Robert Peel: Wikis

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The Right Honourable
 Sir Robert Peel, Bt


In office
30 August 1841 – 29 June 1846
Monarch Victoria
Preceded by The Viscount Melbourne
Succeeded by The Lord John Russell
In office
10 December 1834 – 8 April 1835
Monarch William IV
Preceded by The Duke of Wellington
Succeeded by The Viscount Melbourne

In office
2 December 1834 – 8 April 1835
Monarch William IV
Preceded by The Lord Denman
Succeeded by Thomas Spring Rice

Born 5 February 1788(1788-02-05)
Ramsbottom, Lancashire, England
Died 2 July 1850 (aged 62)
Westminster, London, England
Political party Tory/ Conservative
Alma mater Christ Church, Oxford

Sir Robert Peel, 2nd Baronet (5 February 1788 – 2 July 1850) was the Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 10 December 1834 to 8 April 1835, and again from 30 August 1841 to 29 June 1846. He helped create the modern concept of the police force (leading to officers being known as "bobbies", in England, or Peelers, in Ireland, to this day) while Home Secretary , oversaw the formation of the Conservative Party out of the shattered Tory Party, and repealed the Corn Laws.

Contents

Biography

Peel was born in Bury, Lancashire, England to the industrialist and Member of Parliament Sir Robert Peel, 1st Baronet. His father was one of the richest textile manufacturers of the early Industrial Revolution.[1] Peel was educated first at Hipperholme Grammar School, then at Harrow School and finally Christ Church, Oxford, where he took a double first in classics and mathematics.[2] He is also believed to have briefly attended Bury Grammar School. While living in Tamworth, he is credited with the development of the Tamworth Pig by breeding Irish stock with some local Tamworth pigs.

Early political career

Peel entered politics at the young age of 21 as MP for the Irish rotten borough of Cashel, Tipperary.[3] With a scant 24 voters on the rolls, he was elected unopposed. His sponsor for the election (besides his father) was the Chief Secretary for Ireland, Sir Arthur Wellesley, the future Duke of Wellington, with whom Peel's political career would be entwined for the next 25 years. Peel made his maiden speech at the start of the 1810 session, when he was chosen by the Prime Minister, Spencer Perceval, to second the reply to the king's speech.[4] His speech was a sensation, famously described by the Speaker, Charles Abbot, as "the best first speech since that of William Pitt."[5]

For the next decade he occupied a series of relatively minor positions in the Tory governments: Undersecretary for War, Chief Secretary for Ireland, and chairman of the Bullion Committee (charged with stabilizing British finances after the end of the Napoleonic Wars).[6] He also changed constituency twice: first picking up another rotten borough, Chippenham, then becoming MP for Oxford University in 1817.[7]

He later served as MP for Tamworth from 1830 until his death. His home of Drayton Manor has since been demolished.[8]

Home Secretary

The Duke of Wellington
Prime Minister 1828-1830

Peel was considered one of the rising stars of the Tory party, first entering the cabinet in 1822 as Home Secretary.[9] As Home Secretary, he introduced a number of important reforms of British criminal law: most memorably establishing the Metropolitan Police Force (Metropolitan Police Act 1829).[10] He also reformed the criminal law, reducing the number of crimes punishable by death, and simplified it by repealing a large number of criminal statutes and consolidating their provisions into what are known as Peel's Acts.[11] He reformed the gaol system, introducing payment for gaolers and education for the inmates.[12]

He resigned as Home Secretary after the Prime Minister, Lord Liverpool, became incapacitated and was replaced by George Canning.[13] Canning favoured Catholic Emancipation, while Peel had been one of its most outspoken opponents (earning the nickname "Orange Peel").[14] Canning himself died less than four months later and, after the brief premiership of Lord Goderich, Peel returned to the post of Home Secretary under the premiership of his long-time ally the Duke of Wellington.[15] During this time he was widely perceived as the number-two in the Tory Party, after Wellington himself.[16]

However, the pressure on the new ministry from advocates of Catholic Emancipation was too great and an Emancipation Bill was passed the next year.[17] Peel felt compelled to resign his seat as MP representing the graduates of Oxford University (many of whom were Anglican clergymen), as he had stood on a platform of opposition to Catholic Emancipation (in 1815 he had, in fact, challenged to a duel the man most associated with emancipation, Daniel O'Connell).[18] Peel instead moved to a rotten borough, Westbury, retaining his Cabinet position. Peel's protégé Gladstone later emulated Peel by serving as MP for Oxford University from 1847 to 1865, before himself being defeated for his willingness to disestablish the Irish Church.

Police reform

Sir Robert Peel

It was in 1829 that Peel established the Metropolitan Police Force for London based at Scotland Yard. The 1,000 constables employed were affectionately nicknamed 'Bobbies' or, somewhat less affectionately, 'Peelers' (both terms are still used today). Although unpopular at first they proved very successful in cutting crime in London,[19] and by 1857 all cities in the UK were obliged to form their own police forces.[20] Known as the father of modern policing, Robert Peel developed the Peelian Principles which defined the ethical requirements police officers must follow in order to be effective. His most memorable principle was, "the police are the public, and the public are the police."

Whigs in power (1830-1834)

Lord Grey
Prime Minister 1830-34

The Middle and Working Classes in England at that time, however, were clamoring for reform, and Catholic Emancipation was only one of the ideas in the air.[21] The Tory ministry refused to bend on other issues and were swept out of office in 1830 in favour of the Whigs.[22] The following few years were extremely turbulent, but eventually enough reforms were passed that King William IV felt confident enough to invite the Tories to form a ministry again in succession to those of Lord Grey and Lord Melbourne in 1834.[23] Peel was selected as Prime Minister but was in Italy at the time, so Wellington acted as a caretaker for the three weeks until Peel's return.[24]

First term as Prime Minister (1834-1835)

This new Tory Ministry was a minority government, however, and depended on Whig goodwill for its continued existence. As his statement of policy at the general election of January 1835, Peel issued the Tamworth Manifesto.[25] The issuing of this document is often seen as one of the most crucial points at which the Tories became the Conservative Party.[26] In it he pledged that the Conservatives would endorse modest reform, but the Whigs instead formed a compact with Daniel O'Connell's Irish Radical members to repeatedly defeat the government on various bills.[27] Eventually Peel's ministry resigned out of frustration and the Whigs under Lord Melbourne returned to power.[28] The only real achievements of Peel's first administration was a commission to review the governance of the Church of England. This ecclesiastical commission being the forerunner of the Church Commissioners.[29] A further achievement was a rapid gain in seats in the House of Commons which was around 100 seats in the 100 days Peel's Ministry lasted.[30]

Leader of the Opposition (1835-1841)

In May 1839, he was offered another chance to form a government, this time by the new monarch, Queen Victoria.[31] However, this too would have been a minority government and Peel felt he needed a further sign of confidence from his Queen. Lord Melbourne had been Victoria's confidant for several years, and many of the higher posts in Victoria's household were held by the wives and female relatives of Whigs;[32] there was some feeling that Victoria had allowed herself to be too closely associated with the Whig party. Peel therefore asked that some of this coterie be dismissed and replaced with their Conservative counterparts, provoking the so-called Bedchamber Crisis.[33] Victoria refused to change her household, and despite pleadings from the Duke of Wellington, relied on assurances of support from Whig leaders. Peel refused to form a government, and the Whigs returned to power.[34]

Second term as Prime Minister (1841-1846)

Economic and Financial Reforms

Peel came to office during an economic recession which had seen a slump in world trade and a budget deficit of £2.5 million run up by the whigs. Confidence in Banks and Businesses was low and a trade deficit existed.

To raise revenue Peel's 1842 budget saw the re-introduction of Income Tax,[35] removed previously at the end of the Napoleonic War. The money raised was more than expected and allowed for the removal and reduction of over 1,200 tariffs including the controversial sugar duties.[36] It was also in the 1842 budget that the repeal of the corn laws was first proposed.[37] It was defeated 4:1.

Factory Act

Peel finally had a chance to head a majority government following the election of July 1841.[38] His promise of modest reform was held to, and the second most famous bill of this ministry, while "reforming" in 21st century eyes, was in fact aimed at the reformers themselves, with their constituency among the new industrial rich. The Factory Act 1844 acted more against these industrialists than it did against the traditional stronghold of the Conservatives, the landed gentry, by restricting the number of hours that children and women could work in a factory, and setting rudimentary safety standards for machinery.[39] Interestingly, this was a continuation of his own father's work as an MP, as the elder Robert Peel was most noted for reform of working conditions during the first part of the 19th century. Helping him was Lord Shaftesbury, a British MP who also established the coal mines act. In 1843 Peel was the target of a failed assassination attempt; a criminally-insane Scottish woodsman named Daniel M'Naghten stalked him for several days before accidentally killing Peel's personal secretary Edward Drummond instead.[40]

Corn Laws and after

Lord Russell
Prime Minister 1846-1852, 1865-1866

The most notable act of Peel's second ministry, however, was the one that would bring it down.[41] This time Peel moved against the landholders by repealing the Corn Laws, which supported agricultural revenues by restricting grain imports.[42] This radical break with Conservative protectionism was triggered by the Great Irish Famine (1845-1849).[43] Tory agriculturalists were sceptical of the extent of the problem,[44] and Peel reacted slowly to the famine. As realisation dawned, however, he hoped that ending the Corn Laws would free up more food for the Irish.

His own party failed to support the bill, but it passed with Whig and Radical support. On the third reading of Peel's Bill of Repeal (Importation Act 1846) on 15 May, MPs voted 327 votes to 229 (a majority of 98) to repeal the Corn Laws. On 25 June the Duke of Wellington persuaded the House of Lords to pass it. On that same night Peel's Irish Coercion Bill was defeated in the Commons by 292 to 219 by "a combination of Whigs, Radicals, and Tory protectionists".[45] Following this, on 29 June 1846, Peel resigned as Prime Minister. [46]

Though he knew repealing the laws would mean the end of his ministry, Peel decided to do so.[47] It is possible that Peel merely used the Irish Famine as an excuse to repeal the Corn Laws as he had been an intellectual convert to free trade since the 1820s. Blake points out that if Peel were convinced that total repeal was necessary to stave off the famine, he would have enacted a bill that brought about immediate temporary repeal, not permanent repeal over a three-year period of gradual tapering-off of duties.

The historian Boyd Hilton argues Peel knew from 1844 he was going to be deposed as Conservative leader—many of his MPs had taken to voting against him and the rupture within the party between liberals and paternalist which had been so damaging in the 1820s, but masked by the issue of reform in the 1830s was brought to the surface over the Corn Laws. Hilton's hypothesis is that Peel wished to actually be deposed on a liberal issue so that he might later lead a Peelite/Whig/Liberal alliance.

As an aside in reference to the Repeal of the Corn Laws, Peel did make some moves to subsidise the purchase of food for the Irish, but this attempt was small and had little tangible effect. In the age of laissez-faire,[48] government taxes were small, and subsidies or direct economic interference were almost non-existent. That subsidies were actually given was very much out of character for the political times; Peel's successor, Lord John Russell, received more criticism than Peel on Irish policy. The repeal of the Corn Laws was more political than humanitarian.[49] Peel's support for free trade could already be seen in his 1842 and 1845 budgets;[50] in late 1842 Graham wrote to Peel that "the next change in the Corn Laws must be to an open trade" while arguing that the government should not tackle the issue.[51] Speaking to the cabinet in 1844, Peel argued that the choice was maintenance of the 1842 Corn Law or total repeal.[52] Despite all of Peel's efforts, his reform programs had little effect on the situation in Ireland.[53]

Later career and death

He did retain a hard core of supporters however, known as Peelites,[54] and at one point in 1849 was actively courted by the Whig/Radical coalition. He continued to stand on his conservative principles, however, and refused. Nevertheless, he was influential on several important issues, including the furtherance of British free trade with the repeal of the Navigation Acts.[55] Peel was a member of the committee which controlled the House of Commons Library, and on 16 April 1850 was responsible for passing the motion that controlled its scope and collection policy for the rest of the century.

Peel was thrown from his horse while riding up Constitution Hill in London on 29 June 1850, the horse stumbled on top of him and he died three days later on 2 July at the age of 62 due to a clavicular fracture rupturing his subclavian vessels.[56] His Peelite followers, led by Lord Aberdeen and William Gladstone, went on to fuse with the Whigs as the Liberal Party.[57]

Family

Peel married Julia, youngest daughter of General Sir John Floyd, 1st Baronet, in 1820.[58] They had five sons and two daughters. Four of his sons gained distinction in their own right. His eldest son Sir Robert Peel, 3rd Baronet, served as Chief Secretary for Ireland from 1861 to 1865. His second son Sir Frederick Peel was a politician and railway commissioner. His third son Sir William Peel was a naval commander and recipient of the Victoria Cross. His fifth son Arthur Wellesley Peel was Speaker of the House of Commons and created Viscount Peel in 1895. His daughter Julia married the 6th Earl of Jersey. Julia, Lady Peel, died in 1859. Known relative 2010 - Matthew Brown (Born 1992)

Memorials

Statues

Statues of Sir Robert Peel are found in the following UK locations.

Public Houses / Hotels

The following Public Houses, bars or hotels are named after Peel.[60]

UK

Elsewhere

  • The Sir Robert Peel Hotel (colloquially known as "The Peel" [6]), a gay bar and nightclub located at the corner of Peel and Wellington Streets in the Melbourne suburb of Collingwood, in Australia.
  • The Sir Robert Peel Motor Lodge Hotel, Alexandria Bay, New York.

Other Memorials

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 2-11.
  2. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 11-12.
  3. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 1; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 13; 376.
  4. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 18.
  5. ^ Gash, Mr. Secretary Peel, 59-61; 68-69.
  6. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 6-12; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 18-65; 376.
  7. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 12; 18; 35.
  8. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 490; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 4; 119.
  9. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 3; 9; 13; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 66; 68; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 65.
  10. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 2; Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 3; 44; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 103.
  11. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 68-71; 122; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 104.
  12. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 70-71.
  13. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 4; 96-97; Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 26-28.
  14. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 21-48; 91-100.
  15. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 28-30; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 103-104; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 18.
  16. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 104.
  17. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 37-39; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 114-121.
  18. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 35-40; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 46-47; 110; 376.
  19. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 88-89.
  20. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 87-90.
  21. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 123-140.
  22. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 45-50; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 136-141.
  23. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 51-62; 64-90; 129-143; 146-177; 193-201; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 179; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 66.
  24. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 196-197; 199; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 66-67.
  25. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 210-215; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 184; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 12; 69-72.
  26. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 213-215; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 180-182; Read Peel and the Victorians, 68; 86.
  27. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 227; 229-235; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 185-187; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 71-73.
  28. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 250-254; 257-261; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 188-192; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 74-76.
  29. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 224-226.
  30. ^ Read, Peel and the Victorians, 74.
  31. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 417-418; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 206.
  32. ^ Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 416-417; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 206-207.
  33. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 207-208; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 89.
  34. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 23; Clark, Peel and the Conservatives: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841, 419-426; 448; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 208-209; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 89-91.
  35. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 35-36; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 227; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 112.
  36. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 37; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 235; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 113-114.
  37. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 35-36; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 112-113.
  38. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 24.
  39. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 40-42; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 302-305; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 125; 129.
  40. ^ Read, Peel and the Victorians, 121-122.
  41. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 113-115.
  42. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, vi.
  43. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 66; Ramsay; Sir Robert Peel, 332-333.
  44. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 72.
  45. ^ Schonhardt-Bailey, p. 239.
  46. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 68-69; 70; 72; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 347; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 230-231.
  47. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 67-68; 69.
  48. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 70.
  49. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 69-71.
  50. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 35-37; 59.
  51. ^ Quoted in Gash, Sir Robert Peel, 362.
  52. ^ Gash, Sir Robert Peel, 429.
  53. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 48-49.
  54. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 78-80; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 353-355.
  55. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 78; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 377; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 257.
  56. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 80; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 361-363; Read, Peel and the Victorians, 1; 266-270.
  57. ^ Adelman, Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850, 86-87; Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 364.
  58. ^ Ramsay, Sir Robert Peel, 61.
  59. ^ Sir Robert Peel Statue Bury
  60. ^ The UK-based Peel Hotels group are named after their founders Robert and Charles Peel, not Sir Robert Peel
  61. ^ The Peel Centre with image of the monument

References

  • Adelman, Paul (1989). Peel and the Conservative Party: 1830-1850. London and New York: Longman. ISBN 0-582-35557-5. 
  • Clark, George Kitson (1964). Peel and the Conservative Party: A Study in Party Politics 1832-1841. 2nd ed. Hamden, Connecticut: Archon Books, The Shoe String Press, Inc. 
  • Cooke Taylor, William (1851). Life and times of Sir Robert Peel. London: Peter Jackson. 
  • Gash, Norman (1961). Mr. Secretary Peel: The Life of Sir Robert Peel to 1830. New York: Longmans. 
  • Gash, Norman (1972). Sir Robert Peel: The Life of Sir Robert Peel after 1830. Totowa, New Jersey: Rowman and Littlefield. ISBN 0-87471-132-0. 
  • Ramsay, Anna Augustus Whittall (1928, 1969). Sir Robert Peel. Freeport, New York: Books for Library Press. 
  • Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs
  • Leigh Rayment's Baronetage Page
  • Read, Donald (1987). Peel and the Victorians. Oxford: Basil Blackwell Ltd, New York: Basil Blackwell, Inc. ISBN 0-631-15725-5. 
  • Stephen, Sir Leslie and Sir Sidney Lee (editors). The Dictionary of National Biography: From the Earliest Times to 1900. Volume XV Owens-Pockrich. Oxford University Press.

External links

Offices held

Political offices
Preceded by
William Wellesley-Pole
Chief Secretary for Ireland
1812 – 1818
Succeeded by
Charles Grant
Preceded by
The Viscount Sidmouth
Home Secretary
1822 – 1827
Succeeded by
William Sturges-Bourne
Preceded by
The Marquess of Lansdowne
Home Secretary
1828 – 1830
Succeeded by
The Viscount Melbourne
Preceded by
William Huskisson
Leader of the House of Commons
1828 – 1830
Succeeded by
The Viscount Althorp
Preceded by
The Duke of Wellington
(caretaker, preceded by)
The Viscount Melbourne
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
10 December 1834 – 8 April 1835
Succeeded by
The Viscount Melbourne
Preceded by
The Lord Denman
Chancellor of the Exchequer
1834 – 1835
Succeeded by
Thomas Spring Rice
Preceded by
Lord John Russell
Leader of the House of Commons
1834 – 1835
Succeeded by
Lord John Russell
Preceded by
The Viscount Melbourne
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
30 August 1841 – 29 June 1846
Preceded by
Lord John Russell
Leader of the House of Commons
1841 – 1846
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Quintin Dick
Member of Parliament for Cashel
1809 – 1812
Succeeded by
Sir Charles Saxton, Bt
Preceded by
John Maitland
James Dawkins
Member of Parliament for Chippenham
1812 – 1817
With: Charles Brooke
Succeeded by
Charles Brooke
John Maitland
Preceded by
William Scott
Charles Abbot
Member of Parliament for Oxford University
1817 – 1829
With: William Scott 1817–1821
Richard Heber 1821–1826
Thomas Grimston Bucknall Estcourt 1826–1829
Succeeded by
Thomas Grimston Bucknall Estcourt
Sir Robert Inglis
Preceded by
Sir Manasseh Masseh Lopes
Sir George Warrender
Member of Parliament for Westbury
1829 – 1830
With: Sir George Warrender
Succeeded by
Sir Alexander Grant
Michael George Prendergast
Preceded by
William Yates Peel
Lord Charles Townshend
Member of Parliament for Tamworth
1830 – 1850
With: Lord Charles Townshend 1830–1835
William Yates Peel 1835–1837, 1847
Edward Henry A'Court 1837–1847
John Townshend 1847–1850
Succeeded by
John Townshend
Sir Robert Peel
Party political offices
Preceded by
The Duke of Wellington
Leader of the British Conservative Party
1834 – 1846
Succeeded by
The Lord Stanley
First
None recognized before
Conservative Leader in the Commons
1834 – 1846
Succeeded by
The Lord George Bentinck
Academic offices
Preceded by
The Lord Stanley
Rector of the University of Glasgow
1836 – 1838
Succeeded by
Sir James Graham
Baronetage of Great Britain
Preceded by
Robert Peel
Baronet
(of Drayton Manor)
1830 – 1850
Succeeded by
Robert Peel

Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Sir Robert Peel, 2nd Baronet (February 5, 1788 – July 2, 1850) was the Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from December 10, 1834 to April 8, 1835, and again from August 30, 1841 to June 29, 1846. He helped create the modern concept of the police force while Home Secretary, oversaw the formation of the Conservative Party out of the shattered Tory Party, and repealed the Corn Laws.

Sourced

  • I feel and know that the Repeal [of the Act of Union 1801] must lead to the dismemberment of this great empire; must make Great Britain a fourth-rate power in Europe, and Ireland a savage wilderness.
    • Speech in the House of Commons (April 1834).
  • If the spirit of the Reform Bill implies merely, a careful review of institutions, civil and ecclesiastical, undertaken in a friendly temper, combining, with the firm maintenance of established rights, the correction of proved abuses, and the redress of real grievances,—in that case, I can for myself and colleagues undertake to act in such a spirit and with such intentions.
    • Speech in the House of Commons (18 December, 1834).
  • I have read all that has been written by the gravest authorities on political economy on the subject of rent, wages, taxes, tithes.
    • Speech in the House of Commons (15 March, 1839).
  • I shall leave a name execrated by every monopolist...but it may be...sometimes remembered with expressions of goodwill in the abodes of those whose lot it is to labour and to earn their daily bread in the sweat of their brow, when they shall recruit their exhausted strength with abundant and untaxed food, the sweeter because it is no longer leavened by a sense of injustice.
    • Resignation speech in the House of Commons after the repeal of the Corn Laws (29 June, 1846).

About

  • The Right Honourable gentleman caught the Whigs bathing and walked away with their clothes.
  • His smile was like the silver plate on a coffin.
    • Daniel O'Connell.

External links

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has an article about:

Simple English

The Rt Hon Sir Robert Peel, Bt
File:Robert Peel


In office
December 10, 1834 – April 8, 1835
August 30, 1841June 29, 1846
Preceded by The Viscount Melbourne
Succeeded by The Viscount Melbourne
The Lord John Russell

In office
December 2, 1834 – April 8, 1835
Preceded by Thomas Denman
Succeeded by Thomas Spring Rice

Born 5 February 1788
Bury, Lancashire
Died 2 July 1850
Westminster
Political party Conservative

Sir Robert Peel (February 5 1788July 2 1850) was an important British politician. He established many well-known laws in Britain including the police force and had a brief term as Prime Minister.

In 1835 he published the Tamworth Manifesto, which told people how he wanted the government to be run. He came to power in 1841, defeating the Whig government of Lord Melbourne, and ruled the country until 1846. During this time, Peel's popularity with other party members became lower because many of them thought he was too proud, and disliked the way he changed his mind over many important issues, often without telling them first. The defeat of his Conservative Party in 1846 was followed by a brief period in the House of Commons until his death in 1851, in a horse riding accident. Peel is one of the famous people who appears on the cover of The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album.


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