BATHURST, Henry George, Lord Apsley (1790-1866).
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Family and Education
b. 24 Feb. 1790, 1st s. of Henry Bathurst*, 3rd Earl Bathurst, and bro. of Hon. Seymour Thomas Bathurst*, and Hon. William Lennox Bathurst*. educ. by Dr Moore, Sunbury;1 Eton 1802; Glasgow Univ. 1806; Christ Church, Oxf. 1808. unm. suc. fa. as 4th Earl Bathurst 27 July 1834.
Commr. Board of Control Sept. 1812-June 1818.
Capt. commdt. Cirencester yeoman cav. 1810.
In February 1810 Apsley’s uncle, the 4th Duke of Richmond, viceroy of Ireland, offered to return him for Chichester at the first opportunity, but his father, a member of Perceval’s cabinet, had to remind Richmond that he would not come of age for another year. No vacancy occurred at Chichester in the interim and in July 1811 Lord Bathurst wondered whether Richmond could bring him in there for the next session if George III recovered and there was no dissolution. In the event of a general election he intended to put Apsley forward for Cirencester on the family interest.2 Richmond was unable to oblige, but the 2nd Marquess of Bath provided Apsley with a seat for Weobley on a vacancy in January 1812. He voted with government against the reversion bill, 7 Feb. and the sinecure bill, 4 May, but was one of the ministerialists ‘allowed to go or remain in the country’ despite the prospects of defeat, which duly occurred, on the sinecure paymastership, 24 Feb. 1812.3 Nor was he in the ministerial minority against the call for a stronger administration, 21 May. He was one of the die-hard opponents of Catholic relief, 22 June, and he consistently voted against it throughout this period.
Lord Bathurst entered Liverpool’s cabinet in June 1812 and in September Apsley was given office at the Board of Control. At the general election he was returned, after a contest, for Cirencester, for which he sat until his father’s death removed him from the Commons. In April 1814 he went to Paris, where Castlereagh took him under his wing. He accompanied Castlereagh to Vienna later in the year and came home in May 1815. After voting against inquiry into the Regent’s expenditure on the 31st he returned to the Continent to join Wellington’s staff ‘without any military commission’. He was present at the battle of Waterloo and Lady Harriet Leveson Gower reported from Paris, 31 July 1815:
Lord Apsley is full of the battle, in which he by all accounts put himself forward as much as any who were not obliged to do so. He is a good-natured, friendly creature, and has shown great spirit where he might have got off without showing any.4
He was back in England by March 1816 and for the rest of the Parliament voted dutifully with his colleagues in office, without drawing attention to himself. He is not reported as speaking in the House before 1820 and his reasons for relinquishing his office in 1818 are unknown. He was a defaulter ordered to attend, 1 Apr. 1819,5 but he was present to vote against Tierney’s censure motion, 18 May, and for the foreign enlistment bill, 10 June. He died 25 May 1866.