KINGSWELL, William (d.1613), of Shalden, nr. Odiham, Hants.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1558-1603, ed. P.W. Hasler, 1981
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

1st s. of Swithin Kingswell of Shalden by his 1st w. Avis, da. of John Hunt of Rentworth, wid. of John Hurlbatt of Shalden. m. 2s. 1da. Kntd. 1603.

Offices Held

J.p. Hants from c.1596, q. by 1601; escheator Jan.-Nov. 1600.


Kingswell came from a minor gentry family. In 1576 he purchased the manor of Lasham, near Alton, and 15 years later he bought Shalden, which he made his principal residence. He also leased the manor of Newchurch in the Isle of Wight, conveying the lease to his son Edward shortly before his death. In May 1596 he was accused in the Star Chamber by Sir Henry Wallop and his son of the same name of conniving at the poaching activities of his younger son, also William Kingswell, in Wallop’s deer park. When the matter was brought before the sessions of the peace at Winchester on 20 Apr. 1596, Kingswell, who was a justice, ‘rose from the bench and used means unto divers of the grand jury ... promising great favours’. The jury nevertheless finding against young Kingswell, according to Wallop, his father first bailed him out of prison and then employed a legal device to avoid his punishment.

Kingswell’s local status was barely sufficient to command a seat for Petersfield, so possibly he owed his return to Thomas Hanbury, senior, who purchased the control of the borough in 1597, when his son and namesake was the second Petersfield Member. Kingswell was presumably the Mr. ‘Kingsmell’ who was on a committee for a bill on the length of kerseys, 14 Dec. 1601. He died in 1613. By his will, dated 27 Aug. that year, he bequeathed 10s. to Winchester cathedral, 40s. each to Alton and Shalden churches, and 20s. to Lasham church. He also remembered the poor of Alton, Shalden and Lasham. He gave rings to his four overseers, all local people, and made his elder son Edward executor and residuary legatee. Edward succeeded to all the property, and sold Shalden in 1628.

Vis. Hants (Harl. Soc. lxiv), p. 114; VCH Hants, iv. 83, 103; St. Ch. 5/W42/32, W58/11; D’Ewes, 684; PCC 101 Capell.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: R.C.G.