Herbert Gardner, 1st Baron Burghclere

Herbert Colstoun Gardner, 1st Baron Burghclere, PC (9 June 1846 – 6 May 1921) was a British Liberal politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1885 until he was raised to the peerage in 1895. He served as President of the Board of Agriculture between 1892 and 1895.

The Lord Burghclere

Photographed 8 August 1902
President of the Board of Agriculture
In office
25 August 1892 – 21 June 1895
Prime MinisterWilliam Ewart Gladstone
The Earl of Rosebery
Preceded byHenry Chaplin
Succeeded byWalter Long
Personal details
Born9 June 1846 (1846-06-09)
Died6 May 1921 (1921-05-07) (aged 74)
Political partyLiberal
Lady Winifred Herbert
(m. 1890)
  • Hon. Juliet Gardner
  • Alethea Fry, Lady Fry
  • Mary Hope-Morley, Baroness Hollenden
  • Hon. Evelyn Gardner
Alma materTrinity College, Cambridge
"amateur theatricals". Caricature by Spy published in Vanity Fair in 1886.

Early lifeEdit

Gardner was born on 9 June 1846. He was the son of Alan Gardner, 3rd Baron Gardner, by his second wife, the professional actress Juliah Sarah (née Fortescue). However, he was born two years before his parents' marriage and was consequently not allowed to succeed in the barony of Gardner on his father's death in 1883.[1]

His paternal grandparents were Alan Gardner, 2nd Baron Gardner, an admiral in the British Navy, and Charlotte (née Smith) Gardner, third daughter of Robert Smith, 1st Baron Carrington. His maternal grandfather was Edward E. T. Fortescue.[1]

He was educated at Harrow School followed by Trinity Hall, Cambridge.[2]


While at Cambridge, he was a member and eventually manager of the Amateur Dramatic Club which was 'flourishing exceedingly' under his management. He later acted with the Canterbury Old Stagers for whom he and William Yardley wrote some of the best plays and epilogues they produced.[2]

In 1867, Gardner was admitted at Inner Temple and was a Deputy Lieutenant of Middlesex.[3]

Political careerEdit

At the 1885 general election, Gardner was elected Member of Parliament for Saffron Walden, a seat he held until 1895. He served in the Liberal administrations of William Ewart Gladstone and later Lord Rosebery as President of the Board of Agriculture from 1892 to 1895.[4] He was sworn of the Privy Council in 1892 and in 1895 he was raised to the peerage as Baron Burghclere, of Walden in the County of Essex.[5]

Gardner was a director of the P and O Steamship Company. He was an Ecclesiastical Commissioner from 1903 to 1921 and chairman of Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England.

Gardner was also an author of several novels, and of the comedies Time will tell, Our Bitterest Foe, After Dinner and Cousin Zacchary. He published a translation of Virgil's Georgics in 1904.

Personal lifeEdit

On 4 March 1890, Lord Burghclere married Lady Winifred Anne Henrietta Christiana, daughter of Henry Herbert, 4th Earl of Carnarvon and Lady Evelyn Stanhope (a daughter of George Stanhope, 6th Earl of Chesterfield and Anne Stanhope, Countess of Chesterfield). Lady Winifred was the widow of Captain the Hon. Alfred John George Byng (a son of George Byng, 2nd Earl of Strafford), who died in 1887.[6] Together, they were the parents of four daughters:[7]

Lord Bughclere died in May 1921, aged 74. As he had no sons the barony became extinct on his death. Lady Burghclere died in September 1933, aged 69.[1]


Rifle and Spear with the Zulu. The life of Alan Cosltoun Gardner Soldier Hunter and Politician

  1. ^ a b c thepeerage.com Herbert Colstoun Gardner, 1st and last Baron Burghclere of Walden
  2. ^ a b "Gardner, Herbert Colstoun (GRDR864HC)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  3. ^ Debretts Guide to the House of Commons 1886
  4. ^ Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Herbert Gardner
  5. ^ "No. 26649". The London Gazette. 2 August 1895. p. 4364.
  6. ^ Gordon, Peter (2009). The Political Diaries of the Fourth Earl of Carnarvon, 1857-1890: Volume 35: Colonial Secretary and Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland. Cambridge University Press. p. 91. ISBN 9780521194051. Retrieved 22 May 2019.
  7. ^ a b c d Kidd, Charles, Williamson, David (editors). Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage (1990 edition). New York: St Martin's Press, 1990.
  8. ^ "Fry, Sir Geoffrey Storrs (1888-1960) 1st Baronet and ministerial secretary - cudl-atom". archive.lib.cam.ac.uk. Retrieved 23 September 2017.


  • Lady Winifred Burghclere and her troublesome daughters. Four immoral tales from the Roaring Twenties. by William Cross. ISBN 978-1-905914-41-8 (2017) Book Midden Publishing.

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
New constituency Member of Parliament for Saffron Walden
Succeeded by
Charles Gold
Political offices
Preceded by
Henry Chaplin
President of the Board of Agriculture
Succeeded by
Walter Long
Peerage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baron Burghclere