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3 Oct 2014
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This Sceptred Isle

Taxing the Colonies and Smuggling at Home
Pitt the Elder, now the Earl of Chatham, became lord privy seal. He was not at all well, suffering from gout and bouts of desperate depression. By1768 he was not really in control, Grafton was now Prime Minister. Ministers did not rally round the ailing Pitt - it was not until Pitt the Younger became Prime Minister that collective Cabinet responsibility became a reality.

The population was growing and with it the towns and cities. Gradually the habit of emptying chamber pots from upstairs windows was replaced with good drainage and common sewers this helped to raise the average life expectancy from thirty-one or thirty-two to thirty nine.

Edmund Burke
Edmund Burke
EDMUND BURKE (1729-1797)

  • Statesman and philosopher
  • Son of an Irish barrister
  • Became a writer and political theorist
  • His work was often contradictory and always evolving
  • As an MP was known for his clumsy oratory that meant that his speeches were best read
  • Was remembered for his thoughts on liberty and consistent attacks on ther maladministration of Government
  • Among his lasting works, Reflections On The French Revolution was required reading in 1790
  • Burke and Disraeli remain the fathers of Conservative thinking

did you know?
In 1763 the total population of England and Wales was about seven million people? Today, more than that number live in Greater London.


  1. That the Council should immediately form the principal street of the plot now to be feued in the manner of a turn pike road; and so proceed in the same way with the other plots, as they come to be feued, for the conveniency of the feuars.
  2. That the pavement on each side of the street should be ten feet broad, not to rise higher than a foot above the level of the street, and that there should be no posts erected betwixt the street and the pavement.
  3. That the pavement ought to be laid and repaired at the expense of the proprietors of houses, in the same way as practised in the Old Town.
  4. That the Council should execute a common sewer in the middle of the street, to be kept up at the expense of the city; and that the feuars should have liberty to make a communication sewer from their respective houses to the said common sewer, to be kept up at their expense.
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1756 Pitt the Elder becomes Secretary at War
Seven Years' War starts
Black Hole of Calcutta
1757 Militia Act
Calcutta recaptured
1760 George II dies
George III becomes king
Wolfe dies at Quebec
1761 Pitt the Elder falls from power
1762 Newcastle resigns
Bute becomes Prime Minister
1763Bute resigns
Grenville becomes Prime Minister
1765 Rockingham becomes Prime Minister
Hargreaves invents the spinning jenny
1766Grafton becomes nominal Prime Minister
1768Royal Academy of Arts founded
1769 Captain Cook lands at Tahiti
1770Lord North becomes Prime Minister

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