KEMP, Robert (1667-1734), of Hoxne and Ubbeston, Suff.

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



Feb. 1701 - 1705
1708 - 5 Feb. 1709
1713 - 1715
9 Feb. 1732 - 18 Dec. 1734

Family and Education

b. 25 Jan. 1667, 2nd but 1st surv. s. (1st by 2nd w.) of Sir Robert Kemp, 2nd Bt.†, of Gissing Hall, Norf. and Ubbeston by Mary, da. and h. of John Soane of Ubbeston.  educ. St. Catharine’s, Camb. 1685.  m. (1) by 1693, Letitia, da. of Robert King of Great Thurlow, Suff., 2da.; (2) by 1696, Mary Elizabeth (d. 1709), da. and h. of John Brand of Edwardstone, Suff., 6s. (1 d.v.p.) 4da.; (3) aft. 1710, Martha (d. 1727), da. of William Blackwell of Mortlake, Surr., 1s. 2da.; (4) 9 July 1728, Amy, da. of Richard Philips*, wid. of John Burrough of Ipswich, Suff., s.psuc. fa. as 3rd Bt. 26 Sept. 1710.1

Offices Held

Common councilman, Dunwich 1700, bailiff 1700–2, 1707–8, alderman 1701; freeman, Orford 1709.2


Kemp’s father had originally inclined towards the Whigs, then gone over to the Tories. Accepting the Revolution, his political stance thereafter seems to have been that of a moderate Tory: his presence among the Suffolk justices purged by the Whigs in 1694 ‘made all men wonder’. Kemp himself was returned on the family interest for Dunwich in February 1701 with his Tory brother-in-law Sir Charles Blois, 1st Bt.* On 9 Apr. he was granted a fortnight’s leave of absence. Classed with the Tories in Robert Harley’s* list of the 1701–2 Parliament, he voted on 26 Feb. 1702 for the motion vindicating the proceedings of the Commons in the previous session over the impeachment of King William’s Whig ministers. Forecast as a supporter of the Tack, he duly voted for it on 28 Nov. 1704. After his mother’s death in 1705 he left Hoxne to live with his father at Ubbeston. In 1708 Kemp and Blois defeated two Whigs at Dunwich but were unseated on petition. He was returned unopposed in 1713, and later classed as a Tory in the Worsley list. He lost his seat in 1715.3

Returned at a by-election for Suffolk in 1732, he died on 18 Dec. 1734, having been taken ill suddenly in his coach as he was travelling up to Parliament.4

Ref Volumes: 1690-1715

Author: D. W. Hayton


  • 1. F. Hitchen-Kemp, Kemp Fam. pt.2, pp. 8, 43, 46–49; Add. 19185, f. 200.
  • 2. Suff. RO (Ipswich), Dunwich bor. recs. EE6 1144/14; T. Gardner, Dunwich (1754), 85–86; W. Suss. RO, Shillinglee mss Ac.454/1083, John Hooke to Sir Edward Turnor*, 28 Sept. 1709.
  • 3. Bohun Diary ed. Wilton Rix, 121; Hitchen-Kemp, 47–49.
  • 4. Hitchen-Kemp, 49.