NEWPORT, George (by 1532-58/60), of Droitwich, Worcs.
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Family and Education
b. by 1532, ?s. of George Newport of Droitwich by Joan. m. by 1554, Elizabeth, da. of Peter Blount of Sodington Hall in Mamble, 4da.1
Bailiff, Droitwich 1553-4.2
George Newport came of a leading Droitwich family which had supplied the borough with bailiffs intermittently since 1485. The namesake who held office between 1487 and 1514 was probably his father or grandfather, and among his kinsmen were the Edward, John and Richard Newport listed in 1541 as holders of phates, or salt-pans, and the William Newport whose name stands first among the electors on the indenture of 3 Nov. 1554.3
Newport appears in the charter of April 1554 as the first of the two bailiffs whose term was to expire on the following 2 Oct.; he was therefore a natural choice as the senior of the two Members whom Droitwich elected to the Parliament of November 1554, the first to which it had sent representatives, as far as is known, since 1311. The responsibility did not weigh so heavily as to deter Newport from quitting the Parliament early without obtaining leave to do so. For this offence he was informed against in the King’s bench in the following Easter term, but as no proceedings were taken against him the authorities must have satisfied themselves that his withdrawal had not been a gesture of dissent. That it did not cost him the support of his brethren is shown by his re-election, with the same fellow-Member, Robert Wythe, to the following Parliament. In that House, to judge from the list of the Members concerned, he did not follow the lead of Sir Anthony Kingston by voting against one of the government’s bills.4
Little has come to light about Newport’s life. It is not clear whether he was the ‘Mr. Newport, a gentleman dwelling in the Wiche’ who, as Leland recorded in the early 1540s, had begun but later abandoned salt-workings and had built a ‘fair new house of timber’ at the end of the town; nor whether the George Newport who in April 1542 was given a passport with Humphrey Coningsby to travel abroad ‘for their affairs there’ was Coningsby’s Worcestershire neighbour or one of the Newports of Essex and Hertfordshire. The Worcestershire musters for the army for France in 1544 included Edward, George and William Newport, but the last two names were cancelled.5
Newport died between 18 Dec. 1558 and 24 Apr. 1560, the dates of the making and probate of his will. It was very short, having been drawn up while he was sick. He wished to be buried in St. Augustine’s churchyard by his grandfather, whom he did not name. He left to his wife four salt-pans then occupied by his cousin Mary Bedell (Roger Bedell had been his fellow-bailiff), and to Fulk Newport a lease. He named as his executors his brother Robert Newport and Gilbert Dedick and charged them to give sums of money to his daughters at their discretion.6
Ref Volumes: 1509-1558
Author: M. K. Dale
- 1. Date of birth estimated from first reference. VCH Worcs. iii. 87; Vis. Worcs. (Harl. Soc. xxvii), 22; PCC 24 Mellershe.
- 2. CPR, 1553-4, p. 403.
- 3. Habington’s Worcs. (Worcs. Hist. Soc. 1899), ii. 306-7; Worcs. RO, bulk accession 1006, nos. 316-43; Nash, Worcs. i. 323; VCH Worcs. iii. 87; CPR, 1549-51, pp. 37-38; C219/23/138.
- 4. CPR, 1553-4, p. 403; KB29/188 rot. 48.
- 5. Lelan, Itin. ed. Smith, v. 93-94; LP Hen. VIII, xvii, xix.
- 6. PCC 24 Mellershe; Habington’s Worcs. 481.