Winifred Cavendish-Bentinck, Duchess of Portland
The Duchess of Portland
Winifred Anna Dallas-Yorke by Philip de László, 1912
|Born||Winifred Anna Dallas-Yorke
7 September 1863
Murthly Castle, Perthshire
|Died||30 July 1954
Welbeck Abbey, Nottinghamshire
|Spouse(s)||William John Arthur James Cavendish-Bentinck, 6th Duke of Portland (1857-1943)|
Lady Victoria Alexandrina Violet Cavendish-Bentinck (1890–1994), William Arthur Henry Cavendish-Bentinck, 7th Duke of Portland (1893–1977)
|Parents||Thomas Yorke Dallas-Yorke (father)
Frances Graham (mother)
She served as a canopy bearer to HM Queen Alexandra at the 1902 coronation of King Edward VII, and was Mistress of the Robes from 1913 until Alexandra's death in 1925.
She married William John Arthur James Cavendish-Bentinck on 11 June 1889. They had three children:
- Lady Victoria Alexandrina Violet Cavendish-Bentinck (27 February 1890 – 8 May 1994); she married Captain Michael Erskine-Wemyss and had issue
- William Arthur Henry Cavendish-Bentinck, 7th Duke of Portland (1893–1977); he married Ivy Gordon-Lennox and had issue
- Lord Francis Morven Dallas Cavendish-Bentinck (27 July 1900 – 22 August 1950)
The Duchess of Portland was a passionate animal lover, who kept stables for old horses and ponies, as well as dogs needing homes. In 1891, she became the first (and longest serving) president of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and was vice-president of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. She was also president of the ladies committee of the RSPCA.
She was elected as the third President of the Nottinghamshire Beekeepers' Association in 1907.
In 1889, she persuaded the duke to use a large portion of his horseracing winnings to build almshouses at Welbeck, which he named "The Winnings." She cared greatly for the local miners and supported them by paying for medical treatments, and organising cooking and sewing classes for their daughters. She also sponsored a miner, with an interest in art, to study in London.
"In addition to the famous racing stables, where a number of the Duke of Portland's most celebrated horses (including "St. Simon") were to be seen, there is a group of substantially built almshouses, known as "The Winnings," which were erected by the Duke at the request of his wife out of the money won in seven races, viz., the Two Thousand Guineas in 1888 by "Ayrshire", the Derby and St. Leger in 1889 by "Donovan", the Oaks and St. Leger in 1890 by "Memoir", and the One Thousand Guineas in 1890 by "Semolina".
In honor of her support, the Nottinghamshire Miners' Welfare Association petitioned the king on her behalf; and in 1935 she was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) on his silver jubilee.
- Nicholas Hammond. "Bentinck, Winifred Anna Cavendish- [née Winifred Anna Dallas-Yorke], duchess of Portland (1863–1954)". Oxford of Dictionary National Biography. Retrieved 19 October 2012.
- "The Dowager Duchess of Portland". The Times. The Times Digital Archive. 31 July 1954. p. 8.
- Barbara T. Gates (15 February 1999). Kindred Nature: Victorian and Edwardian Women Embrace the Living World. University of Chicago Press. p. 115. ISBN 978-0-226-28443-9. Retrieved 19 October 2012.
- "The Summer Excursion". Nottingham History. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
- Penton, Keith. "Specialist selection". Christies.
- "Portland sapphire tiara". Order of Splendor.
- Biography of the Duchess, with links to online catalogues, from Manuscripts and Special Collections, The University of Nottingham
The Duchess of Buccleuch and Queensberry
|Mistress of the Robes to