Michael Palmer (British Army officer)

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Sir Michael Palmer
Birth name Joseph Michael Palmer
Born (1928-10-17)17 October 1928
Died 21 February 2017(2017-02-21) (aged 88)
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  British Army
Years of service 1948–1985
Rank Major-General
Service number 400011
Commands held 14th/20th King's Hussars
Royal Armoured Corps
Awards Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order

Major-General Sir Joseph Michael Palmer, KCVO (17 October 1928 – 21 February 2017) was a senior British Army officer. He was Defence Services Secretary from 1982 to 1985.

Early life[edit]

Born on 17 October 1928, Palmer was the son of Lieutenant-Colonel William Robert Palmer, DSO and his wife Joan Audrey Palmer (née Smith). He was educated at Sandroyd School in Wiltshire, where he was head boy in 1937.[1] After Sandroyd, Palmer attended Wellington College at Crowthorne in Berkshire.[2]

Military career[edit]

Having attended the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, Palmer was commissioned into the 14th/20th King's Hussars as a second lieutenant on 22 December 1948, with seniority from that date. He was given the service number 400011.[3] Promoted to lieutenant on 22 December 1950,[4] he was Adjutant of 14th/20th King's Hussars from 1953 to 1955, and was given the acting rank of captain on appointment.[2] Promoted to captain on 22 December 1954,[5] he served as Adjutant of the Duke of Lancaster's Own Yeomanry from 1956 to 1959.[2]

He attended Staff College, Camberley in 1960[2] and, having been promoted to major on 22 December 1961,[6] he attended the Joint Services Staff College in 1965.[2] He was promoted to lieutenant colonel on 30 June 1969[7] and between 1969 and 1972 he was commanding officer of the 14th/20th King's Hussars.[2] He was promoted colonel on 30 June 1973.[8] He went on to be Commander Royal Armoured Corps at Headquarters 1st (British) Corps in 1974 and, having been promoted to brigadier on 31 December 1974,[9] he became Assistant Chief of Staff at Allied Forces Central Europe in 1976.[2] He became Director Royal Armoured Corps on 8 December 1978[10] and was promoted to major-general on 19 February 1980.[11] He was Defence Services Secretary from 1982[12] to 1985, when he retired.[13] On 21 March 1985, Palmer was appointed Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (KCVO).[14]

Palmer was appointed Honorary Colonel of his old regiment, the 14th/20th King's Hussars on 15 February 1981.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Palmer and his wife Jilly have three children, Jeremy, Jonathan and Deborah. Palmer is the father-in-law of artist and journalist, Angela Palmer.[2]

He died on 21 February 2017 at the age of 88.[16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Sandroydian" (War Edition). August 1942. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "PALMER, Maj.-Gen. Sir (Joseph) Michael". Who's Who 2012. A & C Black. December 2011. 
  3. ^ "No. 38535". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 February 1949. p. 746. 
  4. ^ "No. 39096". The London Gazette (Supplement). 22 December 1950. p. 6379. 
  5. ^ "No. 40354". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 December 1954. p. 7209. 
  6. ^ "No. 42545". The London Gazette (Supplement). 19 December 1961. p. 9290. 
  7. ^ "No. 44885". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 July 1969. p. 6783. 
  8. ^ "No. 46046". The London Gazette (Supplement). 7 August 1973. pp. 9388–9389. 
  9. ^ "No. 46469". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 January 1975. p. 863. 
  10. ^ "No. 47738". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 January 1979. p. 330. 
  11. ^ "No. 48229". The London Gazette (Supplement). 23 June 1980. p. 8995. 
  12. ^ "No. 48879". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 February 1982. p. 1402. 
  13. ^ "No. 50128". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 May 1985. p. 7058. 
  14. ^ "No. 50061". The London Gazette. 26 March 1985. p. 3482. 
  15. ^ "No. 48540". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 March 1981. p. 3074. 
  16. ^ Palmer
Military offices
Preceded by
Sir Leslie Townsend
Defence Services Secretary
1982–1985
Succeeded by
Sir Richard Peirse