Tuesday 7 August 2012

Sir Thomas Tyldesley 1612-1651

In 1844 George Ormerod published "Tracts relating to Military Proceedings in Lancashire during the Great Civil War"(FN1). On page 306 he included a notice of Sir Thomas Tyldesley as a lengthy footnote:
Tyldesley, who (as appears by a subsequent document) was to have acted as the Earl's second in command, if the King's expedition had succeeded, and who occupies so distinguished a place in the preceding pages, was noticed in p. 275, as conducting the retreat of Duke Hamilton's Lancashire auxiliaries to the time of their surrender at Appleby. Clarendon mentions his subsequent services in Ireland under Ormond, and his passing to Scotland shortly before Charles's movement into England ; and from a document mentioned hereafter, it appears that he was communicating with Derby's friends on the King's behalf in Lancashire, when a discovery took place, and he fled to Man. In this island he last occurred (previous to his final reappearance in Lancashire) as directing the preparations for Derby's expedition to England. See p. 285. 

There is an unintelligible and very inaccurate passage in Lloyd's Memoires, p. 692, respecting Tyldesley being buried in one grave with Sir Francis Gamul, who certainly survived to 1654, although included by error among the slain in the first account of Wigan fight. The same statement is inaccurate also as to Tyldesley. After his heroic death in the battle-field, and his escape thereby from the scaffold, this last named officer was interred in the north chancel of the church of Leigh, appendant to his ancient mansion of Morleys, where the Earl of Derby, seven weeks afterwards, in his way to execution at Bolton, made an unavailing request to visit his grave. 
Tyldesley is honourably commemorated by Clarendon, and the long series of his exploits, enumerated in the Index, proves that he deserved such remembrance. Another memorial (of a more solid, but less durable description, than Clarendon's praise) is the Pillar in Wigan Lane, erected by his " grateful cornet, Alexander Rigby," 
Considering the adverse zeal of Tyldesley, the ruling powers may be said to have dealt gently with him. He was thrice prisoner, but always at liberty and in arms again; and no forfeiture is known to have followed his decease, at least so far as related to his estates in Astley and Tyldesley, the latter of which passed by sale to the Editor's family (after intermediate alienations) in the early part of the last century. A fine portrait of General Tyldesley is given in Baines's Lancashire, from an original painting at Hulton Hall.
Edward Tyldesley, son of the Royalist, had for his reward a place in the list of the intended Knights of the Royal Oak. In 1715, Edward Tyldesley, of the Lodge, was in arms at Preston, and (according to the report of the trial in the Historical Register) escaped solely by the favour of the jury. Several documents remain among the depositions in the Tower in 1716, relative to this Edward, and to his aunt the Lady Abbess Tyldesley, presiding over a " rich Augustine nunnery at Paris," and the patroness of him and his political friends. The last notice of any known male descendant of Sir Thomas that has occurred, is a local tradition of James Tyldesley riding into Leigh, at the head of some of Prince Charles's adherents in the irruption of 1745.

1. Tracts relating to Military Proceedings in Lancashire during the Great Civil War, George Ormerod, Chetham Society 1844 Vol 2