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Biographical entry Henry, HRH Prince, Duke of Gloucester (1900 - 1974)

Hon FRCS 1943.

31 March 1900
10 June 1974
Member of the UK Royal Family


Henry William Frederick Albert, Prince of York and later Duke of Gloucester was born in York Cottage, Sandringham, on 31 March 1900, the fourth of six children and third of the sons of the Duke and Duchess of York, later King George V and Queen Mary. He was educated at Eton and Sandhurst and spent a year at Trinity College, Cambridge (1919-20).

In 1928 he was created Duke of Gloucester and began undertaking official engagements. He married Alice Christabel, the third daughter of John Charles Montagu-Douglas-Scott, seventh Duke of Buccleuch on 6 November 1935 and they had two sons Prince William and Prince Richard. The death of George V and the abdication of Edward VIII in 1936 left the Duke third in line to the throne and regent designate until Princess Elizabeth came of age in 1944.

During the second world war the Duke served as chief liaison officer between the English and French armies in Europe. In 1941 he was appointed second-in-command of the 20th Armoured Brigade and inspected troops all over the world. In 1945 he was appointed Governor-General of Australia.

Returning to England in 1947 the Duke undertook a strenuous round of duties and supported many institutions with considerably more than his name; prominent among which were those concerned with hospitals, youth and farming. In 1943 he was presented with the Honorary Fellowship of the College to add to his dazzling array of orders.

After a car accident in 1965 the Duke's health began to fail and in 1968 he suffered two severe strokes. He died at his home, Barnwell Manor, on 10 June 1974 and was succeeded by his younger son Prince Richard Alexander Walter George.

The Royal College of Surgeons of England