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The Earl of Selkirk in 1940


Group Captain George "Geordie" Nigel Douglas-Hamilton, 10th Earl of Selkirk, KT, GCMG, GBE, AFC, AE, PC, QC (Scot.), (4 January 1906 - 24 November 1994) was a Scottishmarker nobleman and Conservative politician.

Born at Merly, Wimbornemarker, Dorsetmarker, he was the second son of the 13th Duke of Hamilton and Brandon and Nina Mary Benita, youngest daughter of Major R. Poore, Salisbury. He was educated at Eton Collegemarker, Balliol College, Oxfordmarker, Edinburgh University (LLB) and at the University of Bonnmarker, Vienna Universitymarker and the Sorbonnemarker. He was admitted to the Faculty of Advocates in 1935, taking silk in 1959.

He was a member of Edinburghmarker Town Council from 1935-40 and served as a Commissioner of General Board of Control from 1936-39 and as a Commissioner for Special Areas in Scotland from 1937-39. He commanded 603 Squadron in the Royal Auxiliary Air Force from 1934-38.

World War II

With the outbreak of World War II, Douglas-Hamilton joined the Royal Air Force. He served as Fighter Command's chief intelligence officer and the personal assistant to Air Chief Marshal Dowding. Douglas-Hamilton was also involved in countering the German task force operating near Ceylon.

Douglas-Hamilton was twice Mentioned in Despatches and awarded the Air Force Cross in 1938 and the OBE in 1941.

He succeeded to Earldom upon the death of his father in 1940, under terms of special remainder, his elder brother becoming the 14th Duke of Hamilton.

Post war activity

He was elected as a Scottish representative peer from 1945-63, during which time he served as a Lord in Waiting to King George VI (1951-52) and to Queen Elizabeth II (1952-53). He held Ministerial office as Paymaster-General from November 1953-December 1955, as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster from December 1955-January 1957 and as First Lord of the Admiralty from 1957-October 1959.

He was UK High Commissioner for Singapore and Commissioner General for South-East Asia from 1959-63, and UK Council Representative to Southeast Asia Treaty Organization from 1960-63.

He was appointed a Privy Counsellor in 1955, and awarded the GCMG in 1959 and the GBE in 1963. He was appointed a Knight of the Thistle in 1976.

He held the office of Deputy Keeper of Holyroodhousemarker between 1937 until his death, the Duke of Hamilton being hereditary Keeper.

He was made a Freeman of Hamiltonmarker, Scotlandmarker, in 1938. He was also an Honorary Chief of the Saulteaux Indians, 1967, and an Honorary Citizen of the City of Winnipegmarker and of the town of Selkirk, Manitobamarker.

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