b. 10/03/1863 Banwell, Somerset. d. 10/09/1903 Bournemouth, Dorset.
William Job Maillard (1863-1903) was born on 10th March 1863, in the village of Banwell, near Axbridge, Somerset. He was educated at Kingswood School, Bath, then at Dunheved College, Launceston, Cornwall, and then at Guy’s Hospital, London (1882-1889). He obtained degrees in medicine (London University), MRCS and LRCP and qualified for the Gold Medal in Medicine.
On 22nd August 1889, he entered the Royal Navy as a Surgeon. He would come to prominence during the disturbances in Crete in September 1898. On the 6th September 1898, during the landing of seamen from Her Majesty’s Ship "Hazard" Surgeon Maillard, who had disembarked and reached a place of safety, returned through a perfect deluge of bullets into the boat and endeavoured to bring into safety Arthur Stroud, Ordinary Seaman, who had fallen back wounded into the boat as the other men jumped ashore.
Surgeon Maillard failed to bring Stroud in only through the boat being adrift, and it being beyond his strength to lift the man (who was almost dead ) out of so unstable a platform. Surgeon Maillard returned to his post with his clothes riddled with bullets, though he himself was unhurt.
Maillard was gazetted for the VC on 2nd December 1898, and received his medal 13 days later, on 15th December 1898 at Buckingham Palace from Queen Victoria. His award was notable in that he was the only Naval medical officer awarded the VC to date, and one of the few awarded when whilst the country was not at war. He retired from the Royal Navy in 1902 due to ill-health, and sadly, his health deteriorated, and he died on 12th September 1903 at “Ville d’Eu”, Sherborne Road, Bournemouth, aged just 40. He was buried in Wimborne Road Cemetery, Bournemouth. His medal was sold at Spink’s auction house in November 1998, and was purchased for £50,000 by the Ashcroft Trust, and is now displayed at the Imperial War Museum.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: LORD ASHCROFT GALLERY, IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM, LONDON.
BURIAL PLACE: WIMBORNE ROAD CEMETERY, BOURNEMOUTH.
William Maillard's VC (with blue ribbon) on display at Lord Ashcroft Gallery, Imperial War Museum, London (August 2014)
Cemetery Plan courtesy of Kevin Brazier
SECTION V-4, GRAVE 133 SOUTH
Courtesy of Kingswood School, Bath