Sunday, 17 June 2012

Sir Robert de Umfraville

Sir Robert de Umfraville KG, c. 1363 - 27 Jan 1436

Governor of Roxborough castle 1399
Knight of the Garter 1399
Vice Admiral of England 1410 – 1436
Lord of Redesdale 1421 – 1436
Lord of Kyme 1421 – 1436

Son of Thomas de Umfraville, lord of Redesdale and grandson of Robert de Umfraville, earl of Angus, Robert is perhaps the most famous of all the Umfravilles and certainly one of the most vigorous.  His brother, Sir Thomas fought at Otterburn. Sykes claims that Robert was appointed Vice-Admiral of England by Richard II (1377 -1399), but Hedley believes he attained this position in 1410 and seems to have kept the title for the rest of his life.

In 1399 Robert was made keeper of Roxburgh castle and created a Knight of the Garter after routing a Scottish raid near Fullhope Law. In 1400, Robert smashed a raiding party of 500 Scots who had come to raid, some 200 of whom were slain outright. Hedley says that on his appointment as Vice Admiral, Robert was given command of 10 ships with which he landed troops and plundered the Firth of Forth for 14 days. Also in 1410 he had sacked Peebles and burned down the market town in the company of his 18 year-old nephew Gilbert. In 1414 he was made receiver of customs at Berwick for life and given Warkworth castle as part of the attainder against the Duke of Northumberland.
Robert fought at the battle of Yeavering on 22 Jul 1415 before sailing to France to join Henry V at the siege of Harfleur. He, of course, took part in the battle of Agincourt - perhaps fighting alongside Gilbert with the vanguard and then right hand battle.

Robert would have inherited Redesdale and Kyme on the death of Gilbert at the battle of Baugé in 1421. Robert was the last of his line to hold Otterburn hall and the last Umfraville Lord of Redesdale. Elsdon Pele tower (which dates from the late 14th century) bears the Umfraville coat of arms and the inscription 'R. Dominus de REDE'. The 'R' probably stands for Robert.

Hedley, W. Percy, Northumberland Families, Vol. I (Newcastle, 1968).
Sykes, J., Northumberland and Durham Local Records, Vol. I (Newcastle, 1833).


  1. That´s one lovely looking unit!!!! Great brushwork!

  2. Stunning unit with soem realy nice heraldy !!!

    Very nice with a historical recap to:)

    Best regards Michael

  3. Nice. The red and yellow livery certainly catches the eye. Good read as usual too.

  4. Very nice, this unit is very colourful! Nice photo, and nice blog too! I'll come back!

    1. Thanks Phil, alway welcome back. I've been away for too long, time to get some more little people painted!

  5. Well done, Stephen, great colorful minis!

    Your blog is on my list from now on!