HOLCROFT, Sir John (by 1498-1560), of Holcroft, Lancs.

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



Nov. 1554

Family and Education

b. by 1498, 1st s. of John Holcroft of Holcroft by Margaret, da. of Hamnett Massey of Rixton; bro. of Sir Thomas. m. by 1519, Anne, da. of Ralph Standish of Standish, 7s. 6da. KB 20 Feb. 1547.1

Offices Held

J.p. Cheshire 1539-47, Lancs. by 1541-d.; jt. (with bro. Sir Thomas) receiver, lands formerly of Lenton priory, Notts. 1540-5; sheriff, Lancs. 1537-8, 1542-3, Cheshire 1541-2, 1546-7; commr. chantries, Cheshire, Lancs. and Chester 1546, Cheshire, Lancs. and Staffs. 1554, relief, Lancs. 1550, goods of churches and fraternities 1552; other commissions 1540-51; custos rot. Lancs. 2 Apr. 1547-d.2


Sir John Holcroft and his younger but more prominent brother Sir Thomas were the first of their family to emerge from comparative obscurity. As the date of their father’s death is not known, the John Holcroft who joined the 3rd Earl of Derby with 53 men in 1536 may have been the father or the son, but it was the son who as Sir John Holcroft was joint commissioner for the musters on the Scots campaign of 1547 with George Blagge: he had been knighted at the coronation of Edward VI, being one of those who would have been created Knights of the Bath if there had been time for the ceremonies and who are usually regarded as such. His own son, another John, was knighted by the Protector Somerset at Roxburgh. In 1557 Sir John Holcroft or his son— it had not been decided or was not known which when the list was drawn up— was appointed to command 100 men with Richard Assheton of Middleton and others. In July 1539 the future Member had been granted the wardships of William and Anne Radcliffe of Winmarleigh, with annuities amounting to £23 2s.2d.; in May 1545 he received that of