Nicholas Ashley-Cooper, 12th Earl of Shaftesbury

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Nicholas Ashley-Cooper, 12th Earl of Shaftesbury : biography

3 June 1979 –

Shaftesbury’s goal was to raise financial support for ChildLink. The funds raised by the earl directly helped cover the college fees and vital education for poor and orphaned children of South India. He finished 24th and raised £6282.69.

Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc

On 29 August 2009, Shaftesbury participated in the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB) TDS Sur les Traces des Ducs de Savoie mountain ultramarathon, which is the most difficult foot race in Europe. The race takes place once a year in the Alps, across France, Italy and Switzerland. The distance is approximately 105 km, with a total elevation gain of around 6,700 m. He finished 29th in the race.

4 Deserts Race: Atacama Desert

In March 2011, the earl finished his second 4 Desert race in the Atacama Desert of Chile, considered the driest place on earth. The seven day, race began on 3 March and ended on 10 March. In honor of the completion of this race, Shaftesbury was the recipient of the Spirit Award, presented by 4 Desert and Racing the Planet officials. With completion of this race, he is qualified to participate in the final marathon, The Last Desert, to be held in Antarctica in November 2012.

Grand Shaftesbury Run

In 2010, the 12th Earl and Countess of Shaftesbury began working together to develop a national charitable event, known as the Grand Shaftesbury Run, held on the grounds of the historic Shaftesbury Estate. The inaugural run was launched on 12 June 2011. The run features two courses, a course and a half marathon (13.1 mi), in support of three charities, including Wings For Life, The Philip Green Memorial School, and the Victoria Education Centre and Sports College, Sparkle Appeal.

Shaftesbury Estates

Wimborne St Giles in East Dorset is the home base and centre of business of the Ashley-Coopers. The house possesses one of the finest private libraries in Great Britain.Mosley, Charles editor. Burke’s Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes (Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.: Burke’s Peerage [Genealogical Books] Ltd, 2003), volume 3, page 3576. ISBN 978-0-9711966-2-9 The Ashleys and Ashley-Coopers have made Wimborne St Giles their home since the 15th century. The small village of Wimborne St Giles rests within the family estate itself. The Ashley family arrived in Dorset, originally from Wiltshire, where they owned the manor of Ashley, since the 11th century. The first ancestor to reside in Wimborne St Giles was Robert Ashley (born c. 1415), fifth great grandfather of Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury.Timbs, John; and Alexander Gunn. , Read Books, 2006, pp. 444–446. ISBN 978-1-84664-342-2Burke, John. , John Russ Smith, p 18, 1844. ISBN 978-0-8063-0739-8

Built in 1651, the family seat of St Giles House has fallen into disrepair and has been unoccupied for about 60 years. In 2001, St Giles House was recorded on the Register of Buildings at Risk, as a Grade I listed building, indicating neglect and decay. Buildings recorded on the Grade I list include those of "exceptional interest, sometimes considered to be internationally important". The 12th Earl’s great grandfather, Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 9th Earl of Shaftesbury, was the last earl to live in the home.

Discussions regarding future use of St Giles House and the estate have been resumed following inheritance by the 12th Earl of Shaftesbury. Restoration will help secure the future of the house as a family home and as a venue for a wide range of activities including weddings and corporate events. The parkland and estate is also available for various sporting events and weddings. The estate management allows commercial partridge and pheasant shoots. Fishing is also available along the River Allen, yielding a fine head of native brown trout. The available water on the estate stretches from Loverley Mill up to the Perennial Spring, which includes Crichel, Bowerswaine, Brockington and Wimborne St Giles.

, the estate, house and parkland is available for TV, film and photo shoots. In 2010, various interior and exterior shots of St Giles House have provided the background and setting for the Autumn/Winter 2010 catalogue for menswear brand, Favourbrook. The 12th Earl can be seen, along with model, David Annand, modeling the Favourbrook line in the shots taken on the estate.