Death in office of Whig Prime Minister Henry Pelham.

A strong supporter of Robert Walpole, Pelham represented Seaford 1717-22 and Sussex 1722-54. He served as Secretary at War and Paymaster General before succeeding the Earl of Wilmington as Prime Minister in 1743. Pelham’s skill in uniting the various Whig factions earned his administration the nickname ‘The Broad Bottomed Ministry’ and ushered in a period of relative tranquillity in British politics. In office Pelham brought an end to the War of Austrian Succession and introduced major financial reforms, scaling down government expenditure and reducing the national debt. Pelham died in office after a short illness aged 59 and was succeeded by his brother the Duke of Newcastle.