Cecil Vivian Usborne

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Cecil Vivian Usborne
Born 17 May 1880
Died 31 January 1951 (1951-02-01) (aged 70)
Allegiance United Kingdom United Kingdom
Service/branch Naval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg Royal Navy
Rank Vice-Admiral
Awards Companion of the Order of the Bath
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George

Vice-Admiral Cecil Vivian Usborne, CB, CMG (17 May 1880 – 31 January 1951) was a high-ranking officer in the British Royal Navy. He served as the Director of Naval Intelligence between 1930 and 1932. His son Henry Usborne was a Member of Parliament 1945-59.[1]

Naval career

Usborne entered the navy as an Acting sub-lieutenant. He was confirmed in this rank in July 1899,[2] and promoted to lieutenant in January 1900.[3] He was further promoted to commander in July 1912,[4] and a captain before 1918. He became Deputy Director of Naval Ordnance in January 1919 and Deputy Director of Gunnery and Anti-Aircraft Warfare in August 1922.[5]

In April 1928 he was appointed a Naval Aide de Camp to the King[6] and promoted to rear-admiral.[7] He served as the Director of Naval Intelligence between 1930 and 1932.[5] Promotion to vice-admiral came in January 1933.[8]

He was brought back into the Navy during the Second World War as Naval Adviser to the First Sea Lord to develop anti-U-boat weapons. As his assistant he employed Edward Terrell who had developed Plastic Armour.

Usborne was also Captain of the Tactical School, Portsmouth.[1]


After service during the First World War, he was appointed a Commander of the Greek Order of the Redeemer by Alexander, King of the Hellenes in April 1918,[9] a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) by King George V in June 1918,[10] and an Officer of the French Légion d′honneur in May 1919.[11] In June 1930 he was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB)[12]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Vice-Admiral Cecil Vivian Usborne". The Usborne Family. Retrieved 9 July 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. The London Gazette: no. 27236. p. 6180. 9 October 1900.
  3. The London Gazette: no. 27308. p. 2858. 26 April 1901.
  4. The London Gazette: no. 28623. p. 4748. 2 July 1912.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Senior Royal Navy appointments" (PDF). Retrieved 14 November 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. The London Gazette: no. 33376. p. 2741. 17 April 1928.
  7. The London Gazette: no. 33378. p. 2900. 24 April 1928.
  8. The London Gazette: no. 33900. p. 127. 6 January 1933.
  9. The London Gazette: no. 30616. p. 4265. 6 April 1918.
  10. The London Gazette: no. 30723. p. 6530. 3 June 1918.
  11. The London Gazette: no. 31360. p. 6505. 27 May 1919.
  12. The London Gazette: no. 3475. p. 2858. 3 June 1930.
  • Terrell, Edward (1958). Admiralty brief: the story of inventions that contributed to victory in the Battle of the Atlantic. Harrap.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
Military offices
Preceded by
Barry Domvile
Director of Naval Intelligence
Succeeded by
Gerald Dickens