Thomas Townshend (MP)

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The Honourable Thomas Townshend (2 June 1701 – 21 May 1780), of Frognal House, Kent, was a British Whig politician who sat in the House of Commons for 52 years from 1722 to 1774.

The prefix The Honourable or The Honorable is an honorific style that is used before the names of certain classes of people.

Frognal House Mansion in London

Frognal House is a Jacobean mansion in London, England, standing on the border of Sidcup in the London Borough of Bexley, and Chislehurst, in the London Borough of Bromley. It was built in the early 16th century.

United Kingdom Country in Europe

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea separates Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

Townshend was the second son of Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend, and his first wife the Hon. Elizabeth Pelham. [1] He was educated at Eton in 1718, and was admitted at King's College, Cambridge and Lincolns Inn in 1720. [2]

Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend British Whig statesman

Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend, was an English Whig statesman. He served for a decade as Secretary of State for the Northern Department, 1714–1717, 1721–1730. He directed British foreign policy in close collaboration with his brother-in-law, prime minister Robert Walpole. He was often known as Turnip Townshend because of his strong interest in farming turnips and his role in the British Agricultural Revolution.

Eton College Independent boarding school in Windsor and Maidenhead, UK

Eton College is a 13–18 independent boarding school and sixth form for boys in the parish of Eton, near Windsor in Berkshire, England. It was founded in 1440 by King Henry VI as Kynge's College of Our Ladye of Eton besyde Windesore , as a sister institution to King's College, Cambridge, making it the 18th-oldest Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference school. Eton's history and influence have made Eton one of the most prestigious schools in the world.

Kings College, Cambridge college of the University of Cambridge

King's College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, England. Formally The King's College of Our Lady and Saint Nicholas in Cambridge, the college lies beside the River Cam and faces out onto King's Parade in the centre of the city.

Townshend was returned as Whig Member of Parliament for Winchelsea at the 1722 British general election and was appointed under-secretary of state to his father in 1724. At the 1727 British general election, he was returned for both Hastings and Cambridge University and chose to represent Cambridge. He was appointed Teller of the Exchequer in 1727 and held the post for the rest of his life. In 1730 his father went out of office and Townshend lost his position as under-secretary. He was returned unopposed for Cambridge University at the 1734 British general election and was appointed secretary to the Duke of Devonshire, the lord lieutenant of Ireland in 1739. He was returned unopposed in 1741 and 1747. [3]

Winchelsea was a parliamentary constituency in Sussex, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1366 until 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

1722 British general election

The 1722 British general election elected members to serve in the House of Commons of the 6th Parliament of Great Britain. This was the fifth such election since the merger of the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland in 1707. Thanks to the Septennial Act of 1715, which swept away the maximum three-year life of a parliament created by the Meeting of Parliament Act 1694, it followed some seven years after the previous election, that of 1715.

1727 British general election

The 1727 British general election returned members to serve in the House of Commons of the 7th Parliament of Great Britain to be summoned, after the merger of the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland in 1707. The election was triggered by the death of King George I; at the time, it was the convention to hold new elections following the succession of a new monarch. The Tories, led in the House of Commons by William Wyndham, and under the direction of Bolingbroke, who had returned to the country in 1723 after being pardoned for his role in the Jacobite rising of 1715, lost further ground to the Whigs, rendering them ineffectual and largely irrelevant to practical politics. A group known as the Patriot Whigs, led by William Pulteney, who were disenchanted with Walpole's government and believed he was betraying Whig principles, had been formed prior to the election. Bolingbroke and Pulteney had not expected the next election to occur until 1729, and were consequently caught unprepared and failed to make any gains against the government party.

Townshend was returned as MP for Cambridge University in 1754, 1761 and 1768. He was a regular attender in Parliament and made occasional speeches. [4]

1754 British general election

The 1754 British general election returned members to serve in the House of Commons of the 11th Parliament of Great Britain to be summoned, after the merger of the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland in 1707. Owing to the extensive use of corruption and the Duke of Newcastle's personal influence in the pocket boroughs, the government was returned to office with a working majority.

1761 British general election

The 1761 British general election returned members to serve in the House of Commons of the 12th Parliament of Great Britain to be summoned, after the merger of the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland in 1707. This was the first Parliament chosen after the accession to the throne of King George III. It was also the first election after George III had lifted the conventional proscription on the employment of Tories in government. The King prevented the Prime Minister, the Duke of Newcastle, from using public money to fund the election of Whig candidates, but Newcastle instead simply used his private fortune to ensure that his ministry gained a comfortable majority.

1768 British general election

The 1768 British general election returned members to serve in the House of Commons of the 13th Parliament of Great Britain to be held, after the merger of the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland in 1707.

Frognal House in the 1800s IrelandsFrognal.jpg
Frognal House in the 1800s

Townshend married Albinia Selwyn, daughter of John Selwyn, in 1730. [3] Albinia died in 1739. In 1752 Townshend bought Frognal House, near Sidcup in Kent. He survived his wife by over 40 years and died in May 1780, aged 78. Their son Thomas became a prominent politician and was created Viscount Sydney in 1789. Townshend had brothers Charles, William and Roger, and nephews George, Charles and Charles Townshend, 1st Baron Bayning.

Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney British Viscount

Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney, PC was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1754 to 1783 when he was raised to the peerage as Baron Sydney. He held several important Cabinet posts in the second half of the 18th century. The cities of Sydney in Nova Scotia, Canada, and Sydney in New South Wales, Australia were named in his honour, in 1785 and 1788, respectively.

Earl Sydney

Earl Sydney, of Scadbury in the County of Kent, was a title in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1874 for John Townshend, 3rd Viscount Sydney.

Charles Townshend, 3rd Viscount Townshend, known as The Lord Lynn from 1723 to 1738, was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1722 to 1723 when he was elevated to the House of Lords by writ of acceleration.

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References

  1. Lee, Sidney, ed. (1899). "Townshend, Charles (1674-1738)"  . Dictionary of National Biography . 57. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  2. "Townshend, Thomas (TWNT720T)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  3. 1 2 "TOWNSHEND, Hon. Thomas (1701-80), of Frognal, Kent". History of Parliament Online (1715-1754). Retrieved 22 February 2019.
  4. "TOWNSHEND, Hon. Thomas (1701-80), of Frognal, Kent". History of Parliament Online (1754-1790). Retrieved 22 February 2019.
Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Robert Bristow
George Bubb
Member of Parliament for Winchelsea
17221727
With: Robert Bristow
Succeeded by
Robert Bristow
John Scrope
Preceded by
Archibald Hutcheson
Sir William Ashburnham
Member of Parliament for Hastings
1727–1728
With: Sir William Ashburnham
Succeeded by
Thomas Pelham
Sir William Ashburnham
Preceded by
Dixie Windsor
Thomas Willoughby
Member of Parliament for Cambridge University
17271774
With: Edward Finch 1727–1768
Charles Yorke 1768–1770
William de Grey 1770–1771
Richard Croftes 1771–1774
Succeeded by
Richard Croftes
Marquess of Granby
Political offices
Preceded by
George Treby
Teller of the Exchequer
1727–1766
Succeeded by
John Jeffreys Pratt
Preceded by
Sir Edward Walpole
Chief Secretary for Ireland
1739
Succeeded by
Hon. Henry Bilson-Legge