Samantha Cameron

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Samantha Cameron
Samantha Cameron - crop.jpg
Spouse of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
In role
11 May 2010 – 13 July 2016
Monarch Elizabeth II
Prime Minister David Cameron
Preceded by Sarah Brown
Succeeded by Philip May
Personal details
Born Samantha Gwendoline Sheffield
(1971-04-18) 18 April 1971 (age 45)
London, England
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) David Cameron (m. 1996)
Children 4
Alma mater University of the Arts London
University of the West of England
Occupation Businesswoman
Religion Anglicanism
Nickname(s) SamCam[1]

Samantha Gwendoline Cameron (née Sheffield; born 18 April 1971)[2] is a British businesswoman and the wife of David Cameron, the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Until 13 May 2010, Cameron was the Creative Director of Smythson of Bond Street. Cameron took on a part-time consultancy role at Smythson after her husband became Prime Minister.

Early life[edit]

Charles II, Cameron's 8th great grandfather

Samantha Cameron is the elder daughter of Sir Reginald Sheffield, 8th Baronet[3] (a landowner descended from King Charles II of England[citation needed]) and Annabel Lucy Veronica Jones. Sir Reginald and Annabel married on 11 November 1969. Samantha's sister, Emily Julia Sheffield was born in 1973;[4] the couple divorced in 1974.

Annabel later remarried to William Waldorf Astor III, nephew of her own stepfather Michael Langhorne Astor. They reside at Ginge Manor in Oxfordshire.

Samantha Cameron's birth was registered in Paddington, London.[5] She grew up on the 300-acre (121-hectare) estate of Normanby Hall,[6] five miles (8 km) north of Scunthorpe in North Lincolnshire.

Notable ancestors[edit]

Samantha Cameron is the great-granddaughter of Conservative Member of Parliament Sir Berkeley Sheffield, and Sir Bede Edmund Hugh Clifford, Governor of the Bahamas, Mauritius and Trinidad and Tobago, who was a descendant of Charles II, and of the author and playwright Enid Bagnold. Sir Bede was the father of her maternal grandmother, Patricia Clifford.

Through her great-great-great grandfather Sir Robert Sheffield, 4th Baronet, she is a fourth cousin of the late Pamela Harriman, first wife of Randolph Churchill.

Samantha Cameron's family also own a large Yorkshire estate called Sutton Park. In March 2015, unpublished photographs from the City of Leeds archives revealed that the panelling and mantelpiece in the study of Sutton Park had been imported from the Morning Room of Potternewton Hall, near Leeds, which was the ancestral estate of Olive Middleton. Olive was the great grandmother of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. The room's "priceless interior" had been designed by royal architect Henry Flitcroft in the 1720s.[7][8][9]


Cameron was educated at the School of St Helen and St Katharine, an independent school for girls in Abingdon, Oxfordshire[10] and then took A levels at Marlborough College. She did an art foundation course at Camberwell College of Arts and then went on to study Fine Art at the School of Creative Arts, part of the University of the West of England.[11][12]


Sutton Park – the Sheffield family seat

As a Marlborough College schoolfriend of David Cameron's sister Clare, Samantha first met her future husband at a party at the Camerons' house when Samantha was 16.[13] After graduating from Bristol School of Creative Arts, Clare invited her on a Cameron family holiday in Tuscany, Italy, from where the romance with David started.[14] The couple married on 1 June 1996 at the Church of St. Augustine of Canterbury, East Hendred, Oxfordshire, five years before he became an MP.[15]

The couple have had four children: Ivan Reginald Ian Cameron (8 April 2002, Hammersmith and Fulham, London – 25 February 2009, Paddington, London), Nancy Gwen Beatrice Cameron (born 19 January 2004, Westminster, London), Arthur Elwen Cameron (born 14 February 2006, Westminster)[16] and Florence Rose Endellion Cameron (born 24 August 2010, Cornwall). Ivan was born with a rare combination of cerebral palsy and severe epilepsy and died at the age of six at St Mary's Hospital, London.[17] Florence Cameron's third given name, Endellion, is taken from the Cornish village of St Endellion. The couple's fourth child was born early while the Camerons were on holiday in Cornwall.[18][19]

Work and politics[edit]

Cameron's work for Smythson of Bond Street won her a British Glamour Magazine Award for Best Accessory Designer in 2009. She also worked as a spokeswoman for Shiatzy Chen.[20]

Two days after her husband became Prime Minister, she announced she was stepping down from her full-time role to take on a consultancy role within Smythson for two days a week. She said that choice was hers alone and had been made after she discovered she was pregnant again and after what she described as an "understandably difficult year", attributed to the death of her first child, Ivan.[21]

Cameron serves as ambassador for the British Fashion Council and plays a prominent role in London Fashion Week.[22][23] In 2010, she was named in Tatler's top 10 best-dressed list.[24]

Charitable causes[edit]

Cameron is active for a number of charitable causes; and in June 2013 she became a patron for the British charity Vitalise.[25]

Cameron has volunteered for Dress for Success, a non-profit organisation which gives free clothes and advice about job interviews to women who are unemployed.[26] In 2012, she held a benefit for them at Number 10.[26]

On 11 December 2015 it was announced that Cameron would be one of sixteen celebrities to participate in the Great Sport Relief Bake Off, which aired in 2016 as part of that year's Sport Relief fundraiser.[27]

Cameron is an ambassador for the charity Save the Children. In March 2013, after visiting Syrian refugees in Lebanon, Cameron said: “As a mother, it is horrifying to hear the harrowing stories from the children I met today, no child should ever experience what they have. With every day that passes, more children and parents are being killed, more innocent childhoods are being smashed to pieces.” [28][29]

Other issues[edit]

During March 2010, the Daily Mail reported that Cameron may have voted for Tony Blair's Labour party, and that she might vote for Gordon Brown in the 2010 general election, following comments made by Shadow Arts Minister, Ed Vaizey to Andrew Rawnsley during the making of a documentary for Channel 4.[30] However, a Conservative spokesman issued a statement to blogger Iain Dale, stating that "The Mail on Sunday story is not true. Sam has never voted Labour and never will. She took five weeks off work to campaign for the Tories in Stafford in the 1997 general election".[31] Samantha Cameron then issued her own statement: "I did not vote for Tony Blair in 1997 and I have never voted Labour".[32]

Cameron is credited with coining the phrase "There is such a thing as society, it's just not the same thing as the state" (seen as a rejoinder to Margaret Thatcher's famous comment that there is "no such thing" as society),[32] which has been said several times by David Cameron, including in his victory speech following his victory in the Conservative party leadership election in 2005.[33]

The Camerons are notable members of the Chipping Norton set.[34]

Title and styles[edit]

  • 18 April 1971 - 1 June 1996 Miss Samantha Gwendoline Sheffield
  • 1 June 1996 - present: Mrs Samantha Gwendoline Cameron



  1. ^ "General election 2015 sketch: SamCam and George Osborne get down to business". Telegraph. 2 April 2015. Retrieved 22 June 2015. 
  2. ^ McDougall, Linda (26 September 2008). "Tory party conference: Is Samantha Cameron ready for the spotlight?". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 16 April 2010. 
  3. ^ When David Cameron was 'the new whizz kid of politics' BBC News – Newsnight, 6 October 2005
  4. ^ "Person Page 4195". 2 December 2008. Retrieved 22 June 2015. [unreliable source]
  5. ^ England & Wales, Birth Index, 1916–2005 Record for Samantha Gwendoline Sheffield. Retrieved 20 April 2013
  6. ^ Gammell, Caroline (12 May 2010). "Samantha Cameron is youngest 'First Lady' for half a century". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  7. ^ Laycock, Mike. "Duchess of Cambridge's links with stately home near York revealed". The Press (York) – 17 March 2015. Retrieved 22 May 2015. Pine panelling from the morning room had then been installed in a room at Sutton Park at Sutton-on-the-Forest, owned by Sir Reginald Sheffield, father of the Prime Minister’s wife, Samantha Cameron. He said the panelling and mantelpiece were saved because they were part of a priceless interior dating from the 1720s, designed by royal architect Henry Flitcroft. 
  8. ^ A photographic Archive of Leeds, Leodis. "Potternewton Hall, Potternewton Lane". UK Gov. City of Leeds. Retrieved 23 May 2015. 
  9. ^ Poole, David. "Potternewton Hall, Leeds". Heritage Gazette – 18 March 2015. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  10. ^ "The First Wives' Club: Miriam and Samantha wake up to a very new role in life". Daily Mail. London. 12 May 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  11. ^ "Lady in waiting: Samantha Cameron". The Independent. 10 October 2009. Retrieved 17 October 2014. 
  12. ^ Victoria Lambert (29 March 2014). "Why everyone wants a Marlborough missus". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 February 2015. Most famous, of course, is the Duchess of Cambridge, "wife of" our future king. But see also, Samantha Cameron, "wife of" the Prime Minister. Frances Osborne, "wife of" the Chancellor. Sally Bercow, "wife of" the Speaker. Diana Fox, "wife of" the Governor of the Bank of England. 
  13. ^ "Cameron the heartbreaker". Daily Mail. 25 June 2012. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  14. ^ "Cameron takes a break for his sister's wedding". Daily Mail. 25 April 2010. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  15. ^ Lundy, Darryl. "The Peerage p 17890". The Peerage. Retrieved 27 June 2010. [unreliable source]
  16. ^ "Cameron is father for third time". BBC News. 16 February 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2013. 
  17. ^ "Cameron's eldest son Ivan dies". BBC News. 25 February 2009. Retrieved 25 February 2009. 
  18. ^ "Samantha Cameron gives birth to baby girl". The Daily Telegraph. London. 24 August 2010. Retrieved 24 August 2010. 
  19. ^ "Camerons reveal daughter's name". BBC News. 25 August 2010. Retrieved 25 August 2010. 
  20. ^ Glamour Award Winners 2009 Glamour
  21. ^ "Samantha Cameron to step down from full time job". BBC News. 13 May 2010. Retrieved 13 May 2010. 
  22. ^ "From Politics to Fashion - Prestige Magazine". Prestige Magazine. 2017-02-14. Retrieved 2017-02-17. 
  23. ^ "Fashion forward: SamCam ditches conservative trouser suits for striking skirt as she promotes British designers". Daily Mail. Retrieved 17 October 2014. 
  24. ^ "Who's that new Tatler girl? Unknowns make mark in style bible's best-dressed Top 10 – including girl who loves Harrods doughnuts". Daily mail. Retrieved 17 October 2014. 
  25. ^ "Samantha Cameron joins in game of boccia with Paralympic athletes". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 17 October 2014. 
  26. ^ a b Emma Barnett, Dress for Success: the charity quietly getting British women back into work, The Daily Telegraph, 18 October 2012
  27. ^ Conlan, Tara (11 December 2015). "Samantha Cameron and Ed Balls to mix it up in Great British Bake Off special". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 12 December 2015. 
  28. ^ "David Cameron: Taking more and more refugees not answer". BBC News. 
  29. ^ "Samantha Cameron shocked by Syrian children's stories in Lebanon". Save the Children UK. 
  30. ^ Walters, Simon (7 March 2010). "Mrs Cameron 'might have voted Labour': Source suggests Tory leader's wife voted for Blair..... and might vote for Brown". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 16 April 2010. 
  31. ^ "Iain Dale's Diary: SamCam Does NOT Vote Labour!". Iain Dale's Diary. 6 March 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2010. 
  32. ^ a b Sparrow, Andrew (7 March 2010). "Tories red-faced after 'Samantha for Labour' gaffe". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 16 April 2010. 
  33. ^ "In full: Cameron victory speech". BBC News. 6 December 2005. Retrieved 16 April 2010. 
  34. ^ Caroline Dewar (5 March 2012). "Who's who in the Chipping Norton set". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 6 May 2012. 
  35. ^ Lundy, Darryl (3 April 1981). "Person Page 6270". Retrieved 22 June 2015. [unreliable source]
  36. ^ "National Portrait Gallery – Person – Alice Devin (née Gundry), Lady Clifford". Retrieved 22 June 2015. 
  37. ^ "Biographical Sketch of John Murton Gundry". Access Genealogy. 11 March 2012. Retrieved 22 June 2015. [unreliable source]

External links[edit]

Honorary titles
Preceded by
Sarah Brown
Spouse of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
Succeeded by
Philip May