WOOD, George (by 1526-58), of the Inner Temple, London and Balterley, Staffs.

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 1526, prob. 1st s. of Humphrey Wood of Balterley by Elizabeth, da. of Thomas Rance. educ. I. Temple. m. by 1548, Margaret, da. of Richard Grosvenor of Eaton, Cheshire, wid. of Ralph Birkenhead of Crowton, Cheshire, 1da.2

Offices Held

Steward, reader’s dinner, I. Temple 1548, bencher by 20 Nov. 1552, attendant upon reader 1554, auditor for treasurer 1550-4, Summer reader 1555, Lent 1556.

Serjeant-at-law 1555; justice, Anglesey, Caern. and Merion. 26 Apr. 1555, Chester and Flint 2 Apr. 1558.3


George Wood came of a family which had resided in Staffordshire since the reign of Edward III. Although his early death led to his omission from its pedigree he was almost certainly an eldest son, and the Robert Wood of Balterley whose wardship he purchased in 1547, and who followed him at the Inner Temple in the next year, may thus have been his nephew.4

After a career at the Inner Temple which can be traced from 1548 Wood was made a serjeant and a Welsh judge in 1555. To his own family’s interest in Flintshire, reflected in the grant of 5 July 1547 by which in addition to the wardship of Robert Wood he was given by the court of wards an annuity of 5 marks out of the capital messuage of Hall Wood and other properties in the county, he added the yield of his marriage into the family of Grosvenor of Eaton, Cheshire, which had a stake in Flintshire. It was also to this alliance that Wood may have owed his seat in the Parliament of 1547. Since his Membership is known only from the list of Members as revised for the opening of the session of January 1552 he could have been returned either at the outset or at a by-election, and in the latter case it would be tempting to link his return with the shrievalty of his brother-in-law Richard Grosvenor in 1551. By that time, too, John Pollard, whom Wood was to succeed as justice of Chester and Flint in 1558, had joined the council in the marches and from that vantage point could have given Wood support. A less likely source of influence would have been William, Lord Paget, who in 1550 had obtained the wardship of Wood’s nephew Thomas Grosvenor, for by the close of 1551 Paget was in disgrace with the faction in power.5

Wood was ill when he made his will on 28 Apr. 1558: he asked to be buried ‘after a Christian sort without vain glory or pomp’. His lands in England he left to his younger brother Thomas and in default to his other brother Richard, and those in Denbighshire and Flintshire to his daughter Mary. He gave a ring to Sir Henry Delves. According to the inquisitions post mortem his lands in Flintshire were worth £10 3s.4d. and those at Balterley a mere 24s. a year. Wood died on 23 June 1558. His widow married John Molyneux of Melling near Maghull in Lancashire.6

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: P. S. Edwards


  • 1. Hatfield 207.
  • 2. Date of birth estimated from first reference. Wm. Salt Arch. Soc. v(2), 325-6; Vis. Cheshire (Harl. Soc. xviii), 108; (lix), 115, 138; Vis. Lancs. (Chetham Soc. lxxxi), 100; Harl. 6159; Wards 7/10/96.
  • 3. CPR, 1554-5, pp. 59, 278; 1557-8, p. 311; W. R. Williams, Welsh Judges, 31.
  • 4. LP Hen. VIII, xxi.
  • 5. CPR, 1547-8, p. 13; Ormerod, Cheshire, ii(2), 836, 842.
  • 6. PCC 36 Noodes; Wards 7/10/96, 102/26; C142/121/157.