Michael Pearson, 4th Viscount Cowdray

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Michael Pearson, 4th Viscount Cowdray
Born (1944-06-17) 17 June 1944 (age 70)
Spouse(s) Ellen Erhardt
Marina Rose Cordle Pearson
Parents Weetman Pearson, 3rd Viscount Cowdray
Lady Anne Pamela Bridgeman

Michael Orlando Weetman Pearson, 4th Viscount Cowdray (born 17 June 1944)[1] is a British peer and film producer. He is the 65th richest person and the 10th largest landowner in the United Kingdom.


Early life[edit]

Pearson's father was Weetman Pearson, 3rd Viscount Cowdray (1910–1995).[1][2][3] His paternal grandfather was Harold Pearson, 2nd Viscount Cowdray (1882–1933).[1] His paternal great-grandfather, Weetman Pearson, 1st Viscount Cowdray (1856–1927), became the first Viscount Cowdray in 1917.[1][4]

His mother was Lady Anne Pamela Bridgeman (1913–2009).[1] His maternal grandfather was Orlando Bridgeman, 5th Earl of Bradford (1873–1957).[1] His maternal great-grandfather was George Bridgeman, 4th Earl of Bradford (1845–1915).[1] His maternal great-great-grandfather was Orlando Bridgeman, 3rd Earl of Bradford (1819–1898).[1] His maternal great-great-great-grandfather was George Bridgeman, 2nd Earl of Bradford (1789–1865).[1] His maternal great-great-great-great-grandfather was Orlando Bridgeman, 1st Earl of Bradford (1762–1825).[1] His half-brother, Charles Anthony Pearson, born to the same father but to a different mother, owns the Dunecht estate, including Dunecht House, in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.[4]

He graduated from Gordonstoun, a boarding school in Elgin, Moray, Scotland.[4]


He dabbled in farming and later in finance, working in the City of London.[4] He then served in the British Army.[4]

In the late 1960s, he started a career as a film producer, running the film production company Cupid Productions.[3][5][6] He produced Sympathy for the Devil directed by Jean-Luc Godard in 1968.[6]

Personal life[edit]

In 1970, he had a child out of wedlock, Sebastian William Orlando Pearson, with Barbara Page.[1]

From 1977 to 1984, he was married to Ellen Erhardt.[1] They lived in Ibiza, Spain.[4]

Since 1987, he has been married to Marina Rose Cordle Pearson, the daughter of John Cordle, who served as a Conservative Member of Parliament for Bournemouth East and Christchurch from 1959 to 1974, and for Bournemouth East from 1974 to 1977.[1][2] They have five children:

  • Eliza Anne Venetia Pearson (born 31 May 1988), has a daughter (b.2014) with her partner Leif Christian Kvaal,[7]
  • Emily Jane Marina Pearson (born 13 December 1989),
  • Catrina Sophie Lavinia Pearson (born 13 March 1991),
  • Peregrine John Dickinson Pearson (born 27 October 1994)
  • Montague Orlando William Pearson (born 17 May 1997).[1]

He resides at Cowdray Park in Midhurst, West Sussex.[4][8][9] In 2010, he was the second-richest person in Sussex and the 65th richest person in the UK, with an estimated wealth of £850 million.[8] As of May 2012, he was worth an estimated £500 million.[9] In September 2010, he listed Cowdray Park for £25 million with the intention of downsizing, but he has not found a buyer yet.[9]

Viscount Cowdray is also a supporter of the Eurosceptic UK Independence Party, having donated over £35,000 to the party since 2008.[10]

He is a practising Buddhist.[2]


As a producer[edit]

As an executive producer[edit]


Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Weetman Pearson, 3rd Viscount Cowdray
Viscount Cowdray
Succeeded by