Change or Continuity? Tory Governments 1822-30

How liberal were the Tory Governments of 1822 to 1830?

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  • Created by: Amy
  • Created on: 20-02-12 13:25

Changes to the cabinet in 1822

  • Lord Liverpool remained PM from 1815 til 1827.
  • After 1822 new members of the cabinet were younger than they had been before and the majority came from middle class backgrounds.
  • Cabinet included a number of capable administrators.
  • Most of new cabinet had previously held minor positions in the government so not completely new.
  • New cabinet strengthened the government;s position and standing in the House of Commons.
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Changes to the Corn Law

1828- sliding scale of duties on imported wheat to allow foreign wheat to enter Britain without any duty once the price for British wheat reached 73s a quarter.

This alienated many land-owning Tories- It was one of the endless disputes in Wellington's Cabinet.

Tory- Still Protectionism

Liberal- Trying to introduce freer trade

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Free trade!

  • Reduction of duties act- lower tariffs on imported good (like rum, silk and paper) Means loer price for consumers but still high profits for manufacturers,
  • 1823 Reprocity of duties act- reduced tariffs with countries likes Russia, Sweden and South Africa.
  • Navigation act- Non British ships could import goods into Britain, charge at port reduced.

Trade restrictions were relaxed to encourage trade within the empire.

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Money and trade unions

1826 Bank Act-To decrease numbers of notes issued, increase size of banks to create greater stability and more confidence. Led to more investment.

Repeal of combination laws- Took away ban on trade unions completely. However this led to strikes so the act was amended.

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  • Reform of penal code- Death penalty abolished for over 180 crimes (only remained for murder and treason) Jury system reorganised, no more government spies. Still public hangings and transportation.
  • Gaols Act- 1823- Removed some of worse abuse in justice system, made imprisonment a major part of the punishment system. jailers paid, prisons inspected, gender seperated, prisoners educated, health visits.
  • Metropolitan police force- Set up in 1829 in London, 1000 paid constables in non military uniform armed only with truncheons. Seen as a threat to civil liberties.
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Catholic Emancipation

Passed in 1829 by Wellington.


  • Threat of violence and even civil war if O'Connell and other Ctholics were debarred from parliament.
  • Repeal of Test and Corporations Act was ony partial and still forbade Catholics from holding important positions in state.
  • Emancipation necessary to deter uproar. 

Led to a divided parliament- Tory split-

  • Canningites and Whigs.
  • Ultra Tories
  • Peel and Wellington's supporters (many blamed those two)
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