Lady Rosemary Leveson- Gower

The Society Girl Who Nearly Became Queen of Britain

And her maverick brother Lord Alastair Sutherland Leveson-Gower 

     A NEW BOOK IN 2021 



"  Everything is more beautiful because we're doomed........"    Homer.


                                          "Everything is more beautiful 
                                          because we’re doomed.
                                          You will never be lovelier than you are now. 
                                          We will never be here again...."


The heartbreaking tale of Lady Rosemary Leveson-Gower, ( 1893-1930),  a great Society beauty, and her doomed brother Lord Alastair Sutherland Leveson-Gower ( 1890-1921).   They  were  the daughter and son of a  Scottish Duke, their mother was the charismatic  Millicent Sutherland, a popular  Society hostess, writer and pioneering nurse and hospital matron  who repeatedly clashed with the Army Generals of the Great War, on how to deal with the vast number of  wounded and dead.


As a debutante  Rosemary dazzled Edward, Prince of Wales  before  Freda Dudley Ward and Wallis Simpson,  his better known mistresses. The Prince’s family scoffed at Rosemary’s chequered family pedigree and dismissed the love-weary Prince’s designs, leaving Rosemary, herself  a heroic Red Cross nurse during the Great War, to be swept into marriage by Eric, Viscount Ednam, a close friend of Edward, and heir to an ancient English Earldom. The Ednams became a dynamic couple of the Bright Young Things era of the 1920s, but they endured a  chaotic life together.


Rosemary's brother Alastair was a boy’s own type of adventurer in his teens in Canada. He became  a soldier, reaching the rank of Major in the Royal Horse Guards. He did  sterling work in the Great War in Greece and Paris and acted as one of Sir Edward Grey’s back room boys in the Foreign Office.   He married an American heiress and had everything to live for, including the birth of a baby daughter in March 1921 . Then on a hunting tour in Southern Africa in April 1921, he was struck down suddenly with malarial fever and died.  


Rosemary met her own sudden death in a horrific aeroplane crash, which also killed three of her fellow aristocrats. The unexplained accident (which remains unsolved even today) caused giant ripples across the whole of British Society.  Rumours were rife of sabotage, especially as it was said that Edward, Prince of Wales, had only just escaped death in the same crash by changing his travel plans at the last minute.


William Cross (author of several revealing biographies on the British gentry) unravels Rosemary and Alastair’s life and times and offers some startling and sinister facts about the aftermath of their tragic death.


This very moving  story is also offered by William Cross as an illustrated talk/ presentation.  Will Cross is working on completing the book    " ROSEMARY AND ALASTAIR”    by late  2019.  Both Rosemary and Alastair Leveson-Gower were friends of  The Honourable Gwyneth Morgan, the wayward daughter of Courtenay, Lord Tredegar.  Cross  knows this era of the Bright Young Things  very well from his previous books of on the Carnarvons of Highclere and the Morgans of Tredegar House. The Sutherlands succeeded the Morgans as the occupants of 39 Portman Square

London, in 1914.  The families knew each other on the London scene and in Scotland.


 “ ROSEMARY AND ALASTAIR”   is another largely untold British Society tale that raises disturbing issues, even now, over eighty years on.  



William Cross, FSA Scot is a writer and researcher based in Newport, South Wales. He is the author of three books on Almina, 5th Countess of Carnarvon and one on her husband, the 5th Earl of Tutankhamun fame and another on the the story of Lord Carnarvon, Howard Carter and Tutankhamun. Will has also published in his own right ( or with his writing partner, Monty Dart ) eight  books on members of  the Morgan family of Tredegar House. Monty and Will are authorities on the Women in the Morgan family. Will is a member of the Society of Authors and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Will Cross' latest books are

 " Myths About The Morgans of Tredegar House" Busting the History Fraudsters. 2018

"Prince Victor Duleep Singh and the Curse of the Carnarvons"  2019

" The Morgans of Tredegar House : Great War Roll of Honour : The Hoare,Lindsay and Mundy Great Grandsons of the First Lord and Lady Tredegar who died during the 1914-1918 War.  2018

"An album of sexually explicit verses & jokes : From the collection of Lois Ina Sturt and Reggie Pembroke."


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