Charles Delacourt-Smith, Baron Delacourt-Smith

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Charles George Percy Delacourt-Smith, Baron Delacourt-Smith, PC, JP (25 April 1917 – 2 August 1972[1]) was a British trade unionist and Labour Party politician.

Background and education[edit]

Born in Windsor and named after his father, he was the only son of Charles Smith and his wife Ethel.[2] He was educated at The Windsor Boys' School and went then to Wadham College, Oxford, graduating with a Master of Arts[3]

Working life[edit]

Delacourt-Smith worked as librarian for the Oxford Union Society until 1938, when he became employed at the New Fabian Research Bureau as a research assistant.[2] In 1939, he came to the Civil Service Clerical Association and was an assistant secretary until 1953.[2] Subsequently, he joined the Post Office Engineering Union, serving as its general secretary 1967.[1] In 1960, he was nominated a Justice of the Peace, assigned to the County of London.[2]

Political career[edit]

Following the outbreak of the Second World War, Delacourt-Smith entered the Royal Engineers in July 1940.[2] He was commissioned in January 1943 and was transferred to the Royal Army Service Corps, where he was promoted to captain and was mentioned in despatches.[3] After the end of the war Delacourt-Smith was admitted to the British House of Commons in 1945, having been elected for Colchester.[3] He represented the constituency until 1950 and during this time was Parliamentary Private Secretary to Philip Noel-Baker in the latter's capacity as Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations.[3] In 1947, he was chosen as an executive member of Labour's Research Department, a position he held for the next four years.[2]

Delacourt-Smith was created a life peer as Baron Delacourt-Smith, of New Windsor, in the Royal County of Berkshire in 1967 and thus was enabled to a seat in the House of Lords.[4] Two years later he was appointed Minister of State for Technology and on this occasion sworn of the Privy Council.[1] In 1970, when the Conservative Party took office he was replaced as Minister.[1]

Personal life[edit]

In 1939, he married Margaret, the daughter of Frederick Hando.[5] They both had one son and two daughters.[5] Together with his wife and younger daughter, he assumed the additional surname Delacourt by a deed poll in 1967.[6] He died, aged 55, at the Westminster Hospital, London in 1972, after suffering a stroke while making a speech in the House of Lords, being survived by his wife.[5] Two years after his death she received a life peerage in her own right.[7]


  • Democratic Sweden (1938), Smith, G. and Cole, M. (eds), Routledge
  • Britain's Food Supplies in Peace and War (1940), Smith, C., Routledge
  • Modern Turkey (1940), Parker, J. and Smith, C., Routledge


  1. ^ a b c d Silva (1973), p. 510
  2. ^ a b c d e f Who's Who (1963), p. 2825
  3. ^ a b c d Dod (1969), p. 78
  4. ^ "No. 44432". The London Gazette. 17 October 1967. p. 11275. 
  5. ^ a b c Dod (2004), p. 538
  6. ^ "No. 44422". The London Gazette. 3 October 1967. pp. 10717–10718. 
  7. ^ "No. 46352". The London Gazette. 24 September 1974. p. 7918. 


  • Who's Who 1963. London: Adam & Charles Black Ltd. 1963. 
  • Charles Roger Dod and Robert Philip Dod (1969). Dod's Parliamentary Companion 1969. Dod's Parliamentary Companion Ltd. 
  • Charles Roger Dod and Robert Phipps Dod (2004). Dod's Parliamentary Companion 2004. Vacher Dod Publishing Ltd. ISBN 0-905702-43-3. 
  • Michel Silva, ed. (1973). Britannica Book of the Year 1973. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc. ISBN 0-85229-282-1. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Oswald Lewis
Member of Parliament for Colchester
Succeeded by
Cuthbert Alport
Non-profit organization positions
Preceded by
D. J. W. Coward
General Secretary of the Post Office Engineering Union
Succeeded by
Bryan Stanley
Political offices
Preceded by
Reg Prentice
Joseph Mallalieu
Minister of State for Technology
With: Eric Varley
Succeeded by
Sir John Eden
The Earl of Bessborough