I am a recent resident of Romsey and as such was interested to learn of the significance of Lord Palmerston whose statue is in the town square.  It appears that he was named Henry John Temple who became the Third Viscount Palmerston and was a member of Parliament from 1830 - 1865. 

I have been reading about Lord Palmerston and came across a very interesting thesis written by PhD student, Rob McGregor, in which he describes Lord Palmerston's stance and relationship with British anti-slavery.  

It shows that Lord Palmerston was so vigorously opposed to the slave trade that he described his efforts in the suppression of the slave trade as his life's proudest achievement.

I am a committee member of The Nelson Society, a society which aims to raise public awareness of the life and times of Admiral Lord Nelson, and so was interested to read of Lord Palmerston as I have just finished reading a book written and published by Chris Brett, Chairman of The Nelson Society, called Nelson And The Slave Trade which refutes the recent allegations that Nelson was pro-slavery and it reveals a plot to use Nelson's reputation, after his death, to influence debates on slavery in 1807. 

The book reveals how a personal and private letter which was written by Lord Nelson to a wealthy and powerful slave owner, was subsequently forged by the West India planters who sought to use Nelson's posthumous reputation in their campaign to halt the abolition of the slave trade.  If your readers are interested in learning more about these horrendous recent attempts to damage Nelson's reputation they can contact The Nelson Society.

I was so pleased to learn that Lord Palmerston's efforts to abolish slavery went from his entry into the Foreign Office in 1830 through to the end of his premiership in 1865.  

For more information about The Nelson Society visit its website at nelson-society.com.

Jeanette Ryder


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