Sir Robert Peel, Sixth Baronet - 1920 -1942

Sir Robert Peel, sixth baronet was the last of the Tamworth line. He never lived at Drayton Manor, although he did visit occasionally, staying with old servants of the estate. His home was in London where he lived with his grandmother in St. John’s Wood. With the start of World War II, he left the Royal College, Dartmouth early for he had joined the Navy to go to sea.

In 1942 he was on the ship H.M.S. Tenedos in Columbo Harbour, Ceylon. On the morning of Easter Sunday, 5th April 1942, Japanese bombers flew through the flimsy air defences of Columbo Harbour where the naval destroyer was anchored. The Tenedos took a direct hit from a 500 pound bomb and sank. Ordinary Seaman, Sir Robert Peel was one of 33 Royal Navy men who died during the raid. Although enrolled for an officers training course at Dartmouth, he had preferred to get into the action and at the moment of the raid, was among volunteers carrying ammunition from below decks to the stern guns.

Sir Robert with his mother Beatrice Lillie

On his death the line of the eldest son from the first Baronet failed and the title was inherited by his second cousin once removed, the second Earl Peel, who became the seventh Baronet. Sir Robert left probate effects of £150,889.

Kanatte Commonwealth War Grave Cemetery, Colombo, Ceylon. (present-day Sri Lanka)

Plot 6B, Row N - Joint Grave 4A