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|17 Jan. 1559||WILLIAM WEBBE|
|21 Apr. 1572||GILES ESTCOURT|
|17 Nov. 1584||GILES ESTCOURT|
|6 Oct. 1586||GILES ESTCOURT|
|22 Oct. 1588||CHRISTOPHER WEEKES|
|21 Sept. 1597||THOMAS EYRE|
The corporation of Salisbury during this period consisted of the mayor, the twenty-four (later known as aldermen) and the forty-eight. Until the grant of James I’s charter, the city had no recorder, but it employed a counsel. Up to his death in 1587 Salisbury’s legal adviser was Giles Estcourt, one of the twenty-four. He was succeeded by John Penruddock at a fee of 53s. 4d., and he in turn in March 1601 by Giles Tooker, who later became the first recorder. As part of a scheme to extend the city’s privileges, Salisbury, dangerously it might be thought, created the high stewardship, held by a succession of Privy Councillors, Walsingham, Hatton, (Sir) Thomas Heneage and (Sir) John Puckering.
The corporation fended off possible encroachment on its freedom of choice from the bishop of Salisbury, the earls of Pembroke and the high stewards. With an exception in 1571 and another in 1572, all the Elizabethan Members were of the twenty-four John Eyre (1571) is likely to have been a local country gentleman who owned property in the borough. In 1572 the 2nd Earl of Pembroke, who for the second time had received instructions from the Privy Council to ensure a ‘good choice’ of knights and burgesses throughout Wiltshire, asked for a nomination. The assembly agreed but ‘although the ancient orders and privileges be now at his honourable request dispensed with’, this was not to be a precedent. Pembroke’s nominee was presumably Hugh Tucker, resident in Salisbury but not a member of the twenty-four In January 1593 (Sir) Thomas Heneage, the high steward, asked in vain for a nomination, promising to choose someone who would ‘care for the good of that incorporation’ and who would ‘ease the half of your charge’. Instead the mayor and another member of the corporation were chosen.
Salisbury paid wages: £12 8s. each in 1559, £12 and £10 in 1589, and £10 each in 1593.
City of Salisbury mss D(34); Hoare, Wilts. Salisbury, 708, 711; HMC Var. iv. 229, 230, 232; Neale, Commons, 165.