John Crichton-Stuart, 6th Marquess of Bute

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

John Crichton-Stuart, 6th Marquess of Bute, KBE (27 February 1933 – 21 July 1993) was a Scottish peer, benefactor and patron of the arts.

Early life[edit]

John Crichton-Stuart was born in Mayfair, London on 27 February 1933, [1] fifteen minutes before his twin brother David. As such, he was the eldest son of John Crichton-Stuart, 5th Marquess of Bute and Lady Eileen Forbes, the younger daughter of Bernard Forbes, 8th Earl of Granard and Beatrice Mills Forbes, an American socialite who was the daughter of Ogden Mills.[2] He was known as Lord Cardiff before the death of his grandfather in 1947, when he became Earl of Dumfries.[3] He attended Ampleforth College and, after national service in the Scots Guards, studied history at Trinity College, Cambridge.[2]

On 19 April 1955, he married, firstly, Beatrice Nicola Grace Weld-Forester, and they divorced in 1977.[1] They had four children:

In 1978 he married, secondly, Jennifer, daughter of John Home-Rigg and former wife of Gerald Percy.[1] Jennifer, Marchioness of Bute, is a Patroness of the Royal Caledonian Ball.[4]

Interests in art and business[edit]

Crichton-Stuart inherited estates in Wales, England and Scotland, including six castles and a highly esteemed collection of European paintings.[2] On his father's death in 1956, he inherited the title and estates. To settle death duties, he sold property in Cardiff to the city corporation and transferred Robert Adam houses in Charlotte Square, Edinburgh to the National Trust for Scotland. 6 Charlotte Square became the official residence of the Secretary of State for Scotland.[3]

He was Lord Lieutenant of Bute and, later, of Argyll and Bute.[3] As owner of Bute Fabrics, the largest employer on the Isle of Bute, Crichton-Stuart redirected the focus of the company towards designer fabrics and contemporary furniture.[2]

He held office in the National Trust for Scotland for twenty-five years, while its membership increased five-fold. From 1985, he was Chairman of the Trustees of the National Museums of Scotland, securing funding for the new Museum of Scotland. Despite opposition from Prince Charles, he ensured the project proceeded and saw the laying of the foundation stone in April 1993, shortly before his death.[3]


Personal life[edit]

John Crichton-Stuart was a private man who eschewed publicity and grand gestures and refused to take part in the activities of the House of Lords on the grounds that "the scene" was uncongenial.[2] After his second marriage, he restored Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute.[3]

Crichton-Stuart died on 21 July 1993.[5] He was survived by his second wife, Jennifer, and three children by his first marriage. His successor, the 7th Marquess, is Johnny Dumfries, former racing driver, who is known as John Bute.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Mosley, Charles (2003), Burke’s Peerage & Baronetage (107th ed.), Crans, Switzerland: Burke’s Peerage, p. 2947 
  2. ^ a b c d e Jones, Peter. "John Crichton_Stuart" (PDF). The Royal Society of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Gavin Stamp (2004), "Stuart, John Crichton-, sixth marquess of Bute (1933–1993)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, online edn, Oct 2009, Oxford University Press, retrieved 22 April 2012 
  4. ^ "Patronesses". Royal Caledonian Ball. 
  5. ^ Dalyell, Tam (1993), Obituary: The Marquess of Bute, The Independent, retrieved 16 July 2017 

External links[edit]

Honorary titles
Preceded by
Ronald Graham
Lord Lieutenant of Buteshire
Office abolished
Preceded by
The Lord Maclean
Lord Lieutenant of Argyll and Bute
Succeeded by
The Duke of Argyll
Peerage of Great Britain
Preceded by
John Crichton-Stuart
Marquess of Bute
Succeeded by
John Crichton-Stuart