Sir Edward Stafford Howard KCB DL JP (28 November 1851 – 8 April 1916), was a British Liberal politician and magistrate.

Background and educationEdit

A member of the influential Howard family headed by the Duke of Norfolk, Howard was the second son of Henry Howard, son of Lord Henry Howard-Molyneux-Howard and nephew of Bernard Howard, 12th Duke of Norfolk. His mother was Charlotte Caroline Georgina Long, daughter of Henry Lawes Long and Catharine Long of Hampton Lodge, Surrey. He was the younger brother of Henry Howard and the elder brother of Lord Howard of Penrith.[1] He was educated at Harrow School and Trinity College, Cambridge.[2] He was called to the bar at Inner Temple.

Political careerEdit

Howard entered Parliament as one of two representatives for Cumberland East at a by-election in 1876, a seat he held until 1885 when the constituency was abolished under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885.[3] At the 1885 general election, he was elected as MP for Thornbury until he was defeated at the 1886 election.[4] He served briefly as Under-Secretary of State for India from April to July 1886 in William Ewart Gladstone's short-lived third administration. Howard was later Senior Commissioner of HM's Woods and Forests. He was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 1900 Birthday Honours[5] and a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) in the 1909 Birthday Honours. He served as Mayor of the town of Llanelly from 1913 to 1916.[6] He was an Ecclesiastical Commissioner from 1914 to his death. He was also a Justice of the Peace and a Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucestershire.[7]


Catherine Meriel (Alcyone), Lady Stepney-Howard (1876-1952), as a child.

Howard married firstly Lady Rachel Anne Georgina, daughter of John Campbell, 2nd Earl Cawdor, in 1876. She died in 1906, leaving one son, Sir Algar Howard, an officer at arms at the College of Arms in London, and two daughters, Ruth and Alianore.

Lady Howard StepneyEdit

He married secondly, in 1911, Catharine Meriel, MBE,[8] only child of Sir Emile Algernon Arthur K. Cowell-Stepney, 11th/2nd and last Baronet, by hon. Margaret Warren, fourth daughter of the second baron de Tabley. After Howard's death, at the age of 64 in 1916, Lady Howard served the remainder of his term as Mayor of Llanelly. She was a JP from 1920; a Carmarthenshire County Councillor; and a Dame of the Order of St. John.[9] She lived at Cily or Cilymaenllwyd,[10] Llanelly, and at Woodend, South Ascot. Her telephone numbers were Llanelly 2 and Ascot 37. She was a member of the Ladies' Hyde Park and Bath clubs.[11] She was granted authority, by royal licence, to take additional surname of Stepney in 1922,[11] and died on 8 June 1952.

Youngest daughterEdit

Margaret Catherine Marged Stepney Howard Stepney (London, 20 January 1913-London, 22 January 1953), of Cilymaenllwyd, Llanelly, and Chase End, Compton Avenue, Hampstead Lane, London,[12] was the daughter of Sir Stafford by his second wife, Alcyone Cowell-Stepney. She married in 1933 Patrick Wyndham Murray-Threipland (1904-1957), only son of Colonel William Murray Threipland, had one son and divorced in 1938. In later life she was a friend and patron of Dylan Thomas.

Younger SonEdit

Captain Stafford Vaughan Stepney Howard, (3 September 1915 – 1991). Changed his surname from Howard-Stepney to Howard by deed poll in August 1950, on inheriting the family estates in Cumbria, which included Greystoke Castle.[13] He stood, unsuccessfully, twice for Parliament in the Liberal interest, in south Gloucestershire in 1950 and in 1951 the Penrith and the Border constituency. He was however a parish and county councillor, chairman of Penrith and Border Liberal Party, chairman of the Ullswater Outward Bound Trust, served on the Lake District Planning Board and the Ullswater Preservation Society,[14] and was High Sheriff of Cumbria in 1979.

He married, firstly, Ursula Priscilla Marie Gabrielle, daughter of Colonel Sir James Nockells Horlick, 4th Bt., on 15 July 1936 (they divorced in 1940), and secondly, Mary Gracia (1913-2004), daughter of George Wilder Neville, of Portsmouth, Virginia and New York City, on 24 October 1940. Gracia became a trustee of the Shrewsbury Hospital in Sheffield in 1965. By his first wife he had the GCHQ operative and mathematician Nicholas Stafford Howard (20 Jul 1937-17 Feb 2008), of Johnby Hall, Penrith,[15] and by his second he had two daughters and a further son Lt.-Col. Murray Bernard Neville Cyprian Howard, OBE (b 1942-), who inherited Greystoke Castle.


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Howard, Edward Stafford (HWRT868ES)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  3. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1977]. British parliamentary election results 1832–1885 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 367–368. ISBN 0-900178-26-4.
  4. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 287. ISBN 0-900178-27-2.
  5. ^ "No. 27200". The London Gazette. 8 June 1900. pp. 3629–3630.
  6. ^ Brief biographies of Sir Stafford Howard and Lady Catherine Howard Stepney
  7. ^ Debretts Guide to the House of Commons 1886
  8. ^ Catharine Meriel, Lady Howard. Y.M.C.A. Worker in South Wales., 7 June 1918.
  9. ^ Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem, 25 June 1935, Officer
  10. ^ The headstones that marked the Howard Stepney and Murray-Threipland pet cemetery at Cilymaenllwyd are now at Fingask Castle.
  11. ^ a b Kelly's Handbook 1936
  12. ^ Deed Poll, May 1952
  13. ^ London Gazette, 29 August 1950, signed by his half-brother Algar Howard, Garter, College of Arms, London.
  14. ^ Cumberland & Westmorland Herald, 14 February 2004.
  15. ^ Cumberland & Westmorland Herald:

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Charles Howard
William Nicholson Hodgson
Member of Parliament for Cumberland East
With: Charles Howard 1876–1879
George Howard 1879–1880, 1881–1885
Sir Richard Musgrave, Bt 1880–1881
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Thornbury
Succeeded by
John Plunkett
Political offices
Preceded by
Sir Ughtred Kay-Shuttleworth, Bt
Under-Secretary of State for India
Succeeded by
Sir John Eldon Gorst