Sir Ian Clark Hutchison shared with Tony Benn the distinction of being born in Leith. Like the former Labour MP, Sir Ian was

languid, cheerful, rather old-fashioned and immensely courteous. There the similarities ended, for Clark Hutchison

was a one-nation Tory of the staunchest sort.

As MP for Edinburgh West for 18 years from 1941, he was always nothing less than a Conservative of the deepest blue, unswervingly loyal to his party's cause. As the years passed after the war, he became increasingly one of the rare band of survivors who had sat in Churchill's wartime parliament. Yet he never moved out of the back benches.

Born into a political family - his father Sir George Clark Hutchison had been Unionist MP for North Midlothian and his younger brother, Michael Clark Hutchison, served Edinburgh South - the young Clark Hutchison's education at Edinburgh Academy was swiftly continued at the Royal Naval colleges of Osbourne and Dartmouth.

The family also enjoyed a long naval tradition, as remembered by the anchor in the coat-of-arms granted to his father in 1907. He moved into the Royal Navy as a cadet in 1916 and later as a young lieutenant specialised in torpedoes, then a relatively innovative science.

Victim of Ramsay MacDonald's spending cuts of 1931 and forced to retire from his beloved service, he actively donned the colours of his party for the first time and stood as Unionist candidate in the unlikely battleground of Maryhill. Westminster eluded him, but the same year he was elected to Edinburgh Town Council, championing the cause of school meals for needy children, an issue of which he had direct experience when chairing the public assistance committee from 1937-39.

Recalled to the Royal Navy in 1939, he served for four years in the naval ordnance inspection department during which time he was returned for Edinburgh West unopposed under the wartime electoral agreement. The Labour landslide of 1945 left him unscathed, though with a reduced majority. A decade later he saw his party returned to power with more than 50% of the popular vote in Scotland, an achievement never matched by any party before or since, Clark Hutchison's own share being an invincible 67%.

An amiable if diffident man, his elegant figure in later life graced duties as a member of the Royal Company of Archers (The Queen's Bodyguard in Scotland) and as deputy lieutenant for Edinburgh. Knighted in 1954, he retired from Westminster in 1959, thereafter never taking an active role in politics again, content merely to remain a Scots Unionist. He bravely countered the early loss of his wife Sheena, and his long retirement was spent quietly, enjoying golf, fishing, and philately and giving service as a governor of Donaldson's School for the Deaf and on

the executive council of the British Legion.

He died in his 100th year, and is survived by his daughter Ailie and his two grandchildren.

Lt-Cdr Sir (George) Ian Clark Hutchison KB DL; born on January 4, 1903, died on February 2, 2002.