Lord Portsea

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Lord Portsea, from a portrait by Moussa Ayoub, which hangs in Jersey's Royal Courthouse

Bertram Godfray Falle, 1st Baron Portsea (21 November 1859 - 1 November 1948)

Lord Portsea, known as Sir Bertram Falle between 1916 and 1930, was a Jersey-born barrister and politician in the United Kingdom.

Background and education

Falle was the son of Joshua George Falle (1820-1903), Constable of Saint Helier and later Jurat of the Royal Court, and Mary Elizabeth (née Godfray ( -1917). He was educated at Victoria College and graduated in 1886 from Pembroke College, Cambridge with a Master of Law degree, having been called to the bar, Inner Temple, in 1885. In 1901 he graduated from the University of Paris with a Bachelor en droit degree.

Legal and political career

Falle was a Judge of the Native Court in Egypt from 1901 to 1903. Standing as a Liberal Unionist, he was elected as one of the two Members of Parliament for the Portsmouth constituency at the January 1910 general election. He joined the Conservative Party when the two parties formally merged in 1912, although the Liberal Unionists had long been indistinguishable from the Conservatives. During the First World War he served in the Royal Field Artillery, gaining the rank of Major. When the Portsmouth constituency was abolished for the 1918 general election, he was returned as a Coalition Conservative for the new single-seat Portsmouth North constituency.

Re-elected as a Conservative in 1922, he held the seat until his elevation to the peerage in 1934. Falle was made a Baronet, of Plaisance in the Island of Jersey, on 7 July 1916. In 1934 he was raised to the peerage as Baron Portsea, of Portsmouth in the County of Southampton.

Personal life

Lord Portsea married Mary, daughter of Russell Sturgis and widow of Leopold Richard Seymour, in 1906. There were no children from the marriage. Mary died in February 1942. Lord Portsea survived her by six years and died in November 1948, aged 88. The baronetcy and barony became extinct on his death. In accordance with his wishes, his sister Albina (who died in 1957) made a bequest to the States of Jersey which became the Lord Portsea Gift Fund. The fund assists people from the Channel Islands who are unable to obtain sufficient financial support for additional training, re-training or specialised equipment in order to benefit their careers in the employment of the States of Jersey or of Guernsey, or of the United Kingdom.


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