This Day in History: 1317-06-16

Around 14th June 1317, the people of Bromfield and Yale, in North Wales, wrote to their lord, John de Warenne ,Earl of Surrey and owner of Sandal Castle, to tell him that they had been threatened by Thomas of Lancaster, lord of Pontefract, who had written to them to say that he meant to have their land and that if they behaved well towards him he would be a good lord to them, but that he would have the country ‘une manere ou autre’. They appealed to Warenne for help, saying that they could do nothing against such a great power and begged him to ask the king to order the Justices of Wales and Chester and the sheriffs to go to their aid. De Warenne forwarded a copy of this petition to the King on 14th June, expressing surprise that the Earl should act in this way. He asked for speedy help from the justices and the king’s men in those parts for the defence of his lands and the king’s honour. A minute of the council’s decision on the matter survives. De Warenne was to be told to go to Bromfield to guard his own lands if he wished, while Lancaster was to be informed of de Warenne’s message to the king and ordered to refrain from breaking the peace in that region; letters close to this effect were sent to Lancaster on 16th June.