TAPPS, George William (1795-1842), of Hinton Admiral, Christchurch, Hants and 4 Stratford Place, Oxford Street, Mdx.
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Family and Educationb. 24 May 1795, o.s. of Sir George Ivison Tapps, 1st bt., of Hinton Admiral and Sarah, da. of Barrington Buggin, merchant, of 16 Harpur Street, Red Lion Square, Mdx. educ. Ealing (Mr. Goodenough); Trinity Coll. Camb. 1812; L. Inn 1815, called 1821. m. 26 Sept. 1825, Clara, da. of Augustus Eliott Fuller† of Rose Hill and Ashdown House, Suss., 3s. 1da. suc. fa. as 2nd bt. 15 Mar. 1835 and took additional name of Gervis by royal lic. 3 Dec. 1835. d. 26 Oct. 1842.
Tapps was a direct descendant of Richard Tapps, who married Catherine, the last surviving coheiress of George Gervis (1635-1718) of Islington. On the death without issue in 1751 of her eldest sister Lydia, the widow of Sir Peter Mews (?1672-1726), the latter’s property at Hinton Admiral passed to the Tapps family. This Member’s grandfather George Gervis Tapps bought property at Northchurch, Berkhampstead, from the Duncombes.1 The implication of the phraseology of his will, made two months before his death in May 1774, was that the chief beneficiary George Ivison Tapps and his sister Jane Ivison Tapps were not his legitimate children, though they were living with and maintained by him. The will was left unadministered by its executors and on 4 July 1795 probate was granted to George Ivison Tapps, who had received a baronetcy in 1791 and served as sheriff of Hampshire, 1793-4.2 He and his only son George William, who was bred to the bar but seems not to have practised, showed an interest in a seat for Christchurch on a vacancy in January 1818, but Lord Malmesbury dismissed their chances: ‘They are not much liked. Sir George is a very narrow minded penurious fellow’.3 Nothing came of it. At the general election of 1826 George William Tapps was returned for New Romney on the Dering interest. He made no mark in the House, where his only known votes were against Catholic relief, 12 May 1828, and emancipation, 6, 18, 30 Mar. 1829; this after being listed among the ‘doubtful’ on the issue by Planta, the Wellington ministry’s patronage secretary. He is not known to have spoken in debate in this period and he gave up his seat at the 1830 dissolution.
Tapps came in unopposed as a Conservative for the greatly enlarged constituency of Christchurch in 1832 and 1835, when he succeeded to the baronetcy and, in accordance with his father’s wish, took the additional name of Gervis.4 He played a part in the urban development of eastern Bournemouth, and his marriage added property in Sussex to his holdings.5 He died in October 1842, having directed in his will of 22 Jan. 1835 that ‘one artery in each of my arms and legs shall be opened before my burial’. His personalty was sworn under £35,000.6 On the death of his brother-in-law Owen John Augustus Fuller Meyrick in 1876 the Meyrick estates at Bodorgan, Anglesey, passed to Tapps’s eldest son and successor Sir George Eliott Meyrick Tapps Gervis (1827-96), who took the further additional name of Meyrick.7
Ref Volumes: 1820-1832
Author: David R. Fisher
- 1. CB, v. 278.
- 2. PROB 11/998/206.
- 3. Hants RO, Malmesbury mss, Malmesbury to Fitzharris, 17, 19 Jan. 1818.
- 4. R. Lavender, From Pocket Borough to Parliamentary Democracy, 14-15; PROB 11/1851/523.
- 5. VCH Hants, v. 81, 84, 134.
- 6. PROB 11/1970/747; IR26/1610/785.
- 7. E.H. Fellowes, Descendants of Richard Garth, 3.