All The Victoria Crosses of World War Two

Discussion in 'General' started by Drew5233, Jun 6, 2009.

  1. sol

    sol Very Senior Member

    38.
    Post No.110 - A picture of Randall's Park Crematorium, Leatherhead, Surrey....


    the crem on Flickr - Photo Sharing!
    randalls park crematorium - Flickr: Search

    If you doubt you can compared with this one (picture is small but you can see that it's the same building):

    APCC Gallery | Page 3

    39.
    Post No.112 - A picture of Overdale Crematorium, Bolton Lancashire...
    Overdale Crematorium - Bolton

    Also you can find here a nice photo of the same crematorium (look under Heaton):

    The Churches of Britain and Ireland

    31.
    Post No.95 - A picture of Creiff Cemetery, Perthshire, Scotland.

    Sorry, couldn't find better photo, but maybe you can use it

    Picasa Web Albums - "Copie"
     
  2. wtid45

    wtid45 Very Senior Member

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    Ian Oswald Liddell

    Rank: Lieutenant Temporary Captain

    Unit: 5th Battalion, Coldstream Guards, British Army

    Awarded: 12th February 1946

    Nationality: British

    The citation in the London Gazette of 5th June 1945 gives the following details:



    Additional Infomation:

    Liddell was born in China.

    He served as a Private in the King's Shropshire Light Infantry prior to being commissioned into the Coldstream Guards.

    During the early years of the war he was attached to the 'Coates Mission'. The plan to evacuate the Royal Family from Britian in case of invasion.

    He was shot by a sniper whose bullet killed another soldier going through his head and then into Liddell.

    CWGC :: Certificate :poppy:

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    Becklingen War Cemetery, Soltau, Niedersachsen, Germany
    When I go on my travels next week (allowing for wifes mood of course;)) I should have a couple of pics to add to this post from a memorial panel in a church near where my Mum lives and maybe one other I have to check on.
     
  3. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Post no 45, Lieut.-Commander Beattie, V.C.

    From The Irish Times, August 4, 1942:

    GERMAN SALUTES V.C.
    PARADE AT PRISON CAMP

    Lieutenant-Commander S.H. Beattie, the St. Nazaire raid V.C., now a prisoner of war in Germany, was called out at a special parade when the news of his award was received and saluted by the German Commandant.

    The story was written by a fellow prisoner of war in a letter home, and has been told to the Red Cross and St. John Organisation.

    "We had a very exciting ceremony this week," ran the letter. "A special parade was called, and the little Commandant, in full regalia, called out Commander Beattie and said that official news had arrived of his V.C., and saluted him, which was gentlemanly. Naturally there was wild applause, and we all feel now that the raid must have been thought worth while at home ..."

    Lieutenant-Commander Beattie was in command of the Campbeltown, which destroyed the main gate at St. Nazaire German naval base, on March 28. In May the award of the V.C. was announced, "for great gallantry and determination at the attack." - (Press Association)
     
  4. englandphil

    englandphil Very Senior Member

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    George Ward Gunn

    Rank: 2nd Lieutenant

    Unit: 3rd Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery, British Army

    Awarded: 20th October 1942

    Nationality: British

    The following details are given in the London Gazette of April 17th, 1942:



    Additional Infomation:

    Also awarded the Military Cross

    CWGC :: Certificate :poppy:

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    Knightsbridge War Cemetery, Libya

    VICTORIA CROSSES, GUNN and BEELEY, 1942

    Liverpool Daily Post April 22nd, 1942

    WIRRAL VC FOUGHT ON TILL DEATH

    FIRED BATTERY’S LAST GUN AT 60 TANKS

    HEROIC EXPLOIT IN LIBYA

    Stirring stories of two soldiers in Libya who fought on in the face of certain death are revealed by the posthumous award of the V.C. to 2nd Lieut G. W. GUNN. R.H.A, son of a Wirral doctor and to rifleman John BEELEY, Kings Royal Rifle Corps.

    Lieut GUNN continued firing the last anti-tank gun of a battery of 60 advancing tanks until he was shot in the head. His gallantry saved the British position.

    The award for the two posthumous V.C’s for gallantry at Sidi Rezegh is announced to 2nd Lieut George Ward GUNN. M.C. Royal Horse Artillery and Rifleman John BEELEY, Kings Royal Rifle Corps.

    2nd Lieut GUNN was the eldest of four sons of Dr and Mrs George GUNN of Church Rd, Neston and was 29yrs old.

    Official citation:-

    On November 21st 1941, 2nd Lieut GUNN was in command of a troop of four anti-tank guns part of a battery of 12 guns attached to the Rifle Brigade Column. At 10.00hrs a covering force of enemy tanks were engaged an driven off, but, an hour later the main attack developed by about 60 enemy tanks. 2nd Lieut GUNN drove from gun to gun during this period in an armoured vehicle encouraging his men and reorganising his dispositions as fast as one gun then another was knocked out.

    Finally only two guns remained in action and were subjected to heavy fire. Immediately afterwards one of these guns was destroyed and the portee of another was set on fire, and all the crew killed or wounded except the sergeant. The gun itself remained undamaged The battery commander then arrived and started to fight the flames. When he saw this 2nd Lieut GUNN ran to his aid through intense fire and immediately got the one remaining anti-tank gum into action on the burning portee, himself sighting it while the sergeant acted as loader. He continued to fight the gun firing between 40 to 50 rounds regardless alike of the enemy fire, which wass then concentrated on this one vehicle, and the flames which might at any moment reached the ammunition with which the portee was loaded.

    In spite of this 2nd Lieut GUNN’S shooting was so accurate at a range of about 800yds that at least two enemy tanks were hit and set on fire, other damaged before he fell dead, having been shot through the forehead.

    2nd Lieut GUNN showed the most conspicuous courage in attacking this large number of the enemy tanks with a single enamoured gun, and his utter disregard for extreme danger was an example which inspired all who saw it. He remained undismayed by intense fire and overwhelming odds, and his gallant resistance only ceased with his death. But for this gallant action enemy tanks would have undoubtedly overrun our position.

    2nd Lieut GUNN was educated at Mostyn House School, Parkgate of which his father, amongst other institutions is medical officer. He afterwards went to Sedbergh School and on completing his education went to London as an articled accountant. When war broke out he was a chartered accountant and company secretary with Messers SISSONS and Co, Ltd, chartered accountants of New Board St, London.

    He volunteered for enlistment on the first day of the war and was called up in December 1939, becoming a gunner in the Royal Horse Artillery. A few months later he entered an officers training corps camp and was commissioned in August 1940. Most of the time since he has spent in Libya, in May 1941 he was awarded the Military Cross for gallantry and coolness, he inspired all ranks under heavy and close enemy fire particularly on January 4th and 5th as one of the heroic Tobruk garrison.

    He was a bachelor, one of his brother is in the R.A, another in the R.AM.C, a third is a medical student. “We are very proud of him” said his mother last night to a reporter, “But I really think all who were with him deserve the V.C, all the fighting men deserve as much credit as he.”

    GLORIOUS EXAMPLE

    RIFLEMAN WHO ATTACKED POST ALONE

    The incident which carried the V.C for Rifleman BEELEY occurred the same day that Lieut GUNN showed gallantry. During the attack by the Kings Royal Rifle Corps against strong enemy position the company to which BEELEY belonged was pinned down by heavy fire at point-blank range, from the front and flank of the flat and open ground of the aerodrome.

    “All officers but one of the company and many ranks had been killed or wounded” the official citation says. “On his own initiative with no sort of cover Rifleman BEELEY got to his feet carrying a Bren-gun and ran forwards towards a strong enemy post containing an anti-tank gun, a heavy machine-gun and a light machine-gun.”

    “He ran 30yds and discharged a complete magazine at the post from a range of 20yds, killing and wounding the entire crew, the post was silenced and Rifleman BEELEY’S platoon was able to advance, but, Rifleman BEELEY fell dead across his gun, hit in at least four places, he went yo certain death in a gallant successful attempt to carry the day.”

    “ His courage and self sacrifice was a glorious example to his comrades and inspired them to further efforts to reach their objective, which was eventually captured by them plus 700 prisoners.”

    Rifleman BEELEY was born in Manchester 23 years ago and was a stone mason before he enlisted in 1939, his widow Private Betty BEELEY, aged 25, is an orderly in an ATS Company, attached to her husband’s regiment at Winchester, her home town

    VICTORIA CROSSES, GUNN and BEELEY, 1942
     
  5. TomTAS

    TomTAS Very Senior Member

    Hi Drew,

    First Thanks Owen for pointing me to this so here you go Andy this ones from Brighton....

    Cheers
    Tom
     

    Attached Files:

  6. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    Cheers Tom. If you check post number 5 I already have his headstone. There is a list of the missing headstones above this post if you can help with any of them.

    Cheers
    Andy
     
  7. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    A bloke in Adelaide has sent me of "A general picture of West Wyalong Lawn Cemetery, NSW"

    and

    photos of Benjamin Gower Hardy's & Ralph Jones's Headstones from Cowra War Cemetery, NSW

    The images are all over 2Mb, let me know the best way to send them through

    cheers


    Dave
     
  8. spidge

    spidge RAAF RESEARCHER Patron

    A bloke in Adelaide has sent me of "A general picture of West Wyalong Lawn Cemetery, NSW"

    and

    photos of Benjamin Gower Hardy's & Ralph Jones's Headstones from Cowra War Cemetery, NSW

    The images are all over 2Mb, let me know the best way to send them through

    cheers


    Dave

    Well done Dave,

    Twice I contacted the RSL up there for Andy with no result.
     
  9. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    As the AJEX parade on the 21st of this month draws near, I am reminded of a commanding figure we used to see on parade until his death in 2001.

    This obituary in The Telegraph tells his amazing story.

    Thomas Gould VC
    Obituary in The Telegraph 7-12-2001

    At about midday on February 16, (1942, The British Submarine) Thrasher, on patrol off Suva Bay, on the north coast of Crete, torpedoed and sank an Axis supply ship of some 3,000 tons, escorted by five anti-submarine vessels.
    The escorts counter-attacked, with support from aircraft, and dropped 33 depth-charges, some of them very close indeed. Thrasher survived the attacks and, that evening after dark, surfaced to recharge batteries.
    In the early hours of the morning, when Thrasher altered course across the swell and began to roll heavily, banging noises were heard from above, as though some heavy object were loose and rolling about. It was found that there was a bomb, probably weighing about 100 lb, lying on the submarine's casing in front of the four-inch gun mounting.
    Lieutenant Peter Roberts, the First Lieutenant, and Petty Officer Gould volunteered to go on deck and remove the bomb. As Second Coxswain, Gould was in charge of the stowage of gear inside the casing (a light metal free-flooding structure, erected on top of the submarine's pressure hull).
    There was some two or three feet clearance between the casing and the hull, enclosing a tangle of pipes, wires and other gear. At any moment the bomb might roll off the casing on to the saddle tank below and detonate. While Gould held the bomb still, Roberts put an old potato sack round the bomb and tied it with a length of rope.
    The bomb was too heavy to be thrown clear of the saddle tanks, so they manhandled it 100 ft forward to the bows and dropped it overboard, while Thrasher went full astern to get clear.
    Looking more closely at the casing, they found a jagged hole and inside, another bomb, resting on the pressure hull. It was not possible to handle the bomb up through the hole it had made. The only way was through a hinged metal grating about 20 ft away.
    The two men lowered themselves through the opening and wriggled on their stomachs to where the bomb lay. If it exploded, the submarine would be lost. Furthermore, Thrasher was off an enemy coast, and the enemy knew there was an Allied submarine in the area. If a surface vessel or aircraft were sighted, Thrasher's CO, Lt (later Vice Admiral Sir Hugh "Rufus") Mackenzie, would have to dive, and the two men would be drowned.
    Gould lay flat on his back with the bomb in his arms. Roberts lay in front of him, dragging him by the shoulders as he crawled along. By the faint light of a shaded torch, the two of them worked the bomb through the narrow casing, easing it up through the grating. The bomb made a disconcerting twanging noise whenever it was moved and it was 40 minutes before the two men had it clear and could wrap it in the sack, carry it forward and drop it over the bows.
    "I never expected to get the VC," Gould said. "When we came down from the casing that night, we were soaking wet." All the Captain said was: `You'd better get yourselves dried'."
    Mackenzie did not make much of the "bombs incident" in his patrol report, merely commending Roberts and Gould for their "excellent conduct". The incident was virtually forgotten until several months later, when, as Mackenzie recalled, he was "shaken by the news that Roberts and Gould had each been awarded the Victoria. A great personal honour to themselves and, as they and I felt, also to their fellow submariners."
    The VCs were awarded on the recommendation of the C-in-C Mediterranean, Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham, but were opposed by the Honours and Awards Committee in London, which argued that the acts of bravery had not been performed in the presence of the enemy, as VC Warrants stipulated, and that the George Cross would be more appropriate. Cunningham, however, retorted that two large enemy bombs, in a submarine off an enemy coastline, constituted quite enough enemy presence.
    Thomas William Gould was born at Dover on December 28 1914. His father, Reuben Gould, was killed in action in 1916. His mother married a second time, to Petty Officer Cheeseman.
    From St James's School, Dover, Gould joined the Navy on September 29 1933, and served in the cruisers Emerald and Columbo.
    He joined submarines in 1937 and served in Regent, Pandora and Regulus. He was rated Acting Petty Officer on August 17 1940. Later in the war, he was mentioned in dispatches after the submarine Truculent sank U-308 off the Faroes on June 4 1943.
    As a VC hero, Gould was interviewed by the Marquess of Donegal, who asked him what he was thinking while busy with those bombs. "I was hoping the bloody things would not go off," Gould replied.
    On January 13 1943, Gould was made an Honorary Freeman of Dover; and in March, after his Investiture at Buckingham Palace, he went home to St Albans, where he then lived, to a civic reception by the Mayor and Corporation.
    After being invalided from the Navy in October 1945, Gould became a business consultant and was for some years chief personnel manager with Great Universal Stores. He kept up his interest in the Navy and the Jewish community, taking part in Jewish ex-Servicemen's marches.
    In July 1946 he was in the front of a march through London to protest against the government's policy towards Palestine. He was commissioned as a Lieutenant RNR and commanded the Sea Cadet Corps at Bromley in Kent, where he was then living.
    In May 1965, Gould's name was in the papers again, this time as "a VC on the dole". He had lost his job as personnel manager, because of "a clash of personalities", and remarked that he was finding his VC a liability: "Incredible though it may seem, people in top management seem to shy away from me. I think it might be because they are afraid that a man with such a record could show too much embarrassing initiative. If it is the VC which is frightening people away from me, I wish they would forget it. Those days are over."
    Gould's VC was sold at Sotheby's for £44,000 in October 1987 and is held by the Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen.
    For several years Gould was President of the International Submarine Association of Great Britain and was an active member of his local Royal Naval Association and of the Victoria Cross and George Cross Association. He was also an active Freemason.
    Gould was a quiet, conscientious man of great personal presence. Meticulous in his habits, he was always smartly dressed and in later life grew a luxuriant naval beard and moustache.
    He married, in 1941, Phyllis Eldridge, who died in 1985. They had a son.



     
  10. spidge

    spidge RAAF RESEARCHER Patron

    Attached Files:

  11. TomTAS

    TomTAS Very Senior Member

    Drew,

    Can you tell me the name of the Soldier that as a VC in Croydon ??? Going tomorrow and will get a photo...

    Cheers
    Tom
     
  12. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    I don't think there is a WW2 VC holder buried in Croyden.
     
  13. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

  14. TomTAS

    TomTAS Very Senior Member

    Hi Drew,

    Bingo here you go

    Croydon VC George Knowland
    Hello All,

    Just read about George Knowland who won his VC at the battle for Burma... George is in fact buried in Burma but they hold a service for him in Croydon where pupils from the local school of Mitcham Rd and Veterans attend...

    Cheers
    Tom
     
  15. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    Hi Drew,

    Bingo here you go

    Croydon VC George Knowland
    Hello All,

    Just read about George Knowland who won his VC at the battle for Burma... George is in fact buried in Burma but they hold a service for him in Croydon where pupils from the local school of Mitcham Rd and Veterans attend...

    Cheers
    Tom

    See Post 156-His post is complete

    He was born in Catford and was schooled/lived in Croyden.

    Cheers
    Andy
     
  16. TomTAS

    TomTAS Very Senior Member

    Hi Drew,

    With the help of Alistair Shervington who kindly showed me his Headstone George Knowland for you.. And a old paper photo of CSM P.H. Wright VC
     

    Attached Files:

  17. lebourg

    lebourg Junior Member

    This memorial to Sydney Bates is near a hamlet called Pavee Normandy.

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  18. AndrewCherry

    AndrewCherry Junior Member

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    Hi , I'm the grandson of C.S.M. Peter Wright VC and thought I'd share this photo of him with the painting of the his actions in Italy and his medals. If I can be of any help with any information you would like I would be only to happy to help.
     
  19. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Hello Andrew welcome

    please post anything you see fit ,forum members will be most interested

    regards
    Clive
     
  20. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

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