Sir William Brereton (or Bryerton), of Alford, was the son of Sir Randle Brereton of Ipstones, Shocklach and Malpas, knight Chamberlain of Chester, and his wife Eleanor Dutton. The family owned lands, and was very powerful, in Cheshire. By 1521, he had become a Groom of the Privy Chamber.* A few years later, in 1529,