Heart of a Dragon, 1914–82

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Heart of a Dragon, the VCs of Wales and the Welsh Regiments, 1914–82

W. Alister Williams

ISBN 978-1-84494-028-8

Publication date: 1 November 2008

The second volume of Heart of a Dragon, covering the awards made since 1914, is scheduled for publication in 2008. It will cover forty-two recipients of the Victoria Cross who were born in Wales, died in Wales, were of Welsh parentage or gained the VC while serving with a Welsh regiment. In addition, some details will be provided on other VCs with loose associations with Wales.

Review:

This is the eagerly anticipated second volume produced by writer/publisher Alister Williams. The net has been cast wide to include VC recipients who were born in Wales, born elsewhere but of Welsh parentage, died in Wales or who gained the award whilst serving with a regiment which is today regarded as serving Wales. As with Volume 1, each entry is divided into two sections. The first deals with the basic biographical details and VC citation. The second section provides a more detailed account of the recipient’s life including his VC exploit. This makes for a reader-friendly format. Many of the accounts are ten or more pages in length and filled with great detail and interest.

One of the great delights of this excellent book is the large number of previously unpublished photographs which have come from the families of VCs. Also, there are many modern-day images of battle sites which compare with the WW1 views.  It was a pleasant surprise to come upon VCs such as Ian Liddell of the Coldstream Guards, a fascinating subject and an outstanding citation. Other notable VCs are Stephen Beattie of St Nazaire fame, David Lord, RAF Transport Command’s only VC and H. Jones, the controversial Falklands hero.  
This volume is published on 1 November and I really cannot recommend it highly enough. For its breadth of content and high quality, this book is a snip at £35.

Brian Best, The Victoria Cross Society

William Fuller, Welsh Regiment, 1914

William Charles Williams, HMS River Clyde, 1915

Charles Doughty-Wylie, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1915

Fred Barter, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1915

Rupert Hallowes, Middlesex Regiment, 1915

Samuel Meekosha, West Yorkshire Regiment, 1915

Edgar Myles, Welsh Regiment, 1916

Angus Buchanan, South Wales Borderers, 1916

James Finn, South Wales Borderers, 1916

Lionel Rees, Royal Flying Corps, 1916

Joseph Davies, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1916

Albert Hill, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1916

Hubert Lewis, Welsh Regiment, 1916

Albert White, South Wales Borderers, 1917

William Williams, HMS Pargust, 1917

James Davies, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1917

Robert Bye, Welsh Guards, 1917

Ivor Rees, South Wales Borderers, 1917

Frederick Birks, Australian Imperial Force, 1917

Lewis Evans, Black Watch, 1917

John Collins, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1917

John Fox Russell, Royal Army Medical Corps, 1917

Richard Wain, Tank Corps, 1917

Arthur Lascelles, Durham Light Infantry, 1917

Thomas Pryce, Grenadier Guards, 1918

Harry Weale, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1918

George Prowse, Drake Battalion, 1918

William Waring, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1918

John Williams, South Wales Borderers, 1918

William Bissett, Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders, 1918

Dudley Johnson, South Wales Borderers, 1918

Samuel Pearse, Royal Fusiliers, 1919

Bernard Warburton-Lee, HMS Hardy, 1940

Christopher Furness, Welsh Guards, 1940

Hughie Edwards, Royal Air Force, 1941

Stephen Beattie, HMS Campbeltown, 1942

John Linton, HM Submarine Turbulent, 1943

Tasker Watkins, Welch Regiment, 1944

David Lord, Royal Air Force, 1944

Edward Chapman, Monmouthshire Regiment, 1945

Ian Liddell, Coldstream Guards, 1945

Herbert Jones, Parachute Regiment, 1982

Heart of a Dragon: Some of the VCs featured
Welsh VC winners
 

The VC, decorations and medals of Group Captain Lionel Rees.


The VC, decorations and medals of John Linton



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