BUBWITH, William, of Kingston-upon-Hull, Yorks.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1386-1421, ed. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark, C. Rawcliffe., 1993
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Family and Education

Offices Held

Bailiff, Kingston-upon-Hull, Mich. 1368-9.1

Collector of taxes, Kingston-upon-Hull Nov. 1377, Nov. 1383, May 1384.


Bubwith was evidently still quite young when he became bailiff of Hull, in 1368, and little else is known about this early period of his life. Five years later he went surety for Henry Selby on his election to Parliament for the borough, but it was not until 1377, when he received the first of three appointments as a royal tax collector, that he began to play a more or less continuous part in local affairs. Not long afterwards he was involved in a conveyance of rents and property in Blackfriar Gate, possibly acting as a feoffee-to-uses for his friend, Adam Tutbury*. By now he was regarded with trust by the government at Westminster; and when, in October 1380, an inquiry was held into the theft of certain merchandise between Hull and York, the royal commissioners concerned were instructed to use him as their agent for taking depositions.2

From time to time, Bubwith served as a juror in Hull. In 1382, for example, he sat on the jury which recommended Adam Tutbury’s plans for the endowment of a chantry at the chapel of Holy Trinity (in which he may have been personally involved); and twice in 1389 he attended inquests held in the coroner’s court. During this period a good deal of his time and energy was devoted to the collection of subsidies for the Crown, a task which caused him some problems, and led eventually to the imposition of a fine of £20, in February 1384, because of his alleged failure to render proper accounts. In the following April, however, he and his associates were pardoned the sum ‘in consideration of their great travail and expense’. Somewhat surprisingly, Bubwith did not represent Hull in the House of Commons until 1391, and was actually at Westminster when two ships, carrying cargoes of wine imported by him from France, docked in the port. No more is heard of him after this date, when he probably died or retired.3

Ref Volumes: 1386-1421

Author: C.R.


Variant: Bubwyth.

  • 1. W.A. Storey, Trinity House Kingston-upon-Hull, 131.
  • 2. C219/7/24; Cal. Hull Deeds ed. Stanewell, D139-40A, 143, 160; CPR, 1377-81, p. 577.
  • 3. C143/399/5; E122/59/15; JUST 2/248; CCR, 1381-5, p. 373.