Newcastle under Lyme

Double Member Borough

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer

Background Information

Right of Election:

in the resident freemen

Number of voters:

about 600


16 Apr. 1754John Waldegrave 
 Baptist Leveson Gower 
26 Mar. 1761John Waldegrave 
 Henry Vernon 
27 Dec. 1762Sir Lawrence Dundas vice Vernon, appointed to office 
22 Nov. 1763Thomas Gilbert vice Waldegrave, called to the Upper House 
22 Mar. 1768John Wrottesley 
 Alexander Forrester 
28 Nov. 1768George Hay vice Wrottesley, vacated his seat 
20 Jan. 1774Hay re-elected after appointment to office 
11 Oct. 1774George Waldegrave, Visct. Chewton293
 Sir George Hay270
 Clement Kinnersley193
26 Jan. 1779George Granville Leveson Gower, Visct. Trentham, vice Hay, deceased. 
12 Sept. 1780George Granville Leveson Gower, Visct. Trentham 
 Archibald Macdonald 
2 Apr. 1784Archibald Macdonald 
 Richard Vernon 
4 July 1788Macdonald re-elected after appointment to office 

Main Article

Newcastle-under-Lyme was always classed as a Leveson Gower borough, and only once during this period was that interest seriously challenged. Yet it had a fairly large electorate, and could not have been easy to manage. In 1767 Lord Clive received a letter from three freemen offering the support of 120 more 'to serve any gentleman... willing to offer himself a candidate in opposition ot the present interest'.1 Lord Gower is said to have controlled the borough 'in part by lavish hospitality... and in part by an ingenious device of owning the property in the town and letting the tenants get ten or fifteen years in arrears'.2

Author: John Brooke


  • 1. Signed by Rich. Rhodes, Geo. Taylor, and Wm. Hill, 20 Nov. 1767, Clive mss.
  • 2. J.C. Wedgwood, Staffs. Parlty. Hist. ii. xxvii.