William Kenrick (Birmingham MP)

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William Kenrick

William Kenrick (Birmingham).jpg
Member of Parliament
for Birmingham North
In office
1885 – 1899
Privy Councillor
Assumed office
Personal details
Born(1831-06-08)8 June 1831
West Bromwich, Staffordshire, England
Died31 July 1919(1919-07-31) (aged 88)
Harborne, Edgbaston, Warwickshire, England
Political partyLiberal Unionist Party
ChildrenCecily, Millicent Mary, Wifred Byng, Gerald William
OccupationHardware manufacturer, Member of Parliament

William Kenrick PC (8 June 1831 – 31 July 1919) was an English iron founder and hardware manufacturer. He was a Liberal Unionist Party politician who was active in local government in Birmingham and sat in the House of Commons from 1885 to 1899.


Kenrick was born at West Bromwich, Staffordshire, the son of Archibald Kenrick, JP (1798–1878), an iron founder, and his wife, Anne Paget (1798–1864). He became a director of the family firm, Archibald Kenrick & Sons.

He also became active in local politics, becoming a town councillor in 1870, alderman in 1872 and mayor of Birmingham from 1877 to 1878. In the 1885 general election he became MP for Birmingham North. He held the seat until he resigned in 1899 when he became a Privy Councillor.[1] In 1911 he was given Honorary Freedom of the City of Birmingham.[2]

Kenrick had educational and artistic interests. He was a Governor of King Edward's School, Birmingham and was closely connected with the Arts and Crafts movement. He was Chairman of the Museum and School of Arts Committee and was visited by William Morris in 1880.[3] In 1895 he became a director of the Birmingham Guild of Handicraft when it became a limited company.[4]

Kenrick died at his home, The Grove, Park Lane, Harborne, Edgbaston, Warwickshire. The panelling of a room of his house is in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.[5]

Marriage and family connections[edit]

On 26 August 1862, Kenrick married Mary Chamberlain (1938–1918), Joseph's sister, at the Union Chapel, Islington.[6] His sister Harriet had married Joseph Chamberlain in July 1861; they were the parents of statesman Austen Chamberlain. After Harriet's death in 1863, Chamberlain married Harriet and William's cousin, Florence Kenrick, in 1868. Joseph and Florence were the parents of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain.



  1. ^ Chamberlain genealogy
  2. ^ Birmingham City Council - Media
  3. ^ William Morris Internet Archive - Chronology
  4. ^ The Arts and Crafts Home - Chronolology
  5. ^ "Panelled room from The Grove in Harborne". V&A Collections. Retrieved 21 June 2017.
  6. ^ "Rt. Hon. William Kenrick". ThePeerage.com. Retrieved 17 March 2010.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
New constituency
Member of Parliament for Birmingham North
Succeeded by
John Middlemore
Party political offices
Preceded by
William Harris
Chairman of the National Liberal Federation
Succeeded by
Walter Foster