Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Royal Profile: Edward John Spencer, 8th Earl Spencer
After Eton he went into the Army, fighting in the Second World War. He was mentioned in dispatches for bravery, eventually gaining the rank of Captain in the Royal Scots Greys. After the war he served as ADC to Lord Norrie, Governor of South Australia, before becoming a courtier. He served King George VI and the Queen as an equerry, accompanying her on her tour of the Commonwealth in the early 1950s. He became a Member of the Royal Victorian Order in 1954.
He married The Honorable Frances Burke Roche on June 1, 1954. Their wedding was considered the social event of the year, attended by the Queen, the Queen Mother, and Princess Margaret. After their marriage, the couple settled at Park House and Johnnie studied at the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester. They would have five children (one died in infancy) - Sarah (born 1955), Jane (born 1957), Diana (1961-1997) and Charles (born 1964), the present Earl Spencer. The couple were divorced in 1969, after Frances left Johnnie for Peter Shand Kydd. In the ensuing divorce, he won custody of his children.
He was passionate about photography, his wine cellar and people. As his eldest daughter Lady Sarah McCorquodale recalls:
"My father had an instinctive way with people...He was brilliant, and he stood in this wonderful shop at Althorp selling wine and he would come in and say, 'I've had a really good day today.' So we would say, 'Oh, have you sold lots of wine?' 'No' he'd reply, 'two divorces and a hysterectomy.' People would talk to him and he was gripped. He loved it.
He was chairman of the National Association of Boy's Clubs and a member of Northampton Council for 29 years. In 1983 he wrote a book with Raine called The Spencer's on Spas.
Lord Spencer died on March 29th, 1992 of a heart attack, at Humana Hospital, Wellington, London, where he had been admitted for pneumonia on March 21st. He was cremated and buried at the traditional Spencer burial place, St. Mary's Church, Great Brighton, Northamptonshire.
© Marilyn Braun 2007
Like royal books? Visit Marilyn's Royal Bookstore!
Labels: Royal Profile
At the risk of sounding as though I'm missing something, I don't understand the issue with Princess Angela of Liechtenstein. I rec...
A new royal year begins. Thankfully every British royal survived 2016 and we royal watchers can all go back to our daily lives without worry...
When Princess Charlotte is christened on Sunday July 5th, she will traditionally be given five or six godparents/sponsors. Prince William ha...
Never in the history of royal watching have we ever been so fascinated by another woman's skirt. Yes, we talk about the length and color...
Other than Jennifer Aniston and Gwen Stefani, has any woman in the public eye been pregnant more often than Kate? If...
In July we will be heading to London. My husband and I have been there twice but this will be a first time for our children. While we are ...
Jerramy Fine has an unerring knack for provoking skeptical questions. Such as.. Did she really go to London to find her prince? Can ho...
Hard to believe that it has been 18 years since Diana's death. I will never forget where I was when I heard she had been in an accident....
- ► 2016 (17)
- ► 2015 (35)
- ► 2013 (27)
- ► 2012 (53)
- ► 2011 (131)
- ► 2010 (102)
- ► 2009 (97)
- ► 2008 (126)
- Prince William and Prince Harry get it right
- Anatomy of a Diana Tell-All
- The sad day Camilla pandered to you
- The Royal Report for August 26, 2007 - Diana's leg...
- The one and only Royal Report
- Royal Profile: Edward John Spencer, 8th Earl Spenc...
- The Royal Report for August 19, 2007 - Should Cami...
- The Royal Report Ad
- Here comes the revolutionary?
- Should Camilla attend the Diana memorial?
- Diana bashing - What's the point?
- Tune in to The Royal Report
- Happy 19th birthday Princess Beatrice!
- Calling all Royal Bloggers and Royal Website owner...
- The Royal Report for August 6, 2007. Kate Middleto...
- The Royal Report: Monday August 6, 2007
- An Open Letter to Kate Middleton
- Introducing: The Royal Report
- ▼ August (18)
- ► 2006 (58)