First Rockingham ministry

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First Rockingham ministry
2nd Marquess of Rockingham cropped.jpg
Rockingham (1766)
Date formed13 July 1765 (1765-07-13)
Date dissolved30 July 1766 (1766-07-30)
People and organisations
MonarchGeorge III
Prime MinisterLord Rockingham
Total no. of ministers12 appointments
Member partyRockingham Whigs
Status in legislatureMajority
Opposition partyGrenvillites
Legislature term(s)12th GB Parliament
PredecessorGrenville ministry
SuccessorChatham ministry

The First Rockingham ministry was a British ministry headed by the Marquess of Rockingham from 1765 to 1766 during the reign of King George III. The government was made up mainly of his followers known as the Rockingham Whigs. The most influential member of the government was the Duke of Newcastle, a former Prime Minister, who served as Lord Privy Seal. It is often referred to as the only government ever to have been made up almost entirely of members of the Jockey Club, with Rockingham himself being a prominent patron and follower of the turf. Rockingham was noted for his ignorance of foreign affairs, and his ministry failed to reverse the growing isolation of Britain within Europe (Simms 2008, p. 520).

The Rockingham ministry fell in 1766 and was replaced by one headed by William Pitt, later the Earl of Chatham.


Portfolio Minister Took office Left office Party
 The Marquess of Rockingham*13 July 1765 (1765-07-13)30 July 1766 (1766-07-30)Whig
Lord Chancellor The Earl of Northington16 January 1761 (1761-01-16)30 July 1766 (1766-07-30)Whig
Lord President of the Council The Earl of Winchilsea12 July 1765 (1765-07-12)30 July 1766 (1766-07-30)Whig
Lord Privy Seal The Duke of Newcastle-upon-Tyne1765 (1765)1766 (1766)Whig
Chancellor of the Exchequer William Dowdeswell16 July 1765 (1765-07-16)2 August 1766 (1766-08-02)Whig
Secretary of State for the Northern Department The Duke of Grafton12 July 1765 (1765-07-12)14 May 1766 (1766-05-14)Whig
 Henry Seymour Conway23 May 1766 (1766-05-23)20 January 1768 (1768-01-20)Whig
 Henry Seymour Conway12 July 1765 (1765-07-12)23 May 1766 (1766-05-23)Whig
Secretary of State for the Southern Department The Duke of Richmond23 May 1766 (1766-05-23)29 July 1766 (1766-07-29)Whig
First Lord of the Admiralty The Earl of Egmont1763 (1763)1766 (1766)Whig
Master-General of the Ordnance The Marquess of Granby1763 (1763)1770 (1770)Independent
Minister without Portfolio The Duke of Cumberland1765 (1765)1766 (1766)Independent


  • October 1765 – The Duke of Cumberland, also the uncle of King George III, dies.
  • May 1766 – The Duke of Grafton resigns from the cabinet. Henry Seymour Conway succeeds him as Northern Secretary, and the Duke of Richmond succeeds Conway as Southern Secretary.

Ministers not in Cabinet[edit]


  • Browning, Reed (1975). The Duke of Newcastle. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-01746-5.
  • Cook, Chris; Stevenson, John (28 February 1980). British Historical Facts: 1760–1830. Palgrave Macmillan UK. ISBN 978-0-333-21512-8.
  • Hibbert, Christopher (1999). George III: A Personal History. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-0-14-025737-3.
  • Simms, Brendan (2008). Three Victories and a Defeat: The Rise and Fall of the First British Empire. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-0-14-028984-8.
Preceded by
Grenville ministry
Government of Great Britain
Succeeded by
Chatham ministry