Sir Richard Neave, 1st Baronet

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Sir Richard Neave, 1st Baronet (22 November 1731 – 28 January 1814) was a British merchant and a Governor of the Bank of England.


Neave was the son of James Neave and Susanna Trueman.[1] He developed considerable interests in the West Indies and the Americas and was chairman at various times of the Ramsgate Harbour Trust, the Society of West Indian Merchants and the London Dock Company, as well as a director of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Neave was a friend of George Read of Delaware who wrote to warn him in 1765 that the British government's attempts to tax the colonies without giving them direct representation in Parliament would lead to independence.[2]

Neave lived in Bower House in Havering-atte-Bower but sought to elevate himself from merchant to country gentleman and purchased Dagnam Park in 1772. Neave had the original Dagnams demolished, probably between 1772 and 1776 and replaced by a red-brick Georgian house nine bays wide by four deep with a curved central three-bay projection to the south front.[3] He was a director of the Bank of England for 48 years, made Deputy Governor in 1781 and Governor from 1783 to 1785. In 1794 he was appointed High Sheriff of Essex. He was a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and in 1785 elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.[4] He was created a baronet on May 13, 1795.


Neave married Frances Bristow in 1761. He and his wife were painted, in a double portrait, by Thomas Gainsborough around 1765 (private collection). Their daughter Frances married Governor of the Bank of EnglandBeeston Long; in 1806, both Neave and Long served as Vice-presidents of the London Institution.

The second daughter Catherine Mary married Henry Howard.[5]


Government offices
Preceded by
William Ewer
Governor of the Bank of England
1783 - 1785
Succeeded by
George Peters
Baronetage of Great Britain
Preceded by
(new creation)
(Dagnam Park)
Succeeded by
Sir Thomas Neave, 2nd Bt
Honorary titles
Preceded by
High Sheriff of Essex
Succeeded by
John Hanson