Castle Donington


Victoria County History



W.G. Hoskins (editor) assisted by R.A. McKinley

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'Hospitals: Castle Donington', A History of the County of Leicestershire: Volume 2 (1954), pp. 39-40. URL: Date accessed: 27 November 2014.


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The Hospital of St. John the Baptist at Castle Donington is traditionally stated to have been founded by John, Constable of Chester and Baron of Halton. (fn. 1) The tradition is supported by the statement in the Matriculus of the archdeaconry of Leicester that the hospital was founded by J., formerly Constable of Chester, (fn. 2) and it may well be true. If the account given in the Matriculus is correct, the founder must have been John, Constable of Chester, who died in 1190. (fn. 3) It was further noted in the Matriculus (fn. 4) that the hospital ought to have contained thirteen brothers, with a number of sisters; that the brothers had no regular habit, and lived under no rule; and that the hospital received a tithe of nine-tenths of the sheaves of the constable's demesne at Donington, (fn. 5) besides the tithe of all the hay from the demesne. In the 13th century the hospital was receiving payments from the Cheshire manors of Halton and Runcorn. (fn. 6) It was stated in 1311 that the hospital held the tithes of the Earl of Lincoln's (fn. 7) demesne at Donington, with a little property there, in return for finding a chaplain to celebrate daily in the chapel of Donington Castle, and for maintaining twelve poor persons in the hospital. (fn. 8)

Nothing is known of the internal affairs of the hospital. In 1535 its clear yearly income was estimated at only £3. 13s. 4d. (fn. 9) The certificate returned under Henry VIII's Chantry Act (fn. 10) gives the hospital's annual income as £3, and states that though the hospital was founded to sustain certain poor men, none was then in residence. (fn. 11) The hospital was dissolved under the Chantry Act of Edward VI. (fn. 12)

Wardens Of Castle Donington Hospital

Elias, occurs before 1190. (fn. 13)
Umfridus, occurs about 1220. (fn. 14)
Henry of Leycestre, appointed about 1315, ejected 1322. (fn. 15)
John of Wodeford, appointed 1322, (fn. 16) resigned 1343. (fn. 17)
John of Heselarton, appointed 1343. (fn. 18)
John of Maderseye, appointed 1347. (fn. 19)
Richard of Helpryngham, appointed 1348, but appointment revoked in the same year. (fn. 20)
Thomas le Moigne, appointed 1348. (fn. 21)
John Lucas, resigned 1409. (fn. 22)
William Pollard, appointed 1409. (fn. 23)
Robert Lowes, appointed 1415. (fn. 24)
Thomas Lyserisc, resigned 1444. (fn. 25)
Richard Haysnape, appointed 1444. (fn. 26)
John Menaude, appointed 1474, resigned 1482. (fn. 27)
John Boteler, appointed 1482, (fn. 28) occurs 1485. (fn. 29)
Thomas Burgoyn, occurs 1535. (fn. 30)

No seal is known.


1 Nichols, Leics. iii, 780, citing the Donington Town Bk. of 1634.
2 Rot. Hugonis de Welles, ed. W. P. W. Phillimore, i, 252.
3 Complete Peerage, vii, 677.
4 Compiled c. 1220.
5 i.e. the hosp. obtained 1 / 0 of all sheaves remaining after the normal parochial tithe had been taken.
6 Rot. Hugonis de Welles, i. 252. See also Cal. Close, 1237-42, 223, 411; and Cal. Lib., 1245-51, 245.
7 The earl was the descendant of the Constables of Chest.: Complete Peerage, vii, 677.
8 G. F. Farnham and A. Hamilton Thompson, 'Castle Donington', T.L.A.S. xiv, 49; Cal. Inq. p.m. v, 156.
9 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), iv, 179.
10 37 Hen. VIII, c. 4.
11 A. Hamilton Thompson, 'The Chant. Cert. for Leics.', Assoc. Arch. Soc. Rep. and Papers, xxx, 505.
12 For the sale of the hosp.'s lands, see ibid. xxx, 534-6.
13 Nichols, Leics. iii, 780.
14 Rot. Hugonis de Welles, i, 252. Ric. of Stavensby, said to have been warden in 1226 (Nichols, op. cit. iii, 780), was the parson of the par. ch. of Donington: Rot. Hugonis de Welles, ii, 305.
15 T.L.A.S. xiv, 50.
16 Cal. Pat., 1321-4, 95.
17 Ibid., 1343-5, 33. He exchanged benefices with his successor.
18 Ibid.
19 Cal. Pat., 1345-8, 266.
20 Ibid., 1348-50, 87, 101.
21 Ibid. 101.
22 R. Somerville, 'D. of Lanc. Presentations, 13991-485', Bull. of Inst. of Hist. Research, xviii, 74.
23 Ibid.
24 Ibid.
25 Ibid.
26 Ibid.
27 Ibid.
28 Ibid.
29 Rot. Parl. vi, 373.
30 Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), iv, 179.