A REPLICA of a Leamington war hero’s Victoria Cross medal is going on permanent display in the town.
The medal was awarded to Henry Tandey who was born in Leamington and who became the most decorated private of the First World War.
Leamington-based funeral director Henry Ison & Sons launched a £500 appeal to make a duplicate of the medal – the original of which is in The Green Howards Regimental Museum in Yorkshire.
The company commissioned a firm in London to produce a copy of Tandey’s VC which is set to go on public display at the Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum.
Henry Ison & Son’s manager James Hewison said: “We were overwhelmed by the backing we’ve received from the community for our appeal.
“We are now able to commemorate the contribution of one of the UK’s most decorated soldiers and create a lasting local legacy to help future generations remember Henry Tandey and all the other young men from our town who fought at the front and sacrificed so much for the freedom of future generations.”
The appeal received the backing of Tandey’s great nephew Chris Gordon, who is loaning photos and items of his great uncle to the museum collection.
The medal will be presented to the town at a special ceremony at All Saints Church on St George’s Day (April 23) – starting at 3pm and open to the public.
Mayor John Knight will accept the medal before it goes on public display at the museum alongside the Freedom of the Borough scrolls and casket awarded to Tandey a year after the war ended.
Tandey is just one of 1,355 recipients to be honoured with the Victoria Cross, the highest honour awarded to British and Commonwealth forces for gallantry in the face of the enemy. While serving with the Duke of Wellington Regiment, Henry was granted the Distinguished Conduct Medal and the Military Medal for outstanding bravery during some of the bloodiest battles of the Great War.
The medals of Henry Tandey remain in The Green Howards Regimental Museum in Yorkshire but a copy of his VC will soon be on display at Leamington Art Gallery and Museum. (s)
Henry Tandey’s array of medals achieved during the First World War, including the VC (far left). (s)