Earldom of Aylesford
Coronet of a British Earl.svg

Arms of Finch, Earls of Aylesford: Argent, a chevron between three griffins passant sable[1]
Creation date1714
Created byGeorge I
PeeragePeerage of Great Britain
First holderHeneage Finch, 1st Earl of Aylesford
Present holderCharles Finch-Knightley, 12th Earl of Aylesford
Heir apparentJames Daniel Finch-Knightley, Lord Guernsey
Remainder toheirs male
Subsidiary titlesBaron Guernsey
Seat(s)Packington Hall
MottoAperto vivere voto ("To live in open faith")

Earl of Aylesford, in the County of Kent, is a title in the Peerage of Great Britain. It was created in 1714 for the lawyer and politician Heneage Finch, 1st Baron Guernsey. He had already been created Baron Guernsey in the Peerage of England in 1703. Finch was the younger son of Heneage Finch, 1st Earl of Nottingham and the great-grandson of Elizabeth Heneage, 1st Countess of Winchilsea. Lord Aylesford's eldest son, the second Earl, represented Maidstone and Surrey in Parliament. In 1712, he married Mary Fisher, daughter of Sir Clement Fisher, 3rd Baronet. Through this marriage Packington Hall in Warwickshire came into the Finch family. Their son, the third Earl, sat as a Member of Parliament for Leicestershire and Maidstone. His eldest son, the fourth Earl, represented Castle Rising and Maidstone in the House of Commons, and after entering the House of Lords on his father's death, served as Captain of the Yeomen of the Guard from 1783 to 1804 and as Lord Steward of the Household from 1804 to 1812.

His second but eldest surviving son, the fifth Earl, was a Tory Member of Parliament for Weobly. His son, the sixth Earl, represented South Warwickshire in Parliament as a Conservative. His grandson, the tenth Earl, assumed by Royal licence his grandmother's maiden surname of Knightley in addition to that of Finch. His son, the eleventh Earl, served as Lord Lieutenant of the West Midlands. As of 2015, the titles are held by the latter's son, who succeeded in 2008.

The Hon. Charles Finch, younger son of the third Earl, was Member of Parliament for Maidstone. His son Charles Griffith-Wynne (who assumed the surname of Griffith-Wynne in lieu of his patronymic), was Member of Parliament for Caernarvonshire. His son Charles Wynne sat as Member of Parliament for Caernarvon.

The family seat is Packington Hall, near Meriden, Warwickshire.

Earls of Aylesford (1714)

The heir apparent is the present holder's son (Heneage) James Daniel Finch-Knightley, Lord Guernsey (b. 1985).


  1. ^ Debrett's Peerage, 1968, p.102
  2. ^ Charles Coventry was the father of Francis Coventry, 12th Earl of Coventry (1912-2004) who succeeded to the title in 2002, and died leaving no sons. He was succeeded by an elderly first cousin living in Canada, born 1917. Francis was younger brother of Pamela, Countess of Aylesford (d. 1990).
  3. ^ Descendants of the Conqueror: Clarence 25. This shows all the descendants of the Crawley-Boevey baronets. Retrieved 10 December 2008.