Priest and martyr (d.1646)
Bamber (alias READING), EDWARD, VENERABLE, priest and martyr, b. at the Moor, Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire; executed at Lancaster August 7, 1646. Educated at the English College, Valladolid, he was ordained and sent to England. On landing at Dover, he knelt down to thank God, which act, observed by the Governor of the Castle, was the cause of his apprehension and banishment. He returned again, and was soon afterwards apprehended near Standish, Lancashire; he had probably been chaplain at Standish Hall. On his way to Lancaster Castle he was lodged at the Old-Green-Man Inn near Claughton-on-Brock, and thence managed to escape, his keepers being drunk. He was found wandering in the fields by one Mr. Singleton of Broughton Tower (who had been warned in a dream to help him), and was assisted and sheltered by him. Arrested the third time, he was committed to Lancaster Castle, where he remained in close confinement for three years, once escaping, but recaptured. At his trial with two other priests, Whitaker and Woodcock, two apostates witnessed against him that he had administered the sacraments, and he was condemned to die. He suffered with great constancy, reconciling to the Church a felon executed with him, and encouraging his fellow-martyrs to die bravely. His conduct so enraged the persecutors that they urged the executioner to butcher him in a more than usually cruel and savage manner. An ode composed on his death is still extant.