Alexander Cameron, the older brother of former UK Prime Minister David Cameron, has died aged 59 after a long battle with cancer. Alexander was a prominent barrister who stepped down from the bar shortly after being diagnosed with cancer in 2020. He inspired his younger brother to become Conservative leader, with David saying he “lived in the shadow of my older brother”. Alexander was one of the best silks at the Criminal Bar and was a role model for David. When an opening for a new leader of the Conservative party appeared in 2005, Alexander told his brother: “You’ve got to go for it.”
Alexander was born in 1963, the elder son of Ian and Mary Cameron. He and David, who is three years his junior, attended Heatherdown preparatory school in Berkshire, and were both at Eton, where Alexander was an accomplished athlete. While David attended Oxford, Alexander went to Bristol University where he studied law and was called to the bar in 1986. He married fellow barrister Sarah Fearnley-Whittingstall, the cousin of chef Hugh, in 1990.
Throughout his career, Alexander represented a number of high-profile clients, including Rebekah Brooks, the former editor of the News of the World, in her phone-hacking defence in 2013. That year, he was also the first barrister for 90 years to appear on camera while in action at the Court of Appeal, after a major law change allowed televised proceedings. Alexander was well-respected in his illustrious career, and was a hugely respected and inspirational head of his chambers, Three Raymond Buildings.
Announcing his death, Alexander’s chambers said: “It is with immense sadness that Chambers announces the death of Alexander Cameron KC…He will be missed enormously, and our heartfelt condolences go to his wife, Sarah, their children Imogen and Angus, and to his wider family.” David Cameron paid tribute to his brother on Twitter, saying he was “devastated”, and described him as “an outstanding talent, a fantastic brother, brother-in-law and uncle”. Details of a memorial service will be announced in due course.
Alexander’s death comes after David Cameron’s father, Ian Cameron, died in 2010. Ian Cameron, who was also a stockbroker, had lived with the disability of having no legs for more than half a century. In a statement on his death, David said that his father had been “an amazing man—omnicompetent, a hard-driving dad who knew the value of a pound, a true friend … and someone who made a huge impression on everyone he met.”