Camelford (UK Parliament constituency)

Last updated

Camelford
Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
1552–1832
Number of membersTwo
Replaced by East Cornwall

Camelford was a rotten borough in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1552 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Contents

History

The borough consisted of the town of Camelford, a market town in northern Cornwall, and part of the surrounding Lanteglos-by-Camelford parish. Like most of the Cornish boroughs enfranchised or re-enfranchised during the Tudor period, it was a rotten borough from the start.

The right to vote was disputed in the 18th century, but according to a judgment of 1796, belonged to those "free burgesses" who were resident householders paying scot and lot. The number of voters varied as new free burgesses were created, but was estimated to be 31 in 1831. Free burgesses were made only by nomination of the "patron", who owned all the houses in the borough, and the voters always voted in accordance with the patron's instructions.

The patronage, and the borough, changed hands several times. In the 1760s, before the exclusive voting rights of the free burgesses were established, the elections were managed by Charles Phillips for the government, and Camelford was considered a secure Treasury Borough (one where ministers could nominate the MPs as a form of patronage). Later the power of the patron became more complete, and in 1812 The Duke of Bedford was able to sell it for £32,000, forcing its MP, Henry Brougham, to find a new seat as his radical politics were unacceptable to the new owner. From 1814 until the Great Reform Act, the owner was the Earl of Darlington (later Marquess and Duke of Cleveland).

Cleveland was forced to secure his influence by regular payments to the voters, making Camelford one of the most notorious examples of corruption that were cited at the time of the Reform Act. In 1819, after two successive elections had been declared void and all the candidates disqualified for "treating", the writ was suspended, temporarily depriving the borough of its representation, although this only lasted until a new Parliament was summoned the following year. The Morning Chronicle noted in 1830 that "Everyone has heard of what Camelford cost the Marquess of Cleveland till the arrangement with the Marquess of Hertford. The Members who were returned for the marquess paid the voters in £1 notes enclosed in a deal box marked 'China'."

In 1831, the borough had an estimated population of 597, and 110 houses.

Members of Parliament

1553-1640

ParliamentFirst memberSecond member
First Parliament of 1553 John Huyke Nicholas St John
Second Parliament of 1553 Francis Roscarock Ambrose Gilbes
Parliament of 1554 Thomas Arundell George Stafford
Parliament of 1554-1555 Francis Roscarock Clement Tyfferd
Parliament of 1555 William Carryl George Tadlow
Parliament of 1558 Thomas Prideaux William St Aubyn
Parliament of 1559 John Smith Sir Thomas Chamberlain
Parliament of 1563-1567 William Patridge Drue Drury
Parliament of 1571 Nicholas Prideaux Edward Williams
Parliament of 1572-1581 John Gifford George Grenville, junior
Parliament of 1584-1585 Richard Trefusis Emanuel Chamond
Parliament of 1586-1587 Geoffrey Gates
Parliament of 1588-1589 Arthur Gorges
Parliament of 1593 Humphrey Mitchell Richard Leech
Parliament of 1597-1598 Jerome Horsey Henry Carnesewe
Parliament of 1601 William Carnesew Anthony Turpin
Parliament of 1604-1611 John Good
Addled Parliament (1614) George Cotton Robert Naunton
Parliament of 1621-1622 Sir Henry Carey Edward Carr
Happy Parliament (1624-1625) Sir Francis Cottington Edward Hare
Useless Parliament (1625) Sir Henry Hungate Thomas Coteel
Parliament of 1625-1626 Edward Lyndley Sir Thomas Monk
Parliament of 1628-1629 Francis Crossing Evan Edwards
No Parliament summoned 1629-1640

1640-1832

YearFirst memberFirst partySecond memberSecond party
April 1640 Piers Edgcumbe Royalist Edward Reade
November 1640 William Glanville Royalist
January 1644Edgcumbe and Glanville disabled from sitting - both seats vacant
1647 William Say Gregory Clement (?) [1]
May 1652Clement expelled - his seat left vacant
1653Camelford was unrepresented in the Barebones Parliament and the First and Second Parliaments of the Protectorate
January 1659 John Maynard William Bradden
May 1659 William Say One seat vacant
April 1660 Peter Killigrew Samuel Trelawny
June 1660 Thomas Vivian William Cotton
1661 Thomas Coventry Charles Roscarrock
1665 (Sir) William Godolphin
February 1679 Sir James Smyth William Harbord
April 1679 Robert Russell
April 1685 Humphrey Langford Nicholas Courtney
September 1685 Sir Charles Scarborough
1689 Ambrose Manaton Henry Manaton
1695 Robert Molesworth Whig
1696 Sidney Wortley-Montagu
1698 Henry Manaton Dennys Glynn
1704 William Pole
1705 Henry Pinnell
1708 Richard Munden John Manley
1710 Bernard Granville Jasper Radcliffe
March 1711 Henry Manaton
May 1711 Paul Orchard
1712 Sir Bourchier Wrey
1713 James Nicholls
1715 James Montagu Richard Coffin
1722 The Earl of Drogheda William Sloper
1727 Thomas Hales Whig John Pitt
1734 Sir Thomas Lyttelton James Cholmondeley
1741 The Earl of Inchiquin Charles Montagu
1747 The Earl of Londonderry Samuel Martin
1754 John Lade [2]
1759 Bartholomew Burton
1768 Charles Phillips William Wilson
1774 John Amyand Francis Herne
1776 Sir Ralph Payne
1780 John Pardoe James Macpherson
April 1784 Jonathan Phillips
July 1784 Sir Samuel Hannay, Bt
1791 William Smith Whig
March 1796 Lord William Bentinck Whig
May 1796 William Joseph Denison John Angerstein Whig
1802 Robert Adair Whig John Fonblanque [3] Whig
1806 Viscount Maitland Whig
1807 Lord Henry Petty Whig
1810 Henry Brougham Whig
1812 William Leader Samuel Scott
1818 [4] Mark Milbank Whig John Bushby Maitland Whig
1819 [5] John Stewart Tory Lewis Allsopp Tory
1819Camelford's representation suspended 1819-1820
1820 Mark Milbank Whig Earl of Yarmouth Tory
1822 Sheldon Cradock Whig
1832 Constituency abolished

Notes

  1. Sources differ. Cobbett's Parliamentary History lists Clement as MP for Camelford, and the Dictionary of National Biography agrees; however, Brunton & Pennington state that Clement was elected for Fowey, though they list no alternative name for Camelford.
  2. Created a baronet as Sir John Lade, March 1758
  3. John Anthony (later de Grenier) Fonblanque, elected 1802: see ODNB article, NOT his son, John Samuel Martin Fonblanque.
  4. The 1818 election was declared void and a new poll was ordered
  5. The 1819 election was declared void. All the candidates (Stewart, Allsopp, Milbank and Maitland) were barred from sitting for any constituency for the remainder of the Parliament for violating the Treating Act, and Camelford's writ was suspended

Related Research Articles

East Looe was a parliamentary borough represented in the House of Commons of England from 1571 to 1707, in the House of Commons of Great Britain from 1797 to 1800, and finally in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom from 1801 until its abolition in 1832. It elected two Members of Parliament (MP) by the bloc vote system of election. It was disenfranchised in the Reform Act 1832.

Wendover was a borough constituency of the House of Commons of the Parliament of England then of the Parliament of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800 and of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1801 to 1832. It was based on the borough of Wendover, was represented by two Members of Parliament, and was considered a classic example of a pocket borough.

The UK parliamentary constituency of Seaford was a Cinque Port constituency, similar to a parliamentary borough, in Seaford, East Sussex. A rotten borough, prone by size to undue influence by a patron, it was disenfranchised in the Reform Act of 1832. It was notable for having returned three Prime Ministers as its members – Henry Pelham, who represented the town from 1717 to 1722, William Pitt the Elder from 1747 to 1754 and George Canning in 1827 – though only Canning was Prime Minister while representing Seaford.

West Looe, often spelt Westlow or alternative Westlowe, in Cornwall, England, was a rotten borough represented in the House of Commons of England from 1535 to 1707, in the House of Commons of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800, and in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom from 1801 to 1832. It elected two Members of Parliament (MP) by the bloc vote system of election. It was disfranchised in the Reform Act 1832.

Ilchester was a constituency of the House of Commons of the Parliament of England, then of the Parliament of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800 and of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1801 to 1832. It was represented by two Members of Parliament until 1832. It was one of the most notoriously corrupt rotten boroughs.

Bossiney was a parliamentary constituency in Cornwall, one of a number of Cornish rotten boroughs, and returned two Members of Parliament to the British House of Commons from 1552 until 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

The Cornish rotten and pocket boroughs were one of the most striking anomalies of the Unreformed House of Commons in the Parliament of the United Kingdom before the Reform Act of 1832. Immediately before the Act Cornwall had twenty boroughs, each electing two members of parliament, as well as its two knights of the shire, a total of 42 members, far in excess of the number to which its wealth, population or other importance would seem to entitle it. Until 1821 there was yet another borough which sent two men to parliament, giving Cornwall only one fewer member in the House of Commons than the whole of Scotland.

Callington was a rotten borough in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1585 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Reform Act 1832.

Fowey was a rotten borough in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1571 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Saltash, sometimes called Essa, was a "rotten borough" in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1552 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

St Germans was a rotten borough in Cornwall which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons in the English and later British Parliament from 1562 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

St Mawes was a rotten borough in Cornwall, England. It returned two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons of England from 1562 to 1707, to the House of Commons of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800, and to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom until it was abolished by the Great Reform Act in 1832.

Tregony was a rotten borough in Cornwall which was represented in the Model Parliament of 1295, and returned two Members of Parliament to the English and later British Parliament continuously from 1562 to 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Bere Alston or Beeralston was a parliamentary borough in Devon, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1584 until 1832, when the constituency was abolished by the Great Reform Act as a rotten borough.

Brackley was a parliamentary borough in Northamptonshire, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1547 until 1832, when the constituency was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Bramber was a parliamentary borough in Sussex, one of the most notorious of all the rotten boroughs. It elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons in 1295, and again from 1472 until 1832, when the constituency was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Wareham was a parliamentary borough in Dorset, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1302 until 1832, and then one member from 1832 until 1885, when the borough was abolished.

Minehead was a parliamentary borough in Somerset, forming part of the town of Minehead, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1563 until 1832, when the borough was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

Higham Ferrers was a parliamentary borough in Northamptonshire, which was represented in the House of Commons from 1558 until 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act. It was one of the very small number of English boroughs in that period which was entitled to elect only one rather than two Members of Parliament.

Penryn was a parliamentary borough in Cornwall, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons of England from 1553 until 1707, to the House of Commons of Great Britain from 1707 to 1800, and finally to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom from 1801 to until 1832. Elections were held using the bloc vote system.

References

Further reading