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?s. of Robert Longford. m. Agnes (d.c.1434),1 ?1s.
Tax collector, Salop Mar., Oct. 1393.
Lord Grey’s constable of Ruthin castle, Denb. by Sept. 1401, bef. 12 Mar. 1409-aft. 16 Aug. 1421; steward of Dyffryn Clwyd by 22 June 1402-Mich. 1406, by Oct. 1408-Mich. 1410.
Longford’s background is obscure, and nothing is known of him for certain before his appointment as a tax collector in Shropshire in 1393. Not long after his return to Parliament two years later he became associated with Reynold, Lord Grey of Ruthin, and by September 1401 he had been appointed by him as constable of Ruthin castle. He may have been holding the office in the previous year, when Owen Glendower, having been proclaimed prince of Wales, launched his rebellion by descending on Ruthin at the head of 250 Welshmen. Six months after Lord Grey was captured by Glendower in April 1402 in an ambush at Ruthin, Longford was among the envoys sent by Henry IV to treat with the Welsh about payment of the 10,000 marks’ ransom demanded for his release. He evidently now settled for good in Ruthin, where he acquired a burgage and served for some time as steward of the lordship of Dyffryn Clwyd. By March 1409 he was acting as both constable and steward, an unusual combination. His second term as steward ended around Michaelmas 1410, but he remained constable into Henry V’s reign and until as late as the summer of 1421. By 1423 Thomas Strange* had succeeded him, but Longford was still alive that August, when he was described as an esquire. He died before February 1427, leaving a widow named Agnes. John may have been the father of Richard Longford, who became steward of Dyffryn Clwyd in 1416 (while he himself was still constable) and who served as receiver of the lordship from before 1430 until after 1444 and as constable of the castle by 1452. Other members of Longford’s family entered the service of Lord Grey’s heir, Edmund, earl of Kent.2
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Author: L. S. Woodger
- 1. Vis. Wales ed. Meyrick, ii. 356; SC2/222/1 mm. 61, 65d. Although he may have been the John, son of Henry Longford of Fitz, Salop, who in 1379 obtained a pardon for causing the death of a man at Shrewsbury: CPR, 1377-81, p. 405.
- 2. CPR, 1401-5, p. 156; Welsh Hist. Rev. ii. 306; SC2/221/4 mm. 19, 27, 6 mm. 3d, 15, 8 m. 1, 222/1 mm. 2, 5, 23d, 27; NLW, Bachymbyd 219; R.I. Jack, ‘Greys of Ruthin’ (London Univ. Ph.D. thesis, 1961), 154-5, 225; Grey of Ruthin Valor ed. Jack, 123; Clwyd RO (Ruthin), DD/WY/1523-5.