Petersfield (UK Parliament constituency)

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Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
Number of members 1547–1832: two
1832–1983: one
Replaced by East Hampshire
Created from Hampshire

Petersfield was an English Parliamentary constituency centred on the town of Petersfield in Hampshire. It existed for several hundred years until its abolition for the 1983 general election.

Until 1832, it returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Thereafter, its representation was reduced to one member until its abolition in 1983.

Members of Parliament[edit]

MPs for Petersfield borough (1547-1885)[edit]

MPs 1547–1660[edit]

Parliament First member Second member
1547 George Tadlowe Lawrence Elveden alias Cattaneo [1]
1553 (Mar) Sir Anthony Browne John Vaughan [1]
1553 (Oct) Sir Anthony Browne George Rithe [1]
1554 (Apr) John Vaughan Henry Weston [1]
1554 (Nov) John Vaughan Henry Weston [1]
1555 Christopher Rithe Henry Weston [1]
1558 Henry Weston Christopher Rithe [1]
1559 Sir Henry Weston George Rithe [2]
1563 Sir Henry Weston Tomas Dering [2]
1571 John Cowper Robert Rithe [2]
1572 Richard Norton Ralph Bourchier, sat for Newcastle-under-Lyme
and repl. Apr 1572 by
Thomas Chatterton [2]
1584 Sir Henry Weston Edmund Marvyn [2]
1586 Edward Radclyffe Edmund Marvyn [2]
1588 Benjamin Tichborne Edmund Marvyn [2]
1593 Sir Walter Covert Richard Weston (MP for Petersfield) [2]
1597 William Kingswell Thomas Hanbury [2]
1601 William Kingswell John Swynnerton[2]
1604 Sir William Hervey Sir William Kingsmill
1614 Sir Walter Tichborne Walter Savage
1621-1622 Richard Norton John Hippisley
1624 Sir John Jephson Sir John Hippisley
1625 Sir John Jephson William Uvedale
1626 Benjamin Tichborne William Uvedale
1628-1629 Benjamin Tichborne William Uvedale
1629–1640 No Parliaments summoned
1640 (Apr) William Uvedale Sir William Lewis
1640 (Nov) William Uvedale, disabled Sir William Lewis
1645 Sir William Lewis,excluded 1648 William Uvedale
1653 Petersfield not represented in Barebones Parliament
1654 Petersfield not represented in 1st Protectorate Parliament
1656 Petersfield not represented in 2nd Protectorate Parliament
1659 Josias Child Sir Henry Norton

MPs 1660–1832[edit]

Year First member First party Second member Second party
April 1660 Thomas Cole [3] Arthur Bold
1661 Sir Humphrey Bennet
1668 Thomas Neale
1677 Leonard Bilson
1679 Sir John Norton, Bt
1685 Thomas Bilson
1689 Robert Michell
1690 Richard Holt
1698 Peter Bettesworth
January 1701 Ralph Bucknall Richard Markes
November 1701 Robert Michell
1704 Leonard Bilson
1705 Norton Powlett
1715 Samuel Pargiter-Fuller
1722 Edmund Miller
January 1727 Joseph Taylor [4]
May 1727 Edmund Miller
August 1727 Joseph Taylor
1734 Sir William Jolliffe Edward Gibbon
1741 John Jolliffe Francis Fane
1747 William Conolly
February 1754 William Gerard Hamilton
April 1754 William Beckford [5]
December 1754 Sir John Philipps, Bt
1761 John Jolliffe Richard Pennant
1767 Richard Croftes
1768 William Jolliffe Welbore Ellis
1774 Sir Abraham Hume
1780 Thomas Samuel Jolliffe
1787 The Viscount Downe
June 1790 Hon. George Augustus North
December 1790 Marquess of Titchfield
1791 Welbore Ellis
1795 Hon. Charles Greville
1796 Hylton Jolliffe
1797 Sir John Sinclair, Bt
March 1802 Hylton Jolliffe
July 1802 William Draper Best
1806 Hon. John Ward
1807 Booth Grey
October 1812 George Canning
December 1812 George Canning, junior
March 1820 The Lord Hotham [6]
June 1820 Sir Philip Musgrave, Bt
1825 James Law Lushington
1826 William Marshall
1830 Sir William Jolliffe, Bt Gilbert East Jolliffe
1831 Hylton Jolliffe
1832 Representation reduced to one member

MPs 1832–1885[edit]

Election Member Party
1832 [7] John Shaw-Lefevre Liberal Party
1833 [7] Hylton Jolliffe Tory
1834 Conservative Party
1835 Cornthwaite Hector Liberal Party
1837 [8] Sir William Jolliffe, Bt Conservative Party
1838 [8] Cornthwaite Hector Liberal Party
1841 Sir William Jolliffe Conservative Party
1866 by-election William Nicholson Liberal Party
1874 [9] William Sydney Hylton Jolliffe Conservative Party
1880 William Nicholson Liberal Party
1885 Borough abolished - name transferred to county division

MPs for Petersfield county constituency (1885–1983)[edit]

Election Member Party
1885 Viscount Wolmer Liberal
1886 Liberal Unionist
1892 William Wickham Conservative
1897 by-election William Graham Nicholson Conservative
1935 Sir Reginald Dorman-Smith Conservative
1941 by-election Sir George Jeffreys Conservative
1951 Peter Legh Conservative
1960 Joan Quennell Conservative
1974 Michael Mates Conservative
1983 Constituency abolished
General Election 1929: Petersfield[10]

Electorate 41,587

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. William Graham Nicholson 15,605
Liberal Vernon Gerald Bailey 9,334
Labour Getrude Speedwell Massingham 3,418


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "History of Parliament". History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "History of Parliament". History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 2011-10-31. 
  3. ^ April 1660: Cole was also elected for Winchester, but appears never to have chosen which constituency he would sit for so as to allow a replacement to be elected for the other
  4. ^ On petition (in a dispute over the franchise), Taylor's election was declared void and his opponent, Miller, was declared to have been duly elected
  5. ^ Beckford was also elected for the City of London, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Petersfield
  6. ^ Hotham was also elected for Leominster, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Petersfield
  7. ^ a b In 1832 a petition was lodged against the result, and the election of John Shaw-Lefevre was declared void. After scrutiny of the ballots, Hylton Jolliffe was declared elected in 1833.
    F.W.S. Craig's British parliamentary election results 1832–1885 and Henry Stooks Smith's The Parliaments of England from 1715 to 1847 record the member seated after the petition as William Jolliffe. However, the The History of Parliament's article on Petersfield borough note in footnote 42 that both the official returns (PP (1878), lxii, pt. ii, 348) and the 1833 petition (CJ, lxxxviii. 13-14) confirm that the member seated was Hylton Jolliffe. This is as reported in the Times article on the petition committee's report: "Petersfield Election Committee", The Times, 7 March 1833, page 4.
  8. ^ a b In 1837 a petition was lodged against the result, and the election of Jolliffe was declared void. After scrutiny of the ballots, Hector was declared elected in 1838
  9. ^ In 1874, a petition was lodged against the election of Jolliffe. Scrutiny of the results led to a referral to the Court of Common Pleas on the validity of 64 of Joliffe's votes and 11 of those for Nicholson. The votes were declared valid and the election upheld.
  10. ^ British parliamentary election results 1918-1949, Craig, F. W. S.

Election results[edit]