GOUGH, Sir Henry (1649-1724), of Perry Hall, Staffs.
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Family and Education
b. 3 Jan. 1649, 1st s. of John Gough of Oldfallings by 2nd w. Bridget, da. of Sir John Astley of Wood Eaton, Oxon.; bro. of Sir Richard Gough. educ. Christ Church, Oxf. 1666; M. Temple 1667. m. 1668, Mary, da. of Sir Edward Littleton, 2nd Bt., of Pillaton, Hall, Staffs., 10s. 5da. suc. fa. 1665; kntd. 7 Apr. 1678.1
J.p. Staffs. 1671-Mar. 1688, Oct. 1688-96, 1700-d., sheriff 1671-2, commr. for assessment 1673-80, 1689-90, recusants 1675.
Gough’s grandfather ‘a great usurer’ of Welsh extraction, laid the foundation of the family estates in Staffordshire. His father served under Prince Rupert in the siege of Lichfield but held no command, and the county committee appear to have accepted that he acted by force majeure.2
In 1685 Gough told Lord Weymouth (Thomas Thynne I) that he was willing to spend up to £200 against the Whig John Swinfen at Tamworth, and he was returned unopposed, the first of the family to sit. In James II’s Parliament he was named only to the committee for expiring laws. He was appointed a governor of King Edward VI’s grammar school, Birmingham, under the new charter. But to the questions on the repeal of the Test Act and Penal Laws he replied that he could not determine his actions in advance if he were to be elected to Parliament, and could not bind himself to support any particular candidate.3
Gough had acquired a good interest among the ‘commonalty’ at Tamworth, and was re-elected in 1689. An inactive Member of the Convention, he voted to agree with the Lords that the throne was not vacant, and was named to nine committees, of which the most important was for restoring corporations (2 May). After the recess he was added to the committee of elections and privileges, and probably brought in a petition to confirm the school charter, for he was the first Member appointed to the committee to consider it. He afterwards voted consistently with the Tories, refusing to sign the Association of 1696. He died on 24 Jan. 1724, and was buried at Bushbury. A younger son, Henry, sat for Bramber as a government supporter from 1734 to 1751.4