RICHARD CUPPER

Main Article

Before the Reformation the city of Lichfield, with its shrine to St. Chad and its other cults, was a place of pilgrimage. It had few crafts but provided a market for the district. Deprived in 1547 of the means of self-government by the abolition of the guild of St. Mary and St. John the Baptist, the city availed itself of the help of Secretary Paget to achieve incorporation by letters patent of July 1548 as the bailiffs and citizens, with a governing body consisting of two bailiffs and 24 burgesses. In December 1553 Mary conferred on Lichfield the status of a county, ostensibly for its loyalty during the succession crisis. The manor belonged to the bishop, who in October 1548 leased it to the city for £50 a year. No civic records for the period survive.3

Lichfield had returned Members to several medieval Parliaments, but by 1547 it had not done so for nearly 200 years. Its restoration was almost certainly the work of Paget: the two original Members of the Parliament of 1547 were both dependants of his, and he was to control elections until his death in 1563. Richard Cupper was his receiver-general, Edmund Twyneho his surveyor, John Taylor one of his bailiffs and William Fitzherbert a lawyer in his service. Fitzherbert had property in the city but is not known to have resided there, as did the civilian Robert Weston and Mark Wyrley, one of the bailiffs; Weston may have been a