Continuing my sojourn into back copies of The Coat of Arms, in a letter (Volume XII No. 86 April 1971) Patrick W. Montague-Smith, Editor, Debrett, reminds us that:
Under the Peerage Act a disclaiming peer irrevocably divests himself and his wife "of all right and interest to or in the peerage, and all titles, rights, offices and privileges and precedence attaching thereto." That the children are unaffected, retaining their precedence, was made clear in a statement issued by Garter King of Arms. The Earl Marshal, after taking the advice of Norfolk Herald Extraordinary and the Lord Lyon King of Arms, stated that they should continue to be accorded courtesy titles unless they do not wish to use them. The use of courtesy titles and styles, is, of course the Sovereign's prerogative.
Referring to Albertus Magnus' letter (Vol. No. 79, p 257) the Foreign Secretary undoubtedly ranks as a Secretary of State under Baronial Rank. His son, the former Lord Dunglass, obtained recognition at Lyon Court in his new name of D. A. C. Douglas-Home, Esq., before Garter's statement was issued, but in view of the above he retains precedence as the eldest son of an Earl.
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