Dorchester Abbey, Oxfordshire

William “The Younger” Valence

Dorchester Abbey in Oxfordshire worth visiting both for the architecture and the two gisants: William “The Younger” Valence and Hugh Segrave (probably).

William “The Younger” Valence was the half-nephew of Henry of Winchester III King England. Henry’s mother Isabella Angouleme, Queen Consort England, wife of John “Lackland” I King England, was also the mother of William Valence’s father, also, William, 1st Earl of Pembroke.


William “The Younger” Valence


William was killed at the Battle of Llandeilo Fawr returning after being ambushed by the Welsh after having taken Carreg Cennen Castle.

A very fine gisant, c 1282, notable for the finely detailed chain mail, the crossed legs, possible signifying a crusader, and the hand holding the sword. Some of the original colouring remains.

The other gisant, less fine, c 1387, is believed to be Hugh 2nd Baron Segrave


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Dorchester Abbey, Oxfordshire


Robert 2nd Baron Hungerford, Salisbury Cathedral

Of the three Hungerford generations that include Walter 1st Baron, Robert 2nd Baron and Robert 3rd Baron, Robert 2nd Baron appears to have had a relatively quiet life.

Link to Hungerford Family Tree

His father, Walter 1st Baron, KG, was Speaker of the House of Commons in 29 Jan 1414. Fought during the Hundred Years War including Agincourt in Oct 1415 and the Siege of Rouen in 1418. Thereafter he became Steward of the King’s Household and was held in sufficiently high regard to be appointed executor of Henry V’s will. At Henry VI’s coronation in Paris he was given the honour of being Carver of the King’s food.

Photos of Salisbury Cathedral

Robert 2nd Baron Hungerford’s son Robert 3rd Baron took part in the last stages of  the Hundred Years War being captured and subsequently ransomed at the Battle of Castillon where John ‘Old Talbot’ was killed to the dismay of both the French and English. As a keen Lancastrian he supported Henry VI during the Wars of the Roses surviving Towton only to be captured at the Battle of Hexham and subsequently beheaded at Newcastle.

All three were buried at the no longer extant Hungerford Chapel at Salisbury Cathedral with Robert, 3rd Baron Hungerford’s, monument being moved to the nave.

Robert’s great grand daughter Mary married Edward 2nd Baron Hastings who were the grand parents of Francis 2nd Baron Huntingdon (Hastings Chapel, St Helen’s Church, Ashby de la Zouche, Leicestershire). Francis 2nd Baron Hungerford is, is therefore, the 3 x Great Grandfather of Francis 2nd Baron Huntingdon.


Robert 2nd Baron Hungerford in the Nave of Salisbury Cathedral




Hastings Chapel, St Helen’s Church, Ashby de la Zouche

Recently visited St Helen’s Church in Ashby de la Zouche to see the monuments in the Hastings Chapel, in particular, the monument to Francis 2nd Earl Huntingdon and his wife Catherine Pole.

Hastings Chapel, St Helen’s Church, Ashby de la Zouche, Leicestershire

A very well preserved monument with some fascinating detail including the Manticore, the Hasting’s badge, at the Earl’s feet, and the garter on his left leg, just below the knee, and on his left shoulder.

Francis 2nd Earl Huntingdon in the Hastings Chapel Ashby de la Zouche
Francis was descended from Edward III in multiple ways as was his wife Catherine Pole. His ancestors included most of the primary families of England: Camoys, Neville, Beaufort, Montagu, Holland, Hungerford, Percy, Stafford, Beauchamp, Berkeley, Woodville as well as Luxembourg. Francis and Catherine had eleven children together. Catherine’s younger sister married Francis’ younger brother Thomas.

Francis took a prominent role at King Edward VI’s coronation on the 20 Feb 1547, carrying St Edward’s staff, as well as at the tournament that followed.

Francis was invested as a Knight of the Garter on 13 Oct 1549, the same day on which he arrested Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset, who was subsequently beheaded Jan 1552, with his nephew, King Edward VI, casually noting ‘the duke of Somerset had his head cut off upon Tower Hill between eight and nine o’clock in the morning’.

Francis was imprisoned in 1553 for having supported Lady Jane Grey. Pardoned by Queen Mary I soon after he demonstrated his allegiance to Queen Mary I by, on her orders, arresting Lady Jane Grey’s father, Henry, who, initially being pardoned, was subsequently beheaded 23 Feb 1554 for his support of Wyatt’s attempt to prevent Queen Mary I marrying King Philip I of Spain.

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Detail of the Earl’s Coronet and helm.

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Detail of the Manticore on which the Earl’s feet rest. The Manticore being the badge of the Hasting’s family.


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Detail showing the Earl’s Knight of the Garter Badge.

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Monument to Warner Francis John Plantagenet Hastings 14th Earl Huntingdon

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Monument to Francis John Clarence Westenra Plantagenet Hastings 15th Earl Huntingdon

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