Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Royds Pownall was born in 1887 as second son of of late C. A. W. Pownall, Blackheath.
He married in 1918 with Lucy Louttit Gray (died 1950), youngest daughter of late William Henderson, Aberdeen.
He was educated at Rugby School; Royal Military Academy, Woolwich; Staff College, Camberley and Imperial Defence College.
Served in Royal Field Artillery and Royal Horse Artillery. In England and India, 1906-1914; served in France, 1914-1919 (Distinguished Service Order, Military Cross) operations North West Frontier India, 1930-1931 (Bar to Distinguished Service Order); Brigade Major Royal Artillery, 17th Division, 1917-1919; Brigade Major, School of Artillery, 1924-1925; General Staff Officer Grade II. Staff College, Camberley, 1926-1929; Military Assistant Secretary, Committee of Imperial Defence, 1933-1935. Deputy Secretary, 1936: Commandant, School of Artillery, Larkhill, 1936-1938; Director of Military Operations and Intelligence, War Office, 1938-1939; Chief of General Staff, British Expeditionary Force, 1939-1940; Inspector-General of Home Guard, 1941; commanded British Troops in Northern Ireland, 1940-1941; Vice-Chief of Imperial General Staff, War Office, 1941 Commander-in-Chief, Far East, Dec. 1941 Jan. 1042; Lieutenant-General, 1942; Chief of Staff A.B.D.A. Command, Far East, Jan.-Feb., 1942: General Officer Commanding Ceylon, March 1942-March 1943; Commander-in-Chief Persia-Iraq. 1943; Chief of Staff to Supreme Allied Commander, South East Asia Command, 1943-1944.
He retired in 1945 and became a member of many associations such as Chairman Friary Meux Ltd.; Member Committee, Lloyds Bank, 8 Pall Mall, Chief Commissioner St. John Ambulance Brigade, 1947-1949; Vice-Chancellor Order of St. John, 1950. Chancellor 1951. G.C.St.J.
He died on 9 June 1961.
His awards include Knight Commander of the Bath, created in 1945 (Companion of the (Order of the) Bath 1938); Knight (Commander of the Order) of the British Empire created. 1940; Distinguished Service Order 1918; Military Cross; Colonel Commandant Royal Artillery, 1942-1952.
Published in U S Legacies Magazine March 2004