He unsuccessfully contested the 1885 general election in Barkston Ash, and at the 1886 election he stood in Chesterfield, where he was narrowly beaten by the sitting Liberal Unionist MP, Alfred Barnes. At the 1892 general election he unseated Barnes by a majority of 182 votes, and held the seat with slightly increased majorities at subsequent elections until he stood down at the 1906 general election.
He died aged 59 in March 1906, two months after the 1906 election.
- "House of Commons constituencies beginning with "C" (part 3)". Leigh Rayment's House of Commons pages. Retrieved 2009-04-05.
- Craig, F. W. S. (1989) . British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 248, 431. ISBN 0-900178-27-2.
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Thomas Bayley
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