Hugh Fortesque, 5th Earl Fortesque (Viscount Ebrington) KG CB OBE MC


Hugh Fortesque was born on 14 June 1888, the son of the 4th Earl also called Hugh Fortesque. His mother was Emily Ormsby-Gore, daughter of the 2nd Lord Harlech. Hugh was educated at Eton and RMA Sandhurst joining the Scots Greys in 1907. He served with the regiment in WW1, in France, and was wounded twice. He was attached to Signals in 1915, promoted to captain and was a staff officer from 1916 to 1919. He was awarded the MC in 1917. After the war he resumed his pre-war post as instructor at the Cavalry School, and then was ADC to Lord Rawlinson, C-in-C in India from 1921, returning to England in 1922. There he joined the 96th (Royal North Devon Yeomanry) Brigade RA (TA) and was promoted to lieutenant-colonel in command from 1925 to 1931. He was Colonel Commandant of the HAC in 1935. He also served in WW2 on the General staff.

He was Viscount Ebrington from 1905, and then succeed to the title Earl Fortesque on the death of his father in 1932. He took up his seat in the House of Lords and served under Stanley Baldwin, Neville Chamberlain and Winston Churchill as government whip. He commanded the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms in 1945. He was a Privy Councillor in 1952 and made a Knight of the Garter in 1951. In 1917 he married Margaret Beaumont daughter of Lord Allendale. They had four children, one of whom was the heir, but was killed at El Alamein in 1942 serving also in the Scots Greys. The other children were daughters, one was co-heiress, Lady Margaret Fortsque who died in 2013. The family seats were in Devon, Castle Hill in Filleigh, and Weare Giffard Hall. Also Ebrington Manor, Gloucestershire. Lord Fortesque died on his birthday, 14 June 1958, four days after the death of his wife, Margaret. The photo shows him as a 2nd Lieutenant c1907 in dress uniform having recently joined the Scots Greys. There is another photo of him as a Major in 1919 in khaki service dress.


Regimental Details | Soldiers




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by Stephen Luscombe