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Ambassadors of the United Kingdom to the United States

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  • Hon. Peter Jay (1937 - d.)
    The Honourable Peter Jay=* British Ambassador to the* United States* In office* 1977–1979* President Jimmy Carter* Prime Minister James Callaghan* Preceded by Peter Ramsbotham* Succeeded by Nicholas He...
  • Sir Antony Acland, KG, GCMG, GCVO (1930 - 2021)
    Antony Arthur Acland KG GCMG GCVO (born 12 March 1930) is a British former diplomat and Provost of Eton College.Early lifeAntony Acland is the second son of Brigadier Peter Acland. He was educated at E...
  • Hon. Sir Ronald Charles Lindsay, GCB KCMG CVO PC (1877 - 1945)
    Ronald Charles Lindsay GCB KCMG CVO PC (3 May 1877 – 21 August 1945), was a British civil servant and diplomat. He was Ambassador to Turkey from 1925 to 1926 and to Germany from 1926 to 1928, Permanent...
  • George Rowland Stanley Baring, 3rd Earl of Cromer, KG (1918 - 1991)
    (George) Rowland Stanley Baring, 3rd Earl of Cromer, KG GCMG MBE PC (28 July 1918 – 16 March 1991), styled Viscount Errington before 1953, was a British banker and diplomat. After serving during the Se...
  • Sir Patrick Henry Dean, GCMG (1909 - 1994)
    Wikipedia contributors. " Patrick Dean ." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.Sir Patrick Henry Dean, GCMG (16 March 1909 – 5 November 1994) was Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom to the Unite...

The British Ambassador to the United States is in charge of the British Embassy, Washington, D.C., the United Kingdom's diplomatic mission to the United States. The official title is Her Majesty's Ambassador to the United States of America.

The ambassador's residence is on Massachusetts Avenue in Washington, D.C. It was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and built in 1928.


The position of ambassador to the United States is considered to be one of the most important posts in Her Majesty's Diplomatic Service, along with those of Permanent Representative to the European Union and Permanent Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The ambassador's main duty is to present British policies to the American government and people, and to report American policies and views to the Government of the United Kingdom. He serves as the primary channel of communication between the two nations, and plays an important role in treaty negotiations.

The ambassador is the head of the United Kingdom's consular service in the United States. As well as directing diplomatic activity in support of trade, he is ultimately responsible for visa services and for the provision of consular support to British citizens in America. He also oversees cultural relations between the two countries.


The first British envoy to the United States was Sir John Temple, who was appointed Consul General in 1785 and was based in New York at the estate at Richmond Hill (Manhattan) which served previously as a headquarters for George Washington.

George Hammond was appointed on 5 July 1791. He held the title of Minister in Washington or Minister to the United States of America.

In 1809, David Erskine and President James Madison negotiated a compromise to Anglo-American disputes over shipping in the Atlantic, which might have averted the War of 1812. However, the deal was rejected by King George III and the British Government recalled Erskine.

By the 1850s, the envoy's title was Her Majesty's Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to the United States of America, and the United Kingdom had consulates in several American cities. Under the direction of Sir John Crampton in 1854 and 1855, British consuls attempted to enlist American volunteers to fight in the Crimean War. The American government strenuously objected, and President Franklin Pierce asked for Crampton to be recalled. The United Kingdom refused and, in May 1856, the American government dismissed Crampton, along with the United Kingdom's consuls in New York, Philadelphia and Cincinnati. After much negotiation, the United Kingdom was allowed to re-establish its Legation in Washington the following year, and Lord Napier became the new minister.

In 1893, the British diplomatic mission in Washington was raised from a Legation to an Embassy, and Sir Julian Pauncefote, Minister since 1889, was appointed as the United Kingdom's first ambassador to the United States, with the title Her Britannic Majesty's Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the United States.

The role was offered to three former Prime Ministers: the Earl of Rosebery, David Lloyd George and Sir Edward Heath, all of whom declined.

Heads of mission


Frederick Wright-Bruce (Ambassador from 1865-1867)

Sir Frederick William Adolphus Bruce