ATKINSON, Christopher (c.1738-1819), of Hales, Norf.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1780 - 4 Dec. 1783
1796 - 1806
1818 - 23 Apr. 1819

Family and Education

b. c.1738. m. Jane, da. and coh. of John Savile of Enfield, Mdx., 1s. 2da. Her sis. m. Sir Thomas Hallifax.

Offices Held


Christopher Atkinson was a corn factor, trading at 15 Mark Lane, London, and a contractor for wheat and malt to the Victualling Board. In 1775 he was defeated at Hedon, and in 1780 was returned after a contest. He supported North’s Administration and voted against Shelburne’s peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, but in March 1783 Robinson classed him as a doubtful friend of North. During his first period in Parliament he is not known to have spoken in the House.

On 31 Jan. 1781 a letter appeared in the General Advertiser accusing him of fraud in his dealings with the Victualling Board. Atkinson swore an affidavit that the charge was untrue, and was prosecuted for perjury. In July 1783 he was found guilty, and sentenced to stand in the pillory, to pay a fine of £2,000, and to be imprisoned for twelve months. In August he petitioned the Treasury that his transactions with the Victualling Board should be laid before the commission of public accounts, but his request was refused;1 and 4 Dec. he was expelled the House.

He changed his name to Savile, 1798, and died 23 Apr. 1819.

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: John Brooke


  • 1. Almon, i. 471.