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  • ID: I2159
  • Name: Robert Cecil GORDON-CANNING
  • Suffix: MC. Cpt. MC. Cpt. 1
  • Reference Number: 2162
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: 24 JUN 1888 1
  • Death: 4 JAN 1967 1
  • Note: 2

    Capt Robert Cecil Gordon-Canning, M.C., son of William James G-C ofHartpury House, Gloucester (d1929)
    Born 1888
    Educated at Eton,
    Lieut in the R Gloucester Hussars, 1906-8; 10th Royal Hussars 1908.
    Served in Great War 1914-19;
    Captain 1915,
    Res. of Officers 1919-25.
    Bucks Club; 23 Cork St W1. and Hartpury Hill House, Glouceste. andSandwich Bay, Kent.
    [1936 Who's Who]

    The Manor of Hartpury

    The Manor of Hartpury was given by Offa, King of Mercia, to the Abbey ofGloucester in about 760 AD. The Benedictines o f Gloucester were grantedthe manor in about 1022 AD and after the Norman conquest wereresponsible for the church. By th e end of the 16th century, they hadestablished a mansion, known as Abbots Court, or Place, near St MarysChurch as a cou ntry residence for the Abbots of Gloucester.

    At the dissolution of the monasteries, the manor passed to Sir WilliamHerbert KG, before being acquired in 1551 by Walt er Compton, a clothierof Chalford, and his descendants seem to have made the Court their mainresidence until the middl e of the 18th century. The Compton baronetcywas created in 1686 and became extinct in 1773 due to a lack of maleheirs . The estates (and lordship of the manor) passed through the femaleline for two generations to the last blood descenden t of the Comptons -Catherine Berkeley.

    Catherine married Robert Canning, of an ancient Roman Catholic familyseated at Foxcote in Warwickshire, and they buil t the new residence ofNew Court House, now Hartpury House, at Three Ashes Farm, to replace aQueen Anne farmhouse. The y had no children but Robert remarried and hadtwo daughters of whom the older, Maria, married Patrick Robert Gordon, ac aptain in the 78th Highlanders, who assumed the arms and additionalname of Canning to become Gordon Canning. Followin g his death in 1893,the estate passed to the oldest son, Robert, who sought to sell it off.The estate was bought by hi s brother William with his wife Clara.

    The estate, including many of the local farms and properties, was soldoff in 1919 but Hartpury House and its grounds we nt to William's sister,Mary, the widow of James Gwynne Holford of Buckland, Bwlch. Finally, onher death in 1947, the re sidual estate was purchased by GloucestershireCounty Council and evolved into the present Hartpury College.

    [http://www.hartpuryparish.org.uk/historical.htm]

    Robert is also thought to be a descendant of George Canning (1770-1827),British statesman, Prime Minister of Great Brit ain and Ireland (1827)
    +++ Robert Gordon-Canning and the British Fascists Movement +++

    Robert Gordon-Canning served in was the middle east during World War 1and because of this he became an active Arabist a fter the war, as wellas a member of the fascist party of Sir Oswald Mosley

    The great hope for British fascism in the 1930s was the movement led bySir Oswald Mosley, a charismatic baronet wit h a chequered history (hehad become a Tory MP in 1918, an Independent MP in 1922 and a Labour MPin 1926).

    Although Mosley, "the aristocratic coxcomb" (as Leon Trotsky aptlydescribed him), was mistrusted in the Labour Party, h e rose rapidly. Asa minister in the second Labour government (from 1929) he proposedradical measures, encompassing prot ectionism and Keynesian"demand-management", to solve the rapidly worsening unemployment crisis.When the government reje cted the "Mosley Memorandum" in 1930 he resignedhis post, and after issuing the "Mosley Manifesto" left the LabourParty , in 1931, to form the New Party as a challenge to the discredited"old gang" of the established parties.

    The New Party was clearly proto-fascist. Mosley's plan for economicrecovery proposed government by a Cabinet of "five d ictators" and theparty had squads of thugs, known as Mosley's "biff boys". John Stracheyand other socialist recruits t o the Party soon jumped ship, havingdetected what one called the "cloven hoof" of fascism. Following theparty's humilia tion at the October 1931 general election, any lingeringdoubts about Mosley's political trajectory were cleared up by h is"fact-finding" visit to Italy (in January 1932) and his movement'ssubsequent absorption of Francis Hawkins's factio n of the BF.

    On 1 October 1932 the New Party's successor, the British Union ofFascists (BUF), was formally inaugurated, ostensibly a s an attempt tounify all British fascist groups (although BUF members were soonaddressing the IFL and other rival facti ons in the "fraternal" languageof truncheons and knuckledusters). From the outset the BUF affected aparamilitary style , with ranks, Blackshirt uniforms, stiff-armed "Roman"salutes and (from 1933) a barracks-style headquarters - the Blac k Housein Chelsea. A Women's Section, a Fascist Union of British Workers(FUBW), a Blackshirt Automobile Club and even f ascist flying clubs wereestablished. Rather more enigmatic was the BUF's shadowy "Z Department",headed by "P G Taylor " (who was actually an MI5 agent named JamesMcGuirk Hughes).

    BUF thinking was expounded by Mosley (the "Leader"), and the likes of WE D Allen, A K Chesterton and Alexander Raven Th omson, in books andparty journals (in the early years Blackshirt and Fascist Week). TheBUF's programme was a variant o f the Italian "Corporate State" idea. Itsideology was a typically fascist blend of nationalism, quasi-mysticalromantici sm and rhetoric about "modernisation".

    Prize recruits in the early years included John Beckett (of theIndependent Labour Party), Major-General J F C Fuller an d Captain RobertGordon-Canning. Discreet links with businessmen and other influentialpeople were forged through the "Ja nuary Club". From early 1934favourable publicity courtesy of Lord Rothermere, the owner of the DailyMail (which proclai med "Hurrah for the Blackshirts!" in January 1934),did much to swell BUF ranks and by August 1934 membership had reache d50,000.

    From spring 1933, following Hitler's rise to power and a shift inCommunist policy, organised anti-fascism began to gro w in Britain. Aturning point was the BUF's June 1934 rally at London's Olympia, whenfascist stewards brutally beat heck lers. At Hyde Park in September 1934,anti-fascists got the better of the Blackshirts, a pattern often to berepeated. Un fortunately, this has led some "revisionist" historians toendorse the fascists' spurious complaint that they were the i nnocentvictims of "red terrorism".

    The Olympia rally brought widespread condemnation of the BUF. Shortlyafterwards, Rothermere withdrew his support and wa s accused by Mosley ofbowing to threats by Jewish businessmen to remove advertising from hisnewspapers. In speeches a t Manchester and London's Albert Hall inSeptember and October 1934 Mosley avowed himself an antisemite(precipitating th e resignation of his deputy, Robert Forgan).

    The fascists, and the "revisionists", maintain that Jews picked onMosley first and he merely responded. In addition, th e rival fascistleader, Leese, mocked Mosley, the "kosher fascist", and his "BritishJewnion of Fascists" for their lac k of thoroughgoing antisemitism. Butthe BUF always contained dyed-in-the-wool Jew-baiters, not least WilliamJoyce (form erly of the BF), who became Head of Propaganda. And the pullexerted by Nazism was clear: in 1933 the BUF had banned Jew s frommembership, called Jewish refugees from Germany "unwanted aliens" andwarned British Jews not to campaign agains t Hitler. If Jews did "pickon" the BUF it was only because they could see the very real threat itposed.

    According to Mosley's sister-in-law, he argued "that a dynamic creedsuch as Fascism cannot flourish unless it has a sca pegoat to hit out at,such as Jewry". Given this, and the circumstances of 1934, the turn toantisemitism looks like a cy nical manoeuvre intended to restore theBUF's flagging fortunes.

    Without Rothermere's support, BUF membership went into free-fall and themovement was forced to relinquish the Black Hou se in favour of moremodest headquarters at Sanctuary Buildings in Westminster. We now knowthat the movement's problem s were exacerbated by the temporarywithdrawal in early 1935 of the huge financial subsidy that it had beenreceiving fro m Mussolini since June 1933 (a source of income about whichMosley consistently lied). The price paid for the restoratio n of thesubsidy was the BUF's "Mind Britain's Business" campaign, in support ofthe Italian invasion of Abyssinia. This , predictably, flopped and theBUF remained at a low ebb. By October 1935 it had just 5,000 members. Itfailed to contes t the November 1935 general election, instead advancingthe vacuous slogan "Fascism Next Time".

    During 1935-36 the greatly diminished BUF underwent a series oforganisational changes. Local structures were strengthen ed and themovement concentrated its energies on a series of localised campaigns(although there were national campaigns , notably an intervention in the1936 abdication crisis under the slogan "Stand by the King"). Industrialrecruitment dri ves were organised in various regions, most notably amongworkers in Lancashire's hard-hit cotton industry (the FUBW wa s abandonedin favour of infiltrating existing unions). In East Anglia the BUFcampaigned among farmers resisting the pay ment of tithes to the church.

    The BUF's most successful localised campaign was waged in the East Endof London. In the midst of Britain's biggest Jewi sh community the BUFplayed up its antisemitism, recruiting thugs and bigots such as theinfamous "Mick" Clarke. By Novem ber 1936 national BUF membership stoodat 15,500; perhaps as many as half of these members were in EastLondon.

    However, anti-fascists were determined that the Blackshirts would bedenied control of the East End's streets. At the Ba ttle of Cable Street,on 4 October 1936, a quarter of a million anti-fascists thronged thearea in opposition to a planne d march by 7,000 BUF supporters. Thepolice were unable to force the march through and the BUF was obliged tocall it off . Subsequently, the 1936 Public Order Act was passed,outlawing political uniforms and giving the authorities the powe r to bandemonstrations.

    At local council elections in 1937 the BUF stood in several parts of thecountry but did not win a single seat. Althoug h at the London CountyCouncil elections the fascists polled significantly in the East End,their failure to get electe d was a bitter blow. Unimpressed, Mussoliniwithdrew the BUF's subsidy for good. Substantial cuts in the BUFapparatus fo llowed, including a reduction in the size of itsheadquarters and the redundancy of many full-time officials. Simmeringa ntagonisms among the leadership came to a head, and Joyce and Beckettabandoned Mosley ("the Bleeder") to form the minus cule NationalSocialist League.

    Even before the loss of Italian money the BUF was showing signs ofincreasing affinity with the Nazis. In 1936 the movem ent was renamed the"British Union of Fascists and National Socialists", although membersnow invariably referred to it a s the "British Union" (apparentlyrecognising that association with fascism and Nazism was a politicalliability). At th e end of 1936 the theoretical Fascist Quarterly becamethe British Union Quarterly. The movement also changed its symbol ,dropping the Italian fasces for a swastika-like lightning-flash in acircle, intended to symbolise "action in unity" (a nti-fascists jokinglydubbed it the "flash in the pan"). And there was an SS-style uniform forsellers of the new BUF pap er Action.

    Mosley made several low-profile visits to Germany and in October 1936married his second wife, Diana Guinness, in Berli n with Goebbels andHitler in attendance. His new wife was herself an enthusiasticGermanophile whose sister, Unity Mitfo rd, was a notorious hanger-on ofHitler. Mosley even had plans to establish a commercial radio stationbroadcasting fro m Germany. It seems highly likely that German moneyfound its way to the BUF.

    In the late 1930s several associated pro-German and pro-appeasementgroups emerged (notably the Nordic League, the Link , the Right Club andthe British People's Party); current and past members of the BUF wereconnected with these circles.

    During 1938-39 the BUF campaigned energetically for peace with Hitlerunder the slogans "Britons fight for Britain only " and "Mosley andPeace". In July 1939 Mosley addressed a "peace" rally of some 20,000 atLondon's Exhibition Hall in Ear l's Court. This campaign brought newmembers (older and more middle-class than previous recruits), withmembership reachi ng 16,500 in December 1938 and 22,500 in September1939. Yet, despite this belated upturn in its fortunes, the BUF remai nedsmall and isolated.

    With hindsight the failure of British fascism in the 1930s wasinevitable. Britain's inter-war economic and social crisi s was realenough, but its dimensions were very different from those of the crisesexperienced in continental Europe. Alt hough some parts of the UnitedKingdom suffered appallingly from the effects of long-term economicdecline, others saw th e growth of new industries and new prosperity.Britain's unemployment problem was significantly less acute than that inm ainland Europe and, despite the many faults of Britain's benefitsystem, it was enough to ensure that the unemployed wer e not thepolitical tinder they became elsewhere.

    To many people, Mosley was simply "a cad and a wrong 'un" (to quoteStanley Baldwin) who had put himself "beyond the pal e", and whosemovement seemed more ludicrous than dangerous. In P G Wodehouse's 1938satire about "Roderick Spode", Leade r of the "Black Shorts", BertieWooster tells Spode: "because you have succeeded in inducing a handfulof halfwits to dis figure the London scene by going about in blackshorts, you think you're someone. You hear them shouting 'Heil, Spode!'a nd you imagine it is the Voice of the People. That is where you makeyour bloomer. What the Voice of the People is sayin g is: 'Look at thatfrightful ass Spode swanking about in footer bags! Did you ever in yourpuff see such a perfect peris her?'"

    Yet for those who were in physical danger from BUF thugs the menace offascism was all too tangible, as Jewish East Ende rs could testify. Thefascists threatened to poison the political atmosphere in Britain bypushing onto the mainstream po litical agenda the antisemitism that wasall too prevalent in inter-war British society. Meanwhile, elements ofthe polit ical establishment and the state seemed too often complacentabout, or even favourably disposed towards, the fascists. T hosesocialists, communists, Jews, trade unionists and others who confrontedthe fascists, physically and ideologically , in the 1930s undoubtedlyperformed an invaluable service and set an admirable example.

    [Fromhttp://www.searchlightmagazine.com/features/century/cbf.php?include=page3]

    Robert Gordon-Canning wrote several publications in his time with theBUF, including;
    "The Inward Strength of a National Socialist". London: Greater BritainPublications, n.d. [1934?].
    "The Holy Land: Arab or Jew?" London: BUF Publications, n.d. [1936?].
    "Mind Britain's Business: British Union Foreign Policy." London:Greater Britain Publications, 1938.
    [Institute for Historical Review, Journal of Historical Review, "SelectBibliography: Works on Oswald Mosley and Britis h Fascism" Compiled byKeith Stimely]

    "At a recent sale of the German Embassy's effects in London, a CaptainGordon Canning bought a bust of Hitler for £500 . We understand thatCanning is an admirer of Hitler!! And Canning we suppose will have readof the trials at Belsen an d Nuremberg. We hope the authorities arekeeping a watchful eye on all Fascists in this country.
    OBSERVER"
    [Tarleton "Rector's Weekly" WWII Newsletter, January 1946. Fromhttp://tarletonvillage.com/history/hb_newsletter/4601.h tml]

    Norman Archibald noted
    "Years ago, I was in touch with a fascist researcher in England and aGerman researcher and learnt quite a bit about Rob ert Cecil and hisinvolvement with the BUF, including a luncheon given in his honour byHitler in his Munich house, pre t he 2nd. World War."

    "The Fascist researcher I mentioned, told me the following story. WhenRobert Cecil was released from gaol, he came ou t quite insane. After thewar, he established some sort of very strange "religious" organisationin a little village in E ngland. The Fascist researcher decided one dayto do some follow up work and visit the old home where Robert Cecillive d with his followers. As he entered the confines of the village, hiscar engine cut out and refused to restart. He walke d into the villageand asked the garage owner there to pick his car up with his tow truckand tow it to the village and s ee if he could find the fault and startthe car. No matter what he tried, the mechanic could not find the fault,so the g uy asked if his car could be towed to where he lived. As theywere leaving the confines of the village, he asked the to w truck driverto stop, as he wanted to make one last attempt to start his car. Theengine started 1st. try. And the ca r never played up again until the dayhe sold it. He told me he never went back to the village again. Truestory, accordi ng to him. Stranger than fiction that one."
    +++ Robert Gordon-Canning and the Rif Revolt +++

    The Rif Revolt is one of the more astonishing bids forself-determination by a people bearing the yoke of colonialism. T hat itfailed to achieve its primary aim, is a matter of history that passesover numerous achievements of the leaders o f the revolt. However,despite the importance of the Revolt in its own time, this slice ofhistory probably appears in fe w modern history texts.

    The Rif Revolt occurred between 1921 and 1926 in northern Morocco. Thecolonial power involved in the war was Spain an d the people seekingself-determination were the Rifi and Jibala tribes of northern Morocco.

    The Rif was populated by many tribes who generally acted only in theirown interests. There were rarely any agreements b inding the tribes,apart from occasional alliances, while inter-tribal disturbancescontinued at irregular intervals. Wit hout a unified front, thefragmented opposition to the Spanish caused little threat to thecolonial power; although the d islike for the Spanish fermented amongstall tribes. One of the larger tribes in the Rif was the Aith Waryagher,locate d in the east of the Spanish Zone. It was from this tribe thatsignificant opposition to the Spanish finally arose wit h dramaticconsequences. The man who led the opposition was Si Muhammad n-Si Abdal-Krim al-Khatabi or, as he is more com monly known, Abdel Krim (whichis actually his fathers name).

    Abdel Krim was of the son of a qadi (a Judge of Islamic law) of the theAith Waryagher. His father had developed relatio nships with the miningcompanies seeking to exploit the iron deposits in the Rif and he hadmanaged to obtain a good educ ation for his son. A better education wasobtained for his second son, Mhommad, who became the first Rifi tostudy at Uni versity, undertaking a course in Madrid with the object ofbecoming a mining engineer.


    The Spanish were well aware of the discontent amongst the nativepopulation and the efforts of the Aith Waryagher to org anize resistanceagainst them. As well as continuing to assert their authority over thepopulation, the Spanish attempte d to divert the feelings aroused in thelocal tribes against the French in southern Morocco. In 1921 theSpanish, throug h the representations of a Spaniard named SeñorEchevarieta, attempted to take possession of strategic points aroundAlhu cemas Bay by offering to pay Abdel Krim 20 million pesetas. As wellas offering money, the Spanish proposed to supply mo dern armaments forthe native population to prosecute a military campaign against theFrench. This approach was rejected , as Abdel Krim saw the Spanish as thegreater enemy of the Rif and he refused to be drawn into a conflict withthe Frenc h.

    After suffering the domination of the Spanish for many years, due toinsufficient strength to oppose them, Abdel Krim de cided that by May1921 he had developed enough power to test the Spanish. The chosen pointto attack the Spanish was th e strategic post of Dar Abara (or Abaran) inTensamane country. With three hundred warriors, Abdel Krim attacked thefort ified Spanish position and after a tough battle the Spanish weredefeated. The Spanish lost three to four hundred men, w hile the Rifianslost only eight or nine men. Although the victory was in itselfstunning, the weapons, munitions and sup plies captured by Abdel Krimallowed the Rifi to seriously consider widening their campaign.

    In the years following the defeat of the Spanish at Anoual, manyEuropeans, particularly the French, believed that the v ictories won bythe Rifi were due to their forces being led by skilled Europeans,possibly Germans. When the revolt was o ver, the same Europeans weresurprised to discover that while some Europeans were fighting with theRifi, the army was le d by the Rifi and Jibala tribesmen. Abdel Krimhimself was in command at the battles of Dar Abara and Anoual.

    Abdel Krim was declared the Emir of the Rif on 1 February 1922, althougha declaration of independence had been made i n 1921. A government wasestablished, with ministers of state, and Ajdir was declared the capitalof the Rif Republic. Wi thin the Rif the authority of Abdel Krim broughta number of changes which altered aspects of local culture forever. For example, he outlawed blood feuds, which had debilitated the region foryears. Justice was now meted out by the authorit y of the Government. Hisreforms of the justice system included the implementation of Shariá lawand the abandoning o f a peculiarly Berber form of justice that includedthe use of collective oaths. Tribal allegiances were also reformed , sothat allegiances were made directly to the Government.

    In an effort to establish a government that would be recognisedinternationally, Abdel Krim sent emissaries to France an d Britain. In1922 Abdel Krim visited London with several associates. His objectivewas to enter into talks with Mr. Aust en Chamberlain, the British ForeignSecretary, but he was not received by Mr. Chamberlain or by any membersof the Britis h Government. While the Rifians found many peoplesympathetic to their cause in London, the visit did not achieve thedip lomatic assistance they were seeking.

    One of the men closely associated with the Rif Revolt in its early yearswas Captain Charles Alfred Paroy Gardiner, some times known as Percy of Finance had rejected the request.)

    Gardiner first comes to notice in the drama of the Rif revolt in March1923. At that time the Spanish embassy in Londo n wrote to the Britishauthorities, noting that the brother of the Riffi rebel chief,Abd-el-Krim, has arrived in Paris , where he poses as an Algerian.Accompanying Abdel Krims brother Mhommad was a Mr. Percy Gardiner.The communique from t he Spanish embassy requested details about CaptainGardiner, whom they suspected was smuggling arms to the Rif.

    That Gardiner was involved in smuggling arms to the Rif is certain. Hisactivities, suspected by both the Spanish and Br itish, were confirmed byAbdel Krim after the war. Gardiner was also known by the Britishauthorities to have purchased a rms for Greece some time before his focusshifted to northern Morocco. During his involvement with the Rif Revolt,Gardin er was reported to be associated with a Herr Hacklander´who wasconnected to the German mining company Mannesmann. Hackl ander in turnwas a known arms dealer, having supplied arms for Serbian forcesfighting against the Bulgarians.

    How Gardiner made contact with Abdel Krim is unknown, althoughGardiners meeting with Si Mhammed in Paris is his first k nown contactwith the Rifi. Si Mhammed later reported that, while in Paris, Gardinerconcluded a deal to supply weapons a t a price that Si Mhammedconsidered rather high. However, Gardiner appears to have established arelationship that was b eneficial to both parties, with Gardiner becominga confidant of Abdel Krim.

    In May 1923 Gardiner successfully acquired concessions from the Rifison behalf of a syndicate, of which he was a co-dir ector, inconsideration of a loan to the Rifi. The negotiations appear to havebeen completed with Si Mhammed during hi s sojourn in Paris, as theRifian signatory to the contract for the concessions was the HereditaryVice-President of th e Riffian Republic. According to a later report inthe New York Times, for £300,000 Gardiner acquired the rights toestab lish a bank of emission at Adjdir, all rights for the developmentof the oil, coal, gold, silver and copper resources o f the country,besides concessions with regard to telegraph, postal, railroad andseaport exploitations.´He also secure d the rights for organizingschools, technical colleges, theatres, moving-picture palaces, operasand tramway and omnibu s lines. Considering there were no trams in theSpanish Zone and no opera houses, the concessions ring a little hollow.P erhaps the scope of the concessions indicate the ambitions of the Rifior, alternatively, the pretensions of Gardiner.

    In early August 1923 Captain Gardiner was representing himself asAgent General for the Riff Government. By late Augus t he had adoptedthe title Minister Plenipotentiary for the Government of the Riff´andhis letter-head used in correspond ence read The Agent-General for theGovernment of the Riff (Morocco). In his new-found capacity he invitedthe British Go vernment to establish a Diplomatic and Consular service the world, but it would seem that allinvitations were treated w ith the same disregard.

    While Captain Gardiner and Lord Teynham continued to break no Britishlaws (as none of the smuggled arms and munitions l eft from a Britishport), there was nothing the British could do to curb their activities.A report on the Activities o f Captain Gardiner in the Riff, written inDecember 1924 by the British Foreign Office, describes Gardiner, LordTeynha m and their associates as undesirable people´and while they mayhave caused some embarrassment to the British Governmen t by theirnefarious operations, they were left to their own devices and tosuffer the consequences of their own actions . (These consequences´wereregarded with some optimism by the British, as the Foreign Office reportconcludes: Obviousl y it is up to the Spaniards to catch him; but heneed not fear much from that quarter.)

    By the time the Foreign Office report was written, Gardiner seems tohave ceased his activities in northern Morocco. Th e concessions grantedto Gardiner in June 1923 may have been wide and far-reaching, but theyalso had to be paid for. I t appears that Gardiner and Lord Teynham couldnot finance their enterprise, despite efforts in approaching severalfinan ciers. By July 1924 the relationship between Gardiner and the Rifihad all but ended. The New York Times reported on 2 0 July 1924 that theRifis had lodged papers in French courts suing Gardiner for breach ofcontract. Gardiner had evident ly failed to lodge the first installmentof £10,000 with the Rifi and, seeing little other option, they hadcommenced leg al proceedings against the Englishman.

    It is probable that the legal proceedings went no further. However, bythis time the association between Gardiner and Ha cklander had ended,leaving Hacklander owed a sum of money by Abdel Krim, while Gardinerdisappeared from the scene. In 1 926 Hacklander was identified as asponsor of another Englishman, Captain Robert Gordon-Canning.Gordon-Canning had suppo rted the Rifi by organizing an advocate group inBritain and by making numerous visits to the Rif. At various stages hea ttempted to represent Abdel Krim in France, for the purpose ofnegotiating independence for the Rif. (It is probable tha tGordon-Canning was the direct successor to Captain Gardiner, in the roleof official representative of the Government o f the Rif in GreatBritain, following the latters fall from grace.)

    It also appears that, although the agreement with Captain Gardinerfailed, the quest to obtain concessions in the Rif co ntinued for manyyears. One of the strongest competitors for the concessions was SeñorEchevarieta, who had previously ne gotiated with Abdel Krim on behalf ofthe Spanish Government and who represented Spanish interests innegotiations for th e concessions. Other approaches for concessions inthe Rif came from French interests. However, it seems that all furthe rattempts to acquire concessions by various parties came to nothing.

    In recollecting the various foreigners who assisted him in hisendeavours to establish the Rif Republic, Abdel Krim spea ks favourablyof Gordon-Canning and Hacklander. He believed that each of thesegentlemen had no ulterior motives to thei r support of his cause,although evidence may occasionally suggest otherwise. Of Gardiner, herecalled only that the Engl ishman offered him the world´inconsideration for a foreign loan, as well as all manner of modernarmaments and munition s for him to prosecute the war. Whether Abdel Krimever believed that Gardiner was going to deliver the world´he offered through the purchase of the concessions is difficult to know, as thissubject seems to be passed over in his Mémoires.

    [From: "The Notes of the Rif Revolt" by Peter Symes. First published inthe International Bank Note Society Journal Volu me 41, No.3, 2002]
    +++ The British Fascists and Hollywood +++
    The British fascists harboured an ambivalent attitude to Americancinema. The Hollywood movie was sometimes represente d by fascistwriters, as a
    symptom of encroaching decadence. As a senior BUF official, RobertGordon-Canning wrote disapprovingly of Hollywood film s, which " ...appeal to the cruder sex emotion of the audience and whose narrativecontent contained barely concealed id eas bordering on the pornographic."[Thomas Linehan, "A Dangerous Piece of Celluloid"? British Fascists andthe Hollywoo d Movie, quoting Robert Gordon-Canning from "The FascistWeek", 20-26 April 1934.]
    Security records released by the British National Archives on 25-26November 2002 contain several references to Robert G ordon-Canning.

    The records include some from MI5. The majority of files are from1939-45 but there are a considerable number from the i nter-war period,dealing with a range of groups including German espionage, right-wingextremists (such as British Unio n of Fascists or BUF), RussianCommunists and the Communist Party of Great Britain (CPGB), andCommunist intelligence cov er organizations such as ARCOS, the FederatedPress of America and ROSTA, or TASS, the Russian Telegraph Service.

    Records released include;

    "Captain Robert Cecil Gordon Canning (KV 2/877-878) Canning, a captainin the Royal Hussars during World War I, was th e great grandson of thepoet Lord Byron. In 1934 Canning joined the British Union of Fascists(BUF), became a close assoc iate of Mosley and met senior Nazi officials.In 1938 he broke with Mosley on personal grounds, becoming the treasurero f the anti-war group, the British Council for Christian Settlement. Hewas detained under 18b of the Defence Regulation s until 1943."

    PostIt on WorldConnect on 26 Feb 2012:
    ?My great grandfather worked as a carpenter at Hartpury house and was given some Devil Candlesticks that had belonged t o a member of the Canning family and was told that they had been used in some kind of devil worship.
    They have been passed down through the family until they got to me, they are the most evil things and never get put o n show, and through all the generations they were hidden away, even the canning family kept them in a drawer.? [Keithvm x (at) hotmail.com]

    ?I would also like to know what became of the Hitler bust he bought in 1945. You can still see the sale on Pathe News , but it has been edited down now. When I first watched the film many years ago there was a interview with Robert afte r he bought it. I did wonder if he, or member's of the family, got it taken out. I have also seen the MI5 file on him . I was also interested in the Arnold article about him and how the car broke down when it went to the village. Our fam ily was told when we were given the Devil Candlestick's that they had been used in witchcraft and had been used at th e Hellfire club, but that is not possible as the Hellfire club was many year's before. ... As you say the Gordon-Cannin g family are a very interesting family as was Robert's friend Captain Buck who started Buck's club in Mayfair,he also i nvented the drink Buck's Fizz.?
    [Email of 26 Feb 2012 from Keith Smart]Page: Email: 24 September 2005
  • _UID: B90B03B519954EAAB7BD34D8AD657C2D5D84
  • Change Date: 4 MAR 2012



    Father: William James GORDON-CANNING

    Marriage 1 Ellen Theresa MAGUIRE b: 22 FEB 1919 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
    • Married: 10 AUG 1939
    • Note: Norman Archibald believes that only Mick attended Mary`s marriage toGordon-Canning in London 1 3
    Children
    1. Has No Children Michael C GORDON-CANNING b: 3 FEB 1941

    Sources:
    1. Title: Norman Archibald
      Page: Notes: 24 June 2005
    2. Title: Norman Archibald
    3. Title: Norman Archibald
      Page: Email: 24 September 2005
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