Major General Melvin was born in Edinburgh in 1955 and educated at Daniel Stewart’s College. Joining the British Army in 1974, following two years at Welbeck College, he was commissioned into the Royal Engineers in 1975. He read engineering at Cambridge University. During his early military career he served in Germany, Kenya and in Belize.
Mungo attended the German armed forces command and staff college in Hamburg (1986-88); commanded 28 Engineer Regiment in Hameln, Germany, (1995-96); was Chief Engineer of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (2000-02); and led the Army’s support command and British Forces Germany (2006-09).
He has served on operations in Northern Ireland, the Middle East (First Gulf War) and the Balkans. He has a long involvement in military concepts and doctrine and in professional military education, having taught at the Army Staff College, the Joint Services Command and Staff College and at the Royal College of Defence Studies.
Following his retirement in 2011, Mungo Melvin has advised the House of Commons Defence Committee on military and strategic matters, the Army on training and the First World War centenary commemorations, and business on the application of leadership and decision-making techniques such as Mission Command. He lectures on strategy, leadership and military history.
From 2012 until 18 February 2017, Mungo was President of the British Commission for Military History. He is a Senior Visiting Research Fellow of the War Studies Department of King’s College London, a Senior Associate Fellow of the Royal United Services Institution (RUSI) and a Senior Associate Fellow of the Institute for Statecraft. In October 2016 he was appointed Chairman of the newly re-established Royal Engineers Historical Society.
Mungo’s written works include Manstein: Hitler’s Greatest General, published by Weidenfeld & Nicholson in 2010, which was awarded a prize for best military biography by the U.S. Society for Military History in 2012. His major new study, Sevastopol’s Wars: Crimea from Potemkin to Putin, is due to be published on 20 April 2017. He is editor of the British Army Battlefield Guide to the Western Front (1914-1918) and is a regular contributor to the RUSI Journal. He lectures regularly to a range of military and civilian audiences on a wide variety of military historical and contemporary strategic issues.
Mungo speaks German well, and reads military French and Russian to varying levels.
Follow Mungo on Twitter at https://twitter.com/MungoMelvin