Sir Benjamin Hammet by Mark McDermott
Hammet was born and educated in Taunton, where he became involved in the municipal and business life of the town and as an MP, benefactor, promoter of town improvements (especially Hammet Street) and restorer of Taunton Castle. He also became an alderman and sheriff of the City of London, where he was a banker and property developer. He acquired an estate and tinplate works in Pembrokeshire where he lived in later life. He was an assertive and controversial figure in his business and political life. One of his outstanding achievements as an MP was the abolition of the burning of women for treason, but on another occasion he was heavily fined by the City for refusing to become lord mayor.