Charles McLaren, 3rd Baron Aberconway
|The 3rd Baron Aberconway|
|Spouse(s)||1. Deirdre Knewstub
2. Ann Bullard (née Aymer)
|Father||Henry McLaren, 2nd Baron Aberconway|
|Mother||Christabel Mary Melville Macnaghten|
|Born||16 April 1913|
|Died||4 February 2003(aged 89)|
Charles Melville McLaren, 3rd Baron Aberconway, JP (16 April 1913 – 4 February 2003) was a British industrialist and horticulturalist. He was the son of Henry McLaren, 2nd Baron Aberconway, and Christabel Macnaghten.
As a young man, he became a director of John Brown & Company, where his father was chairman. Due to this connection, he took part in the secret, unofficial meeting of British businessmen with Hermann Göring arranged by Birger Dahlerus in August 1939 as a last-ditch effort to forestall war.
During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Artillery, becoming a second lieutenant. After the war, he took a more active role in the family corporations, preparing to succeed his father. He was also a director of Westland Aircraft from 1947 to 1985. He was made a Justice of the Peace for Denbighshire in 1946, and High Sheriff of Denbighshire in 1950.
In 1953, he succeeded his father in the barony, the chairmanship of John Brown and English China Clays, and various other industrial interests. He continued in these chairmanships until 1986 and 1984, respectively. Despite his corporate responsibilities, Lord Aberconway took a keen interest in horticulture. Besides maintaining the family's Bodnant Garden, he was the President of the Royal Horticultural Society from 1961 to 1983 and oversaw the management of the Chelsea Flower Show. His annual assertion became famous:
I think I can say, without fear of contradiction, that this is the finest Chelsea Flower Show ever
He married Deirdre Knewstub on 6 December 1941, and had three children:
- Hon. Julia Harriet McLaren (b. 22 September 1942), married Capt. Charles Ridley and has issue
- Dr. Hon. Caroline Mary McLaren (b. 24 October 1944), married Raimund Sargent and has issue
- Henry Charles McLaren, 4th Baron Aberconway (b. 1948)
- Hon. Michael Duncan McLaren, QC (b. 29 November 1958), married Caroline Stacey and has issue; present manager of Bodnant Garden.
- Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2007; online edn, Oxford University Press, December 2007
- Lord Aberconway: [Obituary], at The Times, February 5, 2003
- Portraits of Charles McLaren, 3rd Baron Aberconway at the National Portrait Gallery, London
John Charles Wynne-Finch
|High Sheriff of Denbighshire
|Peerage of the United Kingdom|