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Delaval family

Admiral Sir Ralph Delaval

He was buried in the nave of Westminster Abbey on 23rd January 1707 but he seems never to have an inscribed gravestone. He was the eldest son of William Delaval (6th son of Sir Ralph Delaval of Seaton Delaval in Northumberland) and his wife Mary (Riddell). In 1690 he was promoted to Admiral of the Blue and knighted, also becoming one of the Lords of the Admiralty and a Member of Parliament. He served in Guinea and the West Indies and was at the battle of Bantry Bay. By his wife Hester (Major) he had two sons and three daughters, several of whom were baptised at St Martin in the Fields church in London. Daughters Hester (Lucas) and Mary administered his will.

John Hussey, Baron Delaval and family

John, his wife Susanna and daughter Sarah are buried in a vault beneath the chapel of St Paul in Westminster Abbey. The gravestone reads:

Here lieth the body of the Right Honourable Susannah Baroness Delaval who departed this life October 1st 1783. Here lieth the body of the Right Honourable Sarah Hussey Countess of Tyrconnel Obiit October 7th 1800. The Right Honourable John Hussey Baron Delaval Obiit May 17th 1808

John was a son of Francis Blake Delaval and his wife Rhoda (Apreece). Baronet of Ford in Northumberland he succeeded to the family estates on the death of his brother Sir Francis, Baron Delaval of Seaton Delaval. He was educated at Westminster School (as were his brothers Francis, George, Henry, Ralph, Robert and Thomas), Eton College and Cambridge and became a politician. In 1750 he married Susanna (nee Robinson and widow of John Potter) at Duke Street chapel in Westminster. His second wife was Susanna Knight but as he had no sons the title became extinct. His daughter Sarah married George Carpenter, 2nd Earl of Tyrconnel in 1780.

Edward Hussey Delaval

Brother of the John named above he was buried in the nave of Westminster Abbey. His gravestone is in the centre aisle near to the grave of Sir Charles Barry and just gives his name and date of death. The nave floor was re-laid in 1834 and most of the larger gravestones were replaced with small markers. The original inscription on his stone read:

Edward Hussey Delaval Esqr.[Esquire}. Died 14th August 1814 in the 86th year of his age

After education at Westminster School and Cambridge university he devoted his energies to philosophical and scientific studies, including electricity and optics, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society. Benjamin Franklin was one of his supporters. He married Sarah Scott and their daughter was Sarah who married James Gunman. His nephew Sir Jacob Astley inherited his estates.

Further reading for several members of the family

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004 for Sir Ralph, John and Edward Delaval.

Seaton Delaval Hall was acquired for the nation by The National Trust and is open to the public.


Politician; sailor


Nave; Chapel of St Paul

Memorial Type

Grave; vault

Delaval family
John, Susanna and Sarah Delaval grave

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2018 Dean and Chapter of Westminster

The work can be tough, but even the cold and rain don’t bother me as I enjoy it so much. I love every day that I spend at the Abbey – just being here makes me smile.


Tim - Gardener

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