|Biographical Note||General Sir Cecil Frederick Nevil Macready, 1st Baronet, GCMG, KCB, PC (Ire) was a founding member of the Commission and one of the individuals personally responsible for its existence. |
He was born on 7 May 1862 in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
In 1881, Macready was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Gordon Highlanders following the completion of his training at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. In 1887, he married Sophia Geraldine Atkin of Ledington, Co. Cork. From 1891 to 1914, he rose up the ranks from Captain (1891) to Major (1899), Lieutenant Colonel (1900), Colonel (1903), and eventually Major General (1910). In 1914, appointed Adjutant-General to the British Expeditionary Force.
In September 1915, Macready recommended to the War Office to transfer control of the Fabian Ware’s Graves Registration Committee from the Red Cross to the British Army. In February 1916, the Graves Registration Committee incorporated into the British Army as the Directorate of Graves Registration & Enquiries. Macready was later prompted to Lieutenant-General and appointed Adjutant-General to the Forces at the War Office. Between 1916 and 1917, Macready helped Sir Fabian Ware draft proposals for an 'Imperial Commission for the Care of Soldiers Graves' and oversaw the creation of the Imperial War Graves Commission on 21 May 1917, when he was appointed as one of the eight unofficial Commissioners.
In 1918, Macready was promoted to the rank of General and was Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis until 1920.
Between 1923 and 1938, he was a Member of the Anglo-French Committee and took part in the last meeting of the Committee held in Paris in November 1938. He unveiled the Loos Memorial on 4 August 1930, and the tablets erected in Boulogne and St. Omer Cathedrals in 1927 and 1929
In 1924, Macready published his two-volume memoirs, the 'Annals of an Active Life'. He also held several other decorations in his lifetime: 1st Baronete (1923); P.C. (Ire) (1920); G.C.M.G. (1918); K.C.B. (1919); K.C.M.G. (1915); C.B. (1906) and (1911); LL. D.(Hon.)
Sir Nevil Macready died on 9 January 1946, aged 83, and is buried in the Royal Hospital Cemetery in Brookwood, Surrey.