Arthur Herbert Tennyson Somer-Cocks, 6th Baron Somers, was born in Freshwater, Isle of Wight, on 20th March 1887. He was educated at Mulgrave Castle, Charterhouse and New College, Oxford. He joined the 1st Life Guards, but cut short his Army career to farm in Canada. With the outbreak of war in 1914, he returned to rejoin his Regiment and was subsequently attached to the Tank Corps. He retired from the Army in 1924, having become actively interested in Scouting two years previously. In 1926, Lord Somers was appointed Governor of Victoria, Australia, and State Chief Scout. He led the 8,000 British Scouts to the World Jamboree in Holland in 1937. During the following winter he travelled the country visiting Scouts and talking at Scout conferences. He also undertook the task of putting the Movement on a sound financial footing with the launching of a National Scout Fund in 1938. When war was declared, Lord Somers gave an immediate lead in support of the National Service. He recommended that Scouts wear their uniforms and set the example himself when, for the first time in history, Scout uniform was seen in the House of Lords. In March 1940, he was appointed Red Cross Commissioner for the Middle East, still maintaining close contact with Scouts wherever he went. He was elected Chief Scout on 29th January 1941, and travelled long distances to attend rallies and conferences, despite his failing health. He died on 14th July 1944.
Where to see this painting?
The Scout Association
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