Birth of C.F.G. Masterman, journalist, author and Liberal politician

Charles Frederick Gurney Masterman was three times a Liberal MP – for West Ham North 1906-11, Bethnal Green South West 1911-14 and Manchester Rusholme 1923-24. A keen social reformer Masterman’s writings including From the Abyss and The Condition of England influenced New Liberal thinking. In parliament Masterman was a key supporter of Lloyd George, helping to draft the 1909 “people’s” budget and piloting the 1911 National Insurance Act through the Commons. Appointed to the cabinet as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1914 Masterman lost the ensuing by-election (prior to 1918 all ministers had to resign and fight a by-election on their appointment) and a second forcing his resignation. Out of parliament Masterman headed the British War Propaganda Bureau from 1915. After the war there was a return to journalism and a brief return to parliament but his health declined and he died in 1927 aged only 54.