WELDON, Thomas (c.1500-67), of Cookham, Berks.
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Family and Education
b. c.1500, 3rd s. of Hugh Weldon, sewer to Henry VII and Henry VIII. m. (1) by 1538, Cecilia; (2) ?by 1551, Anne, 5s. 2da.1
Cofferer’s clerk 1520; third clerk of kitchen by Mar. 1526, second clerk by 1532, chief clerk by 1538-40; 1st master of Household by 1540; cofferer 1552-3, from 1559; keeper of the leads at Windsor castle from 1540, of the keys by 1553, great wardrobe 1559; j.p. Berks. by 1543, Wilts. from c. 1559; capt. in army in France 1544; high steward of New Windsor Apr. 1548-Sept. 1563.2
Weldon’s rise in the Household was accompanied by the steady acquisition of property. In Berkshire he was granted the manors of White Waltham, which had belonged to Chertsey abbey; Canon Court and the rectory at Cookham, which had belonged to the abbey of Cirencester; the manor of Woolstone, vacant through the attainder of Thomas Seymour† Lord Seymour of Sudeley; and, in 1563, the manor of Pangbourne.3
He was prominent in the Household before Cromwell’s fall, and perhaps it was there he acquired the extreme protestant views which took him to the Fleet prison for a time in 1542. His position in the Household brought him the high stewardship of Windsor on the death of Sir Anthony Browne† master of the horse, but in 1563 the Earl of Leicester was chosen high steward in his place. Described in 1564 as ‘a furtherer earnest’ of true religion, Weldon may have been largely resposible for the puritan tradition in Windsor, evident in burgesses such as Richard Gallys returned by the borough to Elizabethan Parliaments.4
Weldon died 2 Mar. 1567. In his will he expressed the hope that he would ‘rise again and be a partaker of the everlasting life provided for God’s elect’. There was to be no pomp or excess at the funeral, and ‘a preacher well learned in God’s true and holy word’ should preach the sermon. Weldon’s administration of his offices seems not to have been entirely judicious, for the will records that he had still to repay £800 out of £1,000 of the Queen’s money, lent by him to the Earl of Arundel; ten years after his death no goods had come to hand to settle the debt.5
Ref Volumes: 1558-1603
Author: Alan Harding
- 1. Vis. Berks. (Harl. Soc. lvi), 139; VCH Berks. iii. 172; PCC 5 Babington.
- 2. LP Hen. VIII, xiii(1), p. 457; xiii(2), p. 499; xv. p. 405; xvi. p. 202; xix(1), p. 160; Stowe 571, f. 59; APC, iii. 137; A. Woodworth, Purveyance for the Royal Household (American Philosoph. Soc.) 10; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 146; Bodl. Ashmole 1126, f. 41; CPR, 1547-8, p. 142; 1550-3, pp. 351, 393; 1553 and App. Edw. VI, pp. 413, 416.
- 3. CPR, 1547-8, 3CPR, 1547-8, pp. 404-5; 1550-3, p. 112; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 169; VCH Berks. iii. 126-8, 132, 151, 166, 172, 304, 463; LP Hen. VIII, xvii. p. 632; PCC 5 Babington.
- 4. Strype, Mems. ii(2), p. 53; APC, i. 97; LP Hen. VIII, xviii(2), p. 140; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 146; Cam. Misc. ix(3), p. 38.
- 5. E150/824/1; PCC 5 Babington.