SKILLINGTON, Robert, of Leicester.
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Family and Education
m. bef. Sept. 1392, Joan.
Skillington, who was made free of the borough of Leicester in 1379, owned six cottages there at the time of his death. A member of the Corpus Christi guild, in 1392 he was concerned with the foundation of the guildsmen’s chantry in St. Martin’s church.1
From 1386 onwards, Skillington was involved as a master mason in a number of architectural projects in the Midlands. In November of that year he received a royal writ of aid to repair the unfinished church and college of St. Mary in the Newarke, Leicester, on behalf of the executors of Henry, duke of Lancaster. Eleven years later he was granted a second writ for the same purpose, this time as specifically employed by John of Gaunt, who had now become interested in his father-in-law’s foundation. The work was still going on in 14OO, when Skillington received a third writ.2 Throughout his time at the Newarke, however, he was also employed in building works for the duchy of Lancaster: in 1391 and 1392 he supervised extensive repairs to Kenilworth castle, for which he received £500 to cover costs, and early in 1400 he was busy at the duchy stronghold at Tutbury. Two years later he and William Bispham* were commissioned to repair Leicester castle and other duchy property in the town. Skillington was dead by 1412, by which time his widow had married another Leicester burgess, William Asty.3