Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520, Stati Uniti
Eton College, Windsor SL4 6DW, Regno Unito
Royal Agricultural College, Stroud Rd, Cirencester GL7 6JS, Regno Unito
Lord Frederick William Charles Nicholas Wentworth Hervey (26 November 1961 – 26 January 1998)[a] was a British aristocrat and political activist. He was the only child born to the 6th Marquess of Bristol and his second wife, Lady Juliet Wentworth-FitzWilliam, and was heir presumptive to the Marquessate. At Yale University, Hervey founded the Rockingham Club, a society for the upper class royalty and aristocracy. He had clinical depression as an adult and committed suicide in 1998.
Hervey's mother was the only child of the wealthy 8th Earl Fitzwilliam; she was 13 years old when her father died in a small aircraft crash that also killed his intended second wife, Kathleen Cavendish, Marchioness of Hartington, sister of John F. Kennedy, in 1948. Lady Juliet was the sole heir to her father's estate, then estimated at £45 million. As an adult, she ran a family stud farm.
Hervey's parents married in 1960, his father for the second time, his mother for the first. He was the only child of that marriage. His father was Victor Hervey, 6th Marquess of Bristol, who also had significant inherited wealth, some of which he invested into new enterprises. He was once tagged "Mayfair's No. 1 Playboy," in a series of "life story" articles he wrote after serving a gaol sentence for jewel robbery, a crime he claimed he had committed for a dare.
Hervey was the second heir to the title and estates of the Marquess of Bristol after his elder half-brother John, the 7th Marquess, the only child of his father's first marriage. Nicholas and John were fond of one another. When Nicholas was eleven years old, his mother divorced his father and married his 60-year-old friend, Somerset de Chair (d. 1996), with whom five years later she had a daughter, Helena de Chair. In 1996, his mother married for a third time and is now known as Lady Juliet Tadgell.
Hervey's father's final marriage was to his private secretary, Yvonne Sutton, and with her had three further children, Frederick Hervey, 8th Marquess of Bristol, at whose Roman Catholic christening Hervey stood godfather, and two daughters Lady Victoria and Lady Isabella Hervey.
Nicholas was known as a keen traditionalist. He was educated at Eton, Yale and the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester. At Eton he was "an industrious boy with plenty of initiative"; he took part in the House debate, and during his last two halves (terms) was in the House Library (i.e., a prefect). He founded and was president of the Burlington Society, a fine arts society with an emphasis on modern art. He was also a member of the Agricultural and Political Societies, leaving Eton at Christmas 1979 with A-levels in French, Spanish and Economics. At Yale he took a degree in the History of Art and studied Economics in depth.
Yale University, New Haven, CT
In 1981 he founded the Rockingham Club, a Yale social club for descendants of royalty and aristocracy, which was later modified to allow membership to the children of the "super-wealthy". The Club and Nicholas Hervey were profiled in Andy Warhol's Interview magazine but was dissolved shortly thereafter in 1986. (Nicholas' older half-brother John was posthumously reported to be a friend of Andy Warhol.) He was a member, through his mother, of the Turf Club, a gentlemen's club in Carlton House Terrace in central London connected to horse racing. His sister Helena attended Bristol University.
He was a leading member of the International Monarchist League. He was elected President of its International Youth Association (under 21s) in February 1979 and recruited numerous new members. In 1985 he became a Vice-Chancellor of the League proper, and made the formal toast to the guests, The Prince and Princess of Lippe, at the League's Annual Dinner in the Cholmondeley Room, the House of Lords, on 1 April 1986. In later years he allowed his membership and vice-chancellorship to lapse.
Through the League, which his father had subsidised for many years, he became friendly with Gregory Lauder-Frost, who introduced him to numerous right-wing conservative activities. One such event, on 25 September 1989, was the Western Goals Institute dinner at Simpson's-in-the-Strand, chaired by Lord Sudeley, for the President of El Salvador, Alfredo Cristiani, and his inner cabinet.
In 1983, Lord Nicholas was diagnosed as with mild schizophrenia which was treated with medication. In 1986, he graduated from Yale University and, in 1991, voluntarily underwent treatment in a clinic.
In 1991, he was forced to declare bankruptcy due to lawyers' debts of £38,000 (which his trustees refused to fund), following the failure of the lawsuit, he and his elder half-brother brought against the principal beneficiaries of the will of their father, i.e., his third wife and their young children. His own mother, while on the Sunday Times Rich List (in 2003 her wealth was estimated at £45,000,000), did not act to prevent the bankruptcy, which immediately preceded his entry into a clinic. She subsequently declared that "he was never himself again" after the clinic stay.
He had severe depression and became increasingly reclusive. His landlady said that he "drew no shred of comfort from the high rank and great riches to which he was born" and that "he was a recluse, in the sense that he was heavily sedated and slept all day – a typical schizophrenic. He was very quiet, very Old Etonian. He was a nice guy, but very 'out of it'. Nobody visited him here, except sometimes we would hear someone come and take him out to dinner."
Lord Nicholas Hervey was found dead in his Chelsea flat on 26 January 1998 at the age of 36, having hanged himself. He never married and had no children.
His half-brother, John Hervey, 7th Marquess of Bristol, died less than a year later.