2016/12/10 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 10

Note: all times are in GMT + 1 (Netherlands)

e2a1There is a time to say “goodbey”. And that day was there.  After all, Mary was released from the eye shield, and dripping her eye she could do herself.

  • 09.00am alarm on my phone; getting downstairs to make the groundfllor look daylight friendly, and making preparations for the last breakfast on English soil;
  • 10.00am going upstairs to wake Mary and drip her eye. her Kellogs were waiting downstairs;
  • Mary had insisted to do a second laundry for me, so packing was easy as nearly everything was clean;
  • Computer, cables, plugs, converters, toilet articles  and a lot of Xmas cards to be packed in the large computer case (cabin luggage;
  • 13.55pm Private hired car is there, 2 hours prior to departure of flight BE1533


At 15.25pm sharp embarkation starts;

16.00pm airborne.


16.34pm halfway over the English Channel;


Arrival estimated at 17:00pm + 15 minutes of taxing to the gate (H-section).

17.02pm touch-down at Amsterdam.

The first direct train to Nimwegen was at 18.01pm from Schiphol But due to works on the railnet lasting all the weekend till Monday 06.00am the train would go to Arnheim. From there by fast bus transfer to Nijmegen CS, where Pierre would be waiting.




2016/12/09 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 9

Mary is so kind to prevent me going home with a filled laundry bag. So, she did last Monday a wash and this morning a second batch went in the fabulous wash&dry machine.

At 12.30PM we had a lunch appointment with Kay Cairns, a lady whom we met at the dinner with Joan. Kay -and Joan- live both very near Mary’s former house, “The Old Brewery” at Queens Square.


Kay Cairns has an amazing garden behind her Georgian house, fitted for al least a family of 6 🙂






2016/12/08 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 8



At 8AM I went over to Mary to remove the eye shield, drip her eye; all because of an early appointment at 9AM at the hairdresser and some village errands. After the ‘medical’ duties I went back to bed, because after a week of taking care I was rather exhausted.


A  fresh home-made courgette soup was served at 1.30PM on the bed, with Somerset cream , portwine and cheddar cheese.


There was time till 5PM as Mary was giving a farewell dinner for me in Taunton with Nick and Sarah Evelyn.














(Nick / Mary / Sarah)



2016/12/07 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 7

Deadline excursions D1702.









Date: From Tuesday, 6th December to 2016 Saturday, 12th December. Time: 7:45pm nightly and Saturday matinee at 2:00pm. Room: Main Hall’. Dick Whittington will be coming to North Curry Village Hall. The show is directed by Greg Phillips, who some of you may know from panto and farce at Somerton and Stoke St Gregory.

Tickets are £8 adults and £5 for under 12’s, available from Stoke St Gregory Village Stores, North Curry Post Office or from Greg on   01458 251773.

Dick Whittington and his Cat

A long time ago there was once a poor boy called Dick Whittington who had no Mummy and Daddy to look after him so he was often very hungry.  He lived in a little village in the country. He’d often heard stories about a far away place called London where everybody was rich and the streets were paved with gold. Dick Whittington was determined that he would go there and dig up enough gold from the streets to make his fortune.  One day he met a friendly waggoner who was going to London who said he would give him a lift there, so off they went.  When they reached the big city Dick couldn’t believe his eyes, he could see horses, carriages, hundreds of people, great tall buildings, lots of mud, but nowhere could he see any gold.  What a disappointment, how was he going to make his fortune? How was he even going to buy food? After a few days he was so hungry that he collapsed in a ragged heap on the doorstep of a rich merchant’s house.  Out of the house came a cook: “Be off with you” she shouted “you dirty ragamuffin” and she tried to sweep him off the step with a broom. At that moment the merchant arrived back at his house and, being a kindly man, took pity on poor Dick. “Carry him into the house” he ordered his groom. When he was fed and rested, Dick was given a job working in the kitchen.  He was very grateful to the Merchant but, alas, the cook was always very bad tempered and, when no one was looking, used to beat and pinch him. The other thing that made Dick sad was that he had to sleep in a tiny room at the very top of the house and it was full of rats and mice that crawled all over his face and tried to bite his nose. He was so desperate that he saved up all his pennies and bought a cat.  The cat was a very special cat, she was the best cat in all of London at catching mice and rats.  After a few weeks Dick’s life was much easier because of his clever cat who had eaten all the rats and mice and he was able to sleep in peace. Not long after, Dick heard the merchant asking everyone in the house if they wanted to send anything on board his ship they thought they could sell.  The ship was going on a long voyage to the other side of the world and the captain would sell everything on the ship so they could all make some money.  Poor Dick, what could he sell? Suddenly, a thought came to him: “Please sir, will you take my cat?” Everyone burst out laughing, but the merchant smiled and said: “Yes Dick, I will, and all the money from her sale will go to you”. After the merchant had left from the city Dick was on his own again with the mice and rats crawling over him by night and the cook being even nastier in the day because there was no-one to stop her.  Dick decided to run away.As he walked away the bells of all the churches rang out and seemed to say:

“Turn again Dick Whittington.  Three times Lord Mayor of London”

“Goodness, gracious, gosh” thought Dick astonished.  “If I’m going to be Lord Mayor I’d better stay.  I’ll put up with cook and the scurrying mice and rats, and when I’m mayor I’ll show her!” So back he went.  Across the other side of the world, the merchant and his ship had arrived at their destination.  The people were so pleased to see them and were so welcoming that the merchant decided to send some presents to their king and queen.  The king and queen were so delighted that they invited them all to a feast.  But, believe it or not, as soon as the food was brought in hundreds of rats appeared as if by magic and gobbled it all up before they had a chance to eat. “Oh dear” said the king “this is always happening – I never get a chance to eat my apple pie.  What can I do?” “I have an idea” said the merchant “I have a very special cat which has travelled with me all the way from London, and she will gobble up your rats faster than they gobbled up your feast.” Sure enough, to the king and queen’s joy, the next time a feast was prepared and the rats appeared, the cat pounced and killed all the rats as quick as lightening. The king and queen danced for joy and gave the merchant a ship full of gold in return for the very special cat. When the ship returned to London Dick was overwhelmed with the amount of gold the merchant gave him for his cat.  Over the years he used his money so wisely, and did so much good for all the people around him and who worked for him, that he was elected Lord Mayor of the City of London three times.  But he never forgot his kind friend the merchant, who had been so honest in giving him all the money that the cat had earned and kept nothing for himself. When Dick grew up he fell in love with Alice, the merchant’s beautiful daughter, and married her.  They lived happily ever after as people do in stories.

“Turn again Dick Whittington. Three times Lord Mayor of London”. They were right you see.


2We have a great range of facilities to accommodate all kinds of events; from parties and receptions to committee meetings, exercise classes and charity events.

Set in the heart of the village, we have ample parking, convenient access for those with disabilities or limited mobility and provide a flexible and friendly service.




North Curry Village Hall, December 7, 7:45PM

2016/12/06 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 6

British Telecom


During the weekends BT assigns to a village like North Curry (1,600 inhabitants) only a certain amount of data traffic. So the posts of December 4 and 5 were uploaded on Monday 6. But then 3 days of work on the network were announced. Yesterday (Dec 6) totally nothing and today (Dec 7) it started up at noon. Luckily I can manipulate the date and time of the posts, but dpoing it in retrospective is a bit complicated 😦 😦 😦

2016/12/05 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 5

a2Because of the bruised toe, which prevents me to walk normally AND to wear socks on my left leg, Mary and I decided to cancel the London trip. The todays program includes a lunch with Sophy, Mary’s second daughter, and a supper at Joan’s, a lady here from North Curry, who Pierre and I met last September. living opposite the post a3office / grocery store and close to the “Old Brewery”.

And as it is today December 5th, Santa Claus passed by and put a CD in my shoe: “The Armed Man, a mass for peace” composed by Karl Jenkins. Mary assures me that I will love it.

Mary with her daughter Sophy McIntosh in Mary’s Kingdom called AGA,  [December 05, 2016 / 5th nursing day].


We had a jolly nice lunch with Mary’s second daughter. I have met last September Alice & Jonathan, today Sophy, so there is left Beetle Belinda. Sophy wanted a good picture of Belinda’s christening on January 1, 1971:












2016/12/04 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 4

Patient & Nurse in distress

201612041208bruised-toeRegarding the Nurse: in the night from Friday to Saturday, at 04:20AM I rolled over to the “wrong” side of the bed and landed with a twisted leg on the floor. You feel rather desorientated in a “strange” bedroom, searching for the lightswitch etc. And I feared that Mary should have heard the noise of the fall, me finding my way in the room, and last but not least an urgent escape to the bathroom. However, when Mary and I talked over the plans for today (yesterday evening after dinner and an extra bottle of wine), a visit to St Peter & Paul’s chuch was proposed, but I should be dressed smartly, as a lot of people would like to meet me 🙂 🙂 🙂 But this only depending on the toe’s situation. And that was not so well this morning. At eight o’clock I removed the shield, applied vasaline on her forehead and drupped Mary’s eyes. She did not feel well, and wanted a morning in bed. However, I prepared breakfast as I am very clever in her AGA-domain:

201612041217marys-kitchen201612041218lelies-echteYou can see that the kitchen is well looked after. All clean and organised by me. I know perfectly my way in the numerous drawers and closets. And I try to teach Mary to use the dishwasher efficiently. That is hard. An easy Sunday, with a luncheon of cheese and portwine. Our day program is: 2PM Mary’s first lesson in dropping her eyes, as I will be in London Tuesday December 6;  Mary will look a film here downstairs and not in her bed “to give me company“, as she says; at 6PM an other try for Mary to drop; then there is the dancing contest (results) and Planet Earth. Dinner will be lamb and I shall do the final drops and placing the shield.

The lilies are in the kitchen and amazingly fresh looking.






  • were on the boat (January – May 2016),
  • when I was (with Pierre) in Somerset (September 2016),
  • when Mary stayed in Nijmegen (October 2016) and
  • when I function as male nurse AND very severe advisor in very different ways 10 days in North Curry (December 2016)
  • future cruise to Spain and France May/June 2017,

wilson1_161699cI must honestly say that I met a very nice woman at dinner (2nd seating, Glentanar Restaurant)  at my right side of the “singles table” January 8th, 2016. She tried to involve me in the conversations between the 7 English singles, but we had our private chats then already. I told her that I had a male partner, so that was a hint towards her. About her “noble” life we started later, at January 11th, at High Tea in the Observatory (upon my invitation, because I already booked for it prior to depature in the lounge at Southampton. A bookmark fell out her book, which she was reading while 03waiting for me. It was a stunning portrait of Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson. That was the start of an interesting friendship, that lasts ever since.  Although she is very picky about the content of my blog posting. Posting about her/her family are always sent in draft for “North Curry – approvement”. And she thinks that I pay too much attention to Prince Harry of Wales. But… he is a very attractive nice young man, and not only for women. I am sorry that he, at the age of 32 years, is far from free to choose a suitable partner.



2It’s still pretty cold out there in Somerset today (Sunday, December 4), with temperatures around 6 degrees C and unlikely to rise by much – but the good news is we’re in for quite a bit of sun. It will be back down to about 1 degree C overnight, but the temperature is going to creep up through the week, peaking at around 13 degrees C by Friday. The down side is we can expect some rain later in the week from Thursday onwards.

2016/12/03 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 3

A great Sunrise over North Curry, despite the graveyard just in front of Lady Mary’s house; at the left side: the Baptist Church.




  • For Mary: The Daily Mail with the TV programs
  • A Somerset Calendar
  • A North Curry Calendar
  • A set of fox Christmas cards (after all she is a Stewart-Wilson FOX)
  • A set of Countryside Alliance cards
  • Stamps (5) for Europe


After a brisk walk in the cold Somerset air our programs went astray.

I am working on a new Byzantine Cherubine hymn, Mary watches the dancing contest on TV.

Nevertheless: a glass of port wine goes well down the gutter, with some cheese 🙂

2016/12/02 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 2

As I reside in the U.K., I am confined to bacon and eggs in the morning 🙂 which I LOVE!


Then up to local news in the Somerset County Gazette

But of course my first task is being a nurse. And the surgeon from the Nuffield hospital in Taunton would give a phonecall how things were going with the patient. So the medical part was done in time. Then there was some shopping to do: eggs, milk (2 liter can), 2 kinds of juices together for (only) £4,91. I wanted to buy some buttermilk too, but I knew only the Dutch equivalent. And Mary tells me, that it is only available in supermakets. In North Curry we have a cosy grocery store with a post office at the side.


And she is so content with it 🙂. As a screen saver I installed a by Mary herself embroidered fox. After all she is a Fox by her maiden name, and her line goes MILES further in history than the STEWART-WILSON branch of the couple Blair – Mary 🙂🙂🙂







2016/12/01 – Nursing Lady Helen Mary, day 1

The first day was a long one, with all kind of obstacles, but with a happy end. (The timeline is all in GMT):

201612011059nijmegen_intercity-schiphol09:58am – Departure train Nijmegen CS to Schiphol Airport (direct)

11:27am – Arrival Schiphol Airport

11:45am – Departures 3: Checking in was not possible as the airport of Exeter was closed due to heavy fog, and there are no instrument landing systems at the airport. Official boarding time was 12:10pm and  the departure time was 12:40pm.


All passengers booked over to Southampton flight, delay about 3,5 hours at Schiphol Airport plus a 1,5 hours bus transfer Southampton – Exeter Airport.







04:05pm  – Scheduled departure time from Schiphol


04:30pm  – Airborn

05:30pm – Arrival Southampton Airport. On the original  Exeter flight were only 29 passengers; however the transit from Southampton to Exeter was badly managed: 3 (small) touring cars needed!!!


06:15pm – Departure by bus all along the “Coastway” to Exeter, which took 2h45m.

09:00pm – Arrival at Exeter, where Derek Corkill, the driver who had collected Mary from Nuffield Hospital in Taunton, waited for me.

09:50pm – Arrival at Quince, North Curry.


A very happy Mary, still 2 hours to go on her 77th birthday! That was like old times on the cruise, to kill a bottle of Lanson Black. But as her eye shield was not very well applied in the hospital I had to fix that first. Then we had a happy 2 hours for the remaining celebrations and lay out Nurse Luke’s schedules for the remaining days.

The picture is from the day after the night before, I must honestly say. The glasses had to be retrieved from the dishwasher, and the (empty) bottle was already at the bin.




2016/11/28 – Lady Helen Mary & Sophy & Harry

Lady Mary Stewart-Wilson attended with her daughter Sophy McIntosh and grandson Harry McIntosh a school advent service in the Abbey of Sherborne, Dorset. Before the service they had  supper 🙂



2016/11/26 – Somerset will be bright with chilly winds


SOMERSET will be bright today but cold winds will blow throughout the day. Temperatures will rise to a maximum of nine degrees Celsius around midday dropping to five degrees Celsius later this evening. There should be clear skies with no rain. NORTH CURRY at 09:06 AM: Weather: 5 ° C Wind NE 11 km / h, 88% humidity.

2016/11/22 – Somerset: Heavy rain continues to cause chaos on Somerset’s roads and trains

a1 FLOODING continues to be an issue in Somerset with some problems on the roads remaining from overnight and trains being suspended. Trains have been suspended between Taunton and Exeter St Davids due to flooding. Cross Country has said that there will be no trains between Tiverton and Exeter for the rest of today because of the damage caused during the storm. Tickets are being accepted other train services and bus services. Schools in Somerset are all reported to be open this morning but we’ll let you know if this changes. Meanwhile Taunton Town FC has called off the match tonight against Wimborne as the pitch is waterlogged. Somerset County Council has also closed the floodgates at New Road in West Lyng because of the water. Roads still affected by flooding at noon include:

Taunton Deane

  • A38 Wellington Relief Road – flooding between Swains Lane and Farthings Pit (road closed to through traffic between Chelston roundabout and Perry Elm roundabout)
  • A38 Blackbird Bends, Chelston, West Buckland – flooding, passible with care
  • A358 Seven Ash, west Bagborough – road clear
  • Nynehead Road, Chelston – flooding by River Tone, road closed
  • Oake Road, Bradford-on-Tone – flooding by River Tone, road closed
  • Ruishton to Creech St Michael (Cheats Corner) – flooding by River Tone, road closed
  • New Road at West Lyng (near junction with A361) – flood gates closed

a2After yesterday’s heavy rain lead to flooding across Somerset, the forecast for today is mainly cloudy but with some showers expected. The tempe-rature will not get above eight degrees centigrade and there will be some strong winds during the day, particularly along the coasts. The showers should ease into the afternoon, slowly turning drier overnight and could even turn foggy for some by dawn. Parts of Somerset are flooded after another night of heavy rainfall. The Environment Agency said that more than 50mm of rain fell in some catchments over thr weekend. In the last 12 hours another 40mm has fallen over the Tone catchment. Heavy rain is forecast until tomorrow morning, which may result in the spillways running. Pumps are operating at all of the pumping stations when enough water is available to pump. One of the four pumps at Northmoor was damaged yesterday because of a power failure and is being repaired. The remaining three pumps are more than capable to cope with the current situation. The Monksleaze Clyce was opened yesterday to allow water to flow through the River Sowy. This kept the Rivers Parrett and Tone at a level to allow pumping in both Currymoor and Northmoor. Some schools across Somerset have also closed due to the floods. Dulverton All Saints CofE VC Infants School, Little Elms Nursery and Dulverton Junior School will be closed this afternoon. Hambridge Primary School and Stawley Primary School also closed because of flooding earlier this afternoon. This is due to deteriorating weather conditions in the Dulverton area where surrounding roads have become Somerset County Gazette: flooded. The school hopes to re-open tomorrow. North Newton Community Primary is closed, as there is no access to WCs due to flooding.  There’s also no heating and no electrics as water is affecting some lights. Thurlbear School near Taunton has told parents that due to flooding on roads and driving conditions, parents can pick their children up early however the school will be open. Neroche Primary School near Ilminster is also allowing parents to pick up  children from as early from 1pm as two out of three roads into the village are flooded. Early pick up is for safety reasons to ensure safe daylight travel. There’s a lot of surface water on the A358 in both directions between Taunton and Southfields Roundabout in Donyatt.

2016/11/16 – Somerset Levels

A GROUP of residents are fighting against a proposed development that will ‘destroy the ancient village’ of North Curry. A planning application for five new houses at ‘The Paddock’ have been submitted to Taunton Deane Borough Council by Higdon Homes. The development is pinpointed in Manor Lane, just yards from a historic farmhouse, with a large part of a wooded footpath being removed and the lane entrance being widened. Many home owners in North Curry are less than impressed with the plans, and with the target decision date of February 11 looming, are keen to express their views. c1Sarah Franks, who lives close by, said: “There are so many people in the village who fear for the ruination of an area which is beautiful, special and historic. “It is not part of the recognised areas for development in North Curry and, already, there is a very high density of new development. “It is clearly a garden grabbing scheme and the impact on the grade one listed farmhouse would be irreversibly detrimental, and the landscape, with the loss of old footpaths and old hedgerows, would be urbanised and lost forever.” Fellow resident, Kim Varley, said: “I am against the greed involved in this constant sacrificing of pockets of land to developers. “There is no social housing involved in this particular event. It is only about lining pockets and at what cost? “An ancient protected hedgerow and footpath are to be destroyed and another green corridor removed, with extra cars in an already overloaded village.” Jim Barlow, of North Curry, believes the new development will ‘change the character of the village.’ He said: ” I am one of the many who have raised objections to the proposed Manor Lane developments. “It will change the character of the village. “Manor Farm is one of the oldest and loveliest houses in the village- this will be spoiled by the addition of five bog standard new houses.” The cottage on the corner to where the development will be, Jarveys Cottage, was recently bought. c2The front wall was demolished and rebuilt further back from the road, with the cottage then going back up for sale. Kate Mears said: “Even though there is no apparent link between the purchaser of Jarveys Cottage with the owner and developer for The Paddock application, questions could be asked why Jarveys Cottage was bought, its garden raised and made smaller, to be put back on the market, with the access to Manor Lane opened up. “Local people have to fight to retain the heritage against development that will destroy the ancient village.” A spokesperson from Higdon Homes said: “We are proposing a high quality small scale development making best use of unusable agricultural land within the village boundary. “Our scheme proposes five family homes with gardens and garages accessed from Manor Lane. “Whilst we are aware of concerns raised by local residents, we are working with the planning authority and the relevant statutory consultees to ensure the scheme proposed is suitable and will meet the strict policy constraints applied. “The scheme will benefit all local residents as it will create improvements to the highways access at Manor Lane junction and improve the surfacing and safety of the Public Footpaths adjacent to the site. “We welcome comments and would reassure that we review all comments and wherever possible seek to meet any realistic concerns raised.”

2016/11/13 – When you google “Alice Stewart-Wilson” you get the following text from the Tatler:

Jonathan Young and Alice Stewart-Wilson’s wedding, November 10th, 1985

Everyone tucked into ice-cream cones in celebration of the marriage of Jonathan Young (1) to Alice Stewart-Wilson (2). Earlier, the wedding had taken place in the tiny Holy Cross Church (3), just a few yards from the bride’s grandmother’s house, and close enough to a fridge-full of cornets should have been needed in emergency. Afterwards, there was dancing to a steel band, and then came those cornets. 

birds(1), (2)

Pierre and I met Jonathan and Alice on our last Sunday in North Curry, when Lady Mary Stewart-Wilson had invited us all for a farewell luncheon in the Birds in Hand Pub/Restaurant.

201608181830Somerset_Thorn Falcon (3) On our first stroll in Somerset, we visited also the Holy Cross Church at Thorn Falcon.

The Tatler provides several pictures which ask for more “background information” from the Stewart-Wilson side,  as there appear several people that Lady Mary never spoke of… 😦

2ralph-stewart-wilsonRALPH STEWART-WILSON

7maria-stewart-wilsonMARIA STEWART-WILSON

3rupert-trowerRUPERT TROWER

Then there are 2 well known pictures:


Front, right: the lucky couple Jonathan and Alice Young.


Right: Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson with (left) her youngest daughter Belinda. When you compare these last 2 pictures, and you observe Lady Mary’s hat, you can guess, that on the upper picture, last row, third from left, you see the same hat again 🙂 . In that case I presume that Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson is the man in the grey suit.

2016/10/11 – Lady Helen Mary visiting the Netherlands – day 5



No luck on computer at home to print a boarding pass; no luck on the self service machines at Schiphol to print a boarding pass; the attendant at the check-in counter said:


2016/10/10 – Lady Helen Mary visiting the Netherlands – day 4

201610100913trainLady Mary has put the picture that I took when she had a hot chocolate at Pinot, as profile picture on Facebook. Comments stream in every minute, even in the train 🙂 60 Likes!!!


Trip over the harbour and through the canals

From the Central Railway Station to the Rijksmuseum: it is a hazardous tour through a famous shopping area. And although Lady Mary’s Visa card was in Nijmegen, she still carried enough cash Euro’s 😦 😦 😦

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam















2016/10/09 – Lady Helen Mary visiting the Netherlands – day 3

Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterloo

Paintings collection, mainly Vincent van Gogh

Etchings collection, mainly Vincent van Gogh

Sculpture garden

Kröller Müller museum / misc.



Upon Lady Mary’s invitation we had a cosy dinner in restaurant “De Stadstuyn”, conveniently about 20 minutes walk from our residence.

2016/10/08 – Lady Helen Mary visiting the Netherlands – day 2

At Bram Verkleij, our cheese supplier.


A start at the market place in front of Marieken van Nimwegen. Mary likes the enormous cheeses, the fruits and the smell of fresh baked bread 🙂




Visiting a church makes you thirsty; so, at Café Pinot, a hot chocolate with whipped cream.


COMMENT OF LADY MARY STEWART-WILSON HERSELF: “I used this picture to update my Facebook profile. People seem to like it, because I got more than 60 likes!!! 🙂🙂🙂 “





Coffee, a nap and then changing for the Byzantine service. Pierre and Mary listened to Mahler’s Song of the Earth.


2016/10/07 – Lady Helen Mary visiting the Netherlands – day 1

Mary’s flight BE1533 was due to leave EXT. But -having parked her car in the long stay area- she had time to have a breakfast at the airport. After all, it was -for her- an early rise: 06:45 am 😦


At 12:14 PM the monitors indicated, that the plane would arrive 16 minutes before scheduled time… 🙂







And how happy they were to meet each other again, and in such a short time; Mary arrived at terminal 1, but she had to wait a considerable time for her (ample) luggage, which came as last piece off the belt.








2016/09/28 – Lady Helen Mary


Your evening starts off

October 9, 2016 at 07:30 PM at


A cozy dinner for two, or a delicious a la carte dinner with a (large) group
The location; in the center of Nijmegen
Surprising dishes adapted to the season, plenty of choice for vegetarians
The large peaceful terrace
Good accessibility by train, bus and car, parking around the corner at a low rate


Almost every day we welcome foreign guests. Many companies come to us because we have an English menu.


This dinner party is offered to us by Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson as a gesture of gratefulness for her (first) stay in the Netherlands from October 7 till October 11 at our home.


2016/09/27 – Lady Helen Mary

One of the most outstanding National Parks in the Netherlands is “De Hoge Veluwe”, where is also the Kröller Müller museum. We will be there with Lady Stewart-Wilson October 9 next.



2016/09/21 – Before “Norma” at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, there is a reunion of the famous “table of 8”.


2016/09/14 – Perhaps for Lady Mary and her daughter Alice as a training for the W1711: an overnight Rotterdam-Hull, a day in Hull/York, and an overnight Hull-Rotterdam: € 49 (£ 41.70) per person, in an inside twin cabin/twin use. Pierre and I did it, and one day is too short!!! 🙂 😦 🙂


Library filer dated 20/4/2004 of York Minster, where controversial entry charges have boosted the coffers by almost £400,000 since their introduction last summer. Staff at the largest Gothic cathedral in Northern Europe said the introduction of the fees helped to reduce last year's deficit of £612,000 to £220,000 in 2003/2004. The figures show 415,000 visitors helped bring in £1.5 million in fees, with the cathedral also benefiting from legacies left by members of the public. See PA story RELIGION Minster. PA Photo: John Giles.

2016/09/05 – Lady Helen Mary

Never contradict a lady when you get the following instruction: “Do not open untill midsomers day”. A “Continental” would presume, that “midsomersday” would be June 21st, when the summer starts. For English people it is however June 24th. The present was a Svarovski Mickey Mouse (On the Black Watch was a Svarovski boutique 😉 ) The card on the left is a panel of wall paper painted for Mary to remind her of the birth dates of all (8) grandchildren (from left top to right bottom):

  • India Young (1988),
  • Archibald Young (1991),
  • Jackson (Sonny) Miller (2006),
  • Minnie Young (1996),
  • Kitty McIntosh (1994),
  • Lily McIntosh (1993),
  • Tarn McIntosh (1995),
  • Harry McIntosh (1999).

Scan_20160904 (1)

The boot and stick on top refer to her Ladyship herself, not to forget her own birthday: December 1, 1939 🙂 🙂 🙂





To: Lady H.M. Stewart-Wilson

Quince, North Curry, Somerset


Dear Mary,

1702My secretary draw my attention to your cruise plans for 2017: a cruise around South America, 77 nights (without a bath!?!), with a female friend who you met on your last cruise, a certain Jen. Do I know her??? Anyway, you will sail January 8, 2017 on a “strange” vessel… 

1705Then you will sail later, on a better known vessel, but with a man who writes a lot about mine and your family on his blog, to the high society cities Nice (have you a dinner date there???), Cannes and Gibraltar plus some Spanish cities, 16 nights. You have (thank God!) separate (adjoining) cabins. He is a FOD, but you worked that out  this year. He has a charming partner 🙂 who is a great help in your kitchen, but he does not like cruising… 😦 Anyway, keep that companion L. as 1711a friend, because he has a bath in 5057Last but not least you take dear Alice for 3 days to Amsterdam. I presume you hope to meet “them”???Anyway, my dear, you are away 77 + 16 + 3 = 96 nights. I shall miss you. See you at Ascot 2017?

2016/08/29 – Lady Helen Mary with Sophy in Exmoor.

2016/08/27 – Lady Helen Mary’s forthcoming visit



EXT dep 10:30 am, AMS arr 01:00 pm.



Preparations for a noble stay…

Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson’s journey from Schiphol Arrivals to her temporary residence in Nimwegen.





2016/08/25 – C. Mary has a nice way of letting you guess. Referring to my blog “05A Stewart-Wilson 2016”: she answers by email with in the subject line: “Your view for another time”:


2016/08/21 – Visiting Somerset day 4

An impression of Quince with their present occupants,  a (short) walk along the clear canal of Bridgewater. And at 03:50PM we drive towards Exeter Airport, which takes about 1 hour. Mary is back home in time to visit the Evening songs at St Peter and St Paul.

2016/08/20 – Visiting Somerset day 3

An enclosed back yard -although paved 😦 – ideal for (high) tea, lounge drinks, kir royal and parties. A pity that there is only one deck chair for sunning 🙂


A brisk walk with breathtaking views, followed by a Ploughman’s Platter & Thatchers 

🙂 🙂 🙂


-kevinOn Saturday evening Mary had invited a friend, Joan, for dinner. But there was an extra “touch” for the guests: a classical guitar concert by Kevin Toller and his daughter Louise.

Five pieces and an “encore” upon request from the hostess. Vivaldi (andante from the concerto for 2 mandolines) and Boccherini (famous menuetto) were outstanding!!!

Courtesy of

2016/08/19 – Visiting Somerset day 2

A room with a view 🙂

(Methodist Church opposite the house, with a graveyard)


The car with number plate BSW 2, a visit to Stoke Saint Gregory and a visit to the Church of St Peter and St Paul (Mary’s church).

Hestercombe, Taunton: a mixture of wild woods, English style gardens and a lot of architectural highlights 🙂




Raclette cheese bake with a cornichon and caper salad (Pierre)

Seared Brixham scallops with garlic and parsley (Mary)

Chicken liver on toast with onion marmalade (Luke)


Slow roast duck with fondant potatoes, summer vegetables and Parmesan cream (Mary & Luke)

Fillet of turbot with courgette noodles and ginger butter sauce (Pierre)


France/Loire Valley: 2011 Muscadet sur Lie, Château de l’Oiseliniére

2016/08/18 – Visiting Somerset day 1

As from now all times are in GMT (= UTC +1 and Nimwegen -1)

  • 08:27 AM – 09:57 train to Amsterdam Airport
  • 10:30 AM – 12:00 noon Lounge 41


  • 12:30 PM Boarding BE1534 Amsterdam – Exeter
  • 01:00 PM Ready for departure, no towing available; when it was there eventually we had a long way taxiing to the “Polderbaan” 36L
  • 01:30 PM Departure from Amsterdam–Schiphol
  • 02:40 PM Arrival in Exeter
  • As we were sitting in the middle row (15) of the plane, and we had to leave the plane via the rear end, we were the last to leave and to enter the arrivals hall; there an endless row of passengers was waiting to be admitted… Far from efficient 😦 😦 😦

Mary was waiting for us and drove from Exeter via Taunton to North Curry, about a 1 hour drive.

Lady Mary was born in Thorn Falcon House… A good excuse to show us around the surroundings of North Curry and the breathtaking views of Thorn Falcon.


201608181933N_Curry_Watering the plants

201608181935N_Curry_Watering the plants

2016/08/17 – Lady Helen Mary

Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson is a lady of her time: I humbly asked if I could use an internet connection at Quince… “Of course have I Wi-Fi!!!”

So blogging will go on as during the cruise: with the laptop, tablet to take pictures and… Florence Nightingale’s Wi-Fi 🙂



2016/08/02 – Lady Helen Mary

Mary Stewart-Wilson + companion

A strange contribution from Lady Mary to my blog:

[1] Why am I wearing the blue suit that she loved more than a tuxedo or dinner jacket?

[2] Mary drinks Brookford Chardonnay and I drink coffee 😦

[3] Where is the picture taken? Not in the Glentanar restaurant, not on her balcony 8002. Considering our outfits, it cold be during a grill dinner at the pool deck 🙂 🙂 🙂

2016/07/27 – This one is a MUST for Lady Mary / Florence Nightingale: in case we do not meet each other at the arrivals exit, go to:


and you will find this meeting point:


2016/07/12 – “Old Brewery” & Sentry box, North Curry

At the time, that Sir Blair Aubyn and Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson resided at “The Old Brewery” in North Curry, there was for the eight grandchildren a magnificent playhouse in the back yard: the official sentry box that Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson got from HM Queen Elisabeth II.




2016/07/05 – Sir Blair

One of four sentry boxes located in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace until 1992. With Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson, KCVO, until 2011.

imageFour Royal sentry boxes, including the offered lot, were used by soldiers of the Household Division of the British Army stationed on ‘guard duty’ outside Buckingham Palace until they were officially replaced in 1992. Two (or possibly three) of these four sentry boxes, which were used by soldiers for shelter during periods of heavy rain, were seemingly saved by a Major Marsham, thereafter intended for use in the Royal Mews. However, upon the personal request of Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson KCVO, and probably in consideration of his lifetime of service in the British Army along with his terms as both Equerry to HM The Queen and Deputy Master of the Royal Household, Stewart-Wilson was actually given the above example. Unfortunately, during the process of the current lot being restored a few years ago, the Royal cypher, which had previously so proudly emblazoned its pediment, was ‘painted over’, with the intention at the time of the ‘ERII’ monogram being re-done at a later stage, and evidently this has never been painted back on again. Sadly this appears to have been due to the death, in 2011, of Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson shortly after his request for the cypher to be re-applied to the sentry box. Following his education at Eton College, Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson completed training as a young potential officer at Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, Berkshire, before he had even reached the age of twenty years old. His first commission was as an officer with the Scots Guards inwilson1_161699c 1949, and between 1955-7 he earned the position of Adjutant in the 2nd Battalion of the Scots Guards. He served as Aide-de-Camp to the Governor-General of New Zealand, the Viscount Cobham, from 1957 to 1959, before a term as Equerry to HRH Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester till 1962. Later, in 1975 and 1976, Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson was made Deputy Military and Air Attaché based in Vienna, and subsequently held the post of Deputy Master of the Royal Household and Equerry to HM Queen Elizabeth II for 18 years. During this latter phase of his illustrious career, the period 1976-94, Stewart-Wilson was honoured as a Lieutenant, Royal Victorian Order (L.V.O.) in 1983, before being invested in 1989 as a Commander, Royal Victorian Order (C.V.O.) and then in 1994 as Knight Commander (K.C.V.O), the same year he was promoted to Extra Equerry to HM the Queen. He attained the rank of Major with the Atholl Highlanders in 1996, finally becoming Lieutenant-Colonel in 2003.

2016/07/05 – Belinda Stewart-Wilson on YouTube in



2016/07/04 – Lady Helen Mary – Welcome to the church of St Peter and St Paul, North Curry in the Benefice of Athelney

The Church of St. Peter and St Paul stands in a magnificent position dominating the approach to the village across the Levels from the North. At night when floodlit it almost seems to hang in the sky. It is one of the oldest, and certainly the most impressive, building in the community which it has served for about seven centuries. The octagonal tower is unusual, though not unique, among Somerset Churches (there are others at Stoke St. Gregory and Barrington). Its primary function is to witness to the glory of God, and it is a powerful reminder of the centrality of the Christian Gospel in our Somerset history. Alfred’s establishment of a first English Christian Kingdom began from the Island of Athelney a couple of miles to the north east more than eleven centuries ago. In the twenty-first century the Church is maintained and used by a loyal and dedicated congregation who enjoy a rich tradition of worship, and work hard to maintain and enhance the beauty of this remarkable building. Please feel free to join us at worship, to explore the richness of the building in your own time, or simply to use it for a time of private peace and reflection. You are always welcome.


2016/06/28 – Lady Helen Mary & Belinda & Sonny
















Dear Lady Mary,

Say never that I can’t put one plus one together!!! We live in the age of cyber… Nevertheless I wish you, Belinda and Sonny a very nice evening. And a lot of success for our soloist!


2016/06/25 – Lady Helen Mary

QUOTATION: “Am off early tomorrow [Saturday] so won’t be blogging on again until next Thursday evening when I get back from London. I will think of you on Monday Morning around 11.oc. I hope the hole will not be too big and not too sore. I am in the tunnel on Tuesday at 2.oc [Princess Grace Hospital]”


We wish you all the best, and enjoy your weekend in London.

2016/06/24 Lady Helen Mary

I waited… Till the English start of spring… A strange date for us, Continentals… but not in vain… Out of the wonderful blue box came a Swarovski gift from Lady Helen Mary. I kept my promise, dear companion!


2016/06/19 – Lady Helen Mary


A flower tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II’s 90th birthday. SAINT Peter AND SAINT PAUL’s Church, North Curry, Somerset.


2016/06/16 – Sir Blair & Lady Helen Mary


October 1961.




2016/06/16 – Lady Helen Mary

In her youth a straight backed amazon.


It is not only her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II who gives “acte de présence” at Trooping the Colour Ceremony. Here Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson entertains the American attaché Jim Mc Garity at the festivities in 1973.


2016/06/15 – Lady Helen Mary – guitar playing






2016/06/14 – Lady Helen Mary


Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson Fox’s brother is Charles St. Vigor Fox, born on 14 March 1941. He is the son of Major Wilfred Michael Fox and Anthea Helen Orr Ewing.

Charles St. Vigor Fox b. 1941 m. 1964 Charlotte Certhia Ingram b.???? div. 1993


Lawrence St. Vigor Fox b. 1965 & a Danish partner ??? b.????


Frederick St Vigor Fox, b. 14 Nov 2014.

Charles St. Vigor Fox m. 1994 Nicola Louise Kennedy b.??? div. 2013


2016/06/11 – Lady Helen Mary


Helen Mary (1948, so nearly 9 years old) with Daisy

2016/06/08 – Lady Helen Mary


JUDY & (not yet Lady) HELEN MARY

2016/06/02 – Lady Helen Mary

Grandparents (left): Sir Ian Leslie Orr Ewing b.1893 d.1958 m.1917 Helen Bridget Orr Ewing – Gibbs b.1896 d.????


Parents (right):Major Wilfred Michael Fox b.???? d.1975 m.1938 Anthea HelenFox – Orr Ewing b.1917 d.2006



  Helen Mary Fox b.1939                                                             Charles St Vigor Fox b.1941)







2016/06/01 – Invitation by her Ladyship

I take the liberty to quote the entire e-mail dated May 30, 06:41pm from Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson to yours truly.


Dear Companion Luke. From Monday 15th – Sunday 21st August I am [at the moment] tucked into Quence Cottage, The Pavement. Should it amuse you and Pierre to pop over for a night of three? That would be lovely for me. However if your engagement diaries are anything like mine, I expect they are already full. So I will be not too upset if you are unable to come. Luke, this is a proper invitation!!! With love from your Companion, Mary  Stewart-Wilson.


The result is:


2016/06/01 – Family Stewart-Wilson


Left to right: eldest daughter Alice b. 1963, youngest daughter Belinda b. 1970, mother Mary Stewart-Wilson Fox b. 1939, grandmother Anthea Orr Ewing b. 1917 d. 2006, middle daughter Sophy b.1966.

2016/05/31 – Lady Helen Mary

THORN FALCON HOUSE; a perfect childhood home. Until Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson and Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson bought The old Brewery in 1985, their children Alice, Sophy and Belinda also grew up here. After Mary’s Father died in 1975 the house was just enormous  for her Mother, and Blair, Mary and their daughters took over all the back. As Mary says , ‘it was huge fun to see my children riding their ponies over the same fields that I had ridden over as a child, and to know that they were likely to tumble off in the same places. My brother and I were desperately sad to have to sell the house after Mummy died in 2006, but time moves on and our lives had moved in different ways.’

Thorn Falcon House

a family picture


From left to right Charles St. Vigor Fox b. 1941 with horse Vera,  Major Wilfred Michael Fox b.???? d.1975, Anthea Helen Orr Ewing b.1917 d.2006, Helen Mary Fox b.1939 with her pony Daisy.

2016/05/30 – Belinda


This is NOT Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II in her young years. This is Belinda Stewart-Wilson, daughter of Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson and Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson Fox, born April 16, 1970.

2016/05/28 – Lady Helen Mary


William Hore b.???? d.1745


Walter Hore b.???? d.1795


William Hore b.???? d.1798


Walter HoreRuthven d.1878 & Mary Elizabeth Thornton Ruthven, Lady Ruthven of Freeland


William Hore d.1847


Walter James Hore-Ruthven, 9th Lord Ruthven of Freeland d.1921


Charles Lindsay Orr Ewing d.1903 & Hon. Beatrice Mary Leslie Hore-Ruthven


Sir Ian Leslie Orr Ewing d.1958


Major Wilfred Michael Fox  d.1975 &  Anthea Helen Orr Ewing b.1917 d.2006


Helen Mary Fox b. Dec 1, 1939 & Charles St. Vigor Fox b.1941. 


Lt. Col. Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson b. 1929  d. 2011 m. 1962 Helen Mary Fox




Alice Helen b. 1963                                   Sophia Mary b. 1966        Belinda Anthea b. 1970

m. 1985                                                       m. 1991                                m. (1st, 2nd) diss

Jonathan Cecil Ian Young                       Alistair McIntosh                Bennet F. Miller

|ISSUE|                                                      |ISSUE|                                |ISSUE|

Mary Katherine              b. 1988             Lily      b. 1993                     Jackson b. 2006

Archibald Blair Cecil      b. 1991             Kitty    b. 1994

Minnie Rose Alice        b. 1996              Tarn     b. 1995

                                                                    Harry  b. 1999


Genealogy of Lady Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson Fox after the maternal line

Helen Mary Stewart-Wilson Fox b. Dec 1 1939, daughter of

Major Wilfred Michael Fox b.???? d.1975 m.1938 & Anthea Helen Orr Ewing b.1917 d.2006, daughter of  

Sir Ian Leslie Orr Ewing b.1893 d.1958 m.1917 & Helen Bridget Gibbs b.1896 d.????, daughter of 

Hon. Henry Lloyd Gibbs b.1861 d.1907 m.1887 & Alice Mary Crutchley b.???? d.1942, daughter of

General Charles Crutchley b.1810 d.1898 m.[unknown].????, issue also 2 sons.

2016/05/27 – Atholl Highlanders

Active 1839-
Country Scotland
Type Infantry
Role Personal bodyguard
Size One company
Part of Private army
Garrison/HQ Blair Atholl
Motto(s) Furth Fortune and Fill the Fetters
March The Atholl Highlanders
Current commander Lieutenant Colonel Bruce Murray
Colonel-in-Chief The Duke of Atholl
Tartan Murray of Atholl

The Atholl Highlanders is a Scottish ceremonial infantry regiment. The regiment is not part of the British Army but is in the private employ of the Duke of Atholl, and based in Blair Atholl, where it serves as a tourist attraction. Although it has no military role, and is made up of around 80 friends and estate workers, it has been called the United Kingdom’s, or Europe’s, only “private army” recognized by the law. The name Atholl Highlanders dates to the formation of the 77th Regiment of Foot by the 4th Duke in 1777. The regiment was formed as a relief for other regiments serving in North America, and spent most of its existence in Ireland. The terms upon which the regiment was raised stated that the men were to be employed for either three years or the duration of the war in America. In 1781, the original three-year term ended, and the men expected the regiment to be disbanded. However, the regiment was transported to England and marched to Portsmouth to be embarked for service in the East Indies. Upon learning of this, the men mutinied, and the embarkation orders were countermanded. The regiment was marched toMurray_of_Atholl Berwick, where it disbanded in 1783. More than 50 years later, in 1839, the 6th Duke, as Lord Glenlyon, resurrected the regiment as a bodyguard which he took to the Eglinton Tournament at Eglinton Castle, Ayrshire. Three years later, in 1842, the regiment escorted Queen Victoria during her tour of Perthshire. In 1844, when the Queen stayed as a guest of the Duke at Blair Castle, the regiment mounted the guard for the entire duration of her stay. In recognition of the service that the regiment provided during her two visits, the Queen announced that she would present the Atholl Highlanders with colours, thus giving the regiment official status. The regiment’s first stand of colours was presented by Lady Glenlyon on behalf of the Queen in 1845. It received new colours in 1979 from Mrs David Butter, the wife of the Lord Lieutenant of Perth and Kinross. A third stand of colours was presented in 2006 by the Duchess of Atholl. Under the 7th Duke, the regiment regularly provided guards for royal visitors to Blair Castle (which was a convenient stopping point on the journey to Balmoral). The regiment also attended the Braemar Gathering, while an annual gathering was held in the first week in September in which the regiment paraded, then participated in various trials of strength and stamina. Following the First World War, parades of the regiment became fewer, although it did provide guards when the Crown Prince of Japan and Faisal of Iraq visited Blair Castle in 1921 and 1933 respectively.[1] After 1933, there was little activity, and it seemed the regiment would disappear into obscurity until, in 1966, it was reformed by the 10th Duke, who made the decision to revive the regiment’s annual parade. It was feared that the regiment would be disbanded following his death in 1996, until his successor wrote to the estate trustees insisting that he would continue his traditional role.  Although the regiment has never seen active service, many of its number served with The Scottish Horse, the local yeomanry regiment of Perthshire in the First and Second World Wars.

Today, the Atholl Highlanders is a purely ceremonial regiment, of approximately 100 men, including pipes and drums. This regiment has no connection, except the name, with the 77th Foot of 1777. The regiment wears the tartan of the Clan Murray of Atholl and has as its cap badge the clan crest approved by the Duke, which it wears along with a sprig of juniper, which is the clan’s plant, and is presented by the Duke on his annual inspection. The regiment is responsible for the defence of Blair Castle, the surrounding estate and its inhabitants, but in practice usually only parades twice a year at the regiment’s annual inspection when the present Duke comes from his home in South Africa to inspect his men, and the Atholl Gathering Highland Games, which is hosted by the Duke, on the last weekend in May. However, there are certain other occasions when the Duke permits the regiment to parade, such as royal visits to Blair Castle (when the regiment would serve as the guard), or on tours overseas.Gathering (14)

Lady Helen Mary Steward-Wilson, September 2009, Year of he Homecoming.

A notable instance occurred during the Year of Homecoming in 2009, when all of Scotland’s clans took part in a parade in Edinburgh. This was the first time that the regiment had paraded in the Scottish capital in nearly 30 years. The regiment is usually stood down between January and May of each year, depending on whether new recruits are invited to join. Normally, the regiment’s training starts at the beginning of May, in preparation for the Atholl Gathering at the end of the month; however, if new recruits join, they must gain a standard of foot and arms drill before being permitted to parade with the rest of the regiment, which they practise between January and March.  The regiment’s officers are usually lairds from the areas around Blair Atholl, while other ranks are men with connections either to the local area or to the Duke’s estate. Membership of the regiment is by the personal invitation of the Duke. Both the present Duke and his heir apparent, the Marquess of Tullibardine, were commissioned by the 11th Duke into the regiment. The regiment carries Lee-Metford rifles on parade.


A contingent of Atholl Highlanders commanded by Michael Murray, the Marquis of Tullibarden, [a marquis is the eldest son of a duke] were invited in a ceremonial role to be present at the Windsor Horse Show in May of this year in celebration of Her Majesty The Queen’s 90th Birthday.

2016/05/26 – Ruthven dynasty

Earl of Gowrie is a title that has been created twice, once in the Peerage of Scotland and once in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, both times for members of the Ruthven family. It takes its name from Gowrie, a historical region and ancient province of Scotland. The Ruthven family descended from Sir William Ruthven, who was created Lord Ruthven in the Peerage of Scotland in 1488.



William Ruthven, 1st Lord Ruthven (d. c. 1528); William Ruthven, 2nd Lord Ruthven (d. 1552); Patrick Ruthven, 3rd Lord Ruthven (b. c. 1520, d. 1566);

William Ruthven, 1st Earl of Gowrie, 4th Lord of Ruthven, (b. c. 1541, d. 1584); James Ruthven, 2nd Earl of Gowrie, 5th Lord Ruthven, (b. 1575, d. 1588); John Ruthven, 3rd Earl of Gowrie, 6th Lord Ruthven (b. 1577, d. 1600);

James Ruthven, 7th Lord Ruthven of Freeland (b. 1777, d. 1853);  Mary Hore-Ruthven, 8th Lady Ruthven of Freeland (b. c. 1784, d. 1864);

Walter Hore-Ruthven, 9th Lord Ruthven (b. 1838, d. 1921); Walter, 10th Lord Ruthven (b. 1870, d. 1956);

Bridget Helen Monckton, 11th Lady Ruthven of Freeland (b. 1896, d. 1982); Charles James Ruthven Howard, 12th Lord Ruthven of Freeland (b. 1923, d. 1994).

2016/05/24 – Sir Blair



  • Henry Black (later Stewart), 8th of Balnakeilly b. 1809 d. 1881  –>
  • Maj. Alexander Blair Stewart, 9th of Balnakeilly b. 1849 d. 1936 –>
  • Muriel Athelstan Hood Stewart-Stevens, 10th of Balnakeilly b. 1899 d. 1982 –> 
  • Colonel Ralph Stewart Stewart-Wilson, 11th of Balnakeilly b. 1923 d. 2015 –>
  • Aubyn John Oliver Stewart-Wilson, 12th of Balnakeilly b. 1963–>
  • After Aubyn’s death, his son Archibald Aubyn Brian Stewart-Wilson b. 2002 will be 13th of Balnakeilly.

(As Lady Helen Mary Stwart-Wilson puts it: “It is dead men’s shoes in Scottish law” 😦 ).


Aubyn John Oliver Stewart-Wilson 12th of Balnakeilly

Aubyn John Oliver Stewart-Wilson was born in 1963. He is the son of ColonelRalph Stewart Stewart-Wilson11th of Balnakeilly and Rosalind Stedall. He married Tamara Alice MonicaCallaghan, daughter of Brian Callaghan.

Children of Aubyn John Oliver Stewart-Wilson and Tamara Alice MonicaCallaghan:

  • Cecilia Stewart-Wilson
  • Dougal George Stewart-Wilson b. Jan 1997, d. 11 Dec 2003
  • Archibald Aubyn Brian Stewart-Wilson b. 24 Jun 2002

2016/05/19 – Archibald

Archie with beard


Archibald Blair Cecil Young b. 1991; Blair after his grandfather Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson, Cecil after his father Jonathan Cecil Ian Young, and 🙂 🙂 🙂 .


Pages, it turns out, were not simply pages. There were different types of page with different titles and different duties. There were Pages of the Backstairs, Pages of the Presence and Pages of Honour.

Pages of Honour

Pages of Honour were young aristocrats from some of the wealthiest and most influential families in the nation. Appointed at around the age of eleven or twelve, these Pages often went on to take up positions in one of the Household regiments. Highly sought after, these posts paid well at £120. Pages of honour did not live in the royal palaces and had no official duties in the royal household. They were just required for formal ceremonial occasions, when they would attend in full ceremonial livery. The next phase of my research will involve trying to establish exactly what they would have worn and if any of these garments survive. I’m off to visit the experts from the Royal Dress Collection at Hampton Court and Kensington Palace.

Pages of the Backstairs

Pages of the Backstairs were less well born and in the middling ranks of the royal household. Six pages of the Backstairs were employed and worked in rotation. Historically, they would have waited outside the doors of the King’s Apartments but by the early eighteenth century they had moved within the Chamber. The Royal Bedchamber was a suite of the King’s private apartments where access was restricted to a select few. The most important duty of the Page of the Backstairs was to guard access to the Royal Body by policing access into the private apartments via the Back (private) stairs. Other duties of Pages of the Backstairs included serving the King’s private meals, attending to his royal needs, assisting with dressing and looking after the Bedchamber apartments. Roles within the bedchamber were strictly defined. For example in the reign of Queen Anne the Page of the Backstairs would fetch the basin and ewer for washing but it was the woman of the Bechamber would set it before the Queen. And whilst it was the the Page of the Backstairs who would reach for the glass and pass it to the  Woman of the Bedchamber, it was the high-born Lady-in-Waiting who would actually hand it to the Queen. We cannot be certain that by the time of the Regency that these rigid rules were still strictly adhered to but the royal household is marked by a longstanding tradition of continuity and it is unlikely that roles would have been radically different. 


The Pages of the Backstairs had bedrooms close to the King’s chamber so that they could be called on as necessary. On the floor plan illustrated a page’s bedroom can be identified close to the King’s Chamber in the north part of the building (on the left of the plan). There were at least two other page’s bedrooms close by. One Page of the Backstairs would be in waiting in the King’s Chambers and two would be in attendance upon the King during dinner. So although not high-born like the Pages of Honour their power lay in their ability to restrict or admit access to the monarch and in their potential influence on the monarch by their close contact with him. In 1817 they were paid £200 a year.

Pages of the Presence

PARCHIE2ages of the Presence, (Joseph Ince was one), had the lowest status of the three types of page. The main role of a Page of the Presence was to wait on the aristocratic Gentlemen or Lords in Waiting who were the King’s close companions and attendants. Pages of the Presence would also wait on the King’s visitors at meal times. They worked in more public areas and were not permitted access to the Bedchamber at all which meant they would have to liaise closely with the Pages of the Bedchamber is order to arrange for a visitor or member of the Royal Household to see the monarch in his private apartments. In 1821 first class pages earned between £230-£260, and the second class between £140-£170. They worked in strict rotations on a month-on, month-off basis. During their months off they would be paid 7 shillings (35p) a day for board and lodging. All Royal Pages of Honour have RED heels on their buckled court shoes. In Scotland they are known as THISTLE PAGES. The livery is in dark green, and they carry a wonderful tricorn hat which hangs from a hook on their belt. The best part of all for all the boys, is of course THE SWORD. There is only one thistle page at a time, who comes from a noble Scottish family. His job is to attend HM at the Thistle ceremony held in St Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh. It is a huge responsibility for small boys of only 11 or 12 and depending on how small they stay, they can do the job until they are 13/14 yrs old. HM Queen Elisabeth II (the boss) does not like them to be taller than her!!! Archibald Blair Cecil (Archie for insiders) did three years and it got to the stage where it became a worry when he went to public school. After one opening of parliament however the Captain of the Rugby team bent down from a great height and said ‘well done Archie’! The white tights are abit of a problem.


2016/05/14 – Lady Helen Mary & Belinda



At Alice’s wedding, November 10, 1985: now 30,5 years ago, only Mary’s hair has an other colour 🙂

2016/05/13 – Family Stewart-Wilson

After a lot of research in The Peerage I got a complete genealogy of Mary Stewart-Wilson:

Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson b. 17-07-1929 d. 24-052011
M 17-01-1962
LADY Helen Mary Fox b. 01-12-1939
  •  Alice Stewart-Wilson b. 14-06-1963 M 1985 Jonathan Young
    • India b. 1988
    • Archibald b. 1991
    • Minnie b.  1996
  • Sophy Stewart-Wilson b. 29-03-1966 M 1991 Alistair McIntosh
    • Lily b. 1993
    • Kitty b. 1994
    • Tarn b. 1995
    • Harry b. 1999
  • Belinda Stewart-Wilson b. 16-04-1971 (dIV.)
    • Sonny b. 2006

2016/05/12 – Sir Blair

BLAIR_comanding officer of the Duke of Atholls private army.

Blair Stewart-Wilson, comanding officer of the duke of Atholls private army

Duke of Atholl, rich Scot with castle and private army


George Iain Murray, the 10th Duke of Atholl, who was one of Scotland’s richest landowners and the commander of of Britain’s only private army, died yesterday at a hospital in Perth, Scotland. He was 64 and had suffered a stroke in December at Blair Castle, the family seat in the Perthshire highlands since 1269. The death of the 6-foot-5-inch Duke, known affectionately as Wee Iain, came a day after it was announced that he had placed the 120-room castle and much of the surrounding estate’s 140,000 acres into a charitable trust, a step that will save millions in inheritance taxes and guarantee that the historic property will remain under Scottish control. Although the move followed reports that the Duke, a bachelor, had misgivings about his dynastic heir, John Murray, a third cousin who lives in South Africa, the estate issued a statement denying any family friction. Even so, when Mr. Murray, a 65-year-old retired land surveyor whose relationship to the Duke had only recently been discovered, visited the castle with his wife, Peggy, last year, the Duke refused to meet the couple. Afterward he said he would break with tradition by splitting the family seat and leaving the estate and his private wealth to his 12-year-old half-nephew Robert Troughton rather than see the property fall into non-Scottish hands. He told associates he was worried that the Murrays viewed the estate as “a commercial proposition.” imagesF1IF3QNCNot that the Duke, who inherited the title and the estate from his third cousin in 1957, had been shy about cashing in on the estate’s commercial possibilities. Under his stewardship the estate became one of Britain’s most popular tourist attractions, drawing some 165,000 paying visitors a year. To help bolster its appeal the Duke had even reactivated the long-dormant Atholl Highlanders, an 80-man private army the Dukes of Atholl have been authorized to maintain since 1845. It seems that Queen Victoria, who had visited the castle the year before, had been so impressed by the outpouring of affection shown the sixth Duke by the local populace that she granted the right in perpertuity. For all its singular distinction, the army, whose officers have been limited to local landowners and whose ranks are recruited from the estate work force, has strictly ceremonial duties. And although the Duke drew the line at greeting the castle’s visitors personally, he appeared in full, highly photogenic kilted regalia during his army’s annual parades. During the grouse season he was even more photogenic, the very picture of an archetypal country nobleman, complete with tweed jacket and Fair Isle sweater, a 12-gauge side-by-side Purdey shotgun under his arm and a black labrador at his heels. The Duke, whose title dates from 1703 and whose family motto is “Furth, Fortune and Fill the Fetters,” has been listed as one of Britain’s 200 richest people, with an estimated wealth of more than $200 million. The Duke had scoffed at such reports, declaring himself land poor. For all that, he was a successful businessman who was educated at Eton and Oxford and later served as chairman of the Westminster regional newspaper group until his retirement in 1993. As Duke, he took his duties seriously, serving, among other things, as president of the National Trust for Scotland and captain of the House of Lords bridge team. One duty he did not pursue was producing an heir, although as a man perennially listed as Britain’s most eligible bachelor he had plenty of opportunities to marry, some even more subtle than a public appeal in 1992 from Lindi St. Clair, also known as Miss Whiplash and the self-styled founder of the Corrective Party, who offered her services as “a concubine or wife within a marriage of convenience” to keep his line going. The commander of Britain’s most photographed private army, who knew a publicity stunt when he saw one, did not respond. In addition to his half-nephew, he is survived by his half-sister, Sarah Troughton

2016/05/08 – Sir Blair & Lady Helen Mary & Belinda

From: the Peerage:

wilson1_161699cLt.-Col. Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson

b. 17 July 1929, d. 24 May 2011. Lt.-Col. Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson was the son of Aubyn Harold Raymond Wilson and Muriel Athelstan Hood Stewart-Stevens, 10th of Balnakeilly. He married Helen Mary Fox, daughter of Major Wilfred Michael Fox and Anthea Helen Orr Ewing, on 17 January 1962. He died on 24 May 2011 at age 81.  He was educated at Eton College, Windsor, Berkshire, England. He was educated at Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, Berkshire, England. He was commissioned in 1949, in the service of the Scots Guards. He was Aide-de-Camp to the Governor-General of New Zealand, Viscount Cobham between 1957 and 1959. He was Equerry to HRH Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester between 1960 and 1962. He was Deputy Military and Air Attaché to Vienna between 1975 and 1976. He held the office of Deputy Master of the Household and Equerry to HM Queen Elizabeth II between 1976 and 1994. He was invested as a Lieutenant, Royal Victorian Order (L.V.O.) in 1983. He was invested as a Commander, Royal Victorian Order (C.V.O.) in 1989. He was invested as a Knight Commander, Royal Victorian Order (K.C.V.O.) in 1994.1 He held the office of Extra Equerry to HM Queen Elizabeth II in 1994. He gained the rank of Major in 1996 in the service of the Atholl Highlanders. He lived in 2003 at The Old Brewery, North Curry, Somerset, England. He gained the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel in 2003.

stewart-wilson_maryHelen Mary Fox

b. 1 December 1939. Helen Mary Fox is the daughter of Major Wilfred Michael Fox and Anthea Helen Orr Ewing. She married Lt.-Col. Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson, son of Aubyn Harold Raymond Wilson and Muriel Athelstan Hood Stewart-Stevens, 10th of Balnakeilly, on 17 January 1962.1  Helen Mary Fox usually went by her middle name of Mary. From 17 January 1962, her married name became Stewart-Wilson. She lived in 2003 at The Old Brewery, North Curry, Somerset, England.

Children of Lt.-Col. Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson and Lady Helen Mary Fox:

  • Alice Helen Stewart-Wilson+ b. 14 Jun 1963
  • Sophia Mary Stewart-Wilson+ b. 29 Mar 1966
  • Belinda Anthea Stewart-Wilson b. 16 Apr 1970

images1D71PZOPBelinda Anthea Stewart-Wilson

b. 16 April 1970. Belinda Anthea Stewart-Wilson is the daughter of Lt.-Col. Sir Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson and Helen Mary Fox.
1. She married William Anthony David St. Lawrence Gethin, son of Anthony Michael Gethin and Vanse Barlow, in 1997. She and William Anthony David St. Lawrence Gethin were divorced in 2000. From 1997, her married name became Gethin.
2. She married in 2004 actor and comedian Ben Miller, they were divorced in 2011. They have a son, Sonny (b. 2006) From 2004, her married name became Miller,

2016/05/07 – And then, there are 3 daughters; Belinda Stewart-Wilson is stunning 🙂





















2016/05/05 – Sir Blair

At the choir and socially I am engaged and -after the latest ships gossip, prior to the Captain’s dinner- married to her Ladyship Mary Stewart-Wilson, widow of Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson. This is what Google tells about Blair:

Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson’s role was to assist the Master of the Household, with particular responsibility for the Queen’s private engagements. A man who inspired great affection, he was also admired and trusted by the Royal Family for his soldierly qualities of efficiency and calmness under pressure: when a fire famously engulfed Windsor Castle in November 1992, Stewart-Wilson immediately got on the telephone to the then Master of the Household, Maj-Gen Sir Simon Cooper, to inform him that there was “a bit of a problem”. A career soldier with the Scots Guards for nearly 30 years, Stewart-Wilson had only recently arrived at the wilson1_161699cBritish embassy in Vienna as defence attaché when he received a telephone call from the Palace inviting him to apply for his role in the Royal Household. He soon settled into the arcane and demanding world of Court life: state visits, overseas tours, Commonwealth Conferences, State Openings of Parliament, investitures, Royal Ascot, garden parties and the many other activities which demand the Queen’s attention. Among his tasks was to help the Queen with her arrangements for house guests at the various royal residences throughout the year. He enjoyed his role, and privately described the Queen as “the most competent, fair and even-handed boss anyone could hope for, a person with humour and an enjoyable sense of fun, and someone who, at all times is very good company. All the above qualities are specially remarkable in a person lumbered with a status so high that it tends to affect the attitude and behaviour of everyone around about that person .” He worked closely with the Master of the Household, whose department was divided into three branches: F (food), H (housekeeping) and G (general, dealing with everything from the china, glass and wine cellars to palace attendants and staff). He was also responsible for royal warrants and, during one period, for updating the telephone exchanges in all the royal residences. Stewart-Wilson always insisted that he was “lucky” — not least because of the circumstances surrounding his birth. He was nearly 50 when his mother informed him that, when she was pregnant with him, her gynaecologist had told her that, for medical reasons, she should not have this third baby and should have an abortion. The procedure was duly carried out, yet just under nine months later Blair Aubyn Stewart-Wilson was born on July 17 1929 . His mother, Muriel (who had twins in her family), concluded that she had been bearing twins, and that only one had been removed. In 1934 Blair’s father, Aubyn, who had fought with the Black Watch in the Great War, died aged 45. Two years later Muriel married Major Greville Stevens, and shortly afterwards she inherited the Stewart family estate of Balnakeilly in Perthshire . Blair was sent to Eton, and in early 1948 arrived at Sandhurst. Commissioned into the 2nd Battalion the Scots Guards (2SG), he saw active service in Malaya in 1950-51, when his platoon killed six terrorists. After returning to Britain, he kept vigil at the catafalque of King George VI in 1952; and on Coronation Day he was detailed to command a half company of street liners in the Mall. “For the return trip to Buckingham Palace,” he recalled, “all the carriages were closed against the rain except the one carrying the substantial figure of Queen Salote of Tonga, whom we enjoyed seeing smiling and waving happily in the rain, while the little Malay Sultan accompanying Her Majesty sat hunched and unhappy, facing her.” Stewart-Wilson served with BAOR, and in 1957 was appointed ADC to the next Governor-General of New Zealand, Viscount Cobham. In August that year he embarked on the six-week voyage to Wellington. On board were Cobham with his wife and their eight children; 17 domestic servants; two ADCs; one lady-in-waiting; and a governess and a nanny. In the hold were a Rolls-Royce and five other cars belonging to Lord Cobham, along with Stewart-Wilson’s Rover 90. In 1957 Stewart-Wilson was appointed equerry to the Duke of Gloucester, based at Wellington Barracks in London, and in 1962 he married his cousin, Mary Fox — “the best and most sensible thing I ever did”. There were further postings in Malaysia and Germany before, in 1970, he became GSO 1 Foreign Liaison Section (Army) at the MoD . After retiring from the Royal Household in 1994, Stewart-Wilson served as an Extra Equerry. As the Queen’s Trustee on the Board of Royal Armouries from 1995 to 2004, on one occasion he spent a day in armour riding on horseback to see what the experience was like; he sent a photograph of himself thus equipped to the Queen, with the message: “With love from your knight in shining armour”. Later, when the Queen saw his grandson, Archie, one of her pages of honour, she told him: “I have a picture of your grandfather on my desk.”  Stewart-Wilson was appointed LVO in 1983, CVO in 1989 and KCVO in 1994. He was Lieutenant-Colonel Commanding the Atholl Highlanders from 2003. In the mid-1950s, he was a bobsleigh enthusiast . He also enjoyed fly fishing, shooting and stalking. Blair Stewart-Wilson is survived by his wife and three daughters.

NOTE: prior to uploading this article, her Ladyship Mary has read and approved the article. Quoting her: “It is all in the open on the internet and true”.