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London County Council

From Academic Kids

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The County of London, shown within a map of England's 1890 counties

London County Council (LCC) was the principal local government body for the County of London from 1889 until 1965, when it was replaced by the Greater London Council. It covered the area today known as Inner London.

The creation of the LCC was forced by a succession of scandals involving the Metropolitan Board of Works, its predecessor, which had not been directly elected. While the Conservative government of the day would have preferred not to create a single body covering the whole of London, their electoral pact with Liberal Unionists led them to this policy. A later Government created the 28 metropolitan boroughs as lower tier authorities in 1899.

The LCC initially used the Spring Gardens headquarters of the Metropolitan Board of Works but by 1906 decided to buy up three adjacent plots of land on the eastern side of Westminster Bridge for use as a single headquarters. The County Hall designed by Ralph Knott was built there from 19091933.

Initially it had been hoped by many that elections to the LCC would be conducted on a non-partisan basis, but in the Council two political groups formed. The majority group in 1889 was the Progressives, who were unofficially allied with the Liberal Party in national politics. Those who allied with the Tory Party formed the Moderate group. In 1906, the Moderates added the name Municipal Reform.

The LCC was elected every three years. The Progressives were in control continuously from 1889 until 1907, when they lost power to the Municipal Reformers. Municipal Reform control lasted until 1934 when Labour won power, which they kept until the LCC was abolished.

Leaders of the London County Council

The post of Leader was only officially recognised in 1933. This table takes into account the usual convention in British local government that the Leader is the Chairman of certain important committees.

Council Chamber of the LCC, from the majority benches
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Council Chamber of the LCC, from the majority benches
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