Michael Hicks Beach, 2nd Earl St Aldwyn

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The Earl St Aldwyn

The Earl St Aldwyn in 1932.jpg
Lord St Aldwyn in 1932
Government Chief Whip in the House of Lords
Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms
In office
24 June 1970 – 11 March 1974
Prime Minister Edward Heath
Preceded by The Lord Beswick
Succeeded by The Baroness Llewelyn-Davies of Hastoe
In office
27 June 1957 – 21 October 1964
Prime Minister Harold Macmillan
Alec Douglas-Home
Preceded by The Earl Fortescue
Succeeded by The Lord Shepherd
Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries
In office
18 October 1954 – 18 January 1957
Prime Minister Winston Churchill
Anthony Eden
Harold Macmillan
Preceded by The Lord Carrington
Succeeded by Joseph Godber
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
In office
9 October 1933 – 29 January 1992
Hereditary peerage
Preceded by Michael Hicks Beach, 1st Earl St Aldwyn
Succeeded by Michael Henry Hicks Beach, 3rd Earl St Aldwyn
Personal details
Born 9 October 1912
Died 29 January 1992
Political party Conservative

Michael John Hicks Beach, 2nd Earl St Aldwyn GBE TD PC DL (9 October 1912 – 29 January 1992) was a British Conservative politician. He achieved the distinction of serving in the governments of five different Prime Ministers.

Background and education

St Aldwyn was the only son of Michael Hicks Beach, Viscount Quenington, who was killed in action in 1916, and the grandson of Michael Hicks Beach, 1st Earl St Aldwyn. His mother was Marjorie Brocklehurst, who also died in 1916, daughter of Henry Dent Brocklehurst. He succeeded his grandfather in the earldom in April 1916, aged only three. St Aldwyn was educated at Eton and later fought in the Second World War as a Major in the 1st Royal Gloucestershire Hussars.

Political career

In 1954 St Aldwyn was appointed Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries in the Conservative administration of Winston Churchill, a post he also held under Anthony Eden and Harold Macmillan (the ministry was renamed the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in 1955).

In 1958 Macmillan promoted him to Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms (chief government whip in the House of Lords). He retained this post also under Sir Alec Douglas-Home from 1963 to 1964. After the Conservatives lost power in 1964 he served as Chief Opposition Whip in the House of Lords from 1964 to 1970. When the Conservatives returned to power in 1970 under Edward Heath, St Aldwyn was again appointed Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms, which he remained until the government fell in 1974.

Between 1974 and 1978 he was again Chief Opposition Whip in the House of Lords. Apart from his political career he was also a Justice of the Peace and Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucestershire and served as Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Gloucestershire from 1981 to 1987. He was sworn of the Privy Council in 1959, appointed a KBE in 1964 and a GBE in 1980.

Marriage and children

Lord St Aldwyn married Diana Mary Christian Mills, daughter of Henry Christian George Mills, on 26 June 1948. They had three sons:[1]

Lord St Aldwyn died in January 1992, aged 79, and was succeeded by his eldest son Michael.

References

  1. ^ The Peerage, entry for 2nd Earl St Aldwyn

External links

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by the Earl St Aldwyn
Political offices
Preceded by
The Earl Fortescue
Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms
1957–1964
Succeeded by
The Lord Shepherd
Preceded by
The Lord Beswick
Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms
1970–1974
Succeeded by
The Baroness Llewelyn-Davies
Party political offices
Preceded by
The Earl Fortescue
Conservative Chief Whip in the House of Lords
1957—1978
Succeeded by
The Lord Denham
Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Michael Hicks Beach
Earl St Aldwyn
1916–1992
Succeeded by
Michael Hicks Beach
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