Heathcote-Drummond-Willoughby family, Earls of Ancaster
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Sir Gilbert Heathcote, 1st baronet (1652-1733), was Governor of the Bank of England 1708 and Lord Mayor of London 1710. He acquired estates in Rutland and Lincolnshire from c.1716 and his son built a house at Normanton (Rutland), demolished in 1925. Sir Gilbert John Heathcote, 5th baronet (1795-1867), created Baron Aveland in 1856, married in 1827 Clementina Drummond, sister and eventual heir of her brother, the 22nd Baron Willoughby de Eresby (d. 1870). Their son succeeded his father as 2nd Baron Aveland and (in 1888) his mother as 24th Baron Willoughby de Eresby, and was created Earl of Ancaster in 1892.
Sir William de Willoughby (d. 1306) of Willoughby (Lincolnshire) married Alice Beke, co-heiress of Eresby (Lincolnshire). Their son was summoned to Parliament as Lord Willoughby de Eresby in 1313. Other properties were inherited in the 14th and early 15th centuries in the Parts of Holland (Lincolnshire) (from the Huntingfield family); Norfolk (from the Rosceline family) and Suffolk (from the Ufford Earls of Suffolk). Joan Willoughby, daughter and heiress of the 6th Baron, married Sir Richard Welles, but he and his son were beheaded in 1469-70. William Willoughby succeeded a cousin as 10th Baron Willoughby de Eresby in 1506, and married in 1516 Mary de Salinas, who as her dower received the reversion of Grimsthorpe (Lincolnshire) and other properties of John, Lord Beaumont. Their daughter Katherine married in 1535 Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk (she held his estates in dower between his death in 1545 and 1551), and secondly, in 1553, Richard Bertie. Her son Peregrine Bertie succeded her as 12th Baron Willoughby de Eresby in 1580, and the 13th Baron was created Earl of Lindsey in 1626.
The 4th Earl of Lindsey married in 1678 Mary, daughter and heir of Sir Richard Wynn of Gwydir, through whom the family acquired estates in Caernarvonshire, and was created Duke of Ancaster in 1715. On the death of the 4th Duke in 1779 the dukedom and the Grimsthorpe estate passed to his uncle, who died without male issue in 1809. At that point the dukedom became extinct and the Grimsthorpe estate passed to his niece Priscilla, Baroness Willoughby de Eresby, who had succeeded to the other Willoughby estates in 1779. Priscilla married Sir Peter Burrell, 2nd bt., of Beckenham (Kent), who in 1796 was created Baron Gwydir. Their son succeeded his father as 2nd Baron Gwydir in 1820 and his mother as 21st Baron Willoughby de Eresby in 1828. Through his marriage in 1807 to Clementina (d. 1865), daughter and heiress of the 1st Lord Perth, the family succeeded to extensive estates in Scotland centred on Drummond Castle (Perthshire).
On the death of the 5th Duke of Ancaster in 1809 some Lincolnshire property descended to the Greathead, later Heber-Percy, family of Guy's Cliffe (Warwickshire).
On the death of the 22nd Baron Willoughby de Eresby in 1870 the Willoughby, Wynn and Drummond estates all passed to the Dowager Lady Aveland as Baroness Willoughby de Eresby.
Estates in 1883: Aveland: 17,637 acres in Lincolnshire; 13,633 acres in Rutland; 3 acres in Derbyshire; 2 acres in Huntingdonshire; worth a total of £46,894 a year. Willoughby de Eresby: 24,696 acres in Lincolnshire; 30,391 acres in Caernarvonshire; 296 acres in Denbighshire; 76,837 acres in Perthshire; worth a total of £74,006 a year.
|Sources of authority:||Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, Principal family and estate collections, 1996, p. 78.|
|Name authority reference:||GB/NNAF/F88665 (Former ISAAR ref: GB/NNAF/F10833 )|