Henry Peter Brougham

(1st Baron Brougham and Vaux)

1778 - 1868

Inventor, lawyer and politician. Born on St. Andrew Square in Edinburgh, Brougham was the grand-nephew of William Robertson (1721-93), the Principal of the University of Edinburgh. One of his aunts was married to the noted architect William Adam (1689 - 1748). Brougham was educated at the High School in Edinburgh and the University there. He became a barrister in London (1808) and was elected a Member of Parliament (1810). Brougham served as Lord Chancellor between 1830 and 1834, and was responsible for promoting the Representation of the People Act (or Reform Act) of 1832, which began to remove a system of patronage which saw small constituencies having undue influence in parliament, and the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833. He is also remembered for bringing about significant legal reforms, proposing educational reform and as a superb orator. He also holds the record for the longest speech ever given in the House of Commons, running to six hours, by the end of which his audience was described as 'thin and exhausted'.

He is credited with designing the Brougham, a popular closed four-wheel carriage, was one of the founders of University College London and Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh (1859-68).

He bought property in Cannes in the South of France and brought about significant development there, making it a sanatorium to the wealthy of Europe. He died there and lies buried in the Grand Jas Cemetery.

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