George Hume

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This article is about the politician. For the American businessman and philanthropist, see George H. Hume.
George Hopwood Hume

Sir George Hopwood Hume (24 May 1866 – 13 September 1946) was a British Conservative politician and leader of the London County Council.[1][2]

He was born in the Ukrainian city of Poltava, then in the Russian Empire. His father was George Hume, a Scottish mechanical engineer, and British vice consul at Kiev and Kharkov.[1][2] He was educated in Russia, Switzerland and at the Finsbury Technical College, London. He was apprenticed as an electrical engineer at Siemens Brothers, later studying law and was called to the bar at the Middle Temple in 1900.[1] In 1901 he married Jeanne Alice Ladrierre of Lausanne, who died in 1922.[1][2]

Political career[edit]

Greenwich Borough Council[edit]

Hume entered politics in November 1900 when he was elected to the newly constituted Greenwich Borough Council as a member of the Conservative-backed Moderate grouping. He topped the poll in the Charlton ward, and became leader as the Moderates took control of the new council.[2][3]

London County Council[edit]

In March 1910 Hume was elected to the London County Council to represent Greenwich. He was a member of the majority Municipal Reform Party, the title used by the Conservatives, on the county council. He was re-elected in 1913, and was appointed chairman of the Highways Committee. In this capacity in May 1914 he presided over a ceremony to commission new turbines at the Greenwich Power Station of the London County Council Tramways.[4][5]

Leader of the council[edit]

In 1918 Hume succeeded Ronald Collet Norman as leader of the Municipal Reformers and thus the council. Although the party had a majority of seats, they had formed a wartime coalition with the opposition Progressives. Hume, who was re-elected in 1919, continued this agreement until 1922.[1][6] Hume was elevated to the rank of county alderman in 1922 which he was to hold until his death. In 1924 he was knighted.[1] In 1925 he resigned as council leader, and in 1926 was elected to the ceremonial post of Chairman of the L.C.C.[7]

Member of parliament for Greenwich[edit]

In 1922 Hume was nominated as Conservative candidate for the parliamentary constituency of Greenwich.[8] He was elected by a large majority over his Labour Party opponent, Edward Palmer.[9] A further election was held in 1923, and Palmer unseated Hume.[10] Hume unseated Palmer at the 1924 election, only for the situation to be reversed in 1929.[11] In 1931 Hume regained the seat, with Palmer's vote reduced by the presence of a Communist candidate, and was re-elected four years later.[1][12][13]

Apart from his municipal and parliamentary offices, Hume was a member of the London and Home Counties Traffic Advisory Committee, the Thames Conservancy Board and the London and Home Counties Joint Electricity Authority.[2]

In 1932 he married Dorothy Hunt Blundell.[1] In 1938 he indicated his intention to stand down at the next election. In the event, elections were postponed due to the Second World War, and he remained in the Commons until 1945.[1]

Sir George Hume died at his home at Blackheath, London in September 1946, aged 80.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Pottle, Mark (2006). "Hume, Sir George Hopwood (1866–1946), politician". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 6 September 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Sir George Hume. Long Record of Public Service.". The Times. 14 September 1946. p. 7. 
  3. ^ "The London Borough Elections". The Times. 2 November 1900. p. 4. 
  4. ^ "London County Council Election". The Times. 7 March 1913. p. 10. 
  5. ^ "Greenwich Pier Improvements". The Times. 28 May 1914. p. 6. 
  6. ^ "L.C.C. Elections". The Times. 8 March 1919. p. 14. 
  7. ^ "London County Council. The Restriction Of Omnibuses. New Chairman Elected.". The Times. 10 March 1926. p. 16. 
  8. ^ "The Nominations. 1,387 Candidates In The Field. Complete List.". The Times. 6 November 1922. p. 20. 
  9. ^ "The General Election. First Returns, Polls In The Boroughs, Heavy Voting". The Times. 16 November 1922. p. 6. 
  10. ^ "The General Election. First Returns, Polls In The Boroughs, Liberal Gains". The Times. 7 December 1923. p. 6. 
  11. ^ "The General Election. First Returns, Polls In The Boroughs". The Times. 31 October 1924. p. 6. 
  12. ^ "Greenwich And Woolwich: Arsenal Workers' Votes". The Times. 26 October 1931. p. 7. 
  13. ^ "The General Election First Returns, Polling In The Boroughs". The Times. 15 November 1935. p. 8. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir Ion Benn, Bt
Member of Parliament for Greenwich
Succeeded by
Edward Timothy Palmer
Preceded by
Edward Timothy Palmer
Member of Parliament for Greenwich
Succeeded by
Edward Timothy Palmer
Preceded by
Edward Timothy Palmer
Member of Parliament for Greenwich
Succeeded by
Joseph Reeves
Political offices
Preceded by
Oscar Emanuel Warburg
Chairman of the London County Council
1926 – 1927
Succeeded by
John Maria Gatti