Sir John Byron, of Colwick, Kt.

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Sir John Byron, of Colwick, Kt.

Also Known As: "The Honorable Lord Byron"
Birthdate: (48)
Birthplace: Clayton, Lancashire, England
Death: January 3, 1489 (48)
Colwick, Nottinghamshire, England
Immediate Family:

Son of Sir Nicholas Byron, Kt. and Alice Byron
Husband of Margery Strickland
Brother of Mabel Gardiner; Margaret Byron; Ellen Booth; Elizabeth Byron; Sir Nicholas Byron, Kt. and 1 other

Occupation: Constable of Nottingham Castle
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Sir John Byron, of Colwick, Kt.

Sir Nicholas Byron d. Clayton (D.1462). Son and heir of John, married Alicia Boteler, of Beausey, Lancs., and they had two sons, John and Nicholas.

Sir John Byron of Colwick (P.1488). Son and heir of Sir Nicholas Byron de Clayton, married Margery Fowlehurst, but they had no issue. He rallied to meet Henry VII upon his landing at Milford Haven in August 1485, and fought against Richard III at Bosworth on the 22nd August.



The evening preceding the departure of the army from Nottingham for Bosworth, Sir John Byron, spent in the company of Sir Gervase Clifton, at his home at Clifton. Sir John was due to fight under Henry III, and Sir Gervase under Richard III. On this occasion, and with the prospect of being, within the course of a few days, engaged in bloody fray in support of the rival dynasties, the two friends, with their right hands laid on the evangelists, bound themselves, by oath, that whichever of the two — supposing both were not slain - should prove the survivor from the coming conflict, should use his best endeavours, with the dominant power, to save the lands of the vanquished from confiscation; so that his family should not be deprived of their estates and honours. The battle, of the day but one following, brought the pledges of friendship to a trying test. Sir Gervase fell, towards the close of the fight, covered with wounds, in defence of the crown and person of his worthless master, Byron, seeing his friend fall from his horse, quitted the ground on which he stood, and ran to his assistance, sustained him in his arm, and entreated him to surrender himself to his protection. But life was ebbing; the fallen warrior had only just strength of saying in a half-stifled utterance, “All is over; remember the oath between us!” and expired. The victor after restoring the dead body of his friend to his afflicted family, employed himself, successfully, with the King, Henry VII, in saving the property of the Cliftons from the effects of the attainder, under which so many other noble families were reduced to comparative poverty.

Immediately that King Henry VII started his reign, he made John Byron, (Sept. 22, 1 Henry VII) a knight and Constable of Nottingham Castle, and Porter of the same. Steward and Warden of the Forest of Sherwood and of the Parks and Woods of Billey, Birkeland, Rumwood, Dukeland and Fulwode, with £40 per year for the said offices for his faithful services to the King. The forest areas mentioned can still be traced. Birkeland (now Birklands) and Billey (now Bilhagh) are both at the southern end of the surviving forest. Birklands is part of the Welbeck Estate and Bilhagh on the Thoresby Estate. The Major Oak or Queen Oak which stands half a mile north of Edwinstowe is in the Bilhagh area and the Parliament Oak, stands just south of the Birklands area, near to the Edwinstowe and Mansfield Road. Rumwood or Roumwood area of the forest was presumably near to Worksop Priory, as timber in the Gatehouse oak ceiling was taken from there. Fulwood or Fulwode, is the area between Teversal and Sutton-in-Ashfield. Possibly Dukeland was in the area where Clumber Park is now.

Sir John Byron, was also Custos or Lieutenant of the Isle of Man and Steward of Manchester College. Presumably it was this John Byron, who represented the Shire in Parliament in 1476.

  • Sir Richard by his marriage with Joan de Colwick increased the family estates. (fn. 40) He died in June 1397, holding the manor of Clayton, and lands in Royton, Butterworth, Woodhouses in Ashton, and others outside Lancashire; John, the son and heir, was then only ten years of age, (fn. 41) and his wardship was granted to Sir John Ashton. (fn. 42) A settlement of lands in Droylsden was in 1415 made on the occasion of the marriage of Sir John Byron's daughter Elizabeth with Thomas son of Sir John Ashton. (fn. 43) Sir John is stated to have married Margery daughter of Sir John Booth of Barton, by whom he had three sons and five daughters. (fn. 44) He acquired lands in Blackley from Lord La Warre and in Gorton from Sir Robert Booth; (fn. 45) in 1435 he did homage to Nicholas Thorley, one of the feoffees of Lord La Warre; (fn. 46) and in 1440 he made a settlement of his lands in the counties of Lancaster, Lincoln, and Northampton. (fn. 47) Two years later he made a grant to John Byron, said to be the son of his younger son Nicholas, who ultimately became heir to the whole of the Byron manors and lands. (fn. 48) Sir John was sheriff of the county from 1437 to 1449; (fn. 49) when he was succeeded by his son Nicholas, a grant of the reversion having been obtained in 1444. (fn. 50)
  • Nicholas Byron remained sheriff till 1460. (fn. 51) He was made a knight the year following at the coronation of Edward IV, (fn. 52) but died in 1462, (fn. 53) when he was succeeded by Sir John Byron, above mentioned. Sir John, made a knight by Henry VII as he came from York in 1486, (fn. 54) died 3 January 1488–9, holding the manor of Clayton of the lord of Manchester in socage, by 7s. rent, also the manor of Blackley, with lands there and in Gorton, Royton, Butterworth, Ogden, and Ashton. His heir was his brother Nicholas, who in 1498 was stated to be thirty years of age. (fn. 55) Nicholas was made a Knight of the Bath in 1501 at the marriage of Prince Arthur, (fn. 56) and died three years later. (fn. 57) It would appear that before this Colwick had become the principal residence of the family, (fn. 58) and John, son and successor of Sir Nicholas, (fn. 59) is usually described as 'of Colwick'; he was 'not at home' at the Heralds' Visitation of Lancashire in 1533. (fn. 60) In1540 he procured a grant of Newstead Priory, Nottinghamshire, (fn. 61) which afterwards became the chief seat of the family. He had no issue by his wife, and his connexion with Lancashire led to his living in adultery with Elizabeth daughter of John Costerdine of Blackley and wife of George Haugh. He had several children by her and afterwards married her. (fn. 62) In 1547 he made a settlement of his estates in favour of his bastard son John, (fn. 63) and died in 1567, expressing penitence in his will, (fn. 64) which contained his open profession of adherence to the old religion, as in his desire that an honest priest be hired to sing or say mass for his soul in Colwick Church, (fn. 65) and confirmed the grant of all his manors, lands, leases, &c., to his 'base son' John, whom he appointed executor.
  • This son, who was made a knight in 1579, (fn. 66) died in 1603, leaving as heir his son, a third Sir John Byron, (fn. 67) who, having many children and being encumbered with debts, sold the Lancashire estates, so that the connexion of the family with the county almost ceased. The manor of Clayton, with the appurtenances in Droylsden and Failsworth, was purchased by the brothers George and Humphrey Chetham in 1621. (fn. 68)
  • From: 'Townships: Droylsden', A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 4 (1911), pp. 282-287. URL: Date accessed: 10 December 2013.
  • _________________________

Sir John BYRON Knight, son of Sir Nicholas BYRON Sheriff of Lancashire and Alice Boteler, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 was born 1441 in Clayton, Lancashire, England. He died 3 May 1488 in Clayton, Lancashire, England.

John married Margery FOULESHURST on 1462 in Clayton, Lancashire, England.

  1. 1Norris, Steven D., The "le Norreys" Family in England from 1135 to 1650.
  2. 2Burke, John, A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Extinct and Dormant Baronetcies of England, Ireland, and Scotland (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1977.), p. 217, Family History Library, 942 D22bu 1977.
  3. 3Brydges, Egerton, Collins's Peerage of England (London: T. Bensley, 1812.), 7:96, Family History Library, 942 D22be.
  4. 4Roskell, John Smith, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons 1386-1421 (Stroud, Gloucestershire: Alan Sutton Pub. Ltd., 1992.), 2:463, Family History Library, 942 D3hp 1386-1421.
  5. 5Richardson, Douglas, Plantagenet Ancestry: A Study in Colonial and Medieval Families (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2004.), p. 188, Family History Library, 942 D5rd.
  6. 6Mundy, Richard, Middlesex Pedigrees (London: Harleian Society, 1914. FHL BRITISH Film #162,073.), p. 19, Family History Library.
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Sir John Byron, of Colwick, Kt.'s Timeline

Clayton, Lancashire, England
January 3, 1489
Age 48
Colwick, Nottinghamshire, England