|Bird||Spencer Godfrey||Major||BIRD, SPENCER GODFREY, Major, was born 5 January 1854, son of the Reverend Godfrey Bird (Rector of Great Wigborough, Colchester, Essex) and of Sarah Jane, his wife. He was educated at Haileybury, and joined the Militia (West Essex) 28 February 1871, being commissioned in the 102nd Regiment 28 February 1874, as Lieutenant; was Adjutant, 102nd Foot, 7 August 1875 to 11 March, 1881, and became Captain, Royal Dublin Fusiliers, 15 August 1883. He was Adjutant, Auxiliary Forces, 1 October 1886, to 24 October 1889, and became Major 21 May 1892. Major Bird served in the South African War, with the 2nd Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers, 1899 to 1902; was present in operations in Natal, 1899, including actions at Talana and Lombard's Kop. He was in command of the battalion at Talana Hill and the retirement on Ladysmith, and was Second-in-Command during the remainder of the campaign, taking part in the operations in the Orange Free State, February to May 1900. Operations in the Transvaal, west of Pretoria, July to 29 November 1900. He was afterwards Commandant at Krugersdorp. He was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 8 February 1901 (Sir G S White, 2 December 1899; Sir R H Buller, 9 November 1900), and London Gazette, 10 September 1901]; received the Queen's Medal with four clasps; the King's Medal with two clasps, and was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 27 September 1901]: "Spencer Godfrey Bird, Major, Royal Irish Regiment. In recognition of services during the operations in South Africa". The Insignia were presented by the King 24 October 1902. He became Lieutenant Colonel 7 June, 1902; was given the Brevet of Colonel 7 June, 1905, and retired 7 July 1906. Colonel Bird volunteered for service in the European War, and was called up in October 1914. He commanded the 15th Battalion Royal Fusiliers (Kitchener's Army), at Dover and Shoreham, and again at Dover. He proceeded to France in December 1915, to visit the trenches and see special requirements for training men before going out. He was Secretary to the Oriental Club. Colonel Bird was a keen cricketer. He married, in 1880, Mary, daughter of W C Macready, Ceylon Civil Service, and they had one son and one daughter. |
DSO, QSA (4) CC Tal OFS Trans, KSA (2), BWM, Regimental Medal 1906. National Army Museum 1995.
Source: DSO recipients (VC and DSO Book)
|Royal Irish Regiment|