Peter Thellusson senior

27th Jun 1737 - 21st Jul 1797


Huguenot son of Isaac Thellusson, "one of the foremost financiers in France". Settled in England in 1761, naturalised in 1762. Married Ann Woodford, second daughter of Matthew Woodford (her brother Ralph later became Governor of Trinidad). Died 21/07/1797 at his Plaistow estate in Bromley, Kent. Known for his will in which he left the bulk of his fortune in trust to the three eldest male descendants of his three sons where the fortune was to accumulate until the death of the last male grandson, leading to decades of legal challenge.

  1. Peter Thellusson's entanglements in the Caribbean slave-economy are detailed in work by Susanne Seymour and Sheryllynne Haggerty commissioned by English Heritage, including his interests in the Conference estate in St Andrews Grenada (from 1768), Windmill Hill on Montserrat (1772-1796) and Bacolet on Grenada (1772-1820). 'However, both [these latter two] resulted in considerable losses to Thellusson or his family, demonstrating the problematic nature of such property.'

  2. Peter Thellusson and his partner John Cossart were parties to a deed of 1775 whereby John Lessl[e]y pledged his property on Nevis including an estate of 120 acres in St Thomas Lowland that he had bought from Thomas Bridgwater of Grenada (q.v.) and 117 named enslaved people to secure his debt of £2750 to Thellusson and Cossart.

  3. Peter Thellusson with John and Anthony Fonblanque were co-owners of a slaving voyage in the Lottery arriving in Grenada in 1766 with 172 enslaved Africans.


Kenneth Cozens, 'Peter Thellusson - Bank of England Director & London Sugar Refiner' available at [accessed 21/05/2015]; 'Peter Isaac Thellusson (1761-1808) in History of Parliament Online, [accessed 21/04/2015]; Edward Irving Carlyle, rev. Francois Crouzet, 'Peter Thellusson (1737-1797), merchant", ODNB.

  1. S. Seymour and S. Haggerty, ‘Property, power and authority: the implicit and explicit slavery connections of Bolsover Castle and Brodsworth Hall in the 18th century’, in Slavery and the British Country House, ed. M. Dresser and A. Hann (English Heritage, Swindon, 2013), pp. 84–8; also S. Seymour and S. Haggerty, Slavery Connections of Brodsworth Hall, 1600–1830 (report for English Heritage, 2010).

  2. Common Records 1776-1777, British Library, EAP794/1/1/16, pp. 31 et seq.

  3. TASTDB Voyage No. 91284.

Further Information

Ann Woodford
3 sons and 3 daughters including Peter Isaac Thellusson (1761-1808)
Oxford DNB Entry

Associated Estates (2)

The dates listed below have different categories as denoted by the letters in the brackets following each date. Here is a key to explain those letter codes:

  • SD - Association Start Date
  • SY - Association Start Year
  • EA - Earliest Known Association
  • ED - Association End Date
  • EY - Association End Year
  • LA - Latest Known Association
1817 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Previous owner
1768 [EA] - 1768 [LA] → Assignee

'This was acquired by Peter Thellusson and other merchant creditors, appointed as assignees by the commissioners for the estate of bankrupt London merchant John Hix in 1768. The group pledged to sell the property "with all convenient speed...and for the best Price" in order to recompense the creditors in proportion to their debts.'

Legacies Summary

Physical (3)

Country house
description →
Brodsworth, West Yorkshire, built by Charles Thellusson (1822-1885) who shared the proceeds of his great-grandfather Peter Thellusson's estate. Charles Thellussons' portion was c. £600,000,...
Country house
Plaistow House [Built] 
description →
Palladian villa at Bromley built for Peter Thellusson in the 1770s to designs of Thomas Leverton....
Country house
Rendlesham Hall [Purchased] 
description →
Rendlesham Hall, Suffolk, purchased by Peter Thellusson 'a London banker and West Indian merchant of Swiss origin' and rebuilt by his great grandson the fifth Lord Rendlesham to William Burn's...

Relationships (2)

Business partners
Father → Son

Addresses (2)

15 Philpot Lane, City of London, Middlesex, London, England
Plaistow , Bromley, Kent, South-east England, England