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The identity of Alexander Walker has not been established. It was following the death of William Layton in July 1551 that he came to sit with Edmund Twyneho for Lichfield in the last session of the Parliament of 1547. Both Layton and Twyneho had owed their election to William, 1st Lord Paget, but during the autumn of 1551 Paget’s fortunes slumped with the overthrow of the Duke of Somerset and his own imprisonment. If the by-election had been held before October, Paget would presumably have had the nomination, but it is not clear who is likely to have intervened thereafter, although Bishop Sampson may have done so.
It has proved impossible to place Alexander Walker among the Staffordshire families of that surname. He may be identifiable with a ‘Mr. Walker’ mentioned in a letter written from Lichfield on 20 Mar. 1545 by Randall Mainwaring to Ralph Leftwiche. The writer reported that this Mr. Walker had told Humphrey Mainwaring of his surprise at the passing of a certain order, the nature of which is not indicated, and had promised to send a servant of his own with one of Leftwiche’s to (Sir) Nicholas Hare, then justice of Chester and Flint: Walker also intended to refer the matter personally to Bishop Sampson as president of the council in the marches. However, this man is more likely to have been Richard Walker, a servant and executor of the previous president Bishop Lee and archdeacon of Stafford for 20 years until his death in 1567.2
Several Alexander Walkers can be traced living in London during the middle years of the 16th century. All but one of these men were of Scottish origin and of rather humble circumstances. The exception was a merchant taylor, about whom little is known beyon