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Relationship with Parliamentarians

There are over 90 of Charles Stanhope's speeches published in the volumes of Parliamentary Debates for the short five years he was in Parliament. His outspoken and often aggressive vocal nature is described as creating “considerable annoyance” (Newman, 1969, p.142) in the House of Commons. After tea duties were finally reduced in 1784, William Pitt thanked Stanhope for his suggestions and support of the measures. Stanhope is described as responding to this by "inadvertently hit[ting] Mr Pitt who sat directly beneath him...a circumstance which caused an immediate fit of laughter". (Parl. Hist., xxiv, 1103, cited in Newman, 1969, p. 143.)

Relationship with William Pitt

At this point in his career, Stanhope was a strong supporter of William Pitt, who he brought into the committee of the Kent Association. Pitt became Prime Minister in 1783, and was a key campaigner for the abolition of slavery and for Parliamentary reform throughout his life. When Pitt became Prime Minister Stanhope was offered a place in his government. He declined the offer but he continued to correspond with and advise Pitt regularly. However, when Pitt introduced his first budget as Prime Minster, Stanhope once again showed his independent mind by vocally disagreeing with new taxes, showing that his relationships in Parliament did not hamper his willingness to speak his mind. Another key relationship was with William Wilberforce. The two worked together on a Bill aiming to regulate expenses of county elections, which, sadly, failed in the Lords.

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The De Montfort Project is an outreach projectrun by the Parliamentary Archiveswhichexplores the life and impact of local MPs and Peers on both their local area and at Parliament.

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