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The Progressive Party was a political party based around the Liberal Party that contested municipal elections in the County of London and elsewhere in the United Kingdom.[1]

It was founded in 1888 by a group of Liberals and leaders of the labour movement. It was also supported by the Fabian Society, and Sidney Webb was one of its councillors. In the first elections of the London County Council in January 1889 the Progressive Party won 70 of the 118 seats. It lost power in 1907 to the Municipal Reform Party (a Conservative organisation) under Richard Robinson.

In May 1914 the Labour Trades Council decided to cease supporting the Progressive Party, and instead formed a separate London Labour Party. Only one sitting member of the council, Susan Lawrence initially joined the party, but at the 1919 elections Labour made major advances at the expense of the Progressives, who formed an electoral pact with the Municipal Reformers.[2] At the 1925 council elections the Progressives fell into third place, with just six councillors, a position from which they never recovered.[3] The London Liberal Federation decided to cease using the "Progressive" title, and at the 1928 council elections former Progressives stood under the Liberal Party label for the first time.[4] [5] [6]



  2. Brian Barker, Labour in London: a study in Municipal Achievement, Taylor & Francis, 1946, pp.53 -55 [1]
  3. W Eric Jackson, Achievement. a Short History of the London County Council, Longmans, 1965, p.10
  4. Geoffrey Alderman, London Jewry and London politics, 1889-1986, CUP Archive, 1989, ISBN 9780415022040, p.56
  5. L.C.C. Election. Full List Of The Nominations., M.R. Candidates For All Seats. , The Times, 1 March 1928, p.9
  6. L.C.C. Election. Full Results of Polling, The Times, 10 March 1928, p. 17
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