The Returning Officer: Clubs II

The list of MPs’ clubs in the 1915 Liberal yearbook contains some obscurities. Henry Norman, MP for Blackburn (1910-23), was the sole listed member of the Sesame Club. It was founded in 1895 to promote educational reform and was influenced by the work of Friedrich Fröbel. When it became more of a social club, some members split away to form the Sesame League.

The Byculla Club had been established just outside Bombay in 1832, inspired by the United Service Club in London and following similar foundations in Bengal and Madras.

John Jardine had been a High Court judge in the city and, after retiring, served as MP for Roxburghshire (1906-18) but retained his membership of the Byculla. His publications included Notes on Buddhist Law and Sangermano’s Burmese Empire.

This article appears in the 27 November 2013 issue of the New Statesman, The North