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Tales From Research Part #2

Today, we continue the immortal journey of the Fonthill Abbey through a historical incidence. We know the abbey's main tower collapsed in 1825 and the whole manse was demolished thereafter. In my reality, the west wing, where the Fourth Earl of Wiltshire's room resided, was burned down by an act of revenge.

The first pages of the Great
Reform Act 1832.
The Representation of the People Act 1832, or Great Reform Act of 1832, influenced by the French Revolution, was an Act of Parliament in England and Wales which introduced more seats into the House of Commons from large cities and took away seats from smaller cities called "rotten boroughs". It also increased the amount of voters from 400,000 to 650,000.

Charles Gray
The Whigs favored reform, constitutional monarchy, and parliamentary rule. The Duke of Wellington's opposition to reform forced his resignation from office and he was succeeded by Charles Gray who pushed parliamentary reform with the Whigs. After much debate, the House of Lords and its majority of Tories, who advocate monarchism, supported the Church of England, and opposed reform, consented to the Bill after a threat by King William IV of revolution as all as the Birmingham Political Union led by Thomas Attwood (Oliver and Rosalind Attwood's father) and 15,000 supporters who threatened to use violence, to desist their opposition.

Two years later, the modern-day Conservative Party was created with similar philosophies to conservatism (traditionalism) and British unionism.

House of Commons
Effects of the Act: Since 60% of the people, specifically "male persons", were allowed to vote, 95% of the population were left without the vote, including women. In addition to being the first statutory bar to women's suffrage, most of the pocket boroughs belonged to Tory members, and tenants-at-will were created to allow voting for whomever their landlord told them to, allowing the Tories to retake the House of Commons in 1841.

The Great Reform Act of 1832 was also proceeded by protests and riots. And this is where we come to quick of our story. During a time of political turmoil and possible revolution, the middle class radicals believed in threatening the government into change. They started writing letters to influences like the Duke of Wellington and then posted them in the newspaper, waiting for a positive response from the public. After receiving no response from the politicians they wrote, the radicals moved onto the more violent means of protest. They rioted, attacking the Duke of Wellington's and the bishops' houses in London. The castle at Nottingham was burned down, as well as several serious riots appeared in Derby, Worcester, Bath, and many more. All victims were anti-reformers, Tories, and wealthy landowners. The Bristol Riot, the most destructive, consisted of 500 to 600 young men and lasted for three days, where private homes and property were looted and destroyed. Almost 100 people involved in this attack were tried in January 1832 and four men were hanged.

The 3rd Dragoon Guards violently suppressing the Bristol Riots of 1831.
Queen's Square, 20 October, 1831.

Attacks that occurred after the Reform Bill passed in 1832.

I thought there was no reason why the Earl of Wiltshire, William Kendall's late father, who was an anti-former, Tory, and wealthy aristocrat, couldn't become a victim of these attacks. 

So, this is where the real story begins...

As always, thank you for reading.

Happy writing!
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