British Deputy High Commission, Chennai

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British Deputy High Commission, Chennai
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
Coat of arms of the United Kingdom
Location India Chennai, India
Address 20 Anderson Road,
Chennai 600 006,
Coordinates Coordinates: 13°03′56″N 80°14′57″E / 13.0656°N 80.2493°E / 13.0656; 80.2493
Deputy High Commissioner Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford (since October 2018)
Website British Deputy High Commission, Chennai

The British Deputy High Commission, Chennai is the United Kingdom diplomatic mission with responsibility for southern India, namely, the states of Karnataka,Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and the union territory of Puducherry. The Deputy High Commissioner is equivalent to a Consul-General, and reports to the British High Commission.[1] The current Deputy High Commissioner is Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford. He succeeds Bharat Joshi.


The consular section of the British Deputy High Commission, Chennai, is located at 20 Anderson Road, Nungambakkam. The British Council and the British Library are located at 737, Anna Salai.

The Deputy High Commission[edit]

The Deputy High Commission flies the Union Flag

The consular section of the British Deputy High Commission provides consular assistance and protection for British citizens. The Chennai consular region has a trade office at Hyderabad[2] and a Deputy High Commission office at Bangalore,[3] functioning from 2009, for which visas are issued from the Deputy High Commission office at Chennai.[4] The visa application centres are located in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi and Bangalore.[5][6]

List of Deputy High Commissioners

Below is the list of deputy high commissioners of the British Deputy High Commission in Chennai (formerly Madras):[7]

  1. Sir Christopher Masterman, CSI, CIE (1947–1948)
  2. Charles A. Gault, CBE (1948–1949)
  3. James W. D. Locker, OBE (1949–1951)
  4. George E. Crombie, CMG (1951–1953)
  5. Leonard J. D. Wakely, CMG, OBE (1953–1957)
  6. Ronald G. Chisholm (1957–1960)
  7. Mark E. Allen, CMG, CVO (1960–1961)
  8. William J. M. Paterson, CMG (1961–1965)
  9. Clifford B. B. Heathcote-Smith, CBE (1965–1968)
  10. Victor C. Martin, OBE (1968–1971)
  11. John E. A. Miles, CBE (1971–1975)
  12. Alfred C. Hall, CBE (1975–1977)
  13. Neville A. I. French, CMG, LVO (1977–1980)
  14. Arthur S.-M. Marshall, CBE (1980–1983)
  15. Thomas Stubbs, OBE (1983–1986)
  16. David K. Sprague, MVO (1986–1989)
  17. Anthony B. N. Morey, CBE (1989–1991)
  18. David Cockerham, CBE (1991–1994)
  19. Sidney H. Palmer (1994–1999)
  20. Michael E. J. Herridge (1999–2003)
  21. Stuart H. Innes (2003–2005)[8]
  22. Michael L. Connor (2005–2009)
  23. Michael S. Nithavrianakis (2009–2013)
  24. Bharat Joshi (2013–October 2018)
  25. Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford (October 2018–present)[9]


In 2006, the Deputy High Commission at Chennai processed 11,224 visa applications, next only to the Mumbai Centre. The High Commissions at Mumbai, New Delhi and Kolkata processed 14,366, 6,688 and 1,328 applications, respectively.[10] In 2008, of the 336,000 student visas issued in India, around 20 percent (67,000) were issued in Chennai.[11] Of late, the visa rejection rate from the Deputy High Commission at Chennai has been increased.[12]

As part of the U.K. Border Agency's new guidelines, the Deputy High Commission started processing U.K. visa applications from the British High Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in a phased manner.[13][14] As of 2011, the U.K. Border Agency in Chennai processed most visa applications from Sri Lanka.[15][16]

In December 2013, the Deputy High Commission launched a pilot passport pass-back service, a user-pays service that enables applicants to retain their passport for the majority of the application processing period, for the first time in the country.[17]

The British Council[edit]

Logo of the British Council

The British Council division of the Deputy High Commission is the United Kingdom's primary cultural relations organisation and is responsible for activities in education, English language, governance, science and the arts. The British Council office at Chennai covers the South Indian region. It plays an important role in helping Indian students pursue their studies in the United Kingdom.[18] The council also manages the British Library.[19] The British Council division publishes two magazines—Postgraduate U.K. and Club U.K., the latter meant for Indian students.[18]

According to 2004 U.K. government figures, of the 14,000 Indian students studying in the United Kingdom, 43 percent hail from South India.[18]

In 2010, the British Council launched the British Council IELTS Scholarship Award with the objective of assisting Indian students to continue their postgraduate study at any university abroad.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ British Deputy High Commissioner Chennai
  2. ^ "Hyderabad Location and Access". UK in India. Retrieved 26 Jan 2012.
  3. ^ "Bangalore Location and Access". UK in India. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  4. ^ "Britain 'upgrades' Bangalore trade office to deputy high commission". India Tech Online. 3 September 2009. Archived from the original on 25 July 2012. Retrieved 26 Jan 2012.
  5. ^ "UK visa application centres to shut for 5 days in April". The Economic Times. Chennai: The Times Group. 5 March 2010. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  6. ^ "Expanded UK Visa services in Kerala". The Economic Times. Chennai: The Times Group. 2 January 2004. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  7. ^ Mackie, Colin (2017). "A Directory of British Diplomats" (pdf). Retrieved 12 December 2017.
  8. ^ "New British Deputy High Commissioner". The Financial Express. Chennai: The Indian Express. 17 July 2003. Retrieved 21 Apr 2012.
  9. ^ "New British envoy takes over". The Hindu. Chennai: Kasturi & Sons. 11 October 2018. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
  10. ^ Kumar, Rahul (3 April 2007). "Smooth passage for students to UK". The Economic Times. Chandigarh: The Times Group. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  11. ^ George, Daniel P. (29 August 2009). "UK grows where Oz takes the beating: Luring desi students". The Times of India. Chennai: The Times Group. Retrieved 29 Jul 2012.
  12. ^ Seshagiri, Mathang (17 February 2005). "UK visa: Students 'forge' their way". The Times of India. Chennai: The Times Group. Retrieved 24 Jan 2012.
  13. ^ "British High Commission, Colombo announces new visa procedure". BBS Netting. Colombo. Archived from the original on 2012-01-11. Retrieved 26 Jan 2012.
  14. ^ "Applying for a UK visa in Sri Lanka". UK in Sri Lanka. Retrieved 12 Feb 2012.
  15. ^ "Sri Lankan companies get faster visas for UK visits". Lanka Business Online. Colombo: Lanka Business Online. 7 December 2011. Archived from the original on 20 November 2012. Retrieved 12 Feb 2012.
  16. ^ "UK High Commission in Sri Lanka To Stop Issuing Visas". The Nation. Colombo: 3 February 2008. Retrieved 12 Feb 2012.
  17. ^ "UK to launch passport pass-back service". Business Line. Chennai: The Hindu. 6 December 2013. Retrieved 7 Dec 2013.
  18. ^ a b c Subramanian, T.S. (22 May – 4 June 2004). "Encouraging studies abroad". Frontline. The Hindu. 21 (11). Archived from the original on 15 June 2011. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  19. ^ "Who we are". British Council. Archived from the original on 17 September 2002. Retrieved 25 Jan 2012.
  20. ^ Chitradeepa, A. (5 September 2011). "IELTS initiative to recognise excellence". The Hindu. Chennai: The Hindu. Retrieved 30 Jan 2012.

External links[edit]