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Robert Vernon Atherton Gwillym

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Robert Vernon Atherton Gwillym (c.1741–1783) was a British country landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1774 to 1780.

Gwillym was the second son of Robert Gwillym of Langstone, Herefordshire[1] and his wife Elizabeth Atherton (1721-1763), daughter of Richard Atherton (1700-1726) and Elizabeth Farrington of Atherton Hall.[2] He is a direct descendant of Richard Atherton.

Robert Gwillym of Atherton and His Family (1745-1747)
Robert Gwillym of Atherton and His Family (1745-1747)

He married Henrietta Maria Legh, daughter of Peter Legh (1706–1792] [3] of Lyme Park in January 1763. He succeeded his brother William in 1771, and inherited Atherton Hall, Leigh.[4] That same year he is listed as a subscriber to a journal on travels to America and of agriculture and plantations. It is likely that he invested in such enterprises, as did the other members of the Atherton family.[5]

At the 1774 general election, Gwillym was returned unopposed as Member of Parliament for Newton on the interest of his father-in-law. His attendance in Parliament was very infrequent as he suffered from poor health. His only recorded vote was for Wilkes's Middlesex resolution, and he is not recorded as having spoken. He did not stand at the 1780 general election.[4]

Gwillym took name of Atherton in 1779. He died in France on 9 July 1783. He and his wife Henrietta had two sons who died young and four daughters.[4] His daughter Henrietta Maria Atherton married Thomas Powys, 2nd Baron Lilford[6] on 5 December 1797 at Penwortham, Lancashire and they had twelve children.[7]

Henrietta Maria Vernon Atherton, 2nd Lady Lilford by John Hoppner, R.A.
Henrietta Maria Vernon Atherton, 2nd Lady Lilford by John Hoppner, R.A.



  1. ^ "Langstone Court and the Atherton Connection".
  2. ^ "Elizabeth Atherton, daughter of William and Elizabeth Farington. Wigan Arts and Heritage Service".
  3. ^ "Peter Legh MP, father in law".
  4. ^ a b c "GWILLYM, Robert Vernon Atherton (?1741-83), of Atherton Hall, nr. Manchester". History of Parliament Online. Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  5. ^ Kalm, Peter (1771). "Travels into North America; Containing its Natural History, and a Circumstantial Account of its Plantations and Agriculture in General, with the Civil, Ecclesiastical and Commercial State of the Country, the Manners of the Inhabitants, and Several Curious and Important Remarks on Various Subjects. Part 2". p. 10.
  6. ^ Thomas Benolt, William Langton (1843). The Visitation of Lancashire and a Part of Cheshire: Made in the Twenty-fourth Year of the Reign of King Henry the Eighth, 1533 A.D. Chetham society. p. 87. Retrieved 5 December 2017.
  7. ^ Tim Powys-Lyb (2011) "Thomas Powys Lord Lilford",
Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Anthony James Keck
Peter Legh
Member of Parliament for Newton
With: Anthony James Keck
Succeeded by
Thomas Peter Legh
Thomas Davenport, KC
This page was last edited on 1 July 2021, at 20:18
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