ARKWRIGHT, Richard (1781-1832), of Ashbourne Place, Derbys.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



29 Mar. 1813 - 1818
1826 - 1830

Family and Education

b. 30 Sept. 1781, 1st s. of Richard Arkwright of Matlock and Willersley by Mary, da. of Adam Simpson of Bonsall. educ. Eton 1796; Trinity Coll. Camb. 1801. m. 22 May 1803, Martha Maria, da. of Rev. William Beresford of Ashbourne, rector of Sonning, Berks., 2s. 1da. d.v.p.

Offices Held

Lt. Leics. yeomanry 1803-4, capt. W. Leics. vols. 1804; maj. Chatsworth regt. Derbys. militia 1809; cornet, N. Derbys. yeoman cav. 1817.


Arkwright seems to have taken no active part in the lucrative cotton manufacturing business established by his grandfather Sir Richard Arkwright (1731-92), the inventor of the spinning-frame, and continued on a more limited scale by his father, who invested his capital in other ways and died a multi-millionaire in 1843. At the general election of 1812 he stood for Nottingham as a ministerialist, but, despite expenses estimated at £20,000, was beaten by two Whigs. The following year he was returned on a vacancy for the Treasury borough of Rye and his name was added to the list of Members expected to support government. He did so in the divisions on the civil list, 14 Apr. and 8 May 1815, 6 May 1816, and the suspension of habeas corpus, 23 June 1817, but voted for reduction of the army estimates, 6 and 8 Mar. 1816. He opposed Catholic relief, 24 May 1813, 21 May 1816 and 9 May 1817, and Brougham’s motion for inquiry into the education of the poor, 3 June 1818. He is not known to have spoken in the House during that Parliament. Arkwright did not seek re-election in 1818, but reappeared in the House as Member for Rye in 1826.

He predeceased his father, dying 28 Mar. 1832.

Vis. Eng. and Wales Notes ed. Crisp, vii. 1; S. Glover, The Peak Guide (1830), 121; information from R. S. Fitton.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: Winifred Stokes