Francis George Miles VC

Name: Francis George Miles

Conflict: First World War

Gazetted: January 6, 1919

Service: Army

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Francis George Miles VC
Francis George Miles VC Medals
Medal group

Place/date of birth: Clearwell, near Coleford, Gloucestershire/July 9, 1896

Rank when awarded VC (and later highest rank): Private

Date of bravery: October 23, 1918

London Gazette citation:

No. 17324 Pte. Francis George Miles, 1 /5th Bn., Glouc. R. (T.F.) (Coleford, Glos.).

For most conspicuous bravery and initiative in attack on the 23rd October, 1918, during the advance against the Bois L’Eveque, when his company was held up by a line of enemy machine guns in the sunken road near the Moulin J. Jacques. Pte. Miles alone, and on his own initiative, went forward, under exceptionally heavy fire, located a machine gun, shot the gunner, and put the gun out of action. Observing another gun near by, he again advanced alone, shot the gunner, rushed the gun, and captured the team of eight. Finally, he stood up and beckoned to his company, who, acting on his signals, were enabled to work round the rear of the line and to capture sixteen machine guns, one officer, and fifty other ranks. It was due to the courage, initiative, and entire disregard of personal safety shown by this very gallant soldier that the company was enabled to advance at a time when any delay would have jeopardised seriously the whole operation.

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Other decorations: N/A

Place/date of death: Clearwell, near Coleford, Gloucestershire/November 8, 1961

Grave/memorials: St Peter’s Churchyard, Clearwell, near Coleford, Gloucestershire

Origin of VC to the Lord Ashcroft collection: Purchased at auction, Morton & Eden, London, 2005

Current location of VC: Displayed on rotation at The Lord Ashcroft Gallery: Extraordinary Heroes exhibition, Imperial War Museum