ROUSE BOUGHTON, William Edward (1788-1856), of Rous Lench, nr. Alcester, Worcs. and Downton Hall, nr. Ludlow, Salop.

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



1818 - 23 Feb. 1819
1820 - 1826

Family and Education

b. 14 Sept. 1788, o. s. of Sir Charles William Rouse Boughton† (formerly Boughton Rouse), 9th bt., and Catherine, da. and h. of William Pearce Hall of Downton Hall. educ. ?Westminster 1803-5; Christ Church, Oxf. 1806; European tour until 1813.1 m. 24 Mar. 1824, Charlotte, da. and coh. of Thomas Andrew Knight of Wormsley Grange, Herefs., 3s. (1 d.v.p.) 5da. suc. fa. as 10th bt. 26 Feb. 1821. d. 22 May 1856.

Offices Held


Rouse Boughton, only son of the nabob and former Member, 1780-90, had been returned for the venal borough of Evesham as an ‘independent’ in 1818 but unseated on petition the following year. At the 1820 general election he offered again professing ‘unchanged’ principles and was returned unopposed.2 A very lax attender, when present he generally voted with the Whig opposition to the Liverpool ministry on most major issues, including economy, retrenchment and reduced taxation, but not Catholic relief; he never joined Brooks’s.3 On 26 Jan. 1821 he presented and endorsed an Evesham petition in support of Queen Caroline, urging ministers ‘to retrace their steps’. He was granted a month’s leave on account of his father’s death, 26 Feb., when he succeeded to the baronetcy and family estates, though his father’s will was proved ‘insolvent’ at under £25,000.4 He was absent from the division on Catholic relief two days later. He divided for reform of the Scottish representation, 10 May 1821, 2 June 1823, to reduce the number of placemen in the Commons, 31 May 1821, and for parliamentary reform, 25 Apr. 1822. According to Hudson Gurney*, he was one of several Members ‘converted’ by Sir Robert Wilson* to vote against his removal from the army, 13 Feb. 1822.5 He divided for inquiries into the prosecution of the Dublin Orange rioters, 22 Apr., and Catholic petitions complaining of the administration of justice in Ireland, 26 June 1823. He divided for suppression of the Catholic Association, 25 Feb., and against Catholic relief, 21 Apr., 10 May, and the Irish franchise bill, 26 Apr. 1825. He was in Brougham’s minority of 29 for making puisne judges immovable, 20 May 1825.

At the 1826 dissolution Rouse Boughton retired without explanation. He died in May 1856. By his will, dated 21 June 1846, he provided his five daughters with equal shares in £50,000 and left legacies of £100 to his two married sisters. The remainder of his estate passed to his elder surviving son and successor in the baronetcy, Charles Henry (1825-1906).6

Ref Volumes: 1820-1832

Authors: Philip Salmon / Robin Healey


  • 1. Castlereagh Corresp. ix. 11.
  • 2. Berrow’s Worcester Jnl. 17, 24 Feb., 2 Mar. 1820.
  • 3. Black Bk. (1823), 140; Session of Parl. 1825, p. 452.
  • 4. PROB 11/1640/127; IR26/850/177.
  • 5. Gurney diary, 13 Feb. 1822.
  • 6. PROB 11/2237/607; IR26/2055/906.