Newport (Isle of Wight) (UK Parliament constituency)

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Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
CountyIsle of Wight
Major settlementsNewport
Number of members1584–1868: Two
1868–1885: One
Replaced byIsle of Wight
Created fromHampshire
Number of membersTwo
Type of constituencyBorough constituency
Replaced byHampshire

Newport was a parliamentary borough located in Newport (Isle of Wight), which was abolished in for the 1885 general election. It was occasionally referred to by the alternative name of Medina.

(Prior to the Great Reform Act of 1832 there was also a separate Newport parliamentary borough in Cornwall.)


The borough was first represented in the parliament of 1295, and returned two members of parliament (MPs) from 1584 to 1868. At the 1868 election the Second Reform Act reduced its representation to a single seat, and under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885 the constituency was abolished altogether with effect from the 1885 general election. Newport's re-enfranchisement in 1584, like that of the other Isle of Wight boroughs (Newtown and Yarmouth) seems to have been at the urging of the new Governor of the island, Sir George Carey, a relative of the Queen. In token of thanks, the borough granted him for life the right to nominate one of the two MPs – which seems to have been the reward he expected and the motive for his petition to the Queen in the first place.

Between 1807 and 1811 its two seats were held by two future Prime Ministers: Arthur Wellesley, later to become the Duke of Wellington (who also found himself elected to two other seats at the same time), and Henry Temple (later Lord Palmerston), who would go on to become one of the United Kingdom's most notable Prime Ministers. Palmerston's late father had been unable to convert his Irish title into a United Kingdom peerage, therefore the young politician was able to enter the Commons. The local patron arranging the deal was Sir Leonard Holmes, who made it a condition that they never visited the borough!

The borough was also represented by two other future Prime Ministers in the 1820s. George Canning was MP for Newport when appointed Prime Minister in 1827; however, under the law as it then stood a minister accepting office automatically vacated his seat and had to stand for re-election to the Commons, and Canning chose to stand at Seaford, a government pocket borough in Sussex, rather than fight Newport again. In the by-election that followed at Newport, the vacancy was filled by the election of the Honourable William Lamb, later 2nd Viscount Melbourne, whose father had also represented the borough in the 1790s. However, Lamb remained MP for Newport for only two weeks before also being elected for Bletchingley, which he preferred to represent.

Before the Great Reform Act of 1832, the right to vote was vested in the Mayor and Corporation (consisting of 11 aldermen and 12 burgesses). For much of the previous century the borough was "managed" for the government by the Holmes family, meaning that ministers could generally secure the election of their favoured candidates, but often only at the expense of considerable "gratuities" to the voters – in 1754, this apparently amounted to a payment of £600 for each candidate. The borough consisted of the parish of Newport and of Castle Hold in the parish of St Nicholas, thereby excluding that part of the town which extended over the boundary into Carisbrooke parish; this gave the borough a population of 4,398 in 1831. The 1832 reforms extended the borough to take in the rest of the town, raising the population to 6,700, though the electorate was still only 421.

Newport's representation was reduced from two members to one by the second Reform Act for the 1868 general election, and abolished altogether in 1885, leaving the town represented as part of the Isle of Wight county constituency.

Members of Parliament[edit]

MPs 1584–1660[edit]

Parliament First member Second member
1584 Sir Ralph Bourchier Edmund Carey[1]
1586 Richard Sutton Richard Hardy[1]
1588 Sir Edmund Carey Richard Hardy[1]
1593 William Cotton Richard Huyshe[1]
1597 William Cotton Richard James[1]
1601 Thomas Crompton Richard James[1]
1604 Richard James John Ashdell
1614 Sir Richard Worsley, 1st Baronet John Searle
1621–1622 Sir Richard Worsley, 1st Baronet died 1621 and replaced by Philip Fleming Sir William Uvedale
1624 Philip Fleming Christopher Brooke, sat for York
and replaced by
John Danvers
1625 Sir Nathaniel Rich Philip Fleming
1626 Christopher Yelverton Philip Fleming
1628–1629 Christopher Yelverton Philip Fleming
1629–1640 No Parliaments summoned
1640 (Apr) The Viscount Falkland Sir Henry Worsley, 2nd Baronet
1640 (Nov) The Viscount Falkland
disabled to sit, Sep 1642
Sir Henry Worsley, 2nd Baronet
1645 Sir Henry Worsley, 2nd Baronet
excluded in Pride's Purge, Dec 1648
William Stephens
1653–1659 Newport was unrepresented in the Barebones and First and Second Protectorate Parliaments
1659 Thomas Boreman (of Broke) Sir Robert Dillington, 2nd Baronet
1659–1660 Sir Henry Worsley, 2nd Baronet William Stephens

MPs 1660–1868[edit]

Election 1st Member 1st Party 2nd Member 2nd Party
1660 Robert Dillington William Oglander[2]
1661 William Glascock
1670 Sir Robert Dillington
February 1679 Admiral Sir Robert Holmes
August 1679 John Leigh
1685 Admiral Sir Robert Holmes Sir William Stephens
January 1689 Sir Robert Dillington
June 1689 Edward Dillington
1690 Admiral Sir Robert Holmes
1692 Brigadier Richard Leveson
November 1695 Brigadier The Lord Cutts Sir Robert Cotton
December 1695 Sir Henry Colt
1698 Major-General The Lord Cutts
1699 Henry Greenhill
January 1701 Major-General The Lord Cutts Samuel Shepheard
March 1701 Henry Greenhill
December 1701 Major-General The Lord Cutts Edward Richards
March 1702 Colonel James Stanhope Whig
July 1702 Major-General The Lord Cutts[3] William Stephens
1707 Sir Tristram Dillington
October 1710 Lieutenant-General John Richmond Webb[4] Tory
December 1710 Lieutenant-General William Seymour
1713 General John Richmond Webb Tory
1715 Anthony Morgan[5]
April 1717 Lieutenant-General James Stanhope Whig
July 1717 Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Tristram Dillington
1721 Thomas Stanwix
March 1722 Earl of March[6] The Lord Whitworth
October 1722 Colonel Charles Cadogan
1726 George Huxley
January 1727 Sir William Willys
August 1727 William Fortescue
1736 The Viscount Boyne
May 1741 Anthony Chute Monoux Cope
July 1747 Captain Bluett Wallop Thomas Lee Dummer
1749 Ralph Jenison
1758 Rear-Admiral Charles Holmes
1762 William Rawlinson Earle
1765 Thomas Dummer
1768 John Eames Hans Sloane
1773 Hon. John St. John
1774 Sir Richard Worsley
1780 Hon. John St. John
1784 Edward Rushworth Captain the Hon. Hugh Seymour-Conway
1786 Hon. John Townshend
January 1790 George Byng
June 1790 The Viscount Palmerston The Viscount Melbourne
1793 Peniston Lamb
May 1796 Jervoise Clarke Jervoise[7] Edward Rushworth[8]
November 1796 William Hamilton Nisbet Andrew Strahan
1800 Sir George Dallas
1802 John Blackburn Richard Gervas Ker
1806 Isaac Corry Major General Sir John Doyle
1807 The Viscount Palmerston Tory Sir Arthur Wellesley Tory
1809 Sir Leonard Worsley-Holmes
1811 Cecil Bisshopp
1812 Richard Worsley-Holmes
1814 John Delgarno
1816 George Watson-Taylor
1818 Charles Duncombe
1825 Hon. John Stuart
1826 George Canning Tory[9] Hon. William Scott Tory[9]
April 1827 Hon. William Lamb[10] Whig
May 1827 Spencer Perceval Tory[9]
1830 Horace Twiss Tory[9]
1831 William Mount Tory[9] James Hope-Vere Tory[9]
1832 John Heywood Hawkins Whig[9][11][12][13] William Henry Ord Whig[9]
1837 William John Blake Whig[9][11][12]
1841 Charles Wykeham Martin Conservative[9] William John Hamilton Conservative[9]
1847 Peelite[14][15] William Plowden Peelite[14][15]
1852 William Biggs Radical[16][17][18] William Nathaniel Massey Radical[17][18]
February 1857 Robert Kennard Conservative
March 1857 Charles Edward Mangles Whig[19] Charles Buxton Whig[19]
1859 Robert Kennard Conservative Philip Lybbe Powys Conservative
1865 Charles Wykeham Martin Liberal
1868 Representation reduced to one member

MPs 1868–1885[edit]

Election Member Party
1868 Charles Wykeham Martin Liberal
1870 Charles Clifford Liberal
1885 constituency abolished

Election results[edit]

Elections in the 1840s[edit]

General election 1841: Newport[20][9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Charles Wykeham Martin 254 26.4
Conservative William John Hamilton 252 26.2
Whig Thomas Gisborne 229 23.8
Whig William John Blake 226 23.5
Majority 23 2.4 N/A
Turnout 485 64.7
Registered electors 750
Conservative gain from Whig Swing
Conservative gain from Whig Swing
General election 1847: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Peelite William Plowden 262 26.1 −0.1
Peelite Charles Wykeham Martin 252 25.1 −1.3
Whig William John Blake 250 25.0 +1.5
Whig Charles Crompton[21][22] 238 23.8
Majority 2 0.2 −2.2
Turnout 501 (est) 77.6 (est) +12.9
Registered electors 646
Peelite gain from Conservative Swing −0.4
Peelite gain from Conservative Swing −1.0

Elections in the 1850s[edit]

General election 1852: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Radical William Biggs 310 27.4 +2.4
Radical William Nathaniel Massey 306 27.1 +3.3
Peelite Charles Wykeham Martin 257 22.7 −2.4
Peelite William Plowden 257 22.7 −3.4
Majority 49 4.3 N/A
Turnout 565 (est) 79.9 (est) +2.3
Registered electors 707
Radical gain from Peelite Swing +2.7
Radical gain from Peelite Swing +3.1

Biggs resigned, causing a by-election.

By-election, 11 February 1857: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Robert Kennard 289 54.3 +8.9
Radical Charles Seely[23][24][25][26][27] 243 45.7 −8.8
Majority 46 8.6 N/A
Turnout 532 81.3 +1.4
Registered electors 654
Conservative gain from Radical Swing +8.9
General election 1857: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Whig Charles Edward Mangles 305 26.8 −0.6
Whig Charles Buxton 294 25.8 −1.3
Conservative Robert Kennard 283 24.8 +2.1
Conservative William Anderson Rose[28] 257 22.6 −0.1
Majority 11 1.0 −3.3
Turnout 570 (est) 87.1 (est) +7.2
Registered electors 654
Whig gain from Radical Swing −0.8
Whig gain from Radical Swing −1.2
General election 1859: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Robert Kennard 319 37.1 +12.3
Conservative Philip Lybbe Powys 312 36.3 +13.7
Liberal Robert Charles[29] 228 26.5 −26.1
Majority 84 9.8 N/A
Turnout 544 (est) 84.0 (est) −3.1
Registered electors 647
Conservative gain from Liberal Swing +12.7
Conservative gain from Liberal Swing +13.4

Elections in the 1860s[edit]

General election 1865: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Charles Wykeham Martin 309 36.5 +10.0
Conservative Robert Kennard 307 36.3 −0.8
Conservative Auberon Herbert 230 27.2 −9.1
Majority 2 0.2 N/A
Turnout 578 (est) 89.8 (est) +5.8
Registered electors 643
Liberal gain from Conservative Swing +10.0
Conservative hold Swing −2.9

Seat reduced to one member

General election 1868: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Charles Wykeham Martin Unopposed
Registered electors 965
Liberal hold

Elections in the 1870s[edit]

Martin's death caused a by-election.

By-election, 23 Nov 1870: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Charles Clifford 437 55.5 N/A
Conservative Henry Martyn Kennard[30] 351 44.5 N/A
Majority 86 10.9 N/A
Turnout 788 81.7 N/A
Registered electors 965
Liberal hold Swing N/A
General election 1874: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Charles Clifford 522 52.4 N/A
Conservative Henry Robert Twyford 475 47.6 N/A
Majority 47 4.7 N/A
Turnout 997 85.5 N/A
Registered electors 1,166
Liberal hold Swing N/A

Elections in the 1880s[edit]

General election 1880: Newport[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Charles Clifford 618 52.5 +0.1
Conservative Henry Robert Twyford 560 47.5 −0.1
Majority 58 4.9 +0.2
Turnout 1,178 86.5 +1.0
Registered electors 1,362
Liberal hold Swing +0.1

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "History of Parliament". History of Parliament trust. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  2. ^ Created a baronet as Sir William Oglander, December 1665
  3. ^ Lieutenant-General from 1703
  4. ^ Webb was also elected for Ludgershall, which he chose to represent, and did not sit for Newport in this Parliament
  5. ^ Morgan was also a candidate for Yarmouth, but the election result there was disputed. He sat for Newport until the Yarmouth election was decided in his favour, then chose to represent Yarmouth for the remainder of the Parliament
  6. ^ March was also elected for Chichester, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Newport
  7. ^ Jervoise was also elected for Yarmouth, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Newport
  8. ^ Rushworth was also elected for Yarmouth, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Newport
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Stooks Smith, Henry. (1973) [1844-1850]. Craig, F. W. S. (ed.). The Parliaments of England (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 153–156. ISBN 0-900178-13-2.
  10. ^ Lamb was elected at a by-election for Bletchingley two weeks after his election for Newport. He chose to represent Bletchingley.
  11. ^ a b Mosse, Richard Bartholomew (1838). The Parliamentary Guide: a concise history of the Members of both Houses, etc. pp. 137, 175. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via Google Books.
  12. ^ a b "John Bull". 14 August 1837. pp. 4–5. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  13. ^ Dickens, Charles (2015) [1843]. Caswall, Edward (ed.). Sketches of Young Ladies, Young Gentleman and Young Couples. Richmond: Alma Books. p. 196. ISBN 978-1-84749-491-7. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via Google Books.
  14. ^ a b "Newport". Portsmouth Times and Naval Gazette. 3 July 1852. p. 4. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  15. ^ a b "The Elections". Aberdeen Press and Journal. 28 July 1852. p. 8. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  16. ^ Wigley, John (1980). The Rise and Fall of the Victorian Sunday. Manchester: Manchester University Press. p. 94. ISBN 0-7190-0794-1. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  17. ^ a b "Newport Borough Election". Hampshire Advertiser. 10 July 1852. p. 7. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  18. ^ a b "Shipping and Mercantile Gazette". 9 July 1852. p. 8. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  19. ^ a b "Glasgow Sentinel". 21 March 1857. p. 2. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  20. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Craig, F. W. S., ed. (1977). British Parliamentary Election Results 1832-1885 (e-book)|format= requires |url= (help) (1st ed.). London: Macmillan Press. pp. 221–222. ISBN 978-1-349-02349-3.
  21. ^ "The General Election". Morning Post. 24 July 1847. p. 3. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  22. ^ "General Election". London Evening Standard. 30 July 1847. pp. 3–4. Retrieved 26 November 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  23. ^ "Election Intelligence". Kentish Independent. 14 February 1857. pp. 3–4. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  24. ^ Dod, Charles Roger; Dod, Robert Phipps (1847). Dod's Parliamentary Companion, Volume 15. Dod's Parliamentary Companion. p. 232. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  25. ^ Hill, Francis (1974). Victorian Lincoln. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 17, 74. ISBN 0-521-20334-1. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  26. ^ Seely, Bob. "About Bob Seely". Bob Seely MP. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  27. ^ "Pratt to Seely". It's About Lincoln. Angelic Aromas. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  28. ^ "Newport Election". Hampshire Advertiser. 4 April 1857. pp. 1, 2, 4, 5, 8. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  29. ^ "Newport (Isle of Wight)". Morning Advertiser. 26 April 1859. p. 2. Retrieved 10 June 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  30. ^ "Press Association Telegrams". Aberdeen Press and Journal. 2 November 1870. p. 5. Retrieved 11 January 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  • Robert Beatson, A Chronological Register of Both Houses of Parliament (London: Longman, Hurst, Res & Orme, 1807) [1]
  • D Brunton & D H Pennington, "Members of the Long Parliament" (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1954)
  • Michael Brock, The Great Reform Act (London: Hutchinson, 1973)
  • F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1832–1885 (2nd Ed) (Aldershot: Parliamentary Research Services, 1989)
  • D Englefield, J Seaton & I White, Facts About the British Prime Ministers (London: Mansell, 1995)
  • Lewis Namier, The Structure of Politics at the Accession of George III (2nd edition, London: Macmillan, 1961)
  • J E Neale, The Elizabethan House of Commons (London: Jonathan Cape, 1949)
  • J Holladay Philbin, Parliamentary Representation 1832 – England and Wales (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1965)
  • Henry Stooks Smith, "The Parliaments of England from 1715 to 1847" (2nd edition, edited by FWS Craig – Chichester: Parliamentary Reference Publications, 1973)
  • Robert Walcott, English Politics in the Early Eighteenth Century (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1956)
  • Frederic A Youngs, Jr, Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, Volume I (London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society, 1979)
  • Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "N" (part 1)