Sir William Henry Clinton was born in 1769 in Lyons, France.
The eldest son of General Sir Henry Clinton, Sir William Henry Clinton and his younger brother were able to start building a career on their father’s good reputation. Soon they built their own reputations and Sir William was sent on a number of secret missions abroad. However, despite his well regard Sir William was passed over for a peerage and also missed out on several positions such as the governorship of Gibraltar. Things turned around in 1823 when he moved to Cokenach at Barkway, near Royston, Hertfordshire, and saw himself as a gentleman farmer.
Sir William was appointed Lieutenant General of the Ordnance in 1825 which enabled him to afford improvements to his new home. Whilst in the role of Lieutenant General of the Ordnance Sir William was given command of 600 men who were sent to Portugal. He returned from Portugal in 1829 and stepped down from his role with the Ordnance. Not long after this, the position was abolished. Possibly as compensation, he was offered the governorship of Madras, which he had to refuse due to ill-health.
In 1842, at the age of 73, he became Lieutenant-General of Chelsea Hospital in London. Sir William died four years later at his home, Cokenach.