Alfred Codrington

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Sir Alfred Codrington
Born 4 May 1854
Died 12 September 1945 (aged 91)
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg British Army
Rank Lieutenant-General
Commands held 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards
1st London Division
London District
Third Army
Battles/wars Anglo-Egyptian War
Second Boer War
World War I
Awards Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order
Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath

Lieutenant-General Sir Alfred Edward Codrington GCVO KCB (4 May 1854 – 12 September 1945) was a British Army officer who served in colonial wars in Africa during the late nineteenth century, and later commanded a reserve army during the First World War.

Military career[edit]

Born in 1854, the second son of General Sir William John Codrington, he was educated at Harrow and entered the Coldstream Guards in 1873. He first saw active service during the Anglo-Egyptian War of 1882, where he was mentioned in despatches. He later commanded the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards in the Second Boer War between 1899 and 1902, where he was wounded twice, mentioned in despatches, and given a brevet promotion as Colonel. He received the Queen's medal with three clasps, and the King's medal with two.[1]

He commanded the 1st London Division of the Territorial Force from 1908 to 1909, when he was appointed Major-General commanding the Brigade of Guards and General Officer Commanding London District, retiring from this post in 1913. He returned to duty after the outbreak of the First World War, serving as the Military Secretary to Lord Kitchener, the Secretary of State for War from August until October 1914.[1] He was then appointed to command Third Army in the Home Forces; this was based around Luton, and contained four Territorial divisions and two Territorial cavalry brigades.[2] He relinquished command in 1916.[1] He was appointed to sit on a Pensions Appeal Tribunal in the summer of 1917, which dealt with appeals against governmental decisions on military pensions, and later published a book on War Pensions: Past and Present, co-authored with Edward Abbott Parry, another member of the Tribunal.[3]

His final military position was the ceremonial colonelcy of the Coldstream Guards, to which he was appointed in 1918.[1] Unusually, this had been a position previously occupied by his father.[4] He was appointed chairman of the Society of Miniature Rifle Clubs in 1917, and President of the Association in 1932.[5]


He married Adela Harriet Portal, the niece of the Earl of Minto, in 1885; she died in 1935.[1] The couple had three sons, Geoffrey, William, and John, and one daughter, Mary. Geoffrey became the High Sheriff of Wiltshire and an usher to both King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II, whilst William was the Chief Security Officer to the War Cabinet during the Second World War and later High Sheriff of Rutland.


  1. ^ a b c d e Who Was Who
  2. ^ Rinaldi, p. 26
  3. ^ Digitised copy
  4. ^ William Codrington at Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
  5. ^ Brief History, National Smallbore Rifle Association


Military offices
Preceded by
Sir Frederick Stopford
GOC London District
Succeeded by
Sir Francis Lloyd
Preceded by
Sir William Franklyn
Military Secretary
August 1914–October 1914
Succeeded by
Sir Frederick Robb