Essex Regiment & Essex Militia History

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Major-General Francis Ventris

Francis Ventris was born in 1857 as the second son of Rev Edward Favell Ventris who was vicar of West Mersea, Essex.

After education at Newport Grammar School, Francis joined the 44th East Essex Regiment as a Lieutenant on 11 February 1875. He was promoted to Captain on 5 November 1881,Major on 16 December 1883 and Brevet Lt-Colonel on 15 June 1885.

In 1883 he married Helen Maud Ventris who was the daughter of Major-General Horatio  Davies.

Ventris served with distinction in the Nile Expedition in 1884/5 where he was mentioned in dispatches, was awarded the Khedives Star Medal and made a brevet Lt-Colonel.

He also served with the Egyptian Field Force before attending the Staff College in 1890.

From 1895 to 1897 he served as Assistant Adjutant General in India and from 1897 to 1902 was Brigadier General at Bombay.

Ventris continued foreign service when her served from 1903 to 1903 as Major General commanding the area of North China.

At the start of World War One he given the command of 25 Division for its training phase in the UK and in 1915 he took over as GOC of the armed forces in China which post he held until he retired in 1920.

During the World War his youngest son was killed in action in France aged 18 years.

On retirement he moved to St Leonards in Sussex where he lived until his death in January 1929 aged 71 years.