Ian was the only son of Major R.M.C. Abney-Hastings [formerly Huddlestone] and his wife, the Countess of Loudon and was born at Loudon Castle, Galston, Ayrshire. He had two younger sisters.

His mother succeeded her father the 11th Earl of Loudon in 1921, her two brothers having been killed within a month of each other in 1915.

He was educated at Ampleforth and Matriculated in 1936. He was up at Christ Church for only two years. He joined the Royal Artillery.

At the time of his death, he was engaged to be married to Muriel Foster Kemp.

He was killed on 11 July 1944 and is buried in Ancona War Cemetery Plot III. H. 7.

He is commemorated on the War Memorial at Galston, Ayrshire.