The Lord Emmott
"The Deputy Speaker" as depicted in Vanity Fair, 19 October 1910
Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons
Chairman of Ways and Means
In office
MonarchsEdward VII
George V
Preceded bySir John Grant Lawson, 1st Baronet
Succeeded byJohn Henry Whitley
Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies
In office
23 October 1911 – 6 August 1914
MonarchGeorge V
Prime MinisterH. H. Asquith
Preceded byThe Lord Lucas of Crudwell
Succeeded byThe Lord Islington
First Commissioner of Works
In office
6 August 1914 – 25 May 1915
MonarchGeorge V
Prime MinisterH. H. Asquith
Preceded byThe Earl Beauchamp
Succeeded byLewis Vernon Harcourt
Personal details
Born8 May 1858 (1858-05-08)
Died13 December 1926 (1926-12-14) (aged 68)
Political partyLiberal
SpouseMary Lees
Alma materUniversity of London

Alfred Emmott, 1st Baron Emmott, GCMG, GBE, PC (8 May 1858 – 13 December 1926) was a British businessman and Liberal Party politician.

Background and education

The eldest surviving son of Thomas Emmott, of Brookfield, Oldham, he was educated at Grove House, Tottenham, and at the University of London. He became a partner in Emmott and Walshall, cotton spinners, of Oldham.[citation needed]

Political career

In 1881, Emmott entered the Oldham Municipal Borough Council and was mayor of the town between 1891 and 1892.[citation needed] In a by-election in 1899 he was elected Liberal Member of Parliament for Oldham, a seat he held until 1911.[1] It was a two-member seat, and Winston Churchill, who started his political career there, was the other member from 1900 to 1906.[1]

Emmott served as Chairman of Ways and Means (Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons) from 1906 to 1911[citation needed] and was sworn of the Privy Council in 1908.[2] In October 1911 he was appointed Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies by H. H. Asquith[citation needed] and the following month he was raised to the peerage as Baron Emmott, of Oldham in the County Palatine of Lancaster.[3] He remained at the Colonial Office until 1914 and was then a member of Asquith's cabinet as First Commissioner of Works between 1914 and 1915.[citation needed]

Emmott was also Director of the War Trade Department between 1915 and 1919, chaired the Royal Commission on Decimal Coinage between 1918 and 1920 and was President of the Royal Statistical Society between 1922 and 1924.[citation needed] He was a churchman, but his education at the Friends' School and his ancestry led him to sympathize with nonconformists.[citation needed] He was appointed a GCMG in 1914 and a GBE in 1917.[citation needed]

In his approach to politics, Emmott was a strong supporter of the government's social reforms.[4] This was arguably reflected in 1910 when Emmott, in response to Conservative critics who attacked the Liberals as "socialistic", retorted that "so far as we have gone in the direction of Socialism, so-called, whether it be in regard to free and compulsory education, whether it be in regard to old age pensions, or in respect of any other reform, we have not diminished, but rather added to the liberty of the individual."[5]


Lord Emmott married Mary Gertrude, a daughter of J. W. Lees, in 1887, and they had two daughters. Lady Emmott was a Justice of the Peace for London. In February 1926, aged 67, Lord Emmott died very suddenly,[citation needed] from angina pectoris, at his home in London, on a day when he was engaged to speak at a Liberal Party rally.[citation needed] The barony became extinct on his death, as he had no son.[citation needed]


Coat of arms of Alfred Emmott, 1st Baron Emmott
In front of a demi-bull Sable armed Or semee of annulets and gorged with a collar gemel Argant and holding between the legs a plate three escallops reversed Or.
Per pale Azure and Sable on a fess Argent cotised Or between three plates each charged with a bull’s head cabossed of the first as many annulets of the second.
On either side a bull reguardant Argent semee of roses and collared Gules
Tiens La Vraie (Hold To The Truth)[6]
Parliament of the United Kingdom Preceded byRobert Ascroft James Francis Oswald Member of Parliament for Oldham 18991911 With: Walter Runciman 1899–1900Winston Churchill 1900–1906John Albert Bright 1906–1910William Barton 1910–1911 Succeeded byEdmund Bartley-Denniss William Barton Preceded bySir John Lawson, Bt Chairman of Ways and Means 1906–1911 Succeeded byJohn Henry Whitley Political offices Preceded byThe Lord Lucas of Crudwell Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies 1911–1914 Succeeded byThe Lord Islington Preceded byThe Earl Beauchamp First Commissioner of Works 1914–1915 Succeeded byLewis Harcourt Peerage of the United Kingdom New creation Baron Emmott 1911–1926 Extinct


  1. ^ a b Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-27-2.
  2. ^ Privy Counsellors 1836-1914[usurped]
  3. ^ "No. 28547". The London Gazette. 3 November 1911. p. 7952.
  4. ^ Heath, Alison (6 October 2015). The Life of George Ranken Askwith, 1861–1942. ISBN 9781317320043.
  5. ^ Clarke, P. F. (26 March 2007). Lancashire and the New Liberalism. ISBN 9780521035576.
  6. ^ Debrett's Peerage. 1921. p. 347.