The 7th Baron was the eldest son of Francis Willoughby of Hesley, Nottinghamshire, and a great-grandson of the 1st Baron Middleton . He entered the Royal Navy in 1782, retiring as Captain in 1840. He succeeded his cousin, the 6th Baron, in 1835. He died on 5 November 1856 and was succeeded by his cousin, Henry Willoughby, as 8th Baron Middleton .
He never married. He had one illegitimate daughter, Octavia, m 1stly in 1853 Major John Richard Smyth Wallis, and 2ndly in 1872 Sir George H. Beaumont
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