William Bartholomew

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This article is about the British General. For the English librettist, composer, and writer, see William Bartholomew (writer).
Sir William Bartholomew
Nickname(s) Barty
Born 16 March 1877
Died 31 December 1962 (aged 85)
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg British Army
Years of service 1897 - 1940
Rank General
Unit Royal Artillery
Commands held 6th Infantry Brigade
Northern Command
Battles/wars World War I
World War II
Awards Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George
Distinguished Service Order

General Sir William Henry Bartholomew, GCB, CMG, DSO, ADC (General) (16 March 1877 – 31 December 1962) was a British General during the Second World War and former Colonel Commandant to the Royal Artillery.

Army career[edit]

Educated at Newton College, South Devon and the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, Bartholomew was commissioned into the Royal Artillery in 1897.[1] He was promoted to lieutenant on 23 March 1900, and to captain on 22 March 1902.[2]

He served in World War I initially as a General Staff Officer in 4th Division, and then as a Brigadier-General on the General Staff of 20 Corps from 1917 and on the General Staff of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force from 1918.[1]

After the War he commanded 6th Infantry Brigade from 1923 moving on to be Director of Recruiting and Organisation at the War Office in 1927.[1] He was appointed Commandant of the Imperial Defence College in 1929 and Director of Military Operations and Intelligence at the War Office in 1931.[1] He became Chief of the General Staff in India in 1934 and then General Officer Commanding-in-Chief for Northern Command in 1937; he retired in 1940.[1]

He was made an Aide de Camp General to the King from 1938 to 1940 and Colonel Commandant of the Royal Artillery from 1934 to 1937.[1]

After the Army[edit]

In retirement, Bartholomew served as North Eastern Regional Commissioner for Civil Defence between 1940 and 1945.[1] He lived at Claxton Hall near York.[3]He donated over £20,000 in 1921 to the Public Dispensary and Hospital, Leeds; later becoming world-renowned St James' Teaching Hospital.


Military offices
Preceded by
Sir Herbert Richmond
Commandant of the Imperial Defence College
Succeeded by
Sir Robert Brooke-Popham
Preceded by
Ronald Charles
Director of Military Operations and Intelligence
Succeeded by
John Dill
Preceded by
Sir Kenneth Wigram
Chief of the General Staff (India)
Succeeded by
Sir Ivo Vesey
Preceded by
Sir Alexander Wardrop
GOC-in-C Northern Command
Succeeded by
Sir Ronald Adam