WALKER, Alexander.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
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Family and Education

Offices Held


The identity of Alexander Walker has not been established. It was following the death of William Layton in July 1551 that he came to sit with Edmund Twyneho for Lichfield in the last session of the Parliament of 1547. Both Layton and Twyneho had owed their election to William, 1st Lord Paget, but during the autumn of 1551 Paget’s fortunes slumped with the overthrow of the Duke of Somerset and his own imprisonment. If the by-election had been held before October, Paget would presumably have had the nomination, but it is not clear who is likely to have intervened thereafter, although Bishop Sampson may have done so.

It has proved impossible to place Alexander Walker among the Staffordshire families of that surname. He may be identifiable with a ‘Mr. Walker’ mentioned in a letter written from Lichfield on 20 Mar. 1545 by Randall Mainwaring to Ralph Leftwiche. The writer reported that this Mr. Walker had told Humphrey Mainwaring of his surprise at the passing of a certain order, the nature of which is not indicated, and had promised to send a servant of his own with one of Leftwiche’s to (Sir) Nicholas Hare, then justice of Chester and Flint: Walker also intended to refer the matter personally to Bishop Sampson as president of the council in the marches. However, this man is more likely to have been Richard Walker, a servant and executor of the previous president Bishop Lee and archdeacon of Stafford for 20 years until his death in 1567.2

Several Alexander Walkers can be traced living in London during the middle years of the 16th century. All but one of these men were of Scottish origin and of rather humble circumstances. The exception was a merchant taylor, about whom little is known beyond his will, which he made as a sick man on 7 Mar. 1558. After asking to be buried in the church of St. Dunstan-in-the-East, he provided for his wife and children. He left his house in Bread Street to his wife whom he made sole executrix and appointed Edward Dicher as overseer. The will was proved before the end of March 1559, but Walker had presumably been buried at St. Dunstan’s before 16 Nov. 1558, the day on which the first surviving burial register begins. A business connexion between Lord Paget and another merchant taylor Simon Lowe alias Fyfield who was himself to sit for another Staffordshire borough during Mary’s reign, suggests that it was this Alexander Walker who was Member for Lichfield in 1552.3

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: Alan Davidson


  • 1. Did not serve for the full duration of the Parliament; Hatfield 207.
  • 2. Wm. Salt. Arch. Soc. v(2), 297; J. C. Wedgwood, Staffs. Parl. Hist. (Wm. Salt Arch. Soc.), i. 327; LP Hen. VIII, add.; T. Harwood, Lichfield, 211.
  • 3. LP Hen. VIII, xvi, xix; CPR, 1550-3, p. 307; 1560-3, p. 63; PCC 13 Noodes.