1830 United Kingdom general election
The 1830 United Kingdom general election was triggered by the death of King George IV and produced the first parliament of the reign of his successor, William IV. Fought in the aftermath of the Swing Riots, it saw. Polling took place in July and August and the Tories won a plurality over the Whigs, but division among Tory MPs allowed Earl Grey to form an effective government and take the question of electoral reform to the country the following year; the eighth United Kingdom Parliament was dissolved on 24 July 1830. The new Parliament was summoned to meet on 14 September 1830, for a maximum seven-year term from that date; the maximum term could be and was curtailed, by the monarch dissolving the Parliament, before its term expired. This election was the first since 1708 to cause the collapse of the government; the Tory leader, at the time of the 1830 election, was the Duke of Wellington. He had been Prime Minister since 1828; the previous Parliament had been unstable. During the 1826–30 Parliament, there had been four Tory prime ministers.
The Earl of Liverpool, Prime Minister since 1812, was forced by ill health to retire in 1827. George Canning, Leader of the House of Commons under Liverpool, became Prime Minister in early 1827; the High Tories, led by the Duke of Wellington and Robert Peel, refused to serve in his government. Canning invited a section of the Whigs, including Lansdowne to join a coalition ministry with the Canningite faction of the Tories. Other Whigs, like Earl Grey, remained in opposition; some Whigs like Viscount Althorp adopted a neutral attitude to the government. After Canning's death in August 1827, the premiership passed to Viscount Goderich for a few more months, until Wellington took over on 22 January 1828; those Whigs, in both Canning's and Goderich's governments returned to the Opposition. For a short while a band of MPs and peers, supporters of Canning were in included in Wellington's government but left on the issue of the re-distribution of seats from the corrupt parliamentary borough of East Retford in May 1828.
There was a further split in the Tory administration in 1829 on the issue of Catholic emancipation when Daniel O'Connell and his Catholic Association won a parliamentary seat. Barred from taking his seat in the House of Commons because he was a Catholic, Wellington's government was forced to bring about a change but led to another split in their party—this time with the creation of the'Ultra-Tory' group led by Edward Knatchbull MP and supported by a number of influential peers in the House of Lords. There had not been a predominantly Whig administration since the Ministry of all the Talents in 1806–07; the Whig Party had had weak leadership in the House of Commons, for many years. However, during the 1826–30 Parliament the situation improved. At the time of the general election, the Earl Grey was the leading figure amongst the Whig peers; however Grey had given up the formal leadership in 1824. The Marquess of Lansdowne had not taken up the title; the animosity which King George IV had to Earl Grey had barred him from government, but in the new reign his chances of office had improved.
There had been no official Leader of the Opposition in the House of Commons since 1821, but in 1830 the Whigs selected Viscount Althorp to fill the vacancy. In Irish politics, Daniel O'Connell and his Catholic Association had succeeded in obtaining Catholic emancipation in 1829; however this measure was accompanied with an increase in the property qualification for Irish county voters, from a £2 freehold to a £20 one. For the first time since the penal laws were enacted in the seventeenth century Catholics in Ireland could serve in Parliament. With emancipation achieved, O'Connell was free to pursue his other aim with a campaign for repeal of the Act of Union. At this period there was not one election day. After receiving a writ for the election to be held, the local returning officer fixed the election timetable for the particular constituency or constituencies he was concerned with. Polling in seats with contested elections could continue for many days; the general election took place between the first contest on 29 July and the last contest on 1 September 1830.
Monmouthshire is included in Wales in these tables. Sources for this period may include the county in England. Table 1: Constituencies and MPs, by type and country Table 2: Number of seats per constituency, by type and country United Kingdom general elections List of MPs elected in the United Kingdom general election, 1830 List of MPs elected in the United Kingdom general election, 1832 British Electoral Facts 1832–1999, compiled and edited by Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher. Source: Dates of Elections – Footnote to Table 5.02 British Historical Facts 1760–1830, by Chris Cook and John Stevenson. Source: Types of constituencies – Great Britain His Majesty's Opposition 1714–1830, by Archibald S. Foord Parliamentary Election Results in Ireland 1801–1922, edited by B. M. Walker. Source: Types of constituencies – Ireland
Reform Act 1832
The Representation of the People Act 1832 was an Act of Parliament of the United Kingdom that introduced wide-ranging changes to the electoral system of England and Wales. According to its preamble, the Act was designed to "take effectual Measures for correcting divers Abuses that have long prevailed in the Choice of Members to serve in the Commons House of Parliament". Before the reform, most members nominally represented boroughs; the number of electors in a borough varied from a dozen or so up to 12,000. The selection of MPs was controlled by one powerful patron: for example Charles Howard, 11th Duke of Norfolk, controlled eleven boroughs. Criteria for qualification for the franchise varied among boroughs, from the requirement to own land, to living in a house with a hearth sufficient to boil a pot. There had been calls for reform long without success; the Act that succeeded was proposed by the Whigs, led by Prime Minister Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey. It met with significant opposition from the Pittite factions in Parliament, who had long governed the country.
The bill was passed as a result of public pressure. The Act granted seats in the House of Commons to large cities that had sprung up during the Industrial Revolution, removed seats from the "rotten boroughs": those with small electorates and dominated by a wealthy patron; the Act increased the electorate from about 400,000 to 650,000, making about one in five adult males eligible to vote. The full title is An Act to amend the representation of the people in Wales, its formal short title and citation is "Representation of the People Act 1832". The Act applied only in Wales; the separate Scottish Reform Act 1832 was revolutionary, enlarging the electorate by a factor of 1300% from 5000 to 65,000. After the Acts of Union 1800 became law on 1 January 1801, the unreformed House of Commons was composed of 658 members, of whom 513 represented England and Wales. There were two types of constituencies. County members were supposed to represent landholders, while borough members were supposed to represent the mercantile and trading interests of the kingdom.
Counties were historical national subdivisions established between the 16th centuries. They were not parliamentary constituencies; the members of Parliament chosen by the counties were known as Knights of the Shire. In Wales each county elected one member, while in England each county elected two members until 1826, when Yorkshire's representation was increased to four, following the disenfranchisement of the Cornish borough of Grampound. Parliamentary boroughs in England ranged in size from small hamlets to large cities because they had evolved haphazardly; the earliest boroughs were chosen in the Middle Ages by county sheriffs, a village might be deemed a borough. Many of these early boroughs were substantial settlements at the time of their original enfranchisement, but went into decline, by the early 19th century some only had a few electors, but still elected two MPs. In centuries the reigning monarch decided which settlements to enfranchise; the monarchs seem to have done so capriciously with little regard for the merits of the place they were enfranchising.
Of the 70 English boroughs that Tudor monarchs enfranchised, 31 were disenfranchised. The parliamentarians of the 17th century compounded the inconsistencies by re-enfranchising 15 boroughs whose representation had lapsed for centuries, seven of which were disenfranchised by the Reform Act. After Newark was enfranchised in 1661, no additional boroughs were enfranchised, the unfair system remained unchanged until the Reform Act of 1832. Grampound's disenfranchisement in 1821 was the sole exception. Most English boroughs elected two MPs; the City of London and the joint borough of Weymouth and Melcombe Regis each elected four members. The Welsh boroughs each returned a single member. Statutes passed in 1430 and 1432, during the reign of Henry VI, standardised property qualifications for county voters. Under these Acts, all owners of freehold property or land worth at least forty shillings in a particular county were entitled to vote in that county; this requirement, known as the forty shilling freehold, was never adjusted for inflation.
The franchise was restricted to males by custom rather than statute. The vast majority of people were not entitled to vote. Furthermore, the sizes of the individual county constituencies varied significantly; the smallest counties and Anglesey, had fewer than 1,000 voters each, while the largest county, had more than 20,000. Those who owned property in multiple constituencies could vote multiple times. In boroughs the franchise was far more varied. There were broadly six types of parliamenta
Whigs (British political party)
The Whigs were a political faction and a political party in the parliaments of England, Great Britain and the United Kingdom. Between the 1680s and 1850s, they contested power with the Tories; the Whigs' origin lay in constitutional opposition to absolute monarchy. The Whigs played a central role in the Glorious Revolution of 1688 and were the standing enemies of the Stuart kings and pretenders, who were Roman Catholic; the Whigs took full control of the government in 1715 and remained dominant until King George III, coming to the throne in 1760, allowed Tories back in. The Whig Supremacy was enabled by the Hanoverian succession of George I in 1714 and the failed Jacobite rising of 1715 by Tory rebels; the Whigs purged the Tories from all major positions in government, the army, the Church of England, the legal profession and local offices. The Party's hold on power was so strong and durable, historians call the period from 1714 to 1783 the age of the Whig Oligarchy; the first great leader of the Whigs was Robert Walpole, who maintained control of the government through the period 1721–1742 and whose protégé Henry Pelham led from 1743 to 1754.
Both parties began as loose groupings or tendencies, but became quite formal by 1784 with the ascension of Charles James Fox as the leader of a reconstituted Whig Party, arrayed against the governing party of the new Tories under William Pitt the Younger. Both parties were founded on rich politicians more than on popular votes, there were elections to the House of Commons, but a small number of men controlled most of the voters; the Whig Party evolved during the 18th century. The Whig tendency supported the great aristocratic families, the Protestant Hanoverian succession and toleration for nonconformist Protestants, while some Tories supported the exiled Stuart royal family's claim to the throne and all Tories supported the established Church of England and the gentry. On, the Whigs drew support from the emerging industrial interests and wealthy merchants, while the Tories drew support from the landed interests and the royal family. However, by the first half of the 19th century the Whig political programme came to encompass not only the supremacy of parliament over the monarch and support for free trade, but Catholic emancipation, the abolition of slavery and expansion of the franchise.
The 19th century Whig support for Catholic emancipation was a complete reversal of the party's historic anti-Catholic position at its late 17th century origin. The term "Whig" was short for "whiggamor", a term meaning "cattle driver" used to describe western Scots who came to Leith for corn. In the reign of Charles I the term was used during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms to refer derisively to a radical faction of the Scottish Covenanters who called themselves the "Kirk Party", it was applied to Scottish Presbyterian rebels who were against the King's Episcopalian order in Scotland. The term "Whig" entered English political discourse during the Exclusion Bill crisis of 1678–1681 when there was controversy about whether or not King Charles II's brother, should be allowed to succeed to the throne on Charles's death. "Whig" was a term of abuse applied to those who wanted to exclude James on the grounds that he was a Roman Catholic. The fervent Tory Samuel Johnson joked that "the first Whig was the Devil".
Under Lord Shaftesbury's leadership, the Whigs in the Parliament of England wished to exclude the Duke of York from the throne due to his Roman Catholicism, his favouring of monarchical absolutism, his connections to France. They believed the heir presumptive, if allowed to inherit the throne, would endanger the Protestant religion and property; the first Exclusion Bill was supported by a substantial majority on its second reading in May 1679. In response, King Charles prorogued Parliament and dissolved it, but the subsequent elections in August and September saw the Whigs' strength increase; this new parliament did not meet for thirteen months, because Charles wanted to give passions a chance to die down. When it met in October 1680, an Exclusion Bill was introduced and passed in the Commons without major resistance, but was rejected in the Lords. Charles dissolved Parliament in January 1681, but the Whigs did not suffer serious losses in the ensuing election; the next Parliament first met in March at Oxford, but Charles dissolved it after only a few days, when he made an appeal to the country against the Whigs and determined to rule without Parliament.
In February, Charles had made a deal with the French King Louis XIV, who promised to support him against the Whigs. Without Parliament, the Whigs crumbled due to government repression following the discovery of the Rye House Plot; the Whig peers, the Earl of Melville, the Earl of Leven, Lord Shaftesbury, Charles II's illegitimate son the Duke of Monmouth, being implicated, fled to and regrouped in the United Provinces. Algernon Sidney, Sir Thomas Armstrong and William Russell, Lord Russell, were executed for treason; the Earl of Essex committed suicide in the Tower of London over his arrest for treason, whilst Lord Grey of Werke escaped from the Tower. After the Glorious Revolution of 1688, Queen Mary II and King William III governed with both Whigs and Tories, despite the fact that many of the Tories still supported the deposed Roman Catholic James II. William saw that the Tories were friendlier to royal authority than the Whigs and he employed both groups in his government, his early ministry was Tory, but the government came to be dominated by the so-called Junto Whig
Tories (British political party)
The Tories were members of two political parties which existed sequentially in the Kingdom of England, the Kingdom of Great Britain and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from the 17th to the early 19th centuries. The first Tories emerged in 1678 in England, when they opposed the Whig-supported Exclusion Bill which set out to disinherit the heir presumptive James, Duke of York, who became James II of England and VII of Scotland; this party ceased to exist as an organised political entity in the early 1760s, although it was used as a term of self-description by some political writers. A few decades a new Tory party would rise to establish a hold on government between 1783 and 1830, with William Pitt the Younger followed by Robert Jenkinson, 2nd Earl of Liverpool; the Earl of Liverpool was succeeded by fellow Tory Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, whose term included the Catholic Emancipation, which occurred due to the election of Daniel O'Connell as a Catholic MP from Ireland.
When the Whigs subsequently regained control, the Representation of the People Act 1832 removed the rotten boroughs, many of which were controlled by Tories. In the following general election, the Tory ranks were reduced to 180 MPs. Under the leadership of Robert Peel, the Tamworth Manifesto was issued, which began to transform the Tories into the Conservative Party. However, Peel lost many of his supporters by repealing the Corn Laws, causing the party to break apart. One faction, led by Edward Smith-Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby and Benjamin Disraeli, survived to become the modern Conservative Party, whose members are still referred to as Tories as they still follow and promote the ideology of Toryism; the first Tory party could trace its principles and politics, though not its organization, to the English Civil War which divided England between the Royalist supporters of King Charles I and the supporters of the Long Parliament upon which the King had declared war. This action resulted from this parliament not allowing him to levy taxes without yielding to its terms.
In the beginning of the Long Parliament, the King's supporters were few, the Parliament pursued a course of reform of previous abuses. The increasing radicalism of the Parliamentary majority, estranged many reformers in the Parliament itself and drove them to make common cause with the King; the King's party thus comprised a mixture of supporters of royal autocracy and of those Parliamentarians who felt that the Long Parliament had gone too far in attempting to gain executive power for itself and, more in undermining the episcopalian government of the Church of England, felt to be a primary support of royal government. By the end of the 1640s, the radical Parliamentary programme had become clear: reduction of the King to a powerless figurehead and replacement of Anglican episcopacy with a form of Presbyterianism; this prospective form of settlement was prevented by a coup d'état which shifted power from Parliament itself to the Parliamentary New Model Army, controlled by Oliver Cromwell. The Army had King Charles I executed and for the next eleven years the British kingdoms operated under military dictatorship.
The Restoration of King Charles II produced a reaction in which the King regained a large part of the power held by his father. No subsequent British monarch would attempt to rule without Parliament, after the Glorious Revolution of 1688, political disputes would be resolved through elections and parliamentary manoeuvring, rather than by an appeal to force. Charles II restored episcopacy in the Church of England, his first "Cavalier Parliament" began as a royalist body, passed a series of acts re-establishing the Church by law and punishing dissent by both Roman Catholics and non-Anglican Protestants. These acts did not reflect the King's personal views and demonstrated the existence of a Royalist ideology beyond mere subservience to the Court. A series of disasters in the late 1660s and 1670s discredited Charles II's governments, powerful political interests began to agitate for a greater role of Parliament in government, coupled with more tolerance for Protestant dissenters; these interests would soon coalesce as the Whigs.
As direct attacks on the King were politically impossible and could lead to execution for treason, opponents of the power of the Court framed their challenges as exposés of subversive and sinister Catholic plots. Although the matter of these plots was fictitious, they reflected two uncomfortable political realities: first, that Charles II had undertaken measures to convert the kingdom to Catholicism; as a political term, "Tory" entered English politics during the Exclusion Bill crisis of 1678–1681. The Whigs, were those who supported the exclusion of James, the Duke of York from the succession to thrones of Scotland and England and Ireland and the Tories were those who opposed the Exclusion Bill; the Whigs tried to link the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, the Duke of Ormonde, with the foremost Irish Tory, Redmond O'Hanlon
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is the head of government of the United Kingdom. The Prime Minister directs both the executive and the legislature, together with their Cabinet are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Monarch, to Parliament, to their political party and to the electorate; the office of Prime Minister is one of the Great Offices of State. The current holder of the office, Theresa May, leader of the Conservative Party, was appointed by the Queen on 13 July 2016; the office is not established by any statute or constitutional document but exists only by long-established convention, which stipulates that the monarch must appoint as Prime Minister the person most to command the confidence of the House of Commons. The position of Prime Minister was not created; the office is therefore best understood from a historical perspective. The origins of the position are found in constitutional changes that occurred during the Revolutionary Settlement and the resulting shift of political power from the Sovereign to Parliament.
Although the Sovereign was not stripped of the ancient prerogative powers and remained the head of government, politically it became necessary for him or her to govern through a Prime Minister who could command a majority in Parliament. By the 1830s the Westminster system of government had emerged; the political position of Prime Minister was enhanced by the development of modern political parties, the introduction of mass communication, photography. By the start of the 20th century the modern premiership had emerged. Prior to 1902, the Prime Minister sometimes came from the House of Lords, provided that his government could form a majority in the Commons; however as the power of the aristocracy waned during the 19th century the convention developed that the Prime Minister should always sit in the lower house. As leader of the House of Commons, the Prime Minister's authority was further enhanced by the Parliament Act 1911 which marginalised the influence of the House of Lords in the law-making process.
The Prime Minister is ex officio First Lord of the Treasury and Minister for the Civil Service. Certain privileges, such as residency of 10 Downing Street, are accorded to Prime Ministers by virtue of their position as First Lord of the Treasury; the status of the position as Prime Minister means that the incumbent is ranked as one of the most powerful and influential people in the world. The Prime Minister is the head of the United Kingdom government; as such, the modern Prime Minister leads the Cabinet. In addition, the Prime Minister leads a major political party and commands a majority in the House of Commons; the incumbent wields both significant legislative and executive powers. Under the British system, there is a unity of powers rather than separation. In the House of Commons, the Prime Minister guides the law-making process with the goal of enacting the legislative agenda of their political party. In an executive capacity, the Prime Minister appoints all other Cabinet members and ministers, co-ordinates the policies and activities of all government departments, the staff of the Civil Service.
The Prime Minister acts as the public "face" and "voice" of Her Majesty's Government, both at home and abroad. Upon the advice of the Prime Minister, the Sovereign exercises many statutory and prerogative powers, including high judicial, political and Church of England ecclesiastical appointments; the British system of government is based on an uncodified constitution, meaning that it is not set out in any single document. The British constitution consists of many documents and most for the evolution of the Office of the Prime Minister, it is based on customs known as constitutional conventions that became accepted practice. In 1928, Prime Minister H. H. Asquith described this characteristic of the British constitution in his memoirs:In this country we live... under an unwritten Constitution. It is true that we have on the Statute-book great instruments like Magna Carta, the Petition of Right, the Bill of Rights which define and secure many of our rights and privileges, they rest on usage, convention of slow growth in their early stages, not always uniform, but which in the course of time received universal observance and respect.
The relationships between the Prime Minister and the Sovereign and Cabinet are defined by these unwritten conventions of the constitution. Many of the Prime Minister's executive and legislative powers are royal prerogatives which are still formally vested in the Sovereign, who remains the head of state. Despite its growing
1832 United Kingdom general election
The 1832 United Kingdom general election, the first after the Reform Act, saw the Whigs win a large majority, with the Tories winning less than 30% of the vote. The Earl Grey had been Prime Minister since November 1830, he headed the first predominantly Whig administration since the Ministry of All the Talents in 1806–07. In addition to the Whigs themselves, Grey was supported by other allied politicians; the Whigs and their allies were coming to be referred to as liberals, but no formal Liberal Party had been established at the time of this election, so all the politicians supporting the ministry are referred to as Whig in the above results. The Leader of the House of Commons since 1830 was Viscount Althorp, who served as Chancellor of the Exchequer; the last Tory prime minister, at the time of this election, was the Duke of Wellington. After leaving government office, Wellington continued to lead the Tory peers and was the overall Leader of the Opposition; the Tory Leader of the Opposition in the House of Commons was Bt.
John Wilson Croker had used the term "conservative" in 1830, but the Tories at the time of this election had not yet become known as the Conservative Party. This distinction would take hold after the Liberal Party was created. In Irish politics, Daniel O'Connell was continuing his campaign for repeal of the Act of Union, he had founded the Irish Repeal Association and it presented candidates independent of the two principal parties. Following the passage of the Reform Act 1832 and related legislation to reform the electoral system and redistribute constituencies, the tenth United Kingdom Parliament was dissolved on 3 December 1832; the new Parliament was summoned to meet on 29 January 1833, for a maximum seven-year term from that date. The maximum term could be and was curtailed, by the monarch dissolving the Parliament, before its term expired. At this period there was not one election day. After receiving a writ for the election to be held, the local returning officer fixed the election timetable for the particular constituency or constituencies he was concerned with.
Polling in seats with contested elections could continue for many days. The general election took place between December 1832 and January 1833; the first nomination was on 8 December, with the first contest on 10 December and the last contest on 8 January 1833. It was usual for polling in the University constituencies and in Orkney and Shetland to take place about a week after other seats. Disregarding contests in the Universities and Orkney and Shetland, the last poll was on 1 January 1833. For the distribution of constituencies in the unreformed House of Commons, before this election, see the United Kingdom general election, 1831. Apart from the disenfranchisement of Grampound for corruption in 1821 and the transfer of its two seats as additional members for Yorkshire from 1826, there had been no change in the constituencies of England since the 1670s. In some cases the county and borough seats had remained unaltered since the 13th century. Welsh constituencies had been unchanged since the 16th century.
Those in Scotland had remained the same since 1708 and in Ireland since 1801. In 1832 politicians were facing an unfamiliar electoral map, as well as an electorate including those qualified under a new uniform householder franchise in the boroughs; however the reform legislation had not removed all the anomalies in the electoral system. Table of largest and smallest electorates 1832–33, by country and number of seats Monmouthshire is included in Wales in these tables. Sources for this period may include the county in England. Table 1: Constituencies and MPs, by type and country Table 2: Number of seats per constituency, by type and country List of United Kingdom general elections List of MPs elected in the United Kingdom general election, 1832 Craig, F. W. S. British Electoral Facts: 1832–1987, Dartmouth: Gower, ISBN 0900178302 Rallings, Colin. British Electoral Facts 1832–1999, Ashgate Publishing Ltd Walker, B. M. ed. Parliamentary Election Results in Ireland 1801–1922, Royal Irish Academy Spartacus: Political Parties and Election Results
1826 United Kingdom general election
The 1826 United Kingdom general election saw the Tories under the Earl of Liverpool win a substantial and increased majority over the Whigs. In Ireland, Home Rule candidates, working with the Whigs, won large gains from Unionist candidates; the seventh United Kingdom Parliament was dissolved on 2 June 1826. The new Parliament was summoned to meet on 25 July 1826, for a maximum seven-year term from that date; the maximum term could be and was curtailed, by the monarch dissolving the Parliament, before its term expired. The Tory leader was the Earl of Liverpool, Prime Minister since his predecessor's assassination in 1812. Liverpool had led his party to three general election victories before that of 1826; the Tory Leader of the House of Commons until 1822, when he committed suicide, was Robert Stewart. He was known by the courtesy title of Viscount Castlereagh, until he inherited his father's Irish peerage and became the 2nd Marquess of Londonderry in 1821. Londonderry was replaced as leader by George Canning, who remained Leader of the House of Commons in 1826.
The Whig Party continued to suffer from weak leadership in the House of Commons. In 1824 the Earl Grey gave up the formal Whig leadership in the Lords, although he remained the most prominent Whig peer. Grey asked his friends to look to the leadership of the Marquess of Lansdowne. Although Lansdowne performed the functions of leader, he did not accept the title. At the time of the general election, Grey was still the leading figure amongst the Whig peers, it was that he would have been invited to form a government, had the Whigs come to power, although in this era the monarch rather than the governing party decided which individual would be Prime Minister. The Leader of the Opposition in the House of Commons at the previous general election, George Tierney, disclaimed the leadership on 23 January 1821. No new Whig leader emerged during the rest of the Parliament. There had been significant developments in Irish politics since the 1820 general election. Whilst Catholics in Ireland—who met the normal property qualifications—had been permitted to vote since before the Union, they were still not eligible to sit in the United Kingdom Parliament.
The right for Catholics to serve in Parliament was known as a measure of Catholic emancipation. In 1823, Daniel O'Connell started a campaign for repeal of the Act of Union, took Catholic Emancipation as his rallying call, establishing the Catholic Association. From 1826, the Catholic Association began to support pro-emancipation candidates in elections; the Association used its money and manpower to campaign for candidates to be elected into Parliament, to pressure the government from within to pass Catholic emancipation. At this period there was not one election day. After receiving a writ for the election to be held, the local returning officer fixed the election timetable for the particular constituency or constituencies he was concerned with. Polling in seats with contested elections could continue for many days; the general election took place between the first contest on 7 June and the last contest on 12 July 1826. In 1821 the borough of Grampound in Cornwall was disenfranchised for corruption.
Its two seats were transferred to the county of Yorkshire, which from this general election became a four-seat constituency. Monmouthshire is included in Wales in these tables. Sources for this period may include the county in England. Table 1: Constituencies and MPs, by type and country Table 2: Number of seats per constituency, by type and country United Kingdom general elections MPs elected in the United Kingdom general election, 1826 British Electoral Facts 1832–1999, compiled and edited by Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher. Source: Dates of Elections – Footnote to Table 5.02 British Historical Facts 1760–1830, by Chris Cook and John Stevenson. Source: Types of constituencies – Great Britain His Majesty's Opposition 1714–1830, by Archibald S. Foord Parliamentary Election Results in Ireland 1801–1922, edited by B. M. Walker. Source: Types of constituencies – Ireland