WW1 Distinguished Conduct Medal Group

We are pleased and proud to publish news of our latest acquisition which will soon be on sale at http://www.medals4heroes.co.uk

Distinguished Conduct Medal and 1914 Mons Star Trio Group.

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This group was awarded to a soldier who started the War in the Northamptonshire Regiment and then transferred to the Machine Gun Corps.
The naming on the medals is as follows:

Distinguished Conduct Medal to:

16991 SJT D.V. WARD 2/M.G.C.

Copy of DCM Obverse Copy of DCM ReverseCopy of DCM naming 1Copy of DCM naming 3



1914 Star, with Bar to:
9475 L.Cpl D. V. WARD 1/NORTH’N. R.

Copy of Mons star obv

 

Copy of Mons star rev

 


British War Medal and Victory Medal to:
9475 SJT D. V. WARD NORTH’N. R.

Copy of Pair 2

Durham Vasa Ward was from Long Buckby near Kettering in Northamptonshire.
He enlisted 21st March 1912.
His Medal Index Card confirms the medals and shows that he entered France 13th August 1914, thus entitling him the 1914 Mons Star.

MIC Ward Durham Vasa

 

BritishArmyWWIServiceRecords1914-1920ForDurhamVasaWard
He transferred to the Machine Gun Corps 26th January 1916 and was discharged to Section “B” Army Reserve on 21/4/1919, but then re-enlisted and was issued with one of the new 7-figure army numbers (7807897)BritishArmyWWIServiceRecords1914-1920ForDurhamVasaWard (1)


These medals have been bought from the family and we are informed that he survived the war and served in the Northamptonshire Police Force after the war. He died circa 1932.

D V Ward DCM

DV Ward DCM back

The photograph postcard is of Durham Vasa Ward to his mother. Text is as follows;

Dear Mother. Just a comic postcard to say that we are having a fine time. With Love from, Nellie, Billy & Durham.

It is addressed to: Mrs V Ward, 49 High Street, Long Buckley, Northants.

We think the postmarked date is 1926.

Son Billy (William Casa Ward) flew in Bomber Command in WW2 as a Flight Engineer in Lancasters. The family retains William’s flight log book and other items.
His award of the Distinguished Conduct Medal first appears in the London Gazette, number 31370, Fifth Supplement, Friday 30th May 1919 published Tuesday 3rd June 1919.
The citation appears in London Gazette Issue 31819 published on the 9th March 1920.
The citation reads as follows:
16691 Sjt D V Ward, 2nd Battalion Machine Gun Corps (Bn, MGC). (Long Buckby) (LG 11 Mar 1920)
He has been in every action in which the Division has been engaged, and has throughout shown great gallantry and devotion to duty. He has always carried out his duties, and has set a fine example to those under his command.

Citation page incl DVW

 

1st Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment history shows that they were in August 1914 : in

Blackdown near Aldershot under command of 2nd Brigade in 1st Division. 13 August 1914 : landed at Le Havre as part of the 2nd Brigade of the 1st Division.
The Northamptonshire Regiment was an Infantry Battalion that would have had an MG Section as part of its Battalion Headquarters. These weapons would have been brigaded when the Machine Gun Corps was formed in 1915. The guns, and crews, would have been formed into a Machine Gun Company.
The 1st Battalion was part of the 2nd Brigade, attached to the 1st Division. It’s MG Section was transferred on 26 January 1916 to form the 2nd Bde. MG Coy. As a unit of the 1st Infantry Division, it will have taken part in the following battles and engagements. On the outbreak of War the 1st Division was quartered at Aldershot, and it mobilized there. The division crossed to France between the 11th and 15th August, concentrated around le Nouvion, and began to move forward on the 21st August.
1914
23 and 24 August Battle of Mons [I Corps]
24 August to 5 September RETREAT FROM MONS [I Corps]
27 August Etreux (1st Guards Bde)
6 to 9 September Battle of the Marne [I Corps]
13 to 26 September BATTLE OF THE AISNE [I Corps]
13 September Passage of the Aisne
20 September Actions on the Aisne Heights
26 September Action of Chivy
19 October to 15 November BATTLE OF YPRES [I Corps]
21 to 24 October Battle of Langemark [I Corps]
29 to 31 October Battle of Gheluvelt [I Corps]
11 November Battle of Nonne Bosschen [I Corps]
20 to 21 December Defence of Givenchy
1915
25 January Givenchy
29 January Cuinchy
9 May BATTLE OF AUBERS RIDGE [I Corps, First Army]
Attack at Rue du Bois
25 September to 1 October Battle of Loos [IV Corps, First Army]
5 to 8 October
13 October Hohenzollern Redoubt [IV Corps, First Army]

Following the actions mentioned above in which Durham Vasa Ward would have been involved in, as a member of the Northamptonshire Regiment, he would, once transferred on the 26th January 1916 to the Machine Gun Corps have been involved in all further action with the Machine Gun Corps for the duration of the conflict as per his DCM citation.

Machine Gun Corps.

Here are the “short histories” taken from the booklet “The Suicide Club – Machine Gun Corps Companies & Battalions – their formation records and operations” . This was written by Graham Sacker of the Machine Gun Corps Old Comrades Association. Acknowledgement to Graham for this information.

It is an incredible feat of endurance that saw Durham Vasa Ward through the war and very poignant to read the citation in context with the list of engagements below.

2 MG Coy
formed 26/1/1916 (1 Division)

Served (1916/17/18) with 2 Sussex Regiment, 1 Loyal North Lancashire Regiment (until 7/2/18), 1 Northamptonshire Regiment, 2 King’s Royal Rifle Corps, 2 Trench Mortar Battery, and other units as for 1 MG Coy

Engagements:

14 to 17/7/1916   Battle of Bazentin (III Corps/4 Army),

23 to 26/7/1916 &  15/8 3/9/1916  Battle of Pozières Ridge (IIICorps/4 Army),

15 to 22/9/1916  Battle of Fleurs Courcelette (IIICorps/4 Army),

25 to 28/9/1916  Battle of Morval (III Corps/4 Army),

14 to 21/3/1917  German Retreat to Hindenburg Line (III Corps/4 Army),

21/6 to 20/10/1917   Operations on Flanders Coast.

10/7/1917  Defence of Nieuport (XV Corps/4 Army),

5 to 10/11/1917  2nd Battle of Passchendaele (II Corps/2 Army).

On 28/2/1918 formed part of 1 Battalion MGC as per the below

1 Bn
formed 28/2/1918 from 1/2/3/216  MG Companies

Served (1918) with 1 Black Watch Regiment, 1 Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 1 Cameron Highlanders, 2 Sussex Regiment, 1 Northamptonshire Regiment, 2 King’s Royal Rifle Corps, 1 South Wales Borderers,  1 Gloucestershire Regiment, 2 Welsh Regiment,1/2/3 Trench Mortar Batteries, 6  Welsh (Pioneers), 113/114/115 Batteries Royal Field Artillery,116/117 Batteries Royal Field Artillery (until 5/16), 30/40/46/51/54  Batteries Royal Field Artillery, X1/Y1/Z1 Med. Trench Mortar Batteries, V1 Heavy Trench Mortar Battery, 23/26 & 1 Lowland. Field Engineers, 1 Division Signal Company, 6 Welsh  (Pioneers), 1/2/141 Field Ambulance

Engagements:

9 to 11/4/1918 Battle of Estaires (I Corps/1 Army),

15/4/1918 Battle of Hazebrouck (3 Brigade/55 Division/XI Corps/1 Army),

18 to 19/4/1918  Battle of Bethune (I Corps/1 Army),

2 to 3/9/1918 Battle of the Drocourt Queant Line (Canadian Corps/1 Army),

18/9/1918 Battle of Epehy (IX Corps/4 Army),

29/9 to  2/10/1918 Battle of St Quentin Canal,

3 to 5/10 /1918 Battle of the Beaurevoir Line,

17 to 25/10/1918 Battle of the Selle,

4/11/1918 Battle of the Sambre,

4/11/1918 Passage of the Sambre Oise Canal.

On 11/11/1918 Division. Resting/training at Fresnoy le Grande.

16/11/1918 Advance towards Germany.

16/12/1918 Crossed Frontier.

24/12/1918 Established HQ nr. Bonn.

Disbanded 14/4/1919.

The MGC Old Comrades Association has been in existence since 1919.  Originally it was set up to keep ex-soldiers in touch with former comrades, and there were branches in many parts of the country. Also to help ex-soldiers back into employment by providing references, and in some cases financial aid was forthcoming.   Of course there have been no ex-soldiers left alive for almost a decade and the organisation’s current membership comprises of the descendants of former soldiers and those with an interest in the history of the Corps.   The Association runs three commemorative functions every year – a ceremony in May at the Corps memorial (The Boy David) situated at Hyde Park Corner, London, with a luncheon,  a religious commemoration in the Corps church of St Wulframs, Grantham – HQ of the Corps during the war, followed by a lunch and lecture – this in October, and another wreath laying on Remembrance Sunday at Hyde Park Corner – followed by another lunch.  Membership is now dwindling somewhat, but there are still a hardcore of family members who are determined to make a good show in the centenary year (2015).    In August 2014, a full size bronze statue of one of the six Victoria Cross winners, Herbert Columbine, will be unveiled in his home town of Walton-on-Naze, Essex.

The MGC Old Comrades Association has been in existence since 1919. Originally it was set up to keep ex-soldiers in touch with former comrades, and there were branches in many parts of the country. Also to help ex-soldiers back into employment by providing references, and in some cases financial aid was forthcoming. Of course there have been no ex-soldiers left alive for almost a decade and the organisation’s current membership comprises of the descendants of former soldiers and those with an interest in the history of the Corps. The Association runs three commemorative functions every year – a ceremony in May at the Corps memorial (The Boy David) situated at Hyde Park Corner, London, with a luncheon, a religious commemoration in the Corps church of St Wulframs, Grantham – HQ of the Corps during the war, followed by a lunch and lecture – this in October, and another wreath laying on Remembrance Sunday at Hyde Park Corner – followed by another lunch. Membership is now dwindling somewhat, but there are still a hardcore of family members who are determined to make a good show in the centenary year (2015). In August 2014, a full size bronze statue of one of the six Victoria Cross winners, Herbert Columbine, will be unveiled in his home town of Walton-on-Naze, Essex.

Whilst we undertake further research it is fair to say the Durham Vasa Ward had an extremely active war seeing many action on the Western Front. We look forward to adding to this blog and welcome any relevant contribution.

We are hoping that the family will find some photographs which will be added to the blog.

Acknowledgement goes to Graham Sacker of http://www.machine-gun-corps-database.co.uk who has supplied us valuable information in this super publication shown.

Suicide Club Book

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