He came from Horningsheath, Suffolk, and was Groom of the Chamber to Charles I. From 1642 he was Governor of Wallingford Castle, and commanded a foot regiment of 1000 men. He fought against various Roundhead commanders including Lawrence Crawford and Richard Baxter. In 1646 he was the last to surrender a major English stronghold to Oliver Cromwell's forces, following a siege of the castle by Sir Thomas Fairfax. He refused to give in until he had the permission of Charles I. He was a supporter of Charles II, fighting at the battle of Worcester in 1651 and was made Governor of Yarmouth but died 6 months after the Restoration. He is buried in Westminster Abbey. His daughter Margaret Blagge married the politician Sidney Godolphin and she was the subject of a book by John Evelyn entitled The Life of Mrs Godolphin.
- Dewey, J. and Dewey, S. (1996) Wallingford and the Civil War, Pie Powder Press, ISBN 0-948598-09-3
- Griffin, S. (2000) Wallingford in the English civil war, 1642-1646, Bristol : Stuart Press, Invalid ISBN, 28 p.
- Hedges, J.K. (1881) The history of Wallingford, in the county of Berks. London : Wm Clowes, 2 vol.