|Former County constituency |
for the House of Commons
|Number of members||Two until 1826, then Four|
|Replaced by||Yorkshire East Riding, Yorkshire North Riding and Yorkshire West Riding|
Yorkshire was a constituency of the House of Commons of the Parliament of England from 1290, 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, traditionally known as Knights of the Shire, until 1826, when the county benefited from the disfranchisement of Grampound by taking an additional two members.
The constituency was split into its three historic ridings, for Parliamentary purposes, under the Reform Act 1832. Each riding returned two MPs. The county was then represented by the Yorkshire East Riding, Yorkshire North Riding and Yorkshire West Riding constituencies.
Yorkshire is the largest of the historic counties of England. The constituency comprised the whole county. Yorkshire contained several boroughs which each independently returned two members to Parliament. These were Aldborough, Beverley, Boroughbridge, Hedon, Kingston upon Hull, Knaresborough, Malton, Northallerton, Pontefract, Richmond, Ripon, Scarborough, Thirsk and York.
|Parliament||First member||Second member|
|1309||Robert de Boynton|
|1320||Sir Thomas Ughtred|
|1324||Sir John Tempest of Bracewell|
|1339||Sir Robert Hilton of Swine & Winestead|
|1341||John de Siggeston||William Bruys|
|1364||Richard le Scrope, 1st Baron Scrope of Bolton|
|1376||Sir John Savile of Shelley and Golcar||Sir Robert de Boynton|
|1378||Sir John Hotham|
|1380||Ralph Hastings of Kirby and Burton Hastings|
|1382||John St Quentin of Harpham|
|1382||Sir John Savile of Shelley and Golcar|
|1383||Sir James Pickering|
|1384||Sir John Savile of Shelley and Golcar||Sir James Pickering|
|1385||Sir William Melton of Aston and Kyllon|
|1386||Sir John Godard||Sir John St Quentin of Harpham|
|1388 (Feb)||Sir William Melton of Aston and Kyllon||Sir Robert Constable|
|1388 (Sep)||Sir James Pickering||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1390 (Jan)||Sir John Savile of Shelley and Golcar||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1390 (Nov)||Sir William Ellis||Sir James Pickering|
|1391||Sir John Godard||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1393||Sir Ralph Euer||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1394||Sir John Routh of Routh||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1395||Sir Peter Buckton||Sir John St Quentin|
|1397 (Jan)||Sir Peter Buckton||Sir Ralph Euer|
|1397 (Sep)||Sir James Pickering||Sir David Roucliffe|
|1399||Sir Ralph Euer||Sir Robert Neville of Hornby|
|1401||Sir John Scrope of Hollinhall & Haldenby||Sir Gerard Usflete|
|1402||Thomas Colville||Sir Robert Rockley|
|1404 (Jan)||Sir John Routh of Routh||Sir Richard Tempest of Bracewell|
|1404 (Oct)||Sir Peter Buckton||Sir William Dronsfield|
|1406||Sir Richard Redman||Sir Thomas Rokeby|
|1407||Sir Edmund Hastings||Sir Alexander Lound|
|1411||Sir John Etton||Sir Robert Plumpton|
|1413 (May)||Sir Edmund Hastings||Sir Alexander Lound|
|1414 (Apr)||Sir Alexander Lound|
|1414 (Nov)||Sir Richard Redman||Sir John Etton|
|1415||Sir Richard Redman||Sir John Etton|
|1416 (Mar)||Sir Brian Stapleton||Sir Robert Plumpton 1|
|1419||Sir Robert Hilton||Sir Halnath Mauleverer|
|1420||Sir Richard Redman||Sir John Langton|
|1421 (May)||Sir Edmund Hastings||Sir William Gascoigne|
|1421 (Dec)||Sir Richard Redman||Sir John Etton|
|1422 (Nov)||Sir William Euer|
|1423||Sir Thomas Rokeby|
|1425||Sir Robert Hilton||Sir William Ryther de Ryther|
|1426||Sir Robert Hilton|
|1427||Sir Robert Hilton|
|1431 (Jan)||Sir William Euer|
|1439||Sir Thomas Savile|
|1449||Sir James Strangways||William Eure|
|1450||Sir John Savile|
|1461||Sir James Strangways|
|1467||Sir John Savile|
|1491||Thomas Scrope, 6th Baron Scrope of Masham|
|1491||Sir Richard Tunstall||Sir Henry Wentworth|
|1523||Sir William Bulmer||?|
|1529|| Sir John Neville, ennobled and|
repl. Feb 1533 by Sir John Neville II
|Sir Marmaduke Constable|
|1539||Sir Henry Savile||Robert Bowes|
|1542||Sir Ralph Ellerker||Sir Robert Bowes, disqualified and |
repl. Feb 1543 by Thomas Waterman
|1547||Sir Nicholas Fairfax||Sir William Babthorpe|
|1553 (Mar)||Sir Thomas Gargrave||Sir Robert Constable|
|1553 (Oct)||Sir Robert Constable||Sir William Vavasour|
|1554 (Apr)||Sir William Babthorpe||Sir Christopher Danby|
|1554 (Nov)||Sir Thomas Wharton II||Sir Thomas Gargrave|
|1555||?Sir Robert Constable||Sir Thomas Gargrave|
|1558||?Thomas Wharton, 2nd Baron Wharton||Sir Richard Cholmley|
|1559||Sir Thomas Gargrave||Sir Henry Savile|
|1562||Sir Thomas Gargrave||Sir Nicholas Fairfax|
|1571||Sir Thomas Gargrave||Sir Henry Gates|
|1572||Sir Thomas Gargrave|| Thomas Waterton died and |
repl. Jan 1576 by Sir Robert Stapleton
|1584||Ralph Eure||Sir William Mallory|
|1586||Sir Henry Gates||Sir Thomas Fairfax of Denton|
|1588||Sir Henry Constable||Sir Ralph Bourchier|
|1593||Sir George Savile, Bt||John Aske|
|1597||Sir John Savile||Sir William Fairfax|
|1601||Thomas Fairfax||Sir Edward Stanhope|
|1604||Sir Francis Clifford||Sir John Savile|
|1606||Sir Richard Gargrave|
|1614||Sir John Savile||Sir Thomas Wentworth|
|1621||Sir Thomas Wentworth||Lord George Calvert|
|1624||Sir Thomas Savile||Sir John Savile|
|1625||Sir Thomas Wentworth||Thomas Fairfax|
|1626||Sir John Savile||Sir William Constable, Bt|
|1628||Henry Belasyse||Sir Thomas Wentworth|
|1629||Sir Henry Savile, Bt|
|1629–1640||No Parliaments summoned|
(Although writs were issued to fill both these vacancies, no elections seem to have been held and the seats remained vacant to the end of the Parliament)
Barebones Parliament (Nominated members)
First Protectorate Parliament (Fourteen members elected for the three Ridings)
Second Protectorate Parliament (Fourteen members elected for the three Ridings)
Third Protectorate Parliament
Long Parliament (restored)Both seats vacant
|Year||First member||First party||Second member||Second party|
|1660||Thomas Fairfax||Sir John Dawnay|
|1661||Conyers Darcy||Sir John Goodricke, Bt|
|1670||Sir Thomas Slingsby, Bt|
|1679||Charles Boyle||Henry Fairfax|
|1685||Sir John Kaye, Bt|
|January 1701||Sir John Kaye, Bt|
|December 1701||Arthur Ingram|
|1702||Marquess of Hartington||Sir John Kaye, Bt|
|January 1707||Thomas Fairfax|
|December 1707||Henry Dawnay||Conyers Darcy|
|1708||Sir William Strickland, Bt|
|1710||Sir Arthur Kaye, Bt|
|February 1727||Cholmley Turner|
|August 1727||Sir Thomas Watson-Wentworth|
|1728 by-election||Sir George Savile, Bt|
|1734||Sir Miles Stapylton, Bt|
|1742 by-election||Cholmley Turner|
|1747||Sir Conyers Darcy|
|1750 by-election||Henry Dawnay|
|1759 by-election||Sir George Savile, Bt||Whig|
|January 1784 by-election||Francis Ferrand Foljambe||Whig|
|April 1784||William Wilberforce||Independent|
|1796||Hon. Henry Lascelles||Tory|
|1812||Hon. Henry Lascelles||Tory|
|1826||representation increased to 4 members|
|Election||First member||Party||Second member||Party||Third member||Party||Fourth Member||Party|
|Representation increased to 4 members|
|1826||Charles Wentworth-FitzWilliam||Whig||William Duncombe||Tory||Richard Fountayne Wilson||Tory||John Marshall||Whig|
|1830||George Howard||Whig||Ultra-Tory||Richard Bethell||Tory||Henry Brougham||Whig|
|Dec 1830 by-election||Sir John Vanden-Bempde-Johnstone, Bt||Whig|
|1831||George Strickland||Whig||John Charles Ramsden||Whig|
|1832||Constituency abolished: see North Yorkshire, East Yorkshire and West Yorkshire|
The county franchise, from 1430, was held by the owners of freehold land valued at 40 shillings or more. Each voter had as many votes as there were seats to be filled. Votes had to be cast by a spoken declaration, in public, at the hustings, which took place in the county town of York. The expense and difficulty of voting at only one location in the (very large) county, together with the lack of a secret ballot contributed to the corruption and intimidation of voters, which was widespread in the unreformed British political system.
The expense, to candidates, of contested elections encouraged the leading families of the county to agree on the candidates to be returned unopposed whenever possible. Contested county elections were therefore unusual.
Only two elections in the 18th century were contested.
|Whig||Edward Wortley Montagu||5,898||N/A|
At the 1784 general election, the seat was initially contested, but the two Whig candidates Francis Ferrand Foljambe and William Weddell conceded without calling for a poll.
At the 1802 general election, William Wilberforce and Henry Lascelles were elected unopposed.
At the 1806 general election, William Wilberforce and Walter Ramsden Fawkes were elected unopposed.
|Yorkshire election 1807|
At the 1812 general election, Viscount Milton and Henry Lascelles were elected unopposed.
At the 1818 and 1820 general elections, Viscount Milton and James Stuart Wortley were elected unopposed.
At the 1826 general election, Richard Fountayne Wilson, John Marshall, William Duncombe and Viscount Milton were elected unopposed.
At the 1831 general election, George Strickland, John Charles Ramsden, John Vanden-Bempde-Johnstone and George Howard were elected unopposed.
Henry Lascelles, 2nd Earl of Harewood DL, known as Viscount Lascelles from 1814 to 1820, was a British peer, slave owner and Member of Parliament.
William Saunders Sebright Lascelles PC was a British Whig politician. He served as Comptroller of the Household from 1847 to 1851.
The City of York was a constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It elected one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election.
The post of Lord Lieutenant of the North Riding of Yorkshire was created in 1660, at the Restoration, and was abolished on 31 March 1974. From 1782 until 1974, all Lords Lieutenant were also Custos Rotulorum of the North Riding of Yorkshire.
Ripon was a constituency sending members to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom until 1983, centred on the city of Ripon in North Yorkshire.
East Riding of Yorkshire was a parliamentary constituency covering the East Riding of Yorkshire, omitting Beverley residents save a small minority of Beverley residents who also qualified on property grounds to vote in the county seat. It returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament. A brief earlier guise of the seat covered the changed franchise of the First Protectorate Parliament and Second Protectorate Parliament during a fraction of the twenty years of England and Wales as a republic.
Knaresborough was a parliamentary constituency which returned two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom until 1868, and then one MP until its abolition in 1885.
Walter Strickland was an English politician and diplomat who held high office during the Protectorate.
Sir George Strickland, 7th Baronet, also known as Sir George Cholmley was an English Member of Parliament and lawyer. He took the name Cholmley to succeed to the Cholmley estates in 1865.
Sir Henry Slingsby of Scriven, 1st Baronet was a Yorkshire landowner, politician and soldier who sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1625 and 1642. He was executed for his adherence to the Royalist cause during the English Civil War.
Surrey 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.
Henry Meysey Meysey-Thompson, 1st Baron Knaresborough was a Liberal politician who sat in the House of Commons variously between 1880 and 1905 when he was raised to the peerage as Baron Knaresborough.
Nottinghamshire was a county 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 (MPs), traditionally known as Knights of the Shire.
Hampshire was a county constituency of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which returned two Knights of the Shire to the House of Commons from 1295 until 1832.
Francis Lascelles (1612-1667), also spelt Lassels, was an English politician, soldier and businessman who fought for Parliament in the 1639-1652 Wars of the Three Kingdoms and was a Member of Parliament between 1645 and 1660.
The Honourable Henry Belasyse (1604–1647), also known as Henry Bellasis was an English politician who sat in the House of Commons of England variously between 1625 and 1642.
Sir Thomas Ingram was an English politician who sat in the House of Commons in two periods between 1640 and 1672. He supported the Royalist cause in the English Civil War.
Sir Henry Belasyse, 1st Baronet (1555–1624) was an English politician.