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Walter Francis John Montagu Douglas Scott


(9th Duke of Buccleuch; 11th Duke of Queensberry)

1923 - 2007

Noble, politician and landowner. Born in Edinburgh, the only son of the 8th Duke, the young Buccleuch was educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford, where he studied agriculture and forestry. He joined the Royal Navy as an ordinary seaman in 1942 and was commissioned the following year, seeing action in the North Atlantic. Following the war, he joined the 'family firm' which ran one of the largest private land-holdings in Britain, becoming a Director of the Buccleuch Estates in 1949. He was romantically linked with Princess Margaret but is said to have resisted joining the Royal family and instead married former model Jane McNeill of Colonsay at St Giles Kirk (Edinburgh) in 1953. The couple initially lived at Eildon Hall near Melrose.

He served as Conservative Member of Parliament for Edinburgh North (1960-73) and as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Scotland (1962-64). He entered the House of Lords on succeeding to the Dukedoms of Buccleuch and Queensberry in 1973, serving until the removal of the hereditary peers in 1999, although Buccleuch had given a robust defence of his position. He was Lord Lieutenant for Roxburgh (1974-98) and Ettrick and Lauderdale (1975-98).

Buccleuch was a supporter of countryside pursuits and, well aware of his duties as custodian of several grand houses and 113,300 ha (280,000 acres), he was one of the first to open his houses and land for public access. He was President of the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (1969). Despite being paralysed following a fall from a horse, Buccleuch continued with his work and public duties with considerable courage. He had close involvement with several disability charities, including the Royal Blind School in Edinburgh and RADAR.

Buccleuch died at Bowhill, his home near Selkirk.


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