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Young, Edward Hilton, 1879-1960 (1st Baron Kennet and politician)



  • Existence: 1879-1960

Edward Hilton Young was the third son of Sir George Young, 3rd Bt. Of Formosa Place, Berkshire, and Alice Eacy, daughter of Dr. Evory Kennedy of Dublin, and widow of Sir Alexander Lawrence. Hilton Young went to preparatory school at Wymondley House, Stevenage, and was subsequently educated at Northaw, Marlborough College and Eton College. After leaving Eton he studied chemistry for two terms under Sir William Ramsay at University College, London, before going to Trinity College, Cambridge, where he read Natural Sciences. At Trinity, Hilton Young was president of the Union and Editor of the Cambridge Review. Among his friends at Trinity College was G.M. Trevelyan, E.M Forster and others of the 'Bloomsbury Set'. In 1904 Hilton Young was called to the Bar and practised in the King's Bench Division and on the Oxford Circuit, but owing to illness he relinquished his legal career and took up politics and journalism. He was assistant editor of The Economist, and financial editor of The Morning Post (1910-14). In 1910 he unsuccessfully contested the seat of East Worcester and Preston. During the war, Hilton Young served in the Royal Navy and produced 'The Fleet News'. In 1918 he was severely wounded and lost his right arm whilst serving on HMS Vindictive at Zeebrugge. He then volunteered for service in Russia where he was in command of an armoured train on the Vologda railway, for this he was appointed to the D.S.O. In the Spring of 1919 he returned to England and was demobilized. In 1920 he published a book of war memoirs 'By Sea and Land'. Hilton Young was M.P. for Norwich 1915-23, and 1924-29; Financial Secretary to the Treasury 1921-22; British Representative at the Hague Conference on International Finance 1922; and went on financial missions for the British Government to India (1920), Poland (1924), and Iraq (1925 & 1930). In 1926 he left the Liberal Party and joined the Conservatives, became MP for Sevenoaks in Kent in 1929 and was Secretary for Overseas Trade in the National Government and Minister of Health from 1931 until he was created a peer in 1935, taking the title Lord Kennet of the Dene, and retiring from politics. After 1935 Lord Kennet's working life was spent mainly in the City, where he was chairman and director of a wide range of institutions, and president of many trade and educational institutions. From 1939-59 he chaired the Capital Issues Committee, which administered the control of investment throughout the economy. His personal interests included poetry, collecting old books, ornithology and sailing. He continued to write on many subjects and also made radio broadcasts.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:


Kennet Papers

Reference Code: GBR/0012/MS Kennet
Scope and Contents A collection comprising the papers of the Rt.Hon. Edward Hilton Young (1879-1960), 1st Lord Kennet of the Dene, the politician and writer, and those of his wife Kathleen (1878-1947), a noted sculptor and the widow of Captain Robert Falcon Scott, the explorer.Lord Kennet's papers contain school letters and diaries, a series of correspondence with G.M Trevelyan and E.M. Forster, letters and diaries from his war years, political papers and letters including correspondence with Neville...
Dates: 1892-1960
Conditions Governing Access: Restricted. Permission must be sought before consulting anything from this collection.

The UK Archival Thesaurus has been integrated with our catalogue, thanks to Kings College London and the AIM25 project for their support with this.