Victoria_Cross_of_canada

THE

 

TO THE VICTORIA & GEORGE CROSS

COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE

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b. 29/08/1886 Gilfach Goch, Llantrisant, Wales. d. 27/09/1916 Anneux, France.

 

According to his service record, which has been placed online by The National Archives, Prowse was born on 28 August 1896, however the Commonwealth War Graves Commission gives his age at death as 32, which would place his birth in 1886. Recent research in South Wales has unearthed a birth certificate that shows he was actually born on 29 August 1886 in Brynsion Terrace, Gilfach Goch, Llantrisant and a Blue Plaque was placed on the house (Brynsion Terrace has since been renamed to be part of High Street) by the local council, Rhondda Cynon Taff on 21 October 2006. He enlisted in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve for the Royal Naval Division, on 26 February 1915. The details recorded in his service record show he was living in the Landore area of Swansea, Wales with his wife Sarah; he had been working as a collier, was 6 feet (1.8 m) tall, had grey eyes, brown eyes and a "fair" complexion.

 

Prowse was initially rated Ordinary Seaman, on 5 May 1915 he was promoted to Able Seaman (rank). After completing training at Blandford, in September 1915 he was posted to the Drake Battalion, which was then engaged in the Gallipoli Campaign. It is not clear how much active service Prowse saw at this time as he spent significant periods hospitalised with first jaundice and then gastroenteritis, finally rejoining his battalion in Egypt on 9 January 1916. The division remained engaged in the Gallipoli Campaign until May 1916 when it was transferred to France. Prowse arrived at Marseilles on 7 June 1916, on 20 June he was promoted Petty Officer.

 

In November 1916 the Division was employed in the Battle of the Ancre, the final attempt to resolve the Battle of the Somme. Prowse received a gunshot wound in his left thigh on 13 November (the opening day of the battle) and after initial treatment in France was admitted to a hospital in Epsom on 17 November. Having been discharged from hospital, he went back to the base at Blandford on 9 January 1917, and eventually returned to his battalion in France on 28 March 1917.

 

Prowse was about 32 years old, and a Chief Petty Officer in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, (Drake Battalion, Royal Naval Division) during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

 

VC ACTION

 

On 2nd September 1918 at Pronville, France, Chief Petty Officer Prowse led a small party of men against a strong point, capturing it, together with 23 prisoners and 5 macbine guns. On three other occasions he displayed great heroism in dealing with difficult and dangerous situations, and at one time he dashed forward and attacked and captured two machine gun posts, killing 6 of the enemy and taking 13 prisoners, and two machine guns. He was the only survivor of this gallant party.

 

He was killed in action at Anneux, France on 27th September 1918.

 

LOCATION OF MEDAL: LORD ASHCROFT GALLERY, IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM, LONDON.

BURIAL PLACE:  VIS-EN-ARTOIS MEMORIAL, FRANCE.  PANEL 1-2.

 

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George Henry Prowse

VC, DCM

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George Proswe's medals including VC and DCM on display at Lord Ashcroft Gallery,

Imperial War Museum, London

(Aug 2014).

PROWSE MEMORIAL prowse 1 prowse 2

30th October 1918

paulton war memorial prowse

Paulton War Memorial (Steve Lee)

prowse swansea war memorial

Mumbles War Memorial, Swansea