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John Goring of Burton, Sussex
(-After 1499)
Joan Hewster
Henry Dyke
Eleanor Pagenham
John Goring of Burton, Sussex
(Abt 1480-1520)
Constance Dyke
Sir William Goring of Burton, Sussex
(Bef 1500-1554)


Family Links

1. Elizabeth Covert

Sir William Goring of Burton, Sussex 2 3

  • Born: Bef 1500
  • Marriage (1): Elizabeth Covert before 1521 1 2
  • Died: 2 Mar 1554, London, GB 4
  • Buried: 10 Mar 1554, St. Richard's Church, Burton Park, Duncton, Petworth, West Sussex, GU28 0QU, GB

   Find a Grave ID: 176577048.

  General Notes:

Family and Education
b. by 1500, 1st s. of John Goring of Burton by Constance, da. of Henry Dyke of Suss. m. by 1521, Elizabeth (d. 10 Nov. 1558), da. and h. of John Covert of Slaugham, 3s. inc. George 2da. suc. fa. 1520. Kntd. 1526.2

Offices Held
Sheriff, Surr. and Suss. 1530-1, 1535-6, 1550-1; j.p. Suss. 1532-d.; knight of the body by 1533; commr. musters, Suss. 1539, chantries 1548, relief 1550, church goods Suss., Chichester 1552; chamberlain, household of Queen Anne of Cleves 1540-6; gent. the privy chamber by 1547-d.3

William Goring's forbears took their surname from the village near Worthing where they lived until the late 15th century, when they settled at Burton, some three miles south of Petworth. Goring's father married a local heiress and thereby gained a modest estate, once belonging to the Dawtreys, which enabled John Goring and his descendants to take part in local government.4

Nothing has come to light about William Goring's upbringing or about his life in the years after he became head of the family. In 1526 the King made a progress through the southern counties and while in Sussex he knighted Goring. Although Goring was to make his career as a courtier, Household official and local administrator, it was not for four years after this honour that he continued his upward progress, his first shrievalty being followed by his appointment to the local bench, where he was soon to be rated indispensable. As a justice Goring came to the notice of Cromwell, and fragments of an official correspondence between them survive. In 1533 he attended the coronation of Anne Boleyn, where he acted as a server at the banquet, and not long afterwards he appears on a list of members of the royal household. He was serving his second term as sheriff when the north rebelled in 1536: on account of ill-health and official duties he excused himself from answering the summons to help suppress the rebellion, but he did muster troops which were sent northwards and he claimed to have thwarted any possibility of a rising in Sussex. In 1537 he attended the christening of Prince Edward and a year later his loyalty to the regime was instrumental in the uncovering of the Pole conspiracy. His dislike of Cardinal Pole was not simply a matter of personal incompatibility, for Goring apparently thought all popery suspect, particularly monks displaced by the Dissolution. This nascent Protestantism presumably commended him to Cromwell and helped to procure for him in 1539 the minister's approval of his nomination by Sir William Fitzwilliam, Earl of Southampton, as one of the knights of the shire for Sussex in the Parliament of that year. No trace has been found of his part in this Parliament, but between its sessions he helped to demolish St. Richard's shrine in Chichester cathedral and after its dissolution he was the recipient with his fellow-knight Sir John Gage of a letter about the collection of the recently granted subsidy.5

It was doubtless with Cromwell's assistance that Goring obtained his chamberlainship in the household of Anne of Cleves, but he did not suffer in the palace revolution of the summer of 1540, retaining his post under the displaced Queen, although in August of that year he took the precaution of obtaining permission to return home before leaving the court. In 1543 he served with the military expedition against France and a year later he accompanied the King on the campaign which ended in the capture of Boulogne. His ascendancy may have led to his being re-elected with Gage for Sussex in either or both of the last two Parliaments of Henry VIII's reign, in 1542 and 1545, but the loss of the returns makes this uncertain. On leaving the service of Anne of Cleves, Goring became a gentleman of the privy chamber and at the accession of Edward VI he was given charge of some of the Howard property in Sussex before it was granted to Admiral Seymour. With Seymour he seems to have stood well, as his responsibility for these properties was renewed by the admiral, who also gave him other charges and leases in the county. In the autumn of 1547 Goring took his place in the Commons as the senior knight for the shire, his colleague being his 'cousin' John Palmer. He is not mentioned in the Journal. When Seymour was executed for treason he dissociated himself from the admiral and was confirmed in all the posts and leases which he had held of that patron; two years later his third shrievalty showed that he was trusted by the new government headed by the Duke of Northumberland. After the dissolution of the Parliament of 1547 he was granted, perhaps as a mark of Northumberland's favour, the reversion of two manors in Sussex held by Anne of Cleves, but it is unlikely that he sat in the Parliament of March 1553, which met under the duke's aegis, for in the course of that month he was ordered by the Council to inquire into sedition at Chichester: the names of the two knights for Sussex on this occasion have been lost, but one was almost certainly Sir Richard Sackville and the other may have been John Palmer.6

As Edward VI approached his end, Goring himself fell ill and on 6 May 1553, as he lay in his great chamber at Burton, he made his will. After asking to be buried in the parish church, he ordered the following inscription to be placed over his tomb:

O God forget my sins and impute them not unto me
But forgive me for thy dear son Jesus Christ's sake
And indict me according unto thy inscrutable mercy
For if we say that we have no sin we deceive ourselves
And there is no truth in us.

He divided his property, chattels and livestock between his wife, children and grandchildren. He also left to his wife all the plate given to him by Anne of Cleves and Edward VI and to his eldest son Henry the rich clothes presented by the King. After remembering his servants he appointed his son Henry executor and Thomas, 9th Lord La Warr, Sir John Kingsmill, John Covert, Edward Shelley and his own son George Goring supervisors. Unlike the King, Goring made a recovery which prolonged his life until 2 Mar 1554, when he died in London on a visit to Queen Mary. His body was taken by barge to Kingston-upon-Thames, and then overland to Burton where eight days later it was buried.7

Author: R. J.W. Swales

1. E159/319, brev. ret. Mich. r. [1-2].
2. Date of birth estimated from marriage. Vis. Suss. (Harl. Soc. liii), 45-46; Comber, Suss. Genealogies (Ardingly), 180; Suss. Arch. Colls. xxiii. 142; H. H. Leonard, 'Knights and knighthood' (London Univ. Ph.D. thesis, 1970), 163.
3. LP Hen. VIII, v. ix, xiii-xv, xx; CPR, 1547-8, p. 90; 1548-9, p. 135; 1550-3, pp. 52, 142, 395-6; E179/69/48; Stowe 571, f. 30.
4. J. R. Mousley, 'Suss. country gentry in the reign of Eliz.' (London Univ. Ph.D. thesis, 1956), 541-9.
5. LP Hen. VIII, ii, vi, x-xv; Leonard, 321; Suss. Rec. Soc. xxxvi. 133.
6. LP Hen. VIII, xvi-xxi; SP10/1, f. 28v; CPR, 1550-3, p. 300; HMC Bath, iv. 336; APC, iv. 238; Stowe 571, f. 55.
7. PCC 38 More; Machyn's Diary (Cam. Soc. xlii), 58; Suss. Rec. Soc. xiv. 105; Suss. Arch. Colls. xxiii. 142; Nairn and Pevsner, Suss. 123.

[The History of Parliament 1509-1558]


The said Sr. Wm. Goring (the common Ancestor) dyed on or about the year 1553 leaving Henry Goring his Eldest Son and Heir...

[An Acct. of Mr Goring's Title to the Manor of Balneth] 1 5

  Burial Notes:

Memorial for Sir William Goring (d1553) and his wife Elizabeth (d1558): the shafts of the crested canopy have shallow incised renaissance decoration. However, it has a miniature pendant vault, the sides have Gothic panelling and there are cusped quatrefoils on the base. Though more modest, it is stylistically as mixed as contemporary monuments at Arundel or Boxgrove. Instead of effigies, kneeling brasses were placed on the back together with seemingly randomly distributed coats of arms and inscriptions. These have been ascribed to the Nayle Group, an offshoot of Group G of the London workshops. The effigy of the man is missing, as are those of the eight children. However, the surviving female effigy is unusual for uniquely for a woman then, Elizabeth Goring wears a tabard over her dress, probably because she was heiress of the Coverts of Slaugham.


• Manorial Estate, 1520-1554, Lancing Manor, Lancing, West Sussex, BN15, GB. 6 In 1400 Richard Radmyld died seised of Lancing, his brother and heir Ralph being named as lord in 1412. From 1426 Lancing descended with the Radmyld moiety of Broadwater (after 1457 the whole manor). After the death of William Radmyld in 1499, however, it diverged from that descent, passing after complicated transactions to Radmyld's cousin and co-heir John Goring of Burton, whose family had held lands in Lancing since the late 14th century. After John's death in 1520 the manor passed from father to son through Sir William (d. 1553/4), Sir Henry (d. 1594), Sir William (d. 1601-2), Sir Henry (d. 1626), Sir William (d. 1658), Sir Henry (d. 1671), and Sir William (d. 1724).

• Will, 16 Oct 1520. 3 7 In the name of god crist Jhesus I John Gorynge beynge in good perfyct mynde & helthe
thanks be therfor to god make this my last will and testament this present xvj day of
October in the xijth yere of the reigne of Kyng Henry the viiith in manner and forme folowing
First I will my soule unto the Eternall and Blessed Trynyte or Blessed Lady Saint Mary
And unto all the blessed and holy Company of hevyn and Comiytt the same unto the
Inestymable grace mercy and petye of God Almyghty My body to be buried within the Churche
of Burketon nygh my Fader and myne executors to make a Tombe upon my buriall by
Theyre dyscrecion with this Writtyng Delicta juventut' meae, et ignorancias meas, ne memin
eris Domine Item firstly I will my detts be paid And that my grantfathers Will be performed
on evry poynt and Article that is not now performed Item I will unto the prior of Derford
& unto all the ladies there to pray devoutly for me xl vs And so I hartely desire theym
to do of there charitie And I wolde they hadde spedely knowledge of my dethe and departure
and in lyke wise and fourme & to lyke intent and purpose I will unto my lady of Syon
and the ladies ther xx sh Also in lykewise and to lyke entent & purpose I will unto the prior
of heryngham and the Convent there to say and syng devoutly for me as spedely as they
candle Masses and say solempne durge xl ?s the same xl ?s to be devyded between
the said prior of heryngham and his convent? By myn Executors Item I will unto the
Mother Church of Chichester xl?s Item I will unto the prior of Tortyngton and the
Covent ther to saye and singe solemply son masse and dirge x sh The same x sh? to
be devided betwene the said prior of Tortyngton and his Covente by myn executors

Item I will unto olde Master Saint John iij li vj sh viij d in full recompense and satysfaccon of all …the
money and duetye as I owe hym for serteyn lands that I bought of hym beside Midhurst that Bagger
nowe occupieth so that he release unto my feoffees and heries as myn executours shall think
convenyent Item I will unto Joane Pollard and her husband vj s viiid in full payment of ten
pounds that my granntfather willed her by hys last Will Item I will unto eny Mayden
servant that I have vjs viijd over and beside there wages And to every Manservant iij sh iiij d ?
over and beside his wage to pray for me and my frends Item I will unto the iiij orders of
Freres in London every oon of theym x sh to saye for me every oon of theym C ? Masses whych
It lytthell above…… Masse And this to donne as spedely as may be Item I will that myn
Executours fynde oon honest preest to singe for me in the Church of Burketon by the space
of vii yeres next after my decease and he to have yerely tenne Marks to be levied and taking
of the yssue and profitts of my lands in Shepley and of my lands and tents in the Manwoode
that oon John Growte late helde and aoccupied. Item I will that William Gorynge my Sonne
have holy my Apparell perteynyng unto my Body and all my Books and all suche Stuff
& thyngs as I have in Greys Inne in London Item I will that myn evidents? be put
and kept in the priory of heryngham Saffely in a Coffer lokked with keyes And they then to
Remayne in the said priorey of Heryngham unto William Goryng .. to the full age of xxiiij
yeres And they the same Evidencs to be delyvered unto hym and not before the said William
Goryng to keep oon keye and the said prior the other keye And yf nede? Requyre of any of the said
evidences before the said xxiiij yeres (Then myn Executours to take over? Suche as nedith and
to delyver a bill) ? of of their hands to the said prior of suche as they have taken owte And to brynge
theym agen And then to have then bill agen Item I have iiij doughters unmarried that is
To saye Sybyll Elynore Jane and Anne Item I will the same iiij daughter CCCC li to there?
Mariage that is to saye every doughter oon hundreth pounds so that they be guyded ordered
and Ruled and …red by the advise or mynde of myn executours The Whych iiij
hundred pounds I will myn executours levy take and Receyve of my goods debts & catalls
yf it will soo farre stretche? And of my goods detts and catell suffise not to co… the
same Then I will that myn Executours levye and take the residew that lakketh or
remaineth of the Issues revenues amd profitts of all my lands & tenements Item I will that
yf it happens any of my saif iiij daughters to decease unmarried or to be a woman of
religyon Then I will that her or theyre parte and porcon of the said CCCCli so beynge
a Woman of Religion or deceassing unmaried go and be to the other of the said my doughters
Survyvyinge Except that I will that she or they so entrying ynto Religion have xC ti
Marks of her or there porcion to pray for me or to doo good dedys to the honour of god and
for the welth and prosperitie of the place of Relygion that she or they shall happen to
entre ynto Item I will that myne executours content & pay unto William Gorynge
oon hundred pounds in money and plate or in other stuffe to the value which
C li I will yt to be delyvered unto the said William when he cometh to the age of xxiiij
yeres & not before except myn executours thynketh the contrary to be convenyent
and profitable for hym Item at this present day Wiffe ?oweth me for?Sir Shurleys woll
Xxli xiis for Gras will xxli over and beside mistres Coke will and the ?vicars of
Rustynton wulle All whych I will my Wiffe have to her clerely with her Joynter
to fynde her daughters & Children Also I will that myn executors make oon Rynge
of golde of the value of iiij or v nobulls to geve the same unto my Suster Shurley to
pray for me and to remember me Item I will that myn executours have all my goods detts
& catells and over that resseyve the hole yssue revenuz and profitts of all my lands

tenements before specyfied by the space of ij yeres next after my decease to p[er]forme therewith his my Will payeng
unto William Goryng owte of the same yerely iij li vj s viij d Item I will unto William Goryng and the
heries of his body lawfully begotten all lands tenements Rents Revercions and ^^^^ that I have in
use or my possession in any place within England Immedyatly after my Will ys performed And
for defawte of such Issue all the same lands and tenements holy Remayne unto Henry Goryng and
to his heires for ever in fee symple Also I wyll that myn Executours over and above all the
premysses above specified ?resseyne? of the yssuez and profitts of all my lands all suche costs and
charges as they or any of them shall susteyne in executyng of this my last Will provided
always that eny thinge in this my Will be not in enywise hurtefull nor preiudiciall? unto the
Joyntor that I have made unto my wife in use or possession nor unto the Joynture that I have made
unto William Goryngs Wiffe Also I will to the Churche of Burketon a Chalyce price xxvjs viij d
Item to the same Churche a Baner? Cloth price x s Item to the same Churche ij kine to maynteyn
a light before the Roode ther whiche were delyvered unto John Goryng my grandfather for the
same intent Item I have promysed to the feofees of the Brethered of Burketon x sh yerely Wherfor
I will that my feoffez of all my lands and tenements graunt and yerely Rent of x s ? unto suche persone
as the said feoffees shall name and to their heyres to the use trust and intent that therewith
the said Brothered may be the better maynteyned. Item I will every godchilde that I have
within fouer parysshes of Burketon that is to saye Barlavington Sutton Donketon chappell and
Wullawyngton every of theym iijd Also I will that every of myn executors have for their labour
& payne iij li vj s viij d in rewarde Also I order and make by this presents Richard Covert John
Dawtrey thelder and the prior of heryngham myn executours And in the way of charitie desire
them to take upon theym as myn executours And I will yf ther be any ?clause worde or
article diffuse or doutefull in conser……. spesified in this my present will Then I wyll
the same Article chanse and worde be const…… expounded? & declared by the said Richard
Covert and John Dawtrey or the longer lyved of theym And suche const……& declaracon
at they or the longer lyver of theym shall make it is my very will that the same
const…… and declaracion shalbe taken repented and acepted as my very last will Item I
ordeyne & make my Brother Shurley Cofferer unto our Soveraigne lord the kynge Surveyor
& overseer of this my present will And that myn executours rewarde hym for his labour
vj li xiij s iiij d Written and done in the presence of John Dawtrey esquyer John Kingismyll
gent Sir Julyan Duboys parson of Burketon Richard Sutton John Westden et alys

[Transcribed by Helen Hartley]

• Title: Knight of the Body, 1526, Sussex, GB. King Henry VIII

• Residence: Burton Park, Duncton, Petworth, West Sussex, GU28 0QU, GB.

• Occupation: High Sheriff of Sussex, 1530-1531.

• Occupation: High Sheriff of Sussex, 1535-1536.

• Property, 1542, Chithurst Manor, Petersfield, West Sussex, GU31, GB. 8 By 1494 the manor was in the hands of James Bartelott, who in that year bequeathed it to his nephew Thomas Burdeville (son of his sister Elizabeth and John Burdeville). In default of issue to Thomas or his brother Richard it was to revert to the testator's nephew, Thomas Bartelott. Thomas Burdeville conveyed it in 1532 to John Warde and others; but this was presumably in trust for a settlement, as in 1542 Thomas Bartelott sold it to Sir William Goring, whose son George Goring, and his wife Mary, sold it in 1579 to Peter Bettesworth.

• Manorial Estate: Balneath Manor, Chailey, Lewes, East Sussex, BN8 4AP, GB. 9 Balneath (or Balneth) formed part of the possessions of St. Pancras Priory at Lewes until the Dissolution. It was perhaps identical with the land which William de Warenne granted to the priory about 1095, being his demesne land 'from Beuehorne (Bevern) Bridge to Cheagele (Chailey) from the east road to the road beside the Bridge of Hamwde', which seems roughly to correspond with its present situation. The tenants of this manor had to carry 600 cartloads of wood yearly to the priory from Homewoodand Balneath Wood.

After the Dissolution Balneath, with the other possessions of the priory, was granted first to Thomas Cromwell in 1538, and later, in 1541,to Anne of Cleves for her life. The reversion of the manor was granted in 1552 to Sir William Goring, who died in 1554. His son Sir Henry obtained possession of it, and Balneath remained in the Goring family without a break until the end of the 19th century, being purchased from them about 1900 by Sir William Grantham, K.C., from whom it descended to his son William Wilson Grantham, esq., V.D., K.C., J.P.

• Occupation: High Sheriff of Sussex, 1550-1551.

• Will, 6 May 1553.

• Manorial Estate, 1554, Cokeham Manor, Cokeham, Lancing, West Sussex, BN15, GB. 10 In 1262 Cokeham manor was settled by Thomas de Brom on Walter de la Hyde and his wife Joan. Their daughter may have been Hawise, wife of Robert le Veel, who in 1304 sold the manor's reversion to Sir William Paynel and his wife Margaret. It was then held for life by Henry of Guildford. In 1316, when it was held of Sompting Peverel, Sir William Paynel gave it to Hardham priory to provide four secular chaplains. At the dissolution of the priory in 1534 the prior attempted to sell Cokeham to Richard Scrase and others, but the sale presumably never took effect.

Although the manor may have been given to Queen Anne Boleyn in 1534 it was later granted to Sir William Goring, patron of Hardham, who held it at his death in 1553/4. It then descended with Lancing in the Goring family until 1658, when it appears to have passed to Percy, the youngest son of the Sir William who died in that year. He held it in 1668, and died in 1697.

In the early 18th century the manor seems to have been held by trustees but by 1755 it belonged to Francis Winton. By 1795 he had been succeeded by his son Harry, and in 1836 Cokeham belonged to Caroline Winton, presumably Harry's widow. In 1838 the manor and circa 330 acres of land passed to George Wyndham of Petworth, thereafter descending with Coombes until 1920. In 1922 Charles Wyndham, Lord Leconfield, sold it, with c. 700 acres in Sompting, to F. E. Sparkes, whose son E. M. Sparkes held it by 1949.

Cokeham manor-house stood east of Cokeham Lane in 1840. In 1922 it was described as a square building of stuccoed brick. It survived in 1938 but by the 1960s the site had been built over.

• Inquisition: Post Mortem, 19 Apr 1554, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7, GB. 4 480. WILLIAM GORING, knt. Vol. 104, No. 79.
Lewes, 19 April 1 and 2 Philip and Mary. Died 2 March 1 Mary.
Heir, son, Henry Goring, esq., aged 32 and more at Inq.
Lands. - Manor of Burton, advowson of Burton, and Cotts in Burton. Manor of Barlavington, Fyttelworth Mill, lands in Barlavington, Dounkton, Sutton, Petworth, Bygnor, Coots, Fittleworth, and Egdene, settled 9 June 1 Edw. VI. on himself for life, then on Lady Elizabeth his wife for life, then for Henry Goring, esq., his son and heir, and heirs male, remainder to George G., 2nd son, remainder Robt. G., 3rd son, remainder right heirs. Sir W. G. died, then Lady Elizabeth entered and survives. Also seized of manor of Hardam alias Heryngham and advowson of Church of H., manor of Moncks in Northlauncing, Cookeham, Worthing, and Sounting, Rectory and Church of Carsalton alias Karsalton, co. Surrey. Made will as Sir W. G. Burton, knt., 6 May 7 Edw. VI., left Henry his son sole ex'or. Edward VI. also seized of reversion of manors of Balneth and Nytmber, lands called "Knolland," "Frythland," "Oldland," "Losemans," "Pigdene," and "Southlond," after death of Anne of Cleves, and granted to W. G. by Letters Patent. She still living at Hever, co. Kent. W. G. also seized of other property in Shipley, West Grinstead, Warminghurst.

• Probate, 16 Jan 1556.

William married Elizabeth Covert, daughter of John Covert of Slaugham, Sussex and Isabel Pelham, before 1521.1 2 (Elizabeth Covert was born about 1500,11 died after 28 Nov 1558 and was buried in St. Richard's Church, Burton Park, Duncton, Petworth, West Sussex, GU28 0QU, GB.)


1 S.T. Bindoff, editor, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1509-1558 (N.p.: Boydell and Brewer, 1982).

2 P.W. Hasler, editor, The History of Parliament: House of Commons 1558-1603 (GB: Boydell and Brewer, 1981).

3 England, GB, Prerogative Court of Canterbury, PROB 11/20/104 John Goring (~1480-1520); digital images, National Archives, National Archives ( : accessed 13 Jun 2022).

4 Sussex Record Society, Sussex Record Society (N.p.: Sussex Record Society, n.d.), XIV Post Mortem Inquisitions in Sussex - 1 Henry VII (1485) to 1649 and after: 104-105.

5 East Sussex Record Office, Lewes.

6 , 8 (London: Victoria County History, 1953), 6 Part 1: 34-53.

7 Nicholas Harris Nichols Esq., Testementa Vetusta - an Illustration From Wills of Customs... (London, GB: Nichols and Sons, 1826), 2: 561.

8 , 8 (London: Victoria County History, 1953), 4: 4-6.

9 , 8 (London: Victoria County History, 1953), 7: 94-98.

10 , 8 (London: Victoria County History, 1953), 6 Part 1: 53-64.

11 J E E S Sharp and A E Stamp, Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem (London: n.p., n.d.), 3 Henry VII: 425-445.

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