Catalogue description War Office: Field Marshal Sir John Greer Dill: Papers

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Details of WO 282
Reference: WO 282
Title: War Office: Field Marshal Sir John Greer Dill: Papers

Official and personal correspondence of Field Marshal Sir John Dill as GOC Palestine (1936 to 1937), GOC Aldershot Command (1937 to 1939) with the BEF in France to April 1940, and as vice and then chief of the Imperial General Staff.

Date: 1936-1941
Separated material:

Other papers of Field Marshal Dill are to be found at the Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives at King's College, London.

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Sir John Greer Dill, Knight, 1881-1944

Physical description: 7 file(s)
Custodial history: Apart from some papers preserved in the Ministry of Defence the documents were formerly in the hands of Sir Reginald McDonald Buchanan who was his ADC from 1940.
Administrative / biographical background:

Field Marshal Sir John Greer Dill was born on 25th December 1881. He was commissioned into 1st Battalion Leinster Regiment in 1901 and saw active service in South Africa. After a period at Staff College he was appointed a Brigade Major in 1914, first with the Home Forces and then in France. He was appointed a Brigadier-General on the General Staff at BEF in 1917.

During the inter-war years Dill was successively the first Army Instructor at the new Imperial Defence College (1926); Commandant of the Staff College (1931-1934) and Director of Military Operations and Intelligence (1934-1936). In 1936 he was promoted to Lt. General and sent to Palestine as GOC. In 1937 he returned to England to take up the most important peacetime post in the Army, that of GOC Aldershot Command.

At the outbreak of the 2nd World War Dill was given command of I Corps of the BEF in France but in April 1940 he was appointed Vice Chief of the Imperial General Staff and on 26th May 1940 Chief of the Imperial General Staff, becoming a Field Marshal in November 1941. Under the strain of this position his health deteriorated and he relinquished the post a month later. He was then appointed governor-designate of Bombay but prior to taking up the post he accompanied Churchill to the United States and remained there as senior British representative on the Combined Chiefs of Staff Committee in Washington until his death on 4th November 1944.

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