Earl of Donoughmore

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John Hely-Hutchinson (1724–1794) by Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723–1792)

Earl of Donoughmore is a title in the Peerage of Ireland. It was created in 1800 for Richard Hely-Hutchinson, 1st Viscount Donoughmore, with remainder to the heirs male of his mother. He was a General in the British Army and sat in the House of Lords as one of the 28 original Irish Representative Peers from 1800 to 1825. Hely-Hutchinson had already been created Viscount Donoughmore, of Knocklofty in the County of Tipperary, in the Peerage of Ireland in 1797, and was made Viscount Hutchinson, of Knocklofty in the County of Tipperary, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, in 1821. These titles were also created with remainder to the heirs male of his mother. Lord Donoughmore was the eldest son of the Irish statesman and lawyer John Hely-Hutchinson, who married Christiana, daughter of Abraham Nixon (or Nickson) and niece and heiress of Richard Hutchinson of Knocklofty in County Tipperary, whose surname she and her husband adopted. In 1783 Christiana was raised to the Peerage of Ireland in honour of her husband as Baroness Donoughmore, of Knocklofty in the County of Tipperary.

The first Earl was succeeded according to the special remainder (and normally in the barony of Donoughmore) by his younger brother, the second Earl. He was also a General in the British Army. In 1801 he was created Baron Hutchinson, of Alexandria and Knocklofty in the County of Tipperary, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, with remainder to the heirs male of his body. Lord Donoughmore also served as Lord-Lieutenant of County Tipperary from 1831 to 1832. On his death in 1832 the barony of 1801 became extinct while he was succeeded in the other titles by his nephew, the third Earl. He was the son of the Honourable Francis Hely-Hutchinson, third son of the first Baroness Donoughmore and John Hely-Hutchinson. He briefly represented Tipperary in the House of Commons and served as Lord-Lieutenant of County Tipperary. He was succeeded by his son, the fourth Earl. He was a Conservative politician and served in the Earl of Derby's second administration as Paymaster-General and President of the Board of Trade. His grandson, the fifth Earl, was also a Conservative politician and held office as Under-Secretary of State for War from 1903 to 1904 under Arthur Balfour. He was succeeded by his son, the sixth Earl, a noted Irish Freemason. His son, the seventh Earl, sat as Conservative Member of Parliament for Peterborough from 1943 to 1945. As of 2012 the titles are held by the latter's eldest son, the eighth Earl, who succeeded in 1981.

Another member of the Hely-Hutchinson family was the Honourable Christopher Hely-Hutchinson (1767–1826), fifth son of Baroness Donoughmore and John Hely-Hutchison. He represented Cork City in the House of Commons. The Honourable Sir Walter Hely-Hutchinson, younger son of the fourth Earl, was the last Governor of the Cape Colony. The Honourable Tim Hely Hutchinson, second son of the eighth Earl, is a publisher.

The ancestral family seat was Knocklofty House, near Clonmel, County Tipperary, in Ireland, which is now a hotel. The Knocklofty Estate was sold by the family in the 1970s.

The heir apparent to the earldom uses the invented courtesy title Viscount Suirdale (pronounced "Shure-dale"). This derives from the fact that the territorial designation of the Irish viscountcy of Donoughmore was erroneously thought to be "of Suirdale".[1]

Barons Donoughmore (1783)[edit]

Earls of Donoughmore (1800)[edit]

The heir apparent is the present holder's eldest son John Michael James Hely-Hutchinson, Viscount Suirdale (b. 1952)

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