Sir Richard Cooke, MP

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Richard Cooke, MP

Birthplace: Gidea Hall, Essex, England
Death: Died in Gobrons, Essex, England
Immediate Family:

Son of Sir Anthony Cooke,Knight, Order of the Bath MP, of Gidea Hall and Anne Fitzwilliam
Husband of Anne Cooke
Father of Sir Anthony Cooke, MP; Phillipa Cooke and Mildred Cooke
Brother of Mildred Cecil, Baroness Burghley; Elizabeth Cooke, Lady Russell; Katherine Killegrew; Anne Cooke, Lady Bacon; Edward Cooke and 6 others

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About Sir Richard Cooke, MP

Richard Cooke (MP for Preston)

Richard Cooke (by 1530– 3 October 1579) was an English politician.

He was the eldest surviving son of Sir Anthony Cooke of Gidea Hall, near Romford, Essex. He succeeded his father in 1576.

He was a Groom of the Privy Chamber in 1551.

He was elected the Member of Parliament for Stamford in March 1553, Tavistock in 1563 and Preston in 1559.[1]

He married Anne, daughter of John Caulton, by whom he had one son Anthony, and a daughter. William Cooke (of Highnam) was a nephew.



  • Richard COOKE of Gidea Hall
  • Born: BEF 1530, Gidea Hall, Essex, England
  • Died: 3 Oct 1579, Gobrons, Essex, England
  • Notes: See his Biography.
  • Father: Anthony COOKE of Gidea Hall (Sir)
  • Mother: Anne FITZWILLIAM
  • Married: Anne CAUNTON (dau. of John Caunton) BEF 1559
  • Children:
    • 1. John COOKE
    • 2. Anthony COOKE
    • 3. Phillipa COOKE
    • 4. Mary COOKE
    • 5. Mildred COOKE
    • 6. Francis COOKE
  • From: COOKE of Gidea Hall1
  • The details in this biography come from the History of Parliament, a biographical dictionary of Members of the House of Commons.


  • COOKE, Richard (by 1530-79), of Gidea Hall, Essex.
  • b. by 1530, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of Sir Anthony Cooke, and bro. of William†. m. by 1559, Anne, da. of John Caulton, 1s. Anthony† 1da. suc. fa. 11 June 1576.1
  • Offices Held
    • Groom, privy chamber by 1551-3; searcher, port of London 22 Feb. 1552-?7; j.p. Essex 1558/59, q. 1561-2, 1575-d.2
  • The pattern of Richard Cooke’s early life and career was set by his father’s. Reared in the same milieu as his five celebrated sisters, he followed his father to court and served alongside him in the privy chamber. It was as a replacement for his father that he first sat in Parliament in the spring of 1553. The borough of Stamford had begun by acceding to Cecil’s request to elect Sir Anthony Cooke, who was Cecil’s father-in-law, as its senior Member, but when the sheriff made his return two weeks later it was Richard Cooke who occupied that position. The change can scarcely have been made save at the father’s request, and the most likely explanation is that having sat through the four sessions of the previous Parliament the publicity-shunning Sir Anthony Cooke withdrew in favour of his son.3
  • Under Mary, Cooke’s path diverged from his father’s. If he was the man of that name who swore allegiance to the Queen on 16 July 1553 he early submitted to the new regime, and although his household appointment came to an end he retained the post in the London customs which he executed through a deputy. When his father went abroad in the spring of 1554 Cooke probably remained in England: he was perhaps already a married man with responsibilities of his own to add to the care of his father’s. The ‘Master Cooke’s son’ who saw John Brett leave Strasbourg in July 1556 could have been one of his younger brothers, and he was certainly in England in the following spring when his father’s wish for a visit from him during his convalescence was apparently turned down by the government. Sir Anthony Cooke then wrote of him to Cecil, ‘I have not had at all times most cause to be content with him, but now, I fear, I shall be loth to lack him’.4
  • Richard Cooke sat with his father and his brother William in the first two Elizabethan Parliaments but none of the three was destined for more than local office. Cooke died on 3 Oct. 1579, little more than three years after his father.5
  • From:


  • COOKE, Richard I (by 1530-79), of Gidea Hall, Essex.
  • b. by 1530, 2nd but, 1st surv. s. of Sir Anthony Cooke and bro. of William Cooke I. m. Anne, da. of John Caulton, 1s. Anthony 1da. suc. fa. 1576.
  • Offices Held
    • Groom of privy chamber 1551-3; searcher, port of London 1552-?7; j.p. Essex 1559-61/2, from 1575.
  • Cooke was returned (at the last minute) to Elizabeth’s first Parliament through the influence of his Cecil relatives. No doubt it was the same interest that secured him a seat at the 2nd Earl of Bedford’s borough of Tavistock in 1563. It is not clear why Cooke’s name is not on the j.p. lists between 1561/2 and 1575. He died on 3 Oct. 1579. By his will, made on 31 July of that year, he left to his wife, the sole executrix, a life interest in Gidea Hall and the residue of his goods. Overseers were Burghley and Cooke’s brother-in-law Lord Russell. The will was proved 17 Nov. 1579.
  • Vis. Essex (Harl. Soc. xiii), 39; Stowe 571, f. 30; LC2/4/1, f. 19; CPR, 1550-3, p. 76; 1553 with App. 1547-53, pp. 39, 385; 1555-7, p. 294; 1559-60, p. 33; HMC Hatfield, i. 140-1; CP, ii. 75-7; Strype, Annals, ii(2), pp. 87-8; C142/189/45; PCC 44 Bakon.
  • From:


  • Richard Cooke
  • Birth: 1521 Romford, Greater London, England
  • Death: Oct. 3, 1579 Romford, Greater London, England
  • Richard was a love child legitimized in his adulthood, born in Gidea Hall when his illustrious father Sir Anthony Cook was only 17. He lived in the large household, possibly under the name Fitzwilliam, and married Alice Caunton, who was also a household member. They both probably had jobs related to the manor, but lived until after the legitimization, and so were probably buried in the family plot. A moot point, as no trace of it or the estate hall now exist.
  • When it did exist, as I never tire of saying, it was in Essex-- not London.
  • Family links:
  • Parents:
  • Anthony Cooke (1504 - 1576)
  • Anne Fitzwilliam Cooke (1505 - 1588)
  • Spouse:
  • Alice Caunton Cooke (1526 - ____)
  • Children:
    • Henry Cooke (1542 - 1572)*
  • Siblings:
  • Richard Cooke (1521 - 1579)
  • Mildred Cooke Cecil (1524 - 1589)*
  • Elizabeth Cooke Russell (1527 - 1609)*
  • Anne Cooke Bacon (1528 - 1610)*
  • Burial: Gidea Hall, Romford, London Borough of Havering, Greater London, England
  • Find A Grave Memorial# 71581371
  • From:


  • Sir Anthony Cooke, Sheriff of Essex & Hertfordshire, Burgess of Lewes1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
  • M, #90528, b. 1505, d. 11 June 1576
  • Father John Cooke, Esq.1,11,6,12 b. c 1475, d. 10 Oct 1515
  • Mother Alice Saunders1,11,6,12 b. c 1484
  • Sir Anthony Cooke, Sheriff of Essex & Hertfordshire, Burgess of Lewes was born in 1505 at of Gidea Hall, Havering, Essex, England.1,5,6,10 He married Anne FitzWilliam, daughter of Sir William FitzWilliam, Alderman & Sheriff of London and Anne Hawes, before 4 February 1523; They had 4 sons (Anthony; Sir Richard; Edward; & Sir William) and 5 daughters (Mildred, wife of Sir William Cecil, Lord Burghley; Anne, wife of Sir Nicholas Bacon; Elizabeth, wife of Sir Thomas Hoby, & of John, Lord Russell; Margaret, wife of Sir Ralph Rowlett; & Katherine, wife of Sir Henry Killigrew).1,13,2,3,5,6,7,8,10 Sir Anthony Cooke, Sheriff of Essex & Hertfordshire, Burgess of Lewes left a will on 22 May 1576; Buried at Romford, Essex.1,5,6,10 He died on 11 June 1576 at of Magdalen Laver, Essex, England.1,5,6,10 His estate was probated in March 1577.1,5,6,10
  • Family Anne FitzWilliam b. c 1500
  • Children
    • Mildred Cooke1 b. c 1525
    • Elizabeth Cooke+1,3,4,5,8,9,10 b. c 1545
  • Citations
  • [S5] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry, p. 91.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. II, p. 219.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. III, p. 466-467.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. IV, p. 53-54.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. IV, p. 144-145.
  • [S6] Douglas Richardson, Plantagenet Ancestry: 2nd Edition, Vol. I, p. 236.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. II, p. 678.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. IV, p. 508.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. IV, p. 659.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. V, p. 93.
  • [S16] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, 2nd Edition, Vol. IV, p. 144.
  • [S4] Douglas Richardson, Royal Ancestry, Vol. V, p. 92.
  • [S15] Douglas Richardson, Magna Carta Ancestry, p. 351.
  • From:



SOURCE< the Mayflower Society and family records.



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Sir Richard Cooke, MP's Timeline

Gidea Hall, Essex, England
Age 29
Age 30
Age 44
Essex, England
Age 45
Essex, England
Age 51
Gobrons, Essex, England