Julian Byng, 1st Viscount Byng of Vimy

Field Marshal Julian Hedworth George Byng, 1st Viscount Byng of Vimy, GCB, GCMG, MVO (11 September 1862 – 6 June 1935) was a British Army officer who served as Governor General of Canada, the 12th since Canadian Confederation.


The Viscount Byng of Vimy

12th Governor General of Canada
In office
2 August 1921  5 August 1926
MonarchGeorge V
Prime MinisterCanadian
  Arthur Meighen
  W. L. M. King
British
  David Lloyd George
  Bonar Law
  Stanley Baldwin
  Ramsay MacDonald
Preceded byThe Duke of Devonshire
Succeeded byThe Viscount Willingdon
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Personal details
Born
Julian Hedworth George Byng

(1862-09-11)11 September 1862
Wrotham Park, Hertfordshire, England
Died6 June 1935(1935-06-06) (aged 72)
Thorpe Hall, Essex, England
Spouse(s)Evelyn Byng, Viscountess Byng of Vimy
ProfessionOfficer
Signature
Military career
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Service/branchBritish Army
Years of service1879–1919
RankField Marshal
Commands heldThird Army
Canadian Corps
XVII Corps
IX Corps
British Troops in Egypt
1st Cavalry Brigade
2nd Cavalry Brigade
10th Royal Hussars
South African Light Horse
Battles/warsMahdist War
  Battles of El Teb
  Battle of Tamai
Second Boer War
First World War
  First Battle of Ypres
  Gallipoli Campaign
  Battle of Vimy Ridge
  Battle of Cambrai
  Hundred Days Offensive
AwardsKnight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George
Member of the Royal Victorian Order
Mentioned in Despatches (8)

Known to friends as "Bungo", Byng was born to a noble family at Wrotham Park in Hertfordshire, England and educated at Eton College, along with his brothers. Upon graduation, he received a commission as a militia officer and saw service in Egypt and Sudan before enrolling in the Staff College at Camberley. There, he befriended individuals who would be his contemporaries when he attained senior rank in France. Following distinguished service during the First World War—specifically, with the British Expeditionary Force in France, in the Battle of Gallipoli, as commander of the Canadian Corps at Vimy Ridge, and as commander of the British Third Army—Byng was elevated to the peerage in 1919. In 1921, King George V, on the recommendation of Prime Minister David Lloyd George, appointed him to replace the Duke of Devonshire as Canada's governor general, a post he occupied until the Viscount Willingdon succeeded him in 1926. Byng proved to be popular with Canadians due to his war leadership, though his stepping directly into political affairs became the catalyst for widespread changes to the role of the Crown in all of the British Dominions.

After his viceregal tenure, Byng returned to the UK to be appointed Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis and was promoted within the peerage to become Viscount Byng of Vimy. Three years after attaining the rank of field marshal, he died at his home, Thorpe Hall on 6 June 1935.