Transcription from ‘Petitions in the State Papers: 1650s’, in Petitions in the State Papers, 1600-1699, ed. Brodie Waddell, British History Online, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/petitions/state-papers/1650s#h2-0006.
The six gunners now acting service for the safety of the Tower of London. SP 18/15 f. 69 (1651)
To the right honourable the Lord Bradshaw pressident of the honourable the councell of state
The humble adresses of the six gunners now acting service for the safety of the Tower of London
Most humbly shewing that they your supplicantes being by order therunto appoynted have done there true and faithfull service, as is by the anexed certificates certified, and have due to them from the 21th of January 1649 to the 20th of January 1650 the some of 209 pounds and 10 shillings as by their debentures signed by the leiuetenant appeareth by the want of which sayd paye, your poore supplicantes are exposed to very great wantes, and they haveing bin payd their former paye by order from the comittee of revenewe their treasury as by their last order heereunto anexed appeereth
Doe humbly crave your honours best furtherance of their distressed cause to that sayd comittee or where else your honour thinkes fitt in their behalfe, that their may bee some speedy order taken, for your supplicantes present supply of that present dew, and for the future humbly crave that your poore supplicantes may bee supplyed monthly or quarterly with their sallery, for the releife of there necessities as may seeme best in theire honours wisedomes and tender concideracion
And they as in all duty bound shall pray etc
Report by Sheila Douglas
In this petition, six men were petitioning Lord Bradshaw for payment of arrears of their pay due from 21 January 1650 to 20 January 1651 which amounted to the sum of £209 10s. They also submitted their certificates duly signed by their Lieutenant to show entitlement to this sum.
The men were still in active service as gunners ‘for the safety of the Tower of London’ but probably previously served in the ‘New Model Army’. The Army was founded in 1645 by the Parliamentarians in the Civil War and disbanded in 1660. The innovation was that it was intended as an army liable for service anywhere in the country including Scotland and Ireland, not as hitherto tied to a single area, or garrison. The soldiers were full-time professionals, differing from the previous system of part-time militia. In order to establish a professional officer corps, the army’s leaders were prohibited from having seats in either the House of Lords or the House of Commons, encouraging separation from the political or religious factions among Parliamentarians. It was raised from a mix of veteran soldiers, those already holding deep Puritan religious beliefs, and conscripts who brought many commonly held beliefs about religion or society, including dissenting or radical views. Although the Army’s higher-ranking officers did not always share these dissenting or radical beliefs their independence from Parliament led to the Army’s willingness to contribute to the overthrow of both the Crown and Parliament’s authority.
The recipient of this petition, Lord John Bradshaw (Bradshawe), was a judge. He was most notable for his role as ‘President of the High Court of Justice’ convened for the trial of King Charles l. He differed from many of the other lawyers of greater prominence, in accepting rather refusing this role. In March 1649 he was appointed President of the Council of State, the body which exercised executive authority following the execution of the King. He stayed in this position until December 1651. It was in this capacity that Lord Bradshaw received the petition.
The six gunners are not named or of a high rank and it has not been possible to clarify if the petition was allowed or identify any payments for a similar amount. Further documents in the State Papers suggest it was supported by one Mr. Burrell and eventually referred to the Committee for the Advance of Money on 21 April 1651.
 Summarised in ‘Volume 24: May 1652’, in Calendar of State Papers Domestic: Interregnum, 1651-2, ed. Mary Anne Everett Green (London, 1877), pp. 231-272, British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/domestic/interregnum/1651-2/pp231-272. For further discussion of this petition, see ‘Volume 24: April 1652’, in Calendar of State Papers Domestic: Interregnum, 1651-2, ed. Mary Anne Everett Green (London, 1877), pp. 203-230, British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/domestic/interregnum/1651-2/pp203-230; and ‘Volume 24: May 1652’, in Calendar of State Papers Domestic: Interregnum, 1651-2, ed. Mary Anne Everett Green (London, 1877), pp. 231-272, British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/domestic/interregnum/1651-2/pp231-272.
 ‘New Model Army’, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Model_Army.
 ‘John Bradshaw (judge)’, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Bradshaw_(judge); Sean Kelsey, ‘Bradshaw, John, Lord Bradshaw (bap. 1602, d. 1659), lawyer, politician, and regicide’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004), https://www.oxforddnb.com/view/10.1093/ref:odnb/9780198614128.001.0001/odnb-9780198614128-e-3201.
 See references in footnote 1.