He was a Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge in 1537. He was Dean of Durham 1551 to 1553, and again 1559 to 1560. During his time as Dean he was responsible for removing ornamentation from Durham Cathedral. He was somewhat isolated.
The death of Dean Whitehead in 1551 had enabled the ultra-Protestant Robert Horne to be appointed to the Deanery, but only one conservative prebendary had died and been replaced during the reign, so Horne had very little support in the Chapter and could achieve only the most superficial conformity, even at the cost of making himself very unpopular. The advent of Mary must have caused huge relief in the close. Horne fled, lamenting the failure of his hopes [...]
In controversy with John Feckenham, he wrote in 1566 on the issues of medieval church and state relations. He was then attacked by Thomas Stapleton, for his reliance on the history of the Papacy to be found in Bartolomeo Platina.