Available from Boydell and Brewer
Right of Election:
in inhabitants paying scot and lot
Number of voters:
|21 June 1790||JAMES MARTIN LLOYD||87|
|HENRY THOMAS HOWARD||87|
|Sir John Honywood, Bt.||77|
|HONYWOOD and CURTIS vice Lloyd and Howard, on petition, 7 Mar. 1791|
|24 Mar. 1791||JAMES MARTIN LLOYD vice Honywood, chose to sit for Canterbury||94|
|Samuel Whitbread I||72|
|WHITBREAD vice Lloyd, on petition, 7 May 1792|
|3 Feb. 1794||JOHN HENNIKER MAJOR vice Curtis, vacated his seat||86|
|26 May 1796||JOHN HENNIKER MAJOR|
|JAMES MARTIN LLOYD|
|9 July 1802||JAMES MARTIN LLOYD|
|15 Feb. 1803||CHARLES AUGUSTUS BENNET, Lord Ossulston, vice Hurst, chose sit for Shaftesbury|
|21 Feb. 1806||OSSULSTON re-elected after appointment to office|
|SIR ARTHUR LEARY PIGGOTT vice Lloyd, vacated his seat|
|30 Oct. 1806||JAMES MARTIN LLOYD|
|4 May 1807||JAMES MARTIN LLOYD|
|8 Oct. 1812||SIR JOHN AUBREY, Bt.|
|JAMES MARTIN LLOYD|
|16 June 1818||SIR JOHN AUBREY, Bt.|
Distinct in their parliamentary interests, Steyning and Bramber were territorially interwoven. The franchise had been much disputed in the early 18th century. Oldfield blasted the two boroughs as ‘enveloped in the dark cloud of legal quibble and intricacy ... irregular in their districts, unintelligible in their constitutions, indefinite in their rights, corrupt in the exercise of their functions’.1 The principal landowners in Steyning were Sir John Honywood, Bt.* (who owned all the burgages) and the 11th Duke of Norfolk, lord of the manor. His right of nominating the constable, the returning officer, gave the duke an advantage when he attempted to gain control of the borough at the general election of 1790: his candidates, supported by inhabitant householders paying scot and lot, were returned by a majority of ten votes over their opponents. On petition, the right of election was declared to be in the 102 burgage occupiers: this gave the borough to Sir John Honywood.2 At the by-election arising from his choosing to sit for Canterbury, the constable accepted householders’ votes and returned the ducal candidate. The petition of Whitbread, Honywood’s nominee, was decided in his favour by one vote, the committee declaring that persons could not vote ‘in respect of any houses within the borough of Bramber, the tithing of Bidlington, or the manors of Charlton or King’s Barnes’—all to appearance parts of Steyning village—thereby eliminating some of Lloyd’s votes. But, to Honywood’s chagrin, Lloyd successfully petitioned against the 1791 declaration of the right of election, the committee deciding the borough had a scot and lot franchise: this established Norfolk’s as the principal interest.3
The consequence appears to have been an agreement to share the representation. Norfolk offered no opposition when Henniker Major, a ministerialist, came in, presumably on the Honywood interest, at a by-election in 1794, though the news that the habitual feast was to be omitted caused a large number of voters to nominate another candidate, John Challen, who was in London at the time. Challen had been defeated at Shoreham in 1790. ‘The bread and cheese scheme’, reported a local paper, ‘is not to be attributed to the economy of Mr Major but to the meanness of another person.’4 At the 1796 general election there was no contest: Major was returned together with the inveterate Norfolk candidate Lloyd, who himself possessed some interest in the borough.5 By 1802, the duke had bought Honywood’s property and for the next 30 years he and his successor nominated both Members.
Author: M. H. Port
- 1. Rep. Hist. v. 42.
- 2. Suss. Weekly Advertiser, 28 June 1790; CJ, xlvi. 267; W. Suss. RO, Add. 29077.
- 3. Suss. Weekly Advertiser, 25 Mar. 1791, 7 May 1792; Morning Chron. 16 Apr. 1791; CJ, xlvi. 338; xlvii. 14, 682; W. Suss. RO, Add. 29078.
- 4. Suss. Weekly Advertiser, 10 Feb. 1794.
- 5. Ibid. 4 Apr. 1791.