Page:Men of the Time, eleventh edition.djvu/108

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91
BEACH—BEAL.

favour of Mr. Birley, the Conservative candidate. At the general election of Feb. 1874, he was third on the poll, the votes given for the three successful candidates being as follows:—Birley, 19,984; Callender, 19,649; Bazley, 19,325. He was created a baronet in Oct. 1869, and retired from parliamentary life in March, 1880.


BEACH, The Right Hon. Sir Michael Edward Hicks, Bart., M.P., eldest son of the late Sir Michael Hicks Hicks-Beach, of Williamstrip Park, Gloucestershire, the eighth baronet, by his wife Harriet Vittoria, daughter of John Stratton, Esq., of Farthinghoe Lodge, Northamptonshire, was born in Portugal Street, London, in 1837. From Eton he was sent to Christ Church, Oxford (B.A. 1858; M.A. 1861), and in July 1864 he was elected M.P. for East Gloucestershire, which constituency he still represents in the Conservative interest. He was Parliamentary Secretary to the Poor Law Board from Feb. till Dec. 1868, with the exception of a few weeks, during which he was Under-Secretary for the Home Department; and he served as a member of the Royal Commission on Friendly Societies. When the Conservatives again came into office in Feb. 1874, Sir M. H. Beach was appointed Chief Secretary for Ireland. On taking that office he was sworn on the Privy Council, and in 1877 he was admitted to a seat in the Cabinet. In Feb. 1878 he was nominated Secretary of State for the Colonies, in the place of Lord Carnarvon, who had resigned in consequence of a difference with his colleagues on the Eastern Question. He went out of office with his party in April, 1880. Sir Michael is a magistrate and deputy-lieutenant for Gloucestershire, and was for fourteen years Captain in the Royal North Gloucestershire Militia.


BEAL, James, was born in 1829, at Chelsea, and educated at private schools. He took an active part as the colleague of James Taylor, the founder of the Freehold Land movement, in establishing Land and Building Societies. Mr. Beal lectured several nights weekly for years in London, the provinces, and through Scotland, and contributed largely to the Freeholder. In consequence of the ritualistic practices of the curate of St. Barnabas, Pimlico, he brought the well-known suit, afterwards merged in a similar suit brought by Mr. Westerton, and known as "Westerton and Beal v. Liddell," which was the commencement of the movement that culminated in the Public Worship Regulation Act of 1874. When the gas companies of London privately "districted" the metropolis, he conducted, on behalf of twenty-five vestries, as hon. secretary to the delegates, the parliamentary inquiries in 1857–60, and mainly secured the passing of the Metropolis Gas Act, 1860, and subsequently the City of London Gas Act, 1868. He was largely instrumental, acting as hon. secretary, in the return of the late J. Stuart Mill as M.P. for Westminster in 1865, and he has been a prominent politician in Westminster since 1852. Mr. Beal has devoted much time to parliamentary inquiries into the government and taxation of the metropolis. He was examined before the committees of the House of Commons in 1861 and 1867, and proposed the scheme adopted by Mr. Mill, and embodied in the three bills introduced by him and by the late Mr. C. Buxton and by Lord Elcho, to establish a municipal government for the metropolis. He is an active member of the City Guilds Reform Association, organised to secure a reform in the administration of the City Companies, and is the hon. secretary of the Metropolitan Municipal Association, formed to create a municipality of London. Mr. Beal is the author of "Free Trade in