Albert Edward John Spencer, 7th Earl Spencer, was born 23 May 1892 in London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom to Charles Robert Spencer, 6th Earl Spencer (1857-1922) and Margaret Baring (1868-1906) and died 9 June 1975 Northampton, Northamptonshire, England, United Kingdom of unspecified causes. He married Cynthia Elinor Beatrix Hamilton (1897-1972) 26 February 1919 in St James's, Piccadilly, Greater London, England, United Kingdom.


Albert Edward John Spencer, 7th Earl Spencer (23 May 1892 – 9 June 1975), known formally as The Hon Albert Spencer until 1910 and from then until 1922 as Viscount Althorp, and less formally as "Jack" Spencer, was a British peer. He was the paternal grandfather of Diana, Princess of Wales.

He was born in London, the son of Charles Robert Spencer, 6th Earl Spencer and his wife, the former Margaret Baring, second daughter of Edward Baring, 1st Baron Revelstoke.[1] His godparents included King Edward VII.[2]

After his education at Harrow School and Trinity College, Cambridge[3], Spencer served in the First World War as a Captain in the First Life Guards[4], and was active in the local politics of Northamptonshire as a Conservative councillor. He opened his ancestral home, Althorp, to the public and was a well-known art connoisseur, being a trustee of the Wallace Collection and chairman of the Royal School of Needlework.[5] He was a Fellow of both the Society of Antiquaries of London and the Royal Society of Arts, and for eight years in the 1960s he was Chair of the Advisory Council of the Victoria and Albert Museum. Spencer was active in the Territorial Army for 43 years from 1924.[3] He was Lord Lieutenant of Northamptonshire from 1952 to 1967, and Chairman of the Governors at Wellingborough School from 1946 to 1972..

Spencer married Lady Cynthia Hamilton, second daughter of James Hamilton, 3rd Duke of Abercorn, in 1919 and had two children.

He died at St Matthews Nursing Home, Northampton after a short illness[6], and was succeeded as Earl by his son, John Spencer, 8th Earl Spencer, the father of Diana, Princess of Wales.

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Offspring of Albert Edward John Spencer, 7th Earl Spencer and Cynthia Elinor Beatrix Hamilton (1897-1972)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Anne Spencer (1920)
Edward John Spencer, 8th Earl Spencer (1924-1992) 24 January 1924 London, England, United Kingdom 29 March 1992 Humana Hospital, Wellington, London, England, United Kingdom Frances Ruth Burke Roche (1936-2004) Frances Ruth Burke Roche (1936-2004) Raine McCorquodale (1929)

Footnotes (including sources)

‡ General
  1. ^ Williamson, D The Ancestry of Lady Diana Spencer In: Genealogist’s Magazine, 1981; vol. 20 (no. 6) pp. 192–199 and vol. 20 (no. 8) pp. 281–282
  2. ^ Mosley, C (ed.) Burke’s Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition (Burke’s Peerage & Gentry (UK) Ltd., Stokesley, North Yorkshire), 2003; vol. 3 p. 3695
  3. ^ a b Who was Who, 1971–1980 (Adam & Charles Black, London, 1981) p. 746
  4. ^ Mosley, C (ed.) Burke’s Peerage & Baronetage, 106th edition (Burke’s Peerage, Crans, Switzerland), 1999; vol. 2 p. 2673
  5. ^ The Times, Thursday, 12 June 1975; p. 20 col. F
  6. ^ The Times, Tuesday, 10 June 1975; p. 30 col. B