Sunday, 31 October 2010

Baron who of where-and-why-on-earth

Just about every city in this country has one. I'm talking about the "notable public figure" and Hull is no exception.
Behold Charles Henry Wilson, 1st Baron Nunburnholme. You've never heard of him and I can't see why you would. This man made his fortune by inheriting a shipping company, actually the largest private shipowning concern in the world. Not surprising given the democratic ethos of the times he was also MP for Hull (a Liberal, weren't they all!) and High Sheriff of Hull. Never one to let politics get in the way of profit he sent ships to the Boer War despite being opposed to it. Piling Ossa on Pelion, he was given the freedom of Hull and then a peerage as Baron Nunburnholme, of the City of Kingston upon Hull. Having done so much he nevertheless failed to achieve immortality and died in 1907.

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