Sir Richard SANDYS

Died: AFT Jun 1538

Father: William SANDYS (Sir)

Mother: Margaret CHENEY

Married 1: ?


1. John SANDYS

Married 2: Denise ? (w. of Walter Champion) 1534

The details in this biography come from the History of Parliament, a biographical dictionary of Members of the House of Commons.

Born by 1488, younger son of Sir William Sandys of The Vyne, Sherborne St. John, Hants by Margaret, daughter of John Cheney of Shurland, Isle of Sheppey, Kent. Knighted 1 Nov 1523. Member of Parliament for Hampshire 1529. Gentleman Usher by 1509, to Princess Elizabeth 1536; bailiff, scunage of Calais and islands of Coulogne in marches of Calais 1521-death; commissioner subsidy, Hants 1523, 1524; other commissions 1530-1535; Joint Lieutenant, Clarendon forest, Hants and Wilts. 1524-death; Justice of Peace, Hants 1529-death; knight of the body by 1533.

Sir Richard Sandys doubtless owed his election to the Parliament of 1529 either directly or indirectly to the King. The writ for Hampshire was one of those which Henry VIII had sent to him at Windsor, where Sandys may well have been in attendance. Both in his own right, and as the brother of William, 1st Baron Sandys, one of the King's favourite courtiers, he was a natural choice for the knighthood of a shire in which his family held a leading place.

Although Richard Sandys succeeded to all the lands which his father had purchased, he seems not to have had an establishment of his own but to have lived in his brother's household. He was a gentleman usher at Henry VII's funeral. In 1513 he accompanied his brother on the expedition to France, and in the following Jan the two were at Portsmouth preparing for a French attack. From 1517 Lord Sandys was frequently at Calais, and Richard was probably there with him: both served under Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, in the expedition of 1523 and Richard was one of those knighted at its close. In that year he was named a subsidy commissioner for Hampshire, but 'was beyond the sea in the King's wars' when his own assessment came to be made. He was at Calais during Cardinal Wolsey's visit in 1527 and the King's in Oct 1532. Nothing is known of Sandy's part in the proceedings of the Parliament, but during its lifetime he remained closely associated with his brother. On 6 May 1533 he and his son John were granted the office of bailiff of the scunage of Calias which he had held alone since 1521: when his right to the office was challenged by the mayor of Calais, Lord Sandys wrote on his behalf to the deputy, Viscount Lisle, assuring his that Sir Richard had long been bailiff both of the scunage and of Coulogne. In Jan 1535 the same writer informed Cromwell in an indignant letter that his brother had been attacked the day before in the Queen's park of Stratfield Mortimer, Berkshire, by 'young Trapnell', son-in-law to Sir Thomas Englefield, and six of his servants, as assault for which he demanded redress. This was a reversal of the role imputed to Sandys in a Star Chamber case in Wolseys time, when Francis Digneley complained of an attack by him in Alice Holt forest, Sussex.

Sandys probably sat in the parliament of 1536 in accordance with the King's request for the re-election of the previous Members. During the northern rebellion he was one of the gentlemen appointed to attend upon the King. In the same year he became a gentleman usher to Princess Elizabeth and he was present at the christening of Prince Edward on 15 Oct 1537 and the funeral of Queen Jane a month later.

He was alive on 3 Jun 1538, when he witnessed a deposition against a priest who looked forward to an end of the royal supremacy, but was dead by 23 Jun 1539, when Lord Sandys wrote to Cromwell about a dispute with his widow. Sandys marriage to this lady, the widow of a rich alderman of London, had greatly improved his financial position. After his death she complained to Cromwell that 'she was like to go a begging' because her husband and Lord Sandys had between them 'consumed and expended of her goods above 7,000 pounds': this her brother-in-law denied, claiming that although not obliged to do so he had agreed to give her 80 pounds for life, an offer which she had first accepted and then refused.

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