Henry Sanderson Furniss, born in London in 1868, was
an English educationalist and socialist
Blind from birth, he was privately tutored, and entered
Hertford College, Oxford to read Modern History.
In 1902 he married Averil Dorothy Nicholl and he and his wife were both active members of the Labour Party.
Henry was a lecturer at Ruskin from 1907 and became the
college’s third Principal from in 1916 to 1925, during which time Ruskin
accepted its first female students. His wife, Lady Averil Sanderson, would open
a hostel for female students at Ruskin in 1950.
Henry became Baron Sanderson in 1930 in recognition of his distinguished
career in education. He was an active member of the Lords and represented the
Labour peers on the parliamentary executive of the Labour Party.