CALCRAFT, Sir Granby Thomas (?1767-1820).
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Family and Education
b. ?1767, 2nd illegit. s. of John Calcraft† of Rempstone, Dorset and Ingress, Kent by the actress Mrs Elizabeth Bride;1 bro. of John Calcraft*. educ. Harrow 1775; Eton 1778-9. unm. Kntd. (order of Maria Theresa) Apr. 1794.
Cornet, 15 Drag. 1788, lt. 1793, capt. 1794; maj. 25 Drag. 1799, 3 Drag. Gds. 1800, brevet lt.-col. 1800, col. 1810, maj.-gen. 1813, res. 1814.
For his part in saving the life of the Austrian Emperor on active service in Flanders in 1794, Calcraft received a knighthood of the order of Maria Theresa. He served again in the Helder expedition of 1799, as aide-de-camp to Lord Paget. Wounded at the second battle of Alkmaar in October 1799, he received during these years ready recognition of his courage and ability and commanded the 3rd Dragoon Guards from 1800 until 1813.2
Calcraft’s brother John asked Joseph Foster Barham* to bring him into Parliament ‘for the first session’ of the 1806 Parliament for a ‘fair’ price.3 Nothing came of this, but he was returned for Wareham on his brother’s interest in 1807. Like him he had joined the Whig Club on 5 Dec. 1786. He voted with opposition, but did not speak during his short Membership. He was in the minorities on the address and Whitbread’s motion, 26 June and 6 July 1807, on the Copenhagen expedition, 3, 8 Feb. 1808; for Burdett’s motion on the droits of Admiralty, 11 Feb.; in favour of peace negotiations, 29 Feb., and against the orders in council and on Ireland, 3 Mar. In April 1808 he made way for Sir Samuel Romilly, and was ordered for service in the Peninsula soon afterwards.4
He served under Henry Fane* and assumed command during the latter’s illness until May 1810. He remained in Spain, distinguishing himself at Llera, 11 June 1812. He received a Portuguese order and left the Peninsula in June 1813, promoted major-general. He was appointed to command a brigade on his return, but conscious of inadequate recognition, which was not unconnected with his brother’s and his own opposition to administration, he threw up his staff appointment and went into retirement. He died at Bath 20 Aug. 1820, aged 53.5