Papers of the Stapleton (incorporating Errington and Tempest) Family, Lords Beaumont, of Carlton Towers

Scope and Content

U DDCA contains largely title deeds and other documents relating to the estates of the Stapleton family, especially in Carlton and Drax in the West Riding of Yorkshire, in Aiskew and Bedale in the North Riding and Berwick on the Hill and Pontiland in Northumberland (the latter came from the Errington family). The deposit also contains a small number of family papers and a portfolio of Norman charters which includes the oldest document in Hull University Archives and a number of deeds relating to monastic houses in Normandy (further details below).

The estate papers are divided into counties as follows: Yorkshire, West Riding: Askham Bryan (1583-1811); Burn (1666-1841); Camblesforth (1554-1776); Carlton (1557-1892) including the marriage settlement of Richard Lowther and Elizabeth Lambe (1639), the enclosure bill and award of 1808, lease books and estate appointments of the eighteenth century and an 1873 'birdseye view' of Carlton Towers as remodelled by Pugin; Drax (1487-1839) including an abstract of the title of the Nelson family 1337-1654 and a list of members of this family, the Drax enclosure act of 1773 and the marriage settlements of Christopher Helmsley and Elizabeth Wright (1601), John Nelson and Frances Rainbow (1631), Philip Twistleton and Anne Brograve (1648); Eggbrough (1644); Hirst Courtney (1652-1799); Quosquo (1626-1784); Selby (1667-1852) including a copy of the 'Coucher Book of Selby' of 1667 and a prospectus of the Selby Mechanics' Institute of 1852; Temple Hurst (1630-1689). Yorkshire, North Riding: Aiskew (1589-1786); Bedale (1596-1842) including a 1653 order to remove obstructions to forfeited estates, 1786 plans and field books of the parish and an 1842 cropping book; Burrill with Cowling (1673-1822); Ellingtons (1556-1674).

Northumberland: Berwick on the Hill (1611-1744) including a 1611 and 1613 manor court roll and title deeds of the Errington family; East and West Mason (1663-1686); Little Callerton (1721, 1740); Pontiland (1595-1775) largely comprising Errington family material. Other counties: Flintshire (1639); one rent roll for Drimnagh (1704-1711); Middlesex (1659, 1752); Nottinghamshire (1538); Yorkshire, East Riding (1796, 1801); various townships (1586-1848) including material relating to John Twistleton of Drax in the 17th century, the Errington family and an original bundle of material about the building of railway lines over Lord Beaumont's land in the 1840s.

The remainder of the deposit is divided into the following sections: accounts and vouchers (1616-1853) including the record of payment of seventeenth-century recusancy fines and accounts from an 1853 continental holiday; bonds (1587-1807); legal material (1612-1794) including Elizabeth Stapleton's bill in the court of wards 1612-35, bills in chancery in the 1640s and 1650s about estates in Bedale and the 1726 bill in chancery of John Errington about his title to the manor of Berwick; miscellaneous material (1712-1957) including the armorial pedigree of the Venables Vernon family, a schedule of deeds about an Errington marriage in 1712, eighteenth century material about roads, navigation and building a bridge at Selby, a 1782 cellar book and an 1836 communication from Dr William Travis about the opening of a tumulus in Scarborough as well as some other material relating to the proceedings of the Society of Antiquarians and Archaeologists in 1848; rentals (1658-1843); surveys and valuations (1600-1848) including the 1845 field book of Carlton and Drax.

U DDCA also contains settlements (1638-1770) including the marriage settlements of Nicholas and Frances Errington (c.1630s); Nathaniel Nelson and Anne Watton (1638); Ferdinando Latus and Henrietta Tempest (1700); John Denham and Elizabeth Richardson (1760); William Witham and Winifred Stapleton (1770). The wills in U DDCA are those of Richard Gawen (1584); Richard Thekestone (1604); John Nelson (1611); William Harum (1618); the Reverend Nelson (1635); Robert Hembrough (1636); William Motherby (1637); Peter Dickinson (1648); Thomas Lawty (1650); Julianne Meynell (1687); Elizabeth Fisher (1724); Ralph Clavering (1746); Hester Stapleton (1750); Elizabeth Mompesson (1751); Mary Hannan (1751).

A section of 'various deeds' (late 11th century-1852) includes the 1699 special marriage license of Nicholas Errington and Mary Sandys and a 1748 legal opinion about the marriage settlement of Nicholas Errington and Charlotte Eure. This section also contains an important portfolio of medieval charters (U DDCA/37/46) relating to monastic houses and lands in Normandy as well as lands in Carlton. It includes the 1087 confirmation by William II and Duke Robert II of Normandy of an exchange of lands in the county of Bayeaux; the 1365 sale to Miles de Stapleton of lands in Bedale by Queen Philippa; the 1412 gift of Miles de Stapleton to Prince John; a page from the thirteenth-century obit book of the Earls of Chester and notes on the portfolio made in 1947 by Father James Forbes of Ampleforth Abbey.

Correspondence in U DDCA includes ten letters to Sir Miles Stapleton dated 1689-1700 and other miscellaneous letters of the seventeenth century including some of the Twistleton family. Eighteenth- and nineteenth-century letters are largely about estate affairs to various members of the Stapleton family and also to Charles Henry Tempest.

U DDCA2 is a large deposit which includes material relating to the Tempest family and Marrick Priory (see further details below). Estate papers are arranged alphabetically for the three Ridings of Yorkshire as follows: Acomb (1473); a Percy family charter for Airey Bank in the parish of Whitby (c.1230); Aiskew (1686, 1770); Askham Bryan (1614-1712) including the sale for £1000 of the manor from Marmaduke Constable to Nicholas Stapleton; Bedale (1637-1839); Bowes (late 12th century); Bramley (mid 13th century); Brayton (1686); Burnsall and Thorpe (1376); Camblesforth (1716-1815); Carlton and Carlton estate (13th century-1959) including the licence granted by Boniface IX to Brian de Stapleton and the inhabitants of Carlton to bury their dead at Carlton instead of Snaith, the 1391 grant for the chapel to be built and a large amount of nineteenth century estate material including tenancy agreements, accounts, details of farming and brickmaking, details about bridges and electricity, an 1839 fire insurance policy, estate correspondence 1878-1942 and files on such things as the 1916 death duties of the dowager Lady Beaumont; Cononley (1369); Cowick (1869); Drax (1562-1674) including the marriage settlement of Francis Baxter and Katherine Lovell (1582); Eland (1373); Ellerton in Swaledale (12th century); Elslack (early 13th century-1569) including the will of Lionel Dawtry (1421); the forest of Galtre (1300); Glusburn (late 13th century-1430); Guisborough (1474); Hemlington (1243); Hirst Courtney (1657); Howden (1685); Howe (1272); Kirk Leavington (1561); Leake (1266); Lofthouse (12th century); Newton (1338); Norton (1567); Pontefract (1413, 1420); Preston (1805); Quosquo (1805); Ryhill (1337); Tickhill (1402); Waplington (c.1200); Whitwell (1231).

The estate papers for Yorkshire contain within them papers for Marrick Priory. U DDCA2/29 contains the founding gift of the priory by Roger de Aske 1154-8 and a number of confirmation charters as well as a gift by Robert de Brus of a toft in Hartlepool in the mid-twelfth century. Most of the later charters also take this form thus indicating the property owned by the priory as well as income pledged by local families. Most of these documents were published in John Gough Nichols (ed.) Collectanea Topographica et Genealogica, v (1838) pp. 100-24 and 221-59. Five of the items published are now in the Brotherton Library in Leeds which holds a complementary archive for Marrick Priory.

U DDCA2/29/108 is a rare survival - an account roll of Cicely de Blakeston, bursar, Agnes Gower, sacrist and Agnes de Wenslaw, granger, covering the period Michaelmas 1415 to Michaelmas 1416. This has been translated by John Tillotson and published in his account of the convent: Marrick Priory: a nunnery in late medieval Yorkshire (1989). Some rentals also survive for 1457, 1497 and 1511.

Post-reformation material for Marrick Priory in U DDCA2/29 includes letters patent exempting the priory from dissolution in 1536 and the later crown lease of priory land in 1542. Title deeds, leases and bonds exist through to 1684. U DDCA2/29/134 is a copy of the 1838 publication of the charters in Nichols.

Property papers for other places are as follows: Elwick in county Durham (1649) and the special indulgence of Anthony Beck Bishop of Durham to Guisborough Priory for a canon to serve the chapel at Hartlepool (1309); Ireland (1722); London (1486, 1627, early 20th century); Northumberland (1569-1740) largely comprising Errington family papers including the 1611 sale by Ralph Eure to Mark Errington of Callerton and the marriage settlement of Nicholas Errington and Margaret Widdrington (1629); Oxfordshire (1636); Scotland (1352) the letters patent of Edward Balliol, king of Scotland, granting to William de Aldburgh the barony of Kells; the share of Thomas Stapleton in a sugar plantation called Strawberry Hill in the West Indies (1795); various townships (c.1125-1895) including a 1345 decree of the Archbishop of York, early fifteenth century family charters and some eighteenth century manorial records for Carlton and Camblesforth contained in a large volume which also contains miscellaneous printed material, certificates and photographs.

Other sections in U DDCA2 are as follows: accounts and vouchers (1656-1893) comprising the household account books of Miles Stapleton 1656-1705 (see Cox, 'The household books...') and household account books of the nineteenth century bound in seventeenth century leases and deeds which are also still legible; bonds (1477-1843); commissions (1814); maps and plans (17th century-1908); surveys, valuations and rentals (1618-1942) including a 1618 survey of the manor of Bedale and eighteenth and nineteenth century rentals of Carlton and Bedale; various deeds (1421-1870).

There is a large amount of correspondence in U DDCA2 particularly of the 8th Lord Beaumont. For example, there are 450 letters to him from George Gibson Davy about estate matters (1839-1849), though there are also some personal letters including one from him to his sister about his marriage. There are some letters to the 9th Lord Beaumont and circa 200 letters to his wife, Violet Isaacson.

A section of settlements (1557-1792) includes the marriage settlements of Jasper Mitford and Margaret Hedworth (1557), Richard Stapleton and Elizabeth Pierpont (1587), Gilbert Stapleton and Eleanor Gascoigne (1617), Nicholas Errington (Stapleton) and Mary Sandys (1699), Miles Stapleton and Catherine Dunn (1765). A small section of wills has those of Robert Eland (1638), Ellen Stapleton (1666), John Stapleton alias Errington (1749) and Hester Stapleton (1750).

There is a lot of genealogical material in several remaining sections of U DDCA2. Pedigrees of the Stapleton and Stapleton-Errington family are to be found as well a pedigrees of the Bertie (Dukes of Leeds), Gascoigne (of Parlington), Scroope and Stuteville families. A separately catalogued section on the Beaumont peerage contains a large number of primary documents as follows: correspondence such as that between Nicholas Errington and his uncle Miles Stapleton about his marriage to Mary Sandys and letters from Thomas Stapleton to the Duke of Portland (1796-1801) and a large number of family marriage settlements and wills incorporating those of the Errington family. Also included are the letters patent declaring Mona Josephine Tempest Stapleton to be Baroness Beaumont in 1896. Some miscellaneous material includes extracts of the records of the English Benedictine monks at Douai about Gregory Stapleton (1642-1680) and of the English Benedictine convent at Cambrai about Mary Stapleton (1648-1668). A separately catalogued miscellaneous section in U DDCA2 contains further Catholic material such as the authentication of relics, some political material about Gladstone, Lord Beaumont's London visitors' book (1846-52), menus, visiting cards, some photographs and printed material and the latter includes an 1891 history of Selby Abbey.

U DDCA2/60 is a section relating to the Tempest family of Bolton in Lancashire (see further details below).

U DDCA3 is a small deposit of more modern estate and family papers with sections as follows: Yorkshire: some sale documents for Bellasize (1904); leases and title documents for Carlton (1737-1894); a conveyance for Cowick (1909); a schedule of documents about Marrick Priory (c.1630, 1694); a conveyance for London (1894); some title deeds for Burton on Trent, Staffordshire (1801-1857); an 1816 copy of 13th century registers of the diocese of Coutances, France; various townships (1770-1910) especially mortgage documents. Accounts (1762-1918) in U DDCA3 include servants' wages for 1762-1784 and death duties on the estate of Lady Beaumont (Isabella) in 1916. Rentals (1771-1840) include a Bedale and Aiskew steward's account book 1771-1791. A miscellaneous section includes family schoolbooks and inventories. There is also the marriage settlement of Miles Thomas Stapleton and Isabella Ann Brown (1844) plus the wills of Thomas Hunsley (1811), Thomas Stapleton (1812), Miles Stapleton (1895), Isabella Ann Stapleton (1904). There is quite extensive estate correspondence for the 9th Lord Beamont (additional to that found in U DDCA2 and dated 1894-1903). There are two sections on the marriage settlements and financial arrangements of Mary Ethel Stapleton, nee Tempest, who married the 10th Lord Beaumont and her daughter Mona Josephine Tempest Stapleton who married Bernard Edward, 3rd Lord Howard of Glossop.

The papers of the Tempest family of Bolton (Heaton, Rumworth, Lostock, Deane) and Broughton Hall are embedded within the larger archive of the Stapleton family. The integral deposits of the family are catalogued separately as U DDCA2/60 and U DDCA4, containing circa 2000 items each. The remainder of the Tempest material is scattered throughout the rest of the Stapleton archive.

U DDCA2/60 contains a large amount of estate material for the last quarter of the nineteenth century. There are circa 1750 letters to Charles Henry Tempest (1885-1894) about his estates and a plan of his estate ownership. In addition, there are estate rental records for the 1890s and household vouchers for the 1870s and 1880s. U DDCA2/60 also contains the 1866 letters patent granting Charles Henry Tempest a baronetcy and accounts relating to the marriage settlement of Mary Ethel Tempest, his daughter and sole heir. An address of sympathy from the tenants of the Bolton estates upon the death of Mary Ethel Tempest's husband shortly after her marriage is also in the deposit.

U DDCA4 contains estate material of the Tempest family as follows: Cheshire (1851-1880) comprising estate correspondence and title deed material of Jemima Tempest (nee de Trafford) relating to Hatherton in the parish of Wyburnbury; Gloucestershire (1723-1891) including plans and considerable correspondence relating to 1-6 Fauconberg Terrace in Cheltenham; Lancashire (1747-1897) including the 1888 sale of Uplands Hall, a plan of Lancashire railways and the will of Henry Blundell (1809); Yorkshire (1866-1871) including inventories of Broughton Hall. U DDCA4 also contains the accounts of family homes, Newland Hall and Uplands Hall, as well as the estate correspondence of Jemima Tempest relating to her residence at Uplands Hall. Her will and its codicils dated 1870-1881 are in the collection as is her marriage settlement to Henry Tempest, father of Charles Henry Tempest. The divorce papers of Charles Henry Tempest are at U DDCA4/8 and all the settlement of his estate is in U DDCA4/9. U DDCA4/5 is a collection of some 500 letters and other material relating to the financial affairs of his son, Henry Arthur Joseph Tempest, brother of Mary Ethel. Miscellaneous material includes an obituary for Jemima Tempest.

U DDCA/31/6 has a further 12 letters of Charles Henry Tempest about estate affairs and U DDCA3 has further material relating to the financial affairs of his daughter, Mary Ethel, and her daughter, Mona Josephine, who inherited the Stapleton estates as well as those of Bolton.

U DDCA5 comprises records from the manors of Carlton and Camblesforth from the 18th-20th centuries; correspondence and other papers relating to the sale of Carlton Towers in the 1890s; and a small section of miscellaneous material thought to have belonged to Alma Grossman, who purchased the lordship of the manors in 1956.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Stapletons of Yorkshire were originally from Richmondshire, their name deriving from Stapleton-on-Tees, a village between Richmond and Darlington. Nicholas de Stapleton, a judge on the King's Bench, died in 1290 leaving a son Miles de Stapleton, by his wife, Margaret Bassett, who was buried at Drax. The Stapletons settled in Yorkshire in this generation and several branches of the family developed at Carlton and Bedale, and then Wighill and Myton. Miles de Stapleton was the common ancestor (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Chetwynd-Stapylton, 'The Stapletons of Yorkshire', pp. 66-7; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.10).

Miles de Stapleton served in the Gascon and Scottish wars of Edward I and was one of the men entrusted with the education of the king's son. He was created 1st baron, Lord Stapleton, and was called to parliament. He increased his family's interests in Yorkshire considerably. His eldest son was betrothed to a daughter of the Earl of Richmond and his second son to one of the daughters of Brian Fitzalan, lord of Bedale. His first wife, Sybil or Isabel, was the daughter of John de Bellew and Laderine, sister of Peter de Brus. Carlton came into the family as part of her inheritance. Towards the end of his life Miles de Stapleton sided with Lancaster but when he was called to muster for the relief of Stirling he came to the aid of the king. He and two of his sons were killed at Bannockburn in 1314 (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.10).

Miles de Stapleton's eldest son, Nicholas, (b. circa 1290), inherited his Carlton estates and his younger son, Gilbert, married Agnes Fitzalan and through this match this branch of the family came into Bedale and Askham Bryan. Their descendants also ultimately became lords of Carlton as well as those branches of the family at Wighill. Nicholas de Stapleton inherited also his father's title becoming 2nd baron, Lord Carlton. He fought in the wars of Scotland and was summoned to parliament in 1343 but died in the same year. By his first wife, Isabel, he had four known issue and his eldest son, Miles, was born circa 1319. He was escheator and high sheriff of Yorkshire and was summoned as 3rd baron to parliament in 1358. He escorted David Bruce, king of Scotland, from Newcastle to London after the battle of Nevill's Cross and died in 1372. He married Isabel Vavasour and had one son and two daughters, one of whose descendants became claimant to the barony of Stapleton when it terminated with the death of his son, at the age of only 23 years, in 1374. The Carlton lands, which this Thomas Stapleton, 4th baron, had inherited for only two years passed by the tail male to his cousin, a descendant of Gilbert de Stapleton (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.10).

Gilbert de Stapleton had by his wife Agnes Fitzalan at least six children and his first and second sons became two of the most distinguished members of the family. The eldest son, Miles de Stapleton, inherited Bedale and was lord of Cotherstone. He fought during the French wars of Edward III and was one of the foundation knights of the garter. His first wife and son predeceased him. His second wife, Joan, was the heiress to estates at Ingham county Norfolk and together they rebuilt the church at Ingham (where fine family brasses were preserved for several centuries) and founded a college of trinitarian canons who prayed for the release of crusader captives of the Turks. Miles de Stapleton died in 1364, leaving his eldest son by Joan, another Miles de Stapleton, to inherit while still under age. He died in 1419 to be succeeded by his son Brian de Stapleton (d. 1438) and his grandson, Miles de Stapleton (d. 1466). The latter left two daughters who became coheiresses to the estates in Norfolk, but by the tail male Bedale reverted to the descendants of Gilbert de Stapleton's younger son, Brian de Stapleton (b. circa 1326), to whom we now return (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.10).

Brian de Stapleton has left behind a considerable legend largely based on his military career. He was a young baby when his father died and was brought up by his mother and Sir Thomas Sheffield. His career began with Edward III's first wars against France and he was at the siege of Tournay in 1340 and the siege of Calais in 1347. In 1369 he was one of the knights sent with the king's son, the earl of Cambridge, to help the Black Prince in Aquitaine. His service resulted in gaining two manors and in 1374 his fortunes were further increased when he inherited Carlton on the death of Thomas Stapleton, the son of his cousin. A year later he purchased Wighill. In 1380 he became warden of Calais and in 1382 became knight of the garter. He was one of the deponents in the Scrope-Grosvenor controversy of 1386 and as late as 1390 was still involved in tournaments. The saracen's head over the family crest is reputed to have been gained by Brian de Stapleton after slaying a Moor in single combat. He is also reputed to have brought from France the right hand of Mary Magdalene which he gave to the house of friars in York. He died in 1394 (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Chetwynd-Stapylton, 'The Stapletons of Yorkshire', pp. 236 ff; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.10).

Brian de Stapleton had two sons, the eldest of whom predeceased him. His Wighill estates passed to his younger son, Miles Stapleton (d. 1399), and his descendants. One of them, Robert Stapleton (d. 1557), sat as a justice in the trial of Catherine Howard in 1541. His son, also Robert (1548?-1606), was high sheriff of Yorkshire and was responsible for building a new house at Wighill in about 1580. The descendants of his first wife inherited Wighill and one of his grandsons was Philip Stapleton (1603-1647), the parliamentary leader sent to York to resist the attempts of Charles I to gain Hull. He was involved in various military campaigns before dying, possibly of plague, in Calais and being buried in the protestant cemetery there. In the eighteenth century the Wighill branch of the family expired in the male line and the Chetwynds took their name by marriage before selling the estates in 1818. The descendants of Robert Stapleton and his second wife established themselves at Myton and were royalists, Robert's son, Brian (d. 1658), becoming Receiver General of the North for Charles I and his son being made baronet by Charles II. The baronetcy expired with Martin Stapleton who died without issue in 1817. His nephew Martin Bree (1771-1842) succeeded to the Myton estates and assumed the name of Stapleton (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Chetwynd-Stapylton, 'The Stapletons of Yorkshire', pp. 66, 380 ff).

Although Brian de Stapleton's son had predeceased him the Carlton line of the family was continued with his grandson, Brian Stapleton (b. circa 1385). He married Agnes, daughter of John Goddard, high sheriff of Yorkshire, and died young in 1418 leaving behind a son of five, Brian Stapleton (b. circa 1413), who inherited his estates in Carlton and Kentmere. He married Isabel, daughter and heiress of Thomas Rempston of Nottinghamshire and he died in 1467. Nine years later his son, Brian Stapleton (b. circa 1454), married Joan Lovell, the niece and coheiress of Viscount and Baron Beaumont. The Beaumonts were descended from the Frankish princes of Brienne from whom had come John I (b. 1148) the last Christian king of Jerusalem. Through this marriage the Stapletons became heirs to the barony of Beaumont which had been created in 1435 for John de Beaumont, Great Chamberlain and Constable of England, Joan Lovell's grandfather who had been slain in 1460 fighting for the Lancastrians. A barony in fee could be passed through the female line, but the title was not reclaimed for over 300 years (Foster, Pedigrees; Robinson, Carlton Towers, pp.10-11).

Brian Stapleton and Joan Lovell had two sons, the youngest of whom inherited the Rempston estates of his grandmother. The eldest, Brian Stapleton (d. 1550), married first Elizabeth Scrope and had two sons and second Joanna Bassett by whom he had several more children including Anthony Stapleton who became Treasurer of the Inner Temple. Brian Stapleton's eldest son predeceased him and he was succeeded by Richard Stapleton (b. circa 1516), whose first wife Thomasin was the daughter of Robert Amadei, goldsmith and master of King Henry VIII's jewel house. When Richard Stapleton died in 1585 the Carlton estates devolved on their son, Brian Stapleton (d. 1606) who became high sheriff of Yorkshire (Foster, Pedigrees).

The Stapletons managed to retain their influence despite continuing to adhere to Catholicism and the chantry chapel in the Carlton church survived the suppression in 1547. In 1611 its existence was discovered and the church fully converted to Church of England worship, after which the Stapletons only used the village church for burials, maintaining their private chapel at home. The family suffered the full weight of recusancy fines (the acounts for which are in DDCA), but despite this, after Brian Stapleton died, his widow, Elizabeth (nee Darcy) completely rebuilt the house, in 1614, and this is now the core of Carlton Towers. Her eldest surviving son, Richard Stapleton, died in the same year, but not before his marriage to Elizabeth Pierpont had produced seven children, including Robert Stapleton (d. 1669) the poet and translator of Juvenal, who served Charles I before and during the civil war and became one of the ushers of the privy chamber of Charles II. Their eldest son, Gilbert Stapleton (d. 1636), was forced to sell Kentmere to support recusancy fines. By his second wife, Helen Gascoigne, he had six children, including four sons, yet despite this the Stapletons of Carlton died out in the male line with this generation (Foster, Pedigrees; Chetwynd-Stapylton, 'The Stapletons of Yorkshire', pp. 248 ff; Robinson, Carlton Towers, pp. 10-11).

Gilbert and Helen Stapleton's eldest two sons died without issue, the second giving up his birthright and becoming a monk. Their fourth son died without issue and a daughter became a nun. Their third son, Miles Stapleton (b. 1626), was created baronet in 1662. He bought Drax and Berwick Hill and married twice, though all of his three children died prematurely. Miles Stapleton has left a reasonable number of papers including the earliest letters in the family archive. He was a recusant who was tried for complicity in the Popish Plot and acquitted by a jury of Yorkshire gentry who also acquitted a member of the Tempest family. A kinsman, father Thomas Thwing, was hanged, drawn and quartered making him the last Catholic priest to be martyred in England, in 1680. Gilbert and Helen Stapleton's other child, a daughter called Anne (b. 1628), married Mark Errington of Ponteland, Northumberland, and their son, Nicholas Errington (b. circa 1660), inherited from his uncle Miles when the latter died in 1707 (Foster, Pedigrees; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p.11; Aveling, Northern Catholics, p. 365).

A large number of the Errington family muniments are embedded within the Stapleton family archive. Nicholas Errington took the name Stapleton and died in 1716. His eldest surviving son by his first wife Mary Scroope, was Nicholas Stapleton alias Errington who died in 1750. The children of his first wife, Charlotte Eure, died young or without issue. The children of his second wife, Mary Sandys, were all female. By his third wife, Winifred White, he had seven sons and three daughters. His youngest son, Gregory Stapleton (1748-1802), attended the English college at Douai in the 1760s, was president of the English college at St Omer from 1787 and was bishop of Hierocaesaria in partibus and vicar-apostolic for the Midland district of England when he died in 1802. Nicholas Stapleton/Errington's eldest son died without succession. His second son, Thomas Stapleton, of Carlton and Bedale, sold Ponteland and made an unsuccessful claim on the Beamont barony in 1794. He also improved the Carlton estate, landscaping the park and adding an east wing and stables. He died in 1821 and his only son died unmarried in 1836; the latter's will was administered by Lady Throckmorton and when she died in 1839 the Carlton inheritance transferred to the descendants of Nicholas Stapleton/Errington's third son, Miles Stapleton (b. circa 1742-1808) (Foster, Pedigrees; Dictionary of National Biography; Robinson, Carlton Towers, p. 11).

Miles Stapleton's son, Thomas Stapleton (b. 1778), died in the same year as Lady Throckmorton, so the grandson, Miles Thomas Stapleton (b. 1805), came into the Carlton inheritance (estate correspondence is extensive for this generation). He followed the example of his great uncle and laid claim to the Beaumont barony and this was granted. Papers related to this are in the archive. The title was retrospectively conferred on his ancestors and he was called to the house of lords as 8th Baron Beaumont on 16 October 1840. Miles Thomas Stapleton died in 1854 when his son, Henry Stapleton (b. 1848) was only six years old (Robinson, Carlton Towers, p. 12; Foster, Pedigrees).

Henry Stapleton, 9th baron Beaumont, went to Oxford at a time when the Catholic revival was taking place. This may have inspired manic building and rebuilding of the house, the finance for which came from selling large parts of the estate. Carlton Towers was gothicised with the help of Edward Welby Pugin and plans are extant. He had a military career during the Zulu Wars and commanded the 20th Hussars. He married Violet Wooton Isaacson, but there were no children and he died from pneumonia in 1892. The correspondence of both Henry and Violet Stapleton is in the archive. Carlton transferred, on his death, to his brother Miles Stapleton, who married Mary Ethel Tempest, daughter and sole heiress of Charles Henry Tempest, only a year later. In 1895 he was killed in a shooting accident, leaving his daughter, Mona Josephine Tempest, as the sole heir to the Carlton estates of the Stapleton family and the Bolton estates of the Tempest family. As the barony could pass through the female line, Mona Josephine Tempest Stapleton became Baroness Beaumont in her own right and in 1914 she married Bernard Edward, 3rd Baron Howard of Glossop, and great grandson of the 13th Duke of Norfolk. Their eldest son, Miles Francis Stapleton Fitzalan Howard is 12th Baron Beaumont and 4th Lord Howard of Glossop and in 1975 he succeeded his cousin as 17th Duke of Norfolk. He is the current owner of the papers of the Stapleton, Errington and Tempest families (Robinson, Carlton Towers, p. 12).

Access Information

Access will be granted to any accredited reader

Other Finding Aids

Entry in Landed family and estate archives subject guide

Custodial History

Deposited in 1977 [U DDCA], 1978 [U DDCA2], 1981 & 1985 [U DDCA3] and 1981 [U DDCA4].

Related Material

Papers of Henry Stapleton, Baron Beaumont, and Violet, Baroness Beaumont [U DP171]

Other repositories:

Estate papers [U DDCL], East Riding of Yorkshire Archives Service

Marrick Priory papers, Brotherton Library, University of Leeds

COLL MISC 0644, Archives and Special Collections, London School of Economics

Letters of Miles Stapleton (1628-1707), Durham University Library and Bodleian (and Thomas Stapleton 1805-1849)

Letters and papers of William Stapleton (1698-1740), John Rylands Library, Manchester and Houghton Library, Harvard


  • Aveling, Hugh, Northern Catholics: the Catholic recusants of the North Riding of Yorkshire, 1558-1790 (London, 1966)
  • Chetwynd-Stapleton, H E, 'The Stapletons of Yorkshire', The Yorkshire Archaeological and Topographical Journal, 8 (1884)
  • Cox, Charles, 'The household books of Sir Miles Stapleton, Bart. 1656-1705', pt.I and II, The Ancestor (1902)
  • Dictionary of National Biography
  • Foster, Joseph, Pedigrees of the county families of Yorkshire, 4 vols (1874-5)
  • Robinson, John Martin, Carlton Towers: the Yorkshire home of the Duke of Norfolk (1964)