Death of John Simon, 1st Viscount Simon, first leader of the Liberal Nationals
A Fellow of All Souls and a barrister by profession, Simon started his political career as Liberal MP for Walthamstow and also represented Spen Valley. He served as a law officer and Home Secretary under Asquith and remained a loyal to Asquith and antipathetic to Lloyd George. He disliked Liberal moves to support the second Labour government and after the financial crisis of 1931, Simon supported the National Government and led the breakaway Liberal National Party. He served as Foreign Secretary and Chancellor of the Exchequer. He was later Lord Chancellor. Simon is viewed badly by mainstream Liberals for splitting the party but, like Lloyd George and perhaps Nick Clegg, he saw that Liberal things could be done in government but not in opposition. The National Liberals eventually merged with the Tories and how Liberal the Nationals were remains controversial.