Frederick Colin 14th Earl of Lauderdale. 1868 -1931

Frederick Colin 14th Earl of Lauderdale. 1868 -1931
Frederick Colin 14th Earl of Lauderdale. 1868 -1931

He entered the army in Bengal at the age of 13, and exchanged into the Scots Guards after his father – a Major in the Bengal Staff Corps – won the Lauderdale peerage case in 1885 and became the Earl of Lauderdale. Frederick Colin suddenly found himself Viscount Maitland.

He served in the South African War of 1899 - 1901, then in August 1901, as Lt Colonel Viscount Maitland, raised and trained a regiment of cavalry for service in South Africa - the 1st County of London (Rough Riders) Imperial Yeomanry, with recruits drawn from the City of London. He gained the rank of Honorary Colonel in the service of the City of London (Rough Riders) Yeomanry. He served with several regiments including the Scots Guards and the Royal Scots Greys. He was Assistant Director of Auxiliary Forces, Army HQ Staff between 1903 and 1908.

During the Great War he served as Lt Col 23rd Bttn Royal Fusiliers 1914 -1916, where he was wounded, and finally persuaded to leave the front line to younger officers.  He was then appointed to the 3rd Garrison Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers in 1916. He was invested as a Officer, Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) in 1919. He gained the rank of Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel in the service of the Scots Guards.

Frederick was the first of our family to wear a kilt!   And was much derided for this. In the 1920's (and until the 1980s) it was considered improper to wear a kilt south of the Highland Line - roughly a line running from Banchory in Aberdeen south east to Dumbarton on the Clyde, and if you were not a Highlander. Since then attitudes have changed.

On April 16, 1890 he married Gwendoline Lucy, daughter of Judge R.Vaughan Williams of Bodlonfa, Flintshire. He became a Brigadier in the Royal Company of Archers He was also a Justice of the Peace and Deputy Lieutenant of the County of Berwick and Representative Peer [Scotland].

Ian Colin, 15th Earl of Lauderdale 1891 - 1953

Ian Colin, 15th Earl

He saw active service in the First World War as a Major in the 3rd Reserve Battalion of the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders in 1915-1916, and in 1918 was Aide-de-Camp to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.
He was also a member of the Royal Company of Archers, the King's Bodyguard for Scotland, and a Deputy Lieutenant for Berwickshire.

He married on November 11,1912 to Ethel Mary (Ivy), the daughter of James Jardine Bell Irvine of Makerstoun, Kelso. His only son, Ivor, Viscount Maitland, was killed in action in Tunisia

Ivor Colin James, Viscount Maitland 1915 - 1943

Ivor Colin, Viscount Maitland (painting by John Saint-Helier Lander, 1869-1944)

Lieutenant Viscount Maitland, 2nd Lothian and Border Horse, Royal Armoured Corps was killed in action in Tunisia on 18th January 1943 during the Battle of Bou Arada, aged 27. He was the only son of the 15th Earl and the Earldom devolved on a cousin.

The Rev. Alfred Sydney 16th Earl of Lauderdale 1904 - 1968

Alfred was a High Church – Anglo Catholic Anglican Priest. His later appointments were Priest in charge, St John's, West Worthing 1939-51; Vicar of St John's, West Worthing 1951-53; Curate, All Saints, Woodham 1953-56; Rector of Catsfield, co. Sussex 1958-60

He first married in 1938 to Nora Mary La Touche and his second marriage was to Irene Alice Mary Shipton in 1940. Irene was the daughter of the Rev. C.P. Shipton. He died by drowning in 1968 and was succeeded by his brother.

Patrick Francis, 17th Earl of Lauderdale 1911 - 2008

Patrick Francis, 17th Earl of Lauderdale 1911 - 2008
Patrick Francis, 17th Earl of Lauderdale 1911 - 2008

Patrick never expected to become the Earl of Lauderdale until his kinsman Ivor, Viscount Maitland was killed in action in 1943, and the Earldom devolved at the 15th Earl’s death to Patrick’s brother Alfred, who had no children and no prospect of any.

The son of a clergyman, Patrick was brought up frugally and on leaving Oxford with a degree in Politics, philosophy and economics had to earn a living, unlike his predecessors.

Interviewed by the Vienna correspondent of the Daily Mail, he assured his prospective employer that he could speak German – it was fortunate that his German was not tested at the interview. He got the job and then set out for Vienna to learn the language.

He claimed to have been employed and also dismissed by every newspaper in Fleet Street.

He gave the Times an eye-witness account of the Italian invasion of Albania in 1938. He was in Poland in September 1939, then moved his base from Berlin to Belgrade and set up a clandestine news service from Germany which provided The Times with authoritative accounts of what was going on in the country. He was in Romania when the Nazis invaded in 1940.

Patrick Francis Maitland
Patrick Francis Maitland

Patrick was a war correspondent during the second world war, serving with the US Navy in the Pacific and briefly as a rear gunner in aircraft seeking the Japanese fleet which was then severely defeated at the Battle of Midway 4 – 7 June 1942. He landed with the US Marines at Guadalcanal in August 1943, armed only with a typewriter, which years later still had on it mud from the island.

In 1943, he was poached by Foreign Office to join the Political Intelligence Department, used until 1946 as a cover for the Political Warfare Executive.  Tam Dayell, a political opponent commented in his obituary Though not in uniform, he was thought to have had "a very good war"

Post war, he established The Fleet Street Letter, which your Chief remembers delivering to offices near Fleet Street in the late 1940s. Concerned with gaining advance diplomatic news, it broke the news that the USSR had successfully tested an H Bomb.

Patrick Francis Maitland
Patrick Francis Maitland

In 1951 he was chosen as the Conservative candidate in the general election of that year to succeed Lord Dunglass (Alec Douglas-Home), who had become the Earl of Home. Always one to poke fun at himself, he observed that there were people among his constituents in Lanarkshire who thought that their candidate was déclassé compared with his predecessor. Tam Dayell commented “I know that Maitland was regarded as an excellent constituency MP" , However, he quarrelled with the administration, and when he lost his seat in Lanark by 810 votes in 1959, the Conservative Party rejoiced rather then help him back into the Commons.

When his brother died in 1968 he succeeded to the Earldom and a seat in the Hosue of Lords. He revelled in becoming a Member of Parliament again, albeit in the House of Lords. He became Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Energy, Transport and Research, and in 1974 Chairman of the European Communities Scrutiny Committee. He was a regular attender of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee He was co-founder and, from 1980 to 1999, vice-chairman of the 
All-Party Group for Energy Studies.

He married Stanka, the eldest daughter of Professor Milivoye Losanitch of Belgrade, Yugoslavia. In 1964 he began to restore the Lauderdale Aisle (built by the Earl of Lauderdale about 1635) to be used as a Chapel by the mainstream churches; it was consecrated by the Anglican Bishop of Edinburgh as the Shrine of Our Lady of Haddington, to be known as the Three Kings Chapel and the Shrine of Our Lady of Haddington. The Shrine is located in St. Mary’s Parish Kirk in Haddington, Scotland.

Ian 18th Earl of Lauderdale 1937 -  

Ian, 18th Earl of Lauderdale
Ian, 18th Earl of Lauderdale

Ian is the present chief. Born in Belgrade in 1937, he was brought up in New York during the second World War, returning to the UK in 1945. He married Ann Paule Clark in 1963 and has two children, Lady Sarah Maitland Parks and John, the The Master of Lauderdale, Viscount Maitland, born in 1965. He has homes in England and Scotland.

The Chief worked in marketing, stockbroking and finally banking, where he was the Senior Regional Manager for Africa and the Middle East for National Westminster Bank, now a part of the Royal Bank of Scotland. In this role he travelled to all the countries in the Middle East and many in Africa.

Following retirement from the bank he established a consultancy advising the London School of Economics on marketing, and also conducted courses in Europe, Africa and Asia on evaluating bank and country risk.

He served in the Royal Naval Reserve, is a member of the Queen's Bodyguard for Scotland, the Royal Company of Archers, and has been active in archery as well as performing ceremonial duties for the Sovereign. He is also a Freeman of the City of London.

Whilst at university he read history, which has formed the basis for much of the recent research on our family, and identified the link between the Maitlands of Scotland and the Mautalent family of Normandy from which we are all descended.


Arthur Balfour – Lord Balfour of Whittingehame   1848 -1930

Arthur Balfour – Lord Balfour of Whittingehame, the great grandson of the VIIIth Earl of Lauderdale was not a great prime minister, but he was a great statesman, trusted by allies and opponents alike. He was also the only Prime Minister our family can claim.

Although he was overshadowed by his predecessor, Lord Salisbury, and outshone in flashiness by his successor Lloyd George, Arthur Balfour was a great statesman, trusted by allies and opponents alike, and still active in public affairs 25 years after his party’s spectacular defeat in the 1906 general election – as disastrous as John Major’s defeat in 1997. Despite his ferocious opposition as a Conservative and Unionist leader to the Liberal Prime Ministers Asquith and Lloyd George from 1906 onwards, he was the only Unionist MP invited by Asquith to join the War Council at the outbreak of war in 1914. The Conservative leader of day – Bonar Law was not invited to be a member of the council despite his firm support of the Liberal government to prosecute the war.  

Balfour and Bonar Law remained close colleagues despite this slight to Bonar Law, and the two were in daily and friendly contact throughout the conflict. Arthur Balfour, a former Prime Minister, was willing for the sake of the nation to serve as a minister in a Government led by his opponent.  He succeeded Churchill (a Liberal at that time) at the Admiralty in 1915 and in 1917 became Foreign Minister.  In this appointment he was the first British cabinet minister to visit the USA, taking a leading part in the negotiations to secure American entry on our side in the Great War against Germany.

These senior and critical appointments, in a time of crisis, made by his opponents, are a testimony to his qualities as a gentleman and a statesman, and above all, his wisdom.

R.J.Q. Adams, in his recent (2007) biography of Arthur Balfour, covers his career in great, and to those uninstructed or uninterested in the politics of the late 19thand early 20thcentury, tedious detail, and makes a strong case for maintaining the respect which his contemporaries had for him.  We commend the book to enthusiasts,  and suggest to others that they await our forthcoming studies of this great statesman in future issues of the Newsletter.

Arthur Balfour, son of Arthur James Maitland Balfour, grandson of the VIIIth Earl of Lauderdale, would have been instantly admitted to Clan Maitland Society had it existed in his lifetime. 

            His grandfather, James Balfour after dismissal in 1800 for corruption by the East India Company, returned to England, secured the victualling contract for the Royal Navy in India and returned to India to make his fortune.  James was the ultimate in upward mobility. Back in Scotland, now known as a Nabob, he married Lady Eleanor Maitland, daughter of the VIIIth Earl, acquired a house in Grosvenor Square, and then Balgonie in Fife. Eleanor did not like the ferry across the Forth, so James bought the estate at Whittinghame between Haddington and Dunbar and built a massive house, no longer, alas in the family.

            His son, born 1820 was christened James Maitland Balfour, who continued the upward mobility by marrying Lady Blanche Gascoigne Cecil, daughter of the 2ndMarquess of Salisbury. This alliance assured the careers of her children, including her first son Arthur, and showed that the Balfours of Whittinghame had arrived.

            After his father’s early death, Arthur was an exceptionally wealthy young man about town, and was launched on his political career by his uncle Robert – hence the phrase “Bob’s your Uncle”, with a parliamentary seat at Hertford, by the gates of the Salisbury’s Hatfield House, where he was elected unopposed.

            Yes, Arthur had started life with a silver spoon in his mouth, but swiftly earned Salisbury’s respect for his judgment and became his confidential councilor. 

            There is more….much more… to follow. We shall learn how Balfour was given some very disagreeable posts by his uncle, performed them well, became leader of the conservative party, and retained this position despite the catastrophic defeat of 1906.


Sir Arthur Steel-Maitland Bt. 1876 - 1935

Sir Arthur Steel-Maitland Bt.
Sir Arthur Steel-Maitland Bt.

He was first Chairman of the Conservative Party (whose task is to manage party membership and election campaigns) from 1911 to1916, held office from 1915 to 1919 in Lloyd George’s coalition administration and was Minister of Labour in the Baldwin government at the time of the general strike in Britain during 1926.

Born Arthur Steel, he married Mary Ramsay Gibson Maitland, and changed his name on becoming a Baronet.




Air Commodore Edward Eric Maitland CMG 1880 - 1921

A very early aviator, after service in the Essex Regiment in the Boer War he served in the Air Battalion of the Royal Engineers, the Royal Flying Corps, the Royal Naval Air Service and the Royal Air Force.

He kept the log of the Airship R34 when crossing the Atlantic in 1919 from which a crew member descended by parachute to become the first man to arrive in the United States by air.

Field Marshal Sir Henry Maitland-Wilson, 1st Baron Wilson 1881 -1964

Jumbo Leaving Aircraft.
Jumbo Leaving Aircraft.

His career began in the Boer War and finished as a Chief of the British Joint Staff Mission,Washington D.C. from January 1945, responsible with the US Government for the decision to use nuclear weapons on Japan.

Known as Jumbo, for his girth, He commanded in the Middle East and then succeeded General Eisenhower as Supreme Allied Commander, Mediterranean in January 1944. He commanded the successful 1944 campaign against the German armies in Italy. He was an excellent strategist and tactician, and also well known for keeping the best Mess in North Africa and for his saying "Any damn fool can be uncomfortable".

Diana Rowden, Croix de Guerre, Special Operations Executive 1915 - 1944

Diana Rowden, Croix de Guerre (in civvies)
Diana Rowden, Croix de Guerre (in civvies)

Diana Rowden, born 1915, was the daughter of Muriel Christian Maitland-Makgill-Crichton. She was brought up in France by her mother, where she enjoyed the outdoor life of southern France. Sent to school in England as a teenager in the 1920s, she returned to France in 1933 to study at the Sorbonne university in Paris.

When Germany invaded France in 1940 she volunteered to serve with the Red Cross, and she remained there until the summer of 1941 when she escaped to England via Spain and Portugal.

Diana Rowden, Croix de Guerre
Diana Rowden, Croix de Guerre

In September 1941, she joined the Women's Auxiliary Air Force,(WAAF) working at the Department of the Chief of the Air Staff as Assistant Section Officer for Intelligence duties, before being posted in July 1942 to Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire where she was promoted to Section officer. In March 1943 she was seconded to the SOE, Special Operations Executive. The SOE was a British sabotage organisation devoted to organising and promoting resistance to German occupation of mainland Europe, which came into its own during the Battle of Normandy as Allied armies invaded France. The operations were highly successful in obstructing the German counter attacks.

On 16th June 1943 she was sent to France, landing from a small Lysander transport aircraft near Angers, in western France.

She travelled to the Jura area, south east of Dijon, near Switzerland and to her operations area at St. Amour, close to Lons-Le-Saunier, and only 30 miles from the Swiss border. She lived in a small room at the back of the Hôtel du Commerce, run by a member of the resistance, with access to a roof if she had to leave in a hurry without being seen.


She was a courier and travelled mostly by bicycle but went as far as Marseille, Lyon and even Paris. She got to know the local Maquis who described her as fearless.

In addition to courier activities, she also accompanied the local Maquis to receive arms and explosives dropped from aircraft. She assisted in the successful attack on the Peugot factory at Socheaux, near the Swiss border, which made tank turrets.

In November 1943 a double agent led German forces to her base, where she and her wireless operator were arrested.

Diana was taken to Gestapo Headquarters Paris. In May 1944 she was sent to Karlsruhe. On 6 July 1944 with three other captured agents she was sent 60 miles to the Natzweiler-Struthof concentration camp in France, arriving there in the afternoon. Natzweiler was regularly used for killing prisoners.

That evening, the four prisoners were killed by lethal injections.

The doctor involved was hanged for his part in these events, the crematorium operator was hanged on the same day for another offence and the camp commandant died in prison prior to his own execution on other charges.

Sir Donald Maitland, K.C.M.G, 1922 - 2010

A leading diplomat, he served as press secretary to Prime Minister Edward Heath and then as U.K. Permanent Representative to the European Communities in Brussels, Belgium. An Arabist in the Foreign Office, he was Director of the Middle East Centre for Arab Studies, Lebanon Between 1956 and 1960 and also Ambassador to Libya.

Sara Maitland 1950 -

A noted author, she has written several novels, received the Somerset Maugham Award for her "Daughter of Jerusalem" and has been a contributor to the Clan Year Book.

Lady Olga Maitland, 1944 -

Lady Olga Maitland
Lady Olga Maitland

The Chief’s sister, represented Sutton and Cheam, Surrey in the House of Commons from 1992 to 1997. She was secretary of the Back Bench Committee on Northern Ireland Affairs and obtained office as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Minister of State for Northern Ireland. She currently runs the Defence and Security Forum which is a foreign and defence affairs think tank. She launched the Algeria British Business Council in 2005 and regularly travels to that country.

Captain The Hon Gerald Maitland-Carew CVO DL

Captain The Hon Gerald Maitland-Carew CVO DL
Captain The Hon Gerald Maitland-Carew CVO DL

Lord Lieutenant of Roxburgh Ettrick & Lauderdale 2007-2016. (HM The Queen’s representative in the Borders of Scotland).

He has been involved with horses all his life being Chairman of World Horse Welfare 2000-2007 and Vice President of it to The Princess Royal 2007-2017.    He has been a Member of the Jockey Club from 1987

He inherited Thirlestane Castle, Lauder, from his Grandmother the Countess of Lauderdale (widow of the 15th Earl) in 1970 when he was a young officer in the army.

He has been indefatigable in the restoration and conservation of the Castle; opening it to visitors and for corporate events in 1982. In 1984 he gifted the main part of the historical Castle to Thirlestane Castle Trust. In return the National Heritage Memorial Fund endowed the Trust for the future upkeep of the Castle. This was the first Trust of it’s kind in the UK to be established for a Historic House.

In 2012 he gifted the Family wing of the Castle to his son Edward who lives there and continues to run the Castle for the Public benefit.    Visit