LEIGH, Sir John (c.1598-c.1666), of Northcourt, Shorwell, I.o.W.
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Family and Education
b. c.1598, 1st s. of Barnaby Leigh of Northcourt by 1st w. Elizabeth, da. and coh. of Hugh Bampfield of North Cadbury, Som. educ. Christ Church, Oxf. matric. 25 Oct. 1616, aged 18. m. by 1629, Anne, da. of William Bulkeley of Nether Burgate, Fordingbridge, Hants, 2s. (1 d.v.p.) 3da. Kntd. 1 Sept. 1628; suc. fa. 1642.2
Col. of militia ft. I.o.W. 1642-at least 1647, dep. lt. 1643; commr. for sequestrations, Hants 1643, levying money 1643, assessment, I.o.W. 1647-8, Aug. 1660-1, Hants 1648, 1652, 1657, Jan. 1660-1, Hants and I.o.W. 1664-d.; j.p. Hants 1650-3.3
Leigh’s grandfather bought Northcourt in 1586, and improved a modest fortune by good husbandry and frugality. In 1640 Leigh became the first of the family to sit in Parliament. On receiving a militia commission from the Earl of Pembroke, he returned from Westminster to the Isle of Wight, which was undisturbed by the Civil War. He ceased to sit at Pride’s Purge, but his only service on the commission of the peace was under the Commonwealth. He was re-elected for Yarmouth at the general election of 1660, and marked as a friend on Lord Wharton’s list, where he is wrongly called ‘Sir George’. But he was no more active in Parliament than in local government, perhaps sharing his grandfather’s reluctance to differ in opinion from his neighbour. He made no speeches in the Convention and was named to no committees. It is not known whether he stood in 1661. He died about 1666.4