George Henry Fowke

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Sir George Henry Fowke
Lieut-general Sir George Henry Fowke, Kcb Art.IWMART1796.jpg
Born (1864-09-10)10 September 1864
Died 8 February 1936(1936-02-08) (aged 71)
Dinard, France
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  British Army
Years of service 1884–1922
Rank Lieutenant General
Commands held Engineer-in-Chief, BEF
Adjutant-General, BEF

South African War

First World War
Awards Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath
Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George
Mentioned in Despatches

Lieutenant General Sir George Henry Fowke KCB, KCMG (10 September 1864 – 8 February 1936) was a British Army general, who served on the staff of the British Expeditionary Force during the First World War.


Fowke joined the Royal Engineers in 1884, and saw service in the South African War at the Defence of Ladysmith, where he was mentioned in despatches.[1] After the end of the war, he was appointed as Director of Public Works in the Transvaal and was a member of the Transvaal Legislative Council from 1902 to 1904.[2] During the Russo-Japanese War he was an observer attached to the Japanese Army in Manchuria, and then lectured on fortifications at the School of Military Engineering.[2] He was appointed the Assistant Adjutant General for the Royal Engineers in 1910, and then the Inspector of the Royal Engineers in 1913.[2]

On the outbreak of the First World War, he was appointed to the post of Brigadier-General Royal Engineers in the BEF, the senior engineering advisor.[2] As the war settled into a stalemate it became apparent that the Royal Engineers would play a significant role in trench warfare, and the position was changed to Chief Engineer and then to Engineer-in-Chief in 1915. It was in this position, that he agreed the formation of the Royal Engineer tunnelling companies, after a proposal from John Norton-Griffiths.

In February 1916 he was promoted to hold the post of Adjutant-General of the Expeditionary Force.[2] He held this post until the end of the war, and retired from the Army in 1922.[2]