Leonard James Keyworth ["Tales of the V.C."], item 4
- January 18, 2018 03:44:53 Thomas A. Lingner
TALES OF THE V. C.
Pte. LEONARD JAMES KEYWORTH, 24th London Regt. (The Queen's
(By Lieut. J. P. Lloyd).
On the night of the 25/26th May, 1915, the 24th London
Regiment (The Queen's) went forward to attack the German Positions
near Givenchy village, on the left of the La Bassée canal.
The Germans were entrenched on the forward slope of the low hill,
but in spite of this natural advantage they were forced out of
their first line with "bomb and bayonet".
Encouraged by their success, the Queen's made valiant
attempts to gain more ground, but the Germans had had time to
reorganise their defense, and offered a stubborn resistance.
Again and again the British bombers tried to bomb their way into
the enemy's trenches, but the Germans, being on higher ground, were
able to outrage them. When day broke, few of the bombers who
had gone into action with the Queen's were left unwounded.
It was for his wonderful bravery throughout this grim
struggle that Private Keyworth was awarded the Victoria Cross.
The simple story in the London Gazette which describes his conduct
gives comparatively little indication of the courage and endurance
which he displayed that night.
When Private Keyworth, with the other bombers of his
company, arrived at the foot of the German parapet, he found that
while the enemy could easily reach him with their bombs, his
own were continually falling short. And, in an attack, there is
no room for wasted bombs. The attackers must often carry their
supplies a long way; the defenders have them ready to their hands.
But he soon solved that problem. He determined to stand on the
parapet. That he would almost certainly be killed did not weigh
with him at all. He could throw further - that was all that
mattered. Down below he had had cover of a sort. Up there on
the parapet he was an easy target for the enemy German sniper and
Story location Givenchy
- 5456 / 60676
- Jeremy Arter
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