Maurice Roche, 4th Baron Fermoy

Maurice Roche, 4th Baron Fermoy
Edmund Maurice Burke Roche, 4th Baron Fermoy
Born Edmund Maurice Burke Roche
15 May 1885(1885-05-15)
Chelsea, London
Died 8 July 1955(1955-07-08) (aged 70)
Nationality British
Education Harvard University
Title Baron Fermoy
Predecessor James Roche, 3rd Baron Fermoy
Successor Edmund Roche, 5th Baron Fermoy
Spouse Ruth Sylvia Gill
Children Mary Cynthia Roche (b.1934)
Frances Shand Kydd (1936-2004)
Edmund Roche, 5th Baron Fermoy (1939-1984)
Parents James Roche, 3rd Baron Fermoy
Frances Ellen Work
Relatives Cynthia Roche (sister)
Diana, Princess of Wales (granddaughter)

Edmund Maurice Burke Roche, 4th Baron Fermoy (15 May 1885 – 8 July 1955) was an Irish peer, British Conservative Party politician and the maternal grandfather of Diana, Princess of Wales.

Life and career

Roche was born in Chelsea, London,[1] the elder of twin sons of the Hon. James Roche (later Baron Fermoy) and his wife, Frances Ellen Work. He was educated at Harvard University, but returned to England on succeeding to his father's title in 1920. He rented Park House, Sandringham, Norfolk from the Royal Family and at the 1924 general election, he contested and won the local parliamentary constituency, King's Lynn, holding the seat until he stood down at the 1935 general election.[2][3] He was also elected the town's mayor in 1931.[4]

On 17 September 1931, Lord Fermoy married Ruth Sylvia Gill (the youngest daughter of Col. William Gill) at St. Devenick’s, Bieldside, Aberdeenshire[1] and they had three children:

Lord Fermoy joined the Royal Air Force in 1939 at the start of World War II but when the incumbent Member of Parliament (MP) for King’s Lynn was killed on active service in 1943, he resigned his commission and stood for re-election. He retired from politics when Parliament was dissolved for the 1945 general election.[2]

Lord Fermoy collapsed in a shop at King’s Lynn, Norfolk in June 1955 and died three weeks later.[2] He was succeeded by his only son.

His life was the subject of the book Lilac Days, by Gavan Naden and Maxine Riddington (Harpercollins (ISBN 0-00-719863-9) ), where it was revealed he had a 30 year affair with an American Edith Travis.


  1. ^ a b Williamson, D The Ancestry of Lady Diana Spencer In: Genealogist’s Magazine, 1981; vol. 20 (no. 6) p. 192-199 and vol. 20 (no. 8) p. 281-282
  2. ^ a b c The Times, Saturday, Jul 9, 1955; p. 8 col. D
  3. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983) [1969]. British parliamentary election results 1918–1949 (3rd edition ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X. 
  4. ^ The Borough Council of King's Lynn and West Norfolk

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
George Woodwark
Member of Parliament for King's Lynn
Succeeded by
Somerset Maxwell
Preceded by
Somerset Maxwell
Member of Parliament for King's Lynn
Succeeded by
Frederick Wise
Peerage of Ireland
Preceded by
James Roche
Baron Fermoy
Succeeded by
Edmund Roche

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