SECKFORD, Charles (1551-92), of Great Bealings, Suff.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. 3 Jan. 1551,1 s. of Francis Seckford. educ. Trinity Coll. Camb. 1562; G. Inn 1567. m. 6 Oct. 1575, Mary, da. of Thomas Steyning by Frances, Countess of Surrey; at least 2s. suc. gd.-fa. to Seckford Manor 30 Sept. 1575, and uncle Thomas to Woodbridge properties 1587.2

Offices Held

J.p. Suff. from c.1582.


Seckford was orphaned before he was seven. Little is known about his father, Francis, the eldest of the seven sons of the Thomas Seckford who died in 1575. He seems to have married into a Berkshire or Staffordshire family and was dead by April 1557. In 1557 the two Thomas Seckfords, Charles’ grandfather and his uncle, settled the family estates upon him and his heirs male. The elder Thomas Seckford was to have a life interest, and, in the event of his death before Charles came of age, the younger Thomas was to administer them.3

Seckford was presumably returned for Aldeburgh through the influence of his uncle, the master of requests, whose estates were nearby. It is also possible that it was his uncle who arranged his marriage—certainly he made a settlement upon Charles’s heirs of all lands belonging to the priory manor of Woodbridge.4

Seckford died in 1592, and was buried at Woodbridge on 20 Feb. His will, made 10 Feb. and proved 11 Apr. of that year, provided for the sale of land in order to meet debts. To his wife he bequeathed all his ‘apparel, chains, gold borders, goldsmiths’ work and jewels’. He appointed his ‘cousin’ Anthony Wingfield, his brother-in-law Edmund Poley and his ‘very well beloved cousin Humphrey Wingfield, of Brantham’ executors and guardians for his sons Thomas and Henry. His widow was buried beside him on 24 Aug. 1596.5

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603


  • 1. Wards 7/23/57.
  • 2. PCC 27 Harrington, 3 Adeane; C142/175/69; Norwich consist. ct. 75, 76 Puntyng; will of Margaret Sampson formerly w. of Thomas Seckford, dated 4 Jan. 1542; paper on the Seckfords, read by P. Chandler before the Soc. of Antiquaries 2 June 1923.
  • 3. Loder, Stats. Ordins. Govt. of Almshouses (Woodbridge 1792), gives Francis’s w. as ‘Ellen, da. of Sir Thomas Newbury, of Staffs. quaere Ellen, da. of—Whittington’. Chandler (op. cit) interprets this as ‘Ellen, da. of—Whittington, of Newbury, Staffs’. Venn. Al. Cant. has ‘Eleanor, da. of Sir Thomas Newbury’.
  • 4. C142/175/69; Chandler, op. cit.; Ipswich and E. Suff. RO., T3/1/2; L. Dow, ‘Two 16th cent. marriage settlements’, Procs. Suff. Inst. Archaeol. xxvi(2).
  • 5. PCC 27 Harrington; Wards 7/23/134; Woodbridge reg.