John Smith (Wendover MP)

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Arms of Smith: Or, a chevron cotised sable between three demi-griffins couped of the last the two in chief respecting each other[1]

John Smith (6 September 1767 – 20 January 1842) was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1806 to 1835 and a banker.


Early life[edit]

Dale Park, Sussex (John Preston Neale, 1829)

John Smith was born on 6 September 1767. He was the sixth son of Abel Smith II (1717-1788), a Nottingham banker who was a Member of Parliament for Aldborough, St Ives, and St Germans, and the brother of Robert Smith, 1st Baron Carrington. He lived at Blendon Hall in Kent and finally at Dale Park in Sussex. There is a fine memorial to him in Chichester Cathedral, comprising his recumbent effigy atop a chest tomb set within a gothic-arched niche.[2]


He served as a Tory Member of Parliament for Wendover from 1802 to 1806 and later represented Nottingham from 1806 to 1818, Midhurst from 1818 to 1830, Chichester from 1830 to 1831, and Buckinghamshire from 1831 to 1835. (He was also elected for Midhurst in 1806, but preferred to sit for Nottingham on that occasion. Both Wendover and Midhurst were pocket boroughs controlled by his brother Lord Carrington, but the competitive Nottingham constituency was considerably more prestigious.) Between 1800 and 1831 when pocket boroughs were abolished 12 members of the Smith family sat for the Midhurst parliamentary seat alone. In 1806, Smith served as a Manager of the newly formed London Institution.

Personal life and death[edit]

He married three times. By his second wife, Mary Tucker (1773–1809), he had two sons, John Abel Smith (1802–1871), who succeeded him as MP for Midhurst, and Martin Tucker Smith (1803–1890), who became MP for Wycombe; and he had two daughters by his third wife, Emma Leigh, including the writer, Caroline Leigh Gascoigne. He died on 20 January 1842 at Dale Park when he was accidentally poisoned by his nearly-blind wife, who gave him an overdose of laudanum.[3]

His great-grandson Vivian Smith was created Baron Bicester in 1938.


  1. ^ Debrett's Peerage, 1968, p.223, Smith/Carington, Baron Carrington; p.145, Smith, Baron Bicester, both descendants of the banker Abel Smith II (1717–1788)
  2. ^ See image
  3. ^ History Archived 15 April 2017 at the Wayback Machine, Parks and Gardens, Retrieved 16 April 2017

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Wendover
With: Charles Long
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Nottingham
With: Daniel Parker Coke 1806–1812
The Lord Rancliffe 1812–1818
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Midhurst
With: Samuel Smith 1818–1820
Abel Smith 1820–1830
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Chichester
With: Lord John Lennox
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Buckinghamshire
With: The Marquess of Chandos 1831–1835
George Dashwood 1832–1835
Succeeded by