Born at Plymouth, 2 July 1834, third son of James Meadows Rendel and Catherine his wife. Educated at Eton and Oriel College, Oxford, where he graduated in 1856, he was called to the Bar, and later interested himself in engineering and ultimately became London manager of the Armstrong gunnery company. In 1880 he entered Parliament as Liberal member for Montgomeryshire, breaking the Conservative Wynnstay tradition which had lasted for over eighty years. He soon became the acknowledged leader of the Welsh members of Parliament, and till his elevation to the House of Lords in 1894 took a prominent part in the promotion of Welsh interests, particularly in connection with the Welsh Intermediate Education Act (1889), and the measures proposed to disestablish the Church of England in Wales. He was intimate with W. E. Gladstone, and was in close touch with him during his last premiership (1892-4) when there was considerable parliamentary activity in matters relating to Wales. Rendel was a benefactor of the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, of which he was president from 1895 till his death, and where the chair of English bears his name; and in 1897 he purchased land at Grogytha n, Aberystwyth, and presented it to be the site of the National Library of Wales.
Rendel married Ellen, daughter of W. Egerton Hubbard, and by her he had four daughters. He died 4 June 1913 in London, and was buried at East Clandon, Surrey.
Published date: 1959
Article Copyright: http://rightsstatements.org/page/InC/1.0/
The Dictionary of Welsh Biography is provided by The National Library of Wales and the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies. It is free to use and does not receive grant support. A donation would help us maintain and improve the site so that we can continue to acknowledge Welsh men and women who have made notable contributions to life in Wales and beyond.
Find out more on our sponsorship page.