The Blessed Thomas Plumtree was a man of learning and of holy life who had been ordained priest in the reign of Queen Mary. On occasion of the famous Rising in the North, under the conduct of the Earls of Northumberland and Westmoreland, Plumtree attached himself to the insurgents, became their chaplain and preacher, and publicly celebrated Mass for them in the church of Durham College. It was on this charge that he was tried and condemned to death; but as his life was offered him on the scaffold if he would renounce the Catholic Faith and adopt the new religion, it was in truth for this holy cause that he died. When urged to comply, he firmly refused any such compromise, and declared that he had no wish to live in this world, if he were to die to God. He was executed in the Market Place at Durham, and buried in the Church of Saint Nicholas. There is some uncertainty as to the Christian name of this Martyr, as he is sometimes called Thomas and sometimes William; nor is it clear whether or not he is the same with Plumtree, a schoolmaster of Lincolnshire, who suffered for the Faith. With the sanction of Pope Gregory XII, the Blessed Thomas was represented on the walls of the ancient church of the English College in Rome; and with the approbation of Leo XIII, the Sacred Congregation of Rites, by a Decree published 29th of December, 1886, declared him entitled to the honours of the Blessed.
- Father Richard Stanton. “Blessed Thomas Plumtree, Martyr, c.1569-1570”. , 1887. CatholicSaints.Info. 15 April 2015. Web. 30 March 2017. <>