Three VC’s awarded to the Hampshire Regiment in WW1
Nick Saunders was the latest speaker at the Probus Club of Basingstoke. He is a part time archivist in the Royal Hampshire Regiment in Winchester with interest in three members of the Hampshire Regiment awarded the VC in WW1.
In 1915 2nd Lt George R D Moor was only eighteen years old during the Gallipoli campaign in the Dardanelles. The 2nd battalion had lost 700 men and five Commanding Officers in six weeks.
A detachment which had lost most of its officers was rapidly retiring before a heavy Turkish attack. Recognising the danger to the rest of the line he dashed 200 yards and stemmed the retirement, led back the men and recaptured the lost trench. He died of the Spanish flu on November 3rd, 1918, aged just twenty-one. As well as the VC he had also been awarded the MC and Bar.
On 31st July 1917 2nd Lt Denis GW Hewitt was at Ypres. After capturing his first objective he advanced but was hit by shrapnel that set alight signal flares in his haversack. Despite severe burns he led his company under heavy machine gun fire, capturing and consolidated his objective. He was killed by a sniper. He had been educated at Winchester College and Sandhurst and was aged just nineteen.
At Ypres on 20th September 1917, 2nd Lt Montague SS Moore’s actions earned him the Victoria Cross and subsequently the Croix de Guerre. He led seventy men across 500 yards meeting heavy machine gun fire with the result that he arrived at his objective with only a sergeant and four men. Undaunted he bombed a large dug out and took 28 prisoners, 2 machine guns and a light field gun. Reinforcements brought the number to sixty. Using enemy rifles and bombs they defended the position under constant fire for 36 hours beating off counterattacks. By this time his force was reduced to just ten men. 2nd Lt Moore eventually got away his wounded and withdrew under cover of a thick mist. He was only eighteen years old.
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