BOWES, George (1701-60), of Streatlam Castle, co. Dur.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1727 - 17 Sept. 1760

Family and Education

b. 21 Aug. 1701, 3rd s. of Sir William Bowes, M.P., of Streatlam Castle by Elizabeth, da. and h. of Sir Francis Blakiston, 3rd Bt., of Gibside, co. Dur. educ. G. Inn 1719. m. (1) Oct. 1729, Eleanor (d.14 Dec.1742), da. and h. of Hon. Thomas Verney (s. of George, 12th Lord Willoughby de Broke), s.p.; (2) 13 June 1743, Mary, da. and h. of Edward Gilbert of Paulswalden, Herts., 1da. who m. (1) John Lyon, 7th Earl of Strathmore [S], and (2) Andrew Robinson Stoney, afterwards Bowes. suc. bro. 1722.

Offices Held

Mayor, Durham 1739.


Bowes was one of the largest coal owners in Durham, and with the Wortleys and Liddells founded the ‘Grand Alliance’, a cartel which dominated the north country coal trade throughout the century.1

In Parliament the interests of the coal trade, vital to county Durham, were with him a dominant concern. Returned unopposed in 1754, he was classed by Dupplin as an Opposition Whig. During the debates on the Oxfordshire election petitions he spoke on the Tory side;2 and at least one other speech of his in this Parliament is reported: 3 Mar. 1756, on the plate bill.3

He died 17 Sept. 1760, leaving a fortune estimated at £600,000.

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: John Brooke


  • 1. E. Hughes, N. Country Life in 18th Cent. 235-6.
  • 2. R. J. Robson, Oxfordshire Election of 1754, p. 139.
  • 3. Newdigate ms. B2549.