Sir Percival Willoughby
Sir Percival Willoughby was a member of the Kentish Willoughby d’Eresby family. He married his distant cousin Bridget, daughter of Sir Francis Willoughby of Wollaton, Nottinghamshire, and thus inherited Sir Francis’s Nottingham estates. Willoughby was a major investor in the London and Bristol Company and was granted all the land on Newfoundland’s Bay de Verde Peninsula north of a line draw from Carbonear in Conception Bay to Heart’s Content in Trinity Bay. Over the more than twenty years that he was involved in the Newfoundland plantation, he employed a number of agents including Henry Crout, Thomas Rowley and Nicholas Guy and several attempts were made to settle his Newfoundland property at Carbonear and New Perlican. The letters written to him by his agents in Newfoundland are one of our most important sources of information on early English settlement on the Island.