Sir Thomas PALMER of Angmering

Born: 8 Dec 1542, Angmering, Sussex, England

Died: AFT 1608

Father: John PALMER (Sir Knight)

Mother: Mary SANDYS

Married 1: Mary PALMER BEF 1565, Angmering, Sussex, England


1. Henry PALMER (b. 1565 - bur. 17 Jun 1566)

2. John PALMER

3. Catherine PALMER (b. 13 May 1568 - bur. 20 Jun 1568)

4. Thomas PALMER (Sir Knight)

5. William PALMER

6. Richard PALMER (b. 4 Oct 1574)

7. Henry PALMER

8. Dorothy PALMER

9. Walter PALMER (AFT 1578)

Married 2: Alice ADERNE (b. ABT 1550 - bur. 23 Aug 1605)  AFT 1576, Angmering, Sussex, England

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

Second but first surv. son of John Palmer of Angmering, being o.s. by his second wife, Mary, dau. of William, 1st Baron Sandys. educ. ?G. Inn 1562. Married first Mary, dau. of Sir Thomas Palmer of Parham, 7s. 1da.; and secondly Alice Aderne. suc. fa. 1563. Kntd. 1573.

J.p. Suss. 1572; sheriff, Surr. and Suss. 1572-3; dep. lt. Suss. Jun 1585-at least 1591.

The Palmers had been established in Sussex from at least the beginning of the fourteenth century, and towards its end a fortunate marriage brought them lands in Angmering. It was there that the senior line resided under Elizabeth. Collateral branches of considerable influence also appeared, after the dissolution of the monasteries, at Parham, Sussex, and Wingham, Kent.

Much of the west of the parish, part of Ecclesden manor in Angmering, belonged in the Middle Ages to Fecamp Abbey and later to Syon Abbey. The lands concerned included the area known as Selden. In 1540 Ecclesden manor was granted to John Palmer of Angmering, together with its appurtenances in Patching but excluding lands later called Barnstake and Surgeons fields. The Palmer lands in Patching were partly or wholly dispersed in the early 17th century. In 1605 Sir Thomas Palmer, the son of John Palmer, granted lands in Patching to Sir John Caryll, who died seised of lands there and in Ecclesden in 1613 [Sussex Record Society 70] In 1608 he also granted away lands in Selden which had formerly been part of the demesne lands of Ecclesden manor, and of which 10 ˝ acres were successfully claimed in 1850 to be tithe-free as former monastic land. Palmer's son, another Sir Thomas, sold a messuageand 40 acres in Selden to Robert and Sibyl Grinyer.

Palmer was elected to Parliament for the county at a time when there was little competition. He served on committees dealing with the maintenance of the navy and the increase of tillage (21 May 1571), and the sheriffs of Surrey and Sussex (28 May). On 12 Jul 1574 he was sent to the Fleet for slandering Henry Fitzalan, Earl of Arundel. He was released 27 Jul.

During the 1580s, he became deputy lieutenant of Sussex in partnership with Thomas Shirley and Walter Covert, and was given a variety of local duties, including the disarming of Sussex recusants and the regulation of grain. In 1585 he took charge of the armour of William Shelley, a Sussex gentleman indicted for treason, and was granted some of his land. He was responsible for a survey of the Sussex coast in preparation against invasion in 1587. He was senior knight of the shire in the 1589 Parliament and thus entitled to serve on the subsidy committee appointed on 11 Feb. He was granted leave of absence ‘to repair home ... for his special occasions of business’, 22 Feb, but had evidently returned by 27 Feb when he was nominated to attend the Lords over the purveyors bill. However, it may be that the clerk confused Sir Thomas with Andrew Palmer, who is also noted as being concerned with the purveyors bill. In May 1591 he was still a deputy lieutenant of Sussex, described as residing mainly at Blackwall, near London.

He built a new house at Angmering, known as ‘New Place’, which descended to his third son, Thomas, his eldest having died an infant and his second having become a gipsy. A fourth son, William, became a captain in the Netherlands, perhaps through the influence of Sir Thomas Shirley. Palmer was nominated to the Stepney Vestry in 1612 and marked ‘dead’ in or before 1616.


J.E.M.: PALMER, Thomas I (1542-by 1616), of Angmering, Suss. and Blackwall, Mdx.

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