Richard Coleridge, 4th Baron Coleridge

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Captain Richard Duke Coleridge, 4th Baron Coleridge, KBE, DL, RN (24 September 1905 – 20 May 1984) had a distinguished naval career and served as the first Executive Secretary of NATO from 1952-1970.[1]


Coleridge was the son of Geoffrey Coleridge, 3rd Baron Coleridge of Ottery St. Mary and Jessie Alethea Mackarness. He married Cecilia Rosamund Fisher, daughter of Admiral Sir William Wordsworth Fisher, on 28 August 1936.[2] Coleridge was educated at the Royal Naval College, Osborne, Isle of Wight and at the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, Devon, in England. In 1926 he was promoted to Sub-Lieutenant with Seniority,[3] and in 1936 to Lieutenant-Commander.[4] He served in World War II and was with the War Cabinet Office between 1940 and 1941.[2]

He was with the Joint Staff Mission to Washington in 1941, and was Deputy Secretary to the British Joint Staff and Combined Chiefs of Staff between 1942 and 1945.[2] Coleridge was invested OBE in 1944. He was decorated with the U.S. Legion of Merit on 27 November 1945.[2][5] He was U.K. Secretary to the Military Staff Committee of the U.N. between 1946 and 1948, and was Secretary to the British Joint Services Mission to Washington, D.C. in 1948. He was Chief Staff Officer to Marshal of the Royal Air Force, Lord Tedder. He was invested as a CBE in 1951.[2] He was promoted to Captain in the Royal Navy in 1952.[6]

Coleridge succeeded to the title of 4th Baron Coleridge of Ottery St. Mary on 27 March 1955. He was invested as a KBE in 1971. He was the first Executive Secretary of NATO from 1952-1970.[1][7] He was Chairman of the Devon and Exeter Savings Bank between 1971 and 1975. He held the office of Deputy Lieutenant of Devon in 1973. He was chairman of the TSB between 1975 and 1984.[2] His wife died in 1991 aged 81.


  1. ^ a b [1] Coleridge in the NATO Archives, Brussels
  2. ^ a b c d e f Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition volume 1, page 852
  3. ^ London Gazette 2 August 1927
  4. ^ London Gazette 19 June 1936
  5. ^ [2] Harry S Truman Presidential Library and Museum
  6. ^ London Gazette 25 July 1952
  7. ^ [3] NATO Archives

External links[edit]

Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Geoffrey Duke Coleridge
Baron Coleridge Succeeded by
William Duke Coleridge