Why was the election result disputed?

The legitimacy of Stracey's seat in Parliament was challenged due to accusations of bribery and treating of voters. Tillett, the liberal candidate for Norwich, alleged that the liberal party had been leading by a considerable majority of up to 600 early on the day of the election. However, between the hours of 2pm and 4pm there was an influx of large groups of voters who were escorted in groups to polling booths by conservative canvassers, who had either bribed them or treated them with alcohol.

How was the result tried?

Following the raising of an election petition, evidence was collected by a judge in the Shire Hall, Norwich, between 15th and 18th January 1869. The minute books which document this evidence are now held at the Parliamentary Archives. There are three books of witness testimony, the judge's report and a supplementary report to indicate receipt in the House of Commons.

Related information

The De Montfort Project is an outreach project run by the Parliamentary Archives which explores the life and impact of local MPs and Peers on both their local area and at Parliament.