Cholmondeley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's generation of the Cholmondeley family bears a name that was brought to England by the migration wave that was started by the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Cholmondeley family lived in the township of Cholmondley in the parish of Malpas in Cheshire. The name is traditionally pronounced Chumley.

Early Origins of the Cholmondeley family

The surname Cholmondeley was first found in Cheshire at Cholmondeley, a civil parish and village where they were "descended from the Barons of Malpas, and directly from Robert de Cholmondelegh, second son of William Belward, lord of a moiety of the Barony of Malpas, and younger brother of David the ancestor of the Egertons; which Robert was seated at Cholmondeley in the reign of King John." [1]

The regal Cholmondeley Castle is now a country house located there with majestic formal gardens. The house has been a seat of the Cholmondeley family since the 12th century.

The parish of Delemere in Cheshire was home to a distinguished branch of the family. "On its inclosure it gave the title of Baron Delamere, of Vale Royal, to Thomas Cholmondeley, Esq., the proprietor of the ancient possessions of the Cistercian monks of Vale Royal, whose sumptuous abbey, completed in 1330 by Edward III., at a cost of £32,000, was dedicated to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, St. Nicholas, and St. Nichasius, and in the 26th of Henry VIII." [2]

"The manor [of Chorley, Cheshire] was possessed by the Harcourt family in the reign of Edward II., when the two coheiresses of Robert Harcourt married into the Cholmondeley family. Isabel brought a moiety to Hugh Cholmondeley, whose daughter and heiress married Roger Bromley, of Basford; after continuing in the Bromley family for several descents, it was purchased, in 1561, by the Cholmondeleys of Cholmondeley, ancestors of the present Marquess of Cholmondeley. The other moiety passed with Maud to the ancestor of the Cholmondeleys of Chorley, and came to the marquess's family by purchase, in the reign of Henry VI. " [2]

Early History of the Cholmondeley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cholmondeley research. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1460, 1521, 1584, 1659, 1628, 1645, 1552, 1553, 1600, 1657, 1624, 1629, 1640, 1643, 1632, 1689, 1609, 1666, 1641, 1666, 1681, 1662 and 1725 are included under the topic Early Cholmondeley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cholmondeley Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Cholmondeley were recorded, including Chumley, Cholmondeley, Chamandy, Cholemley, Cholmeley, Cholmle, Cholmley and many more.

Early Notables of the Cholmondeley family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Richard Cholmondeley (1460-1521), English farmer and soldier, who served as Lieutenant of the Tower of London; Robert Cholmondeley (1584-1659), created 1st Viscount Cholmondeley in 1628 and became 1st Earl of Leinster (Ireland) and Baron Cholmondeley (England) in 1645, Chief Justice of England in 1552-1553; Sir Hugh Cholmeley (Cholmley) (1600-1657) 1st Baronet, an English landowner, Member of Parliament for Scarborough (1624-1629) and (1640-1643), initially a Parliamentarian but...
Another 73 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cholmondeley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Cholmondeley family to Ireland

Some of the Cholmondeley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 35 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


New Zealand Cholmondeley migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Cholmondeley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Cholmondeley, British settler travelling from London via Plymouth aboard the ship "Tasmania" arriving in Otago, South Island, New Zealand on to Lyttelton on 26th February 1853 [3]
  • Mrs. Cholmondeley, British settler with 7 children travelling from London via Plymouth aboard the ship "Tasmania" arriving in Otago, South Island, New Zealand on to Lyttelton on 26th February 1853 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Cholmondeley (post 1700) +

  • Thomas Cholmondeley (1767-1855), created 1st Baron Delamere in 1821
  • David George Philip Cholmondeley (b. 1960), 7th Marquess of Cholmondeley Lord Great Chamberlain of England, member of the house of Lords
  • Mary Cholmondeley (1859-1925), English novelist
  • Thomas Patrick Gilbert Cholmondeley (1968-2016), Kenyan farmer, great-grandson of the Lord Delamere, heir to the Delamere title at the time of his death
  • Lionel Berners Cholmondeley (1858-1945), younger brother of a British peer who became an Anglican minister
  • Hugh Cholmondeley (1806-1815), British Dean of Chester Cathedral
  • Hugh Cholmondeley (1870-1931), 3rd Baron Delamere, British settler in Kenya
  • Hugh Cholmondeley (1811-1887), 2nd Baron Delamere, British peer and politician
  • William Henry Hugh Cholmondeley (1800-1884), 3rd Marquess of Cholmondeley, was a British peer and Conservative Member of Parliament
  • George Cholmondeley (1703-1770), 3rd Earl of Cholmondeley, British politician, Lord Privy Seal


The Cholmondeley Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Cassis tutissima virtus
Motto Translation: Virtue is the safest helmet.


  1. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html


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