Hospitals
St Edmund, King & Martyr, Gateshead

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Victoria County History

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William Page (editor)

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1907

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124-125

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'Hospitals: St Edmund, King & Martyr, Gateshead', A History of the County of Durham: Volume 2 (1907), pp. 124-125. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=39897 Date accessed: 30 August 2014.


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28. THE HOSPITAL OF ST. EDMUND, KING AND MARTYR, GATESHEAD

The origin of the hospital of St. Edmund the King is unknown. (fn. 1) The earliest mention of it (fn. 2) occurs in 1315, when the bishop of Durham collated Hugh de Lokington to the wardenship, and directed the bailiff of Gateshead to put him in seisin of the hospital. (fn. 3) There is no contemporary record of the endowment, but in a report of the house issued by the Royal Commissioners, in 1594, it is stated that its possessions consisted of 'a demesne lying at the hospital and a parcel of ground called Shotley Bridge,' the total value of which is given as £10. (fn. 4) In October, 1378, Bishop Hatfield, who had earlier in the year ordered a visitation of the house, (fn. 5) granted to it in free alms three cottages 'all lying within the soil of the said hospital'; (fn. 6) and in Hatfield's Survey c. 1382) it is stated that the master of the hospital of St. Edmund the King holds 'placeam pro quodam chamino' from the hospital as far as Friar's Goose (le Frergos) by the park of the lord of the same, for which a rent of 4d. was paid. (fn. 7)

Bishop Neville granted to the master a licence to work coals in the hospital lands and lead them to the Tyne, over the bishop's soil, paying to him and his successors £5 per annum; (fn. 8) and Bishop Booth (1467-8) gave permission for the coals to be carried to the bishop's staithes on the river. (fn. 9)

The hospital was founded for poor persons of both sexes. (fn. 10) In Bishop Hatfield's grant its inmates are described as 'brethren, sisters, and paupers.' The report of 1594 states that a sum of 13s. per annum was assigned for the relief of each poor brother and sister, and the rest of the revenue of the house, excepting what was spent on repairs, was at the disposal of the master. The inmates were admitted, removed, and corrected at the master's discretion. (fn. 11)

Beyond occasional notices of the appointment of masters there is scarcely any mention of the house until 1546, when the following account of it is given by the commissioners appointed by Henry VIII:

The hospital of St. Edmund in the parish of Gateshead was founded by the predecessors of the bishops (sic) of Durham by report, but to what intent or purpose we know not, for we have not yet seen the foundation thereof. Yearly value, 109s. 4d.—value according to this survey £8 as appeareth by rental; whereof is paid out for the King's Majesty's tenths 12s. 3d. and remaineth clearly £7 7s. 9d., which Dr. Bellasis, now Master of the same, hath towards his living, and giveth out of the same four marks by the year to a priest to say Mass there twice in the week for the commodity and easement of the parishioners that do dwell far from the Parish Church. (fn. 12) It stands about half a mile distant from the Parish Church of Gateshead aforesaid. Value of ornaments, etc., nil, for there be neither goods ne ornaments pertaining to the same to our knowledge. There were no other lands nor yearly profits, etc. (fn. 13)

Though, in 1594, the inmates had dwindled to three—two old men and one woman—the hospital continued to exist after the dissolution, and was re-founded by James I in January, 1610-11. Unfortunately all the documents relating to the house from the time of its foundation had been entrusted, in 1587, to John Woodfall, the then master. He died almost immediately afterwards at his home in London, the evidences were lost, and no trace has been found of them since. (fn. 14) James ordained that the establishment should consist of a master and three poor men, and should be called 'King James' Hospital'; and he endowed it with the house and lands 'which the master and brethren had uninterruptedly held and enjoyed for the last sixty years.' (fn. 15) Since the date of King James' foundation the rectors of Gateshead have successively occupied the position of master of the hospital.

Masters of the Hospital of St. Edmund the King, Gateshead

Hugh of Lokington, coll. 9 June, 1315. (fn. 16)

Richard, occ. 1366. (fn. 17)

William of Brantingham, occ. 1374, (fn. 18) 1378. (fn. 19)

Reginald Porter, coll. 1399. (fn. 20)

John Newton, coll. 1407, p.r. R. Porter. (fn. 21)

John King, coll. 1410-11, p.r. J. Newton, (fn. 22) occ. 1436. (fn. 23)

John Shirwood, occ. 1467, (fn. 24) 1469. (fn. 25)

A Master, name unknown, occ. 1507. (fn. 26)

Anthony Bellasis, occ. 16 January 1544-5, (fn. 27) 1546. (fn. 28)

Robert Claxton, occ. 1552. (fn. 29)

John Woodfall, coll. 6 May, 1579, (fn. 30) died c. 1587. (fn. 31)

Clement Colmore, coll. 4 February, 1587-8. (fn. 32)

The rector of Gateshead for the time being.

Footnotes

1 It has generally been supposed to be identical with the hospital of St. Edmund the Bishop, a mistake which probably arose from a confusion of names in James I's charter of re-foundation. Hutchinson suggests that there were two separate establishments (Hist. Dur. ii, 460), and the information now at our disposal clearly proves him to be right.
2 Unless this is the 'Hospital of Gateshead' mentioned in the Taxatio of 1292, of which the value is given as £18. (Brand, Hist. Newcastle, i, 469 n.)
3 Reg. Palat. Dun. (Rolls Ser.), ii, 706-7.
4 Arch. Aeliana (New Ser.), vi, 43-4.
5 Dur. Epis. Reg. Hatfield, fol. 140d.
6 Rot. B. Hatfield, m. 11 d.
7 Hatf. Surv. (Surt. Soc.), 88.
8 Arch. Aeliana (New Ser.), vi, 44, note 7.
9 Rot. 3; Booth, m. 9 d.
10 Arch. Aeliana (New Ser.), vi, 43-4.
11 Ibid.
12 Cf. A Picture of Newcastle, pub. 1807, pp. 94-5. In the report of 1594 the hospital is described as standing 'at the upper end of Gateshead.' In the chantry certificate of 1548 there is an entry (under Gateshead) as follows: ' The service of one priest within the hospital of St. Edmund for the term or ninety-nine years, by an indenture,' dated temp. Hen. VIII, 'incumbent, Robert Lynsey. Yearly revenue, £4 13s. 4d. Stock, none.' This probably refers to the hospital of St. Edmund the King. In the list of hospitals in the bishop's collation in Bishop Tunstall's Epis. Reg. 1530, the value of 'Gateshead Hospital' is given as £3.
13 Chantry Cert. printed, Brand, Hist. Newcastle, i, 473.
14 Com. Rep. Arch. Aeliana (New Ser.), vi, 44. Hence the vague and confused wording of King James' charter.
15 Found. Chart. printed, Hutchinson, Hist. Dur. ii, 458 n. Hutchinson thinks that the wording of the charter suggests that the hospital had perhaps been refounded or re-endowed after the dissolution.
16 Reg. Palat. Dun. (Rolls Ser.), ii, 706.
17 Dur. Epis. Reg. Hatfield, fol. 141.
18 Surt. Hist. Dur. ii, 127.
19 Rot. B. Hatfield, m. 11 d.
20 Bourne, Hist. Newcastle, 207; cf. Hutchinson, Hist. Dur. ii, 457 n.
21 Dur. Epis. Reg. Langley, fol. 10.
22 Ibid. fol. 40.
23 Ibid. fol. 246 d.
24 Surt. Hist. Dur. ii, 127.
25 Pat. 9 Edw. IV, pt. 1, m. 24.
26 Script. Tres. (Surt. Soc.), App. cccxvi.
27 Allan, Coll. relating to Sherburn.
28 Chantry Cert. printed by Brand, Hist. Newcastle, 1,473.
29 Surt. Hist. Dur. ii, 127.
30 Dur. Epis. Reg. Barnes, fol. 5 d.
31 Royal Com. Rep. 1594.
32 Dur. Epis. Reg. Barnes.