Cyril Ralph Major

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Colonel Cyril Ralph “Bill” Major
Life dates
23 Dec 1893 - 18 Sep 1977
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Born in Bridport, Dorset.

A WW1 veteran he joined the Dorset Regiment and entered the theater of war 26 Feb 1916 as Private 2856. Promoted to 2nd Lieutenant then Lieutenant 28 Aug 1917. He was awarded the Victory and British Medals.

He married Olive Sarah Neal in 1920.

Unit or location Role Posted from until
Coleshill House, GHQ Commanding Officer Auxiliary Units 1940 1942
National ID
DMJL 181/1
The Dorsetshire Regiment
The Royal Irish Fusiliers

Chief of staff of MI2c (Military Intelligence for Japan) 1930-1933

Nov 1940 Replaced Colonel Gubbins as Commander Auxiliary Units at Coleshill House 

23 Feb 1942 He was appointed Command Defence Officer [RAF Regiment] 23rd February 1942 [possibly notified as a War Office order before this date, 15th perhaps?] I would suspect his previous involvement with the RAF in 1926 was the reason behind his appointment to the newly formed RAF Regiment, as during 1926 he qualified as Branch Intelligence Officer at RAF Old Sarum [near to Salisbury] and as an instructor; Interpretation of Air Photographs [Farnborough]

In 1920, Old Sarum became home to the RAF’s School of Army Co-operation, and started to develop RAF and Army skills in airborne artillery spotting and tactical reconnaissance. 

Promoted War Substantive Lieutenant Colonel. 
June 1945 Director of Psychological Warfare, HQ Supreme Allied Commander South East Asia
1946-1954 Attached War Office.
1954-1958 On staff of Prime Minister of Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland,
12 June 1958 HM's birthday Honours awarded the OBE for public services to the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland

1939 Mizen Way, Cobham, Surrey
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TNA ref WO372/13/88244