He was born the eldest son of William Wollaston, MP and his wife Elizabeth Faquier and educated at Bury St Edmunds Grammar School.
Before gaining his position in Parliament, he served as colonel of the Eastern Battalion in the Suffolk Militia. He was a close friend of artist Thomas Gainsborough, with whom he shared a love of music. Gainsborough painted Wollaston's portrait in about 1758. In 1794 to pay off a gambling debt Wollaston sold the family estate of Finborough Hall to Roger Pettiward (d.1833), whose family owned the neighbouring estate at Onehouse.
He was married to Blanche, daughter of Robert Hyde Page and sister of Sir Thomas-Hyde Page.  They had no children.
- "WOLLASTON, William (1731-97), of Finborough Hall, Suff". History of Parliament. Retrieved 21 September 2017.
- Bernard Burke, Genealogical and Heraldic Dictionary of the Landed Gentry of Great Britain. 4th ed. London : Harrison, Pall Mall, 1863. 1689
- John Bernard Burke, A Genealogical and Heraldic Dictionary of the Landed Gentry of Great Britain (1863) p. 1689
- John Nichols, Illustrations of the Literary History of the Eighteenth Century (1817) p. 834
- Augustine Page, John Kirby, A supplement to The Suffolk traveller [of J. Kirby] (Ipswich, 1844) p. 536
- Leigh Rayment's Peerage Pages – Peerages beginning with "I" [self-published source][better source needed]
- Bookplate of William Wollaston Rare Books of the Shimeon Brisman Collection in Jewish Studies, Washington University
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| Member of Parliament for Ipswich |
With: Thomas Staunton
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