Anthony Ashley Cooper, Earl of Shaftesbury

1 October -- Commemoration
If celebrated as a Lesser Festival, Common of any Saint, page 527

Born in 1801, Ashley Cooper was first elected to the House of Commons in 1826. In 1851, he succeeded his father as Earl of Shaftesbury and sat in the House of Lords. His service in parliament was marked from the beginning by a desire to reform social abuses, an impulse which derived from his strong Evangelical Anglican piety. He campaigned successfully for measures to improve housing and also create schools for the poor. He pioneered legislation on conditions of employment, for example, in mines and factories, particularly with respect to the protection of children. He became the epitome of the Victorian Christian philanthropist, working within the political system to redress social evils. He died on this day in 1885.