Thomas de Bethom

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Thomas de Bethom, Bailiff of Jersey 1386

This supposed Bailiff is a mystery. The name is only shown by J A Messervy in his largely authoritative list of Bailiffs produced at the turn of the 19th and 20th Centuries. This was not a Jersey family, although there was a prominent English family of the name de Betham at that time, in the North West of England. Some, but by no means all, genealogical studies of the family show a Thomas de Betham born in about 1370 to Sir John de Betham and Margaret Tunstall, and one researcher names this Thomas as Bailiff of Jersey in about 1426.

But why someone from the north of England should be appointed Bailiff, whether late in the 14th or early in the 15th century, when all other Bailiffs were islanders, is a complete mystery.

Messervy states that he was appointed Bailiff on 1 October 1386, by Warden Hugh Calvilegh.

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