Noel Beresford-Peirse (1887 - 1953)

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Death: Died
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About Noel Beresford-Peirse

Lieutenant-General Sir Noel Monson de la Poer Beresford-Peirse KBE, CB, DSO (22 December 1887 – 14 January 1953) was a British Army officer.

Family background

Beresford-Peirse was the son of Colonel William John de la Poer Beresford-Peirse and Mary, daughter of Thomas Chambers of Aberfoyle, County Londonderry. He was educated at Wellington College, Berkshire and at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich.

He was married three times. The first marriage (in 1912) was to Hazel Marjorie, daughter of J.A. Cochrane, Riverina, Australia. The marriage ended in divorce in 1924. The second marriage (in 1925) was to Jean, only child of Surgeon-Captain R.D. Jameson, CMG, RN. Jean died in 1926. In 1929 he married Katharine Camilla, daughter of Colonel James Morris Colquhoun Colvin, VC. All three marriages were childless.

Militaty career

Beresford-Peirse was commissioned into the Royal Artillery in 1907. He served in the First World War in Mesopotamia, France and, briefly, in Belgium and France. He was Mentioned in Dispatches and awarded the Distinguished Service Order in 1918. After the First World War, until 1929, he performed a number of roles in the Royal Artillery in France and Britain. There were then staff and administrative posts in the UK until 1935. In 1937, Beresford-Peirse was posted to India for "special duties" and subsequently he served two years as an instructor at the Senior Officers School in Belgaum, India. He was Brigadier in the Royal Artillery, Southern India Command during 1939 and 1940 and Aide-de-Camp to King George VI in 1939 and 1940.

At the beginning of the Second World War Beresford-Peirce was the Commander of Artillery for the Indian 4th Infantry Division, which at the time was based in Egypt. He was promoted to command the division in August 1940 and led it in North Africa (Operation Compass) and Sudan (the East African Campaign).

In March 1941 he was knighted via Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) and on 14 April 1941 he was given command of the Western Desert Force (later redesignated XIII Corps). He commanded the British forces in Sudan from October 1941 to April 1942 when he was put in command of the Indian XV Corps and then the Southern Army in India.

Beresford-Peirse was Welfare General of the India Command between 1945 and 1946. He retired on 13 June 1947, joining the Regular Army Reserve of Officers, and died in 1953.

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