Josceline Percy, who lived at Scotsbridge House from 1826 to 1856, was the grandson of Hugh Percy, 1st Duke of Northumberland.
Scotsbridge House, from the grounds
His naval service began at the age of 11 in 1797 on Lord Hugh Seymour’s flagship HMS Sans Pareil. In her book Links with the Past, his daughter, Mrs Charles Bagot, tells that ‘The Sans Pareil had several peers’ sons on board and was ironically called ‘The House of Lords’- the unlucky boys getting an extra rough treatment for what was certainly no fault of their own.’
In 1803 he was appointed to HMS Victory under Lord Nelson. According to his daughter ‘Lord Nelson gave him despatches to take to the Queen of Naples, and private letters to Lady Hamilton, which he was charged only to deliver into her own hands. On his return from Naples Lord Nelson gave him a sword, which is now at Levens, saying to him:”Young man I envy you. At your age and in these times, you ought to have a fine career before you.”
He later served on HMS Medusa as acting Lieutenant, assisting in the capture of Spanish treasure ships and was on HMS Medusa during the capture of Cape Town in 1806. He was promoted to vice-admiral in 1851and served as Commander in Chief, Sheerness and Commander in Chief, The Nore.
He married Sophia Elizabeth Walhouse in 1820. They had 4 children, a son, Alan who died in 1845, and three daughters, of whom the eldest, Sophia, wrote Links with the Past.
As well as his naval career, he was Tory MP for Beer Alston in Devon, a ‘pocket borough’ of his father’s, from 1806 to 1820. It’s hardly surprising that he and his family would have strongly opposed the Reform Act of 1832.
He died in October 1856 and his burial service was conducted at St Thomas’ Church in West Hyde.
Article submitted by Pat Hamilton
You can take a look around Scotsbridge House by clicking this link
Video from the large collection of local videos on the Museums youtube site.