Bennet was Mayor of Derby in 1645 when there was a plague in Derby. He was also a magistrate and in 1650 with Nathaniel Barton conducted the trial of George Fox, founder of the Religious Society of Friends. It was when Fox told the bench "Tremble at the word of the Lord" that Bennet devised the term "Quakers" to refer to members of the Society, a nickname which entered common parlance.
In 1653 Bennet was nominated for the Barebones Parliament as representative for Derbyshire. In 1654, he was elected Member of Parliament for Derby in the First Protectorate Parliament and was returned in the Second Protectorate Parliament in 1656 and the Third Protectorate Parliament of 1659.
- The history and gazetteer of the county of Derby by Stephen Glover, 1831, accessed 31 October 2010
- Joseph Twadell Shipley The Origins of English Words: A Discursive Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
- Willis, Browne (1750). Notitia Parliamentaria, Part II: A Series or Lists of the Representatives in the several Parliaments held from the Reformation 1541, to the Restoration 1660 .... London. pp. 229–239.
- 'General history: Gentry families of uncertain survival', Magna Britannia: volume 5: Derbyshire (1817), pp. CLIII-CLXVII Date accessed: 24 October 2010
|Parliament of England|
Sir John Curzon, 1st Bt.
Sir John Coke
(Both excluded in Pride's Purge)
|Member of Parliament for Derbyshire
With: Nathaniel Barton
|Member of Parliament for Derby