Chamberlain: Father of Modern Birmingham
York Membery recalls one of the great statesmen of late Victorian and Edwardian Britain.
On July 13th, 1906, Joseph Chamberlain was struck down by a stroke that left him paralysed down one side of his body. And so, at one swipe, ended the career of one of the leading political figures of the age who was still at the height of his powers.
The centenary is being marked in his adopted city of Birmingham (he was born in London) by a special opening of Highbury, the mansion in Kings Heath where he lived from 1880 until his death in 1914. The magnificent twelve-bedroom house, with its vaulted hall, was designed for Chamberlain in the Venetian Gothic style by the architect John Henry Chamberlain (no relation), while its extensive grounds were specially landscaped.