WILLY, William (?1703-65), of New Park, Devizes, Wilts.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
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1747 - 22 May 1765

Family and Education

b. ?1703, 2nd s. of George Willy, Devizes mercer, of New Park, Devizes.  unm.

Offices Held

Director, E.I. Co. 1746-54.


Willy was a London merchant with a considerable interest at Devizes. In 1754 he was returned unopposed and was classed by Dupplin as an Opposition Whig. Newcastle did not send him his parliamentary whip in October 1761, and on 13 Nov. 1762 classed him as an opponent; and in December Henry Fox listed him among Members favourable to the peace preliminaries. Yet he had voted with the Opposition on 1 Dec., and again voted with them in the two divisions on the peace, 9 and 10 Dec. In the autumn of 1763 Jenkinson marked him as ‘absent’; but his name appears in every minority list on Wilkes and general warrants (November 1763 and February 1764), and on 10 May he was classed by Newcastle as a ‘sure friend’. There is no record of his having spoken in the House. He left over £15,000 in Government stock.1

Willy died 22 May 1765, aged 61.2

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: Mary M. Drummond


  • 1. Bank of England recs.
  • 2. E. Kite, ‘Churches of Devizes’, Wilts. Arch. Mag. ii. 234.