HAWTREY, Ralph (c.1626-1725), of Eastcote House, Ruislip, Mdx.
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Family and Education
b. c.1626, 1st s. of John Hawtrey of Ruislip by Susannah, da. and coh. of Jacob James of London. educ. G. Inn, entered 1631. m. c.1650, Barbara, da. of Sir Robert de Grey of Merton, Norf., 6s. d.v.p. 4da. suc. fa. 1658.1
J.p. Mdx. 1658-Feb. 1688, Sept. 1688-96, 1700-?d., commr. for militia Mar. 1660, assessment Aug. 1660-80, 1689-90, oyer and terminer Nov. 1660, dep. lt. 1670-Jan. 1688, 1692-6, 1701-?d., commr. for recusants 1675.2
Hawtrey came from a cadet branch of a family which acquired the Chequers estate in the reign of Edward I and represented Buckinghamshire in 1563. His father took no active part in the Civil War, but served on various Middlesex commissions during the Commonwealth and Protectorate. Hawtrey, however, became a Tory. He was foreman of the jury which acquitted Sir George Wakeman in July 1679, and intended to stand for the county in the following month, but desisted on threats of being ‘hissed out of the field’, or worse. He was successful in 1685 and became an active Member of James II’s Parliament. He was appointed to ten committees, including those to recommend the continuance of expiring laws, to estimate the yield of a tax on new buildings, and to consider a bill for the relief of poor debtors.3
Hawtrey presumably opposed the repeal of the Tests and Penal Laws, since he was removed from local office early in 1688. At the general election of 1689 he stood successfully with Sir Charles Gerard against the Whigs Sir Robert Peyton and William Johnson. He was moderately active in the Convention, in which he was appointed to 15 committees. He voted to agree with the Lords that the throne was not vacant. He again helped to estimate the yield of new taxes, and was among those appointed to draft a clause in the additional excise bill. He was added to the committee to inquire into the delay in relieving Londonderry. In the second session he was named to the committees to restrain election expenses and to inquire into the miscarriages and the expenses of the war. He refused the Association in 1696, and died, the last of the Ruislip branch, on 5 Dec. 1725 ‘in the hundredth year of his age’.4