Local Heroes - Rupert and Gwendolen Guinness

Rupert Guinness, 2nd Earl of Iveagh, led a life that was dedicated to proving that 'Guinness is good for you'. Sláinte!

In 1905 the Hon. Rupert Guinness (Viscount Elveden) bought land that had formerly been part of Woking Park from his father-in-law, the 4th Earl of Onslow of Clandon Park, and created Pyrford Court, designed by Clyde Young.

Rupert was interested in medical research, and in 1921 he became chairman of the Wright-Fleming Institute of Microbiology. On the suggestion of Sir Alexander Fleming he installed a pollenarium at Pyrford Court, to study the effects of hay fever and possible cures.

After visiting Canada in 1910 Rupert bought Woking Park Farm in order to set up an emigration training farm for prospective emigrants to be trained for the conditions that would await them on arriving in Canada. By 1914 over 200 men and women had been trained.

Lady Iveagh died at Pyrford in 1966, and Lord Iveagh soon after in 1967.

Learn more about the Guinnesses at our Local Heroes display in  Woking's Story.


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