Tower. Gerard had presented his cousin to the king early in 1654 [see under Gerard, John, 1632–1654]. A letter from one F. Coniers to the king, dated London, 11 Jan. 1655, preserved in ‘Thurloe State Papers’ (i. 696), accuses Gerard of having treated with Thurloe for the poisoning of Cromwell. This the writer professes to have discovered by glancing over some papers incautiously exposed in Thurloe's chambers. The story is obviously a mere invention. In July 1655 Gerard was at Cologne, closely watched by Thurloe's spies. As Hyde wrote to Nicholas from Paris, 24 April 1654, Gerard was never without projects (Cal. Clarendon Papers, ii. 341). From Cologne he went to Antwerp ‘to attempt the new modelling of the plot,’ returning to Paris in September. There he appears to have resided until May 1656, busily employed in collecting intelligence. In this work he seems to have been much aided by the postal authorities, who, according to one of Thurloe's correspondents, allowed him to intercept whatever letters he pleased. In July he was at Cologne awaiting instructions. In February 1657 he was at the Hague, corresponding under the name of Thomas Enwood with one Dermot, a merchant at the sign of the Drum, Drury Lane. The only fragment of this correspondence which remains (Thurloe State Papers, vi. 26) is unintelligible, being couched in mercantile phraseology, which gives no clue to its real meaning. Thence he went to Brussels, where in April he received instructions to raise a troop of horse guards at once and a promise of an allowance of four hundred guilders a day for his family. From Brussels he returned to Paris in March 1657–8. He was almost immediately despatched to Amsterdam, apparently for the purpose of chartering ships, and he spent the rest of that year and the first six months of the next partly in the Low Countries and partly at Boulogne, returning to Paris between August and September 1659. There he appears to have spent the autumn and part of the winter, joining Secretary Nicholas at Brussels in the following January. Thence in the spring he went to Breda, and in May 1660 returned with the king to England. He rode at the head of the life guards in the king's progress to Whitehall on the 29th (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1651–2 pp. 3, 240, 1655, p. 341, 1655–6 p. 327, 1656–7 pp. 92, 340, 1657–8 pp. 201, 306, 313, 314, 346, 1659–60 pp. 81, 82, 136, 217, 308; Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. App. 184, 7th Rep. App. 459 b; Cobbett, State Trials, v. 518–519; Thurloe State Papers, i. 696, ii. 57, 512, 579, iii. 659, iv. 81, 100, 194, v. 160, vi. 26).
On 29 July Gerard received a grant in reversion of the office of remembrancer of the tenths and first-fruits. On 13 Sept. his estates, which had been forfeited by the parliament, were restored to him. On 15 May 1661 he petitioned for the post of ranger of Enfield Chase, which he obtained. His title, however, was disputed by the late ranger, the Earl of Salisbury, and he was soon involved in litigation with Captains Thomas and Henry Batt, keepers of Potter's Walk and bailiffs of the Chase, whose patents he refused to recognise. Both matters were referred to the lord chancellor for decision. As against the Batts, Gerard succeeded on the technical ground that their patent was under the great seal, whereas by statute it should have been under that of the duchy of Lancaster. It does not appear how the question with the Earl of Salisbury was settled. In 1662 Gerard was granted a pension charged on the customs. Towards the end of the year he was sent as envoy extraordinary to the French court, where he was very splendidly received. About this time he became a member of the Royal African Company, which obtained in January 1663 a grant by letters patent of the region between Port Sallee and the Cape of Good Hope for the term of one thousand years. Litigation in which he was this year engaged with his kinsman, Alexander Fitton [q. v.], afterwards lord chancellor of Ireland, was watched with much interest by his enemies. The dispute was about the title to the Gawsworth estate in Cheshire, of which Fitton was in possession, but which Gerard claimed. The title depended on the authenticity of a certain deed which Gerard alleged to be a forgery, producing one Granger, who swore that he himself had forged it. Gerard obtained a verdict at the Chester assizes and ejected Fitton. Fitton, however, published a pamphlet in which he charged Gerard with having procured Granger's evidence by intimidation. Gerard moved the House of Lords on the subject, and the pamphlet was suppressed (Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. App. 184, 7th Rep. App. 125 a, 459 b; Lords' Journ. xi. 171 b, 541 a–561 a; Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1651–2–65; Cal. Amer. and West Indies, 1661–8; Thurloe State Papers, i. 696, ii. 57, iii. 659, iv. 81, 100, 194, v. 160, vi. 26, 756, 870, vii. 107, 247; Kennett, Register, 846; Pepys, Diary, 21 Feb. 1667–8; Ormerod, Cheshire, ed. Helsby, iii. 551; North, Examen, 558; B. M. Cat., ‘Gerard, Charles,’ ‘Fitton, Alexander’). In March 1665 Gerard was granted a pension of 1,000l. per annum to retire from the post of captain of the guard, which Charles desired to confer on the Duke of Monmouth. His retirement,