Matthew White Ridley, 4th Viscount Ridley

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Viscount Ridley in the robes of a Knight Companion of the Order of the Garter

Matthew White Ridley, 4th Viscount Ridley, KG GCVO TD DL (29 July 1925 – 22 March 2012),[1] was a British nobleman. He notably served as Lord Steward of the Household from 1989 to 2001.[2]

Background, education and military service[edit]

Ridley was the son of Matthew White Ridley, 3rd Viscount Ridley, and Ursula Lutyens, daughter of Sir Edwin Lutyens. His younger brother Nicholas Ridley, Baron Ridley of Liddesdale, was a prominent Conservative Party politician who served as a government minister for nearly all of Margaret Thatcher's years as Prime Minister.[3][4] Matthew Ridley was educated at Eton College before joining the Coldstream Guards and serving in Normandy and Germany in 1944-45. Later he joined the Territorial Army, reaching the rank of Brevet Colonel in the Northumberland Hussars: he became Honorary Colonel of that unit in 1979. In 1948 he graduated from Balliol College, Oxford, before serving as an aide-de-camp to the Governor of Kenya.

Public life[edit]

Ridley succeeded his father in the viscountcy in 1964. He was Chairman of Northumberland County Council from 1967 to 1979. He chaired several companies and societies, before serving as Chancellor of the University of Newcastle from 1988 to 1999, as Lord Lieutenant of Northumberland from 1984 to 2000 and as Lord Steward of the Household from 1989 to 2001. He was succeeded by the Duke of Abercorn as Lord Steward in 2001.

Marriage & Children[edit]

Ridley was married on 3 January 1953 to Lady Anne Katharine Gabrielle Lumley (born 16 November 1928, died 2006), daughter of Lawrence Lumley, 11th Earl of Scarbrough. They had four children together:[5]

Ridley died on 22 March 2012 and was succeeded in the viscountcy by his only son.


  1. ^ Published on Friday 23 March 2012 15:31 (29 July 1925). "Viscount Ridley dies aged 86 - Local News". Morpeth Herald. Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  2. ^ Tomlinson, Richard (20 Dec 1992). "They also serve, who only ush". Independent. 
  3. ^ Lundy, Darryl. "Nicholas Ridley". The Peerage. p. 2343 § 23422. [unreliable source?]
  4. ^ Lundy, Darryl. "Matthew White Ridley, 4th Viscount Ridley". The Peerage. p. 8563 § 85621. [unreliable source?]
  5. ^ The Peerage, entry for 4th Viscount Ridley

External links[edit]

Honorary titles
Preceded by
The Duke of Northumberland
Lord Lieutenant of Northumberland
1984 – 2000
Succeeded by
Sir John Buchanan-Riddell, Bt
Lord Steward
1989 – 2001
Succeeded by
The Duke of Abercorn
Academic offices
Preceded by
The Duke of Northumberland
Chancellor of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne
1988 – 1999
Succeeded by
The Lord Patten of Barnes
Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Matthew White Ridley
Viscount Ridley
1964 – 2012
Succeeded by
Matt Ridley