Sir Mark Palmer, 5th Baronet

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Sir Mark Palmer

Born (1941-11-21) 21 November 1941 (age 79)
EducationEton College
OccupationLondon Boy, early modelling agency; New Age traveller
Known forPage of Honour to the Queen

Sir Charles Mark Palmer, 5th Baronet (born 21 November 1941) is a British aristocrat, who formed one of the first modelling agencies devoted to the male image and later adopted an alternative lifestyle, travelling around Britain in a horse-drawn caravan.

Early life[edit]

Mark Palmer is the son of Sir Anthony Palmer, 4th Baronet and Henriette, Lady Abel Smith. His godmother is Queen Elizabeth II.[1]

Palmer was educated at Eton College and spent a year at the University of Oxford.[2]

From 1956 to 1959 he was Page of Honour to Queen Elizabeth II.[3]


In 1966, Palmer and Alice Pollock founded the early male modelling agency English Boy in Chelsea, London, with Palmer as manager.[4][5] As Palmer said, "to change the image of British manhood and put the boy, as opposed to the girl, on the magazine cover in the future."[4] In 1967, the New York Times reported that Palmer's English Boy had 12 young men on its books, "they are lean in the Twiggy style and look as though they need a good night's sleep. They don't smile.", and that they often buy their clothes from Hung On You.[2] Other clients included Christine Keeler, who Palmer wanted to represent for films and television as well as modelling, but according to Keeler, "nothing developed".[6] Brian Jones and Anita Pallenberg were also on the agency's books, but no work resulted.[4]

By the end of the 1960s and into the 1970s, he was the leader of a wealthy band of New Age travellers who moved about in horse-drawn caravans and spent much time in the 1970s at Stargroves, the house and estate in East Woodhay, Hampshire, owned by Mick Jagger.[7]

In 1972, Palmer helped Marc Bolan's wife June with a wide-ranging search for a country house, and they purchased the Grade II listed Old Rectory at Weston-under-Penyard, near Ross-on-Wye, which Bolan owned until 1977.[1]

He made by hand the coffin for the 1999 funeral at London's Brompton Cemetery of the artists' model and memoirist Henrietta Moraes, who had spent time with Palmer in the early 1970s in his "cavalcade of horse-drawn caravans".[8]

Personal life[edit]

Palmer was married to the astrologer Catherine Tennant, who wrote a weekly column for the Daily Telegraph's magazine.[3][9]


Coat of arms of Sir Mark Palmer, 5th Baronet
Palmer (of Grinkle Park) Escutcheon.png
In front of a tilting spear erect Proper a wyvern Or resting the dexter foot on a crescent Argent.
Sable on a chevron between three crescents in chief and a lion passant in base Argent two tilting spears chevron-wise Proper.
Par Sit Fortuna Labori[10]


  1. ^ a b Jones, Lesley-Ann (2012). Ride a White Swan: The Lives and Death of Marc Bolan. London: Hodder & Stoughton. p. 258. ISBN 978-1-4447-5880-1.
  2. ^ a b "Hippies brighten British summer" by Dana Adams Schmidt in Rockwell, John (Ed.) (2014). The New York Times The Times of the Sixties: The Culture, Politics, and Personalities that Shaped the Decade. New York: Black Dog & Leventhal. pp. 166–167. ISBN 978-1-60376-366-0.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  3. ^ a b Miller, Compton (23 January 2006). "Inside Story: The big stars of astrology". The Independent. Archived from the original on 2 June 2008. Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  4. ^ a b c Salewicz, Chris. (2012). 27: Brian Jones. London: Quercus. p. 30. ISBN 978-1-78087-542-2.
  5. ^ Grunenberg, Christoph; Jonathan Harris (Eds.) (2005). Summer of Love: Psychedelic Art, Social Crisis and Counterculture in the 1960s. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. p. 119. ISBN 978-0-85323-929-1.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  6. ^ Keeler, Christine; with Douglas Thompson (2012). Secrets and Lies: Now Profumo is Dead, I Can Finally Reveal the Truth About the Most Shocking Scandal in British Politic. London: John Blake. p. 165. ISBN 978-1-85782-719-4.
  7. ^ Sandford, Christopher. (2012). The Rolling Stones: Fifty Years. London: Simon & Schuster. p. 189. ISBN 978-0-85720-104-1.
  8. ^ Scott, Caroline (22 January 1999). "'She wasn't equipped to be a mother'". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 4 September 2009. Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  9. ^ "Catherine Tennant". Retrieved 3 August 2014.
  10. ^ Burke's Peerage. 1956.

External links[edit]

Court offices
Preceded by
Hon. Charles Wilson
First Page of Honour
Succeeded by
Hon. Julian Hardinge
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Anthony Palmer
(of Grinkle Park and Newcastle-upon-Tyne)