New Romney (UK Parliament constituency)

New Romney
Former Cinque Port constituency
for the House of Commons
Number of members Two

New Romney was a parliamentary constituency in Kent, which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons from 1371 until 1832, when it was abolished by the Great Reform Act.

New Romney was a Cinque Port, which made it technically of different status from a parliamentary borough, but the difference was purely a nominal one. The constituency consisted of the town of New Romney; it had once been a flourishing port but by the 19th century the harbour had been destroyed and there was no maritime trade, the main economic activity being grazing cattle on Romney Marsh. In 1831, the population of the constituency was 978, and the town contained 165 houses.

The right to vote was reserved to the Mayor and Common Council of the town; however, many of these were customs or excise officers, who were disqualified from voting by a change in the law in 1782, so that in the early 19th century there were only 8 voters. The high proportion of voters holding paid government posts before this change in the law meant that New Romney was sometimes considered to be a "treasury borough" (that is, a constituency whose seats were in the gift of the government); but in practice the Dering family, local landowners, were even more influential and could sometimes defy government pressure.

The Dering influence in New Romney seems mainly to have been achieved by letting out property to voters and their relatives at easy rents and without leases. In 1761, for example, the despairing Whig MP, Rose Fuller, explained to Prime Minister Newcastle that he had no chance of re-election since Dering had turned against him, because "several of the governing men are graziers and the Deering and Furnese family have together a very great estate in the neighbouring marsh which is very profitable to and easy for tenants". The reduction in the number of voters naturally made this influence easier, or at least cheaper, to exert.

New Romney was abolished as a constituency by the Reform Act, the town being incorporated into the new Eastern Kent county division.

Members of Parliament


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ParliamentFirst MemberSecond Member
1386 Simon Lunceford John Salerne[1]
1388 (Feb) William Holyngbroke John Salerne [1]
1388 (Sep) William Holyngbroke John Ellis[1]
1390 (Jan) John Ive James Tiece [1]
1390 (Nov) Edmund Huchoun James Tiece [1]
1391 John Ellis John Salerne II [1]
1393 Andrew Colyn Robert Geffe [1]
1395 John GardenerWilliam Child [1]
1397 (Jan) John YonRobert Geffe [1]
1397 (Sep)
1399 John Gardener John Talbot [1]
1401 William ClitheroeJohn Gardener [1]
1402 John Lunceford John Ive [1]
1404 (Jan)
1404 (Oct)
1406 Robert Geffe Thomas Rokeslee [1]
1407 John Roger Brice Scherte [1]
1410 John Adam John Lunceford [1]
1411 William Clitheroe James Lowys [1]
1413 (Feb) William Clitheroe John Adam [1]
1413 (May) William Clitheroe James Lowys [1]
1414 (Apr) Richard Clitheroe John Lunceford [1]
1414 (Nov) William Clitheroe John Maffey [1]
1415 Richard Clitheroe James Lowys [1]
1416 (Mar) Richard ClitheroeJohn Adam [1]
1416 (Oct) Stephen Harry Thomas Sparwe [1]
1417 William Clitheroe James Tiece [1]
1419 Thomas RokesleeThomas Smith [1]
1420 Richard Clitheroe Stephen Harry [1]
1421 (May) Richard Clitheroe James Lowys [1]
1421 (Dec) Thomas SparwePeter Newene [1]
1510 John Holl Thomas Lambard [2]
1512 Sir John ScottClement Baker [2]
1515 Richard StuppenyClement Baker [2]
1523 Robert Parisnot known
1529 Richard Gibson, died
and replaced 1535 by
John Marshall
John Bunting [2]
1536 John Bunting ?John Marshall [2]
1539 William Tadlowe William Garrard [2]
1542 William Tadlowe William Asnothe [2]
1545 not known
1547 John Dering, died
and replaced 1552 by
William Tadlowe
Peter Hayman[2]
1553 (Mar)Simon Padyham not known
1553 (Oct)William Tadlowe ?Sir John Guildford [2]
by 1553 John Cheseman [2]
1554 (Apr) John Cheseman Richard Bunting [2]
1554 (Nov) Gregory HoltonWilliam Oxendon [2]
1555 Richard Baker John Herbert [2]
1558 Simon Padyham ?Thomas Randolph [2]
1559 John Cheseman William Eppes[3]
1562/3 Sir Christopher AlleyneWilliam Eppes [3]
1571 William Eppes Edmund Morrante [3]
1572 William Wilcocks, died
and replaced July 1574 by
William Eppes
Edward Wilcocks [3]
1584 Richard Williams William Southland [3]
1586 William SouthlandRobert Thurbarne [3]
1588 Reginald Scot William Southland [3]
1593 John Mynge Robert Bawle [3]
1597 George Coppyn James Thurbarne [3]
1601 Thomas LakeJohn Mynge[3]
1604-1611 Sir Robert Remington John Plommer
1614Sir Arthur Ingram Robert Wilcock
1621-1622 Sir Peter Manwood Francis Fetherston
1624 Francis FetherstonRichard Godfrey
1625Sir Edmund VerneyRichard Godfrey
1626 Richard GodfreyThomas Brett
1628Thomas GodfreyThomas Brett
1629-1640 No Parliaments summoned


YearFirst memberFirst partySecond memberSecond party
April 1640 ?
November 1640 Thomas Webb [4]Royalist (Sir) Norton Knatchbull [5]Parliamentarian
1641 Richard Browne
December 1648 Browne not recorded as sitting after Pride's Purge Knatchbull excluded in Pride's Purge - seat vacant
1653 New Romney was unrepresented in the Barebones Parliament and the First and Second Parliaments of the Protectorate
January 1659 Lambert Godfrey Sir Robert Honeywood
May 1659 Not represented in the restored Rump
April 1660 Sir Norton Knatchbull John Knatchbull
1661 Sir Charles Berkeley [6]
1665 Hon. Henry Brouncker [7]
1668 Sir Charles Sedley
1679 Paul Barret
1685 Sir William Goulston Thomas Chudleigh
1689 John Brewer James Chadwick
1690 Sir Charles Sedley
1695 Sir William Twysden [8]
1696 Sir Charles Sedley
1701 Edward Goulston
1702 Sir Benjamin Bathurst
1704 Walter Whitfield
1710 Robert Furnese [9] Whig
1713 Viscount Sondes
1722 David Papillon
1727 [10] John Essington
April 1728 Sir Robert Austen Sir Robert Furnese [11] Whig
May 1728 David Papillon [12]
1734 Stephen Bisse
1736 Sir Robert Austen
1741 Henry Furnese Sir Francis Dashwood Tory
1756 Rose Fuller Whig
1761 Sir Edward Dering Tory Thomas Knight
1768 Richard Jackson
1770 John Morton Tory
1774 Sir Edward Dering Tory
April 1784 John Smith
June 1784 Richard Atkinson
1785 John Henniker
1787 Richard Joseph Sullivan
1790 Sir Elijah Impey
1796 John Fordyce John Willett Willett
1802 Manasseh Lopes [13]
1806 William Windham Whig Sir John Perring, 1st Baronet Whig
1807 The Earl of Clonmell Tory Hon. George Ashburnham Tory
1812 Admiral Sir John Duckworth Tory William Mitford Tory
1817 Cholmeley Dering Tory
1818 Andrew Strahan Tory Richard Erle-Drax-Grosvenor
1819 Richard Erle-Drax-Grosvenor Whig
1820 George Hay Dawkins-Pennant Tory
1826 George Tapps Tory
1830 Arthur Hill-Trevor Ultra-Tory[14] William Miles Ultra-Tory[14]/Tory [15]
March 1831 Sir Roger Gresley Tory
April 1831 Sir Edward Cholmeley Dering Tory
1832 Constituency abolished


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 "History of Parliament". History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 2011-11-330. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 "History of Parliament". History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 2011-11-330. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 "History of Parliament". History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 2011-11-330. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  4. Expelled for being a monopolist, January 1641
  5. Created a baronet, August 1641
  6. Created Viscount Fitzhardinge (in the Peerage of Ireland), July 1663
  7. Expelled from the House of Commons on 21 April 1668 for his actions at the Battle of Lowestoft in 1665, when he falsified a signal which prevented the English navy pursuing the defeated Dutch fleet and capitalising on their victory
  8. Twysden was also elected for Appleby, which he chose to represent, and never sat for New Romney
  9. Succeeded to a baronetcy as Sir Robert Furnese, November 1712
  10. At the election of 1727, Essington and Papillon were returned as elected, but on petition they were held not to have been duly elected
  11. Furnese was also elected for Kent, which he chose to represent, and did not sit again for New Romney
  12. Papillon was re-elected in 1734 but had also been elected for Dover, which he chose to represent, and did not sit again for New Romney
  13. Created a baronet, November 1805
  14. 1 2 History of Parliament: DERING, Sir Edward Cholmeley, 8th bt. (1807-1896), of Surrenden Dering, nr. Ashford , Kent
  15. Created a baronet, 1859


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