Earl of Cranbrook, in the County of Kent, is a title in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It was created in 1892 for the prominent Conservative politician Gathorne Gathorne-Hardy, 1st Viscount Cranbrook. He notably held office as Home Secretary, Secretary of State for War and Secretary of State for India. Gathorne-Hardy had already been created Viscount Cranbrook, of Hemsted in the County of Kent, in 1878, and was made Baron Medway, of Hemsted in the County of Kent, at the same time he was given the earldom. The latter title is used as a courtesy title for the Earl's eldest son and heir apparent. Lord Cranbrook's eldest son, the second Earl, represented Rye, Mid Kent and Medway in the House of Commons as a Conservative. As of 2010 the titles are held by the latter's great-grandson, the fifth Earl, who succeeded his father in 1978. He is a zoologist and environmental biologist, who was awarded the Royal Geographical Society's Founder's Gold Medal in 1995.
John David Gathorne-Hardy, 4th Earl of Cranbrook (who was previously married to Bridget D’Oyly Carte). 2nd Marriage to Fidelity (4), (born in 1912, JP), married on 26 July 1932 and had five children: Gathorne, 5th Earl of Cranbrook, 1933- Hugh 1941- Juliet 1934- (Catherine) Sophia 1936- Christina 1940-
Hon. Alfred Gathorne-Hardy, third son of the first Earl, sat as a Member of Parliament for Canterbury and East Grinstead. Another member of the family is the writer Jonathan Gathorne-Hardy. He is the son of Hon. Anthony Gathorne-Hardy, youngest son of the third Earl.
The family seat is Great Glemham House, near Saxmundham, Suffolk.
Earls of Cranbrook (1892)
The heir apparent is the present holder's son John Jason Gathorne-Hardy, Lord Medway (b. 1968).