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Biographical entry Miles, Stanley (1911 - 1987)

CStJ 1966; CB 1967; MRCS and FRCS 1971; MSc Sheffield 1934; MB ChB 1936; MD 1955; DTM&H 1949; FRCP 1971.

14 August 1911
9 July 1987
Military surgeon


Stanley Miles was born on 14August 1911 in Sheffield the son of Thomas Currier Miles, a company director and his wife Florence Edna, née Law. He went to school at King Edward VII School before entering Sheffield University, where he qualified in 1936. After house appointments in Sheffield he joined the Royal Navy in which he served for thirty years, rising to the rank of Surgeon Rear-Admiral. He served in China, West Africa and with the Pacific and Mediterranean fleets and became a specialist in chemical defence. In 1955 he was made senior specialist in physiology and in 1957 he was awarded the Royal College of Surgeons' Gilbert Blane Medal for his services to naval medicine. Two years later, in 1959, he was appointed director of medical research at the Royal Naval Medical School at Alverstoke. His duties included medical officer-in-charge of submarines and, in 1962, he published Underwater medicine. He was involved in the investigation of producing oxygen by the electrolysis of seawater. In the summer of 1962 Miles delivered a lighthearted exposition to a BMA gathering in Belfast on how to live and be happy in a nuclear submarine during prolonged periods at sea. He pointed out the advances being made in dehydrated food and that the supply people "are well on the way to producing a satisfactory dehydrated beer". In 1966 he commanded the Royal Naval Hospital in Plymouth and was appointed Honorary Physician to the Queen.

On his retirement from the Royal Navy he became Dean of Postgraduate Studies in the University of Manchester and developed the International Trauma Foundation which has led to the counselling of trauma victims. The non-professional division, Friends of the Injured, consists of lay people who visit accident cases following discharge from hospital in order to offer general encouragement and practical help. He was a pioneer in this field and as well as helping to develop the Medical Council for Accident Prevention he took an active part in life saving, sub-aqua diving and sports medicine. In 1939 he married Mary Rose and they had a son Tim and a daughter Pam. He died on 9 July 1987 survived by his wife and children and their families.

Sources used to compile this entry: [The Times 17 July 1987; Daily Telegraph 17 July 1987; Lancet 1987, 2, 347].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England