Colonel Sir Harry Goring Bt
Born in Sussex in 1679, Harry Goring succeeded to the baronetcy at the age of 33. He served as Member of Parliament for Horsham from 1707 to 1708, for Steyning from 1709 to 1714 and for Horsham again until June 1715. Goring’s political duties did not prevent him from serving in the Army, and it was on 1st March 1711 that he was promoted by purchase to the command of Churchill’s Marines.
He was aged 32. During his period of command, Goring’s Marines were employed by detachments at sea and on garrison duties ashore in the traditional role of the Marine Corps. Consequent upon the Treaty of Utrecht, which concluded the War of the Spanish Succession in 1713, the Regiment was threatened with disbandment, and Colonel Goring himself was placed on the half-pay list. The following year, after the death of Queen Anne on 1st August, there was an upsurge of Jacobite activity with the aim of restoring the Stuart dynasty. The situation was sufficiently serious for six new regiments to be raised, and for the three senior Marine Regiments, including Goring’s, to be restored to the Active List as Regiments of the Line. Goring’s Marine Regiment thus became the 31st Regiment of Foot, and Sir Harry was re-appointed to the colonelcy in 1715.
Unfortunately, Colonel Goring was suspected of Jacobite sympathies. In June that year, as a result of political pressure, he lost his seat in the House of Commons and three months later was obliged to sell his commission. On his retirement Sir Harry, then 36, returned to Sussex. When he died at Horsham on 12th November 1731 at the age of 52, he was the father of nine sons. Lady Goring survived him by another 37 years, and died at the age of 100.