Fettes College, Carrington Rd, Edinburgh EH4 1QX, UK
University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 2JD, UK
Lieutenant-Colonel Ian Douglas Harvey RA (25 January 1914 – 10 January 1987) was a British businessman and politician, serving as a Conservative Member of Parliament and junior minister until his resignation in 1958. In his 1971 memoir To Fall Like Lucifer, Ian Harvey said with accuracy, ‘the name most closely associated with homosexuality in the public mind in Britain is unquestionably that of Oscar Wilde’.
Ian Douglas Harvey was educated at Fettes College and Christ Church, Oxford, where he was President of the Oxford University Conservative Association in 1935, and the Oxford Carlton Club and the Oxford Union Society in 1936. He graduated with a BA in 1937.
During the Second World War he served in the anti-aircraft arm of the Royal Artillery, becoming the Adjutant of 123 Light Antiaircraft Regiment Royal Artillery in 1940 and the Brigade Major of 33 AA Brigade RA in 1943, before serving on the staff of HQ AA Command in 1944. After studying at the Staff College, Camberley, he became Brigade Major of 100 AA Brigade in North-West Europe in 1945.
After the War he served as Lieutenant-Colonel commanding 566 LAA Regiment RA (City of London Rifles) from 1947 to 1950.
In 1949, he married Clare Mayhew, daughter of Sir Basil Edward Mayhew, KBE. The couple would have two daughters.
Post-war, he worked in public relations. He was a member of the Advertising Association and the Institute of Public Relations, and published Talk of Propaganda (1947) and The Technique of Persuasion (1951). From 1949 to 1956 he was a director of W. S. Crawford, an advertising firm.
He first stood as a Conservative Party Parliamentary candidate for the seat of Spelthorne in Middlesex in the 1945 general election but was defeated. Later, from 1947 to 1952 he held a seat on the Kensington Borough Council, and from 1949 to 1952 was also a Kensington South representative on the London County Council. Harvey was a governor of Birkbeck College.
In the 1950 general election he stood for Harrow East, winning the seat and holding it in the 1951 and 1955 general elections. From 1955 to 1957 he was secretary of the 1922 Committee. He was appointed a Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Supply in 1956, becoming a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign Office in 1958. He was a member of a House Select Committee that recommended "draconian punishments for practising homosexuals in the armed forces."
In November 1958, Harvey and a Guardsman from the Coldstream Guards were found in the bushes in St James's Park and arrested; Harvey tried to escape, and attempted to give a false name on arrest. Both were charged with gross indecency and breach of the park regulations; when tried on 10 December, the indecency charge was dropped and both were fined £5. Harvey subsequently resigned his ministerial post and his seat, forcing a by-election early in 1959, succeeded by Conservative Anthony Courtney; he paid the guardsman's fine as well as his own.
He returned to his earlier public relations work, acting as a director of Colman, Prentis and Varley from 1962 to 1963, and as Advertising Controller of Yardley of London from 1963 to 1964, when he became their Advertising Director, a position he held until 1966. In 1971 he published his memoir To Fall Like Lucifer. From 1972 onwards he was the Vice-President of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality, and from 1980 onwards Chairman of the Conservative Group for Homosexual Equality. He was the Chairman of Paddington Conservative Association from 1980 to 1983, and Westminster North Conservative Association in 1983. He contested the latter seat for the Inner London Education Authority in 1986, and chaired one of the ILEA's boards on tertiary education from 1985 until his death. A friend later recalled his last years: "I remember him, a sad old man living alone and forgotten in a small flat."
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