General Sir Thomas Kelly-Kenny GCB GCVO 1902 - 1914

Born on 27th February 1840, General Kelly-Kenny was appointed Ensign without purchase in the 1st Battalion on 2nd February 1858 and was ADC to the General Officer Commanding Cape of Good Hope from 15th November 1859 to January 1860. He was further appointed Lieutenant by purchase on 12th October 1860 and Captain by purchase on 20th July 1866. He was DAQMG (acting) in Bombay from 25th May 1869 to April 1870.

Promoted Colonel on 22nd September 1887 he was AAG and QMG from that date until 30th June 1889. Continuing in senior appointments, he was AAG and QMG, NE District from 1st July 1889 to 21st September 1892. Later he became AAG Aldershot from 28th December 1893 to 12th March 1896.

Maintaining continuity, he gained successive and advancing appointments until becoming Adjutant General to the Forces, HQ of the Army on 1st October 1901.

His career was not entirely administrative. He served in the China War of 1860, seeing action at Sinho and at the capture of Tangku and the Taku Forts. He also took part in the Abyssinian Expedition 1867 - 1868 with the Transport Train. In both these campaigns and expeditions he was Mentioned in Despatches and received the appropriate medals.

In the South African War of 1899 - 1901 he was in command of the 6th Division and afterwards of sections of line communications between the Orange and Vaal Rivers. He was involved in other actions, including those of the relief of Kimberley and the operations at Paardeburg, Poplar Grave and Driefontaine.

He was twice Mentioned in Despatches and received the Queen’s South African Medal with four clasps. Promoted General, he died in command of The Queen’s in 1914, aged 74.

© The Queen's Royal Surrey Regimental Association.