The Returning Officer: Bath

The last MP to die in the First World War was Alexander George Boteville Thynne, killed near Béthune on 14 September 1918. A Tory MP for Bath from 1910, he served in the Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry and had seen action in the second Boer war and the Somaliland expedition of 1903-04 (he had also been a correspondent for Reuters).

In 1926, HMSO started to publish British Documents on the Origins of the War, 1898-1914, co-edited by G P Gooch. Gooch had been a Liberal MP for Bath (1906-10) and had lost to Thynne. He was a member of the anti-war Union of Democratic Control and edited the Contemporary Review for 49 years.

This article first appeared in the 19 February 2014 issue of the New Statesman, The Space Issue