Peter Macdonald (Conservative politician)

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Sir Peter Macdonald

Member of Parliament
for Isle of Wight
In office
29 October 1924 – 8 October 1959
Preceded byJ. E. B. Seely, 1st Baron Mottistone
Succeeded byMark Woodnutt
Personal details
Gillis Lake, Nova Scotia, Canada
Died2 December 1961
Ningwood Manor, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight
Political partyConservative

Sir Peter Drummond Macdonald KBE (1895 – 2 December 1961) was a Canadian-born Conservative Party politician in the United Kingdom.[1] He was Member of Parliament (MP) for the Isle of Wight from 1924 to 1959.

Early life[edit]

One of nine children born to Mary and Ronald A MacDonald, he was born in Gillis Lake, Nova Scotia and attended Dalhousie College in Halifax. When World War I began, he left his studies and joined the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force. He was shipped overseas and became a pilot. While serving in Europe, he was wounded in France and hospitalized for three months. He then moved to the United Kingdom where he completed his education at Trinity Hall, Cambridge.[1] During the First World War he served in France, reaching the rank of captain.[1]

Political career[edit]

At the 1923 general election he was chosen by the Conservatives to contest the Isle of Wight constituency, and narrowly failed to unseat the sitting Liberal MP, J. E. B. Seely. Seely held the seat with a majority of 90 votes in a three-way contest, with the Labour Party candidate coming a distant third. When a further general election was called in 1924, MacDonald faced Seely in a straight fight.[2] There was a marked swing to the Conservatives who secured a large majority, and MacDonald was comfortably elected to the House of Commons.[3] He was parliamentary private secretary to Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister, President of the Board of Trade from 1928-1929.[1]

During the Second World War, MacDonald saw service in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, reaching the rank of squadron leader.[1]

MacDonald held a number of positions within the parliamentary Conservative Party including holding the chair of the Imperial Affairs Committee for more than 20 years. He also took part in a number of inter-parliamentary bodies, and was vice-chairman of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (British Group) in 1945–1947.[1] He was created a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the Dissolution Honours of 1945.[1]

MacDonald retired from parliament at the 1959 general election.


He died following a riding accident near his home, Ningwood Manor, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight in December 1961.[1]

Personal life[edit]

He was twice married: his first wife was Lady Jean Hervey, daughter of the Earl of Dundonald. She died in January 1955, and in May 1956 he married Dr. Phoebe Harvey of Shanklin.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Obituary: Sir Peter Macdonald". The Times. 4 December 1961. p. 15.
  2. ^ "Hampshire Seats". The Times. 14 October 1924. p. 7.
  3. ^ "The New House Of Commons. Complete List. Constituencies And Parties". The Times. 31 October 1924. p. 6.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
J. E. B. Seely
Member of Parliament for Isle of Wight
Succeeded by
Mark Woodnutt