TORY PEER and former Treasury Minister Lord Bruce-Gardyne, who was MP

for South Angus between 1964 and 1974, died yesterday, three days after

his 60th birthday.

Among those to pay warm tribute were the Prime Minister, who described

him as a marvellous colleague, and Sir Hector Monro, Tory MP for

Dumfries, who said ''Jock Bruce-Gardyne was one of the keenest brains in

Scottish politics''.

Downing Street announced that the Tory Peer, a fierce advocate of

monetarism, died after a long illness. He had undergone brain surgery

last year.

But as recently as mid-January he opened a debate in the House of

Lords on the case for tax relief for people 65 and over, and at the end

of last year he launched a campaign against private medicine, claiming

health insurance schemes failed to cover fully the cost of major


Even when he knew death was imminent, Jock Bruce-Gardyne retained an

amazing bouyancy, cheerfulness, and commitment to work -- largely as a

political and financial commentator, according to political observers.

Mr Chris Moncrieff, Press Association chief political correspondent,

said: ''He even wrote and spoke about his illness and the prospect of

death with verve, wit and not the slightest hint of self-pity.''

For example, Lord Bruce-Gardyne said recently: ''Nothing could be more

absurd than to say it is brave of me. To bang out an article on my

typewriter is like saying it's brave for an alcoholic to take another

swig of whisky.

''I don't see any point in being other than matter-of-fact. There is

an inevitability about it. At least I've had time to put my affairs in

order and I seem able to continue my life of crime.

''If it is true that the nastier it has been for you in this world the

better for you in the next, then I'm afraid I'm due to be taken down a

peg or two.''

A persistent critic of the DeLorean car project long before it

collapsed in 1982 with the loss of #77m of taxpayers' money, he served

in the Treasury for 21 months, as Minister of State in 1981, and

Economic Secretary from 1981-83.

After losing South Angus in 1974, he became MP for the Cheshire seat

of Knutsford in 1979 until 1983, when the constituency disappeared under

boundary changes. He was created a life peer of Kirkden, Angus, in 1983,

after failing to be selected for the seat which partly replaced the old


Just before the 1983 General Election, he wrote: ''Mrs Thatcher's real

achievement, in my book, is that she has weaned us from the fatuous

illusion that government can somehow substitute for individual


''My generation grew up in an environment in which governments,

regardless of party label, claimed to be able by their comparatively

superior wisdom, to guarantee full employment and a more swiftly growing


''Mrs Thatcher has truly broken the mould. She has returned to

management the responsibility to manage. She has restored to the

shopfloor the right to insist that those who negotiate on its behalf

take cognisance of the consequence of their actions for employment.

The Prime Minister said she heard the news of his death with great

regret, and went on: ''He was a marvellous colleague, loyal, but always

retaining an independent mind.''

Lord Bruce-Gardyne had been a foreign correspondent for the Financial

Times; a contributor to the Daily Telegraph and the Sunday Telegraph,

and until recently, The Spectator.

He was educated at Winchester and Magdalen College, Oxford; served in

the Foreign Office from 1953 to 1956, and was Parliamentary Private

Secretary to the Secretary of State for Scotland from 1970-72.

Sir Hector said: ''I knew him very well as Scottish Whip, looking

after him for a long time. He was a fine spokesman for South Angus, and

it was very sad indeed when he moved to England.''

Lord Bruce-Gardyne is survived by his wife, Sarah, and two sons and a