LAURENCE, otherwise LAWRENCE, William (?1723-98), of Kirkby Fleetham, Yorks.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1761 - 1768
30 Oct. 1775 - 1780
5 June 1781 - 2 Sept. 1798

Family and Education

b. ?1723, 2nd s. of Capt. Thomas Laurence, RN, by Elizabeth, da. of Gabriel Soulden, merchant, of Kinsale, co. Cork, wid. of Col. Piers. m. 21 Nov. 1759, Anna Sophia, da. and coh. of William Aislabie of Studley Royal, nr. Ripon, Yorks., 1s. d.v.p. 1da.

Offices Held

?Capt. 9 Marines, half-pay 1748-d.


Laurence, who had been returned for Ripon by his father-in-law, came in after the latter’s death in 1781 on his wife’s interest. He opposed Pitt in the Parliament of 1784 and the Treasury queried whether they could obtain access to him before the election of 1790. He met with the Portland Whigs on 11 May 1790. He went on to vote with opposition on Pitt’s Russian policy, 12 Apr. 1791 and 1 Mar. 1792. These were his last known votes in the minority. He had been listed ‘doubtful’ on the question of Test Act repeal in April 1791. In December 1792 he was listed a Portland Whig and evidently joined them in support of government during the war with France. He was certainly listed ‘pro’ before the next election. He is not known to have spoken in the House after 1790. He died 2 Sept. 1798, aged 75. His daughter and heiress subsequently upheld the family interest in Ripon.

Buckingham, Court and Cabinets, ii. 71; PRO 30/8/196.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: Winifred Stokes