London 1918, the Armistice and Gallantry research

VANN, Lt.-Col. Bernard William, Victoria Cross, Croix de Guerre 

Medal & Mortality index

The Military Cross was instituted as a Decoration on December 28th, 1914, to reward Distinguished Services rendered by Officers of certain ranks in the army in time of war. Bars may be added for additional acts of gallantry. Since August 1st, 1918, it has, like the D.S.O., been awarded for "services in action" only.

VANN, Capt. Bernard William ... ... ... ... 8/Notts & Derby

For conspicuous gallantry on several occasions :

KEMMEL, 24th April, 1915. When a small advanced trench which he occupied was blown in, and he himself wounded. and half buried, he showed the greatest determination in organising the defence and rescuing buried men under heavy fire. Although wounded and severely bruised, he refused to leave his post till directly ordered to do so.

YPRES, 31st July and subsequent days, he ably assisted another officer to hold the left trench of the line, setting a fine example to those around him. He was slightly wounded. On various occasions he has led patrols up to the enemy's trenches and obtained valuable information.

BAR TO M.C.

BLAIRVILLE, 21/22 September, 1916. He led a daring raid against the enemy's trenches, himself taking five prisoners and displaying great courage and determination. He has on many previous occasions done fine work.

The Victoria Cross Decoration was instituted January 29th, 1856, for the purpose of signalising special individual acts of bravery. It may be conferred on any rank. The Badge consists of a Bronze Cross patee with the Royal Crown in the centre and underneath a scroll bearing the inscription '''For Valour." The colour of the ribbon is red. :

BELLENGLISE, FRANCE, 29th September, 1918. For most conspicuous bravery, devotion to duty and fine leadership during the a- tack at Bellenglise and Lehaucourt. He led his battalion with great skill across the Canal du Nord through a very thick fog and under heavy fire from field and machine guns. On reaching the high ground above Bellenglise the whole attack was held up by fire of all descriptions from the front and right flank. Realising that everything depended on the advance going forward with the barrage, Lt.-Col. Vann rushed up to the firing line and with the greatest gallantry led the line forward. By his prompt action and absolute contempt for danger the whole situation was changed, the men were encouraged and the line swept forward. Later he rushed a field gun single-handed and knocked out three of the detachment. The success of the day was in no small degree due to the splendid gallantry and fine leadership displayed by this officer. Lt.-Col. Vann, who had on all occasions set the highest example of valour, was killed near Ramicourt four days later, when leading his battalion in attack.

[Reg. No. 1800. Gazetted 2nd Sept., 1914. Killed in action, 3rd Oct., 1918]

(11 times a casualty. ED.)

1918 Oct 3 - VANN, Lt.-Col. Bernard William, V.C., Military Cross & BAR, 8/Notts & Derby