Pontefract Castle – 13th Century

2/1/1216On 2nd January 1216, King John was at Pontefract on his northern ‘crusade’ to revenge himself against the northern barons (of Magna Carta) and Alexander II, King of Scotland, who had sided with the rebels. The king forced John de Lacy and another member of the 25 (Magna Carta) rebel barons, Roger de Montbegon to submit. John de Lacy stated: 'If I have sworn an oath to the King's enemies, then I will not hold to it, nor will I adhere in any way to the charter of liberties which the lord king has granted in common to the barons of England and which the lord pope has annulled'. This threat came soon after the king had persuaded William d’Aubigny’s (another rebel baron) garrison at Belvoir to surrender on pain of starvation and two days before York’s terrified citizens had offered the king £1000 (£1.95 million in today's money) to avoid its ransacking.
4/1/1296On 4th January 1296, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, sailed from Plymouth, as commander of an English relief force for Gascony under Edmund, Earl of Lancaster. Henry was appointed Lieutenant in Aquitaine (king’s representative) under contract for 2000 marks (£1.8 million in today's money) per year. The sizeable English force included twenty-five barons, one thousand horses and ten thousand infantrymen. After the Earl of Lancaster’s death from illness on the 5th June 1296, de Lacy took sole charge of the relief forces. After mixed fortunes (and particularly the defeat and heavy casualties sustained at Bellegarde), de Lacy spent Christmas 1296 in Bayonne, returning to England around Easter 1297. He was later, in March 1299, given relief from all his debts to the Crown on account of his service in Gascony.
14/1/1236On 14th January 1236, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract and Constable of Chester, was present at the marriage of Henry III and Eleanor of Provence, acting, in many ways, as an officer holding back the crowds.
20/1/1236On 20th January 1236, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was in attendance at the coronation of Henry III’s Queen (Eleanor of Provence). It was at the coronation feast and court celebrations afterwards that John befriended and ‘sponsored’ Simon de Montfort.
25/1/1205On 25th January 1205, Roger de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was a witness of letters patent and close authorising King John’s officials to retain and destroy false coins. There was widespread concern during this part of the king’s reign regarding the quality of coinage in circulation and the debasing of the currency particularly given King John’s persistent demands for funds regarding his foreign campaigns, castle repairs, garrisons’ reinforcements etc.
25/1/1277On 25th January 1277, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was with Edward I at Worcester preparing for a military campaign in Wales against the 'rebel' leader, Llywelyn ap Gruffudd. By the end of this month, at Oswestry, Henry arrived with a notable company of seven barons, twenty-five knights, sixty-eight troopers and one hundred plus lances. By 1st July, prior to the main, impending campaign, Sir Henry had helped King Edward receive the homage of five Welsh rulers and in early September was with the king helping to capture Anglesey.
25/1/1278On 25th January 1278, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was authorised by Edward I to travel to Brabant to arrange the future marriage of his daughter, Margaret, to John, heir to the Duke of Brabant.
25/1/1287Henry de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln and lord of Pontefract, was with Edmund of Lancaster visiting Gascony when he made his will on or around 25th January 1287 in Bordeaux, although it was later cancelled. In it he left £100 (£97,000 today) each to the poor scholars of Oxford and Cambridge and made reference to £1,000 (£970,000 today) he had deposited at Lincoln Cathedral in case his then five-years-old daughter, Alice, did not marry.
28/1/1237On 28th January 1237, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, was with Henry III at Westminster, for the first confirmation of the 1225 issue of Magna Carta. Henry, as often throughout his reign, was in desperate need of funds and sought permission from his magnates and prelates for a ‘thirtieth’ (tax on the value of people’s moveable goods).
30/1/1297On 30th January 1297, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, and his army had been ambushed by the French en route from Bayonne to Bonnegarde trying to bring provisions to the besieged bastide, in Edward I’s attempts to reclaim Gascony. Many infantry were killed and several knights taken prisoner, including John of St John, Lieutenant of Aquitaine.
1/2/1221In early February 1221, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, on the orders of Henry III, assisted in the siege of Skipton Castle, following the rebellion of William de Forz, Earl of Aumale. De Forz surrendered to the king through the mediation of the Archbishop of York, Walter de Gray.
5/2/1292On 5th February 1292, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was made Joint Commissioner for the Armament of the Kingdom by Edward I.
7/2/1249On 7th February 1249, the Henry III Fine Rolls recorded: ’The prior of Pontefract gives the king 100s (nearly £9000 in today’s money) for having a charter to have a market and fair.’
11/2/1225On 11th February 1225, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, was a witness to the definitive reissue of Magna Carta by Henry III.
13/2/1255On 13th February 1255, Sir Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was awarded additional estates in Penwortham and Kirkby, Lancashire, roughly between existing de Lacy lands of Halton and Clitheroe.
6/3/1204On 6th March 1204, Chateau Gaillard, controlling shipping along the River Seine and commanded by Roger de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was overrun by Philip II’s French forces after a six months’ siege. Hundreds of local citizens (from a group of two thousand) initially admitted to the castle, but later forced out by Roger because of food shortages within, died due to starvation during the winter months. Roger de Lacy was captured and ransomed for £1000 (£2.1 million in today's money).
1/4/1291In April 1291, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was issued with a writ, along with other court nobles and their forces, to meet at Norham where a Scottish delegation was to discuss Scotland’s succession in light of the death, the year before, of Margaret of Norway (the only surviving descendant of King Alexander III of Scotland).
3/4/1253On 3rd April 1253, Edmund de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln, and Lord of the Honour of Pontefract, determined to establish a house of Friars Preachers on his own estates after the death of Richard Wych, Bishop of Chichester. Edmund donated land (about 6 acres), probably in 1256, for the building of a Dominican church of Pontefract and left his heart to be buried there (dying in 1258).
5/4/1272On 5th April 1272, Henry de Lacy, future lord of Pontefract, was granted custody of Knaresborough Castle, formerly held by Henry III’s brother, Richard, Earl of Cornwall.  
11/4/1239On 11th April 1239, John de Lacy, Lord of Pontefract, was at Westminster to witness Amaury de Montfort, the elder brother of Simon de Montfort, in the presence of Henry III and the papal legate, proclaim the rights to the Earldom of Leicester lay with Simon.
15/4/1296In April 1296, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, founded Whalley Abbey, Lancashire to which his great-grandfather’s foundation of Stanlaw, Cheshire was transferred.
20/4/1251On 20th April 1251, Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, acted as valettus (page, groom) to Henry III, which lasted until 28th June of that year. By this time, Edmund was in his early twenties but, having inherited his father John’s estates as a minor, was raised in the household of Henry III.
27/4/1279On 27th April 1279, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was appointed as Joint-Lieutenant (locum tenentibus) of England i.e. king’s regent/deputy during King Edward I’s absence in France. This status was in alliance with the Bishops of Hereford and Worcester and the king’s cousin, Edmund, 2nd Earl of Cornwall. Edward departed for France on 11th May in order to take possession of Queen Eleanor’s recently inherited county of Ponthieu and to conclude a treaty with Philip III regarding Edward’s jurisdiction in Gascony.
30/4/1230On 30th April 1230, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, sailed out of Portsmouth with Henry III to secure most of Brittany and Poitou, areas held before 1224. De lacy received the manors of Collingham and Bardesy as reward for this service.
1/5/1207On 1st May 1207, King John stayed at Pontefract Castle on his not infrequent ‘processions’ throughout his realm. The 3rd of the month saw him at Derby, 4th at Hunston, 5th Lichfield, 8th Gloucester, 10th Bristol etc. culminating via nine other venues at Lewes on the 31st. These regular nation-wide itineraries were a feature of John’s reign: some surmising that they were for personal protection i.e. never sleeping in the same place for long, as much as surveying his kingdom.
1/5/1218In May 1218, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, accompanied Ranulf de Blondeville, 6th Earl of Chester and 1st Earl of Lincoln, on the Fifth Crusade to Damietta in Egypt, returning in 1220.
1/5/1230In May 1230, Edmund de Lacy, later lord of Pontefract, was born. He succeeded his father, John de Lacy, on his death in 1240 but, being a minor, was raised in the royal household of Henry III as a ward of the crown albeit his sisters initially remained with their/his mother, Margaret, until 1243. Edmund was in the custody of Richard le Norman and John de Barsham, effectively his tutors.
1/5/1247On 1st May 1247, Edmund de Lacy, later lord of Pontefract, married Alasia di Saluzzo in Woodstock, Oxfordshire. Alasia (Alice) was the granddaughter of Amadeus, Count of Savoy, the uncle of Queen Eleanor of Provence. The marriage was highly politically motivated: forming part of the Anglo-Savoyard treaty of 1246 which bolstered Henry III’s foreign interests against Louis IX’s encroachments; it strengthened Queen Eleanor’s Savoyard faction at court; and attempted to pre-empt any potentially unfavourable alliances should Edmund’s mother re-marry.
1/5/1248In May 1248, Edmund de Lacy, later lord of Pontefract, and still legally underage, was permitted to inherit all of his estates for a relief of £858 (£626,000 in today's money).
1/5/1278On 1st May 1278, Dominus Petrus de Cestreia (Peter of Chester or Peter of Lascy, illegitimate son of John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, Constable of Chester and Earl of Lincoln) was the first witness to his nephew Henry de Lacy’s charter to the burgesses of Pontefract, being described as Provost of Beverley.
1/5/1293In May 1293, King Edward I asked his brother, Edmund, Earl of Lancaster (father of Thomas, future Earl) and Henry de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln and lord of Pontefract, to go to France to try to resolve diplomatic problems with the King of France, Philip IV. Quarrels between English and French sailors from Normandy had resulted in the former attacking La Rochelle and Philip’s letters to Edward were discourteous, failing to address him as King of England nor acknowledging him as Duke of Aquitaine.
3/5/1230On the 3rd May 1230, John de Lacy, Lord of Pontefract, landed at St Malo in Brittany in support of Henry III. Henry was leading a mighty force across the Channel to reclaim his inheritance lost by his father King John i.e. his lands in Normandy, Brittany and Poitou.
5/5/1242On 5th May 1242, the Henry III Fine Rolls recorded: ‘To the barons of the Exchequer. The king has committed to the venerable father in Christ Walter (de Gray) archbishop of York, primate of England, all lands, castles and vaccaries (a place for keeping cattle) with all their appurtenances formerly of John de Lacy, formerly earl of Lincoln (and lord of Pontefract) which are in the king’s hands outside the county of Chester, excepting the castle and manor of Donington and the manors of Snaith and Wadenhoe, to hold at farm for the five years next following the Invention of the Holy Cross in the twenty-sixth year, rendering for each manor per annum at the Exchequer the extent at which they have been extended by Nicholas de Molis, Sheriff of Yorkshire, by the king’s order, one moiety (one part) thereof at Michaelmas and the other moiety at Easter, namely £122 19s 10d (“over £218,000 in today’s money) for the manor of Pontefract…….’
7/5/1285From 7th May 1285 until 28th June, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was at Edward I’s court witnessing forty-one royal charters (from 5th May – 20th June 1289 he witnessed fifty-four). As on numerous past occasions when Henry had undertaken this function, this was an indication of his favoured standing in royal circles.
13/5/1286On 13th May 1286, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, accompanied Edward I on his journey to France to pay homage to the new French king, Philip IV, for the dukedom of Gascony and to attempt to broker a peace between Aragon and France (agreed in July 1286). Other notable royal members of this entourage included Edmund, Earl of Lancaster, the king’s brother and the Earl of Gloucester. Henry spent three years abroad, returning in 1289.
23/5/1261JoustOn 23rd May 1261, knights met at Pontefract and tourneyed against a prohibition order by Henry III, who was fearful of potential anti-royal activities. The Sheriff arrested the knights and confiscated their lands but the King remitted the punishment a few days later. The knights included Peter de Ros, William de Percy, Robert Fitz-Brian, Robert Pikot, and Hugh de Neville.
24/5/1213On 24th May 1213, Peter of Pontefract (or Wakefield) who had foretold that King John would no longer be king by Ascension Day that year was removed from Corfe Castle and dragged by horses to Wareham where he was hanged with his son.
27/5/1205On 27th May 1205, Roger de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was awarded the manor of Snaith and allied soke (a minor administrative district) by King John for the service of one knight’s fee. Snaith was worth approximately £30 pa to Roger (about £63, 000 in today's money).
29/5/1258On 29th May 1258, only days before his death and suggestive of a chronic life-threatening illness or injury, Sir Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was assured by Henry III (and confirmed by letters patent sought by the queen) that the testament he had made would be honoured, with his executors having free administration, and any debts would be sought from Edmund’s heirs. Edmund died on the 2nd June and was buried at Stanlow Abbey, Cheshire. His wife, Alice, had been told by Henry III, the day before her husband’s death, that the wardship of Edmund’s lands would be sold to her first if agreed at the king’s imminent council at Oxford. Alice was eventually confirmed as possessor of two parts of Edmund’s lands in February 1259 for an annual payment of £362 3s 8d ( £457,000 in today's money) with the remaining lands held by the Crown during her son’s, Henry de Lacy, minority; he was seven years old at the time of his father’s death.
1/6/1290In June 1290, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was charged with negotiating with the Guardians of Scotland concerning the Scottish succession and prospective marriage of Margaret of Norway (the only surviving descendant of King Alexander III of Scotland) and Edward of Caenarvon, King Edward I’s young son; the ensuing Treaty of Birgham on 18th July proved unworkable when Margaret died en route to Scotland in late September that year.
2/6/1258On 2nd June 1258, Edmund de Lacy, son and heir of John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, Earl of Lincoln, Baron of Halton, Constable of Chester, died and was buried at Stanlow Abbey in the Wirral peninsula. One record states that his heart was brought to Pontefract and buried in St Richard’s Church which he had founded.
5/6/1296On 5th June 1296, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, took command of the English forces in Gascony after the death of Edmund of Lancaster at Bayonne. This was the second (and much delayed) English army sent to the duchy in an attempt to regain it in Edward I’s war with France.
5/6/1296On 5th June 1296, Thomas of Lancaster, husband of Alice de Lacy and later lord of Pontefract, succeeded his father, Edmund (Crouchback), as Earl of Lancaster.
6/6/1294Henry de Lacy SealOn 6th June 1294, Edward I granted Henry de Lacy, Earl of Lincoln and Baron of Pontefract, a Wednesday market to be held at the manor of Pontefract. In addition, markets and fairs were granted at his manors of Bradford, Campsall, Slaidbum, and Almondbury in Yorkshire, Burnley in Lancashire and places in other counties with free warren (franchise or privilege to allow the killing of game) in all his demesne lands (piece of land attached to a manor for the owner's own use) of Knottingley, Owston, Campsall etc in the counties of Yorkshire, Lancashire, Middlesex, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.
8/6/1294On 8th June 1294, Edward I summoned certain barons to him at Portsmouth in order to make an assault to recover the Duchy of Gascony, lost to the French in February of that year. Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was to captain the second, larger fleet alongside Edmund of Lancaster. The first force would be led by the king’s nephew, John of Brittany, assisted by John of St John, ousted seneschal of the duchy. Atrocious weather delayed the departure of the first fleet until mid-August and ultimately the main force was postponed indefinitely.
15/6/1215Magna_CartaOn 15th June 1215 Magna Carta Libertatum was sealed at Runnymede in front of 25 barons. The youngest of the barons was probably John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, one of the guarantors or sureties of the Great Charter.
23/6/1253On 23rd June 1253, Sir Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was given the custody of the hundred (a division of an English shire consisting of 100 hides: a hide being about 30 modern acres) of Staincliffe, in the West Riding of Yorkshire, for £26 3s and 6d a year (£37,417 in today's money) and was assured in July that if the land was leased for farming, first refusal would lie with Edmund.
29/6/1237On 29th June 1237, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, was appointed by Henry III as one of several lords overseeing the arrival and mission of Cardinal Otto of Tonengo, Pope Gregory IX’s legate. Otto had been requested by the king in order to provide guidance and help in overcoming his precarious financial situation and faltering peace treaty with Scotland. His barons were resentful and mistrusting of foreign interference in matters of state with Matthew Paris recording: “Our king perverts all things. In every way he sets at nought our laws and disregards his plighted faith and promises……… now he has secretly called a legate into the country, who will change the whole face of the land: now he gives and now at will he takes back what he has given.” Otto was to remain in England until the 7th January 1241.
3/7/1282On 3rd July 1282, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, agreed with Roger de Mowbray, 1st Baron Mowbray, to exchange lands resulting in a consolidation of areas to the northern and south-eastern parts of Henry’s Pontefract estates.
8/7/1281On 8th July 1281, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, provided testimony to the Crown about the surrender of Welsh 'rebel', Ifor ap Gruffud.
9/7/1297On 9th July 1297, Edward I ordered the tenants of Thomas of Lancaster’s (Earl of Lancaster and future lord of Pontefract) late father, Edmund, to do homage to Thomas, albeit he was underage, probably nineteen.
10/7/1237On 10th July 1237, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was made Constable of Chester and Beeston Castles.
12/7/1288On 12th July 1288, Alice de Lacy, daughter of Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was granted letters patent of the castle, town, manor and Honour of Halton in the county of Chester, for and during her life with reversion after her death to the king and his heirs.
22/7/1240On 22nd July 1240, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract Castle, died. He was one of the 25 barons who forced the royal sealing and overseeing of the enactment of Magna Carta in 1215.
22/7/1298On 22 July 1298, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, in the First War of Scottish Independence, led the first line of English cavalry at the Battle of Falkirk against the Scots under William Wallace. Scottish casualties were heavy and although Wallace evaded capture, he soon resigned as Guardian of Scotland. Reputedly, Edward I’s huge army for this campaign was in the order of 26,000 men and 3,000 cavalry.
23/7/1215On 23rd July 1215 King John wrote a strongly-worded letter, from a council at Oxford, to the men of Yorkshire, covering all ranks (and by implication John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract), to hand back possessions they had seized from the king, by the 15th August; the same date that London was to be returned to the king.  On the 16th July, at Oxford King John had demanded the restoration of his treasure from London plus the formal restoration of peace.  The  barons had sought to extend their power over institutions such as the Exchequer in addition to presenting further claims for restoration of lands from the king and intervening in the appointment of local officials to secure favourable terms.  Unsurprisingly the council ended abruptly with the Barons leaving "with great rancour".
26/7/1214On 26th July 1214, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was made Keeper of Castle Donington, Leicestershire. This was returned to him by King John in lieu of his surrender of hostages, including his younger brother.
1/8/1242In August 1242, Edmund de Lacy, later lord of Pontefract, and John de Warenne, heir to the earldom of Surrey and Sandal Castle, both in royal custody due to the ‘premature’ deaths of their fathers, were granted a gift of two deer by Henry III. This was indicative of their esteem within the royal household.
7/8/1241On 7th August 1241, an order was made to the Constable of Pontefract to ‘cause the foals in the stud formerly of John de Lacy, formerly earl of Lincoln, which ought to be sold in this season, to be removed and sold by the view and testimony of law-worthy men, and to cause the monies arising therefrom to be kept safely until the king orders him otherwise. He is also to cause the old oxen to be taken away from the king’s plough-teams by the view of the same, causing them to be fattened in the king’s larder, and he is to place younger oxen in their stead from the vaccaries (a place for keeping cattle) formerly of the aforesaid earl.’
7/8/1244On 7th August 1244, whilst the Honour of Pontefract was in the control of the king during Edmund de Lacy’s minority, Henry III gave his brother Richard, Earl of Cornwall, 50 head of deer from Pontefract Park to stock his park at Knaresborough.
9/8/1217On 9th August 1217, after John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, had sworn fealty to Henry III and had been pardoned by his minority government for his support of the barons’ rebellion (refer their defeat at Lincoln in May 1217), his lands were returned to him.
12/8/1295On 12th August 1295, the Calendar of the Charter Rolls records: ‘Inspeximus and confirmation of the following charters: —A charter, of Henry de Lacy, earl of Lincoln, constable of Chester, lord of Ros and of Roweynnok, dated at Pontefract, A.D. 1283, transferring the abbot and monks of Stanlaw to Whalley.’
18/8/1257On 18th August 1257, Sir Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was granted the right to hold a weekly market and annual fair at Tanshelf, Pontefract.
23/8/1271On 23rd August 1271, Edmund de Lacy, son of Sir Henry de Lacy, 9th Earl of Lincoln and lord of Pontefract, was born at Denbigh. A contract of marriage to Maud de Chaworth was signed in 1287 (she was five years old and the marriage was never consummated) but Edmund drowned in a well at Denbigh Castle sometime before 30th December 1291. Edmund’s brother John fell to his death from a tower at Pontefract Castle sometime before 1311, leaving their surviving sister, Alice, to become countess of Lincoln in her own right on her father’s death.
23/8/1273On 23rd August 1273, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, gave the Chapel of St Nicholas in Pontefract to the Abbey of St John in Pontefract.
29/8/1212On 29th August 1212, King John was at Pontefract and is reputed to have met Peter of Pontefract (or Wakefield), a hermit blessed with the gift of prophecy. Peter had foretold that by Ascension Day, 23rd May 1213, John’s crown would pass to another. Peter was imprisoned at Corfe Castle under the ‘care’ of William Harcourt. The following year, on Ascension Day, John set up his tent in a field at Ewell, feasted and openly displayed his good health and status.
1/9/1255In September 1255, Sir Edmund de Lacy, Lord of Pontefract, performed a crucial service to Henry III in being part of a royal and noble party conducting Alexander III, king of Scotland who was still a minor, and his wife, Margaret (Henry’s daughter) to meet Henry. Rumours had been circulating for some time that the royal couple had been treated poorly by their Scottish guardians, Robert Ross and John Balliol.
4/9/1227On 4th September 1227, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was Joint Ambassador to the German Congress at Antwerp, on behalf of Henry III.
5/9/1255On 5th September 1255, Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was styled Earl of Lincoln albeit there is some doubt as to whether he was actually invested as Earl as he predeceased his mother, Margaret de Quincy, but not his father, John de Lacy, who was Earl of Lincoln jure uxoris (by right of his wife).
6/9/1230On 6th September 1230, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was Joint Commissioner, on behalf of Henry III, to make a truce with France.
10/9/1299On 10th September 1299, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, attended the marriage at Canterbury of Edward I and Margaret of France, daughter of Philip III and sister to Philip IV. Eleanor of Castile, the first wife of Edward I, had died in 1290. This marriage, and the arranged later marriage (25th January 1308) of Prince Edward to Philip IV’s daughter, Isabella, were both factors in Edward I’s securing the return of Gascony to him. De Lacy was charged by the king in determining who should receive the cloths which had been used over the heads of Edward and his new wife.  
11/9/1277On 11th September 1277, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was with Edward I at Rhuddlan after the surrender of Welsh 'rebel' leader, Llywelyn ap Gruffudd. Edward had sent some 2000 soldiers to Anglesey to deprive Llyweyln of ‘his granary’ giving him no alternative. De Lacy and the Earl of Warwick were the only magnates with Edward after most of the royal infantry and cavalry had been released after the successful Welsh campaign and were on hand during the building of the new castle at Rhuddlan and negotiations for the terms of Llywelyn’s surrender.
14/9/1237On 14th September 1237, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, and several other lords were in attendance with Henry III at York when he met Scotland’s king, Alexander II (Henry’s brother-in-law), to see Alexander renew his homage to Henry for his English lands. The Treaty of York was signed on the 25th September.
20/9/1213On 20th September 1213, at Tickhill Castle in South Yorkshire, King John granted John de Lacy his inheritance (his father Roger having died in 1211) of five northern baronies but imposed a 7000 marks’ relief (£9.6m value today) repayable within three years. The king refused, however, to hand over the de Lacy castles at Pontefract and Donington and required him to pay for their garrisons. De Lacy was also told that should he join with the king’s enemies, he would lose all his lands forever.
22/9/1200On 22nd September 1200, Roger de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was with King John at Lincoln as witness to William the Lion’s, King of Scotland, public submission and act of homage to John.
23/9/1217On 23rd September 1217, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was ordered to oversee the restoration of Carlisle Castle by Alexander II, king of Scotland, and later on the 6th November accompany Alexander to meet Henry III.
2/10/1295The auditing of the de Lacy (Henry, lord of Pontefract) accounts for 1295—6 was carried out between October and December, beginning at Pontefract on 2nd October and ending at Denbigh on 9th December. Between these dates, the auditors travelled to Bolingbroke, Wrangle and Swaton (Lincs.) in October, to Kingston Lacy (Dorset), Aldbourne (Wilts.), and Halton (Cheshire) in November, and then to Sedgebrook (Lincs.), and Kneesall (Notts.) in December.
3/10/1283On 3rd October 1283, the ‘rebel’ Welsh lord Dafydd ap Gruffud, Prince of Wales, was hanged, drawn and quartered in Shrewsbury on the orders of Edward I: the first prominent person recorded to have been executed in this manner. Dafydd and his younger son, Owain ap Dafydd, had been captured on 22nd June and his other son, Llywelyn ap Dafydd, on the 28th of that month. On 15th July 1283, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, had been issued with letters patent to have custody of, and deliver, as hostage, Llywelyn to Richard de Boys. Both of Dafydd’s sons were imprisoned at Bristol Castle; Llywelyn dying in mysterious circumstances in 1287 or 1288 whilst his brother lived at least until August 1325.
7/10/1282On 7th October 1282, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was with Edward I at Rhuddlan witnessing a grant of land to John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey and owner of Sandal Castle.
13/10/1272On 13th October 1272, Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was knighted at Westminster and confirmed as Earl of Lincoln: his minority was now officially at an end. Henry had received formal relief for his mother and himself for payments due for wardship of his lands in February 1272 having paid £335 (£342,000 in today's money) to the keeper of the works at Westminster.
13/10/1289On 13th October 1289, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was given the role of one of the commissioners investigating alleged abuses of royal officials during Edward I’s three years’ absence on the continent.
16/10/1282On 16th October 1282, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was awarded the cantrefs (Welsh land division) of Ros and Rhufoniog and the commote (sub-division of a cantref) of Dinmael by Edward I as reward for loyal service and advice. These lands would form the lordship of Denbigh.
24/10/1252On 24th October 1252, as evidence of his favourable noble standing, Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was awarded a gift of six deer by Henry III from the forest of Rockingham.
25/10/1265On 25th October 1265, the Duchy of Lancaster, of which Pontefract Castle is now a part, was formally created. The inheritance was created in this year by Henry III for his youngest son, Edmund. The original grant was made from lands forfeited by Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester (1265) and those forfeited by Robert Ferrers, Earl of Derby were later added in 1266 (arising from the Barons’ War). These lands are still held by the Duchy of Lancaster today. In 1267 further lands were added to the inheritance namely the Honour and County of Lancaster, and Edmund was created as the first Earl of Lancaster. The inheritance became known as the Duchy of Lancaster. Although the Duchy of Lancaster name itself stems from 1267, the inheritance of lands go back to 1265. Pontefract Castle was incorporated into the Duchy on the death of Henry de Lacy in 1311.
28/10/1294On 28th October 1294, Alice de Lacy and Thomas Earl of Lancaster married. Alice was 13 and Thomas about 16. The marriage was not successful and they lived quite separate lives. Whether they divorced or not (possibly in 1318) is debatable. During his lifetime Thomas had control of her inheritance from her father, Henry de Lacy. By the terms of their marriage settlement, the bulk of her great inheritance from her father, which included the earldom of Lincoln and many other estates, was to go to Thomas, with reversion to Thomas's heirs. Her father also came to an agreement with the king that should Alice have no children, her father's Earldom of Lincoln would pass into the royal family on her death.
1/11/1297Thomas of Lancaster, later lord of Pontefract, first saw service on the Flanders campaign of 1297-8 and it was on this expedition that he was knighted at Ghent on All Saints Day 1297. As far as we know, this was the only occasion during his public life when he went overseas. Unlike his father, Thomas held few lands abroad, nor did he serve in France as a diplomat or soldier as his father, Edmund, had done. In contrast, he served in Scotland over a long period: he was at Falkirk in 1298; at Caerlaverock in 1300; at Perth with the Prince in the winter of 1303-4; and with him again in the campaign of 1306-7.
1/11/1298In November 1298, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was rewarded by Edward I for his efforts in the Scottish campaign with the title and lands of James, Steward of Scotland, including the baronry of Renfrew.
4/11/1250On 4th November 1250, Edmund de Lacy, later lord of Pontefract, was awarded a grant for a weekly market to move from Thursday to Sunday in his Bradford manor and two days later was pardoned for misdemeanours committed in the royal forest.
5/11/1237In early November 1237, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, along with Simon de Montfort, on the authorisation of Henry III, acted as bodyguards to the papal legate, Otto of Tonengo, whilst he presided over the synod at St Paul’s, which adopted reforms in line with the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215. Dissatisfied clerics were wary of their wealth being threatened.
9/11/1215On 9th November 1215, William de Warenne, 5th Earl of Surrey and owner of Sandal Castle, was Joint Envoy to the Barons and citizens of London concerning King John’s difficulties over Magna Carta.
10/11/1277On 10th November 1277, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, escorted the defeated Welsh 'rebel' leader, Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, to Rhuddlan in order to submit to Edward I.
11/11/1294On 11th November 1294, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, as part of the renewed Welsh campaign of Edward I, was attacked by his own Welsh tenants and compelled to retreat when he tried to relieve Denbigh Castle (which he had been awarded in 1282). The following year, five Welsh hostages were conveyed through de Lacy's territories to Pontefract Castle.
12/11/1287On 12th November 1287, Abbot Hugh of Kirkstall Abbey described in a letter to his convent the tiring journey he had made to Gascony in search of Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, to seek financial help to repay the Abbey’s creditors: “here we found our patron, the Earl of Lincoln, with other great men of the Court, attending upon the King; and to him we explained fully and to the best of our ability the distresses of the House. He was touched with pity at our representation, and promise us all the information and assistance in his power”.
16/11/1295On 16th November 1295, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, obtained a pardon from Edward I for his steward, William de Stopham, who was to travel with him to Gascony, for marrying without the king’s licence.  
22/11/1232On 22nd November 1232, John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was granted the third penny of the county of Lincolnshire after the death of his wife’s (Margaret) uncle Ranulph, Earl of Lincoln, on 26th October that year. This was the prelude to de Lacy’s formal investiture as Earl. The ‘third penny’ meant that de Lacy would receive one-third of the revenues of justice of the shire (£20 or over £31,000 in today’s money)
23/11/1232On 23rd November 1232, by a charter dated at Northampton, John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract and his wife, Margaret (only daughter and heir of Robert de Quincy, Earl of Winchester and Hawyse, youngest sister and co-heir of Ranulph de Mechines, Earl of Chester and Lincoln) were formally invested by Henry III as 2nd Earl and 2nd Countess of Lincoln. John obtained the title by right of his wife who, herself, had inherited the title via her mother and uncle who had died on 26th October that year. Ranulph had formally granted the Earldom of Lincoln to his sister ‘to the end that she might be countess, and that her heirs might also enjoy the earldom’. Margaret had specifically requested the king that her husband, John de Lacy, be created Earl of Lincoln with remainder to the heirs of his body by her. Ranulph’s principal barony, Bolingbroke, was retained by de Lacy’s mother-in-law, Hawyse until her death in 1243. Hawyse, herself, had been granted the title by formal charter in April 1231 and was invested as suo jure 1st Countess of Lincoln on the day after her brother Ranulph’s death, effectively holding it for less than a month.
28/11/1223On 28th November 1223, Henry III and Hubert de Burgh, 1st Earl of Kent and Chief Justiciar (king’s deputy during his minority), met a group of nobles including John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, in London to try to resolve a declaration by Pope Honorius III on April 23rd that year. The pope, in seeking to increase contributions to his plans for a crusade had declared that Henry was then to be considered of age and should be allowed to retake possession of castles that had been held by others during his minority. Henry had, initially, ordered that Hereford and Gloucester castles be handed over to de Burgh, sparking an outrage amongst the affected and liable nobles. Despite some conciliatory suggestions to Henry by the pope, Archbishop Langton’s threat of excommunication of the barons unless the identified castles were returned, and Henry’s promise that the properties were to be reclaimed in a fair manner, caused the barons to submit.
3/12/1293On 3rd December 1293, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was granted more markets and fairs and the rights of free warren (exemption from penalties for killing game within ‘royal’ areas) in many of his demesne lands including Knottingley, Ouston, Campsall, Thorner, Altofts, Seacroft, Shadwell and Roundhay.
10/12/1297On 10th December 1297, John de Warenne, 6th Earl of Surrey and owner of Sandal Castle, was made Captain, North of Trent, and against the Scots by Edward I.
23/12/1252On 23rd December 1252, Peter of Chester (or Peter of Lascy, illegitimate son of John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, Constable of Chester and Earl of Lincoln) was called a kinsman of the Earl of Lincoln in a mandate by Pope Innocent IV to the Bishop of London to grant him dispensation to hold benefices (a church appointment for which property and income are provided in respect of pastoral duties) in plurality to the value of £100 a year (£165,000 in today’s money).
23/12/1256On 23rd December 1256, a covenant was agreed between Sir Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, and Sir William Longspee, Earl of Salisbury, for a marriage between Henry, Edmund’s heir and Margaret, William’s daughter, with a stipulation that if Henry were to die “before contracting the said marriage, then John, the younger son of Edmund shall be married to her”.
25/12/1249On Christmas Day 1249 (other dates quoted are 19th December and the following 6th January), Henry de Lacy, the greatest and last of the (male) de Lacy baronial family, was born. He succeeded his father, Edmund, as a minor in 1258, inheriting the titles Baron of Pontefract, Baron of Halton and hereditary Constable of Chester.  He became 3rd Earl of Lincoln (from 1266) and 1st Lord of Denbigh (from 1282). As a ward to large estates, he was educated at the court of Henry III. He inherited the title of Earl of Lincoln from his paternal grandmother. He served Edward I as a soldier and diplomat in Wales, Scotland and France becoming commander of the English forces in Gascony in 1296. He was one of the 21 Lords Ordainers appointed in 1311 seeking to curtail the powers of Edward II. His only daughter and heiress, Alice de Lacy, married Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster.    
25/12/1277On 25th December 1277, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was with Edward I at Westminster when the defeated Welsh 'rebel' leader, Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, paid formal homage to the king.
25/12/1281Alice de Lacy was born at Denbigh Castle on 25th Dec 1281. She was fourth countess of Lincoln, fifth countess of Salisbury and daughter of Henry de Lacy Baron of Pontefract. Her mother was Margaret Longespée, 4th Countess of Salisbury and the great-granddaughter of an illegitimate son of Henry II of England, William Longespée (Longsword), whose nickname became his surname.
26/12/1292On 26th December 1292, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was at Newcastle with Edward I when John Balliol (now king of Scotland) paid formal homage to Edward as overlord of Scotland.
26/12/1298On 26th December 1298, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, headed a commission (in the king’s stead) hearing an appeal brought by Landus Bouacursi against two merchants accused of counterfeiting the king’s great and privy seal (the seal of Prince Edward, the king’s son) and plotting to poison Edward I and the prince.
27/12/1252On 27th December 1252, Edmund de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, was knighted by Henry III.
28/12/1292On 28th December 1292, Sir Henry de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, received confirmation of the restoration of the castle, town and honour of Pontefract, earlier surrendered to the Crown as part of the marriage arrangements of his daughter, Alice, to Thomas, Earl of Lancaster.
29/12/1277It is surmised that Edmund of Lancaster and Blanche of Artois’ eldest child, Thomas (later Earl of Lancaster and lord of Pontefract) was born on or around 29th December 1277, his name indicating a reference to Thomas Beckett’s murder on this date, one hundred and seven years before.
31/12/1215On 31st December 1215, King John granted John de Lacy, lord of Pontefract, conducts (effectively safe passage) to last a year from the following 2nd January; the very generous terms probably acknowledging de Lacy’s significance to the rebel cause. De Lacy was to surrender Pontefract to the king two days later after mediation by the Earl of Chester.