John Lyttelton, 9th Viscount Cobham

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John Cavendish Lyttelton, 9th Viscount Cobham, KCB, DL (23 October 1881 – 31 July 1949), was a British peer, soldier, and Conservative politician from the Lyttelton family.


Cobham was the eldest son of Charles Lyttelton, 8th Viscount Cobham, and the Hon. Mary Susan Caroline Cavendish, daughter of William Cavendish, 2nd Baron Chesham. Alfred Lyttelton was his uncle. He was educated at Eton. Like his father and his uncle, Cobham was a successful cricketer. He represented Worcestershire County Cricket Club in three first-class matches during 1924-5. He was President of Marylebone Cricket Club in 1935, again emulating his father and uncle.

Lyttelton was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Rifle Brigade on 4 December 1901, and served with regiment in the Second Boer War. He returned home with the SS Kinfauns Castle after the war had ended, leaving Cape Town in early August 1902.[1] From 1905 to 1908 he was back in South Africa as aide-de-camp to the High Commissioner.

Lyttelton was elected to the House of Commons for Droitwich in the January 1910 general election, a seat he held until his resignation 1916 (being appointed Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead). During the First World War he fought at Gallipoli and in Egypt, the Sinai and Palestine, achieving the rank of lieutenant colonel. He succeeded his father as ninth Viscount Cobham in 1922 and entered the House of Lords. In 1939 he was appointed Under-Secretary of State for War in the government of Neville Chamberlain, a position he retained until May 1940. Apart from his political and military career he was also Lord Lieutenant of Worcestershire from 1923 to 1949.

Marriage and children

St John the Baptist Church, Hagley, grave of John Lyttelton, 9th Viscount Cobham (1881–1949)
St John the Baptist Church, Hagley, memorial to Violet, wife of the 9th Viscount Cobham

Cobham married Violet, daughter of Charles Leonard, on 30 June 1908. They had five children together:[2]

Cobham died in July 1949, aged 67, and was succeeded in his titles by his son Charles, who later served as Governor-General of New Zealand. Lord Cobham is buried in the Lyttleton family plot at St John the Baptist Church, Hagley. Lady Cobham died in 1966.


  1. ^ "The Army in South Africa - Return of Troops". The Times (36846). London. 14 August 1902. p. 8. 
  2. ^ The Peerage, entry for 9th Viscount Cobham


  • Kidd, Charles; Williamson, David, eds. (1990), Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage, New York: St Martin's Press, p. [page needed] 
  • Leigh Rayment's Peerage Pages – Peerages beginning with "C" (part 5)[self-published source][better source needed]
  • Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "D" (part 3)
  • Lundy, Darryl, John Cavendish Lyttelton, 9th Viscount Cobham, The Peerage [unreliable source]
  • John Lyttelton,, retrieved September 2012  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help) contains his Wisden obituary from the Wisden Cricketers' Almanack

External links

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by the Viscount Cobham
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Cecil Harmsworth
Member of Parliament for Droitwich
Jan. 1910–1916
Succeeded by
Herbert Whiteley
Political offices
Preceded by
The Earl of Munster
Under-Secretary of State for War
Succeeded by
Sir Henry Croft, Bt
Honorary titles
Preceded by
The Earl of Coventry
Lord Lieutenant of Worcestershire
Succeeded by
Sir William Tennant
Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Charles George Lyttelton
Viscount Cobham
Succeeded by
Charles John Lyttelton

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