CALVERLEY, Sir Hugh (by 1506-58), of Lea, Cheshire.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. by 1506, 1st s. of Sir George Calverley of Lea by Elizabeth, da. of Piers or Peter Dutton of Dutton and Hatton. m. by 1532, Eleanor, da. and h. of Thomas Tattenhall of Bulkeley, Cheshire, 3s. inc. Sir George 1da.; 1s. illegit. suc. fa. May 1536, Kntd. 11 May 1544.1

Offices Held

Prob. servant of Duke of Richmond by 1536; commr. sewers, Cheshire 1538, musters c.1544.2


Of old Cheshire stock, Hugh Calverley inherited lands at Lea, Handley, Milton and elsewhere in the county, and these were to be augmented shortly before his death by his wife’s manor of Harthill and her other property; the manor of Tattenhall he had leased in 1546, while in Chester he rented houses from the corporation. To his standing in the shire as a qualification for its knighthood in the Parliament of 1545 he could add the lustre of his part in the recent Scottish campaign; his fellow-Member Sir Lawrence Smith had also been knighted by the Earl of Hertford at Leith. Calverley’s Membership of this, his only Parliament, is reflected in the appearance of his name in one of the measures of its first session: in the Act for the amendment of highways beside Chester (37 Hen. VIII, c.37) he is mentioned as one of those made responsible for the roads concerned.3

Calverley seems to have been better suited to war than to peace. As a young man he was several times cited in the Star Chamber for offences ranging from horse-stealing and deer-poaching, both accompanied by assault, to maintaining a murderer, and two years before his death his conduct provoked a (perhaps misleadingly minuted) council order to the sheriff of Cheshire ‘to call Sir Hugh Calveley before him touching Hugh Philipp, to put him on the pillory [and] to bind him for his good abearing’. His part in the proceedings against George Blagge for heresy in 1546 might help to explain his seeming eclipse under Edward VI but not its continuance under Mary, when as a cousin of Gardiner’s servant Robert Massey he could have been expected to attract notice.4

The absence of a will and the damaged condition of the inquisition post mortem on Calverley make it impossible to date his death more closely than between 25 July and 17 Nov. 1558; he was buried in Bunbury church, Cheshire. The son and heir George was about 26 years of age when he succeeded.5

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: N. M. Fuidge


  • 1. Date of birth estimated from age at fa.’s i.p.m., C142/64/15. Vis. Cheshire (Harl. Soc. xviii), 59-60, 259; Ormerod, Cheshire, ii. 769; LP Hen. VIII, vi.
  • 2. LP Hen. VIII, xi, xiii, xix, xx.
  • 3. Ormerod, ii. 283, 723; Chetham Soc. viii. 189n; LP Hen. VIII, xix-xxi; Wards 7/100/9; Chester RO, Ass. bk. i, f. 53.
  • 4. Lancs. and Cheshire Rec. Soc. lxxi. 46, 95, 113, 122; APC, v. 264.
  • 5. J. P. Rylands and F. C. Beazley, Mons. at Bunbury Church, Cheshire, 23, 30; Wards 7/100/9; Ches. 3/72/11.