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Robert Aglionby Slaney

Robert Aglionby Slaney (9 June 1791 – 19 May 1862)[1] was a British barrister and Whig politician from Shropshire. He sat in the House of Commons as a Member of Parliament for the borough of Shrewsbury for most of the period from 1826 until his death in 1862.

Early lifeEdit

Slaney was the eldest son of Robert Slaney (1764–1834) of Hatton Grange, Shropshire, and his wife, Mary, daughter of Thomas Mason of Shrewsbury.[2] He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge,[3] and was called to the bar in 1817 at Lincoln's Inn.[2]


He was first elected at the 1826 general election,[4] and was re-elected at the next three general elections,[4][5][6][7] until his defeat at the 1835 general election by the Conservative Party candidate John Cressett-Pelham.[8] He was re-elected in 1837,[9] but did not stand in 1841, when the seat was won by Benjamin Disraeli.[8] He won the seat again in 1847,[10] but did not stand in 1852.[8] He was High Sheriff of Shropshire in 1854.[11]

Slaney was returned again at the 1857 general election,[12] re-elected in 1859,[13] and held the seat until his death, aged 70.[1]

Among other achievements, Slaney was instrumental in setting up the Select Committee on Public Health of 1840, which paved the way for the later Board of Health;[14] and in fostering the Industrial and Provident Societies Partnership Act 1852, sometimes known as Slaney's Act.[15]

Attending the opening of the London International Exhibition on 1 May 1862, he fell through a gap in a platform floor and injured his right leg, despite which he continued to view the exhibition and attended Parliament up until the 8th. He died, at his London house in Mayfair, from gangrene (then reported as 'mortification') that set in.[16]


His residence was listed in 1857 as Walford Manor, Shropshire.[12] Slaney had three daughters, amongst whom his estate was shared.[17] The youngest, Frances Catherine, married William Kenyon, who as a condition of Slaney's will took the additional surname of Slaney.[17] The eldest, Elizabeth Frances (died c. 1870), married the naturalist Thomas Campbell Eyton, a Deputy Lieutenant of Shropshire.[18]


  1. ^ a b Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "S" (part 3)
  2. ^ a b Clarke, Ernest (2004). "'Slaney, Robert Aglionby (1792–1862)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 9 November 2010.
  3. ^ "Slaney, Robert Aglionby (SLNY809RA)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  4. ^ a b Stooks Smith, Henry. (1973) [1844-1850]. Craig, F. W. S. (ed.). The Parliaments of England (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 277–278. ISBN 0-900178-13-2.
  5. ^ "No. 18720". The London Gazette. 24 August 1830. p. 1809.
  6. ^ "No. 18810". The London Gazette. 7 June 1831. p. 1107.
  7. ^ "No. 19010". The London Gazette. 4 January 1833. p. 27.
  8. ^ a b c Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1977]. British parliamentary election results 1832–1885 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 277. ISBN 0-900178-26-4.
  9. ^ "No. 19530". The London Gazette. 8 August 1837. p. 2082.
  10. ^ "No. 20765". The London Gazette. 17 August 1847. p. 2996.
  11. ^ "Sheriffs For The Year 1854". The Times. London. 2 February 1854. pp. 7, col F.
  12. ^ a b "No. 21983". The London Gazette. 31 March 1857. p. 1181.
  13. ^ "No. 22258". The London Gazette. 3 May 1859. p. 1812.
  14. ^ E Halévy, Victorian Years (1961) p. 176
  15. ^ C Raven, Christian Socialism, 1848-1854 (1968) p. 289
  16. ^ "The late Mr. Slaney, M.P.". Shrewsbury Chronicle. 23 May 1862. p. 4.
  17. ^ a b "No. 22648". The London Gazette. 29 July 1862. p. 3777.
  18. ^ "Obituary: Thomas Campbell Eyton". The Times. London. 29 October 1880. pp. 6, col A.

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