Andrew Leith Hay was born in Aberdeen in 1785.
In 1806 he joined the army as an ensign and went to the Peninsular Campaign. He retired from service after 1819 and turned his attention to politics.
In 1832 he became a Member of Parliament for Elgin Burghs. He was soon noticed by Lord Melbourne for his readiness to speak, as well as his military background, and he was appointed Clerk of the Ordnance in 1834. He held this position until 1838 when he was offered the role of governorship of Bermuda. He resigned his seat in Parliament to take up this role, however, this was not possible after Hay inherited his father’s estate and he had to live in Belgium due to poverty.
Hay was able to return to Scotland in 1840 and was once again elected MP for Elgin Burghs in 1841.
Outside politics, Hay had interests in architecture and published “The Castellated Architecture of Aberdeenshire” in 1849.
Andrew Leith Hay died at his home, Leith Hall, in 1862.