Death of Lord Strathmore at the age of 58

Lord Strathmore, who died at the weekend.
Lord Strathmore, who died at the weekend.

The 18th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, Michael Fergus Bowes-Lyon, has died after a long illness. He was 58.

A former Scots Guards captain, Lord Strathmore was born on June 7, 1957, the Queen’s first cousin once removed and great-nephew to the late Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.

He was educated at Sunningdale School of Eton College, Aberdeen University and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

The Earl of Strathmore succeeded his father Fergus, the 17th earl, in 1987 and was a Conservative whip in the House of Lords from 1989 to 1994.

A qualified City of London stockbroker, the earl was a director on the boards of a number of companies and was past president of the Boys’ Brigade, before he retired to Glamis Castle with his family to take an active role in the management of the property, its 17,000-acre estate and farming enterprises.

The 14th century family seat was the late Queen Mother’s childhood home and Lord Strathmore – who walked behind Prince Charles and Prince William at the Queen Mother’s funeral - was considered the head of the Queen’s Scottish family.

The earl was married three times, firstly to Isobel Charlotte Weatherall in 1984, to Dr Damaris Stuart-William in 2005 and to Karen Baxter in 2012.

Lord Strathmore met Mrs Baxter while she was managing the former David Irons store in Forfar, which he acquired in 2005 from the Irons family.

Its retiring owners, Marshall and Michael Irons, were delighted their shop was to be saved from being turned into a pub and the acquisition fulfilled one of Lord Strathmore’s boyhood dreams. The business was sold in 2014 due to economic pressures on Forfar’s town centre.

Lord Strathmore died on Saturday morning.

He is survived by four sons, the eldest of whom, Simon Patrick Bowes-Lyon, will succeed him as the 19th earl, his sisters Lady Elizabeth Leeming and Lady Diana Godfrey-Faussett and his mother Mary Pamela, Dowager Countess of Strathmore.