WILKINSON, Christopher (c.1637-94), of Lincoln's Inn and Waddow Hall, Waddington, Yorks.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. c.1637, 3rd s. of Thomas Wilkinson of Kirkbrigg, Yorks. by Elizabeth, da. of Thomas Clement of Newton Morrell. educ. St. Catherine’s, Camb. 1655; L. Inn 1661. m. (1) 19 Dec. 1663, Ellen, da. of Thomas Cheyne of Luton, Beds., 1s.; (2) lic. 27 Apr. 1669, Barbara, da. of one Barker, wid. of William Harpham of the Inner Temple, s.p.; (3) 8 Jan. 1674, Ellen, da. of James Dawson of Downham, Lancs., wid. of Richard Waddington of Whalley, Lancs., s.p.1

Offices Held

J.p. Yorks (W. Riding) 1674-Sept. 1688, Nov. 1688-d., Lancs. 1675-86, 1689-d.; out-bailiff, Clitheroe 1675 6, 1693-d.; commr. for assessment, Lancs. 1677-80, Lancs. and W. Riding 1689-90; freeman, Preston, 1682.2


Wilkinson is said to have bought Waddow Hall, only half a mile from Clitheroe, in 1658. Although never called to the bar he was a lawyer like two of his brothers, and retained chambers in Lincoln’s Inn. His family was of recent origin, though they claimed to be descended from the Wilkinsons of county Durham. His appointment to the Lancashire commission of the peace was denounced on the grounds that he was non-resident and of small estate, and he was removed in 1686, presumably at the instance of Lord Brandon ( Charles Gerard). In August 1688 he was one of the West Riding justices who avoided committing themselves on the abolition of the Test Act and Penal Laws by ignoring the lord lieutenant’s summons. He was elected to the Convention for Clitheroe, probably as a moderate Tory, but left no trace in its records. He did not stand again, though he played an important part in the 1693 by-election as out-bailiff, supporting his nephew John Weddal against the Whig candidate Fitton Gerard. He died on 13 Jan. 1694, and was buried at Waddington. He had disinherited his son, apparently on suspicion of an inclination to Popery, in Weddal’s favour, and no other member of the family entered Parliament.3

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: Irene Cassidy / John. P. Ferris


  • 1. Clay, Dugdale’s Vis. Yorks., i. 84-85; W. S. Weeks, Clitheroe in the 17th Century, 241, 325.
  • 2. Lancs. RO, QSC 79-113; Weeks, 241-4; HMC Var. ii. 402; Preston Guild Rolls (Lancs. and Cheshire Rec. Soc. ix), 197.
  • 3. HMC Lords, ii. 182; HMC Kenyon, 211, 274.