6th Marquess of Londonderry

The Most Honourable
The Marquess of Londonderry
KG, GCVO, PC, DL, JP
The Marquess of Londonderry, bearing the Sword of State at the coronation of Edward VII, August 1902. Portrait by John Singer Sargent.
Lord President of the Council
In office
19 October 1903 – 11 December 1905
Monarch Edward VII
Prime Minister Arthur Balfour
Preceded by The Duke of Devonshire
Succeeded by The Earl of Crewe
President of the Board of Education
In office
8 August 1902 – 4 December 1905
Monarch Edward VII
Prime Minister Arthur Balfour
Preceded by The Duke of Devonshire
Succeeded by Augustine Birrell
Postmaster General
In office
10 April 1900 – 8 August 1902
Monarch Victoria
Edward VII
Prime Minister The Marquess of Salisbury
Arthur Balfour
Preceded by The Duke of Norfolk
Succeeded by Austen Chamberlain
Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
In office
3 August 1886 – 30 July 1889
Monarch Victoria
Preceded by The Earl of Aberdeen
Succeeded by The Earl of Zetland
Personal details
Born 16 July 1852 (1852-07-16)
London, United Kingdom
Died 8 February 1915 (1915-02-09)
Wynyard Park, Durham
United Kingdom
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Lady Theresa Chetwynd-Talbot (d. 1919)
Alma mater Christ Church, Oxford

Charles Stewart Vane-Tempest-Stewart, 6th Marquess of Londonderry KG, GCVO, PC, DL, JP (16 July 1852 – 8 February 1915), styled Viscount Castlereagh between 1872 and 1884, was an Anglo-Irish Conservative politician, landowner and benefactor, who served in various capacities in the Conservative administrations of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After succeeding his father in the marquessate in 1884, he was Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland between 1886 and 1889. He later held office as Postmaster General between 1900 and 1902 and President of the Board of Education between 1902 and 1905. A supporter of the Protestant causes in Ulster, he was an opponent of Irish Home Rule and one of the instigators of the formal alliance between the Conservative Party and the Liberal Unionists in 1893. Staunchly Conservative, he also voted against the Parliament Act of 1911.

Background and education

Born Charles Vane-Tempest in London, UK,[1] he was the eldest son of George Vane-Tempest, 5th Marquess of Londonderry, by Mary Cornelia, only daughter of Sir John Edwards, 1st Baronet. He was the grandson of the third Marquess and the great-nephew of the second Marquess, better known as the statesman Lord Castlereagh. Lord Randolph Churchill was his first cousin.[2] He was educated at Eton,[1][2] the National University of Ireland[1] and Christ Church, Oxford. He became known by the courtesy title Viscount Castlereagh when his father succeeded in the marquessate of Londonderry in 1872. In 1885 he assumed the original and additional surname of Stewart by Royal license.[1][2]

Political career

Castlereagh was returned to parliament as one of two representatives for Down in 1878, a seat he held until 1884, when he succeeded his father in the marquessate and entered the House of Lords. After the Conservatives came to power in 1886 under Lord Salisbury, Lord Londonderry was sworn of the Privy Council[3] and appointed Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland.[3] This was a time of difficulties in Ireland. Gladstone's first Home Rule Bill had just been rejected by parliament and national feelings ran high in Ireland. According to the Dictionary of National Biography, Londonderry "... filled the viceroyalty with tact and courage, so that when he left Dublin in 1889 the discontent had abated and some measure of prosperity had been restored."[1] He was appointed a Knight of the Garter in 1888[4] and admitted to the Irish Privy Council in 1892. He opposed Gladstone's second Home Rule Bill in 1893 and presided over the meeting which led to the formal political alliance between the Conservatives and the Liberal Unionists.[1]


From 1895 to 1897 Londonderry was Chairman of the London School Board. He returned to the government in April 1900 when Salisbury made him Postmaster General, and became a member of the cabinet in November of that year. After Arthur Balfour became prime minister in August 1902, Londonderry became President of the Board of Education. In this role he oversaw the Education Act of 1902 to 1903. Between 1903 and 1905 he was also Lord President of the Council. The Unionist fell in December 1905 and Londonderry subsequently focused mostly on Irish affairs. A staunch conservative, he was one of the 114 peers who voted against the Parliament Act of 1911. As president of the Ulster Unionist council he opposed the third Home Rule Bill proposed by the Liberal government in 1912 and was the second signature of the Ulster Covenant after Sir Edward Carson.[1]

Other public appointments

Lord Londonderry was also Lord-Lieutenant of Belfast from 1900 to 1904 and Lord-Lieutenant of Down from 1902 to 1915, a Deputy Lieutenant of Montgomeryshire and County Durham and a Justice of the Peace for County Durham. In 1910 he was Mayor of Durham.[2] As a large coal-owner in County Durham, he played a major role in this county. He was also a great benefactor, patron of agriculture and race-horse owner. King Edward VII was the guest at Londonderry's County Durham seat Wynyard Park on five occasions.[1] In 1903 Londonderry was appointed a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO).[2]

Family

Lord Londonderry married Lady Theresa Susey Helen Talbot, daughter of Charles Chetwynd-Talbot, 19th Earl of Shrewsbury, in 1875. Lady Londonderry, like her husband, was a leading Unionist campaigner, and President of the Ulster Women’s Unionist Council.[5]

They had two sons and one daughter. The second son, Lord Charles Stewart Reginald Vane-Tempest-Stewart, died in October 1899, aged 19. The daughter, Lady Helen, married the 6th Earl of Ilchester.[2]

Londonderry died of pneumonia at Wynyard Park, County Durham,[1] in February 1915, aged 62, and was succeeded by his elder and only surviving son, Charles. The Marchioness of Londonderry died in March 1919.[2]

References

External links

  • Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by
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Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
James Sharman Crawford
Lord Edwin Hill-Trevor
Member of Parliament for Down
1878–1884
With: Lord Edwin Hill-Trevor 1878–1880
Lord Arthur Hill 1880–1884
Succeeded by
Lord Arthur Hill
Richard William Blackwood Ker
Political offices
Preceded by
The Earl of Aberdeen
Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
1886–1889
Succeeded by
The Earl of Zetland
Preceded by
The Duke of Norfolk
Postmaster General
1900–1902
Succeeded by
Austen Chamberlain
Preceded by
The Duke of Devonshire
President of the Board of Education
1902–1905
Succeeded by
Augustine Birrell
Preceded by
The Duke of Devonshire
Lord President of the Council
1903–1905
Succeeded by
The Earl of Crewe
Government offices
Preceded by
Lord George Hamilton
Chairman of the London School Board
1895–1897
Succeeded by
The Lord Reay
Honorary titles
New office Lord Lieutenant of Belfast
1900–1904
Succeeded by
The Earl of Shaftesbury
Preceded by
The Marquess of Dufferin and Ava
Lord Lieutenant of Down
1902–1915
Succeeded by
The Marquess of Londonderry
Peerage of Ireland
Preceded by
George Vane-Tempest
Marquess of Londonderry
1884–1915
Succeeded by
Charles Vane-Tempest-Stewart
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