At the turn of the previous century, Ormeley Lodge was the home of the 4th Baron Sudeley and his wife, Ada Maria Katherine Tollemache, the parents of Felix Hanbury Tracy. Indeed, Felix appears as a ‘visitor,’ with his mother at that address on the night of the 1911 census, in which he is described as ‘Land Agent’.
The present Lord Sudeley, in a review of a book on Ham House (for details, see below), wrote with some feeling of the role played by Lloyds Bank, which, although “low down on the list of creditors” filed a petition for bankruptcy against Lord Sudeley, which made it impossible for him to salvage his financial situation. Because Lady Sudeley’s Tollemache inheritance was greatly reduced by her having guaranteed her husband’s loan from the bank, their relationship suffered an irreversible blow. Lord Sudeley notes, “They retired to Ormeley on the Ham Estate, where every feeling of her for him was dead except pity and stiff hatred.” At the time that Lord Sudeley’s financial difficulties came to a head, Felix was about eleven years old, the youngest of the couple’s children and the most likely of them to have felt the pain of their marital discord.
As we have seen, the Sudeleys were a driving force in the decisions made re the nature of Ham’s tribute to its war dead.
Lady Sudeley was a Tollemache by birth and it is the family connection with Ham House, which explains Felix’s name appearing also on the Petersham Memorial, itself barely a stone’s throw from Reston Lodge, to which the Sudeleys moved in September of 1922.
How about this for shades of unrelated Goldsmiths!
Felix’s mother-in-law was a Gouldsmith (sic) while the current owner of Ormeley Lodge is Lady Annabel Goldsmith, mother of Zac Goldsmith, the former MP for Richmond Park, a constituency which includes both Ham and Petersham. The mother-in-law of the current Duke of Cambridge was also born a Goldsmith.
‘Decision as to Tribute to the Gallant Dead’, Surrey Comet, 6 January 1917.
Anstruther, E.I.H., ‘The Gossip Notes of Ada Tollemache, Lady Sudeley’, http://www.zipworld.com.au/~lnbdds/home/adasudeley.htm, accessed.
The review by the present Baron Sudeley of Christopher Rowell’s book, Ham House 400 Years of Collecting and Patronage, appeared in the Genealogists’ Magazine, Volume 31 No 7, September 2014, p.277–8.