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Gerald Walter Erskine Loder, 1st Baron Wakehurst LLB JP DL (25 October 1861 - 30 April 1936) was a British politician.

The fourth son of Sir Robert Loder Bt, Member of Parliament for New Shoreham, he was educated at Eton and at Trinity College, Cambridge.[1] He became a barrister at the Inner Temple in 1888.

He was Conservative Member of Parliament for Brighton from 1889-1905. He was Private Secretary to the President of the Local Government Board (Charles Thomson Ritchie) from 1888-1892, and to Lord George Hamilton (Secretary of State for India), 1896-1901. He was briefly a Junior Lord of the Treasury in 1905.

A keen gardener, he purchased the Wakehurst Place estate in 1903 and spent 33 years developing the gardens, which today cover some 2 square kilometres (500 acres) and are owned by the National Trust. He was President of the Royal Arboricultural Society from 1926-1927 and President of the Royal Horticultural Society from 1929-1931. He was a Director of the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway from 1896,[2] and served as its last Chairman in December 1922.[3] He was also a director of its successor, the Southern Railway and later Chairman from 1934 until he resigned the chair in December 1934.[4] In June 1934 he was raised to the peerage as Baron Wakehurst, of Ardingly in the County of Sussex.

Lord Wakehurst married Lady Louise de Vere Beauclerk, eldest daughter of the 10th Duke of St Albans, in 1890. The couple had one son and four daughters. Lord Wakehurst died in April 1936, aged 74, and was succeeded in the barony by his only son John de Vere Loder.

The Loder Cup, New Zealand's oldest conservation award, is named after Gerald Loder.[5]


  1. ^ Loder, Gerald Walter Erskine in Venn, J. & J. A., Alumni Cantabrigienses, Cambridge University Press, 10 vols, 1922–1958.
  2. ^ Searle, Dave. "LB&SCR Directors". LB&SCR online. Retrieved 2009-04-26.  
  3. ^ Searle, Dave. "LB&SCR Chairmen". LB&SCR online. Retrieved 2009-04-26.  
  4. ^ Bonavia (1987). pp. 24–25, 29.
  5. ^ New Zealand Department of Conservation
  • Bonavia, Michael R. (1987). The History of the Southern Railway. London: Unwin Hyman. ISBN 0-04-385107-X.  

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir William Thackeray Marriott
Sir William Tindal Robertson
Member of Parliament for Brighton
1889 – 1905
With: Sir William Thackeray Marriott 1889–1893
Bruce Canning Vernon-Wentworth 1893–1905
Succeeded by
Bruce Canning Vernon-Wentworth
Ernest Amherst Villiers
Business positions
Preceded by
Charles C. Macrae
Chairman of the Board of Directors of the
London, Brighton and South Coast Railway

December 1922
Company merged into
Southern Railway
Preceded by
Hon. Everard Baring
Chairman of the Board of Director of the
Southern Railway

1932 – 1934
Succeeded by
Robert Holland-Martin
Peerage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baron Wakehurst
1934 – 1936
Succeeded by
John de Vere Loder


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