ALDWORTH, Richard Neville (1717-93), of Stanlake and Billingbear, Berks.
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Family and Education
b. 3 Sept. 1717, o.s. of Richard Aldworth of Stanlake by Catherine, da. of Richard Neville, M.P., of Billingbear, sis. of Grey Neville and Henry Grey. educ. Eton 1728-32; Merton, Oxf. 1736; Grand Tour. m. 1748, Magdalen, da. of Francis Calandrini, first syndic of Geneva, 1s. 1da. suc. fa. 1738, and on death of his aunt, Elizabeth, Countess of Portsmouth, in 1762, to estates of his gd.-fa., Richard Neville, changing his name to Neville.
Under-sec. of state 1748-51; sec. to embassy at Paris 1762-3; minister plenip. at Paris May-Nov. 1763; paymaster of pensions 1763-5.
Richard Neville Aldworth came of an old established Berkshire family, with a long Reading connexion.1 His great-grandfather Richard Aldworth had represented the borough in the Cavalier Parliament and his maternal uncle, Henry Grey, from 1734 to 1740. He could write that members of his father’s and mother’s families, whose heir he was, had ‘at times served for every borough in the county, as well as for the county itself’.2 With the support of Lord Fane3 he was returned as a Whig for Reading in 1747. By Fane he was introduced to the Duke of Bedford, served as his under-secretary and followed him into opposition in 1751.
In June 1752, Aldworth, convinced there would be a dissolution the following year, wrote to Bedford that as Henry Pelham was ‘determined it seems to rout me at all events’, he was to be opposed at Reading:
Without a much greater expense than I can answer to myself or family I can never think of carrying my point there, as I must not expect any favour from the Tories, and some of the Pelhamites already say with a sneer, though Mr. Aldworth is a good sort of a man his veering is no reason they should veer too.4
Bedford passed the letter on to Fane, who replied, ‘It is to me plain that he is himself very fond of keeping his footing at Reading, and yet with reason, in dread of the expense of a disputed election’.5 Returned in the end for Wallingford, he remained a faithful follower of Bedford’s till the Duke’s death in 1771. Neville died 17 July 1793.