Cecil Avenue, IG11

Place name

Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil (February 3, 1830 – August 22, 1903), 3rd Marquess of Salisbury, was three times British prime minster. He was born at Hatfields in Hertfordshire to the 2nd Marquess of Salisbury and Frances Mary (nee Gascoyne) whose family owned the Westbury estate in Barking, upon the grounds of which this street is laid out. He was educated at Eton (though left after being bullied) and at Christ Church, Oxford, before a brief spell at Lincoln’s Inn in 1850. He was first elected to the House of Commons in 1854 and served as Secretary of State for India and Foreign Secretary before emerging as the Conservative leader. He became prime minister in 1885 and throughout his 13 year premiership acted as his own foreign minister, avoiding any political alignments and maintaining a policy of “splendid isolation”. He was the last prime minster to serve from the House of Lords, and was succeeded by his nephew Arthur Balfour, whose previous appointment by Gascoyne-Cecil as Chief Secretary for Ireland is said to have given rise to the phrase “Bob’s your uncle”. This street was laid out in the first half of the 20thCentury.

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