ANDERSON PELHAM, Hon. Charles (1781-1846), of Manby, Lincs. and Appuldurcombe, I.o.W

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



18 July 1803 - 1807
1807 - 22 Sept. 1823

Family and Education

b. 8 Aug. 1781, 1st s. of Charles Anderson Pelham†, 1st Bar. Yarborough, and Sophia, da. and h. of George René Aufrere† of Chelsea, Mdx. educ. Eton 1793; Trinity Coll. Camb. 1799; continental tour 1801-3. m. 11 Aug. 1806, Henrietta Anna Maria Charlotte, da. of Hon. John Simpson† of Babworth Hall, Notts. and h. of her mother, his 1st w. Henrietta Frances, da. and event. h. of Sir Thomas Worsley, 6th bt., of Appuldurcombe, 2s. 2da. (1 d.v.p.). suc. fa. as 2nd Bar. Yarborough 22 Sept. 1823; cr. earl of Yarborough 30 Jan. 1837. d. 5 Sept. 1846.

Offices Held

Master, Brocklesby hounds 1816-d.; recorder, Grimsby 1823-32, Newport, I.o.W. 1825-32.

Lt.-col. 2nd regt. N. Lincs. vols. 1803; capt. N. Wold yeomanry 1805; lt.-col. N. Lincs. yeoman cav. 1831; v.-adm. Hants and I.o.W. 1831.


Anderson Pelham, one of the Whig alarmists in the emergency session of 1819, offered again on his family interest for Lincolnshire at the 1820 general election. Rumours of another contest came to nothing and he was returned unopposed.1 A very lax attender, denounced as ‘an idle county Member’ by a radical commentary of 1823,2 when present he continued to act with the opposition to the Liverpool ministry on most major issues, including economy, retrenchment and reduced taxation. He cast no known votes on Catholic relief. He was granted three weeks’ leave, 28 June 1820. He presented a petition in support of Queen Caroline, 8 Feb., and contended that as a result of her prosecution ‘a large majority of the people wished for a change of ministers and of measures’, 13 Feb. 1821.3 He presented Lincolnshire petitions for relief from agricultural distress, 19 Mar. 1821, 11 Feb. 1822.4 His pledge that day to ‘support all measures for retrenchment and economy calculated to relieve the farmers’ did nothing to improve his poor attendance, and at a county meeting for another petition for relief, 29 Mar., he was abused for failing to take a more active line. In reply, he argued that Members

ought not to go into Parliament with wild and visionary notions on such subjects ... He was not an advocate for doing away with all places and pensions indiscriminately ... but he would abolish all useless ones ... He should give his vote for every reasonable retrenchment. There might, however, be motions brought forward which, if carried, would be injurious to our honour and national justice: such motions he could not honourably sanction. He would, however, do all in his power to keep a firm hold on the country’s purse strings, the best means of inducing ministers to be earnest in retrenchment.

He presented the petition, 29 Apr.5 On 25 Apr. 1822 he presented another for parliamentary reform, which he had opposed in 1817, but declined to commit himself to support Lord John Russell’s motion on the matter, for which he voted later that day. In January 1823 he refused to support a Lincoln reform meeting promoted by the independent Whig Sir Robert Heron* in conjunction with the revived reform movement in Yorkshire, though he attended a county meeting on the issue, 26 Mar., when Major Cartwright moved a program of universal suffrage, annual parliaments and the ballot as an alternative to Heron’s moderate proposals. Anderson Pelham denounced this radical scheme as ‘destructive of the constitution’, but declared his support for some measure of reform and his desire to see more ‘men of property’ in the Commons.6 He presented the petition, 22 Apr., and voted for Russell’s reform motion, 24 Apr., but Heron, still resentful of his refusal to abet his own bid for the second county seat in 1818, wrote him off as ‘an unwilling convert to moderate reform’ who was ‘without political principle’ and merely ‘professes to be a Whig’.7 He presented a petition against the slave trade, 5 May.8 It is not clear whether it was he or John Cressett Pelham who had something to say in the debate on the Dublin riot inquiry, 26 May. His last recorded vote was in censure of the lord advocate’s dealings with the Scottish press, 3 June 1823. That September he succeeded to his father’s peerage.

At the ensuing county by-election he was alleged to have broken a promise to back the popular Sir Robert Sheffield and instead supported Sir William Amcotts Ingilby*, who would be easier to dislodge when his elder son came of age.9 (The young Anderson Pelham was returned for the county in 1831, but it was the Tory Chaplin whom he replaced.) Since 1806 Anderson Pelham had returned a Member for Newtown on the strength of his wife’s inheritance. On the death of the ministerialist Sir Leonard Worsley Holmes* in 1825 he acquired more influence in the Isle of Wight as one of the three trustees appointed to administer Holmes’s property there during his daughter’s minority. All the Members returned for the Holmes’s boroughs of Newport and Yarmouth between 1826 and 1830 were supporters of the Liverpool, Canning and Wellington ministries, but in 1831 it was said that Anderson Pelham, the most influential of the trustees, ‘by a very questionable piece of political morality’ sold the seats to the Grey government for £20,000 and the promise of an earldom.10 Three of the four Members in question voted for the ministerial reform bill, but Anderson Pelham was not promoted in the peerage until 1837. He subsequently opposed the bulk of his party on the free trade question. Famed for his princely hospitality as commodore of the Royal Yacht Squadron, he died on board his vessel Kestrel off Portugal, 5 Sept. 1846. Lavish displays of public mourning attended the progress of his remains via Cowes and Grimsby for burial in the mausoleum at Brocklesby.11

Ref Volumes: 1820-1832

Authors: David R. Fisher / Philip Salmon


  • 1. Lincoln, Rutland and Stamford Mercury, 24 Mar. 1820.
  • 2. Black Bk. (1823), 183.
  • 3. The Times, 9 Feb. 1821.
  • 4. Ibid. 20 Mar. 1821, 12 Feb. 1822.
  • 5. Ibid. 6, 30 Apr. 1822.
  • 6. Ibid. 9 Jan., 28 Mar. 1823.
  • 7. Heron, Notes, 149.
  • 8. The Times, 6 May 1823.
  • 9. Suff. RO (Ipswich), Barne mss HA53/359/88, E. Boucherett to M. Barne, 24 Dec. 1823; Heron, 149.
  • 10. Three Diaries, 90; Greville Mems. ii. 143-4.
  • 11. Gent. Mag. (1846), ii. 532; (1847), ii. 651.