"Harold Nicolson, Dulcie Vaughan-Targett, Oswald Mosley, Imogen Grenfell"

Sir Harold George Nicolson KCVO CMG (1886-1968) was an aristocrat who took on many roles throughout his lifetime – namely author, diarist, politican and diplomat. He was born in Tehran, Persia (now Iran) and spent most of his young life following his father to a variety of diplomatic posts (his father was the British charge d'affaires).

Tehran at night
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeTehran at night - Credit: Trix5000


Nicolson was a student of Balliol College, Oxford and later went into the diplomatic service, after which, he married Vita Sackville-West in 1913 (daughter of Lord Sackville and herself, a poet, novelist, and gardener).

The Nicolson’s mingled with fellow writers and aristocrats, including Virginia Woolf, whom Vita was in love with. Indeed, both she and her husband, despite their love for each other, both also loved members of the same sex. They had two sons, one of which wrote a book about his parents’ marriage (‘Portrait of a Marriage’).

Nicolson’s political life saw him become a member of Parliament for the National Labour Party for West Leicester from 1935 to 1945. He was too much of an aristocrat however to truly sympathise with his working class constituents and did not maintain his position in later elections.

British politician Sir Oswald Ernald Mosley, 6th Baronet, of Ancoats, (1896-1980) founded the British Union of Fascists (BUF). He entered Parliament at the tender age of 21 as a Conservative MP, but quickly became an Independent MP.

After dalliances with the Labour Party, Mosley founded the New Party around 1931, which became increasiingly fascist in its views. Deciding to unite the fascist movement in 1932, Mosley formed the BUF.

Imogen Grenfell married Henry Rainald Gage, 6th Viscount Gage, KCVO, Viscount Gage of Firle Place during much of the 20th century.