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Launceston Members of Parliament


Launceston was one of 21 parliamentary boroughs in Cornwall between the 16th and 19th centuries; unlike many of these, which had been little more than villages even when established and were rotten boroughs from the start, Launceston had been a town of reasonable size and importance though much in decline by the 19th century. The borough consisted of only part of the present town, as Newport was a separate borough in itself from 1554, though Newport and Launceston were joined together as Dunheved, collectively returning members, earlier in that century.
The right to vote was vested theoretically in the Mayor, aldermen and those freemen of the borough who were resident at the time they became freemen; but in practice the vote was exercised only by members of the corporation, who were chosen mainly with a view to maintaining the influence of the “patron”. Up to 1775, this was generally the head of the Morice family, who also controlled Newport, but in that year Humphry Morice sold his interest in both boroughs to the Duke of Newcastle, whose family retained hold on both until the Reform Act. There were about 17 voters in Launceston in 1831, by which time the borough was as rotten as any of the others in Cornwall.
In 1831 the borough had a population of 2,669 and 429 houses. Under the Great Reform Act of 1832 the boundaries were extended to encompass the whole town (including Newport, which was abolished as a separate borough), bringing the population up to 5,394. This was sufficient for Launceston to retain one of its two seats.
The borough was eventually abolished in 1885, but the name of the town was transferred to the new county constituency in which it was placed, strictly the North-Eastern or Launceston Division of Cornwall, which also elected a single member. This covered a much larger, rural, area including Callington, Calstock and Bude-Stratton. This constituency in its turn was abolished in 1918, being absorbed mostly into the new Cornwall North constituency.

Launceston formerly known as Dunheved.
1358 John Hamely
1386 John Cokeworthy I Roger Leye
1388 (Feb) John Cokeworthy I William Bodrugan
1388 (Sep) Thomas Trereise Thomas Treuref
1390 (Jan) John Cokeworthy I John Syreston
1390 (Nov) ?
1391 John Cokeworthy I Richard Lovyn
1393 John Cokeworthy I Richard Lovyn
1394 1395 John Cokeworthy I Richard Lovyn
1397 (Jan) John Cokeworthy I Richard Tolle
1397 (Sep) Roger Menwenick William Holt
1399 John Cokeworthy I John Goly
1401 1402 Thomas Colyn Richard Raddow
1404 (Jan) ?
404 (Oct) ?
1406 Walter Tregarya John Colet
1407 Richard Brackish ?John Pengersick
1410 Edward Burnebury John Cory
1411 Edward Burnebury Richard Trelawny
1413 (Feb) 1413 (May) Edward Burnebury John Mayhew
1414 (Apr)
1414 (Nov) Edward Burnebury John Cory
1415 ?
1416 (Mar) Oliver Wyse Edward Burnebury
1416 (Oct)
1417 Edward Burnebury John Cory
1419 Edward Burnebury Edward Burnebury
1420 Simon Yurle Edward Burnebury
1421 (May) Simon Yurle John Cory
1421 (Dec) John Treffriowe Edward Burnebury
1510–1523 No names known
1529 Sir Edward Ryngley John Rastell
1536 ?
1539 ?
1542 ?
1545 William Cordell Robert Taverner
1547 William Cordell Nicholas Carminowe
First Parliament of 1553 William Ley alias Kempthorne John Kempthorne
Second Parliament of 1553 Robert Monson
Parliament of 1554 Arthur Welsh
Parliament of 1554–1555 William Bendlow
Parliament of 1555 Robert Grenville
Parliament of 1558 Thomas Roper, Robert Monson, John Heydon
Parliament of 1559 George Basset Ayshton Aylworth Wiliiam Gibbes
Parliament of 1563–1567 Richard Grenville Henry Chiverton Parliament of 1571 George Grenville Sampson Lennard
Parliament of 1572–1581 George Blyth George Grenville
Parliament of 1584–1585 Roland Watson John Glanville Parliament of 1586–1587 John Spurling
Parliament of 1588–1589
Parliament of 1593 George Grenville
Parliament of 1597–1598 Herbert Croft Sir William Bowyer
Parliament of 1601 John Parker Gregory Downhall
Parliament of 1604–1611 Sir Thomas Lake Ambrose Rous
Addled Parliament (1614) Sir Charles Wilmot William Croft
Parliament of 1621–1622 John Harris Thomas Bond
Happy Parliament (1624–1625) Sir Francis Crane Miles Fleetwood
Useless Parliament (1625) Sir Bevil Grenville Richard Scott Parliament of 1625–1626 Parliament of 1628–1629
No Parliament summoned 1629–1640
April 1640 Sir Bevil Grenville Royalist, Ambrose Manaton Royalist
November 1640 William Coryton, Ambrose Manaton
1641 John Harris Parliamentarian January
1644 Manaton disabled from sitting – seat vacant
1645 Thomas Gewen December 1648 Harris and Gewen excluded in Pride’s Purge – both seats vacant
1653 Launceston was unrepresented in the Barebones Parliament
1654 Robert Bennet Launceston had only one seat in the First and Second Parliaments of the Protectorate.
1656 Thomas Gewen
January 1659 Robert Bennet
May 1659 Not represented in the restored Rump.
12 Apr 1660 Edward Eliot, Thomas Gewen, and John Cloberry Double return. Eliot and Gewen seated on 5 May 1660. Eliot subsequently unseated and replaced by Clobery on 29 Jun 1660.
29 Jun 1660 Sir John Cloberry
19 Mar 1661 Richard Edgcumbe, Sir Charles Harbord (to Sep 1679)
14 Feb 1679 Bernard Granville
1 Sep 1679 Sir John Coryton,1st baronet Sir Hugh Piper (to 1689)
19 Nov 1680 Charles Granville, styled Baron Lansdown, later (1701) 2nd Earl of Bath
24 Feb 1681 William Harbord (he was also returned for Thetford,but the Parliament was dissolved before he chose which seat to represent)
27 Apr 1685 John Granville, later (1703) 1st Baron Granville
14 Jan 1689 William Harbord (to 1692), Edward Russell,later [1697] 1st Earl of Orford
25 Feb 1690 Bernard Granville (to 1695) 4
15 Nov 1692 Henry Hyde,styled Viscount Hyde later (1711) 2nd Earl of Rochester and (1724) 4th Earl of Clarendon (to 1711)
28 Oct 1695 William Cary
24 Oct 1710 Francis Scobell (to 1713)
29 May 1711 George Clarke
7 Sep 1713 Edward Herle, John Anstis (to 1722)
11 May 1721 Alexander Pendarves (to 1725) 11 Nov 1662 8 Mar 1725 62
12 Apr 1722 John Friend (he was unseated on petition in favour of John Willes 17 Mar 1724)
17 Mar 1724 John Willes (to 1726)
29 Mar 1725 John Friend (to 1727)
31 May 1726 Henry Vane, later (1754) 1st Earl of Darlington
28 Aug 1727 John King, later 2nd Baron King of Ockham (to 1735) (he was unseated on petition in favour of Sir William Irby 24 May 1735), Arthur Tremayne
3 May 1734 Sir William Morice, 3rd baronet (to 1750)
24 May 1735 Sir William Irby, 2nd baronet, later (1761) 1st Baron Boston
2 Jul 1747 Sir John St.Aubyn,4th baronet (to 1754)
2 Feb 1750 Humphry Morice (to 1780)
19 Apr 1754 Sir George Lee
30 Dec 1758 Sir John St.Aubyn, 4th baronet (he was unseated on petition in favour of Peter Burrell 21 Feb 1759)
21 Feb 1759 Peter Burrell 6 Dec
18 Mar 1768 William Amherst
10 Oct 1774 John Buller
8 Sep 1780 James Cecil, styled Viscount Cranborne, later (1780) 7th Earl of Salisbury and (1789) 1st Marquess of Salisbury, Thomas Bowlby (to 1783)
28 Nov 1780 Charles George Perceval, later (1784]) 1st Baron Arden and (1802) 1st Baron Arden (to 1790)
31 Jan 1783 Sir John Jervis, later (1797) 1st Earl of St.Vincent
5 Apr 1784 George Rose
18 Jun 1788 Sir John Edward Swinburne, 6th baronet
22 Jun 1790 John Rodney (to 1796), Sir Henry Clinton 4 Jun 1730 23 Dec 1795 65
9 Jan 1795 William Garthshore
31 May 1796 John Theophilus Rawdon, James Brogden (to 1832)
7 Jul 1802 Richard Alexander Henry Bennet
4 Nov 1806 Hugh Percy,styled Earl Percy, later (1817) 3rd Duke of Northumberland (at the general election in May 1807, he was also returned for Northumberland,for which he chose to sit)
17 Jul 1807 Richard Alexander Henry Bennet
8 May 1812 Jonathan Raine
9 Oct 1812 Pownoll Bastard Pellew, later (1833) 2nd Viscount Exmouth
17 Mar 1829 Sir James Willoughby Gordon, 1st baronet
9 Apr 1831 Sir John Malcolm
In 1832 representation was reduced to just the one member under the Great Reform Act of 1832 .
12 Dec 1832 Sir Henry Hardinge, later (1846) 1st Viscount Hardinge
20 May 1844 William Bowles (knighted 1862)
7 Jul 1852 Josceline William Percy
29 Apr 1859 Thomas Chandler Haliburton
10 Jul 1865 Alexander Henry Campbell
9 Apr 1868 Henry Charles Lopes, later (1897) 1st Baron Ludlow
9 Feb 1874 James Henry Deakin (the elder) (his election was declared void 6 May 1874)
3 Jul 1874 James Henry Deakin (the younger)
3 Mar 1877 Sir Hardinge Stanley Giffard, later (1898) 1st Earl of Halsbury
1 Jul 1885 Sir Richard Everard Webster, later (1899) 1st baronet and (1913) 1st Viscount Alverstone
1 Dec 1885 Charles Thomas Dyke-Acland, later (1898) 12th baronet
Jul 1892 Thomas Owen
Thomas Owen, MP for Launceston 1892-1898
Owen died as a result of an accident on 10 July 1898. The result of the inquest which was held following his death was reported in the “Belfast News-Letter” on 12 July 1898:-
‘An inquest has held at Cwmrhaidr Mansion, near Machynlleth, yesterday evening, relative to the death of Mr. Thomas Owen, member of Parliament for the Launceston Division of Cornwall. Mrs. Owen stated her husband and herself came to Cwmrhaidr on Friday in order to recuperate her health. On Sunday afternoon they went to a spot under the waterfall, and sat together some time. Her husband remarked that he had heard it was as easy to cross the fall as to go by the path. He got up, and as he did not return she imagined he had gone home. On her proceeding there, however, she found he had not arrived, and his dead body was subsequently found in a pool underneath the fall. Evidence having been given as to the dangerous nature of the spot in question, Dr. Rees said he had examined the body of the deceased and found no signs of disease or illness. He was of opinion that Mr. Owen was stunned by falling against a rock, and that before he came to his senses he was drowned. The jury, after a short deliberation, returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony…….’
3 Aug 1898 John Fletcher Moulton (knighted 1906), later (1912) Baron Moulton
20 Jan 1906 George Croydon Marks (knighted 1911), later (1929) 1st Baron Marks
The constituency of Launceston was abolished in 1918 .

13 Apr 1660 Sir Francis Drake, 2nd baronet (to 1662), and William Morice (he was also returned for Plymouth,for which he chose to sit)
20 Aug 1660 Laurence Hyde, later (1682)1st Earl of Rochester
4 Apr 1661 John Speccot (to 1678)
C. Feb 1662 Piers Edgcumbe
25 Mar 1667 Nicholas Morice (to Feb 1679)
c Feb 1678 Ambrose Manaton (to 1685)
17 Feb 1679 Sir John Coryton, 2nd baronet
18 Sep 1679 Sir William Coryton, later (1690) 3rd baronet
8 Mar 1681 William Morice (to 1689)
22 Apr 1685 John Speccot (to 1695)
18 Jan 1689 Sir William Morice,1st baronet
24 Feb 1690 Charles Cheyne, 1st Viscount Newhaven ( He was also returned for Harwich,for which he chose to sit)
16 Dec 1690 John Morice (to 1699) (at the general election in Aug 1698,Morice was also returned for Saltash,for which he chose to sit)
14 Nov 1695 Charles Cheyne, 1st Viscount Newhaven
4 Aug 1698 John Granville,later (1703) 1st Baron Granville (to Jan 1701)
27 Jan 1699 Francis Stratford (to Dec 1701)
15 Jan 1701 John Prideaux
3 Dec 1701 William Pole, later [1708] 4th baronet, and John Spark (to 1707)
27 Jul 1702 Sir Nicholas Morice, 2nd baronet (to 1726)
21 Jan 1707 Sir John Pole, 3rd baronet
17 May 1708 Sir William Pole, 4th baronet
21 Oct 1710 George Courtenay
7 Sep 1713 Humphry Morice
13 Apr 1722 Sir William Pole (he was also returned for 17 Aug 1678 31 Dec 1741 63 Honiton,for which he chose to sit)
11 Dec 1722 John Morice (to 1727)
18 Feb 1726 Thomas Herbert (to 1740)
23 Aug 1727 Sir William Morice, 3rd baronet
4 May 1734 Sir John Molesworth, 4th baronet (to 1741)
22 Jan 1740 Nicholas Herbert (to 1754)
13 May 1741 Thomas Bury
23 Apr 1754 John Lee (to 1761), and Edward Bacon
26 Jun 1756 Richard Bull (to 1780)
7 Dec 1761 William de Grey, later (1780) 1st Baron Walsingham
12 Feb 1770 Richard Henry Alexander Bennett
11 Oct 1774 Humphry Morice (he was also returned for Launceston,for which he chose to sit)
30 Dec 1774 John Frederick, later (1783) 5th baronet
9 Sep 1780 James Maitland, styled Viscount Maitland, later (1789) 8th Earl of Lauderdale, and John Coghill, later (1781) 1st baronet (to 1785)
7 Apr 1784 Sir John Riggs-Miller,1st baronet (to 1790)
13 Dec 1785 William Mitford
23 Jun 1790 William Robert Feilding, styled Viscount Feilding, and Charles Rainsford
28 May 1796 William Northey (to 1826), and Joseph Richardson
20 Jun 1803 Edward Morris
10 Oct 1812 Jonathan Raine (to Jul 1831)
8 Feb 1826 Charles Greathead-Bertie-Percy
20 Mar 1829 William Vesey-Fitzgerald, later (1832) 2nd Baron Fitzgerald & Vesey
30 Jul 1830 John Doherty
17 Dec 1830 Sir Henry Hardinge, later (1846) 1st Viscount Hardinge (to 1832)
12 Jul 1831 James Walter Grimston, styled Viscount Grimston, later (1845) 2nd Earl of Verulam
Newport constituency was disenfranchised in Great Reform Act of 1832 .

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