COVENTRY, George William, Visct. Deerhurst (1722-1809), of Croome Court, Worcs.
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Family and Education
b. 26 Apr. 1722, 2nd but 1st surv. s. of William Coventry, 5th Earl of Coventry, and bro. of Thomas Henry, Visct. Deerhurst and Hon. John Bulkeley Coventry. educ. Winchester 1730-7; Univ. Coll. Oxf. 1737. m. (1) 5 Mar. 1752, Mary (d. 30 Sept. 1760), da. of John Gunning of Castle Coote, co. Roscommon, 1s. 2da.; (2) 27 Sept. 1764, Barbara, da. of John St. John, 11th Baron St. John of Bletso, 2s. 1da. suc. fa. as 6th Earl 18 Mar. 1751.
Ld. lt. Worcs. 1751-1808, ld. of the bedchamber to George II and George III 1752-70.
Lord Deerhurst, godson of the Duke of Newcastle,1 was brought into Parliament on his father’s interest at Bridport after his brother’s death in 1744. He added his ‘feeble vote to a minority of 82’ when a motion to inquire into the causes of the rebellion in Scotland was defeated on 28 Oct. 1745; a week later, though ‘sorry for the opposition’ to raising new regiments, he ‘could not but disapprove of a measure which appeared to carry too much attention to private and personal interests’; and in April 1746, listed as ‘doubtful’, he voted against the Government on the Hanoverians. In the December following Lord Hartington reported that ‘Lord Deerhurst was against us both days [on deficiencies of the civil list], but else the minority consisted only of Lord Strange at the head of the rank Tories’. In 1747, finding himself opposed by a rich West Indian, J. F. Pinney, he transferred to Worcestershire and was classed as ‘against’. Nevertheless, he was mentioned as one of 30 ‘courtiers’ who voted with the Opposition on a clause of the mutiny bill in January 1750;2 while the 2nd Lord Egmont, in his electoral survey, c.1749-50, describes him as ‘better inclined to the present set than to us’. On the day of his father’s death he wrote to Newcastle that ‘my real endeavours to support the Government at all times in Worcestershire in my private capacity I hope gives me some pretensions to solicit the honour of presiding over it’.3 The post of lord lieutenant was duly given to him together with a place at court. He died 3 Sept. 1809.