|Sir Campbell Tait|
|Born||12 August 1886
Morice Town, Devon
|Died||17 July 1946
Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia
|Years of service||1902 - 1945|
|Commands held||HMS Dragon
South Atlantic Station
|Battles/wars||World War I
World War II
|Awards||Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath
Member of the Royal Victorian Order
Order of Orange-Nassau
Born in Morice Town, Devon to Deputy Surgeon-General and author, William Tait, and his wife Emma, Tait entered the Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth in 1902. Following his graduation, Tait became a career naval officer, serving in the Pacific, Atlantic, Mediterranean and China.
After serving in World War I, during which he was made a Member of the Royal Victorian Order (MVO), Tait married Katie Grenfell, daughter of Captain Hubert Grenfell, inventor of illuminated night sights for naval guns, on 3 November 1919. They had two daughters.
Tait was promoted to Commodore in 1921 and Captain in 1926, gaining his first command in 1928 as Commanding Officer of the HMS Dragon. There followed commands of the HMS Capetown and HMS Delhi before service as Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence before returning to the sea as Commanding Officer of the HMS Shropshire.
Made Rear Admiral, Tait was Naval Aide-de-camp to King George VI in 1938, a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in 1940 and Vice Admiral in 1941. before becoming Commodore of the principal naval depot at Portsmouth. It was in this position that Tait was recognised for the smooth mobilisation of the fleet at outbreak of World War II. After serving as Director of Personal Services at the Admiralty, Tait served as Commander-in-Chief, South Atlantic Station from 1942, and in this capacity, he established and headed a Combined Headquarters in Cape Town, where he led the Royal Navy, South African Army and South African Air Force, which was considered an important factor in maintaining allied domination around the Cape.
Tait was made a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) in 1943 and a Grand Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau (OON) in 1945, for services to the Royal Netherlands Navy. He was promoted to Admiral in May 1945 and was appointed Governor of Southern Rhodesia on 20 February 1945. Tait's tenure as Governor proved to be fleeting as, ailing for some time, Tait relinquished the Governorship in February 1946 after twelve months and died at Government House, Salisbury, five months later, less than a month before his 60th birthday.
There is an Admiral Tait Primary School in Harare, Zimbabwe, named in honour of Tait.
- ed. Matthew, H & Harrison, B. (2004) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, vol. 53, Oxford University Press.
- Little, C (1946) "Admiral Sir Campbell Tait: An Appreciation", The Times, 22 July 1946.
- Rasmussen, R. Kent, & S. Rubert (1990) Historical Dictionary of Zimbabwe, Second Edition, The Scarecrow Press, London. ISBN 0-8108-2337-3.
- The Times, "Sir Campbell Tait", 20 July 1946
Sir Algernon Willis
|Commander-in-Chief, South Atlantic Station
Sir Robert Burnett
Robert James Hudson
|Governor of Southern Rhodesia