Henry Gurney

Henry Gurney

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Henry Gurney

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Sir Henry Lovell Goldsworthy Gurney KCMG K.St.J. (27 June 1898–6 October 1951) was a British official who was assassinated by communist insurgents during the Malayan Emergency.


Gurney was born on 27 June 1898, in Poughill, near Bude in Cornwall.A. J. Stockwell, ‘’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, October 2006 accessed 21 November 2007 He was the son of G.G.H. Gurney and Florence Gurney. He was educated at Winchester College and University College, Oxford. He married Lady Isabel Lowther Weir in 1924 and they had two sons, Michael and Peter.


He served in the King's Royal Rifle Corps from 1917 to 1920. He joined the Colonial Service and was posted as the Colonial Servant in Kenya, (1921). He also posted as the Assistant Colonial Secretary in Jamaica, (1935), Chief Secretary to the Conference of East Africa Governors, (1938–1944), Colonial Secretary in Gold Coast (1944–1946), Chief Secretary to the Palestine Mandate Government (1946–1948). Gurney became British High Commissioner in Malaya on 13 September 1948.

In the 1947 New Year Honours, he was promoted to Knight Commander (KCMG) of the Order of St Michael and St George, which is the second highest rank in this order — when he represented the British Government as the Chief Secretary to the Palestine Mandate. He had previously been a Companion (CMG) in the...
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