Haye, Sir Walter de la
On 6 August 1285 he was appointed escheator of Ireland by the king, and before April the following year was granted custody of Waterford town for its usual fee farm. In 1290 when complaints were made against the treasurer, Nicholas de Clere (qv), charges were also levelled against Haye for his conduct as escheator. He was accused of farming out some of the pleas and perquisites of the king's manorial courts; as a result, it was claimed, the tenants on some of the king's manors were heavily burdened with harsh and unnecessary fines. The bishop of Emly denounced Haye for colluding in Clere's unjust persecution of him. That year Haye went to England with other members of the administration and cleared his name. The king decided that no blame was to accrue to him for any of his actions as escheator. He had, in all matters, attempted to look after the crown's best interests. In June 1290 he was granted permission to treat with any of the Irish that fell within his bailiwick as escheator, and, if necessary, make truces with them. Also in June he was appointed by the king to look into the charges of corruption made against his successor as sheriff of Waterford. Later that year he wrote to Edward I complaining of the arrears he was charged on his accounts and he reminded the king of the labours he had performed in his service – fighting the Irish and defending the lands that came under his jurisdiction. He was told that, while the king appreciated his punctiliousness in sending message after message to the exchequer in England informing the officials there of his activities and requesting allowances in his accounts, such messages cost a great deal to deliver; he was gently advised that many of them were unnecessary.
In December 1293 Haye was appointed one of the commissioners to look into the complaints made against the justiciar, William de Vescy (qv). From 5 March until 4 June 1294 he was custos and acting justiciar of Ireland, presumably by appointment of the king's Irish council, when Vescy was suspended. He presided over the infamous meeting of the council at which John fitz Thomas FitzGerald (qv) made his accusations against Vescy. He was chief justice of the justiciar's bench between Michaelmas 1294 and Christmas 1297. He acted as deputy justiciar from 13 November 1295 until the arrival of John Wogan (qv) on 3 December following; during the few weeks he was in office he undertook a purge of the local administration in Co. Limerick and removed a number of sergeants suspected of peculation. He may have attended the parliament of 1297 as one of the representatives chosen by the community of the liberty of Kilkenny (though his role as escheator and judge raises a doubt as to whether he did so as a knight of the shire). He is last heard of in June 1308 after he wrote to the king pleading to be allowed to retire from royal service due to his failing eyesight, and recommending John Hotham (qv) to replace him as escheator.
He had two sons and a daughter. His eldest son, William, became sheriff of Waterford. His other son, Roger, was presented to the church of Kilmeadan by the king in February 1292 and worked with his father in the escheatry. His daughter's husband was charged with rape and kidnapping, but in spite of this Walter acted as one of the guarantors for his fine.