Thomas Riversdale Colyer-Fergusson VC

Thomas Riversdale Colyer-Fergusson (18/02/1896 – 31/07/1917) was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions on 31 July 1917 at Bellewaarde, Belgium.

The Citation, recorded by the London Gazette of 4 September 1917, Supplement: 30272 Page: 9260, reads:
“2nd Lt. (actg. Capt.) Thomas Riversdale Colyer-Fergusson, late North’n R.

For most conspicuous bravery, skilful leading, and determination in attack.

The tactical situation having developed contrary to expectation, it was not possible for his company to adhere to the original plan of deployment, and, owing to the difficulties of the ground and to enemy wire, Capt. Colyer-Fergusson found himself with a Serjeant and five men only. He carried out the attack nevertheless, and succeeded in capturing the enemy trench and disposing of the garrison. His party was then threatened by a heavy counter-attack from the left front, but this attack he successfully resisted.

During this operation, assisted by his Orderly only, he attacked and captured an enemy machine gun and turned it on the assailants, many of whom were killed and a large number were driven into the hands of an adjoining British unit. Later, assisted only by his Serjeant, he again attacked and captured a second enemy machine gun, by which time he had been joined by other portions of his company, and was enabled to consolidate his position. The conduct of this officer throughout forms an amazing record of dash, gallantry and skill, for which no reward can be too great having regard to the importance of the position won.

This gallant officer was shortly afterwards killed by a sniper.”

He is buried in the Menin Road South Cemetery, Ypres, Belgium.

© DRW 2017-2018. Created 25/04/2017. Image courtesy of Mark Green