Thomas Roberts, of Glassenbury

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Thomas Roberts, of Glassenbury

Birthdate: (68)
Birthplace: Glassenbury, Cranbrook, Kent, England
Death: 1562 (67)
Glassenbury, Cranbrook, Kent, England
Place of Burial: Glassenbury, Kent, England, United Kingdom
Immediate Family:

Son of Walter Roberts, Esq., of Glassenbury and Alice Roberts
Husband of NN Sackefeld and Lady Elizabeth Roberts
Father of Thomas Roberts, Esq.; Walter Framingham Roberts; John Roberts, of Cranbrook, Kent and Ticehurst, Sussex; MP; Joane Roberts; Francis Roberts and 1 other
Brother of Ann Roberts; Clement Roberts; Dorothy Roberts; William Roberts; Elizabeth Roberts and 2 others
Half brother of Mary Roberts; Jane or Joane Roberts; John Roberts; Sara Roberts; Joan Exhurst and 1 other

Managed by: Private User
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About Thomas Roberts, of Glassenbury

  • Thomas Roberts
  • Birth: Sep. 21, 1494
  • Death: 1557
  • Family links:
  • Parents:
  • Walter Roberts (____ - 1522)
  • Alice Naylor Roberts
  • Siblings:
  • Elizabeth Roberts Hendley**
  • Joan Roberts Horden (____ - 1547)**
  • Martin Roberts (1484 - 1551)**
  • Thomas Roberts (1494 - 1557)
  • *Calculated relationship
  • **Half-sibling
  • Burial: St Dunstan Churchyard, Cranbrook, Tunbridge Wells Borough, Kent, England
  • Find A Grave Memorial# 136190227
  • From:


  • A genealogical and heraldic history of the extinct and dormant baronetcies of England, by J. and ... by John Burke
  • Pg.444
  • This family was said to have derived from a gentleman of Scotland, one
  • WILLIAM ROOKHERST, who came into England and settled at Goudhurst, in Kent, in the third year of the reign of HENRY I. He assumed afterwards the
  • Pg.445
  • surname of ROBERTS;* and having purchased a certain lands in Goudhurst, Called Winchet Hill, he there built a mansion, calling it Rookherst, after his own name. Here his descendants continued for 275 years, until the reign of RICHARD II. when
  • STEPHEN ROOBERTES marrying the daughter and heir of William Tyllye, esq. to whom the manor and lands of Glassenbury belonged, was, in her right, possessed thereof, and built "a fair sumptuous house" on the hill of Glassenbury, which came by lineal descent to
  • WALTER ROBERTHE, esq. who in the year 1472, caused the same to be pulled down, and the next year erected, at the charge of eighteen hundred pounds, another moated house in the valley of Glassenbury and parish of Cranebook, which ever afterwards continued the abode of the family.† This Walter became possessed of the whole estate by the death of his brother Stephen, who died without issue. he was a person much famed for his eminent qualifications and hospitality, as also for adhering to the Lancastrian interest, by which he became a great sufferer during the rule of RICHARD III. Having concealed Sir John Guldeford in his house at Glassenbury, where that person was seized by Sir Edward Stanley and Sir John Savage, he was attainted of treason, his lands seized, and forced himself to abscond until the accession of HENRY VII. when he was restored to his possessions. In the 4th of that reign he had a grant from the crown to impark six hundred acres of land and one thousand acres of wood in Cranebrook, Gowdehurst, and Ticehurst, in the counties of Kent and Sussex; as also that he and his heirs should have free warren in all his lands and woods, and fishing in his waters, in the parishes aforesatid, with all liberties and franchisements in such cases granted. He was sheriff of the county of Kent in the same year, and hiving lived under six kings, HENRY VI. EDWARD IV EDWARD V. RICHARD III. HENRY VII. and HENRY VIII. departed this life at more than eighty years of age, A.D. 1522. This Walter m. first, 23rd October, 1463, Margaret, daughter and heir of John Penn, esq. of Penn's Place, Herts; secondly (his first wife dying 6th May, 1480), Isabel, daughter of Sir John Culpeper, knt.; and thirdly, Alice, daughter of Richard Naylor, esq. and widow of Lord Abergavenny; by whose ladies he had no less than thirty children.‡ His son and heir,
  • THOMAS ROBERTES, esq. of Glassenbury, was sheriff of Kent 25 HENRY VIII. He m. Elizabeth, daughter of James Frammingham, esq. of Suffolk, and had issue,
    • WALTER, his heir.
    • Thomas, who died in 1567.
    • John, ancestor of the Roberts of Borzell Ticehurst, and Stone House, Warbleton, Sussex.
    • Mary, m. to Thomas Cheney, of Woodley.
    • Jane, m. first to Richard Burston; and secondly, to Richard Love.
  • Dying in 1557, he was s. by his son,
  • WALTER ROBERTES, esq. of Glassenbury, who married Frances, daughter of Mr. Alderman John Maynard, of London (which lady was born when the Emperor CHARLES V. visited England, and had the honour to have his imperial majesty for her godfather); by her he had issue,
    • THOMAS (Sir), his heir.
    • Edmund, m. Judith, third daughter of William Bird, esq. of the city of London, and widow of Thomas Blunt. He died 12th September, 1625, leaving issue.
    • Alexander, of Thorp, near Egham, in Surrey. This gentleman was a great traveller. He m. a daughter of Thomas Culwich, esq. of London, and dying in 1649, left issue.
  • The eldest son and heir,
  • I. SIR THOMAS ROBERTS, of Glassenbury, who was knighted by King JAMES I. at Whitehall, before his coronation, 23rd July, 1603, and was created a BARONET 3rd July, 1620. He m. Frances, daughter of Martyn James, esq. of Smarden, in Kent, and had issue,
    • WALTER (Sir), his successor.
    • Thomas, d. unm.
    • John, d. unm.
    • William, d. unm.
    • Frances, m. first, to John Hooper, esq. of Stockberry; and secondly, to Henry Crisp, esq.
    • Elizabeth, m. to Sir Alexander Culpeper, knt. of Bedgbury.
    • Anne, m. to Thomas Crisp, esq. of Goudhurst.
  • Sir Thomas is described as "hospitable without excess, and charitable without ostentation." It is farther stated, that "in all other respects he shewed himself a prudent and judicious gentleman, a lover of his country, and a good Christian; he valued the memory of his ancestors, and bore in his mind their good actions, as well as the care they had taken in preserving the estate entire for many generations; where-upon, in the year 1599, he caused an inscription to be set up in the church of Cranebrook, containing a memorial of his family, that his posterity, having it always before their eyes, might be induced to imitate their example, and preserve the credit and repute his forefathers had lived in." He d. 21st February, 1627, and was s. by his son,
  • II. SIR WALTER ROBERTS, who was knighted by King JAMES at Greenwich 7th May, 1624. This gentleman augmented his estate by marrying Margaret, daughter and heir of George Roberts, esq. of Brenchley, in Kent, and had five sons and three daughters, but none of them survived him. His eldest son,
    • THOMAS, m. Elizabeth, daughter and heir of Sir Matthew Howland, knt. and dying 23rd January, 1638, left two sons, viz.
      • HOWLAND, who succeeded his grandfaather as third baronet.
      • Walter, who assumed the name of HOWLAND on inheriting the estate of Bristow Causey, in Surrey, from his mother's family. He m. Elizabeth, daughter of — Nutting, esq. of Cambridge, but leaving no issue, his possessions devolved upon his nephew, Sir Thomas Roberts.
  • Sir Walter was s. at his decease by his grandson,
  • III. SIR HOWLAND ROBERTS, who m. Bridget, daughter of Sir Robert Jocelyn, knt. of Hyde Hall, in Hertfordshire, and had issue,
    • * The name was at different time written ROOBERTES, ROBERTES, ROBERD, ROBERT, ROBERTHE, and ROBERTS.
    • † There were successively from WILLIAM ROOKHERST, alias ROBERTS, thirteen esquires of the name and progeny who dwelt in the parishes of Goudherst and Cranebrook to the year 1599, when Thomas Roberts, esq. of Glassenbury, erected a plain monument of black marble in the chancel of the church of Cranebrook, with an inscription thereon setting forth the descent of his family as here related.
    • ‡ Of whom the following, mentioned in his will, survived to maturity: THOMAS, his eldest son, Clement, John, William, George, Edmund, and Martin; Elizabeth Hendley, Mary St.-Nicholas, Joan Horden, Elizabeth Tukke, Joan Leed, Dorothy St.-Nicholas. On those and their heirs male he entails his estates, remainder to William Ashburnham, of Ashburnham, and his heirs male.
  • Pg.446
    • THOMAS, his heir.
    • Jocelyn, b. 29th October, 1659; m. Hannah, second daughter of Joseph Harris, citizen and merchant taylor, of London, and left three daughters, viz.
      • 1. BRIDGET, m. to Edmund Farrington, a Turkey merchant.
      • 2. HANNAH, m. to Mr. Langton, of London, goldsmith.
      • 3. REBECCA, d. unm.
    • Bridget, b. in 1657; m. 5th October, 1675, to Edmund Trench, of London.
    • Elizabeth, b. in 1661, d. young.
    • Dorothy, b. in 1662, after the deceased of her father; m. to John Spence, esq. of Malling, in Sussex.
  • Sir Howland d. in November, 1661, aged twenty-seven, and was s. by his elder son,
  • IV. SIR THOMAS ROBERTS, b. 2nd December, 1658, who was returned knight for the county of Kent in 1691, and again 7 WILLIAM III. He m. 31st May, 1683, Jane, daughter and co-heir of Sir John Beale, bart. of Farningham, in Kent, and had issue,
    • THOMAS, his successor.
    • WALTER, heir to his brother.
    • Jane, b 5th April, 1684; m. Samuel Trench, of London; and d. s. p. 20th October, 1706.
    • Bridget, b. 1st December, 1686; m. to Edmund Trench, of London; and d. 9th June, 1720, leaving a son,
      • Edmund Trench, who d. in 1725.
  • Sir Thomas d. 20th November, 1706, in the forty-eighth year of his age, and was s. by his son,
  • V. SIR THOMAS ROBERTS, b. 27th June, 1689. This gentleman m. in 1714, Elizabeth, only daughter and heir of Samuel Newbery, citizen of London, but died s. p. 5th January, 1729-30 (his lady died 30th July, 1727), and was s. by his brother,
  • VI. SIR WALTER ROBERTS, who m. in 1726, Elizabeth, only daughter and heir of William Slaughter, esq. of Rochester, and had by her, who died 15th July, 1744, two daughters, viz.
    • ELIZABETH, who died in 1743, aged sixteen.
    • JANE, m. in 1752, to George, third Duke of St Albans, and d. s. p. in December, 1778.
  • Sir Walter died 7th July, 1745, when the BARONETCY EXPIRED. The manor of Glassenbury was devised to Sir Thomas Roberts, bart. of Ireland.
  • .... etc.


  • ROBERTS, John (1531-73), of Cranbrook, Kent and Ticehurst, Suss.
  • b. 6 Aug. 1531, 3rd s. of Thomas Roberts of Glassenbury, nr. Cranbrook by Elizabeth, da. of Sir James Framingham of (?Debenham), Suff. m. Elizabeth, da. of Robert Pigott of Colwick in Waddesdon, Bucks., at least 3s. 1da.2
  • The identity of the senior Member for Steyning in the third Marian Parliament has not been established beyond question. If his election conformed with the Queen’s request for the return of townsmen, as his fellow-Member William Pellatt’s clearly did, he could scarcely have been other than the John Roberts of Steyning who had inherited his father Henry Roberts’s lands there in 1544, was a lessee of chantry property called Woslands in Steyning in 1548 and at his death in January 1556 was holding about 200 acres in Steyning, including a house called ‘The Nashe’, as well as lands in neighbouring Ashurst and West Grinstead; some of these Roberts leased from Francis Shirley, in whose favour he had deposed during Shirley’s dispute with the 9th Lord la Warr in 1552. Of sufficient local standing to have been elected with Pellatt (although not to have taken precedence over him on the return), this John Roberts could nevertheless hardly have been the target of the legal proceedings aimed at the Member for Steyning, along with many other Members, Pellatt included, after the Parliament was over, in particular the outlawry pronounced in 1558, nearly three years after the Steyning man’s death. It seems to follow that the borough conformed with the Queen’s request only in respect of Pellatt, and that his fellow-Member was not John Roberts of Steyning but a namesake from Kent.3
  • This John Roberts, a younger son in a family settled near Cranbrook, owed his advancement to a connexion with his eminent neighbour (Sir) Walter Hendley. It was probably his father whom Hendley named overseer of his will and his elder brother Thomas was to become the fourth husband of Hendley’s widow. She had been born Margery Pigott, and in her will of 1587 she was to call John Roberts’s widow her niece; the two were living together when Roberts made his own will in August 1573. It is Roberts’s kinship with Margery Hendley which furnishes the most likely explanation of his election for Steyning, for her stepdaughter Anne married, not long before his death in 1547, Richard Covert of Slaugham and thus became the daughter-in-law of John Covert. As one of the 3rd Duke of Norfolk’s servants in Sussex, and a man of independent standing there, John Covert sat in several Parliaments, including that of November 1554, and could well have been instrumental in procuring his kinsman’s return on that occasion, as he probably was to be when Walter Hendley’s servant Robert Byng came in for Steyning a year later.4
  • The case for regarding this John Roberts as the Member is strengthened by the course of events which arose out of this Parliament. Both Members for Steyning were prosecuted in the King’s bench for quitting it without leave before its dissolution, but the proceedings against them differed in significant ways. Whereas Pellatt, described in the information laid by the attorney-general as ‘of Steyning, in the county of Sussex, gentleman’, was first distrained for non-appearance and then made his fine in Easter term 1556, Roberts is described in the information merely as of Sussex, gentleman, the blank left for his domicile remaining unfilled, and after neither appearing nor being distrained he was eventually outlawed on 13 Oct. 1558. Not only is it hard to believe that he and Pellatt would have been handled so differently if both had belonged to Steyning, but Roberts’s treatment by process leading to outlawry instead of by distraint—in this respect he was unique among all the defendants—implies that he either had, or was represented as having, no property in Sussex on which distraint could be levied. By what looks like more than a coincidence the sheriff who was first called upon to serve the writ of venire facias upon the defaulting Sussex Members was John Covert. If Covert had endorsed the writ for Roberts non inventus, thus professing himself unable to find Roberts within his area of jurisdiction, he could have spared his kinsman the burden of distraint at the deferred cost of setting in motion the process which issued, 13 law-terms and three-and-a-half years later, in the outlawry; and this ultimate retribution, exacted five weeks before the Queen’s death, brought to an end all the cases still outstanding, Roberts could have evaded either by suing out a pardon (of which no record has been found) or by simply ignoring it.5
  • Roberts’s settlement at Ticehurst, where his brother Thomas and Margery Hendley also established themselves, may have followed his marriage ‘on St. Andrew’s day’ in a year unknown. It was probably he who in February 1568 was granted a 21-year lease of the manor of Snave, near New Romney, and adjacent lands at a rent of £76 a year; as the manor itself had been one of those bought from the crown in 1539 by Walter Hendley. By his will of 11 Aug. 1573 Roberts left his lands in Hawkhurst and Ticehurst to his wife so long as she and Margery Hendley lived together, but stipulated that part of the income should be used to maintain his son Thomas; after Lady Hendley’s death this son was to receive other benefits and his mother to occupy the house at Boarzell in Ticehurst. Roberts also provided for his daughter Marjorie, gave to Walter Hendley, Sir Walter’s nephew, an annuity of £10, and named his wife and her brother Francis Pigott executors. He died in 1573, was buried at Ticehurst and the will was proved in November 1576.6
  • From:




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Thomas Roberts, of Glassenbury's Timeline

July 10, 1494
Glassenbury, Cranbrook, Kent, England
July 10, 1494
September 21, 1494
September 21, 1494
September 21, 1494
October 31, 1523
Age 29
Cranbrook, Kent, UK
Age 29
Age 31
Glassenbury, Kent, England