Wilfrid Edwards ["Tales of the V.C."]

Title in English

Wilfred Edwards enlisted as Private in the 7th Battalion, The King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (KOYLI)during the First World War and was awarded the VC for his actions on 16 August 1917 at Langemarck, Belgium, during the Battle of 3rd Ypres. On that day the 7th KOYLI were tasked to advance and capture enemy positions to their front, unfortunately for them, besides trenches, they also contained concrete blockhouses from which the battalion was lashed by machine gun fire. This caused the death or injury of all his company's officers, thereby creating confusion and halting the advance. At this time Private Edwards, without hesitation and under heavy machine gun and rifle fire, ran forward and threw grenades ('bombed') through the loopholes; he then, with enormous risk to himself, actually climbed on top of the construction and waved to his company to advance. Continuing aggression on his part was rewarded by the three German officers and 30 other ranks who occupied the blockhouse surrendering to him. Later during the advance he did most valuable work as a messenger('runner') and eventually guided most of the battalion out through very difficult ground, again a most dangerous task. Edwards was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in December 1917 and was demobilised in June 1919. He re-enlisted in the army when World War II broke out and rose to the rank of Major. He died in January 1972 and his medals are currently displayed in the Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry Museum, Doncaster, England. The attached account of his actions was written by James Price Lloyd of the Welsh Regiment, who served with Military Intelligence. After the war, the government to destroyed all the archives relating to this propaganda (section MI 7b (1)). They were regarded as being too sensitive to risk being made public. Remarkably these documents have survived in the personal records of Captain Lloyd. Many of these papers are officially stamped, and one can trace the development of many individual articles from the notes based on an idea, to the pencil draft which is then followed by the hand-written submission and the typescript. The archive "Tales of the VC" comprises 94 individual accounts of the heroism that earned the highest award for valour, the Victoria Cross. These are recounted deferentially and economically, yet they still manage to move the reader. Date stamp: 26 November 1917.

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Article with annotations.

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Number of items
Person 1
Wilfrid Edwards
Born: February 16, 1893 in Norwich, Norfolk
Died: January 4, 1972 in Leeds, West Yorkshire
Person 2
James Price Lloyd
Origin date
August 16, 1917 – August 16, 1917
Propaganda, Remembrance, Trench Life
Western Front
Jeremy Arter
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    Wilfrid Edwards [


    Wilfrid Edwards ["Tales of the V.C."]

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