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|10 Jan. 1559||RICHARD PATRICK|
|25 Apr. 1572||THOMAS SLADE 1|
|19 Nov. 1584||FRANCIS FLOWER|
|12 Oct. 1588||FRANCIS FLOWER|
|8 Oct. 1597||RICHARD CROMWELL|
Though there was a connexion with the duchy of Lancaster going back to the thirteenth century, it has not proved possible to associate more than one Huntingdon MP in this period with the chancellor of the duchy. Perhaps there were more—it has been stated that Sir Robert Cecil asked for a seat late in the reign, and some of the nominations attributed below to great men may have been contrived through the duchy—but no links have been established.
Returns were made by two named bailiffs and ‘the major part of the burgesses within the said borough abiding and residing who were present’ (1584) or ‘all the burgesses ... with their unanimous consent’ (1597). About 20 signed the return. In 1596 a recorder was appointed, Sir Oliver Cromwell, whose family had been prominent locally since acquiring Hinchingbrooke at the dissolution of the monasteries. Two members of the family were returned in this period, Robert in 1593 and Richard in 1597. Other local gentlemen who sat for the borough were Tristram Tyrwhitt (1571), Thomas Chicheley (1601) and William Beecher (1601). Chicheley may, however, have owed his return to a court connexion, and Beecher’s father-in-law, the 3rd Baron St. John, was lord lieutenant of the county. Other Huntingdon MPs who may have, or did, come in through the influence of great men were George Blyth in 156 (Sir William Cecil); Francis Flower, who took the senior seat in the 1580s (Hatton) and Robert Lee in 1593. Lee may be presumed to have been nominated by (Sir) Thomas Heneage, chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster, who is known to have asked for a seat at that election.
The identities of Richard Gooderick (1563) and Ralph Rokeby (1571) have not been established. All the remaining Huntingdon MPs resided in the town, and all held municipal office except Thomas Slade (1572), who was of counsel to the borough. He died before the 1581 session but no mention has been found of a by-election to replace him.
VCH Hunts. ii. 121-35; Add. Ch. 33592; E. Griffith, Huntingdon Recs. 94-101; R. Carruthers, Huntingdon, 164.
Author: P. W. Hasler
- 1. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament.