Tracy Somerset, Duchess of Beaufort

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Tracy Louise Somerset, Duchess of Beaufort (born 22 December 1958) is a British Duchess, environmental activist and former actress. She is widely known as Tracy Worcester, her name before 2017.

Life and work[edit]

Born in Kensington, Tracy Louise Ward is a daughter of the Hon. Peter Alistair Ward (a younger son of William Ward, 3rd Earl of Dudley and formerly chairman of the family business, Baggeridge Brick PLC) and his first wife, Clare Leonora Baring, the only child of the gentleman cricketer Giles Baring. She is the sister of British actress Rachel Ward and also has one brother and two half-brothers. Her great-grandfather, William Ward, 2nd Earl of Dudley, was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland in the early 20th century, and then Governor-General of Australia. He was the son of Georgina Ward, Countess of Dudley.[1]

Tracy Ward grew up on her father's estate at Cornwell, Oxfordshire. After gaining three 'A'-levels, she went to Paris as a model, and then to work at Christie's in London, and then worked in art galleries in New York. In her early 20s, she trained for an acting career at the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (ALRA) London and the London Drama School.[citation needed]

As an actress, she is best remembered for her role as Tessa Robinson in the television detective series C.A.T.S. Eyes (1986–1987). She also played the first Miss Scarlett in the television drama game show Cluedo (1990); and appeared in the Doctor Who serial Timelash (1985). Her theatre credits include: Our Day Out (Nottingham Playhouse) and Intimacy (Cafe Theatre).[citation needed]

On 13 June 1987, she married Henry Somerset, Marquess of Worcester, a farmer and chartered surveyor who is currently the 12th Duke of Beaufort. Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales attended the wedding. They have three children:

  • Robert, Marquess of Worcester (1989)
  • Lady Isabella Somerset (1991)
  • Lord Alexander Somerset (1995)


In 1989, Tracy Worcester began working with Friends of the Earth. Since then, she has been active in green politics as Associate Director of the International Society for Ecology and Culture, a trustee of The Gaia Foundation, the Trustee of The Schumacher Society and the Bath Environment Centre, on the Council of the UK's Soil Association, and a member of the International Forum on Globalisation. She was a member of the Referendum Party, opposed Britain's involvement in the European Union. She produced a documentary film called Pig Business, highlighting the environmental and health impact of intensive, industrialised pig farming mass-producing low quality pork.[citation needed]

She backed Julian Assange by pledging bail in December 2010: she lost the money in June 2012 when a judge ordered it to be forfeited, as Assange had sought to escape the jurisdiction of the English courts by entering the embassy of Ecuador.[2]

In 2013, she was signatory to a campaign for women to be able to inherit noble titles.[3]

Prior to the 2015 general election, she was one of several celebrities who endorsed the parliamentary candidacy of the Green Party's Caroline Lucas.[4]



  1. ^ Mosley, Charles, ed. (2003). Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knighthood (107 ed.). Burke's Peerage & Gentry. p. 1191. ISBN 0-9711966-2-1. 
  2. ^ Daily Mail, 4 September 2012. Retrieved 26 March 2014.
  3. ^ "Gender equality for peeresses". The Daily Telegraph. 
  4. ^ Elgot, Jessica (24 April 2015). "Celebrities sign statement of support for Caroline Lucas – but not the Greens". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 22 July 2015. 

External links[edit]