Helston (UK Parliament constituency)

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Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
County Cornwall
Major settlements Helston
Number of members 1298–1832: Two
1832–1885: One
Replaced by Truro

Helston, sometimes known as Helleston,[1] was a parliamentary borough centred on the small town of Helston in Cornwall.

Using the bloc vote system of election, it returned two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons of England until 1707, then to House of Commons of Great Britain until 1800, and to House of Commons of the United Kingdom until the 1832 general election.

The Reform Act 1832 reduced its representation to one member, elected by the first-past-the-post system. Under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885, it was abolished with effect from the 1885 general election.

Members of Parliament

MPs before 1640

  • Constituency created (1298)
Parliament First member Second member
1298 R de Rosemayn I de Kellyhellan[2]
1358 John Hamely [3]
1361 John Hamely [3]
1384 William Bodrugan[4]
Parliament of 1386 Roger Trewythenick John Urban
First Parliament of 1388 (Feb) Thomas Tregadereth Roger Trewythenick
Second Parliament of 1388 (Sep) Thomas Bray John Symon
First Parliament of 1390 (Jan) Roger Trewythenick John Urban
Second Parliament of 1390 (Nov) ? ?
Parliament of 1391 Roger Trewythenick William Glasen
Parliament of 1393 John Trereise Michael Trereise
Parliament of 1394 ? ?
Parliament of 1395 Roger Trewythenick Roger Skewys
First Parliament of 1397 (Jan) Thomas Beville John Urban
Second Parliament of 1397 (Sep) John Pengersick John Skewys
Parliament of 1399 Roger Trewythenick John Pengersick
Parliament of 1401 ? ?
Parliament of 1402 Roger Trewythenick John Masselegh
First Parliament of 1404 (Jan)
Second Parliament of 1404 (Oct)
Parliament of 1406 Walter Badrygy William Penalewy
Parliament of 1407 John Pengersick Matthew Skewys
Parliament of 1410
Parliament of 1411 John Glasen Thomas Pellour
First Parliament of 1413 (Feb)
Second Parliament of 1413 (May) Thomas Treffidowe Thomas Polglas
First Parliament of 1414 (Apr)
Second Parliament of 1414 (Nov) John Clink John Baker
Parliament of 1415 or 1416 (Mar) John Glasen Robert Treage
Parliament of 1416 (Oct)
Parliament of 1417 John Glasen Thomas Gurtaboys
Parliament of 1419 Robert Treage John Cork
Parliament of 1420 William Richard William Trethake II
First Parliament of 1421 (May) Thomas Carathyn John Treffridowe
Second Parliament of 1421 (Dec) William Penpons Adam Vivian
Parliament of 1529 Edmund Smith John Holdiche
Parliament of 1542 William Trewynnard  ?
Parliament of 1545 John Arundell Richard Heywood
Parliament of 1547 Thomas Mildmay John Trengove
First Parliament of 1553 (Mar) Thomas Mildmay Robert Docatt
Second Parliament of 1553 (Oct) William Bendlowes Henry Trengove alias Nance
First Parliament of 1554 (Apr) William St Aubyn John Kyme
Second Parliament of 1554 (Nov) Reginald Mohun William St Aubin
Parliament of 1555 Thomas Mildmay Edward Neville
Parliament of 1558 Peter Martyn
Parliament of 1559 John Trendeneck Francis Goldsmith
Parliament of 1562-1567 William Porter John Dudley
Parliament of 1571 Sir Edward Bray John Gayer
Parliament of 1572-1581 William Killigrew John Vivian (died c.1578)
Parliament of 1584-1585 Humphrey Prideaux William Lewis
Parliament of 1586-1587 Hannibal Vyvyan William Godolphin
Parliament of 1588-1589 William Buggin Christopher Osborne
Parliament of 1593 William Gardiner Ralph Knevitt
Parliament of 1597-1598 William Cooke Nicholas Saunders
Parliament of 1601 William Twysden Hannibal Vyvyan
Parliament of 1604-1611 Sir John Leigh John Bogans (died)
Robert Naunton (from 1606)
Addled Parliament (1614) Sir Robert Killigrew Henry Bulstrode
Parliament of 1621-1622 Sir Thomas Stafford William Noy
Happy Parliament (1624-1625) Thomas Carey Francis Carew
Useless Parliament (1625)
Parliament of 1625-1626 Francis Godolphin
Parliament of 1628-1629 Sidney Godolphin William Noy
No Parliament summoned 1629-1640

MPs 1640–1832

Year 1st Member 1st Party 2nd Member 2nd Party
April 1640 Sidney Godolphin Royalist William Godolphin
November 1640 Francis Godolphin Royalist
February 1643 Sidney Godolphin killed in battle - seat vacant
January 1644 Francis Godolphin disabled from sitting - seat vacant
1646 John Penrose John Thomas
December 1648 Penrose not recorded as having sat after Pride's Purge Thomas excluded in Pride's Purge - seat vacant
1653 Unrepresented in the Barebones Parliament and the First and Second Parliaments of the Protectorate
January 1659 Robert Rous Thomas Juxon
May 1659 Helston was unrepresented in the restored Rump
April 1660 Anthony Rous Alexander Penhellick
July 1660 Thomas Robinson (Sir) Francis Godolphin
1661 Sir Peter Killigrew
1665 Sir William Godolphin, Bt
1668 Sidney Godolphin Tory
Feb 1679 Sir Vyell Vyvyan, Bt
Sep 1679 Sidney Godolphin Tory
1681 Charles Godolphin
1685 Sidney Godolphin
1689 Sir John St Aubyn, Bt
1695 Francis Godolphin
1698 Sidney Godolphin
1701 Francis Godolphin[5]
1708 John Evelyn
Oct 1710 George Granville [6] Tory
Dec 1710 Robert Child
1713 Henry Campion [7] Charles Coxe [8]
1714 Thomas Tonkin Alexander Pendarves Tory
1715 Sir Gilbert Heathcote, Bt Whig Sidney Godolphin
1722 Sir Robert Raymond Tory Walter Carey
1724 Sir Clement Wearg Whig
1726 Exton Sayer
1727 John Evelyn John Harris
1741 Francis Godolphin Thomas Walker
1747 (Sir) John Evelyn [9]
1766 William Windham
1767 William Evelyn [10]
1768 The Earl of Clanbrassil
1774 [11] Marquess of Carmarthen Tory Francis Owen
1775 Francis Cust Philip Yorke
1780 Jocelyn Deane [12]
March 1781 Richard Barwell
June 1781 Lord Hyde Tory
1784 John Rogers
1786 Roger Wilbraham
1787 James Burges
1790 Sir Gilbert Elliot, Bt Whig Stephen Lushington [13] Whig
1795 Charles Abbot Tory [14]
1796 Richard Richards
1799 Lord Francis Osborne
1802 Viscount Fitzharris John Penn
1804 Davies Giddy
1805 Viscount Primrose
April 1806 Sir John Shelley, Bt
November 1806 Nicholas Vansittart [15] Tory John Du Ponthieu
January 1807 Thomas Brand Whig
May 1807 Sir John St Aubyn, Bt Richard Richards
July 1807 The Lord Dufferin and Claneboye
1812 William Horne Whig Hugh Hammersley
1818 Lord James Townshend Tory Harrington Hudson
1820 The Marquess of Carmarthen
1830 Sir Samuel Brooke-Pechell, Bt Whig
1831 Sackville Lane-Fox Tory
1832 Representation reduced to one member

MPs 1832–1885

Election Member Party
1832 Representation reduced to one member
1832 Sackville Lane-Fox Conservative
1835 Lord James Townshend Conservative
1837 Viscount Cantelupe Conservative
1840 by-election John Basset Conservative
1841 Sir Richard Vyvyan, Bt Conservative
1857 Charles Trueman Liberal
1859 John Jope Rogers[16] Conservative
1865 Adolphus William Young Liberal
1866 by-election[17] Robert Campbell Liberal
Sir William Brett Conservative
1868 Adolphus William Young Liberal
1880 William Molesworth-St Aubyn Conservative
1885 constituency abolished



  1. The London Gazette: no. 19008. p. 2836. 28 December 1832.
  2. Toy, Henry, Spencer (1912). The Ancient Borough of Helston. Helston: John Lander & Son. Retrieved 19 August 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 "HAMELY (HAMYLYN), Sir John (aft.1324-1399), of Wimborne St. Giles, Dorset". History of Parliament Online. Retrieved 30 May 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. http://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/1386-1421/member/bodrugan-william-i
  5. Styled Viscount Rialton from 1706. He was re-elected for Helston in 1708, but had also been elected for Oxfordshire, which he chose to represent, and did not sit again for Helston
  6. Granville was also elected for Cornwall, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Pontefract
  7. Campion was also elected for Sussex, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Helston
  8. Coxe was also elected for Gloucester, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Helston
  9. Succeeded to a baronetcy, 1763
  10. Major-General from 1770
  11. On petition, Carmarthen and Owen were adjudged not to have been duly elected, and their opponents, Cust and Yorke, were declared to have been duly elected instead
  12. Dean was elected at a disputed election where the returning officer made a double return. Although eventually adjudged to have been duly elected, he never sat as he had died before the case was heard.
  13. Sir Stephen Lushington from 1791
  14. Speaker from 1802
  15. Vansittart was also elected for Old Sarum, which he chose to represent, and never sat for Helston
  16. Marchant, E. C. (1897). "Rogers, John (1778–1856), divine, by E. C. Marchant". Dictionary of National Biography Vol. IL. Smith, Elder & Co. Retrieved 13 December 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. At the Helston by-election, 1866, both candidates polled exactly the same number of votes. The mayor, as returning officer, gave his casting vote for the Liberal candidate Robert Campbell. As this vote was given after four o'clock, however, an appeal was lodged, and the House of Commons declared that the returning officer had no right to a casting vote, and that he should have returned the names of both tied candidates. On scrutiny of the votes, one vote was struck off Campbell's total, and the Conservative candidate Sir William Baliol Brett declared duly elected.