Donald Bruce, Baron Bruce of Donington

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The Right Honourable
The Lord Bruce of Donington
Donald Bruce 1949.jpg
Member of Parliament for Portsmouth North
In office
6 July 1945 – 3 February 1950
Preceded by William Milbourne James
Succeeded by Constituency Abolished
Personal details
Born 3 October 1912
Died 18 April 2005 (aged 92)
Spouse(s) Joan Letitia Butcher (1939-1980)
Cyrena Heard (1981-2005)
Children 4
Military service
Rank Major

Donald William Trevor Bruce, Baron Bruce of Donington (3 October 1912 – 18 April 2005) was a British soldier, businessman and politician.

Early life[edit]

The son of William Trevor Bruce was born in Norbury, South London. He was educated at Donington Grammar School in Donington, Lincolnshire and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1936.

Military career[edit]

Bruce served in the Territorial Army from 1931 to 1935, later in World War II, in the Royal Signals, where he reached the rank of Major in 1942,[1] serving in the anti-aircraft defence of London before joining U.S. General Dwight D. Eisenhower's staff as an Intelligence Officer in the preparations for D-Day for which he won a mention in dispatches.

Parliamentary career[edit]

From 1945 to 1950 Bruce was Labour Member of Parliament (MP) for Portsmouth North.[2] During the same time he was Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Minister of Health Aneurin Bevan, and compiled many notes and documents with the aim of writing a biography of Bevan, a task later taken up with the assistance of Bruce's papers by Michael Foot.[3]

When Portsmouth North was abolished in 1950, Bruce stood in the successor seat of Portsmouth West, but was narrowly beaten by the Conservative Terence Clarke.

After Parliament[edit]

He also set up his own accountancy firm and ran it until 1977 when it merged with Halpern and Woolf which itself merged with Casson Beckman merging finally with Baker Tilly for whom Bruce still worked in his eighties as a consultant.

On 20 January 1975, he was created a life peer as Baron Bruce of Donington, of Rickmansworth in the County of Hertfordshire. In 1976, he was appointed to the European Parliament, but resigned in 1979.


Lord Bruce of Donington was married twice, firstly to Joan Letitia Butcher in 1939, and after their divorce in 1980, secondly to Cyrena Heard (née Shaw) in 1981. He had four children by his first wife, one son and three daughters (two of whom predeceased him).


  • Bruce, Donald (1997). "Nye". In Goodman, Geoffrey (ed.). The State of the Nation: The Political Legacy of Aneurin Bevan. London: Gollancz. pp. 130–155. ISBN 0-575-06308-4. 


  1. ^ "Lord Bruce of Donington". The Independent. 20 April 2005. Retrieved 4 January 2017. 
  2. ^ "Lord Bruce of Donington". The Guardian. 19 April 2005. Retrieved 4 January 2017. 
  3. ^ Foot, Michael (1975). Aneurin Bevan 1897–1945 (2nd ed.). St Albans: Paladin. p. 9. ISBN 0-586-08194-1. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Milbourne James
Member of Parliament for
Portsmouth North

Constituency abolished