Manley Angell James VC

Name: Manley Angell James

Conflict: First World War

Gazetted: June 28, 1918

Service: Army

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Manley Angell James VC
Manley Angell James Medals
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Place/date of birth: Odiham, Hampshire/July 12, 1896

Rank when awarded VC (and later highest rank): Temporary Captain (later Brigadier)

Date of bravery: March 21, 1918

London Gazette citation:

T./Capt. Manley Angell James, M.C., Glouc. R.

For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty in attack. Capt. James led his company forward with magnificent determination and courage, inflicting severe losses on the enemy and capturing twenty-seven prisoners and two machine guns.

He was wounded, but refused to leave his company, and repulsed three hostile onslaughts the next day.

Two days later, although the enemy had broken through on his right flank, he refused to withdraw and made a most determined stand, inflicting very heavy losses on the enemy and gaining valuable time for the withdrawal of guns. He was ordered by the senior officer on the spot to hold on “to the last” in order to enable the brigade to be extricated. He then led his company forward in a local counter-attack on his own initiative, and was again wounded. He was last seen working a machine gun single-handed, after having been wounded a third time.

No praise can be too high for the gallant stand made by this company, and Capt. James, by his dauntless courage and magnificent example, undoubtedly enabled the battalion to be withdrawn before being completely cut off.

Click here to see full Gazette entry.

Other decorations: DSO, MC, MBE

Place/date of death: Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol/September 23, 1975

Grave/memorials: Canford Cemetery and Crematorium, Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol

Origin of VC to the Lord Ashcroft collection: Purchased at auction, Christie’s, London, 1991

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