New Shoreham


Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer

Background Information

Right of Election:

in the inhabitants paying scot and lot

Number of voters:

about 70 in 1681


20 Mar. 1661EDWARD BLAKER 
20 Jan. 1662WILLIAM QUATREMAINE vice Springet, deceased 
24 Oct. 1667JOHN FAGG II vice Quatremaine, deceased 
 Hon. Robert Sidney 
11 Feb. 1673HENRY GORING II vice Fagg, deceased 
24 Oct. 1678SIR ANTHONY DEANE vice Blaker, deceased 
11 Feb. 1679ROBERT FAGG 
 Sir Anthony Deane 
15 Aug. 1679JOHN HALES 
 Robert Fagg 
18 Feb. 1681ROBERT FAGG68
 [Samuel] Sanders311

Main Article

New Shoreham, a borough by prescription, had developed no municipal organization, and the constable acted as returning officer. Although he was elected in the manorial court, there is no evidence in this period that the Howards exercised any parliamentary interest here as lords of the manor. More important were two local gentry families, the Gorings of Highden and the Faggs of Wiston. No warships were built at Shoreham between 1654 and 1690, but the Admiralty maintained an interest through shipments of timber through the port. The openness of the borough is demonstrated by the success of Herbert Springet, whose estates lay in East Sussex, and Edward Blaker, an obscure local gentleman, in 1660 and 1661. Springet, a Parliamentarian, had sat for the borough as a recruiter, but now proclaimed himself an enthusiastic churchman, while the colourless Blaker probably derived his politics from his wife’s family, the royalist Gorings.2

On Springet’s death in 1662 he was succeeded by William Quatremaine, a Cavalier and court physician, who had married into a Sussex family and practised for a time at Lewes. The Admiralty interest was more plainly asserted at the by-election of 1667, when the Duke of York recommended Robert Sidney colonel of the Holland Regiment. But he was defeated by John Fagg, the country candidate. On Fagg’s death Blaker was joined by his nephew, Henry Goring. Blaker himself died in September 1678, and the Government made strenuous and successful efforts to secure the return of Sir Anthony Deane, a naval commissioner and formerly head of the Portsmouth dockyard. The Duke of Monmouth as captain-general asked Goring, who was serving in the newly raised forces, for his ‘assistance and interest’, while the Duke of York wrote a long and enthusiastic letter on Deane’s behalf to the constable and burgesses. The government interest was managed by Samuel Fortrey, a clerk in the Ordnance, whose younger son James was rewarded by the Duke of York with a commission in his regiment, a place in his household, and a marriage to his cast-off mistress.3

The elections to the three Exclusion Parliaments were all contested, even though Goring withdrew to his family borough of Bramber. In February 1679 Robert Fagg was returned with John Cheale, a member of a West Sussex yeoman family which had been granted arms only in 1672. Although Cheale opposed exclusion, Deane petitioned against him, presumably in defence of the Admiralty interest in the borough, since he had himself been successful at Harwich without a contest. No report had been made before Deane was sent to the Tower on 20 May. For the August election it seems that the Fagg interest originally hoped to secure the cooperation of Fortrey by nominating Sir Henry Capel, who had bought his house at Kew. But Capel had no mind to quit his safe seat at Tewkesbury, and ‘inclined to surrender that interest’ to Edward Hales I. When Hales was elected for Hythe, the country party were caught off balance. His cousin John, whose brother Edward Hales II was on the new Admiralty commission, stood with Cheale, and Fagg was defeated. Even more surprising, his petition was never reported to a House which showed itself ready to unseat court Members on the flimsiest pretext. However, Cheale may have changed his politics as a result of his parliamentary experience, and there is no evidence that he stood in 1681. Consequently the Admiralty was in a position to nominate two candidates. Hales’s colleague, Samuel Sanders, was a son-in-law of the commissioner of the Chatham dockyard, Sir John Tippetts, and his candidature was no doubt calculated to win over the dissenters, since his father was an Independent who sat for Derbyshire in the Protectorate Parliaments. The Fagg interest was now in top gear, however; Robert Fagg was returned almost unanimously, and Hales defeated Sanders by ten votes. In the autumn the dissenters adopted as their candidates Cheale and Fagg’s brother-in-law, Philip Gell.4

A new interest appeared in the 1685 election with the return of Sir Edward Hungerford, a Whig who had bought the nearby manor of Broadwater. For the other seat Sunderland applied for Goring’s interest on behalf of Sir Richard Haddock, an Admiralty commissioner. No contest is recorded. In 1688 the King’s agents reported that a ‘good election’ was expected, though no court candidates were named. Hungerford was re-elected in 1689. His colleague was an obscure local gentleman called John Monke, probably a moderate Tory, who had inherited the Blaker interest.5

Authors: B. M. Crook / Basil Duke Henning


  • 1. Smith's Prot. Intell. 28 Feb. 1681.
  • 2. H. Cheale, Hist. Shoreham 69, 71; CSP Dom. 1665-6, p. 548; 1667-8, pp. 203, 489; 1673, p. 14; VCH Suss. ii. 165-7.
  • 3. Adm. 2/1745, f. 167, 1746, f. 152; CSP Dom. 1678, p. 438; Cal. Treas. Bks. v. 830, 854; The Gen. iii. 298.
  • 4. CJ, ix. 570, 638; Sidney Diary, i. 79; Smith’s Prot. Intell. 28 Feb. 1681; PCC 130 Exton; CSP Dom. 1680-1, p. 473.
  • 5. Fines of Manors (Suss. Rec. Soc. xix), 67; CSP Dom. 1685, p. 79; Duckett, Penal Laws (1882), 441.