HUGH DE BALSHAM (d. 1286), English churchman, appears first as sub-prior of the monastery of Ely. On the death of William of Kilkenny in 1256 the monks elected him bishop of Ely, to the annoyance of Henry III. who had handed over the temporalities of the see to John de Waleran. The election was confirmed by the pope in 1257 and Hugh set to work to repair the harm done to the diocese by the intruder. In 1280 the bishop obtained a charter allowing him to replace the secular brethren residing in his hospital of St John at Cambridge by "studious scholars"; a second charter four years later entirely differentiated these scholars from the brethren of the hospital, and for them Hugh de Balsham founded and endowed the college of Peterhouse.
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