Sir Laming Worthington-Evans, 1st Baronet
|The Right Honourable
Sir Laming Worthington-Evans
|Worthington-Evans in 1921|
|Secretary of State for War|
13 February 1921 – 19 October 1922
|Prime Minister||David Lloyd George|
|Preceded by||Winston Churchill|
|Succeeded by||The Earl of Derby|
6 November 1924 – 4 June 1929
|Prime Minister||Stanley Baldwin|
|Preceded by||Stephen Walsh|
|Succeeded by||Tom Shaw|
|Born||23 August 1868|
|Died||14 February 1931|
Background and education
Born Laming Evans, he was the son of Worthington Evans and Susanah Laming. He assumed the prefix surname of Worthington by Royal Licence in 1916, although he had been calling himself Worthington Evans (without a hyphen) for many years. He trained as a solicitor.
Worthington-Evans unsuccessfully contested the Colchester constituency in 1906. He won the seat in January 1910, holding it until 1929, when he transferred to the London seat of Westminster St George's. He served in David Lloyd George's coalition government as Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Munitions from 1916 to 1918, as Minister of Blockade in 1918, as Minister of Pensions from 1919 to 1920, as Minister without Portfolio from 1920 to 1921 and as Secretary of State for War from 1921 to 1922. In 1919 he was sworn of the Privy Council.
As with many Cabinet Ministers in the Lloyd George Coalition, Worthington-Evans declined office in Andrew Bonar Law's new government when Lloyd George fell in October 1922. However alone amongst the "Coalition Conservatives" he accepted an invitation the following May when Law retired and was succeeded by Stanley Baldwin. He served under Baldwin as Postmaster General between 1923 and 1924 and as Secretary of State for War between 1924 and 1929.
Whilst Worthington-Evans was Secretary of State for War he famously said "If the Arab population realised that the peaceful control of Mesopotamia (Iraq) ultimately depends on our intention of bombing women and children, I’m very doubtful if we shall gain that acquiescence of the fathers and husbands of Mesopotamia to which the Secretary of State for the Colonies (Winston Churchill) looks forward." He was one of the British delegates to the International Economic Conference at Genoa in 1922. He was a member of several Conservative and Unionist Party committees including the Policy committee which he chaired in 1927. He also served on various Cabinet Committees, including those relating to Northern Ireland, and Unemployment. He became chairman of the latter in August 1923. He was a member of the British delegation that negotiated the Anglo-Irish Treaty.
Worthington-Evans was made a Baronet, of Colchester in the County of Essex, in 1916 and appointed a GBE in 1922.
He married Gertrude Hale in 1898 and had one son and one daughter. He died in February 1931, aged 62, and was succeeded in the baronetcy by his son, William. The papers of Worthington-Evans (from 1895-1931) are held at the Bodleian Library, University of Oxford.
- Who Was Who
- Dictionary of National Biography
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by Sir Laming Worthington-Evans
- Portraits of Laming Worthington-Evans at the National Portrait Gallery, London
- Bodlein Library, holdings of personal papers
- Laming Worthington-Evans on 'How to Vote at the Election' - sound recording from the British Library