Available from Boydell and Brewer
Right of Election:
in inhabitants paying scot and lot
Number of voters:
|24 Jan. 1715||JOHN LADE|
|31 Mar. 1722||GEORGE MEGGOTT||1136|
|Sir Fisher Tench||521|
|17 Jan. 1724||JOHN LADE vice Meggott, deceased||790|
|Sir Fisher Tench||533|
|19 Aug. 1727||EDMUND HALSEY|
|SIR JOSEPH EYLES|
|23 Jan. 1730||THOMAS INWEN vice Halsey, deceased||826|
|6 June 1734||THOMAS INWEN||12391||12102|
|6 May 1741||THOMAS INWEN||929|
|30 June 1743||ALEXANDER HUME vice Inwen, deceased||792||732|
|4 Aug. 1747||ALEXANDER HUME||1158|
|Sir James Creed||778||740|
Southwark, a populous borough, was a ward of the city of London, the returning officer, the bailiff, being appointed by the lord mayor. Brewing being the major industry, it was usually represented by one and sometimes two brewers, the other Members being London merchants. All the candidates returned were apparently Whigs.
In 1715, Lade, a brewer and an independent Whig, was re-elected unopposed with Tench, a South Sea director. In 1722 three brewers, Meggott, Halsey and Rush, stood, besides Tench, all singly,3the first two being successful. At a by-election in 1724, Lade replaced Meggott. In 1727 two government supporters, Halsey and Eyles, were returned unopposed. On Halsey’s death in 1729, he was succeeded by Inwen, a brewer and an opposition Whig, who was re-elected in 1734 with George Heathcote, a London merchant and also an opposition Whig, in a contested election during which both sides spent about £1,000.4 In 1741 he was returned again, with Ralph Thrale, another brewer, who voted with the Opposition.
On Inwen’s death in 1743, Alexander Hume, a director of the East India Company, stood.
After a violent opposition and an expensive scrutiny [costing him £3,500]5 he carried the election. He was countenanced at this time by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales ... and was supported by the whole Administration both old and new, by all the public offices, by the East India and other public companies and by most of the merchants in and about London. But party spirit prevailed so much at that time, that although he had then ... a great personal interest in that borough he carried his election by a majority only of 42 out of above 1,500 votes.
In 1747 Hume was again returned ‘having gained the good will of the place so as to have but a faint opposition’,6 together with Belchier, a banker and a government supporter.