George Ambrose Lloyd, M.P. for West Staffordshire

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Description:This postcard was published to celebrate the election of George Ambrose Lloyd as the Liberal Unionist M.P. for the West Staffordshire Constituency in 1910.

At the time West Staffordshire had 21 electoral districts: Berkswich, Blymhill, Brewood, Cannock, Bridgtown, Chadsmoor, Five Ways, Hednesford, Littleworth, Cheslyn Hay, Church Eaton, Gnosall, Great Haywood, Hilderstone, Milwich, Penkridge, Seighford, Stafford, Stone, Stowe and Wheaton Aston.

George Lloyd was born in Warwickshire in 1879 into a family of Quakers, bankers (Lloyds Bank) and steel manufacturers (of Birmingham). He was educated at Eton and Trinity College Cambridge and In 1901 joined the family firm as its youngest director. In 1903 the company became known as Stewarts & Lloyds after a merger of two of the largest iron and steel manufacturers in the United Kingdom.

In 1911 Lloyd married Blanche Isabella Lascelles, daughter of the Hon. Frederick Lascelles. They had a son, Alexander Lloyd.

Blanche Lascelles held the office of Maid of Honour to HM Queen Alexandra between 1905 and 1911. In 1911 she married George Ambrose Lloyd. Then she held the office of Lady in Waiting to HRH The Princess Royal between 1941 and 1945. She was appointed Dame of Grace, Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem and held the office of Extra Lady in Waiting to HRH The Princess Royal in 1945.

As a Lieutenant (later promoted to Captain) in the Warwickshire Yeomanry, Lloyd was called up three days after the UK entered the First World War. During the war he served on the staff of Sir Ian Hamilton at Gallipoli and landed with the ANZACs on the first day of the campaign. In December 1918 he was appointed Governor of Bombay and completed his term in 1923. He was then made a Privy Counsellor. In 1924 Lloyd returned to Parliament as a Conservative M.P. for Eastbourne, until 1925, when he was made 1st Baron Lloyd, of Dolobran, named after his former ancestral home in the County of Montgomery (later Powys), Wales.

In 1925 he was appointed High Commissioner to Egypt, serving until 1929. During his time in Cairo, he served with T. E. Lawrence (of Arabia) and also the Arab Bureau. Lloyd's portrait appears in Lawrence's book 'Seven Pillars of Wisdom'.
In 1930, Lloyd became President of the Navy League and from July 1937 he was Chairman of the British Council, an organisation specialising in international cultural and educational opportunities. He oversaw an increase in lectureships and during the early months of the Second World War made cultural tours of neutral capitals to maintain sympathy for the UK’s cause. As head of the British Council, Lloyd operated his own intelligence network, and one his spies, was the journalist and author Ian Colvin, who was the Berlin correspondent of the News Chronicle. Unusually, Lloyd had a privileged access to the secret reports of MI6, the UK Intelligence service.

In May 1940 when Churchill became Prime Minister, he appointed Lloyd as Secretary of State for the Colonies and in December 1940, he was given the additional job of Leader of the House of Lords.

Lloyd was a leading proponent of the future London Central Mosque. As early as 1939 he worked with a Mosque Committee and believed the gift of a site for the mosque would serve as "a tribute to the loyalty of the Muslems of the (British) Empire and would have a good effect on Arab countries of the Middle East”.

Lord George Ambrose Lloyd died in February 1941 and Lady Blanche Isabella Lloyd died in December 1969.

This postcard was published by W H Smith & Son, Stafford.


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