Secretary of State for War

From Naval History Archive
Jump to navigationJump to search
United Kingdom
Office of the Secretary of State for War
Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom from 1837 to 1952.png
Royal Arms as used by His Majesty's Government
War Office
StyleThe Right Honourable
(Formal prefix)
Secretary of State for War
Member ofBritish Cabinet
Army Council
SeatWestminster, London
AppointerThe British Monarch
on advice of the Prime Minister
Term lengthNo fixed term
Formation1794-1801
1854-1964
First holderHenry Dundas
Final holderJames Ramsden

The Secretary of State for War, commonly called the War Secretary, was a British Cabinet level position which existed from 1794 to 1801 and from 1854 to 1964. The Secretary of State for War headed Office of the Secretary of State for War (1794-1854) and then the War Office from 1854 onward and was assisted by a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for War, a Parliamentary Private Secretary who was also a Member of Parliament, a Permanent Under Secretary of State for War and a Military Secretary, who was a general.[1]

History

The Secretary of State for War also called the War Secretary was the Secretary of State responsible for the activities of the British army. The position of Secretary of State for War, was created as a Cabinet post in 1794 and as the political head of the British army, and originally only concerned with only military operations. Administration and financial management for the army lay with the Secretary at War as head of the War office. the office holder would later became responsible for the War Office and the administration of the Army in 1854.[2] In 1801 the post was renamed Secretary of State for War and the Colonies.[3] In 1854 the position of Secretary of State for War was re-instated this office absorbed the responsibilities of the Secretary at War and became the new head of the War Office . In 1946, the three posts of Secretary of State for War, First Lord of the Admiralty, and Secretary of State for Air became formally subordinated to that of Minister of Defence. In 1964 the War Office along with the other two service ministry's the Air Ministry and Department of Admiralty were absorbed into the (MOD). They became ministerial service departments in the new organisation, the Army Department, the Navy department and the Air Department. This post along with the other cabinet level ministers were renamed and became junior ministers in charge of the service departments in the new organisation.[4]

Office Holders

Name Entered office Left office
Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville 11 July 1794 17 March 1801
Henry Pelham-Clinton, 5th Duke of Newcastle 12 June 1854 30 January 1855
Fox Maule Ramsay, 11th Earl of Dalhousie 8 February 1855 21 February 1858
Jonathan Peel 26 February 1858 11 June 1859
Hon. Sidney Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Lea 18 June 1859 22 July 1861
Sir George Cornewall Lewis, 2nd Baronet 23 July 1861 13 April 1863
The Earl de Grey]] 28 April 1863 16 February 1866
The Marquess of Hartington 16 February 1866 26 June 1866
Jonathan Peel 6 July 1866 8 March 1867
Sir John Pakington, Bt 8 March 1867 1 December 1868
Edward Cardwell 9 December 1868 17 February 1874
Gathorne Hardy 21 February 1874 2 April 1878
Hon. Frederick Stanley 2 April 1878 21 April 1880
Hugh Childers 28 April 1880 16 December 1882
The Marquess of Hartington 16 December 1882 9 June 1885
W. H. Smith 24 June 1885 21 January 1886
The Viscount Cranbrook 21 January 1886 6 February 1886
Henry Campbell-Bannerman 6 February 1886 20 July 1886
William Henry Smith 3 August 1886 14 January 1887
Hon. Edward Stanhope 14 January 1887 11 August 1892
Henry Campbell-Bannerman 18 August 1892 21 June 1895
The Marquess of Lansdowne 4 July 1895 12 November 1900
Hon. St John Brodrick 12 November 1900 6 October 1903
H. O. Arnold-Forster 6 October 1903 4 December 1905
Richard Haldane, 1st Viscount Haldane 10 December 1905 12 June 1912
J. E. B. Seely 12 June 1912 30 March 1914
H. H. Asquith 30 March 1914 5 August 1914
Horatio Kitchener, 1st Earl Kitchener of Khartoum 5 August 1914 5 June 1916
David Lloyd George 6 June 1916 5 December 1916
Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby 10 December 1916 18 April 1918
Alfred Milner, 1st Viscount Milner 18 April 1918 10 January 1919
Winston Spencer Churchill 10 January 1919 13 February 1921
Sir Laming Worthington-Evans, 1st Baronet 13 February 1921 19 October 1922
Edward Stanley, 17th Earl of Derby 24 October 1922 22 January 1924
Stephen Walsh 22 January 1924 3 November 1924
Sir Laming Worthington-Evans, 1st Baronet 6 November 1924 4 June 1929
Thomas Shaw 7 June 1929 24 August 1931
Robert Crewe-Milnes, 1st Marquess of Crewe 25 August 1931 5 November 1931
Douglas Hogg, 1st Viscount Hailsham 5 November 1931 7 June 1935
The Viscount Halifax 7 June 1935 22 November 1935
Duff Cooper 22 November 1935 28 May 1937
Leslie Hore-Belisha, 1st Baron Hore-Belisha 28 May 1937 5 January 1940
Hon. Oliver Stanley 5 January 1940 11 May 1940
Anthony Eden 11 May 1940 22 December 1940
David Margesson, 1st Viscount Margesson 22 December 1940 22 February 1942
Sir P. J. Grigg 22 February 1942 26 July 1945
Jack Lawson 3 August 1945 4 October 1946
Frederick Bellenger 4 October 1946 7 October 1947
Manny Shinwell 7 October 1947 28 February 1950
John Strachey 28 February 1950 26 October 1951
Antony Head 31 October 1951 18 October 1956
Hon. John Hare 18 October 1956 6 January 1958
Christopher Soames 6 January 1958 27 July 1960
John Profumo 27 July 1960 5 June 1963
Joseph Godber 27 June 1963 21 October 1963
James Ramsden 21 October 1963 1 April 1964

Footnotes

  1. Archives, The National. "Senior Cabinet posts". www.nationalarchives.gov.uk. Kew, London: National Archives UK. Retrieved 13 September 2019.
  2. National Archives UK
  3. National Archives UK
  4. National Archives UK

Bibliography

  1. Archives, The National. "Senior Cabinet Posts". www.nationalarchives.gov.uk. Kew, London: National Archives UK. Retrieved 13 September 2019.