William Widdrington

William Widdrington

arms ARMS: Quarterly, argent and gules a bend sable.

CREST: On a chapeau gules turned up ermine a bull's head sable spotted argent.

SUPPORTERS: Two white bucks proper powdered with ermine spots sable attired or.

William Widdrington, 1st Baron Widdrington of Blankney, 1610 - 51. Member of Parliament for Northumberland from 1640 until 26 August 1642, when he was expelled for taking arms against Parliament. A zealous supporter of Charles I, he was Commander-in-Chief in Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Rutland. He took part in several battles, including Winceby

Widdrington was committed to the Tower of London for 6 days in June 1641 for "bringing candles into the House of Commons in an offensive manner", an event which Michael Mendal (University of Alabama) explains as follows:- You'll want to consult a still-unpublished portion of D'Ewes diary, Harl. 163, ff. 301a,301b (9 June 1641), where events of the previous evening — the candles episode — are discussed. The afternoon of 8 June was partly devoted to the business of the publication of George Digby's speech on the earl of Strafford, a move which much angered the House leadership. However, it seems that the House was thin on 8 June, and Digby's partisans thought they might win a vote to let him get off without punishment. When the sgt.-at-arms brought in candles to prolong the sitting (possibly at the direction of some members, though this is not clear), or possibly when he tried to remove them (again, under direction) a scuffle broke out. Widdrington and Sir Herbert Price took the candles from the sgt in order to prolong the sitting. It was an ill-tempered house: there was also a scuffle or near-scuffle about whether Digby should withdraw, his friends trying to hinder his efforts to do so, his enemies trying to clear the way.

Following defeat at Marston Moor [2 July 1644], Widdrington withdrew to Hamburg with the Earl of Newcastle. His estates were confiscated following his proscription and banishment as a traitor in 1648/9. He accompanied Charles II to Scotland in 1650, and he was mortally wounded whilst fighting for him at Wigan, dying on the 3rd of September 1651.

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