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Frederick Spring CB CMG DSO
Born (1878-07-25)25 July 1878
Died 24 September 1963(1963-09-24) (aged 85)
Place of birth Bombay, India
Place of death Aldershot, Hampshire, England
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg British Army
Rank Brigadier-General
Commands held 11th Battalion, Essex Regiment
1st Battalion, Royal Lincolnshire Regiment
33rd Infantry Brigade
Battles/wars Second Boer War
First World War
Awards Companion of the Order of the Bath, Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George, Distinguished Service Order, Croix de guerre, Mentioned in Dispatches

Brigadier-General Frederick Gordon Spring CB CMG DSO JP (25 July 1878 – 24 September 1963) was a senior British Army officer.

Spring was born into an English gentry family in 1878 in Bombay, India, the son of Colonel Frederick William Spring, a Royal Artillery officer. He was a descendent of the Suffolk Spring family and a relation of Sir Cecil Spring Rice and Sir Thomas Spring. He was educated at Blundell's School and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.[1][2]

He was commissioned into the Royal Lincolnshire Regiment in May 1898.[1] He served with the regiment during the Second Boer War, when he commanded its mounted infantry contingent. Spring was adjutant of the 2nd Battalion between 1904 and 1907, and was promoted to captain in 1905.[3] He retired from the army as a major in 1907, but was recalled to service at the outbreak of the First World War. He initially served as an Embarkation Officer, but was soon posted to the Staff of the 33rd Infantry Brigade as the Brigade Signalling Officer.[4] He was deployed to Gallipoli with the brigade in 1915, and was involved in the successful capture of Chocolate Hill by the 6th (Service) Battalion from Ottoman forces during the Battle of Sari Bair.[5] However, the battalion suffered heavy loses and Spring was injured in the action. Upon recovering, he was promoted to lieutenant-colonel in June 1916 and took command of the 11th Battalion, Essex Regiment, which at the time was engaged on the Western Front.[6] When in this position, Spring presided over the court martial that sentenced Harry Farr to death for cowardice. He commanded the 11th Essex during the Battle of the Somme and the Battle of Cambrai. He was promoted to colonel in 1918. In September that year he returned to the 33rd Brigade as its brigadier-general. Spring was Mentioned in Dispatches five times over the course of the war.[2] He was also awarded the Croix de guerre by the French government. Following the end of hostilities, Spring was appointed Senior Instructor at the Senior Officers School, Belgaum, India from January 1921 to September 1922.[7] Back in England, Spring continued to serve with the Lincolnshire Regiment, commanding the 1st Battalion between 1923 and 1927.[8]

Between 1927 and 1931, Spring was Assistant Quartermaster General of Southern Command in England. He was subsequently the commander of the Poona (Independent) Brigade Area, Southern Command, India until his retirement in 1935.[8] From 1935 to 1939, he served as Inspector of Recruiting.[9] During the Second World War, he worked on the Imperial General Staff at the War Office. He was also a Justice of the Peace. He married Violet Maud Turnbull, the granddaughter of Colonel H. L. Maydwell, in late 1919.[10] In 1933 Spring's nine-year old son, John Gordon Spring, died after an accident while being shown around HMS Hood at Portsmouth. He fell 60 ft down an open hatch and died the next day.[11]

Spring died in 1963 in Aldershot. He has a memorial in Lincoln Cathedral.[12]

Publications[edit | edit source]

  • The History of the 6th (Service) Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment 1914 - 1919 (Written in the 1920s - first published in 2009 by Poacher Books)

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 The London Gazette, 6 May 1898 http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/26964/pages/2821/page.pdf
  2. 2.0 2.1 The VC and DSO, Volume III http://lib.militaryarchive.co.uk/library/Biographical/library/The-VC-and-DSO-Volume-III/files/assets/basic-html/page350.html
  3. The London Gazette, 5 January 1906 http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/27871/pages/110/page.pdf
  4. The London Gazette, 17 December 1915 http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/29405/pages/12564/page.pdf
  5. F. G. Spring, 'Postcript I', The History of the 6th (Service) Battalion, Lincolnshire Regiment (Poacher Books, 2008), 69.
  6. The London Gazette, 9 March 1916 http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/29501/supplements/2544/page.pdf
  7. The London Gazette, 21 June 1921 http://www.london gazette.co.uk/issues/32364/pages/4920/page.pdf
  8. 8.0 8.1 The London Gazette, 4 June 1934 http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/34056/pages/3558/page.pdf
  9. "Brig.-Gen. F. G. Spring." Times [London, England] 26 Sept. 1963: 18. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 27 Dec. 2013.
  10. The Times (London), 7 October 1919, page 27.
  11. "News in Brief." Times [London, England] 4 Aug. 1933: 12. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 27 Dec. 2013.
  12. Lincoln Cathedral Roll of Honour http://www.roll-of-honour.com/Lincolnshire/LincolnCathedralIndividuals.html
Military offices
Preceded by
Arthur Daly
Officer Commanding the 33rd Brigade
September 1917 - December 1918
Succeeded by
Post abolished

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