FOLJAMBE, Francis Ferrand (1750-1814), of Aldwark Hall, Yorks. and Bilby and Osberton, Notts.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer

Constituency

Dates

1 Jan. 1784 - 1784
13 Nov. 1801 - 1807

Family and Education

b. 17 Jan. 1750, 1st s. of John Moore of Kingston-upon-Hull, Yorks. by Ann, da. of Francis Foljambe of Aldwark, Yorks. educ. St. John’s, Camb. 1768. m. (1) 30 June 1774, Mary Arabella (d. 28 Dec. 1790), da. of John Thornhagh (afterwards Hewett) of Osberton, Notts., 5s. 2da.; (2) 12 June 1792, Lady Mary Arabella Lumley, da. of Richard, 4th Earl of Scarbrough, s.p. suc. uncle Thomas Foljambe to Aldwark 1758 and took name of Foljambe by Act of Parliament 1776; fa. 1768.

Offices Held

Sheriff, Yorks. 1787-8; capt. W. Riding yeomanry 1794, maj. 1798, lt.-col. commdt. southern regt. 1803.

Biography

Foljambe’s parliamentary career was blighted by the political crisis of 1784. As Member for Yorkshire with the concurrence of his wife’s uncle Sir George Savile, Earl Fitzwilliam, and the Yorkshire Association, his preference for Fox over Pitt made a martyr of him at the general election (though he withdrew before a poll). Apparently he was easily discouraged, or he would have stood again for the county, at Fitzwilliam’s invitation. Early in 1788, when Wilberforce became dangerously ill, he declined the offer; and again later that year, when the Regency crisis promised a dissolution. He thought little of his prospects. In the same year he jibbed at Beverley and in the following year at his native Hull, when Fitzwilliam pointed to them. He was nevertheless a contributor to Fox’s election expenses at Westminster and was prepared in 1790 to interest himself in the election of coroner for the West Riding for the sake of its possible ‘political consequences’. In this he was, as always, ‘too soon cooled in his pursuits, if the expected success did not immediately attend him’.1

In December 1790 Foljambe declined Fitzwilliam’s offer of an opening at his pocket borough of Higham Ferrers. He did so again in January 1793 when, like Fitzwilliam, he was an alarmist, prepared to support war against revolutionary France. In 1798 he was believed to be Fitzwilliam’s nominee for the vacancy at Malton.2 It was not until 1801 that he was induced to accept a further offer from Fitzwilliam, preferring Higham Ferrers to Peter-borough as the quieter opening, and either to Nottinghamshire which his friends were pressing him to contest.3 In the House he followed Fitzwilliam’s line silently. He was in the minority against the treaty of Amiens, 14 May 1802. On 3 June 1803 he voted for Patten’s censure motion. In March 1804, listed ‘Windham’, he voted for Pitt’s naval motion of the 15th. He joined the minorities on defence that brought down Addington’s ministry, 23 and 25 Apr. He was in opposition to Pitt’s second ministry, voting against the additional force bill, June 1804, and in the majorities against Melville, 8 Apr., 12 June 1805. He supported the Grenville ministry, voting for their repeal of Pitt’s Additional Force Act, 30 Apr. 1806, being reckoned ‘friendly’ to the abolition of the slave trade and supporting Brand’s motion following their dismissal, 9 Apr. 1807.

Foljambe had, before his election in 1806, asked Fitzwilliam to dispose of his seat whenever he wished, as he felt he was ‘a drone in the state’.4 He retired in 1807, but continued to act with Fitzwilliam in Yorkshire. In 1812 he was again approached with an invitation to stand for Nottinghamshire: he declined on account of advancing years, assuring Fitzwilliam that if he were ten years younger he would try.5 In that year and in 1816 his son Francis declined the offer of Fitzwilliam’s interest at East Retford. He died 13 Nov. 1814.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

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