Cuthbert Proctor of Shawdon, England

Cuthbert Proctor of Shawdon (circa 1509 -1543) was born to William Proctor and Isabel Lilburn.  Cuthbert was only about 15 years old when he lost both of his parents, as well as his brothers Robert and Henry.


Roddam township was raided by the Scots in 1533 and the Roddam family moved in with the Proctors of Shawdon.  As a lady of the Proctor family, either Elizabeth or Margaret Roddam married Cuthbert Proctor at Shawdon, Northumberland, England.

Children of Cuthbert and ___ Roddam:

Child Born Married Departed
Roger Proctor  abt. 1630 Barbara Gray
Catherine Proctor  abt. 1630
Geoffrey Proctor  abt. 1637
John Proctor  abt. 1638
Isabella Proctor  abt. 1640

At the beginning of the 16th century the town of Lilburn had two towers, both of which had been destroyed by 1541.  One tower belonged to Cuthbert Proctor. (It has since fallen into decay with only the walls standing).  The other tower belonged to Sir Cuthbert Ogle and had suffered from a fire. The Ogle tower is recorded as being the eastern tower. This suggests that, despite its poorer condition in 1541, the surviving tower is actually Proctor’s Tower and that Ogle’s Tower was at the site now occupied by the early C19 country house called Lilburn Tower.

West Lilburn Tower is a ruined tower house roughly 4 miles to the southeast of Wooler. Only the north wall stands, to a height of 10m. There are a number of windows and openings in the remaining wall, and the springing of the barrel vaulted ceiling can be seen. The walls are over 2m thick in places.   The tower would have been 13m by 10m, and stood three storys high.

It is now a Listed Building Grade II, Scheduled Ancient Monument, Lilburn Tower, NORTHUMBERLAND.  There is absolute certainty that it is located
Eastings: 402180m
Northings: 624140m

Cuthbert Proctor died on May 6, 1543, leaving five children age 4 to 14 and possibly his wife.  His will is recited in the inquisition post mortem, 8th February, 1544.

‘To all Crystyn men gretynge in our Lord God everlastinge. Know your universities that where I the saide Cuthbert Proctor hath made estate of all my lands, etc. in the townes and fields of Glanton and West Lilburn to John Roddam of Lytyll Hoghton the younger, Matthe Rodam of the same, etc., which dede beryth date 1 March 35 Henry VIII., the feoffees immediately after my decease [are] to make an estate to Galfryd Proctor my sonne, etc., and to John Rodam of Lytyle Hogdton. I give £20 to Katherine, my elder daughter, for her marriage portion yf she wyl be guydyd in marygge by the said feoffes,’ etc.

It is unclear why Cuthbert’s eldest son Roger Proctor is not mentioned in the above will.  Instead, his younger brother Geoffrey by about a year is mentioned.


History of Northumberland, Edward Bateson B.A., (London, England: Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Printed and Published By Andrew Reid & Co. Limited, 1895

West Lilburn Tower and Lilburn Tower

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