Charles Wood, 2nd Earl of Halifax

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About Charles Wood, 2nd Earl of Halifax,_2nd_Earl_of_Halifax

Charles Ingram Courtenay Wood, 2nd Earl of Halifax (3 October 1912 – 19 March 1980), styled Lord Irwin between 1944 and 1959, was a British politician and peer.


Wood was the son of E. F. L. Wood, 1st Earl of Halifax, statesman and Foreign Secretary.


He was educated at Eton College, Windsor and graduated from Christ Church, Oxford University, with a BA in 1934. He successfully captained the Oxford University Polo Team in 1934. He gained the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in 1934 in the service of the Royal Horse Guards.

Political career

Wood also entered politics, becoming Member of Parliament (MP) for the City of York in 1937, as a Conservative. In 1939, at the outbreak of World War II, Wood rejoined the Royal Horse Guards and served for three years in the Middle East. He continued as a Member of Parliament during this time. At the 1945 general election, he lost his seat to the Labour candidate, Dr John Corlett.


In 1936, he married Ruth, daughter of the Liberal politician Neil Primrose, and the granddaughter of Prime Minister Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery. Wood succeeded his father as 2nd Earl of Halifax in 1959. In 1978, his horse Shirley Heights won the Epsom Derby.

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