HUSTLER, Sir William (c.1658-1730), of Acklam, Cleveland, and Little Hatfield, Holderness, Yorks.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1690-1715, ed. D. Hayton, E. Cruickshanks, S. Handley, 2002
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1695 - 1702
1702 - 1705
1705 - 1710

Family and Education

b. c.1658, 1st s. of William Hustler of Acklam by Grace, da. of Sir John Savile of Lupset, nr. Wakefield, Yorks.  m. 8 July 1680, Anne, da. of William Osbaldeston of Hunmanby, Yorks., wid. of Sir Matthew Wentworth of Bretton, Yorks., 3s. (1 d.v.p.) 4da.  Kntd. 14 May 1673; suc. fa. 1678.1

Offices Held

Vice-pres. SPG 1701; member, SPCK, by 1707.2


Hustler’s grandfather came from Bridlington and purchased the manor of Acklam in 1637. Acklam Hall, surrounded by a large park, was built by Hustler in the reigns of Charles II and James II. As a deputy-lieutenant in the North Riding, he gave evasive answers in 1688 to James II’s questions on the repeal of the Test Act and Penal Laws. Politically Hustler was a Whig, and has been noted as an associate of Hon. Thomas Wharton*.3

Returned unopposed for Northallerton in 1695 on the interest of the Whig Sir William Robinson, 1st Bt.*, Hustler was regarded as ‘a good man’ by the Duke of Leeds (Sir Thomas Osborne†). He was classed as ‘doubtful’ in the forecast for the divisions on the proposed council of trade on 31 Jan. 1696, and signed the Association promptly. In the 1696–7 session he was given leave of absence on 24 Nov. for 21 days, and was thus absent from the division on the attainder of Sir John Fenwick†. However, he was back in the House early in 1697, reporting to Sir Abstrupus Danby* on 21 Jan. on parliamentary affairs:

We had today (while the report of the capitation was on) an interruption by an unusual number of people . . . about the bill for prohibiting East India goods. They were so numerous, clamorous and disorderly, threatening to return tomorrow, that it was thought necessary to have the militia up to prevent them and all such disorders. The capitation puts us all to nonplus, and what to supply its room with is as difficult to surmise. Our straits are great, God deliver us out of them.

In the 1697–8 session he managed a bill through the House in April 1698 for the easier return of juries to serve at the assizes.4

Returned unopposed in 1698, Hustler was listed as a member of the Country party in an analysis of the old and new Commons. However, he voted against the third reading of the disbanding bill on 18 Jan. 1699. In April he managed a private bill through the house for selling the estates of the Dissenter, Thomas Lascelles*, for the payment of debts, Lascelles having also sat for Northallerton until his death in 1697. The following year, in an analysis of the House into interests, Hustler was listed as an adherent of the Junto. Having been returned unopposed in the first 1701 election, he was forecast as likely to support the Court in agreeing with the supply committee’s resolution to continue the ‘Great Mortgage’. Between April and June 1701 he managed two private estate bills through the House. During the course of this year he was appointed as a vice-president of the newly founded SPG. Returned unopposed again for Northallerton in the second 1701 election, in December he was classed as a Whig by Robert Harley*. In February 1702 he told against a motion to recommit the bill for the further security of the King’s person (10th), and for the motion that the Earl of Athlone’s petition relating to the Irish forfeitures, which Hustler had delivered to the House, should be considered at the same time as the other petitions on forfeitures (17th). In April he acted as a teller on two occasions in relation to the bill, which he had been involved in drafting, for rebuilding Whitby harbour (2nd, 24th), while he also told for committing the bill for settling a charity of £10,000 for erecting Worcester College, Oxford (29th), and for a motion to bring in a bill for the relief of the Earl of Athlone (30th). The following month he told on the 19th for engrossing the bill for the relief of Protestant tenants of Irish forfeited estates.5

Returned unopposed for Northallerton and Ripon in 1702, in November, Hustler elected to sit for Ripon, in what appeared to be an accommodation with John Aislabie, the outgoing Ripon MP, in order to let Aislabie come in at Northallerton. This agreement may have been brokered by Sir William Robinson, Aislabie’s brother-in-law, on whose interest Hustler was returned for Northallerton. On 14 Dec. Hustler told against a motion that all committees be revived, while on the 16th he reported from the committee on expiring laws, and later that month, and again during January and February 1703, managed the bill for continuing certain laws. In January he managed through the House a private bill relating to an estate in Essex. On 13 Feb. he voted for agreeing with the Lords’ amendments to the bill for extending the time for taking the oath of abjuration. In the 1703–4 session, during January and February 1704, he managed a bill for the discharge of insolvent debtors who were willing to serve in the army and navy. At the beginning of the 1704–5 session he was classed as a probable opponent of the Tack, and either voted against it on 28 Nov. 1704, or was absent. He told on 23 Jan. 1705 against a motion that the committee on the button-making bill be discharged, while in the same month he managed through the House a private bill relating to an estate.6

Though there had been several contenders at Northallerton before the 1705 election, Hustler was eventually returned unopposed. In an analysis of the new Parliament he was noted as a ‘Churchman’, while on 25 Oct. he voted for the Court candidate as Speaker. In early 1706 he managed a private bill through the House relating to an estate, while on 18 Feb. he supported the Court in the proceedings on the ‘place clause’ of the regency bill. In the 1706–7 session he managed a bill through the House in February 1707, for making the ‘foreign-built’ Prince a free ship. In 1708 he was classed as a Whig in two separate analyses of Parliament before and after the election in that year, in which he was returned unopposed for Northallerton once more. On 20 Jan. 1709 he told against the Tory motion for adjourning the hearing on the Abingdon election. He supported the naturalization of the Palatines, while in March he told against recommitting the report on a breach of privilege against George Duckett* (5th), and for an amendment to the mutiny bill (17th). In March and April he managed through the House the bill for raising the militia, and acted as a teller against a motion for allowing the Chancery clerks to be heard at the bar in support of their petition (15 Apr.). In the 1709–10 session, between January and March, he managed through the House a private bill relating to an estate in Ireland. At the same time, in keeping with his Whiggish sympathies, he voted for the impeachment of Dr Sacheverell.7

A correspondent of Harley’s correctly forecast that Hustler would not get in at Northallerton at the election of 1710, when he came bottom of the poll. He did not sit in Parliament again. As an active member of the SPCK, Hustler was involved in vetting ‘correspondents’ for the Society and in establishing charity schools in Wakefield. He is regarded as one of the great patrons of such schools during this period. He died at Acklam on 20 Aug. 1730. He was described in the Daily Post as ‘a gentleman of an unblemished character, and whose loss is extremely lamented by his county, to which he had retired some years before his death’. By his will he left all the capital messuages at Acklam to his wife, while his other manors were placed in trust for 300 years.8

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Authors: Eveline Cruickshanks / Ivar McGrath


  • 1. Top. and Gen. i. 497–8; Dugdale’s Vis. Yorks. ed. Clay, i. 196; Le Neve’s Knights (Harl. Soc. viii), 285; Poulson, Holderness, i. 441.
  • 2. Bodl. Ballard 7, f. 100; SPCK arch. min. bk. 4, pp. 9, 69; Past and Present, cxxviii. 65.
  • 3. VCH Yorks. N. Riding, ii. 271; J. Taylor, A Journey to Edinburgh, 75–76; Duckett, Penal Laws and Test Act (1882), 93; Robbins thesis, 203.
  • 4. Glos. RO, Sharp mss 4/K27, Leeds to abp. of York, 10 Sept. 1695; N. Yorks. RO, Swinton mss, Danby pprs. ZS, Hustler to Danby, 21 Jan. 1696–7.
  • 5. Ballard 7, f. 100; Cocks Diary, 216.
  • 6. Sharp mss 4/K27, Leeds to abp. of York, 10 Sept. 1695.
  • 7. Bull. IHR, xxxvii. 32; Quinn thesis, 115, 119.
  • 8. SPCK Archs. min. bk. 4, pp. 9, 69; Past and Present, 65, 91; Ingledew, 137; Daily Post, 1 Sept. 1730 (ex. inf. Prof. J. Black); Borthwick Inst. York, wills, Prerog. Ct. Dec. 1730.