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The Tudor Society

30 June – Henry VIII and Catherine Howard’s ill-fated northern progress

Things seemed all peachy as King Henry VIII and his fifth wife, Queen Catherine Howard, set off on their progress to the north of England on this day in Tudor history, 30th June 1541. Little did the king know that he'd be stood up by his nephew and that his world would come crashing down on him on his return.

In today's video, I explain the motives behind this huge undertaking, what happened on the progress, and why Henry's life changed so dramatically when he got back.

Also on this day in history:

  • 1537 – Execution of Thomas Darcy, Baron Darcy of Darcy. He was beheaded on Tower Hill after being found guilty of treason for his part in the Pilgrimage of Grace and Bigod's Revolt.
  • 1559 - Henry II of France suffered a mortal head wound while jousting at the Place Royale at the Hôtel des Tournelles against Gabriel Montgomery, Captain of the King's Scottish Guard. The joust was held to celebrate the Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis. The King died 10th July and was succeeded by Francis II.
  • 1567 – Death of Thomas Becon, clergyman, reformer and theologian. Becon acted as chaplain to Edward Seymour, Lord Protector, and Archbishop Thomas Cranmer, and was appointed by Cranmer as one of the six preachers at Canterbury. Becon was imprisoned in the Tower of London from August 1553 to March 1554, during Mary I's reign, due to his religious beliefs, and on release went into exile in Strasbourg, Frankfurt and Marburg. He returned to England on Elizabeth I's accession. Becon wrote many theological works, which, in time, changed from Lutheran to Zwinglian in their theology. It is thought that he was buried somewhere in Canterbury.
  • 1590 – Death of Sir Roger Townshend, member of Parliament and courtier in Elizabeth I's reign, at Stoke Newington in Middlesex. He was buried at St Giles Cripplegate. Townshend began his career serving the Howard family and was knighted by Charles Howard, Baron Howard of Effingham and the Lord Admiral, at sea for his part in defeating the Spanish Armada in 1588.

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30 June – Henry VIII and Catherine Howard’s ill-fated northern progress