View more on these topics

Remembering London’s generous Lord

Lord Shaftesbury was one of Victorian London’s greatest philanthropists and his impact can still be seen in the shape of buildings throughout the capital, says Simon White

This article is dedicated to someone you’ve probably never heard of but who has influenced all who live and work in London. He lived between 1801 and 1885 and his name was Anthony Ashley Cooper, the seventh Lord Shaftesbury.

Shaftesbury was one of the UK’s greatest philanthropists and among many achievements it was he who was responsible for the green timber cabmen’s shelters, which you’ll have seen at one time or another in the big city.

Looking like overgrown garden sheds, these distinctive buildings offered food and shelter to the drivers of hansom cabs and hackney carriages and can still be seen on London’s streets.

In Victorian London, cab drivers weren’t allowed to leave their vehicles when parked and as a consequence it was difficult for them to get hot meals while at work. Enter our hero Shaftesbury, who with a few philanthropic chums decided to create the Cabmen’s Shelter Fund.

Between 1875 and 1914, 61 shelters were built at a cost of around £200 each, all designed to provide cabbies with wholesome refreshments at moderate prices without recourse to them leaving their stations.

Thirteen of them are still standing, all Grade II listed buildings. Amazingly, all still perform their original function and are maintained by the fund. They are the size and shape they are because the police stipulated they could not be larger than a horse and cart as they stood on public highways. You can find them in Chelsea Embankment, Russell Square and elsewhere in the capital if you fancy a spot of sightseeing.

Our hero also championed a massive slum clearance programme. The largest of these was to the east of what is now Shaftesbury Avenue. The area used to contain some of London’s most appalling slums.

In August 1872 he funded the construction and laid the foundation stone of the first housing estate in the capital where every house had sanitation.

This allowed residents to avoid the effects of a cholera epidemic that claimed the lives of 50,000 Londoners during the 1870s. Not surprisingly, the area is still called the Shaftesbury Estate. It’s in Battersea and houses there now sell for £500,000 or more.

Make no mistake – this man was much loved and to commemorate his philanthropy, in 1893 the Shaftesbury Memorial was erected in Piccadilly Circus.

The day of his funeral was drenched with torrential rain, yet over 5,000 mourners lined the capital’s streets hatless in tribute to one of London’s greatest sons, whose impact on the city can still be seen today.

Recommended

Brokers fail to capture TCF data

Data management firm iiCon has warned that a large number of brokers still don’t have systems capable of meeting the regulator’s Treating Customers Fairly initiative. Even brokers who submit applications online will only store 50% of their client communications, with the rest being provided verballyor in email correspondence.Ross McAdam, director of iiCon, says: “An average […]

Nationwide pulls two-year fixes and trackers

Nationwide has followed in the footsteps of Abbey and repriced its product range. The mutual has withdrawn its two-year trackers and two-year fixes and increased all fixed rates by 0.20%. It has also increased the rates of selected trackers by 0.51% and 0.57%.

Fitch downgrades Alliance & Leicester

Fitch Ratings has downgraded Alliance & Leicester, saying the action reflects the lender’s weak access to funding compared with higher rated banks.A&L’s long term issuer default rating was cut to A+ from AA- and the short term IDR to F1 from F1+. The outlook for A&L’s long term IDR was changed to stable.Fitch says the […]

Exclusive Connections adds Money Partners to panel

Exclusive Connections has taken Money Partners on board its lender panel. The new arrangement means that Money Partners’ range of specialist mortgage products is now available to Exclusive Connections’ network of members. Exclusive Connections has over 50 members throughout the UK and specialises in packaging products for lenders in the sub-prime, prime and niche mortgage […]

Guide

Guide: day-to-day tasks ​— can your system manage?

This guide from Johnson Fleming will take you through the required communication and also give ideas for additional actions that will ensure your auto-enrolment project is a success. As well as highlighting what is required from a system to ensure it is up to the tasks, an overview of the following is also provided: data validation; data categorisation; employee communication; opt-in process; opt-out process; produce contribution schedule; contribution reconciliation process; upload of member data to pension provider; upload contribution to pension provider; manage salary sacrifice process; enrolment process; re-enrolment process; and management of increased employee queries.

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up