an e-mail from Frank Brierton. It gives us more
information about the Brereton Holt connection:
I've made a few contributions to your excellent site over the years
and pleased to see some are still up there for the benefit of visitors.
I am now just making another of my periodic visits to the site and
reading through the emails I noticed one from Geoffrey Brereton
Holt. Don't know if you repled direct to him but the following may
be of interest.
I've enclosed some extracts on the final inheritance of Brereton
Hall from the book "The Brereton's of Cheshire 1100-1904"
by Robert Maitland Brereton, Portland, Oregon. I have a complete
photo copy of this book from an original held at the library of
the British Museum.
Bruce, this was written in 1904 and more info has come to light
since then, particularly through the research of the late Patrick
Montague-Smith, a Brereton family descendant and former editor of
Debretts. I corresponded with him back in the 70s. Unfortunately,
he never got around to writing a definitive book on the Brereton
family history, which is a great loss, but his widow wrote to me
and told me she had deposited his Brereton family research papers
with the Society of Genealogists in London. I looked through these
papers on a visit to London about 7 years ago but could only spend
a day at the SOG offices which was not enough time to go through
the half dozen boxes of papers available.
Anyway, hope the following info from the 1904 book concerning the
Holte family link and the end of the Brereton connection with the
Hall and estate will be of interest to Geoffrey Brereton Holt and
other visitors to your site.
If you would like any other extracts on various aspects of the family
history from this book please let me know - but please note it is
200 pages long and I am a one-finger typist!
I'm certainly interested in a Brereton reunion if you ever organise
another one anytime.
The Brereton's of Cheshire 1100-1904"
By Robert Maitland Brereton
Edited extracts only - ref pages 74-77
"Francis, Baron Brereton V, 18th Lord Brereton of Brereton
died in 1722 unmarried. Here ended the Lords of Brereton, Cheshire."
"At the decease of Francis, 5th Baron, Brereton Hall and estates
passed to the family of Holte through the marriage of Jane Brereton,
daughter of Sir John Brereton, and grand daughter of Sir William
Brereton XI of Brereton with Sir Robert Holte in 1646. Thence through
the Holte family it passed by marriage into the Bracebridge family
of Atherstone, Warwickshire in 1775 and was afterwards sold by an
act of parliament to satisfy the creditors of Abraham Bracebridge.
Brereton Hall now belongs to a Stockport merchant family of the
name of Howard." (Written in 1904)
"It is plainly evident from the foregoing that on the death
of Francis, the title of Baron of Leighlin with the Brereton estates
should have descended to his cousin, Thomas Brereton of Helmingham,
only son of his uncle Thomas, the fourth son of the second* Lord
Brereton, and therefore heir."
"On the death of Lord Francis it is said that Lady Elizabeth
Brereton, the last surviving daughter of the second* Lord Brereton,
occupied Brereton Hall and held it against her fifth brother, John
Brereton, Rector of Beverley, who claimed the property as son of
the second* Lord."
"The Rev. John Brereton, whose omission by Ormerod from the
family pedigree is said to have been due to the Holte influence,
was brought up as a son of Captain John Brereton, his uncle."
"When he advanced his claims he is said to have been confronted
by Lady Elizabeth with the afadavit he had himself made as to his
parentage. He was a decided Puritan and hence an object of abhorrence
to Lady Elizabeth, who, like her mother, favoured the Roman Catholic
religion, and who is said to have left all her property to the Holtes,
who were all known Roman Catholics, and to have destroyed all documents
at Brereton which could possibly lead to a Brereton succession."
"As the Rev. John Brereton failed to establish his claim and
Thomas Brereton of Helmingham, for some reason as yet unexplained,
did not seem aware of his right of succession, or at least made
no claim, the peerage was allowed to fall into abeyance and the
Brereton estates passed to the Holtes of Aston, in Warwickshire,
in right of Jane (Brereton), wife of Sir Robert (John?) Holte and
second daughter of Sir John Brereton, Baronet, and therefore great
aunt of Lord Francis."
"Thomas Brereton of Helmingham died at Helmingham Hall in 1733
and is buried in the Dysart family vault"
* RMB extracts refer to the Second Lord Brereton, but I think he
means the title 2nd Baron of Leighlin?