Vivian Ronald Brandon

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Captain (retired) Vivian Ronald Brandon, (1 April, 1882 – 3 January, 1944) served in the Royal Navy. An expert surveyor who was fluent in German, and with some French and Spanish, he was well suited for intelligence work.

Life & Career

Born in Hammersmith and raised by his mother, Brandon gained eight months' time on passing out of Britannia.

He passed out of Britannia in December, 1897 ranked second of the sixty-four cadets who passed out, with 1901 marks.[1]

Brandon was awarded the Ryder Memorial Prize for 1901 for placing highest in the examination in French at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich.

He qualified as an Interpreter in German.

Brandon was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on 15 July, 1902. He gained the second-highest number of marks in navigation, missing the Beaufort Testimonial by two marks.

On 29 May 1903, Brandon gained a fourth-class certificate as an assistant surveyor. By 1909, successive examinations would grant him a first-class certificate, and Commander Walter of Merlin would write in December 1907 that Brandon's knowledge of surveying was "far above average."

On 24 January, 1910, Brandon was placed on the books of President for leave to Germany, where he faced four years of confinement at the fortress of Glatz on a charge of espionage under the Imperial Law of July 1893. He and Captain Bernard Frederick Trench, R.M.L.I. had been arrested near Borkum, where they had been collecting information about fortifications, guns, searchlights, and water depths for the Admiralty. The trial was held in Leipzig.[2]

He was incarcerated from August 1910 to 21 May, 1913. Upon his return, the Board of Admiralty decided to let him keep his pay and time while he was under German incarceration.

Brandon was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander on 15 July, 1910.

Brandon was promoted to the rank of Commander on 31 December, 1914.

Brandon was promoted to the rank of Acting Captain on 22 July, 1918.

Post-War

Brandon was placed on the Retired List at his own request with the rank of Captain (retired) on 1 December, 1927.

See Also

Bibliography

  • The Espionage Trial At Leipzig. The Times (London, England), Wednesday, Dec 21, 1910; pg. 10; Issue 39461.

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Robert W. Glennie
Naval Assistant to the Hydrographer of the Navy
12 Jun, 1906 – 26 Sep, 1906
Succeeded by
Lewis F. Blackburn
Preceded by
Philip C. Pearson
Naval Assistant to the Hydrographer of the Navy
18 Mar, 1909 – 11 May, 1909
Succeeded by
Vivian R. Brandon
Preceded by
Vivian R. Brandon
Naval Assistant to the Hydrographer of the Navy
11 Jul, 1910 – 27 Jan, 1911
Succeeded by
Robert W. Glennie
Preceded by
Bernard E. Prichard
Captain of H.M.S. Bramble
17 Jan, 1914 – 5 Aug, 1914
Succeeded by
John E. P. Bickford
Preceded by
Raymond A. Nugent
Assistant Director of Naval Intelligence Division
22 Aug, 1918 – 15 Apr, 1919
Succeeded by
Edward O. Cochrane
Preceded by
Gilbert G. P. Hewett
Captain of H.M.S. Odin
Feb, 1920 – 24 Sep, 1920
Succeeded by
?
Preceded by
George F. L. L. Page
Captain of H.M.S. Cyclamen
24 Sep, 1920 – 29 May, 1923
Succeeded by
Guy L. Coleridge

Footnotes

  1. "Naval & Military Intelligence" The Times (London, England), Thursday, Dec 16, 1897; pg. 7; Issue 35388.
  2. The Espionage Trial At Leipzig. The Times.