Bolron, Robert (DNB00)


BOLRON, ROBERT (fl. 1674–1680), informer, was a native of Newcastle-on-Tyne. He is stated to have been apprenticed to a jeweller at Pye Corner, London, whom, after a twelvemonth, he abandoned to enlist as a foot soldier. On his return to England from the second Dutch war, he happened to visit an acquaintance who was a servant with Sir Thomas Gascoigne, of Barmbow Hall, Yorkshire, and on his recommendation he was appointed manager of the collieries of Sir Thomas. Through his marriage with Mary Baker, formerly a servant in Sir Thomas's household, he also held the lease of the farm of Shippon Hall. According to his own account shortly after his engagement efforts were made, which, through the agency of his wife, herself a pervert, were ultimately successful, to win him over to the Roman catholic faith. Large bribes were then offered to him to engage in the papist plot against the life of the king, but, realising the wickedness of those designs, he resolved to give information to the local magistrates, on whose refusal to act on it, he hastened to London, and made a deposition before the Earl of Shaftesbury. His statements were corroborated by Lawrence Marbury, a former servant of Sir Thomas Gasnoigna. Maybury had, however, been discharged by his master for theft, and Bolron, on account of his having made free with the money received for coals, had been threatened with prosecution by Lady Tempest, daughter of Sir Thomas Gascnigne. The baronet, who had reached his eighty-fifth year, was, in February 1680, put upon his trial; but although the detailed accusations against him made n considerable impression, a verdict was returned in his favour.

[Narrative of Robert Bolron, of Shippon Hall, concerning the horrid Popish Plot; and Conspiracy for the Destruction of his Majesty and the Protestant Religion, 1680; The Papists’ Bloody Oath of Secresy and Litany of Intercession for England, with the manner of taking the oath, upon their entering into any grand conspiracy against the Protestants, as it was taken in the chapel belonging to Barmbow Hall, the residence of Sir Thomas Gascoigne, from William Rushton, a popist priest (1680); An Abstract of the Accusations of Robert Bolron and Lawrence Maybury. servents, against their late Master, Sir Thomas Gascoigne, knt. and bart. of Barmboo, in Yorkshire, for High Treason, with his Trial and Acquittal February 1680 (1680); Attestation of a certain Intercourse had between Robert Bolron and Mr. Thomas Langhorn, wherein is manifested the falsehood and perjury of the said Bolron (1680); State Trials, vii. 962-1043.]

T. F. H.