William Astor, 4th Viscount Astor

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The Right Honourable
The Viscount Astor
Official portrait of Viscount Astor.jpg
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for National Heritage
In office
20 July 1994 – 6 July 1995
Prime Minister John Major
Preceded by Iain Sproat
Succeeded by The Lord Inglewood
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Security
In office
16 September 1993 – 20 July 1994
Prime Minister John Major
Preceded by Ann Widdecombe
Succeeded by James Arbuthnot
Government Whip
In office
11 October 1990 – 16 September 1993
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
John Major
Preceded by The Lord Cavendish of Furness
Succeeded by The Lord MacKay of Ardbrecknish
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
24 July 1973
Hereditary Peerage
Preceded by William Astor, 3rd Viscount Astor
Personal details
Born William Waldorf Astor III
(1951-12-27) 27 December 1951 (age 66)
Political party Conservative
Annabel Jones (m. 1976)
Children 3
Parents William Astor, 3rd Viscount Astor
Sarah Norton
Relatives See Astor family
Alma mater Eton College
Occupation politician, businessman

William Waldorf Astor III, 4th Viscount Astor (born 27 December 1951) is an English businessman and politician who sits as a Conservative hereditary Lord Temporal in the House of Lords. He is a member of the Astor family known for its prominence in business, society, and politics in both the United States and the United Kingdom.


William Waldorf III is the son of William Astor, 3rd Viscount Astor (1907–1966) and Sarah Kathleen Elinor Norton (1920–2013). From his father's later marriages, he has three younger half-sisters: Emily (born 1956), Janet (born 1961), and Pauline (born 1964). From his mother's remarriage to Thomas Michael Baring, he has a younger half-brother named Edward Richard Philip Baring (born September 1962).[1] He was educated at Eton College.

Astor was a Lord-in-waiting (a House of Lords whip) from 1990 to 1993. He was then made a Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Social Security. In 1994, he moved to the Department of National Heritage where he served until leaving the government in 1995.[2]

He was a member of the Founding Council of the Rothermere American Institute at the University of Oxford.[3]

Viscount Astor is Chairman of Silvergate Media and director of Networkers Plc (since 2007) and trustee of Stanley Spencer Gallery in Cookham.

Marriage and children[edit]

Astor married Annabel Lucy Veronica Jones (born 1948), daughter of Timothy Angus Jones and Patricia David Pandora Clifford on 14 January 1976. They have three children:

  • Hon Flora Katherine Astor (born 7 June 1976)
  • Hon William Waldorf "Will" Astor IV (born 18 January 1979)
  • Hon James Jacob Astor (born 1981)

The heir to the viscountcy is his elder son, Will, who married model Lohralee Stutz, daughter of Serge Alain Stutz and Lerma Villas, at East Hendred, Oxfordshire on 5 September 2009. They have a son William Waldorf Astor V (born 4 May 2012) and a daughter Allegra Annabel Astor (born 14 August 2013).[4]

His wife Annabel's stepfather was his uncle Michael Langhorne Astor.

Viscountess Astor was previously married to Sir Reginald Sheffield, 8th Baronet by whom she is the mother of Samantha Cameron, wife of former Prime Minister David Cameron.



  1. ^ http://thepeerage.com/p7900.htm#i78996
  2. ^ thePeerage.com - Person Page 7535
  3. ^ "Founding Council | The Rothermere American Institute". Rothermere American Institute. Archived from the original on 17 November 2012. Retrieved 22 November 2012.
  4. ^ "Allegra Annabel Astor Birth Announcement". The Times. 21 August 2013.

External links[edit]

Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Waldorf Astor II
Viscount Astor