STRICKLAND, Sir Roger (1640-1717), of Thornton Bridge, Yorks.
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Family and Education
bap. 2 Feb. 1640, 2nd s. of Walter Strickland of Nateby Hall, Garstang, Lancs. by Anne, da. of Roger Croft of East Appleton, Yorks. unm. Kntd. by Oct. 1672.1
RN 1661, capt. 1666-80, 1683-Dec. 1688, r.-adm. 1687-Sept. 1688; capt. of ft. Prince Rupert’s Marines 1672, Lord Widdrington’s Regt. 1673, Portsmouth garrison 1676-82; dep. gov. Southsea Castle 1681-2.2
J.p. Yorks (N. Riding) 1683-9, dep. lt. 1685-Oct. 1688.
Strickland came from a cadet branch of the Sizergh family. His father, a Royalist in the Civil War, compounded for his delinquency in 1652 with a fine of £356 12s. Strickland himself, as a younger son, entered the navy at the Restoration, and was knighted for his gallantry at the battle of Sole Bay. Retiring in 1680, he bought Thornton Bridge from his cousin Sir Thomas Strickland, and in the following year inherited an estate at Catterick from an aunt. These two properties, together with some small tenements and tithes, gave him an annual income of £750. He considered standing for Westmorland with Alan Bellingham in 1681, but was persuaded to desist in favour of Sir John Lowther III. Sir Daniel Fleming wrote:
I am glad to hear that Sir Roger Strickland is very well satisfied and thinks no more of standing for this county, since he, who ever behaved himself so gallantly at sea, I would not have [wished] to have met with any opposition.
A crypto-Catholic, Strickland stood high in the favour of the Duke of York, who wrote to George Legge:
I mention Sir Roger Strickland to you, that you would be watchful for him and put the King in mind of him when any occasion shall offer that he may be employed, he having now laid long out of command.
He was appointed deputy governor of Southsea Castle in December, but only held the post for two months. In 1682 he took over his cousin’s farm of the duties on salt imports, and two years later he leased a number of Lancashire estates forfeited for recusancy, doubtless in collusion with their owners.3
Strickland was first invited to stand for Aldborough in 1683 by ‘some of the neighbouring gentry’ who had supported Sir John Reresby. He was returned to James II’s Parliament as a court supporter, probably unopposed, but left no trace on its records. He declared his Catholicism in 1687, and on the dissolution of Parliament he returned to the navy and was promoted rear-admiral. As commander of the Channel fleet in June 1688 he provoked a mutiny by ordering the celebration of mass, and had to be replaced. His successor was the steadfast Anglican Legge, now Lord Dartmouth, who wrote to the King:
My old friend, Sir Roger, hath been very indiscreet, and his behaviour hath been very disobliging all this summer, which I could not at first believe, but he is sensible himself of the general dislike there is to him.
He had lost his interest at Aldborough, and was not recommended as court candidate. But he remained with the fleet until December, when he resigned his commission and fled to France. He accompanied James to Ireland in May 1689, and his name was included in the attainder bill introduced into the Commons 20 June 1689. The Lords struck out his name on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence against him, but although the bill was never passed he was outlawed and his estates sequestrated. He died at St. Germains 8 Aug. 1717 and was buried there.4
Ref Volumes: 1660-1690
Author: Paula Watson
- 1. H. Hornyold, Gen. Mems. Fam. Strickland, 263-4.
- 2. CSP Dom. 1676-7, p. 479; 1680-1, pp. 171, 614; 1682, pp. 101-2.
- 3. Cal. Comm. Comp. 1888-9; VCH Lancs. vii. 308-9; Hornyold, 263-5; CSP Dom. 1673-5, p. 226; 1677-8, p. 249; D. Scott, Stricklands of Sizergh Castle, 185-6; Westmld. RO. D/Ry 2374, 2383, 2394; HMC Le Fleming, 179; HMC Dartmouth, i. 66; Cal. Treas. Bks. vii. 357, 1235.
- 4. Reresby Mems. 359-60, 582; HMC Dartmouth, i. 132, 233, 238, 261; HMC 10th Rep. I, 138; Cal. Treas. Bks. xi. 164; Hornyold, 267.