LEKE, Henry (by 1526-58 or later), ?of London.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Apr. 1554

Family and Education

b. by 1526, s. of John Leke of Worksop, Notts. by Margaret, da. of Sir William Paston of Caister and Oxnead, Norf. suc. fa. by July 1553.2

Offices Held

Dep. auditor, ct. augmentations, Cornw., Devon, Dorset and Som. by 1548-54.3


Henry Leke was deputy auditor of augmentations to Matthew Colthurst, a servant of the Protector Somerset. Colthurst’s previous deputy, Ralph Lambe, is not known to have acted after 1546 and Leke may have replaced him then, although his first certificate for Devon is dated 27 Feb. 1548. After the dissolution of the court of augmentations certificates for west-country grants were issued by John Hornyold, one of the auditors of the Exchequer: Hornyold, compiling a list of the debts of the office for which he had assumed responsibility, discovered a fraud committed by Leke in 1553. Leke was called before Treasurer Winchester, confessed that he had failed to account for £100 which he had received, and was sent to the Fleet. After three months in prison he appeared before the Star Chamber and was ordered to pay a fine of £100, to stand in the pillory and to appear before all the courts in Westminster Hall with a paper upon his head with his offence—‘an auditor for false usage in his office’: after which he was to return to the Fleet. Eventually he was freed and his fine remitted ‘in respect of his poverty’.4

Leke’s return for Lyme Regis to the Parliament of 1547 is doubtless to be attributed to his official position and connexions, particularly through Colthurst. His kin may have encouraged him to seek Membership on this occasion, as two of his uncles, John Paston and Sir Francis Leke, procured their own election to this Parliament. By 1554, when Leke was re-elected, Colthurst had attached himself to the 1st Earl of Pembroke. Since Pembroke was constable of Devizes castle, it is likely that Leke was a nominee of the earl’s for the borough, as was his fellow-Member Thomas Highgate: the names of both Leke and Highgate were inserted in a different hand in the election indenture. The Journal does not mention Leke.5

In 1552 Leke was granted a 21-year lease of the manor house at Iwerne Courtnay in Dorset but within a few years he had surrendered his title. He probably lived in London and may have been the Henry Leke of the parish of St. Bartholomew the Great whose widow Jane (by then married to Roger Edwards) obtained administration of his estate in October 1561.6

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: Helen Miller


  • 1. Hatfield 207.
  • 2. Presumed to be of age at election. Harl. 1093, f. 16; CPR, 1553, p. 227.
  • 3. Stowe 571, f. 9v; Devon Monastic Lands (Devon and Cornw. Rec. Soc. n.s. i), xvi.
  • 4. Devon Monastic Lands, 100; Lansd. 106, f. 61; Harl. 2143, f. 7.
  • 5. C219/22/100.
  • 6. CPR, 1553, p. 227; 1557-8, p. 298; PCC Admins. ed. Glencross, i. 22.