The Twickenham Museum
People : Royals, Peers and Courtiers

Sir Simon Harvey
c1585 - 1628

Sir Simon Harvey owned properties and land in Whitton which included a 22 acre coney (rabbit) warren. Apparently he had created it.

Harvey was appointed Clerk of the Green Cloth in 1625 by Charles I. Prior to this he had been Royal Grocer and, as an ex tradesman, was relatively unpopular. He died in office on 1 Dec 1628. The Clerk of the Green Cloth was a position in the British Royal Household. The Clerk acted as Secretary of the Board of Green Cloth, and therefore was responsible for organising royal journeys and assisting in the administration of the household. His elder brother, Sir John Harvey (c1582-1650) was Governor of Virginia 1630-35 and 1637-39.

Daniel Lysons noted the followin burials All Saints Church, Isleworth: "Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Simon Harvie, Knt. buried May 6, 1626; Simon Harvie, Knt. buried Dec. 4, 1628; Simon, son of Lady Harvie, buried April 6, 1632."

Detail from Glover's map showing Whitton village in 1635. Note: North is towards bottom right-hand corner

In 1632 Simon's widow Ursula sold two cottages and land to Edmund Cooke. The Harveys may have lived in another house, which they sold to Martin Boothby in 1621. This was the Blew House (later Blue House) probably where what has become known as Whitton Manor stood - if not that same house, or parts of it. It can be seen on Moses Glover's map of 1635.

Ursula was his second wife and she bore him at least six children, the last when she was 41. This was Susanna (1627-1709) who married Richard Hopton. In his will, Simon's brother Sir John left “To his nephew Symon Harvey, eldest son of his late brother Sir Simon Harvey, knight of London, 500 pounds; and 200 pounds to each of the two daughters of the said Sir Simon”.

Detail showing the warren established by Sir Simon Harvey

Glover's map shows that Harvey had started a 22 acre rabbit warren on land to the north of the Crane River at the west end of the parish, opposite Fulwell Lodge ("A Warrin planted by Sr Simond Harvey Kt"). Perhaps, as the Royal Grocer, he supplied rabbits to the Household. This warren came to be known as Whitton Warren. The map also shows their earlier house, now occupied by Martin Boothby.

The warren land had, earlier, been in the possession of the York family of Twickenham. It later was owned by Lord John Belasyse*, then Sir John Webb, who sold it to Thomas Vernon whose family in turn sold it to John Chunn whose family were warreners in the parish and sometime occupiers of Fulwell Lodge where there was another warren.

further reading

W A Rosewarne, Whitton, a brief History, unpublished typescript deposited in the Local Studies Library, Richmond-upon-Thames
A C B Urwin, The Rabbit Warrens of Twickenham, Borough of Twickenham Local History Society Paoer No58, 1986
*as noted in an indenture dated 23 April 1680 held in Richmond Local Studies Library, document no2621
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, for Susanna Hopton.

back to top