TRENTHAM, Thomas I (1538-87), of Rocester, Staffs.

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

b. 21 Apr. 1538, 1st s. of Richard Trentham of Shrewsbury, Salop and Trentham, Staffs. by Mary, da. of David Ireland of Shrewsbury. m. Jane, da. of Sir William Sneyd of Bradwell in Wolstanton and Keele, 2s. Francis and Thomas II. 3da. suc. fa. 1 Jan. 1547.

Offices Held

Sheriff, Staffs. 1571-2, 1579-80, j.p.q. from c.1574, custos rot. by 1577, dep. lt. by 1585, prob. by 1570.


Trentham’s father acquired the site and demesnes of the monastery of Rocester, near Uttoxeter. Houses and shops in Shrewsbury also came into the family by his marriage, but most of the Shropshire property went to Thomas’s younger brothers and sisters, or was sold to pay his father’s debts. Thomas Trentham’s wardship was granted in November 1547 to Sir Philip Draycott, who administered the estates so well that after receiving livery of his lands in June 1559, Trentham was able to add to them by a series of purchases until shortly before his death. Most of the land was put out to pasture. Trentham was content with one appearance as knight of the shire. He left no trace upon the records of the House. A good deal of his local activity consisted of examining suspected recusants and harbourers of Jesuit priests. Sir Ralph Sadler corresponded with him about Mary Stuart and, as one of the ‘principal gentlemen in Staffordshire’ he was ordered to attend Mary on her removal in September 1586 to Fotheringay. He was at the March 1587 quarter sessions, and died at Rocester the following May. In his will, made the previous October, he divided the lands not entailed on the elder son Francis (who had just come of age) between the widow and his younger son Thomas. The unmarried daughter, Elizabeth, was left £1,000. She later married Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford.

Staffs, Peds. (Harl. Soc. lxiii), 224; Wm. Salt Arch. Soc. iii(2), pp. 140-1; xiv(1), pp. 168, 180-1, 210; xv. 161; xvii. 233; Vis. Salop (Harl. Soc. xxviii), 271; SP12/121; 12/179/52; C142/85/47, 57; CPR, 1547-8, p. 65; 1558-60, p. 74; Staffs. Rec. Soc. 1938, p. 129; CSP Dom. 1547-80, p. 685; APC, xi. 208; xiii. 164; Lansd. 102, ff. 62-3; HMC 4th Rep. 339; Staffs. Q. Sess. Rolls, i. (Wm. Salt Arch. Soc.), 313; PCC 36 Rutland.

Ref Volumes: 1558-1603

Author: N. M. Fuidge