John Haden Badley was born in Dudley, near Birmingham, in 1865, the youngest in a family of four. His father was a well-respected and comfortably successful doctor who had inherited a prosperous practice from his father.1 Still earlier generations had been doctors but more remote ancestors had been Staffordshire farmers and small landowners. Badley remembers his father as a man who spent little time with his children, and whose reserve was somewhat forbidding. At meal times and very occasionally at Christmas or some such season they saw him and talked with him — on the occasion that Badley reports his father as going on holiday with the family, he stayed for only two days and ‘it was something of a relief when the visit was over’. Recollecting in tranquillity, Badley speaks with affection and respect of the unpretentious goodness of his father in his care of poor patients and his forbearance with his son who showed no wish to study medicine. Had Badley senior had his own choice of career he would have become a lawyer, but he acceded to his father’s wish that he should come in as an assistant in the medical practice. He made no such request of his own son and being also a good business man who invested in land and property he was able to offer John Haden the opportunities of life at Rugby and Cambridge.
KeywordsLabour Party Sexual Precocity Academic Record Private Income Remote Ancestor
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