Len Beddow 24th Lancers, Sherwood Rangers, RIP

Discussion in 'Veteran Accounts' started by General Knowledge, May 11, 2018.

  1. General Knowledge

    General Knowledge Active Member

    Tank Man- Knight

    I’ve always wanted to be a Knight
    To feel the Queen’s sword
    On my shoulder would seem right
    My grateful country’s award.

    With thousands of others
    I stormed Normandy’s shores
    We were a band of brothers
    Allies with a common cause.

    Knocking out the enemy tanks
    Scrambling out, when mine was hit
    Comrades killed; eyes blank
    Carrying on, still doing my bit.

    Award from France, not expected
    “Legion of Honour”, not the sword
    For my comrades I accepted,
    From the British not a word.

    To be Knighted you must sing,
    Not do brave deeds in war,
    Tell jokes and do other things,
    Open your mouth in unearthly roar.

    Then you will be knighted
    And remembered by all,
    To the palace you’re invited
    On your shoulder, sword will fall.

    As a trooper, gunner in tanks,
    Into civvy street once more
    Penniless, with no thanks
    On my shoulder, no sword!

    Fighting from dawn to fading light,
    Comrades I forever mourn
    Each tank man, a Knight
    Their destiny when born.

    Len Beddow sent me a lot of his poems and has given me permission to share them with you. I really like this one. He wrote this shortly after he received the The Order of Légion d'Honneur from France


    Len Beddow 2017 24th Lancers Sherwood Rangers
     
    karlmcd, Deacs, Ron Goldstein and 3 others like this.
  2. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    There are a few pictures here, and an accompanying story re. the presentation of the award and Mayoral luncheon etc.

    Len_Beddow_Bilston_Paper_p50_51.JPG
     
    Deacs, DavidW and SDP like this.
  3. CL1

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

    From the British not a word?
    Penniless with no thanks
     
  4. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    By the way, I may be wrong, but I think (that there is a good chance that) this poem p137 "Entitled “O’Valiant Dead” is another of Len’s poems:

    Poppy Fields 2005

    In the book …"Poppy Fields 2005: Inspired Poems of Remembrance and Reflection on the adversity of war... edited by Steve Twelvetree"

    i.e. Poppy Fields 2005: Inspired Poems of Remembrance and Reflection on the Adversity of War: Amazon.co.uk: Steve Twelvetree: 9781846020032: Books

    [​IMG]

    "Product description
    Synopsis
    'Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn'. These are the heart-rending words that struck deep into the souls of so many, who suffered the trauma of the loss of loved ones, who paid the ultimate price for their country. So many innocent young boys set out from these shores never to return and some returned as men, bearing memories that would haunt them forever, alas, their youth having been snatched from them prematurely. All these years later the poignancy of the Flanders poppies as they cascade down during the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance still fills us with not only deep emotion but also pride. Sometimes war is justified albeit the very last resort after much soul-searching and all other options have been exhausted. "Poppy Fields 2005" is a poetry book written by new and accomplished authors, many of whom have experienced the two world wars in which too many people have died. At home and abroad the devastation was horrific. These poems provide a harrowing insight into the ordinary person's conception and memories of our world at war. 'When the war of the giants is over the wars of the pygmies will begin ...' - Winston Churchill. The later conflicts in the Middle East reached a different level - the brutality encountered was no less painful albeit by a different enemy - in a different century, some of which has been mirrored in many of the poems in this anthology. Courage and chivalry was for many the norm...the extra mile was taken by some people as a means of defence against the intolerable reality of what was actually happening in the world. Placing life today in stark contrast, the authors in this book deliver many sombre thoughts and reflections as they capture the aspects of bravery, sacrifice and tragedy with the ultimate hope that heroes, past and present are remembered and honoured. There are poems that talk of in-depth personal experiences; some of the horror of war and some even have a light-hearted touch. Many are written with great pride; war was not for the faint-hearted and there were many unsung heroes; in the words of our great wartime leader, Winston Churchill, 'never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few'. Then there are poems offering another slant, that of the traumas of everyday life at home, the versatility and the adaptability in times of need, the munitions factory worker, the Women's Land Army, the night bombings and the fear. But...stoicism was our great forte, and camaraderie and the hand of friendship was never far away. To acknowledge those that fought and died for our lives, GBP 2,000 of sales from "Poppy Fields 2005" will be donated to the Royal British Legion."
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2018
  5. General Knowledge

    General Knowledge Active Member

    Teenage Soldier
    Strangers to each other, they were
    When called , to serve with the colours
    Carefree, laughing, enemy beware
    These men, boys,husbands, brother, lovers.

    Each one training, hopes he will be best
    With rifle, bayonet,pistol and tank
    Sergeant, corporal, promotion quest
    Still one of the boys, despite his rank.

    On to Normandy, they invaded
    John, Arthur, Len, Ron and one Enock
    In the fore,enemy land they raided
    They fought well, their tank a solid block.

    Those angry shells, they could not avoid
    They diced with death , along the way
    But then fate took a hand, and they died
    One by one,only Len lives today.

    His memories, he will often share
    In private his tears, he will let fall
    His comrades, friends are still out there
    They no long hear the "last post " call.

    On Armistice Day, it is sounded
    To commemorate those who'd fallen
    The teenage boys , whose fun abounded
    For them life was short, died;brave; as MEN

    Thought it the appropriate to share one of Len's poems at this time.
    Linda
     
    SDP and canuck like this.
  6. General Knowledge

    General Knowledge Active Member

  7. General Knowledge

    General Knowledge Active Member

    I have been contacted by a relative of Len's to tell me that he died on the 27th June.
    I was so pleased that he knew that I had contacted the Committee Goodwood in France and his poem was red out at the ceremony in English and French on the 7th June.
    Many people at the ceremony asked for a copy of it too, so he was over the moon at that. I have already posted it before, but in memory of Len I will post it again. As he is now Reunited with John ,Arthur, Ron and Enock
    Teenage Soldier
    Strangers to each other, they were
    When called , to serve with the colours
    Carefree, laughing, enemy beware
    These men, boys,husbands, brother, lovers.

    Each one training, hopes he will be best
    With rifle, bayonet,pistol and tank
    Sergeant, corporal, promotion quest
    Still one of the boys, despite his rank.

    On to Normandy, they invaded
    John, Arthur, Len, Ron and one Enock
    In the fore,enemy land they raided
    They fought well, their tank a solid block.

    Those angry shells, they could not avoid
    They diced with death , along the way
    But then fate took a hand, and they died
    One by one,only Len lives today.

    His memories, he will often share
    In private his tears, he will let fall
    His comrades, friends are still out there
    They no long hear the "last post " call.

    On Armistice Day, it is sounded
    To commemorate those who'd fallen
    The teenage boys , whose fun abounded
    For them life was short, died;brave; as MEN
     
  8. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    There's this too...

    Len Beddow

    • Black Country Bugle
    • 31 Jul 2019
    [​IMG]
    Len Beddow on the Bugle front page in October 2015

    WITH much sadness we have learned of the passing away last month (27 June 2019) of long-time Bugle contributor Len Beddow.

    Len was a proud Bilston man and a proud Black Country man and over the years he contributed many letters and features to our pages.

    In the Second World War he left his job at Joseph Sankey’s in Bilston and joined the 24th Lancers, becoming a tank gunner.

    In his Sherman tank, he landed on Sword Beach on D-day and in 2014 he was awarded the Légion d’honneur by the French government for his part in the liberation of France and Europe.

    Len went on to fight his way through northern France, Belgium, Holland and into Germany, where he was part of the crew of the first tank to fire on German soil.

    Sadly, Len died, aged 95, on June 27, following treatment in hospital. The funeral took place at Bushbury Crematorium on July 26.

    Our heartfelt condolences go to Len’s partner Frances and to all his family and friends.

    Edit: and... (same article and some facebook comments) : The Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry 1939-1945
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019

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