On the 30th of October 13 56 Wykeham was appointed during pleasure surveyor (supervisor) of the king's works in the castle of Windsor, for the same purposes as at Henley, with power to take workmen everywhere, except in the fee of the church or those employed in the king's works at Westminster, the Tower of Dartford, at the same wages as Robert of Bernham, probably Burnham, Bucks, who had been appointed in 1353, used to have, viz.
John of Gaunt called a council on the 16th of October to impeach Wykeham on articles which alleged misapplication of the revenues, oppressive fines on the leaders of the free companies, taking bribes for the release of the royal French prisoners, especially of the duke of Bourbon, who helped to make him bishop, failing to send relief to Ponthieu and making illegal profits by buying up crown debts cheap. He was condemned on one only, that of halving a fine of 80 paid by Sir John Grey of Rotherfield for licence to alienate lands, and tampering with the rolls of chancery to conceal the transaction.
The first recorded headmaster after the foundation of the college, John Melton, had been presented by Wykeham to the mastership of this hospital in 1393 shortly before his retirement.
On the 10th of February 1360, when another French invasion was feared, the bailiff of Sandwich was ordered to send all the lead he had to Wykeham for the works at Dover.
But as Wykeham was of the party of the Black Prince and his widow Joan of Kent, no dea ex machina was needed.
The baselessness of this is clear when we find that Wykeham had obtained from Innocent VI., on the 27th of January 1357, an indulgence to choose his own confessor (Cal.
On the 27th of September 1391, Wykeham finally resigned the chancellorship. For three years after there are no minutes of the Council.
On the 10th of May 1356 Wykeham first appears in the direct employment of the king, being appointed clerk of the king's works in the manors of Henley and Yeshampsted (Easthampstead) to pay all outgoings and expenses, including wages of masons and carpenters and other workmen, the purchase of stone, timber and other materials, and their carriage, under the view of one controller in Henley and two in Easthampstead.
He got rid of the ministers imposed upon him by the lords appellant, but replaced them by Bishop Wykeham and other old statesmen against whom no objection could be raised.
His education at Winchester, no doubt in the Great Grammar school or High school in Minster Street, was paid for by some patron unnamed by the biographer, perhaps Sir Ralph Sutton, who is named first by Wykeham among his benefactors to be prayed for by his colleges.