In the first county council elections for Carnarvonshire he played a strenuous part on the Radical side, and was chosen an alderman; and in 1890, at a by-election for Carnarvon Boroughs, he was returned to parliament by a majority of 18 over a strong Conservative opponent.
The central brigade came under the control of the Metropolitan Board of Works; and the County Council now manages the Metropolitan Fire Brigade, under a chief officer and a staff numbering about 1300.
But in 1888 the Local Government Act, dealing with the area of the metropolis as a separate county, created the London County Council as the central administrative body, possessing not only the powers of an ordinary county council, but also extensive powers of town management, transferred to it from the abolished Board of Works.
The London County Council maintains a number of industrial schools and reformatories, both in London and in the country, for children who have shown or are likely to be misled into a ii phaa- tendency towards lawlessness.
In the spring of 1890 he presided over the Co-operative Congress, but with a view to the impending political campaign he found it necessary to resign the chairmanship of the county council in June.
The net result of the county council elections in the spring of 1899 was to displace, except in some northern counties, nearly all the men who had hitherto done the local business.
The Office of Works controls the Royal parks, the County Council controls the larger parks and open spaces not under Government or City control, and the borough councils the smaller; while the City Corporation controls certain public grounds outside the County of London.
The county council may, with the consent of the Local Government Board, borrow money on the security of the county fund or any of its revenues, for consolidating the debts of the county; purchasing land or buildings; any permanent work or other thing, the cost of which ought to be spread over a term 'of years; making advances in aid of the emigration or colonization of inhabitants of the county; and any purpose for which quarter sessions or the county council are authorized by any act to borrow.
The London County Council administers the Horniman Museum at Forest Hill, Lewisham.
The powers, duties and liabilities of the quarter sessions and justices out of session with respect to the county police were vested in the quarter sessions and the county council jointly, and are now exercised through the standing joint-committee of the two bodies.