Discussion in 'Prewar' started by Bala, Jun 19, 2018.

  1. Bala

    Bala Member

    In 1941
    Lt Colonel Cyril Ralph "Bill" Major
    took over command of Auxiliary Units (Churchill's secret British Resistance Organisation) and Fairbairn and Sykes were training them and the Commando's in Scotland.

    In 1927
    On 24/1/27 Lieutenant Major (Dorset Regiment) had a Special Appointment (Class GG) – with the Shanghai Defence Force and North China command [temp] until 24th November 1927.
    William E Fairbairn had been in the Shanghai Municipal Police Force since 1907 and an expert in fighting street and unarmed combat. Rank unknown?
    Eric A Sykes a weapons expert joined the Shanghai Municipal Police as an officer in the reserve.
    Fairbairn and Sykes had been friends since 1919

    What appointment would Lt Major have held and what does (Class gg) mean?

    Would the three of them have met? Are there any photographs taken that year?

    Thank you
  2. Maureene

    Maureene Well-Known Member

    According to a topic on the Great War Forum, reply by Ron Clifton:

    Class GG does indeed indicate a pay banding for the various "miscellaneous" staff appointments which sprang up during the war. The pay was £300 a year if quarters were allotted in addition, £350 if not, and the classification for allowances was 13.
    Source: Royal Warrant dated 5th July 1918, and Army Order 223 of 1918.

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  3. Bala

    Bala Member

    Thank you Maureen.
    I assume then that Lt Major was on a Staff appointment of some kind and not paid as a regular soldier.

    Regards Bill
  4. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    I think he was likely employed on Intelligence work as there were GG grade staff appointments doing such work in Ireland 1919/1921 -

    British Intelligence in Ireland

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  5. Bala

    Bala Member

    Found out that he was 14 Brigade Intelligence Officer so you were right - thanks
    Owen likes this.
  6. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member

    Thanks for the positive feedback:)

  7. Cee

    Cee Senior Member Patron

    Hi Bala,

    I'm sorry I can't help with a possible meet up in 1927 between Lieutenant Major (attached SDF) and Fairbairn and Sykes both with the SMP. As for photos there is one of Fairbairn and Sykes together taken sometime in the 30s.

    Fairbairn and Sykes 1930s.jpg

    A group photo taken in front of Colehills House, HQ for the Auxillary Units, shows Lt-Col. Major standing front centre with cane. "Lieutenant Colonel Cyril 'Bill' Major (formerly Directorate of Military Intelligence), aged 47, took over from Gubbins on 20 November 1940 and introduced a more ordered pyramid style military hierarchy throughout the whole organisation ..."

    Officers-Coleshill House.jpg

    The Auxiliers were trained on the grounds surrounding Coleshill House. I haven't run across yet any mention of Fairbairn or Sykes having visited Coleshill to conduct training.

    British Resistance Archive | Churchill's Auxiliary Units | A comprehensive online resource.

    Regards ...

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