- Transferred from Banks Peninsula District Council, 2006
- Oil on canvas
- 910 x 810mm
Sir Neville Lyttelton (1845–1931) was the fifth of the twelve children of the fourth Baron Lyttelton (1817-1876) chairman of the Canterbury Association after whom the port of Lyttelton is named.
He was born at Hagley Hall, Worcestershire and educated at Eton. He was a professional soldier who served in the Rifle Brigade, in the uniform of which regiment he is depicted here. He served in Canada, India, Ireland and South Africa and rose to be Commander-in-Chief in Ireland, a poignant posting as his sister Lucy’s husband, Lord Frederick Cavendish (1836-1882), had been a victim of Irish nationalism in the Phoenix Park murders. Lyttelton retired in 1912 and spent the rest of his life as Governor of the Chelsea Royal Hospital. His autobiography ‘80 years soldiering, politics, games’ was published in 1927.
Archibald Stuart-Wortley was Lyttelton’s brother-in-law, being the brother of his wife Katherine (1860–1943). Stuart Wortley was a keen sportsmen and painted many shooting and hunting scenes as well as portraits. He was president of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters. Perhaps his best known work is the portrait of the cricketer W G Grace in the National Portrait Gallery, London.
See Sir Neville Lyttelton's grave at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea.