Armadale & District War Memorial Association

Registered Scottish Charity No. SC044493

Gallantry Awards

 

ARMADALE'S DISTINGUISHED HEROES AND THE FUND COMMITTEE

26th September 1919

 

Back Row:

Sgt J. Bennett (MM); Cpl W. Coventry (DCM); Sgt J. Keddie (DCM, MM); Sgt M. Ross (DCM, MM); D.C. McFarlane.

 Second Back Row:

Pte R. Dryburgh (MM); H. Friel; A Torrance; Cpl D. McLaughlin (MM); Capt A. Gardner (MC); SSgt J. Sykes (Italian BM); Pte P. Ramsay (MM); Sgt J. Conner (MM); K. McLennan.

 Second Front Row:

H. Chalmers; Bmdr J. Ronald Wallace (MM, Belgian Croix De Guerre); W. Forrester; N. Hailstones; Provost Greig; E. Calder; G.S. Scott; Cpl H. Friel (DCM, MM); Gnr R. Watson (MM).

 Front Row:

LCpl T. Davidson (MM); Cpl R. Smith (DCM, Belgian Croix De Guerre); LCpl G. Hart (MM).

 

 

 

In total men from Armadale & District received: Two Victoria Crosses, Five Military Crosses (One with Bar), Ten Distinguished Conduct Medals (One with Bar),Twenty Nine Military Medals, Five Mentions in Dispatches, One French Medal Militaire, One French Medal of Honour with bronze clasp, Four Belgian Croix de Guerre, One Italian Bronze Medal and One Serbian Samaritan Cross.

 

Click on the Medal Name links below or in the Site Contents above for photos and more details about the Armadale and Blackridge District Gallantry Award Winners.

 

There was more than 800 men and woman* from Armadale & Blackridge District served during the Great War, they served in all three services, see the Roll of Honour page for there details.

 

*Armadale was the first town in the county to raise a detachment of Red Cross Nurses, some of whom volunteered for overseas service

Awards

Victoria Cross

Lance Corporal William Angus

Sergeant James Crichton

 

Military Cross

Captain Archibald Gardener

Captain Hugh McKee (MC and Bar)

Lieutenant David McKelvie*

Reverend William Russell Paterson*

Lieutenant William Martin Smith

 

Distinguished Conduct Medal

Corporal William Coventry

Company Sergeant Major William Yuill Dow*

Corporal Hugh Friel*

Sergeant James Keddie*

Private John Lambie*

Sergeant Peter McCallum

Sergeant John McMillan (DCM and Bar)

Sergeant Frank B O’Reilly

Sergeant Malcolm Ross*

Corporal Robert Smith*

 

Military Medal

Sergeant William Allan

Sapper John Anderson

Sergeant John Bennett

Pte William Bonar

Battery Sergeant Major John Connor

Lance Corporal Thomas Davidson

Private George Dennaird*

Private Robert Donaldson

Company Sergeant Major William Yuill Dow*

Private Robert Dryburgh

Private Edward Friel*

Corporal Hugh Friel*

Lance Corporal George Hart

Gunner Alexander Hutchison

Lance Corporal Alex Kirk (Paterson)*

Private John Lambie*

Sergeant Adam MacDonald

Corporal Daniel McLaughlin

Lance Corporal John Muirhead

Corporal James Neally

Corporal William Prentice

Private Peter Ramsay

Company Sergeant Major Robert McKay Ramsay

Sergeant Malcolm Ross*

Private James C Smith

Sergeant Arthur James Steer

Lance Corporal Alexander Ure

Gunner John Ronald (Wallace)*

Signaller/Gunner Robert Watson

 

Mention in Dispatches

Private George Dennaird*

Private Edward Friel*

Lieutenant David McKelvie*

Reverend William Russell Paterson*

 

Foreign Awards

 

Belgian Croix de Guerre

Private James Johnstone

Gunner John Ronald (Wallace)*

Corporal Robert Smith*

 

Italian Bronze Medal

Staff Sergeant John Gordon Sykes

 

Serbian Cross of Charity

Private James Maxwell

 

French Military Medal

Sergeant James Keddie*

 

Médaille d’Honneur avec Glaives en Bronze

Lance Corporal Alex Kirk (Paterson)*

Armadale Burgh Medal

Armadale Burgh Medal

 

In January 1916 it was decided by the Armadale National and Local Relief Funds Committees in Armadale Town Hall, that there would be a separate fund set up in order for suitable mementos to be bought and presented to Armadale men who may gain medals for gallantry.

 

The memento decided on by the committee was, a Gold Medal in the form of a shield, with, on one side the Burgh Coat of Arms, and on the other side the soldiers name and the date of his brave deed or deeds, and in addition, a case (Wallet) with £25 of War Stock.

 

Armadale Burgh Gold Medal

 

The first presentations of the Burgh Medals took place during the 1916 Armadale Children’s Gala Day.

The first men to receive the Burgh Medals and a case with £25 War Stock were:

Sergeant William Coventry DCM

Lieutenant David McKelvie MC

Lieutenant Frank O’Reilly DCM.

 

At the ceremony Provost Wilson said:

 

“The medals were most artistic, and on them for the first time officially, are displayed the Burgh’s Coat of Arms, the same design as suggested by the Marquis of Bute in his book dealing with Scottish Burghs Coat of Arms. I congratulate Mr Ballantyne, jeweller, on his success in the design of the medal. The badges are indeed very handsome, and I do not doubt will, in the future, be handed down as heirlooms.

In giving these gifts I think we agree Armadale has acted in no unstinted or ungenerous fashion.

While we honour these brave men, whom we are proud to have with us today, we do not forget those men who have, too, acted a brave part, but who will return to us in life no more.”

 

As the War progressed many more ceremonies took place in Armadale, so that all of the Armadale sons, who had received special decorations for their gallant actions, also received their Burgh Medals.