The son of Samuel and Mary Hanson (née Choppin), Reginald was educated at Tonbridge School, Rugby School and Trinity College, Cambridge (MA, LLD). The then headmaster of Rugby School Dr Frederick Temple (later Archbishop of Canterbury) said of Hanson on his departure, "I have a most sincere and warm regard for him. The manly desire he shows to get rid of his faults, and to do his duty, will always deserve the respect of all who know him. There are a few from who I part with so much regret at my own loss". Indeed, this sense of duty was upheld and he held numerous positions of public office.
Following graduation, the young Reginald joined the Commercial Union Assurance Company (now part of Aviva plc) which was previously co-founded by his father Samuel. Within a year he was appointed to the Board of directors where he remained until 1882. By this time, he had already joined the family wholesale grocery business, Samuel Hanson & Son Limited.
He held a number of civic posts notably as an Alderman of Billingsgate (London) from 1880 and Sheriff of London and Middlesex, 1881-82. From 1882-85 Hanson was a member of the London School Board. In 1886 he was elected Lord Mayor of London, during which time Queen Victoria celebrated her Jubilee year. In 1887, Sir Reginald entertained Her Majesty at the Mansion House where he was created a Baronet by her, having previously been knighted. Guests that day included the explorer Henry Morton Stanley and Judge Thomas Hughes author of Tom Brown's Schooldays.
He died in 1905 and is buried in Highgate Cemetery, leaving behind two sons, Gerald (Sir Gerald Stanhope Hanson, 2nd Baronet), Francis (Sir Francis Stanhope Hanson - Knight Bachelor) and two daughters, Violet and Maud.
- "Hason, Reginald (HN858R)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
- "The London School Board Election". Daily News. 28 November 1882.
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Reginald Hanson
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
Thomas Charles Baring
|Member of Parliament for The City of London
With: Hucks Gibbs 1891–1892
Alban Gibbs 1892–1906
Sir Joseph Cockfield Dimsdale
|Baronetage of the United Kingdom|
(of Bryanston Square)
Sir Gerald Stanhope Hanson