An Aberrant Candidate: I
Too Many Electors sit at Home “Reading my Books” ’, St James’s Gazette, 5 March 1904. In the 1904 London County Council elections Shaw and Sir William Geary, Bt (1854–1944), barrister and author, were the Progressive candidates for South St Pancras. They were defeated at the polls held on the day the following interview was published. The Education Acts passed by Balfour’s Conservative government (in which Sidney Webb had been closely involved) were a key issue in the elections. The 1902 Act had made the counties and county boroughs responsible for the whole range of education, while the 1903 Act did the same for the LCC in London. One provision of the Acts — the funding of voluntary schools from the rates — had particularly upset the Nonconformists, who resented giving any aid to Anglican schools. In a widespread campaign of passive resistance some objectors refused to pay their rates.