Lady Margaret Douglas-Home
Hon. Alexandra Margaret Elizabeth Spencer
4 July 1906
|Died||26 May 1996(aged 89)|
|Alma mater||Royal College of Music|
|Occupation||Musician, writer, arts promoter|
Hon. Henry Montagu Douglas-Home (m. 1931–1947)
|Parent(s)||Charles Spencer, 6th Earl Spencer|
Hon. Margaret Baring
|Relatives||Diana, Princess of Wales (grandniece)|
Lady Alexandra Margaret Elizabeth Douglas-Home (née Spencer, 4 July 1906 – 26 May 1996) was an English musician, writer, and arts promoter. She founded the Burnham Market Festival and served as its director for almost two decades.
Born into the aristocratic Spencer family in London in 1906, she was the sixth and youngest child of Charles Spencer, 6th Earl Spencer, and Hon. Margaret Baring (1868–1906), daughter of the first Lord Revelstoke, a banker. Her godmother was Queen Alexandra. Her youth was spent at Althorp and at Spencer House.
Lady Margaret was educated at home under a governess, although she spent some time at Northampton Secondary School for Girls attending events such as concerts at the Albert Hall. An accomplished pianist, she inherited musical talent from her mother and grandmother, who were violinists. After her father's death in 1922, Lady Margaret studied French and music in Paris. She then accompanied Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, to South Africa as her lady-in-waiting, before resuming her music studies in Vienna. She also studied at the Royal College of Music in London, where she later became a trustee.
Lady Margaret worked in the publications section of the National Gallery in 1941 and as a lady-in-waiting to Princess Alexandra in the 1950s. She also purchased and ran an antiques business in Burnham Market, Norfolk. In 1974, she founded Burnham Market Festival, which was originally a series of concerts, poetry readings, and theatrical productions. She continued as festival director until 1992. Her autobiography, A Spencer Childhood, was published in 1994.
In 1931, Lady Margaret married Hon. Henry Montagu Douglas-Home (1907–1980), second son of the Charles Douglas-Home, 13th Earl of Home. The marriage was dissolved in 1947. They had two sons, Robin (died 1968) and Charles (died 1985). Their daughter, Fiona, married first Gregory Martin, and second, the merchant banker Sir Ian James Fraser (1923–2003), former chairman of Lazard. Lady Margaret was the grandaunt of Diana, Princess of Wales, and a close friend of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. She died at Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk in 1996.
|Ancestors of Lady Margaret Douglas-Home|