Forbes, Walter (DNB00)

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FORBES, WALTER, eighteenth Lord Forbes (1798–1868), second but eldest surviving son of James Ochoncar, seventeenth lord [q. v.], by Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Walter Hunter, esq., of Polmood, Peeblesshire, and Crailing, Roxburghshire, was born at Crailing 29 May 1798. In 1814 he joined the Coldstream guards, of which his father had been for twenty-six years an officer, and in which his elder brother, the Hon. James Forbes, was then holding a commission. He was very soon destined to see active service; for he was present with his regiment at Waterloo, being then probably one of the youngest officers in the service. But though so young, he commanded a company at the defence of Hougoumont. He was in the 3rd company as junior ensign. The captain, Sir William Gomm, was on the staff; the next senior officer, Cowell, had been taken ill the day before, and therefore absent; and the other ensign, Vane, wounded; so after that Forbes was the only officer present, and therefore he commanded. He retired from the army in 1825, having married, 31 Jan. in that year, Horatia, seventh daughter of Sir John Gregory Shaw, bart., of Eltham, Kent, by whom he had a family of seven children. He succeeded his father as eighteenth lord and premier baron of Scotland 4 May 1843.

Forbes interested himself much in church matters, and was greatly attached to the episcopal church in Scotland. He was most energetic in the origin and foundation of St. Ninian's Cathedral, Perth, and was one of its greatest benefactors. Forbes married, secondly, 4 April 1864, Louisa, daughter of James Ormond, esq., of Abingdon, by whom he left at his decease at Richmond, 1 May 1868, two sons. There is a beautiful memorial window in the guards' chapel at the Wellington Barracks, given by his widow, and also a tablet to his memory and that of his father and elder brother, by his son, the present and nineteenth Lord Forbes.

[Private family communication; Account of Royal Military Chapel, Wellington Barracks, 1882.]

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