WELBY, Glynne Earle (1806-1875), of Denton Hall, nr. Grantham, Lincs.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1820-1832, ed. D.R. Fisher, 2009
Available from Cambridge University Press



1830 - 1857

Family and Education

b. 26 June 1806, 1st s. of Sir William Earle Welby†, 2nd bt., of Denton and Wilhelmina, da. and h. of William Spry, gov. Barbados. educ. Rugby 1820; Oriel, Oxf. 1824. m. 6 Mar. 1828, Frances, da. of Sir Montague Cholmeley*, 1st bt., 7s. (2 d.v.p.) 4da. (2 d.v.p.). suc. fa. as 3rd bt. 3 Nov. 1852; took additional name of Gregory by royal lic. 5 July 1861. d. 23 Aug. 1875.

Offices Held

Capt. Royal S. Lincs. militia 1847, maj. 1852, lt.-col. 1852-4.

Sheriff, Lincs. 1860-1.


Originally from the area of Wellibi, near Grantham, the Welbys could trace their ancestry back to the Conquest. William Welby† (d. 1657), who was elected as a Parliamentarian but prevented from taking his seat by Cromwell, acquired the manor of Denton, near the Leicestershire border, in 1648. This Member’s grandfather represented Grantham, 1802-6, as did his father, who headed the local Red interest, 1807-20, and his father-in-law Sir Montague Cholmeley, who was returned at a by-election, 1820-6. At the 1830 general election Welby came forward on the family interest in place of his brother-in-law Montague Cholmeley, who had assured him that he intended to stand down. It was rumoured that he would be returned unopposed, but Cholmeley’s decision to offer again forced a contest. During his campaign he declared his principles to be those of his father, citing his ‘attachment to church and state’, but refused to give ‘any pledge as to my future conduct’. He topped the four-day poll and was returned with Cholmeley.1

He was listed by the Wellington ministry among their ‘friends’, but he voted against them in the crucial division on the civil list, 15 Nov. 1830. Yet he divided against the second reading of the Grey ministry’s reform bill, 22 Mar., and for Gascoyne’s wrecking amendment, 19 Apr. 1831. On account of these votes, the local press did not expect him to offer again at the ensuing general election, but he returned to Denton and immediately offered an unrepentant address, 24 Apr.2 Canvassing next day, he told the electors that he ‘could not consent to assist’ in depriving so many voters ‘of their rights and privileges ... for no other fault than that of being poor’. His effigy was burnt in the town, but with the support of the London out-voters he topped the three-day poll. At the declaration he regretted being at odds with some of his constituents on reform, which he believed ‘would endanger our best and dearest institutions, which it had taken centuries to perfect’. A few stones were thrown at him during his chairing but caused no injury.3 Welby was evidently a lax attender in the new Parliament. He voted against the second reading of the reintroduced reform bill, 6 July, its passage, 21 Sept., and against ministers on the Dublin election controversy, 23 Aug. 1831. He paired against the second reading of the revised reform bill, 17 Dec. 1831,4 and voted against the enfranchisement of Tower Hamlets, 28 Feb., and the third reading of the reform bill, 22 Mar. 1832. He divided against ministers on the Russian-Dutch loan, 26 Jan., 12 July. He presented a Grantham petition against the general register bill, 8 Mar. 1832. He is not known to have spoken in debate in this period.

At the 1832 general election he successfully contested Grantham, where he sat as a Conservative until his retirement in 1857, when he was replaced by his eldest son William (1829-98). In compliance with the will of Gregory Gregory of Harlaxton, near Grantham, he added the name of Gregory to his own in 1861. He died at Denton in August 1875. By his will, dated 18 Oct. 1873, he left his wife his leasehold London house in Upper Belgrave Street and an annuity of £1,000. He gave £22,000 to each of his four surviving younger sons and £5,000 to each of his two daughters in addition to their ‘ample’ marriage settlements. The residue and family estates passed to William, his successor in the baronetcy, who was Conservative Member for Grantham, 1857-68, and South Lincolnshire, 1868-84.

Ref Volumes: 1820-1832

Authors: Martin Casey / Philip Salmon


  • 1. Grantham Pollbook (Storr, 1830), passim.; Drakard’s Stamford News, 6 Aug. 1830.
  • 2. Boston Gazette, 26 Apr. 1831.
  • 3. Ibid. 3 May 1831; Grantham Pollbook (Ridge, 1831), passim.
  • 4. The Times, 22 Dec. 1831.