Sir Thomas Hele’s Regiment of Horse

ConflictsFirst Civil War
ColonelSir Thomas Hele
Area RaisedWest Country
Flag Colour
Flag Design
Field ArmiesMaurice 1644

Royalist West Country regiment of horse

Service History


  • June: Capt Gifford recruiting in Hampshire
  • July: Capt Bidlake commissioned
  • Before September: Hele garrisons Tavistock


  • June: Garrison of Exmouth Fort (det under Ameredith)?
  • August: Battle of Lostwithiel?
  • October: Second Battle of Newbury?
  • November: Relief of Donnington


  • July: Stormed at Bridgewater?
  • December: Besieged at Powderham Castle?


  • January: Stormed at Powderham Castle


Possibly the same regiment as Sir John Hele’s Regiment of horse? Served at one of the sieges of Plymouth. Tavistock was taken by Essex in July 1644.

Flags & Equipment

In 1645 Sir Thomas Hele wrote to Edward Seymour requesting a French trumpet.

Notable Officers

Sir Thomas Hele

Officer Lists

From original research by Victor Judge, aka BCW user 1642

  • Colonel Sir Thomas Hele
  • Lieutenant Colonel Henry Clerk (6)
  • Sargeant Major Prestland Molineaux I.O. L + W
  • Sir Ames Ameredith (4) + Ment. I.O. (rank uncertain)
  • Captain John Arundell I.O. Cornwall
  • Captain Henry Bidlake (5)
  • Captain John Brooking I.O. Devon + (2) + (3)
  • Captain Thomas Drake Ment. I.O.
  • Captain John Gifford (7) + ment. I.O.
  • Captain Lewis Hele I.O. Devon
  • Captain Robert Hill I.O. Devon
  • Captain William Newton I.O. Devon
  • Captain Thomas Oliver I.O. Cornwall
  • Captain Matthew Parsons I.O. Cornwall
  • Captain Pollexfen (1)
  • Captain Pomeroy Ment. I.O.
  • Captain Thomas Rich Ment. I.O.
  • Captain Jonas Westwood Ment. I.O.
  • Lieutenant Arthur Ackland I.O. Devon to Capt. Gifford
  • Lieutenant George Browte I.O. L + W to Sgnt. Maj. Molineaux
  • Lieutenant John Jackson I.O. Devon to Capt. Rich
  • Lieutenant Austin Parker I.O. Somerset to Capt. Westwood
  • Lieutenant William Vawser I.O. L + W to Sir Ames [A]meredith
  • Lieutenant John Yeadsley I.O. Devon to Capt. Drake
  • Cornet John Blight I.O. Cornwall
  • Cornet John Byrd I.O. Errata
  • Cornet Arthur Campian I.O. Devon
  • Cornet Thomas Gifford I.O. Devon to Capt. Gifford
  • Cornet Henry Ham I.O. Devon
  • Cornet Edward Newsham I.O. Cornwall to Capt. Pomeroy
  • Cornet Isaac Sheere I.O. Devon
  • Cornet John Somerset I.O. Devon
  • Cornet Thomas Turges I.O. Devon
  • Quartermaster Reynold Burroe I.O. Cornwall
  • Quartermaster George Ching I.O. Devon
  • Quartermaster William Darrant I.O. Devon to Capt. Gifford
  • Quartermaster Peter Lugger I.O. Cornwall to Capt. Pomeroy
  • Quartermaster William Patchcote I.O. Cornwall
  • Quartermaster Thomas Shepheard I.O. Devon
  • Quartermaster John Tregascus I.O. Cornwall to Capt. Oliver
  • Quartermaster Samuel Webber I.O. Devon

Contemporary References

From original research by Victor Judge aka BCW user 1642

Trained Band commission

Harl. Mss. 6851 f.127

20th February 1642(3)

Commission to be Colonel of 1 Regiment of Trained Band formerly under the command of Sir Henry Champernown of Modbury 1000 Tinners.

Lock's petition

DRO.QSP.128.14 n.d 1663 Devon.

To the Right Worshipfull his Majesties Justices of the peace for the County aforesaid assembled at the Castle of Exon. The humble petition of John Lock of the parish of Bratton Clovelly Sheweth

That your petitioner was a souldyer in his late Majesties service of blessed memory, under the Command of Sir Thomas Hele Baaronet untill such tyme as he was maymed, and thereby rendred unable to live without the Charity of weldisposed people; wherefore he implores the Honouravle Bench that he may be allowed some comfortable subsistance by way of Pension as a maymed souldyer, he not at any tyme diserted his Majesties service. And your poor petitioner as duty oblidgeth him shall ever pray, etc.

I doe attest the truth of this petition, and that he was greviously maymed.

Richard Mervine

(1) Capt Pollexfen

DRO.QSP.128.81 To the Right Worshipfull his Majesties Justices of the peace for the Countey of Devon The humble petition of Dennis Tamlyn of Maristowe in the said Counteye

Humbly sheweth that your poore petitioner being a souldier under the command of Capt: Pollexfen in Sir Thomas Heles Regiment did before plymouth in the late warres receive severall woundes in his late Majesties service all which your poore petitioner hath heretofore fully pued (produced ?) in open sessions whereupon a pention of three poundes per anno hath hitherto bin paid and allowed your poore petitioner out of the County storre; Now your poore petitioner being become very weake and aged doth most humbly beseech this Honourable Bench to consider his age weakenesse and poverty and to enlarge his pention And your petitioner shall (as in duty bound) ever pray for your worshipps etc.

We believ the matter of this petition to be true

Nicholas Slanning, Arthur Tremayne

Capt Brooking

(2) DRO.QSP.128.3.10

Petition of Thomas Hamlyn of Ashburton a soldier in the company of John Brooking in the regiment of Sir Thomas Hele

(3) SP19.145.138 John Brooking of Totnes rode with Colonel Hele. SP19.22.107 John Brooking of Totnes did ride with sword and pistolls in Sir Thomas Heles Regiment.

(4) Sir Ames Ameredith

Commander of the Fort at Exmouth



The Dayly Alarmes I have here by reason of the Parliament shipps remaining at the mouth of our Harbor have prevented my waiting on you with this enclosed, made ne despatch the bearer Capt Mosse to you, earnestly entreating you I have given order these (indecipherable) if you cannot possibly spare six, may be sent to Totnes with all possible speede where there will be Cartes and Plowes for the bringing them hither, seeing it is impossible to have them by sea, I shall intreate for a proportionable quantitie of great shott, for I have not any, if noe other gunns & shott but what Capt Wade had, I pray let those be sent.

It is doubted Essex will look this way suddenly, & Warwick I beleeve this Spring, which if before those guns should be heare, I doubt how this place will be kept, which sure is of very great consequence & which I hope will power herein & it will very much oblidge.

Your very faithfull brother and servant

Ames Amerideth

From the Fort this 22 June 1644

My affectionate service

Hele governor of Tavistock

E.70.13 Strange, true, and lamentable newes from Exeter.

After Stratton but before the siege of Dartmouth Sir Thomas Hele was made Governor of Tavistock where he kept a constant garrison. (Before 19.9.43).

French trumpet

DRO.1392 1645.item.11 Letter from Sir Thomas Hele to Edward Seymour requesting a French trumpet.

(5) Bidlake's commission

Devon Record Office 189M-1/F8/4

I Thomas Hele Baronett Colonell of all the Regiments of Horse within the said Countie, doe by virtue of the authoritie which I have receaved from his Majestie, give full power and authoritie unto Henry Bidlake of Bidlake Esq., whome I have chosen Captaine in my Regiment to sease upon all such servicable horses, armes and furniture for them as he shall finde in the hands of any person disaffected to his Majesties service. And I doe likewise by the authoritie which I have received, give full power unto him to call before him those which formerly have found horses & armes for the securitie of this County, & likewise to impose horses and armes on such persons as he shall find of abilitie to serve his Majestie in this time of great distraction & eminent danger. And hereof I shall expect a particular account from Mr Henry Bidlake, faile not of that due performance as you tender his Majesties service the good of this countie & will answer the contrary at your utmost perill.

Given under my hand and Seale this second day of July 1643.

Thomas Hele

(6) Lt Col Henry Clerk

SP29.55.49 Petition of Henry Clerk

Faithfully served his Royal Father of Blessed Memory in the severall capacities of a Captain, Major and afterwards a Lieutenant Colonel of Horse to Sir Thomas Hele.

I believe he was originally under William Ogle in Winchester check. If so and of Horse, probably Colonel Henry Bennet.

(7) Capt Gifford

Harl.Mss. 6802 f.192

A warrant for Captaine John Gifford to receive contribution of the townes of East Woodhay, Ashdeane(Ash and Deane), Overton, Whitchurch, South Sidmonton (prob. Southington), Hawkesbeare ??? Colehenley (Cole Henley) and Joheswell ??? in the Countie. of Hampshire towards the recruiting of his troop. 28.June (1643)

Claypitt's certificate

Devon Record Office 48/26/10/16

These are to certifie that the bearer hereof John Claypitt of the parish of Yealmpton in the County aforesaid, was a souldier under my command and alwaies served in my Regement of Horse before plymouth and at other places in all the tyme of the late unhappie warr, and dureinge all the tyme of his said service, he behaved himselfe valiantly, honestly and stoutely, and in which service hee received severall wounds, by reason of which wounds he is become altogether unable to followe his callinge for to gett alivelyhood for himselfe and poore family, I doe therefore thinke him to bee a fitt object of Charity and so be received in tobe a pensioner amony ye maymed souldiers Souldiers of this County, hee haveing alwaies continued loyall. In testimony whereof I have hereunto put my hand and seale the xxvi th day of December in the xxth yeare of his Majesties Raigne 1663. Tho. Hele

These are to certify that the above said John Claypitt hath received severall wounds in his head, loss of his toes and one of his sights, by which hee is very much disinabled to gett his livelyhood by his crawlinge. Witness my hand this 15th Jan. 1663 Tho: Chudleigh

40s pension 5s in hand.


See Also