Commander Loftus William Jones: Fighting to the Very End!

Loftus William Jones was born in 1879 in Petersfield, Hampshire, a small town 17 miles to the north of the Naval Base at Portsmouth. His Father was Admiral Loftus Francis Jones, who retired from the Navy twenty years after his son was born in 1899. Given his Father’s position in the Royal Navy and theContinue reading “Commander Loftus William Jones: Fighting to the Very End!”

Nursing at the Front: The Forgotten Heroes of the Great War

Trawling through the newspaper archives from 1914 to 1918 I came across the occasional story of awards for nurses, for their courage under fire at the front. Given the current global situation we find ourselves in, and all the praise rightfully directed at the amazing doctors and nurses of the NHS, I decided that thisContinue reading “Nursing at the Front: The Forgotten Heroes of the Great War”

The Christmas Truce: Humanity in times of war.

With the war a little less than 6 months old and following months of bitter fighting in rain filled muddy trenches, a most remarkable event occurred. In the midst of war we were given a stark reminder that humanity still existed. It started with an exchange of Christmas carols, and after a while a fewContinue reading “The Christmas Truce: Humanity in times of war.”

The Headlines on this Day…

Monday 7th of December 1914 King George Meets King Albert and Reviews Belgium Soldiers King George’s historic visit to his soldiers is at an end, and his majesty is back in London. Regardless of all personal danger, he visited trenches while shells were bursting but a little distance away. “That is all the more reasonContinue reading “The Headlines on this Day…”

The Fighting Bradfords: A Most Remarkable Family

In 1885 George Bradford, a mining engineer from Chirnside, a small village just North of the border, married Amy Marian Nicholson from Brabourne in Kent. Nobody could have predicted at the time that this marriage would produce one of the most remarkable fighting families Britain had ever seen. Their four sons, Thomas; George; Roland andContinue reading “The Fighting Bradfords: A Most Remarkable Family”

The Headlines on this Day on…

Friday 27th November 1914 Loss of HMS Bulwark: British Battleship Blown up in Sheerness Harbour While Band Played: “Tragic Accident” The battleship Bulwark was blown up at Sheerness Harbour early yesterday morning. At the time of the Explosion the band of the battleship was playing. Only twelve men were saved out of a crew whichContinue reading “The Headlines on this Day on…”

Captain the Reverend Edward Mellish: The Miracle of St Eloi

Of all the Victoria Cross recipients I have researched, the story of Edward Noel Mellish was the one that probably inspired me the most. A story worthy of a Hollywood blockbuster and involving bravery of the very highest order; a story of unswerving devotion to duty, not only to king and country, but a dutyContinue reading “Captain the Reverend Edward Mellish: The Miracle of St Eloi”

George William Chafer V.C. – Small in Stature; Big in Heart

George William Chafer, an orphan of a little over five feet in height was not your typical Victoria Cross recipient; indeed, he is the smallest man to ever receive the award. What he lacked in stature though, he more than made up for in courage and determination. Born in Bradford in 1894, George lost hisContinue reading “George William Chafer V.C. – Small in Stature; Big in Heart”

25th of October – On this Day Special

World War 1 25th of October 1917 VC Hero at Passchendaele The third battle of Ypres (Passchendaele) is now into a third month. The British currently hold Hill 60, a spoil heap on the Ypres-Comines railway. It was during this battle that 2nd Lieutenant Hugh Colvin from Burnley Earned his Victoria Cross. Colvin started hisContinue reading “25th of October – On this Day Special”

Courage and Self Sacrifice: George Peachment V.C.

George Peachment was born in Bury, Lancashire on the 5th of May 1897. His father, George senior was a hairdresser, Barber, and Newsagent originally from Norfolk, and his mother, Mary, was a school mistress from Cambridgeshire. The family moved to Bury following the Birth of their eldest son Charles. They had a second son, David,Continue reading “Courage and Self Sacrifice: George Peachment V.C.”

Remebering Private Thomas Whitham: VC Hero who died in Poverty

Private Thomas Whitham was born in Burnley on the 11th of May 1888. He was one of seven Children brought up by Catherine Witham, who lost her husband when Thomas was only young. The family lived in Worsthorne, a small village in the borough of Burnley. Thomas trained as a mason and bricklayer in BurnleyContinue reading “Remebering Private Thomas Whitham: VC Hero who died in Poverty”

From Private to Major: The Rise of Hugh Colvin VC

Hugh Colvin was born to Scottish parents on the 18th of March 1887 in Burnley Lancashire. His Father, also Hugh, was a Gardener, and Hugh himself was sent off to work as Gardeners apprentice in Lancaster as a teenager. Hugh was one of four Children; his older sister Margaret was born in Scotland in 1885;Continue reading “From Private to Major: The Rise of Hugh Colvin VC”

WW1 – The Battle for Hill 60, Two More VC’s

Private Edward Dwyer Edward Dwyer joined the East Surrey Regiment in 1912 aged just 17 and was posted to the 1st Battalion. Three years later he found himself in the middle of one of the fiercest battles of the 1st World War; the battle for Hill 60. Hill 60, despite being nothing more than aContinue reading “WW1 – The Battle for Hill 60, Two More VC’s”

WW1 – The Battle for Hill 60: Second Lieutenant Benjamin Handley Geary VC

Hill 60 near Ypres in Belgium was actually a large spoil heap from the digging of a cutting on the Ypres-Comines Railway. The hill was a strategic landmark because of the view it gave to the surrounding area, and as a result it was fought over and changed hands numerous times. On April 17th, 1915,Continue reading “WW1 – The Battle for Hill 60: Second Lieutenant Benjamin Handley Geary VC”