Major-General Merton Beckwith-Smith DSO MC MA

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Merton Beckwith-Smith

Дата рождения:
Место рождения: 24 Walton Street, Chelsea, London, Middlesex, England UK
Смерть: Умер в Hualien, Taiwan (Formosa)
Причина смерти: diphtheria
Ближайшие родственники:

Сын Beckwith Beckwith-Smith и Georgina Butler Moore
Муж Honor Dorothy Leigh, OBE
Отец Peter Merton Beckwith-Smith; Rosemary Honor Beckwith-Smith; Sarah Katherine Beckwith-Smith и John Moore Beckwith-Smith
Брат Muriel Georgina Beckwith-Smith

Менеджер: Ric Dickinson
Последнее обновление:

About Major-General Merton Beckwith-Smith DSO MC MA

Major-General Merton Beckwith-Smith DSO MC MA (11 July 1890 – 11 November 1942) was a British Army officer during the First and Second World Wars.


Early career

Beckwith-Smith was born on 11 July 1890, and educated at Eton and Oxford. In 1910 he was commissioned into the Coldstream Guards. He served with the Guards throughout the First World War, eventually becoming a staff officer in the Guards Division.

On 14 March 1918 he married Honor Dorothy Leigh. They had two sons and two daughters. His son Major Peter Merton Beckwith-Smith served in France, North-west Europe and Palestine during World War II. One of his daughters became a lady in waiting to Diana, Princess of Wales.

In 1930 Beckwith-Smith transferred to the Welsh Guards; he commanded the 1st Battalion from 1932 to 1937. After this he held various district commands in India before the outbreak of the Second World War.

Second World War

In 1940 he was given command of the 1st Guards Brigade, part of the British Expeditionary Force sent to France in 1939/1940. After the retreat from Dunkirk Beckwith-Smith was given command of the territorial 18th (East Anglian) Infantry Division which he trained in preparation for duty overseas.

In a training exercise against the 2nd Infantry Division the 18th Division won, the reward being the first posting overseas for the division.

In early 1942, after many weeks at sea, Beckwith-Smith's division was landed at Singapore. Japanese forces invaded Singapore Island on 8 February. Because of the defensive strategy implemented by the Allied commander, General Arthur Percival, most of the 18th Division saw little or no action. Percival surrendered the 80,000 British Commonwealth troops at Singapore on 15 February, including Beckwith-Smith and his division. In August 1942 he was moved to Formosa (now Taiwan) along with General Perrcival and all the senior officers from Singapore. On 11 November 1942 Major-General Merton Beckwith-Smith died at Karenko Camp of Diphtheria as a prisoner of war. In the spring of 1946 the Imperial War Graves Commission (now the CWGC) exhumed all the Taiwan POW remains and re-buried them in the Sai Wan Bay War Cemetery in Hong Kong. Many years later his grave was identified by Jack Edwards on the request of Diana, Princess of Wales. He is buried in Sai Wan War Cemetery in Hong Kong

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Хронология Major-General Merton Beckwith-Smith DSO MC MA

11 июля 1890
London, Middlesex, England UK
25 июня 1919
Возраст 28
4 ноября 1920
Возраст 30
20 января 1925
Возраст 34
30 июня 1929
Возраст 38
11 ноября 1942
Возраст 52
Hualien, Taiwan (Formosa)