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Brigadier-General Harold Maxwell Grenfell G.M.G, M.V.O (1870-1928)

Howard Maxwell GrenfellGRENFELL, HAROLD MAXWELL, was born in London 17 August 1870, the fifth son of Pascoe Du Pre Grenfell, by his wife and cousin, Sophia, daughter of Admiral John Pascoe Grenfell.

He was the elder brother of Robert Septimus Grenfell, killed at Omdurman in 1898 and the twins Francis Octavius and Riversdale Nonus Grenfell both killed in World War 1. He was a nephew of Field Marshall Francis Wallace Grenfell, later the first Lord Grenfell.

Educated at Eton College he joined the 1st Life Guards in 1892 and as a junior officer he took part in the ill-fated Jameson Raid against the Transvaal in 1896 but was not involved in the subsequent court case.

He served with the Nile Expedition of 1898 being present at the battle of Omdurman and was twice mentioned in despatches. During the South African War 1899-1902, as a major he was in command of a mobile column in the 2nd Regiment of Brabant’s Horse. He was mentioned in despatches four times and promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel to become the youngest of that rank in the Army at the time.

In 1902 he was created M.V.O. by Queen Victoria, and subsequently served in the 17th Lancers and the 3rd Dragoon Guards which he commanded. He retired in 1914 but after the outbreak of war returned to duty. In 1917 he was created C.M.G for services overseas.

He married firstly Lady Maria Frances Parsons in 1906 who died in 1927 and secondly Elizabeth Crawford nee Walker in 1928. General Grenfell died in Northampton 26 April 1929.

[Obituaries April 27 & 29 1929 The Times, Forces War Records, Private information. Photograph reproduced by kind permission of David Russell.]

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