DALSTON, John (by 1523-80), of Dalston Hall, nr. Carlisle, Cumb.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. by 1523, 1st s. of Thomas Dalston of Dalston Hall by 1st w. m. by 1556, Catherine Tolson of Bridekirk, 1s. John ?4da. suc. fa. 22 July 1550.1

Offices Held

Sheriff, Cumb. 1567-8, 1576-7; j.p. 1569- d. 2


John Dalston had licence to enter on his inheritance on 20 Nov. 1550. His family had long been settled at Dalston and his father’s acquisition of numerous monastic and Percy properties had greatly enhanced its wealth and standing. These were probably not yet sufficient, however, to ensure him a knighthood of the shire, which when it came he may have owed to the patronage of Thomas Wharton, 1st Baron Wharton: his father had been on friendly terms with Wharton, and his son was to marry a daughter of Wharton’s kinsman and follower, Thomas Warcop.3

Little has come to light about Dalston’s life. In September 1550 the Privy Council sent a letter to him and others ordering them to cease felling trees at Flimby in Cumberland and a year later a John ‘Dawson’ was one of those required to examine an offender. On 12 Oct. 1564 Dalston had licence to alienate the advowsons of Harrington and Workington to Henry Curwen. In 1570 Lionel Duckett recommended that either Richard Dudley or Mr. Dalston, both ‘worshipful men and willing’, should be appointed receiver of copper: Dudley, whose brother John Dudley was a shareholder in the company for mines royal, was appointed, although Dalston was to join George Lamplugh in taking delivery of copper for the Queen in 1574. He is not mentioned in the report of 1564 on the religious persuasions of justices of the peace, but six years later Bishop Barnes described him, enigmatically, as vir vafri ingenii, tempori serviens, et qui maxime extinctum cuperet evangelium. Dalston died on 10 Dec. 1580 leaving a son John aged 24.4

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: Alan Davidson


  • 1. Date of birth estimated from age at fa.’s i.p.m., Wards 7/5/111. Hutchinson, Cumb. ii. 447; Nicolson and Burn, Westmld. and Cumb. ii. 316-17; Vis. Cumb. (Harl. Soc. vii), 5; Trans. Cumb. and Westmld. Antiq. and Arch. Soc. n.s. x. 216. According to the pedigrees Dalston was knighted but he is styled ‘armiger’ in his i.p.m., C142/192/6.
  • 2. CPR , 1569-72, p. 223.
  • 3. CPR , 1549-51, p. 173.
  • 4. APC , ii. 122, 192; CPR , 1563-6, p. 142; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 376; M. B. Donald, Eliz. Copper , 161, 219, 289; Cam. Misc. ix(3), 48-51; VCH Cumb. ii. 77n; Cath. Rec. Soc. xxii. 117.