Horace Law

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Sir Horace Law
Born (1911-06-23)23 June 1911
Dublin, Ireland
Died 30 January 2005(2005-01-30) (aged 93)
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  Royal Navy
Rank Admiral
Commands held HMS Centaur
Britannia Royal Naval College
Naval Home Command
Battles/wars World War II
Korean War
Awards Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Officer of the Order of the British Empire
Distinguished Service Cross

Admiral Sir Horace Rochfort Law GCB OBE DSC (23 June 1911 – 30 January 2005) was Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command.

Naval career[edit]

Educated at Sherborne School and the Royal Naval College Dartmouth,[1] Law joined the Royal Navy in 1929.[2] He became a Gunnery specialist in 1937.

War service[edit]

Law served in World War II in the anti-aircraft cruiser HMS Cairo in 1939, the cruiser HMS Coventry in 1940 and the cruiser HMS Nigeria in 1942.[2] He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his role in the British landings in Greece and the subsequent evacuations from Greece and Crete.[1]

He served in the Korean War arranging naval gunfire support for the Korean Army.[1]

Post-war service[edit]

He was appointed Commanding Officer of the destroyer HMS Duchess in 1951[1] and the carrier HMS Centaur in 1958[2] and then made Commander of the Britannia Royal Naval College in 1960.[2]

He went on to be Flag Officer Sea Training in 1961, Flag Officer Submarines in 1963 and Controller of the Navy in 1965.[2] He was made Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command and Flag Officer, Portsmouth Area in 1970.[2] He was also First and Principal Naval Aide-de-camp to the Queen from 1970 to 1972.[2] He retired in 1972.[2]


In retirement he became Chairman of Hawthorn Leslie and Company[1] and was a member of Security Commission from 1973 to 1982.[2]

In 1979 he was invited to deliver the MacMillan Memorial Lecture to the Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland. He chose the subject 'Belief and Discipline in a Free Society'.[3]

Personal life[edit]

In 1941 he married Heather Coryton: they went on to have two sons and two daughters.[1] Law was a resident of South Harting, West Sussex, where he was a lay preacher at the parish church; a room at the church is named after him.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Admiral Sir Horace Law The Times, 1 February 2005
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives
  3. ^ MacMillan Memorial Lecture
  4. ^ "Obituary - Admiral Sir Horace Law". The Telegraph. 2 February 2005. Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
Military offices
Preceded by
Hugh Mackenzie
Flag Officer Submarines
Succeeded by
Ian McGeoch
Preceded by
Sir Michael Le Fanu
Controller of the Navy
Succeeded by
Sir Michael Pollock
Preceded by
Sir John Frewen
Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command
Succeeded by
Sir Andrew Lewis
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Sir John Frewen
First and Principal Naval Aide-de-Camp
Succeeded by
Sir Michael Pollock