Page:Dictionary of National Biography, Second Supplement, volume 2.djvu/433

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Lambert
Lambert
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charity. The book is a permanent contribution to economic science and contemporary history. In the year of Lambert's appointment cholera visited the parish. He circulated papers of directions, organised the distribution of medicine and visited the sick assiduously; he noted that on one day he buried forty-four corpses. He founded a penny bank, a soup kitchen, a working-man's club, and a mutual improvement society; he renovated the church. At the general election of 1868 he arranged a course of sermons in his church on the duties of electors. Among the preachers were H. R. Haweis, Stopford Brooke, F. D. Maurice, and J. R. Green. Under the constant strain of work Lambert's health broke down and he resigned the living in the autumn of 1870. He spent the winter abroad with J. R. Green, then vicar of St. Philip's, Stepney, and a visit to the West Indies, where his family had property, subsequently restored his health. In June 1872 he was instituted to the living of Tamworth, Staffordshire, where he remained for six years. There he made a careful and thorough restoration of the fine old parish church, nearly completed two district churches, and was instrumental in establishing a school board. But he found a provincial town more impervious to new ideas and methods than East London. A serious falling off in his private income owing to the decline of the West Indian sugar trade led to his resignation at the end of 1878.

On leaving Tamworth Lambert engaged in London in voluntary work for the London school board, and educational problems absorbed his attention. He helped to establish the London University Extension Society, and in June 1879 became organising secretary. He was chairman of the Local Centres Association from 1894 to 1900 and vice-chairman of the society in 1898 and 1899. In the autumn of 1879 he became curate-in-charge of St. Jude's, Whitechapel, while the vicar. Canon Barnett, was out of England. In August 1880 he was appointed by Mr. Gladstone vicar of Greenwich, where he remained till his death twenty years later. The position afforded an almost unlimited field for honest and wise public work. The income of the charities of the ancient royal borough amounted to nearly 20,000l. per annum, and into the work of wise administration Lambert threw himself with energy. Boreman's Educational Foundation, and the Roan Trust, which maintains two large secondary schools, absorbed much of his attention, and he was also chairman of all the Greenwich groups of elementary schools. He was a member of the Greenwich board of works and a guardian, being the chairman of the infirmary committee and interesting himself minutely in the management of the poor law schools. By his discharge of these public duties he earned for himself a unique position of influence and respect. In his parish work he was equally successful. The parish church was renovated with sound esthetic judgment. He entrusted his parish council with control of finance and consulted it with regard to changes in worship and ritual. When the council became aware in 1888 of the smallness of the vicar's stipend it established a vicar's fund which contributed 400l. per annum to Lambert's income till his death. A university extension centre and a committee of the Charity Organisation Society were successfully established in Greenwich, and in 1885 the Greenwich Provident Dispensary was founded, which quickly reached a membership of 3000. Lambert joined the Mansion House committee appointed to inquire into distress (1888), the departmental committee appointed by the local government board to inquire into the management of poor law schools (1894), and the departmental committee appointed to consider reformatory and industrial schools (1895). From 1880 till his death he was first chairman of the Metropolitan Association for Befriending Young Servants. In the kindred Association for Befriending Boys, founded in 1898, he was also active. As early as 1883 he helped to found the Art for Schools Association, and remained its chairman till 1899.

Lambert, who was a prominent freemason and past grand chaplain of England, combined in his manifold endeavours high ideals with great business aptitudes. He travelled widely in his vacations. His health failed in 1900, and a long journey to South Africa and then up the Nile to Khartoum failed to restore it. He died unmarried at Greenwich vicarage on 25 Jan. 1901, and after cremation was buried at Old Shoeburyness parish church.

A marble bust, executed towards the end of his life by Joy, a sculptor of Tamworth, was presented after his death to the Roan Schools at Greenwich.

Lambert wrote frequently in the 'Contemporary Review' and other magazines and published many single sermons. He was author of 'The Lord's Prayer: Ten Sermons'