Partner Horst P. Horst

Queer Places:
Repton School, Willington Rd, Repton, Derby DE65 6FH, UK
University Of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2, UK

'''Valentine George Nicholas Lawford''' (February 27, 1911 – June 18, 1991) was a British diplomat and long-term partner of German-american fashion photographer Horst P. Horst.

Valentine Lawford attended Repton School and Corpus Christi College, Cambridge where he read modern and mediaeval languages. He then specialized at the Sorbonne, Strasbourg and in Vienna.[4]

From 1939 to 1946 he was the private secretary of Edward Wood, 1st Earl of Halifax, Anthony Eden and Ernest Bevin, all three of them Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.

During World War II he acted as official interpreter at various conferences and war councils, and was the regular interpreter of Winston Churchill.

As part of the Britain's delegation, he took part at the Yalta Conference, Moscow Conference (1945) and Quebec Conference (1943).

From 1946 to 1949 he was the alternate British delegate to the United Nations Security Council.

From 1949 to 1950 he was Chargé d'affaires at the British Embassy in Teheran, Iran.

In the 1960s and 1970s Lawford wrote the articles on the lifestyle of international high society illustrated by Horst for ''Vogue''.[1] In 1968 ''Vogue's Book of Houses, Gardens, People'' collected most of those articles, Lawford's contribution defined as "lyrical essays". In 2016 ''Around That Time: Horst at Home in Vogue'', featured much of the material of the original book.[2]

Alone he wrote ''Bound for Diplomacy'', his autobiography published in 1963, and ''Horst, His Work & His World'' in 1984.

He also painted watercolors which were widely exhibited.

In Paris, in the 1930s, Lawford moved in a circle that included: Gertrude Stein, Duff Cooper, Sir Charles Mendl and Elsie de Wolfe, Douglas Fairbanks, the Rothschilds, the de Castellanes, the Windsors, and Nancy Cunard.

Valentine Lawford met Horst in 1938, and they remained together until Lawford's death in 1991. Their adopted son was Richard J. Horst.[3]

At the time of his death, Lawford was living in Oyster Bay Cove, New York.[5]


  1. ^ cite web|title=Horst and Valentine Lawford Gave Us an Intimate Look at How 1960s Society Lived|url=https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/around-that-time-horst-at-home-in-vogue|accessdate=22 September 2017
  2. ^ cite book|title=Around That Time: Horst at Home in Vogue|date=2016|publisher=Harry N. Abrams|url=https://books.google.it/books?id=uodyjwEACAAJ|accessdate=22 September 2017
  3. ^ cite web|title=Horst, Horst P. (1906–1999)|url=http://www.glbtq.com/arts/horst_hp,2.html|accessdate=June 17, 2006
  4. ^ cite web|title=Valentine (Nicholas) Lawford 1911 - 1991|url=http://lawfordherry.blogspot.it/2008/01/valentine-lawford-1912-1991.html|accessdate=22 September 2017
  5. ^ cite journal|title=V. G. N. Lawford, 80, Former British Envoy|journal=The New York Times|date=1991|url=https://www.nytimes.com/1991/06/21/obituaries/v-g-n-lawford-80-former-british-envoy.html|accessdate=22 September 2017