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Edward Oldcorne

Born : 1561 - Yorkshire
Died : 7 April 1606 - Red Hill, Worcester

Edward Oldcorne was a school friend of John and Christopher Wright and Guy Fawkes. Although his father was a Protestant, he was educated in his mothers Catholic faith. A relative, Alice Oldcorne, perhaps his mother, suffered imprisonment in York for her adherance to the Catholic faith. Edward was educated as a doctor, but entered the priesthood at the English College at Rheims, being ordained in Rome in 1587. The following year he became a Jesuit, and returned to England along with John Gerard.

Working chiefly in Worcester, he developed throat cancer, but a pilgrimage to St. Winifred's Well in 1591 cured him. Oldcorne was eventually arrested along with Henry Garnet, Nicholas Owen and Ralph Ashley at Hindlip House, from where he was transported to the Tower. After interrogation, he was returned to Worcester, where he was executed along with Humphrey Littleton, John Wintour and Ralph Ashley.


Ralph Ashley

Born : 1561 - Yorkshire
Died : 7 April 1606 - Red Hill, Worcester

Ralph Ashley worked as a cook at Douay College and entered the English College at Valladolid on 28 April 1590 where he became a Jesuit lay brother. Ill health forced him to leave college and return to England. Along the way he was captured by Dutch heretics; he stood up to them and explained their errors. Finally landed in England on 9 March 1598.

He was a servant and assistant to Edward Oldcorne. Arrested on 23 January 1606 at Hindlip House, near Worcester, England in connection with the Gunpowder Plot, and for the crime of helping a priest. He was transferred to the Tower of London on 3 February 1606 along with Father Garnet and Nicholas Owen where he was tortured for information on other Catholics and for the hiding places of priests. When they could get no information from him, he was transferred to Worcester, where he was executed along with Oldcorne, Humphrey Littleton, and John Wintour.

Edward Oldcorne and Ralph Ashley were beatified on 15 December 1929 by Pope Pius XI.

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