Robin was the younger son of Sir John Grant Lawson 1st Baronet and his wife Sylvia Hunter. The title became extinct on the death of the 2nd Baronet, Robin’s brother Peter, in 1973.

Sir John was Member of Parliament for the Thirsk & Malton Division of the North Riding of Yorkshire from 1892-1906 and died in 1919. He had inherited Nuttall Hall, Ramsbottom, Lancashire from his mother whose Grant forbears had made a fortune in the cotton industry.  Lady Lawson was twenty-five years younger than her husband. Her father was an owner of coalmines.

Robin was educated at Harrow and Matriculated in 1927. He was up at Christ Church from 1927 until 1930.

He visited South Africa in 1928, returning from Durban on the Arundel Castle to Southampton on 24 September. At the beginning of October 1929, he returned from Lourenco Marques on the same ship. On both occasions, he is described as a student. On 13 March 1933, he arrived at Southampton from Durban and had “no occupation”.

On 23 May 1934, he married Mittie Mary Starr Bailey, a daughter of the South African cricketer and diamond tycoon, Sir Abe Bailey by his second marriage. They were divorced the following year. [She married and divorced two further times.]

Robin described himself as a “Diamond Valuer” when he arrived at Plymouth from New York in January 1936. Travelling with his mother, they gave their address as 18 Gloucester Place, London W1.

He was gazetted to be a 2nd Lieutenant. in the Royal Armoured Corps on 24 June 1939 (late Cadet Corporal, Harrow School. Contingent  Junior. Div., O.T.C.)

He was serving as a Captain in the Northamptonshire Regiment when he died at Bury St. Edmunds on 10 April 1944.

He is buried in the churchyard of St. Andrew at Bishopthorpe, York.