62578 Archibald Charles William NOEL, MC, 1 Welsh Guards

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    P/62578 Captain Archibald Charles William NOEL, Training Battalion, WELSH GUARDS

    Captain NOEL was Adjutant 1st Batt. WELSH GUARDS during the operations in FRANCE and BELGIUM 17 May - 29 May 1940.

    From 17 - 23 May the Batt. was heavily engaged as part of the Garrison of ARRAS. Many units were placed under command of the Batt. which entailed much extra duty for Captain NOEL as a staff officer, which he performed in an exemplary manner, often under trying conditions & heavy fire.

    On 29 May the Batt. was heavily attacked by German tanks and Infantry at VFY WEG. After a prolonged engagement in which the enemy infiltrated and in some cases encircled our positions, and withdrawal was ordered in circumstances of great difficulty. Captain NOEL was in command of the rear party of Batt. H.Q. With the enemy in close proximity and under heavy fire, he organised the withdrawal. He remained to the last with a small party and withdrew with the enemy in close pursuit. Forced to take cover during a dive-bombing attack, in which the R.S.M. and others were wounded, his party was overrun and made prisoner.

    Undoubtedly Captain NOEL's cool conduct and willingness to sacrifice himself enabled many others to effect their withdrawal to safety.


    Very strongly recommended. Not forwarded before as the Commanding Officer at the time, Brigadier COPELAND-GRIFFITHS, had to wait till the release of prisoners-of-war so as to verify certain of the facts.

    Signed Date 4 Aug 45 V. COPELAND-GRIFFITHS formerly Commanding 1st Batt. WELSH GUARDS, 26 Jan 1938 to 14 July 1940

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    Army Number: 62578
    Rank: Captain
    Name: A C W NOEL
    Unit: Welsh Guards
    POW Number: 631
    Date of Capture:
    Place of Capture:
    Camp: Oflag 79
    TNA Reference:
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2020

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