Gallantry and Distinguished Service


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem, British War and Victory Medals, Coronation Medal King George VI to Professor Francis O’Brien Ellison, Born in Ireland in 1878, he received his Medical Degrees at Trinity College Dublin in 1906. Appointed to hospitals in  London  before the outbreak of war, he served as Captain, Royal Army Medical Corps, commissioned in 1917, he served in Italy in 1918. Appointed Lecturer at the Government Medical School in Cairo after leaving the Army, he was appointed Professor and Registrar of Physiology at the Ceylon Medical School 1923 until he retired in 1938. Author of a textbook on Physiology in 1910, he was a keen amateur Astronomer and published a book on Astronomy in the Tropics and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. Appointed an Officer of St John of Jerusalem in 1936, he returned to England in 1938 and died in Christchurch, Dorset in 1966 aged 87 years.

Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem

Unnamed as awarded

British War and Victory Medals

Capt F O’B Ellison

King George VI Coronation Medal 1937

Unnamed as issued

The group mounted as originally worn.

With copy Medal Index Card, copy Coronation GVI Medal roll entry, obituary below and other details from on line sources.

Obituary from The British Medical Journal 5th November 1966 page 1144

Professor Francis O’Brien Ellison was born 22nd November 1878 and received his medical education at Trinity College, Dublin graduating MB ChB, BAO in 1906 and later proceeding MD. After an early appointment to the Professor of Physiology at Trinity College Dublin , he came to London where he held appointments as demonstrator in Physiology and later as Assistant Radiographer at St Mary’s Hospital Medical School, Paddington and Radiographer at St John’s Hospital, Lewisham. After the First World War he was appointed Lecturer in Experimental Physiology at the Government Medical School in Cairo, and in 1923 he was appointed the first Professor of Physiology, and Registrar of the Ceylon Medical College in Colombo, a post he held until he reached the retirement age of 60 in 1938 when he returned to England.

A colleague writes –

“Dr Ellison was appointed the first Professor of Psychology of the Ceylon Medical College in September 1923 by the Secretary of State for the Colonies, he was the first holder of the posts of Professor and Registrar….Ellison was Irish and enjoyed a good joke. Mainly owing to his great ability, energy and enthusiasm, the construction of a three story Physiology Block and offices was expedited. Behind an apparently stern and severe exterior was a king and generous heart. Professor Ellison was a competent histologist who’s technical skill was reflected in some of his superb preparations which are even today in perfect condition. His hobby was optics and he spent his free time in the departmental workshop constructing telescopes, which he installed at his residence. Many of his observatory reports have been published and he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. His wife predeceased him and he had no children”.

Francis O’Brien Ellison married in Hampstead, London in 1914. Commissioned Temporary Lieutenant Royal Army Medical Corps 20th August 1917 (London Gazette 24th September 1917 page 9852), promoted Temporary Captain 24th August 1918, he served in Italy from 20th July 1918. Author of Textbook of Experimental Physiology in 1910 and Amateur Astronomer in the Tropics, a Member of the Physiological Society and British Medical Association.  Appointed Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem London Gazette 26th June 1936 page 4058, awarded the King George VI Coronation Medal whilst Registrar, Ceylon Medical School. He retired to Pineapple Cottage, Burton on Sea, Hampshire and died in Christchurch Hospital 13th September 1966 aged 87 years.

First time on the market.

GVF  £275 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Member of the British Empire (MBE) Second Type (Civil), 1939/45 Defence Medal, King George VI Coronation Medal 1937, Volunteer Medical Services Long Service Medal with extra Five Year Long Service clasp to The Honourable Miss Kathleen Whalley Smith (The Hon Mrs Howie), born in Salford, Lancashire in 1903, she was the daughter of Lord Frederick Henry Smith Baron Colwyn, a Banker, Manufacturer, Railways Director and Liberal Politician. An Architect, she served as  Commandant, British Red Cross, Denbighshire and Deputy Director Civil Defence Worker’s Health Department, Joint War Organisation of the British Red Cross Society and Order of St John during the Second World War, awarded the MBE for these services. In 1945 she married a London based Accountant in Chelsea, the pair retired to Sway, New Forest, she died in 1990 and her husband in 1995.

Member of the British Empire (MBE) 2nd type Civil

Unnamed as awarded

1939/45 Defence Medal

Unnamed as issued

King George VI Coronation Medal 1937

Unnamed as issued

Voluntary Medical Services Long Service Medal with Bar for a further Five Years Service

The Hon Mrs Kathleen Whalley Howie

The group mounted as originally worn with tunic ribbon brooch.

Research details from on line sources listed here, copy Coronation Medal roll entry and header.

Kathleen Whalley Smith was born in Salford, Lancashire 18th January 1903, the daughter of Lord Frederick Henry Smith First Baron Colwyn and his wife Elizabeth Ann Savage.

Frederick Henry Smith, 1st Baron Colwyn PC DL (24 January 1859 – 26 January 1946), known as Sir Frederick Smith, 1st Baronet, from 1912 to 1917, was a British  manufacturer, investor and banking executive. He was an influential Liberal figure in Manchester politics for many years. Smith was a rubber and cotton factory owner, deputy chairman of  Martins bank (23 years after his death the 700 branches were acquired by Barcalys Bank) and a Director of several railway companies. In 1917 he served as Sheriff of Carnarvonshire. He was created a Baronet, of Colwyn Bay in the County of Denbigh, in 1912. In the 1917 Birthday Honours he was raised to the peerage as Baron Colwyn, of Colwyn Bay in the County of Denbigh. In 1924, he was admitted to the Privy Council. Lord Colwyn married Elizabeth Anne, daughter of Hamilton Savage, in 1882. They had two sons and five daughters. She died in 1945, Colwyn died in January 1946, aged 87. His eldest son predeceased him, and the Barony was inherited by Lord Colwyn’s grandson Frederick.

Awarded the Coronation Medal King George VI as Commandant, British Red Cross, Denbighshire.

The Western Mail Newspaper 14th January 1939 page 13 records –

“Lord Colwyn’s daughter Miss Kathleen Whalley Smith has successfully taken up the profession of Architecture and some time ago was elected an Associate Member of the Liverpool Architectural Society one of five (women) in a membership of 200”.

Member of the British Empire London Gazette 9th January 1946 page 304

“The Honourable Kathleen Whalley Smith (The Hon Mrs Howie), Deputy Director Civil Defence Worker’s Health Department Joint War Organisation of the British Red Cross Society and Order of St John”.

She married Robert Cullen Howie a London Based Accountant in Chelsea 22nd September 1945 whilst living in Kensington and died in Sway, New Forrest 11th April 1990, her husband died in 1995.

First time on the market.

GVF & better £450 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished ServiceGallantry and Distinguished ServiceGallantry and Distinguished Service

Military Cross GV with bar for SECOND AWARD unnamed as awarded on investiture pin in fitted presentation case.

Military Cross GV with SECOND AWARD bar

Unnamed as awarded

A particularly fine example on investiture pin in fitted presentation case.

Catch works fine, hinges ok.

Toned

EF £950 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Service Medal GVI, 1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star, Pacific Star, War Medal, Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve GVI 1st type to Leading Signalman Stanley Donald Dix, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve born in Harringay, Edmonton, Middlesex in 1909. Employed as an Insurance Agent he was mobilised on the outbreak of war and joined the requisitioned Southern Railway Paddle Steam Ferry Sandown which was converted to a Minesweeper. Following an arduous winter of sweeping the channel and entrances to south coast ports, Sandown covered the withdrawal of British and allied personnel from Holland before making three trips to Dunkirk, returning 1,861 soldiers. Coming under air attack and bombardment from German shore batteries, she avoided damage and following the end of Operation Dynamo, was returned to Minesweeping duties. Dix was awarded the DSM in July 1940 for his services aboard Sandown, he attended an investiture at Buckingham Palace to receive his award from HM The King 24th March 1942. Demobilised at the end of hostilities, he returned to the Barnet area and died in Hornsey, Middlesex in 1978.

Distinguished Service Medal GVI

LD/X.3186 S D Dix Sig RNVR

1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star, Pacific Star, War Medal

Unnamed as issued

Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve GVI 1st type

X.3186 S D Dix L Sig RNVR

With details extracted from on line and published sources and an original photograph post investiture and postcard of Sandown.

The DSM officially impressed naming (as it should be on early awards).

Stanley Donald Dix was born in Harringay, Edmonton, Middlesex 9th August 1909, the 1911 census records he is 1 year old residing with his father Donald James Dix a Commercial Artist and mother Mabel Caroline at 58 Burgoyne Road, Harringay. He married at St James’s The Great Church, Barnet Ada Dorothy Wheatley a Clerk on 26th March 1932, he stated his occupation as Insurance Agent and address as “Selwyn”, Church Way, Barnet. His brother Hector Montgomery Dix born 21st December 1913 also served in the RNVR and is depicted in the photograph following the investiture outside Buckingham Palace with his brother’s two children. He died in Hornsey, Middlesex in 1978 aged 68 years.

A fairly non-descriptive heading for the award of the Distinguished Service Medal, the UK being under threat of invasion at the time.

Distinguished Service Medal London Gazette 11th July 1940 page 4258 “For good services in the Royal Navy since the outbreak of war”.

Long Service and Good Conduct Medal RNVR awarded 16th August 1944 Medal sent to Commodore RN Barracks Portsmouth for presentation Ref : TNA ADM171/72 page 41.


Gallantry and Distinguished Service
Signalman Stanley Donald Dix (left) his son William, daughter Monica (proudly wearing her father’s DSM) and his brother outside Buckingham Palace following his investiture 
24th March 1942

An early award of the DSM, mainly for Minesweeping work in “the arduous winter of 1939” but his ship and ship’s company went on to distinguish themselves during Operation Dynamo.

Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Paddle Steamer Sandown

Built in 1934 by William Denny & Brothers of Dumbarton for Southern Railway and used as a Portsmouth to Ryde, Isle of Wight passenger ferry with a capacity for 974 passengers. Requisitioned by the Admiralty on 27th September 1939, Sandown went to Thornycroft’s Woolston ship yard in Southampton and was converted for Minesweeping duties. From there she sailed to Dover to become Senior Naval Officer’s ship commanding 10th Flotilla (Commander K M Greig, Royal Navy). Apart from the strenuous Minesweeping work in the first winter of the war, Sandown was involved in covering the evacuation of Dutch ports immediately prior to the Dunkirk evacuation. Commander Greig led the Flotilla away from Dover on 27th May 1940 and they crossed (to Holland) again the next evening.

28th May 1940 at 0200 passed Dunkirk, heavy bombing and machine gunning in progress, anchored off La Panne, sent in all available boats including an ex Belgian Canal Boat and assisted by HMS Calcutta’s boats embarked 600 soldiers under frequent air attacks and transferred to HMS Calcutta. At 1230 the Brighton Belle whilst in company with Sandown struck a wreck off the Gull Light Buoy during an air attack and sank. All the crew and embarked soldiers were rescued by Sandown and Medway Queen, Sub Lieutenant W J Butler RNVR of Sandown was killed and two ratings wounded. At 1430 arrived at Margate and disembarked 210 soldiers, returning to Dover at 1930.

29th May at 0530 proceeded with Gracie Fields to La Panne and anchored off that place at 1430, sent in all boats and embarked 800 soldiers during heavy bombing, had to get under way twice, Gracie Fields reported sinking after air attack off Middel Kerke Buoy, HMS Pangbourne embarking her soldiers and took her in tow. At 2100 Sandown proceeded to Ramsgate with 800 soldiers aboard. At 0500 on 30th May arrived at Ramsgate and disembarked 860 soldiers, proceeding to Dover for coal and ammunition at 2100 Sandown sailed from Dover.

31st May at 0235 anchored off North Goodwins in response to an SOS from the Drifter Golden Gift which was grounded with 250 soldiers aboard. Took off crew and soldiers with motor boat in five trips and at 0645 returned to Ramsgate to disembark them. At 100 proceeded to Bray, shelled by German artillery batteries at Nieuport whilst off Middel Kerke Buoy. At 1430 anchored off Bray and embarked 900 British soldiers. Heavy air attacks and 6 inch shelling throughout the afternoon, had to shift position twice.

1st June arrived at Ramsgate at 0500 and disembarked 800 soldiers, returning to Dover at 0800. Total soldiers returned to England 1,861.

GVF & better £1,450 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Service Medal GVI, 1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star clasp France and Germany, War Medal to Signalman James Lisle, Royal Navy born in Toxteth Park, Liverpool in 1915. Awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for his services aboard HMS Cockatrice part of 18th Mine Sweeping Flotilla (MSF) it was in this capacity that he participated in vital D-Day sweeps on 5th -6th June 1944 prior to the landing craft assault, he describes Cockatrice’s part in these operation, off Gold Beach in an oral history account of his wartime experiences held at the Imperial War Museum (now able to listen on line to his account). Cockatrice later took part in the assault on Walcheren Island in November 1944 and clearing Minefield off the Dutch and Belgian coasts in 1945.

Distinguished Service Medal GVI

Sig J Lisle C/JX.270843

1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star clasp France and Germany, War Medal

Unnamed as issued

With a folder of research including birth and death certificates, extensive copied research, including the recipient’s account of his wartime career. The group mounted as originally worn.

Provenance : Dix Noonan Webb 28th September 2016 Lot 803

James Lisle was born at 37 Barrington Road, Toxteth Park, Liverpool on 7th April 1915, the son of William Lisle a Journeyman / Printer and Line Type Operator and his wife Ada.

As verified by his account of his wartime career – which is held in the Imperial War Museum (Catalogue No. 4765 80/18/1) – he served in the Flower Class corvette HMS Pimpernel, apart of Escort Group B5, on Atlantic convoy duties from mid-1942 to August 1943.

On 17th August 1942, Pimpernel picked up 29 survivors from the British Merchantman Fort la Reine, torpedoed and sunk by U-658 in the windward passage west of Haiti. The following day, she rescued 43 survivors from the Merchantman Empire Bede, which had been torpedoed and damaged by U-553 north of Jamaica; the Empire Bede was finally sunk by gunfire from the corvette. On 6th March 1943, Lisle and his shipmates were involved in another rescue, this time of of 62 men from the American Merchantman Thomas Hooker, which had been damaged by bad weather and abandoned by her crew; the drifting wreck of the Merchantman was found and sunk by the U-653 on the 12th. In his wartime memoirs, Lisle also describes an attack on a U-Boat caught on the surface, which was claimed as possibly destroyed after it crash-dived and was depth-charged.

In August 1943, Lisle joined the Minesweeper HMS Cockatrice of 18th Mine Sweeping Flotilla (MSF) and it was in this capacity that he participated in vital D-Day sweeps on 5th -6th June 1944. He describes Cockatrice’s part in these operation, off Gold Beach, in his wartime memoir:

‘After re-fitting in Aberdeen in May 1944, HMS Cockatrice sailed down the east coast, round the Channel, and dropped anchor in the straits between the Isle of Wight and the mainland, where we joined our own flotilla, the 18th MSF. Here we stayed for several days. On the afternoon of 3rd June 1944, whilst on duty, I received a signal commencing ‘Raise steam and be ready to proceed at 0900.’ It was a long signal and contained full instructions as to the part we were to play in the D-Day landings. A second signal was received to say the whole thing had been postponed 24 hours because of bad weather. On 5th June we received another signal to proceed and this time we got under way. This was it. We formed a screen around the Landing Craft. There was an outer screen of cruisers and a patrol of Battleships.

By dusk we went ahead and proceeded to sweep a path in the direction of the French coast. Two trawlers attached to us were Dan-Layers. These followed astern and laid Dan Buoys marking the outer boundaries of the swept channel to enable Landing Craft to pass safely between them. It was early morning on 6th June as we approached the French coast. We finished the sweep at 0700 and made a rendezvous with the battleship HMS Warspite and two Monitors, Roberts and Erebus. These ships were to bombard the shore prior to the landings. Our job was to protect these ships during the bombardment. First we made a smoke screen, then Radar and Asdic watches. The landings commenced at 0900 and we pretty much had a grandstand view through our binoculars of the whole thing. Cockatrice was to rescue the survivors of HMS Pylades, a Catherine Class Minesweeper, sunk by a torpedo off Normandy on 8th July 1944 … ’

Cockatrice was afterwards engaged at the assault on Walcheren in November 1944, in addition to Minesweeping off the Belgian, Dutch and German coasts in 1945, further operations that would have contributed to the recommendation for Lisle’s award of the DSM.

DSM London Gazette 11 December 1945 page 5992 ‘For distinguished service during the war in Europe.’

James Lisle died in Liverpool on 18th April 1992, aged 77 years, his occupation recorded as “Cashier Retired”.

GVF & better £1,250 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Service Medal GVI, 1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star clasp North Africa 1942-43, Burma Star clasp Pacific, Italy Star, War Medal, Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Royal Navy GVI 1st type to Chief Stoker Thomas George Tutt Murray, Royal Navy born in Southampton 31st July 1905 a Labourer, he entered the Royal Navy as Stoker 2nd Class at Victory II 16th October 1923. Serving aboard HMS Hyperion on the outbreak of war, he joined Victory 1st June 1940 and HMS King George V 1st October 1940, remaining aboard this ship for the remainder of the war. Awarded the DSM in 1946 for distinguished services in the Far East, HMS King George V was awarded the battle honours Atlantic 1941, Bismarck 1941, Arctic 1942-43, Sicily 1943, Okinawa 1945 and Japan 1945, being present at the surrender ceremonies in Tokyo Bay. Discharged to pension 27th February 1946, he died in Southampton in 1994 aged 89 years.

Distinguished Service Medal GVI

CS T G T Murray P/KX.62604

1939/45 Star, Atlantic Star, Africa Star clasp North Africa 1942-43, Burma Star clasp Pacific, Italy Star, War Medal

Unnamed as issued

Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Royal Navy GVI 1st type

K.62604 T G T Murray SPO HMS Hyperion

With copy service records, the group mounted as originally worn.

Thomas George Tutt Murray was born in Southampton 31st July 1905 a Labourer, he entered the Royal Navy as Stoker 2nd Class at Victory II 16th October 1923, rated Stoker 1st Class 22nd October 1924, he subsequently joined HMS Weymouth 1st November 1924, HMS Diomede 1st January 1925, HMS Titania 19th July 1925, HMS Dartmouth 6th November 1926, Victory II 21st December 1926, St Vincent 7th May 1927, HMS Courageous 20th February 1928 where he was advanced to Leading Stoker 18th July 1930. Joining Victory II 19th July 1930, Fisgard 1st November 1930, Victory II 28th February 1931, Dolphin 10th March 1931, HMS Warspite 3rd September 1931, Victory II 8th November 1933, HMS Curacoa 25th November 1933, Victory II 4th September 1934, HMS Revenge 26th September 1934 where he was advanced to Stoker Petty Officer 1st November 1934, Victory II 18th January 1936, HMS Amazon 22nd February 1936, HMS Hyperion 28th November 1936, Victory 1st June 1940, HMS King George V 1st October 1940 where he was rated Chief Stoker 7th January 1941, remaining aboard this ship until the end of hostilities.

Action with the Bismarck

When the German battleship Bismarck along with the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen broke out into the Atlantic Ocean, HMS King George V sailed on 22ns May with the aircraft carrier HMS Victorious and eleven cruisers and destroyers in support of the cruiser patrols off Iceland. King George V was the flagship of Admiral Sir John Tovey, who commanded the force. King George V was still 300 to 400 miles (480 to 640 km) away on the morning of 24th May, when HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Hood engaged both Bismarck and Prinz Eugen. Hood was sunk and Prince of Wales damaged when hit and forced to retire. Bismarck, although damaged, and Prinz Eugen continued south.

The British re-located Bismarck at 10:30 on 26th May, when a Catalina flying boat of RAF Coastal Command sighted her, heading for the French port of Brest. HM Ships Rodney and King George V were still about 125 miles (201 km) away. The aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal was ordered to launch an air attack, and at 22:25 her torpedo bombers, a flight of Fairey Swordfishes damaged Bismarck, slowing her down and jamming her rudder, forcing her to turn back out into the Atlantic, away from the safety of port. At 15:00 Rodney joined King George V and they maintained 22 knots – which was nearly maximum speed for Rodney. King George V had only 32 percent of her fuel left while Rodney had only enough fuel to continue the chase at high speed until 08:00 the following day.

Admiral Tovey signalled his battle plan to Rodney just before sunrise on 27th May; she was free to manœuvre independently as long as she conformed generally to the movements of King George V. Both ships were to close the range to 15,000 yards (14,000 m) as quickly as possible, then turn for broadside fire. At 08:15 the cruiser HMS Norfolk spotted Bismarck and turned away out of range. She soon sighted the other British ships off her starboard quarter, and informed them that Bismarck was roughly 50,000 yards (46,000 m) to the southwest. By 08:43 King George V had Bismarck in sight, at 20,500 yards (18,700 m). Four minutes later Rodney opened fire. King George V followed suit in less than a minute. Bismarck answered almost immediately, straddling Rodney on her second salvo. By 08:59 King George V had closed to 16,000 yards (15,000 m) and all her 14-inch guns were firing; Rodney was firing full 16-inch salvoes. Bismarck concentrated all her remaining guns on King George V, but only an occasional shell came close. At 09:14 King George V, at 12,000 yards (11,000 m), had opened fire with her 5.25-inch guns, and Rodney had moved to 8,500–9,000 yards (7,800–8,200 m).

At 09:27 a shell hitting Bismarck penetrated the hydraulic machinery in turret ‘Anton’ and disabled it, causing the guns to run down to maximum depression. Her topsides were wrecked, and a large fire burned amidships. After firing steadily for over 30 minutes, without any problems, King George V , by 09:27, began having trouble with her main battery, and from that point onward every salvo missed at least one gun due to failures in the safety interlocks for antiflash protection and from ammunition feed jams. At 10:21, with Bismarck silenced and obviously sinking, Admiral Tovey detailed the cruiser HMS Dorsetshire to finish her off with torpedoes. King George V fired 339 x 14 in (354 mm) and over 700 x 5.25 in (133 mm) shells during the action. As both Rodney and King George V were low on fuel they returned to port at 19 knots (35 km/h), escorted by eleven destroyers to guard against German air or submarine attack. The next day, after the escort was reduced to three destroyers, four German aircraft did attack but scored no hits. Both King George V and Rodney returned to port safely, but the destroyer HMS Mashona, sent ahead to refuel, was bombed and sunk.

Distinguished Service Medal London Gazette 11th June 1946 page 2884 For distinguished services in the Far East aboard HMS King George V

Long Service and Good Conduct Medal awarded 5th September 1939.

Discharged from the Royal Navy to pension 27th February 1946, he died in Southampton in 1994.

First time on the market.

GVF & better £1,750 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished ServiceGallantry and Distinguished Service

Military Medal GV to Lance Corporal George Messer, 1st Battalion Welsh Guards from Brecon. A founding member of the last of the Guards Regiments to be formed by order of HM King George V on 26th February 1915 (Regimental number 252). The 1st Battalion landed in France 17th August 1915 and saw their first action at Loos in September 1915. Messer was wounded in action probably when his Battalion were manning front line positions at Potijze, Ypres sector in May 1916, his wounding reported in The Western Daily Press 15th August 1916 page 3. Returning to the 1st Battalion in France on recovery, he was awarded the Military Medal for his gallantry during the advance and capture of St Ledger 23rd to 25th August 1918. Discharged to the Army Reserve 21st January 1919. In May 1936 he applied for a War Pension.

Military Medal GV

252 Pte – L Cpl G Messer 1/W Gds

Withcopy Medal Index Card, copy Medal rolls, copies from Regimental History for MM action, Messer mentioned.

George Messer was from Brecon, a founding member of the newly formed Welsh Guards, the last of the Guards Regiments formed by the command of HM King George V on 26th February 1915, Private Messer allocated the Regimental number 252. He served in France from 17th August 1915, the day the 1st Battalion arrived in France and they were soon in action at Loos in September 1915. Recorded as wounded in The Western Daily Press dated 15th August 1916 page 3, he was almost certainly wounded near Potijze, Ypres sector in May 1916, before the Battalion arrived on the Somme. The paper records his next of kin residing in Salisbury, Wiltshire. Recovering, he re-joined the 1st Battalion in France and was awarded the Military Medal London Gazette 24th January 1919 page 1214, the Regimental history records this is for the advance ad capture of St Ledger 23rd to 25th August 1918, in which the 1st Battalion captured 86 prisoners, one Field Gun and seven Heavy Machine Guns at a cost of 144 killed and wounded. All the men are noted as doing well, 1215 Cpl Drake was killed trying to rush a Machine Gun by himself, 2333 Pte Llewellyn Edwards who, having dropped his rifle while scrambling over some wire, engaged in fisticuffs with the enemy…..252 L/Cpl Messer….were a few of the names that were noted for good work.

Discharged to the Army Reserve  21st January 1919, some documentation has survived between the Guards Records Office, Chelsea Hospital and the Ministry of Pensions, in what appears to be an application for a War Pension dated 20th May 1936, the outcome of the application is not recorded.

Polishing and contact wear, particularly over “Gds” but a scarce gallantry medal to a founding member of the Regiment.

Good Fine £595 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Conduct Medal Victoria, Crimea Medal 1854-56 clasps Alma, Inkermann, Sebastopol, Turkish Crimea Medal Sardinian issue to Private Michael Burke 88th Regiment of Foot (Connaught Rangers). Enlisting at the Regimental HQ, Kinsale, Ireland 13th January 1849. Serving with his Regiment in the Crimea, he was awarded the DCM for gallantry at the battle of Inkermann 5th November 1854, recommendation dated 21st January 1855. An in patient at Scutari hospital, he was evacuated to England 15th May 1855, he recovered and went on to serve with his Regiment in India post Indian Mutiny and died of sickness near Cawnpore 31st August 1864. In November 1870 the Regiment boarded the troopship HMS Jumna in Bombay, and commenced the passage home. Nine officers, and 407 non-commissioned officers and men, died in India, mainly from cholera, during the 13 years the Regiment were stationed there.

Distinguished Conduct Medal Victoria

*ichl Burke 88th Regt

Crimea Medal 1854-56 clasps Alma, Inkermann, Sebastopol

Pte Michl Burke 88th Ft

Turkish Crimea Medal Sardinian issue

2560 Michl Burke 88th Regt

With copies from the Regimental Muster Book for enlistment, return to England and death and other research listed here.

DCM correct impressed naming style, Crimea Medal engraved naming in Regimental style, Turkish Crimea Medal Regimental impressed naming. “M” on DCM obscured by contact wear.

Provenance: ex Lt Colonel Henry Francis Newdigate Jourdain, CMG collection, recorded as his first gallantry group to the Regiment when his Medal group was sold (Spink 3rd February 2015).

Michael Burke attested for the 88th Foot (Connaught Rangers) at the Regimental HQ, Kinsale, Ireland 13th January 1849. An in patient at Scutari hospital, he was evacuated to England 15th May 1855, he recovered and went on to serve with his Regiment in India and died of sickness near Cawnpore 31st August 1864.

The Regiment served inNova Scotia in 1850 before returning home in 1851. Deployed for the Crimean War and saw action at the Battle of Alma in September 1854, the Battle of Inkermann in November 1854 and the Siege of Sebastopol in winter 1854. Its service in the Crimean War was recognised by the presentation to the City of Galway of a pair of cannons which remain on public display.

Battle of Inkermann 5th November 1854

………The next Russian assault, also on the Second Division’s left, was in substantially greater numbers and led by General Soimonoff himself. As the Russians approached the ridge, troops of General Buller’s Brigade from the Light Division and a battery of guns came up. The 88th Regiment passed the crest, followed by the battery, but were driven back, three guns falling into Russian hands. General Buller then charged the Russian column with the 77th and 88th Regiments. The 47th Regiment attacked the Russians in flank and the column retreated, giving up the captured guns. General Soimonoff was killed in the struggle and General Buller wounded. A column of Russian sailors, attempting an approach from the Careenage Ravine was also attacked by Buller’s men and driven back. The remainder of Soimonoff’s first line advanced down the post road to the Barrier. They were bombarded by a British battery and finally driven back by the assembled British pickets and the remaining companies of the 49th Regiment. The initial Russian assaults had all failed. Soimonoff’s attack took up the first part of the battle. Some of his regiments were so severely handled, losing a high proportion of officers, that they took no further part in the war. While the struggle had been intense it could not compare with the severity of the fighting that began with the arrival of Pauloff’s force from across the Tchernaya River. The 88th Regiment suffered 2 officers and 102 men killed and wounded.

Awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for Inkermann, recommendation dated 21st January 1855. One of 16 such awards for the Crimea War.

Siege of Sebastopol April to September 1855

The 88th Regiment took part in the first attack on the Redan 18h June 1855 and the final attack on the Redan 8th September 1855 in which their Commanding Officer Lt Colonel G V Maxwell, CB was severely wounded along with one officer killed and seven wounded with 13 men killed and 133 men wounded and missing. Remaining throughout the siege of Sebastopol the 88th Regiment were present during the second, third, fouth, fifth and final bombardment of Sebastopol between April and September 1855 sustaining a furthe 133 killed and wounded.

After the Crimean War, the Regiment returned home in 1856 but was deployed to India in 1857 in response to the Indian Rebellion. Michael Burke remained in England, he does not appear on the Indian Mutiny Medal roll for the 88th Foot. In November 1870 the Regiment boarded the troopship HMS Jumna in Bombay, and commenced the passage home. Nine officers, and 407 non-commissioned officers and men, died in India, mainly from cholera, during the 13 years the Regiment were stationed there.

Contact wear and polishing therefore

VF £3,450 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

British Empire Medal For Gallantry E2 Civil Division, 1939/45 Star, France and Germany Star, Defence and War Medals to Mr Edward Alfred Quigley, Driver and Attendant, London Ambulance Service born in Camberwell, London in 1921. Awarded the BEM For Gallantry in 1969 when, responding to an emergency call, he lowered himself into a sewer filled with poisonous fumes to rescue two men. Giving one man oxygen he tied a rope around him and he was hauled to safety. The second unconscious man was also hauled to safety but was dead on arrival at hospital. Mr Quigley also started to loose consciousness and had to be pulled out by a rope he attached around himself. He retired to Bournemouth and died there in 1995. He is believed to have served in the Royal Army Medical Corps in the Second World War.

British Empire Medal For Gallantry E2 (Civil Division)

Edward Alfred Quigley

1939/45 Star, France and Germany Star, Defence and War Medal

Unnamed as issued

With copy London Gazette entry and headers, corresponding miniatures, letter from The Central Chancery dated 25th October 1993, addressed to “Mr Edward E Quigley, 121 Church Road, Ferndown, Dorset, BH22 9ET”, thanking him for his donation to the Order of the British Empire 75th Anniversary Appeal Fund.

Edward Alfred Quigley was born in Camberwell, London 13th July 1921, he died in Bournemouth, Dorset in 1995.

BEM For Gallantry (Civil Division) London Gazette 8th August 1969 page 8213

Edward Alfred Quigley, Ambulance Driver / Attendant, London Ambulance Service

Joint citation with Thomas Edward Peter Smith, Descaling Engineer, London SE5

“Mr Smith and two other men were engaged in clearing out the interceptor in a drain. It was decided to clear the blockage by using a chemical and about 4 gallons of the acid were poured into the drain. The three men then went to the manhole over the council sewer and one man went down to clear the blockage in the interceptor from behind. He started to push rods back up the sewer, came up to the surface for more rods and then collapsed down into the manhole apparently the result of fumes. Smith’s colleague immediately jumped into the manhole and managed to lift the man up so that Smith was able to get hold of his hands and lift him out of the manhole and lay him on the road.

The man in the manhole now collapsed. Smith, after calling for help took off his jacket and jumped into the manhole. A rope was passed down to Smith and he was told to tie it around the other man. Smith by now was seriously affected by the fumes and although he tied the rope it kept slipping. Smith was too affected to retie the rope but refused to leave his colleague and he eventually became unconscious himself. By this time Mr Quigley arrived following an emergency call to his (ambulance) depot. On being told two men were in the sewer, he looked down the manhole where he saw one man apparently unconscious and the other fighting for breath. Realising there was no time to wait for assistance, he took an oxygen mask and went into the manhole, where he could small what appeared to be acid fumes.

As Smith was the least affected of the two men, he placed the oxygen mask on him and then pulled the head of the other man clear of the sewer. He tied the rope which had been passed down to him around Smith, who was then pulled out of the manhole. The rope was again passed down and Quigley tied it around the other man who was again pulled out. He was found to be dead on arrival at hospital. By this time Quigley was almost unconscious and he too had to be pulled out”.

A rare gallantry award for saving life to the London Ambulance Service.

GVF £650 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Conduct Medal GVI, 1939/45 Star, Africa Star clasp 8th Army, Italy Star, France and Germany Star, Defence and War Medals to Private James Hudson, Durham Light Infantry from Bradford. Recommended for the Military Medal for his gallantry in leading an attack on an enemy Machine Gun post on the night of 21st / 22nd March 1943 located in the Mareth Line (Southern Tunisia) of defences whilst serving in the 6th Battalion. His Company Commander seriously wounded beside him, he fixed bayonets and captured the position accounting for many of the enemy himself. The award upgraded to a Distinguished Conduct Medal. Landing with the 8th Battalion on “D” Day 6th June 1944 in Normandy, he went missing during an offensive patrol on 17th June 1944 with two other soldiers of his Battalion, they later re-joined their Battalion having encountered strong enemy positions in the Parc de la Mere and Chateau du Coridillon areas.

Distinguished Conduct Medal GVI

3660867 Pte J Hudson Durh LI

1939/45 Star, Africa Star clasp 8th Army, Italy Star, France and Germany Star, Defence and War Medals

Unnamed as issued

With copy London Gazette entry and headers, copy DCM recommendation, copies from the Regimental History and a copy photo of Private (Lance Corporal) Hudson.

Mounted as originally worn.

Gallantry and Distinguished Service

3660867 Pte James Hudson 6th Battalion Durham Light Infantry from Bradford.

Distinguished Conduct Medal London Gazette 17th June 1943 page 2761 “For gallant and distinguished services in North Africa”.

“On the night of 21st / 22nd March 1943 during the 151st Brigade’s attack on the Mareth defences Private Hudson was with “C” Company 6th Battalion Durham Light Infantry. On seeing an enemy Machine Gun Post, he immediately led a group of men forward with fixed bayonets and charged the position. His rifle bolt was damaged and his rifle could not be fired, but he still led on his party relying solely on the use of his bayonet. He succeeded in capturing the Post, killing many of the enemy personally. This action of Private Hudson’s enabled the rest of his company to move forward onto the position. Before leading the charge, his Company Commander had been seriously wounded beside him. He showed outstanding courage and complete disregard for his own safety”.

The Regimental History records –

“The attack was timed to take place at full moon during the night of 21st / 22nd March. After careful reconnaissances made under the very noses of the enemy during the night of 18th, the Durham assault Battalions advanced from the Chet Meskine at 2300 hours on 20th. Against a heavy but not very accurate fire of all arms “C” and “D” Companies of the 9th Battalion succeeded in crossing the anti tank ditch, and wading across the Wadi and scrambling up the far bank by forming a human ladder, fought their way with the bayonet into the thick of the position. “B” Company finally overcoming Ksiba Ouest. The 8th Battalion had a similar experience in overrunning Ouerzi, where the Italians fought stubbornly. Lt Colonel Jackson was killed, but by morning both Battalions had reached their objectives with very severe fighting but without undue loss. On the other hand the 6th Battalion was unable to launch its attack until dark fell again, and the supply of reinforcements remained precarious throughout the 21st. When it did advance, however, the 6th secured its objectives, Ouerzi Ouest and Zarat Sudest, with comparative ease.”

Private James Hudson landed with the 8th Battalion Durham Light Infantry on “D” Day at La Riviere. On 17th June 1944 he was reported missing in the War Office Casualty List TNA WO417/78. On this day active patrolling south and south east took place in an endeavour to come into contact with enemy units. Enemy positions in some strength were located in the Parc de la Mere and Chateau du Coridillon areas. Hudson went missing with Pte J F Robinson and Private E Swann of his Battalion, likely they were cut off or had to go to ground for a period of a few days in order to rejoin allied lines when safe to do so. War Office Casualty List TNA WO417/79 records he is no longer missing.

GVF £3,950 SOLD


Gallantry and Distinguished ServiceGallantry and Distinguished Service

British Empire Medal GVI (Civil Division) to John Cheesman, a civilian Lorry Driver from Lincoln. On 3rd July 1945, Mosquito XXV KB416 of 627 Squadron, piloted by 133387 Flight Lieutenant Douglas Norman Johnson, RAFVR and Navigator 198190 Pilot Officer Joseph Duthae Finlayson, RAFVR, crashed in a field when on an overshoot, after attempting to land at RAF Station Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, on one engine. John Cheesman, who was working near by, assisted with the rescue of the Pilot and Navigator from the burning aircraft. The NCO in charge of the Fire Party Corporal Coggar was awarded the George Medal for the same incident.

British Empire Medal GVI (Civil Division)

John Cheesman

With copy London Gazette entries and headers, newspaper article.

The BEM on its original investiture pin.

On 3rd July 1945, Mosquito XXV KB416 of 627 Squadron, piloted by 133387 Flight Lieutenant Douglas Norman Johnson, RAFVR and Navigator 198190 Pilot Officer Joseph Duthae Finlayson, RAFVR, crashed in a field when on an overshoot after attempting to land at RAF Station Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, on one engine. John Cheesman had been working nearby and went to assist the Fire Party.

British Empire Medal London Gazette 5th February 1946 page 806

 ‘An aircraft crashed in a field adjoining the runway on which it was endeavouring to land. A Fire Party from the aerodrome went immediately to the scene. Cheesman, who was working nearby, went to the assistance of the Fire Party to help to release the navigator from the burning wreckage. Cheesman tried with a hacksaw to cut through the cables by which the airman was held, whilst a fire extinguisher was played on the navigator. The fire had by this time gained a good hold and it was necessary for the rescuers to withdraw. A fire tender was then able to subdue the flames sufficiently in the area where the Navigator was lying, to enable the rescuers to make a further attempt, and Cheesman was successful in cutting the cables and freeing the man. Cheesman showed courage without thought for his own safety.’

1585300 Corporal Stephen James Coggar, RAFVR was in charge of the Fire Party and was awarded the George Medal for his gallantry in the rescue of the pilot and navigator London Gazette 26th February 1946 page 1134.

1585300 Corporal Stephen James Cogger, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, Royal Air Force Station, Woodhall Spa.

‘On the afternoon of 3rd July, 1945, a Mosquito aircraft crashed in a field (adjoining the runway) when attempting to land. Corporal Cogger, who was in charge of the fire party, observed the aircraft to be in difficulty. He ordered the fire tender to stand by and himself started up the section’s Jeep. By this time the aircraft had crashed, so Corporal Cogger immediately proceeded to the scene. On arrival he found the aircraft on fire, the flames rapidly spreading along the leading edge of the wings and the fuselage. The nose of the aircraft had completely broken away from the remainder of the fuselage. The navigator was lying in the wreckage by the leading edge of the wing. Corporal Cogger immediately entered the flames and tried to pull the navigator clear but found him to be held fast by some cables around his legs. Corporal Cogger then went to the Jeep to get a hacksaw and hand fire extinguisher. By this time the Duty Orderly and Ambulance Driver and also a civilian had arrived. All four entered the burning area, the civilian using the hacksaw to cut the cables holding the navigators legs, whilst Corporal Cogger played the extinguisher on him. By this time the fire had gained a good hold and the four men were forced to retire. The fire tender had now arrived and was able to subdue the flames enough to permit the four rescuers to cut the navigator free. Corporal Cogger, in spite of burns sustained earlier, again entered the burning area, accompanied by the Ambulance Driver, to look for the pilot but he could not be seen. Corporal Cogger was ultimately taken to hospital suffering from major burns of the forehead, cheeks, arms and hands. He had displayed great gallantry in circumstances when, at any moment, the aircraft might have exploded. He has attended some 14 crashes as NCO in charge of the fire party and in 10 of these he has shown resource and determination in dealing with fires.’

EF £450 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Service Order GV, 1914 Star and GENUINE clasp 5th Aug-22nd Nov 1914, British War and Victory Medals with Mentioned in Despatches Oakleaf, India General Service Medal GV clasp Waziristan 1921-24, Delhi Durbar Medal King George V 1911 to Lieutenant Colonel Leonard Kenyon Stanbrough, Royal Garrison Artillery, born 27th August 1874 the fourth son of Reverend Morris Edgar Stanbrough, Rector of Crayke, Yorkshire.entering the RMC Woolwich as Cadet 22nd September 1892, commissioned 2nd Lieutenant 17th November 1894, he served in Gibraltar, India and Singapore, the latter appointment as ADC to His Excellency the Governor. Serving in France and Belgium from 6th November 1914 with 8th Brigade, Royal Garison Artillery, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order in 1916 and twice Mentioned in Despatches. Served during the Waziristan operations 1921-24 with HQ, 20th Indian Pack Brigade, Royal Artillery and retired on Half Pay in February 1925. He died in Natal, South Africa in 1949 aged 75 years.

Distinguished Service Order GV

Unnamed as awarded

1914 Star and GENUINE clasp 5th Aug – 22nd Nov 1914

Major L K Stanbrough RGA

British War and Victory Medals with MID Oakleaf

Lt Col L K Stanbrough

India General Service Medal GV clasp Waziristan 1921-24

Lt Col L K Stanbrough RA

Delhi Durbar Medal King George V 1911

Unnamed as issued

With a small folder of research containing copy documents from various sources, copy Medal Index Card, copy Medal roll entries for Delhi Durbar 1911 Medal and IGS Waziristan 1921-24. Medal Index Card confirms the award of the clasp to 1914 Star.

Leonard Kenyon Stanbrough was born 27th August 1874 the fourth son of Reverend Morris Edgar Stanbrough, Rector of Crayke, Yorkshire and his wife Augusta, entering the RMC Woolwich as Cadet 22nd September 1892, commissioned 2nd Lieutenant 17th November 1894, Lieutenant 17th November 1897, Captain 10th October 1900, Major 30th October 1914, Lieutenant Colonel 21st February 1921, placed on Half Pay 21st February 1925. Served in Gibraltar September 1897 to February 1899, India February 1899 to January 1901, Adjutant of Heavy Brigade RGA 1st Army Corps 1903-05, Singapore November 1906 to April 1908 as ADC to His Excellency the Governor, India April 1908 to October 1912, and Adjutant of Mountain Batteries RGA at Jutogh in 1909, France and Belgium from 6th November 1914 with No 8 Heavy Brigade, Royal Garrison Artillery. Awarded the Distinguished Service Order London Gazette 3rd June 1916 page 5569, Mentioned in Despatches London Gazette 1st January 1916 page 22 (FM Sir John French) and 23rd December 1918 page 15034 (FM Sir Douglas Haig), served during the Waziristan operations 1921-24 with HQ, 20th Indian Pack Brigade, Royal Artillery. Married Florence Marienne Doris, second daughter of Major General T B M Glascock at Ambala, India in 1909, retired on Half pay 21st February 1925. He died in Pietermaritzburg, Natal 15th March 1949.

NEF £2,250 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Distinguished Sercice Medal GV, 1914/15 Star, British war and Victory Medals to Petty Officer Telegrapher Albert Thomas Sibthorpe, Royal Navy a former Railway Porter born in Bethnal Green, London in 1893. Entering the Royal Navy as Boy 2nd Class aboard HMS Impregnable, he was Rated Ordinary Telegrapher aboard HMS Neptune 3rd April 1911 and Telegrapher aboard the same ship 24th March 1912. Joining the Submarine Base Dolphin 29th September 1913 and his first Submarine E6 11th December 1913 which completed the first war patrol by a British Submarine commencing 5th August 1914. Sibthorpe was ashore at Maidstone as spare crew when E6 was sunk by a mine off Harwich 26th December 1915. Later joining HM Submarine G10, he was discharged 10th February 1923 on reduction of the Royal Navy, the rating electing for discharge under the terms of Admiralty Fleet Order 1359 of 1922. Post Naval service, he was employed as a Porter with the General Post Office and resided at 31 Cumming Street, Finsbury with his wife, he died of Pulmonary Tuberculosis at the London Fever Hospital, Liverpool Road, Islington, South East London on 30th August 1928 aged 35 years.

Distinguished Service Medal GV

J.7280 A T Sibthorpe LG TEL Oversea Submarines 1914-6

1914/15 Star

J.7280 A T Sibthorpe L Tel RN

British War and Victory Medals

J.7280 A T Sibthorpe PO Tel RN

With copy London Gazette entry and header for DSM, service record, death certificate and photo.

Albert Thomas Sibthorpe was born in Bethnal Green, London 8th August 1893 a Railway Porter he entered the Royal Navy as Boy 2nd Class aboard HMS Impregnable 12th February 1910. Rated Ordinary Telegrapher aboard HMS Neptune 3rd April 1911 and Telegrapher aboard the same ship 24th March 1912. Joining the Submarine Base Dolphin 29th September 1913 and the Submarine Depot Ship HMS Maidstone 11th December 1913, he joined HM Submarine E6 the same day and was advanced to Leading Telegrapher aboard this Boat 21st November 1914.

Image result for Submarine E6

On the outbreak of War HM Submarine E6 was commanded by Lt Commander Cecil P Talbot, Royal Navy and completed the first war patrol by a British Submarine commencing 5th August 1914. Present at the battle of Heligoland Bight 24th August 1914, she was nearly rammed by a British Warship. On 25th September 1914 E6 encountered a new minefield 10 miles west of Heligoland, a mine caught in her forward hydrophone she surfaced and eventually the mine was freed by Lieutenant Williams-Freeman (awarded DSO) and Leading Seaman Cremer (awarded Conspicuous Gallantry Medal). On 29th September 1914 E6 attacked a German Destroyer at 500 yards but her torpedo missed, on 30th May 1915 E6 sighted the German High Seas Fleet, fired a torpedo at the leading Battle Squadron but missed. Awarded Distinguished Service Medal London Gazette 1st January 1917 page 9 “In recognition of services rendered by Petty Officers and men in Submarines in enemy waters during the period from the commencement of hostilities to 3rd August 1916”.

Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Albert Thomas Sibthorpe aboard HM Submarine G10 (3rd from left) an enlargement from a copy photo
of the crew of G10, all identified by name

E6 was mined on 26th December 1915 with the loss of all hands in the North Sea off Harwich. A trawler had been sunk by a mine in the same position shortly before, and a British Torpedo Boat signalled E6 to avoid the minefield, but E6 ignored the warning and was lost, at the time Sibthorpe was ashore at Maidstone, presumably as spare crew.

Sibthorpe subsequently joined Dolphin 1st July 1916, the Submarine depot Ship HMS Lucia 15th November 1916, advanced to Petty Officer Telegraphist 28th June 1917, the Submarine Depot Ship HMS Lucia 15th November 1916 and HM Submarine G10 10th August 1918. Post war he joined Victory I 29th November 1919, HMS Colombo 27th January 1922, HMS Vindictive 27th December 1922 and finally Victory I 29th January 1923 from where he was discharged shore 10th February 1923 on reduction of the Royal Navy and the rating electing for discharge under the terms of Admiralty Fleet Order 1359 of 1922. Sibthorpe married Maud Elizabeth Webb at St James’s Church, Pentonville in the Parish of Clerkenwell 14th September 1915, after leaving the Royal Navy, he was employed as a Porter with the General Post Office and resided at 31 Cumming Street, Finsbury with his wife, he died of Pulmonary Tuberculosis at the London Fever Hospital, Liverpool Road, Islington, South East London on 30th August 1928 aged 35 years.

A fine early DSM group to a Submariner participating in the first submarine war patrol of the First World War.

GVF & better £2,200 Available


Gallantry and Distinguished Service 

Distinguished Conduct Medal GV, 1914/15 Star, British War and Victory Medals with Mentioned in Despatches Oakleaf to Temporary Corporal Walter George Burt, Dorset Regiment a former Gamekeeper born in Cerne Abbas, Dorchester, Dorset in 1889. Attesting for the Dorset Regiment at Dorchester 29th April 1907, he joined the 2nd Battalion for service in India in 1909 and landed with his Battalion in Mesopotamia 6th November 1914. For gallantry and coolness at Barjisiyah (Turkey in Asia) on 14th April 1915, he was also Mentioned in Despatches by General Sir John Nixon for distinguished service during the period April to September 1915. Wounded in action 28th September 1915 Kut al Amara, gunshot wound left leg and again on 22nd November September 1915 at Ctesiphon, the latter wound to his left knee and a bullet wound left calf, the bullet having to be removed surgically. Following treatment in Mesopotamia he was evacuated to  India aboard the Hospital Ship Takada 9th December 1915 arriving in hospital at Poona  7th January 1916. Recovering from his wounds he was deemed unfit to return to his Regiment now under siege at Kut al Amara and transferred to the Royal Engineers, discharged in October 1919 in April 1920 he was awarded a 20% disability pension.

Distinguished Conduct Medal GV

8328 Pte W G Burt 2/Dorset Regt

1914/15 Star

8328 Pte W G Burt Dorset R

British War and Victory Medals with MID Oakleaf

8328 T Cpl W G Burt Dorset R

With copy Medal Index Card, service record, London Gazette entries for DCM and MID, copy photo and other research listed here.

Walter George Burt was born in Cerne Abbas, Dorchester, Dorset in 1889, an 18 year 6 month old Gamekeeper he attested for the Dorset Regiment at Dorchester 29th April 1907 joining the Depot the same day. Posted to the 1st Battalion 4th October 1907 and to the 2nd Battalion 1st February 1909 for service in India, he landed with his Battalion in Mesopotamia 6th November 1914. Awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal London Gazette 5th August 1915 page 7678-

“For gallantry and coolness at Barjisiyah (Turkey in Asia) on 14th April 1915, when he carried an urgent message along the firing line within 400 yards of the enemy’s position under very heavy fire and returned to report having delivered it”

Mentioned in Despatches by General Sir John Nixon, KCB, ADC General Commanding Indian Expeditionary Force for distinguished services during the period from the middle of April 1915 to the end of September 1915 London Gazette 5th April 1916 page 3669.

Gallantry and Distinguished Service

Picture from: Western Gazette Almanac 1917 page 209

Wounded in action 28th September 1915 Kut al Amara, gunshot wound left leg and again on 22nd November September 1915 at Ctesiphon, the latter wound to his left knee and a bullet wound left calf, the bullet having to be removed surgically. Following treatment in Mesopotamia he was evacuated to  India aboard the Hospital Ship Takada 9th December 1915 arriving in hospital at Poona  7th January 1916 and discharged 11th February 1916. Re-admitted with Malaria 2nd April 1916 and discharged 20th April 1916. Unfit for Infantry service he was transferred to the Royal Engineers (No 303511) and promoted to Corporal. Discharged 21st October 1919 he was awarded a 20% disability pension 30th April 1920, the Surgeon commenting “He has an inability to completely extend his left knee joint otherwise general health good”.

Although the Battalion’s landings in the Shatt-al-Arab on 6th November 1914 met little opposition, the Turks, backed by Arab levies, were quick to respond.  The Dorsets faced stiff fighting expelling the Turks from Saihan on 15th November and Saihil two days later.  In eleven days these actions and the diseases prevalent in the marshy conditions of the region cost the Battalion 25% of its fighting strength.  They reached Basra on the 23rd. After minor engagements, mostly against Arab insurgents, the 2nd Dorsets advanced to Shaiba (ancient Sheba).  In February 1915 they were forced to wade knee-deep through the annual flooding of the two rivers.  At Shaiba they endured very difficult conditions, including sand storms.  Mounting frequent offensive patrols, they fought major actions on 3rd March and 14th April in which the depleted Battalion showed great resilience, earning Shaiba (Barjisiyah) as a new Battle Honour.

From : History of the Dorsetshire Regiment 1914 – 1919 published by the Regimental History Committee, 1932.

As far as could be ascertained the Turks had fallen back to a position just east of Marjisiya Wood. General Melliss commenced his advance on Turkish positions at 0930 on 14th April 1915, the Dorsets on the left and the 24th Punjabis on the right leading 16th Brigade. South Mound Ridge was lightly defended and quickly taken, the two Battalions halted 500 yards beyond the Ridge while the enemy positions were reconnoitered.

Just before noon the Dorsets advanced on the left of the Brigade, the 117th Mahrattas now in support. The advance met strong opposition from machine gun and rifle fire as soon as it started, this partly enfiladed the Dorsets which swung half right to face it. Pushing onto about 900 yards in front of the Turkish trenches the advance was held up by a hail of bullets. Ammunition began to run short, but thanks to the gallantry of the Indian Mule Drivers bringing supplies right up to the front stocks were replenished in the nick of time. Casualties were mounting up fast, there were several acts of gallantry including Private Burt who again showed great coolness and determination in carrying a message under heavy fire.

At about 1430 Colonel Rosher the 2nd Battalion Commanding Officer was hit and killed and the Adjutant who went to his assistance was badly wounded. Orders for a retirement were actually issued when the day was saved by 16th Brigade getting up and charging. Lt Colonel Clarkson now in command of the 2nd Battalion jumped up at this point and shouted the order for the Dorsets to advance, he was soon hit but the Dorsets advanced the now 200 yards to the Turkish trenches, by 1615 the Turkish front line had been captured and those Turks who had not been bayoneted or surrendered fell back 150 yards to a new position. The Dorsets continued to advance capturing the second defensive line, Turkish resistance collapsed and they were now in full retreat.

The Dorsets had played a prominent part in the days fighting, losing a quarter of its strength, casualties amongst officers were high with one Commanding Officer killed and the second wounded, three companies were now commanded by 2/Lieutenants.

Scarce DCM to the Regiment, the Dorset Regiment received 101 DCM’s for the entire First World War.

NEF £2,250 Available


© J.Collins Medals 2014