HULLE, William II, of Lancing, Suss.
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Family and Education
m. by 1394, Lucy.
Tax collector, Suss. Nov. 1383, Dec. 1385, Nov. 1386, Jan. 1392, Mar. 1401, Dec. 1406.
Dep. butler, Chichester and Shoreham 28 Oct. 1393-5, and Seaford Oct. 1395-9.
As William Hulle ‘of Steyning’, in October 1369 he provided securities at the Exchequer for the abbot of Fécamp’s proctor when the latter was permitted to farm the abbey’s English estates, but there is no further record of him before his first appointment as a collector of parliamentary subsidies in 1383. Through marriage he acquired lands and annual rents amounting to more than £4 at Lancing, Sompting, Broadwater and Steyning (all near the coast at Shoreham), and also further west at Pagham, near Chichester harbour, which properties were all, in 1394, settled on him and his wife in tail. Hulle traded in corn and cloth shipped from the same ports of west Sussex where he saw service as deputy butler for six years from 1393. His area of supervision initially covered the coastline from ‘Hormouth’ (Chichester harbour) to Shoreham, and later extended to Seaford. It was while in office that he was accused of having once smuggled wool: namely, that he had sold five sacks of wool to a foreign merchant, carrying them from Lancing to Shoreham, whence they had been shipped uncustomed in June 1392. He made forfeiture for this offence in 1395, but obtained a royal pardon on 17 Nov. that year, shortly after receiving confirmation of his appointment as deputy butler. He pleaded his pardon when the Exchequer summoned him to answer at Michaelmas 1396. In the course of his term as deputy butler, Hulle was returned to Parliament for Shoreham in September 1397. The pardon granted him a year later was perhaps intended to indemnify him for misdemeanours committed while carrying out his official tasks, although, as it also covered any support he may have given to the Lords Appellant in the period 1386 to 1388, clearly there are important aspects of Hulle’s career of which we remain ignorant. His behaviour continued to excite suspicion on occasion, as when, in November 1400, a number of tuns of wine cast up on shore from a wrecked ship were found in his cellars at Shoreham. In the Hilary term of 1402 Hulle served as a member of a jury in the suit in the King’s bench between Bishop Rede of Chichester and the prior of Hardham, he and his fellows finding the latter guilty of poaching in the bishop’s warren at Coldwaltham. He is not recorded after 1406.1
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Author: L. S. Woodger
There is nothing to identify him with William atte Hull, who sat for East Grinstead two years earlier, in 1395.
- 1. CFR, viii. 15, 38; CP25(1)240/78/22; E122/33/13-15, 25; E159/173 Mich. rot. 19; CPR, 1391-6, pp. 608, 688; C67/31 m. 2; Chichester Cart. (Suss. Rec. Soc. xlvi), 271-2; CIMisc. vii. 172.