W. B. R. King

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Professor W.B.R. King
Born William Bernard Robinson King
(1889-11-12)12 November 1889
West Burton, Yorkshire[citation needed]
Died 23 January 1963(1963-01-23) (aged 73)
Institutions University of Cambridge
British Geological Survey
Alma mater Jesus College, Cambridge[1]
Notable awards Murchison Medal (1951)
Fellow of the Royal Society[1]

William Bernard Robinson King, OBE MC FRS[1] (12 November 1889 – 23 January 1963) was a British geologist.


King was educated at the University of Cambridge graduating a first-class Honours degree in Geology in 1912


He joined the British Geological Survey and distinguished himself on field studies in Wales. In 1914 he was commissioned as a second-lieutenant in the Territorial Army and in 1915 was rapidly trained as a hydrologist and sent to France to assist the Chief Engineer of the British Expeditionary Force establish potable water supplies from boreholes.

The most senior of the three military geologists at the start of World War II, Major King was sent to France in 1939.[2] where he later advised on suitable sites for airfields and the D-Day landings. He was awarded a Military Cross in 1940.

In 1943 he became Woodwardian Professor of Geology at the University of Cambridge.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society[1] in 1949. His candidacy document read


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Shotton, F. W. (1963). "William Bernard Robinson King. 1889-1963". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 9: 171. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1963.0009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. http://www.geolsoc.org.uk/webdav/site/GSL/shared/pdfs/specialist%20and%20regional%20groups/hogg/hogg36.pdf
  3. http://www2.royalsociety.org/DServe/dserve.exe?dsqIni=Dserve.ini&dsqApp=Archive&dsqDb=Catalog&dsqSearch=RefNo==%27EC%2F1949%2F10%27&dsqCmd=Show.tcl

Further reading

  • Military Geology in War and Peace Edited by James R. Underwood, Peter L. Guth