Bessingby, Yorkshire

As a result of William Dugdale's visitation of the county of York, conducted between 1665-66, Richard Staveley (1631-1672) of 'Besonby cum Eston' was disclaimed at the Lent Assizes in 1668 for "usurping Arms and Titles" to which he was not entitled.

...Know ye therefore that I, the said Norry, in pursuance and accomplishment of his said Majesties desire, and furtherance of his service herein, having in my last visit within this County of York, by due summons, required the persons whose names are hereunto annext, to shew unto me by what right they do use and bear any such Arms, Cognizances, and Crests as above . . . . . and take upon them those titles and dignities of Esquire or Gentleman, and having received no sufficient proof of such their right thereunto, and my own justifycation for allowance thereof according to the trust reposed in me by his said Majesty in that behalf, but that they have presumptuously usurped the same without any good ground or authority, contrary to all right, and to the ancient and laudable custome of this Realm and usage of the Law of Arms, do hereby declare that from henceforth they are not to use those Arms and Titles, upon such further pain and peril as by the Earl Marshal of England, or his Majesties most Honerable Commissioners for the executing of that office, may be inflicted upon them...

William Dugdale

Norroy King of Arms

Wapentake: Dickering       Residence: Besonby cum Eston       Name: Richd Staveley


Richard was of course by no means the first, nor the last to be charged with such an offense.  During this period Richard was Bridlington Key Warden, and as such perhaps felt his position worthy of proclaiming himself a Gentleman. Dugdale however, clearly did not agree.  

Michael Staveley b. 1666 of Bessingby was the son of Richard Staveley.  Michael is known to have been married at least twice.  With his first wife he had the following children:

Richard Staveley b. Bessingby, Yorkshire
Thomas Staveley b. Bessingby, Yorkshire
Elizabeth Staveley b. Bessingby, Yorkshire
Lucy Staveley b. Bessingby, Yorkshire


Elizabeth married James WALLIS of Etton.

Lucy married Robert KIRBY of Heselwood.

Michael and his second wife Elizabeth GOULTON had the following children:

Sarah Staveley b.   Bessingby, Yorkshire
Walter Staveley b. 1701 d. Feb 23, 1780 Bessingby, Yorkshire
Francis Staveley b. 1707   Bessingby, Yorkshire
Michael Staveley b. 1712 d. 1779 Bessingby, Yorkshire


Daughter Sarah married William BOWER of Bridlington Key.

Son Michael married Sarah LOFTUS in Walkington in 1735, and settled in Beverley.

In Michael's will of 1725 he references his eldest son Richard, and Richard's four sons, Michael, William, Richard, and John. 

Probate copy will of Michael Staveley of Besingby gentleman

January 18, 1725

Executors: William Ward, York, doctor of law, Francis Goulton, Highthorne, gentleman Bequests: executors in trust; eldest son Richard and his four sons Michael, William, Richard and John; daughters Elizabeth Wallis, Luce Kirby and Sarah Bower; sons Thomas, Walter, Francis and Michael; brother Thomas Goulton Property: lordship of Bessingby with messuages, lands etc in the parish of Bessingby

Codicil February 10, 1725

Probate January 8, 1726


Lease and release relating to land in Bessingby

Date: May 11, 1726

William Ward, York, doctor of laws, Francis Goulton, Bessingby, gentleman (executors and devisees of Michael Staveley, Bessingby, gentleman deceased) 2) James Wallis, Etton, gentleman, wife Elizabeth, Robert Kirby, Heslewood, gentleman, wife Lucy, Thomas Staveley, Bessingby, gentleman, William Bower, Bridlington Key, gentleman, wife Sarah, Walter Staveley, Bessingby, gentleman, Francis Staveley, Bessingby, Michael Staveley, Bessingby, (Elizabeth Wallis, Lucy Kirby and Thomas Staveley are children of Michael Staveley deceased by his first wife, and Sarah Bower, Walter Staveley, Francis Staveley and Michael Staveley are children of Michael Staveley deceased by his second wife Elizabeth, sister of Francis Goulton) 3) Thomas Goulton, Bessingby, gentleman Property: manor or lordship of Bessingby with rights and appurtenances, capital messuage at Bessingby, advowson of church or chapel of Bessingby, 17 oxgangs demesne land between two baulks in the open fields with two closes parcel thereof called Weston Towne Close and Rough Holme Close, and all rights belonging to the demesne in Carr Close; four closes called the Cow Close, the Ing Close, the Football Close and the New Close, two cottages called Haggits and Darley's cottage, the Great and Little Baulks, and a parcel of land called Consetts Head Land, all in Bessingby (315 acres), late of Michael Staveley deceased, and moiety of tithes in said manors, lands et ceteras Consideration: £l288 16s 8d principal and interest owed to Thomas Goulton; £150 to James Wallis and Elizabeth Wallis, £170 to Robert Kirby and Lucy Kirby, £250 to Thomas Staveley, £120 to [?], and £50 to Walter Staveley under will of Michael Staveley; £200 to Walter Staveley and £50 to William Bower and Sarah Bower chargeable under marriage settlement of Michael Staveley and Elizabeth; £200 and £50 to Francis Staveley under will and marriage settlement; £250 and £50 to Michael Staveley under the same; £50 apiece to four children of Richard Staveley under codicil; £36 3s 4d as remainder of purchase money to William Ward and Francis Goulton.




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