Hilary Aidan Saint George Saunders M.C. ( January 14th, 1898 - December 16th, 1951 ) was born in Clifton ( near Bristol, South West, England ). The son of G.W. St. George Saunders of Brighton ( East Sussex, England ), he was educated at Windlesham House School, Downside School ( Stratton - on - the - Fosse, Somerset, England ) and Balliol College ( Oxford, Oxfordshire, England ).
During the First World War, he commissioned into the Welsh Guards, and served with 1st Battalion ( holding the rank of Lieutenant ) on the Western Front. He was awarded the Military Cross for an action on November 6th, 1918, near Bavay ( Nord, France ).
After the war, Hilary St. G. Saunders became a writer, and went by several noms - de - plume : Francis Beeding ( writing in tandem with John Palmer ), Barum Browne ( with Geoffrey Dennis ), Cornelius Cofyn ( with John deVere Loder ), David Pilgrim ( with John Palmer ) and John Somers ( with John Palmer ).
A chronicler of the Second World War and biographer of Robert Baden - Powell ( 1857 - 1941 ), he was a recorder on Admiral Mountbatten's Staff during the second World War. He became known during the war for his books and pamphlets, The Battle of Britain, Bomber Command, Coastal Command, etc..., which he wrote officially and anonymously for the Government, and subsequently for The Red Beret ( 1949 ) and The Green Beret ( 1950 ). A wartime visit to the United States for the Ministry of Information was the subject of his Pioneers ! O Pioneers ! The Sleeping Bacchus ( 1944 ) is his scarce first and only novel, the story of an art robbery.
He was also a postwar commentator on the scouting movements during the Second World War, chronicled in The Left Handshake ( written in 1948 ). Hilary St. G. Saunders was Librarian of the House of Commons Library from 1946 - 1950, when he retired because of ill health.
( source : Wikipedia )