Charles Eastland de Michele
Charles Eastland de Michele (1809-1898), newspaper proprietor and consul. He became editor and co-owner, with William Byrne, of the Morning Post, after the death of Nicholas Byrne in 1832. Together they expanded papers from political reporting to science and the arts articles. Michele's greatest impact as editor was the political support he gave to his friend George Bentinck in opposing Robert Peel's revision of the Corn Laws, and promoting free trade. Unable to buy the newspaper outright he lost the Morning Post in 1849. He was subsequently appointed as British Consul to St Petersburg, prompting the Tories to claim this was a reward for supporting Palmerston. After the Crimean War the income of his consular service was halved, which left him in financial difficulties for many years. He was eventually awarded a pension, and retired from the consular service in 1866. He retired and died at Old Palace Gardens, Weybridge, and was buried in Weybridge.