Tag: Noel Godfrey Chavasse VC

Liverpool Hall of Remembrance

When I first saw the City Hall in Liverpool I asked myself whether there was a war memorial in it, and naturally it sometimes helps if you go and ask…

I was not disappointed.

Known as The Hall of Remembrance, it was opened by the Duke of Windsor, then Prince of Wales, in 1921 and contains the City’s Roll of Honour.

The Roll of Honour has the names of over 13,000 servicemen men from Liverpool who died during the First World War, with the majority of those named having served in what was then formally known as “The King’s (Liverpool Regiment)” which had many battalions, 

Bell from HMS Liverpool

Eight lunette fresco panels painted by Sir Frank Salisbury (1874 – 1962) decorate the walls and were unveiled by the Duke of York in July 1923. They represent scenes headed Infancy, Duty’s Call, Sacrifice, Immortality, Renown, Remembrance, Triumph, The Silent Watch,  Undaunted, Sea Power, Conquering the Air, and Peace. The area is also decorated with heraldic devices, military badges and symbols representing the Allied Nations.

It is a very beautiful space and worth seeing if you are in Liverpool. 

I asked to see the Noel Chavasse VC entry in the roll and it was there, as are a number of other Liverpool VC holders. 

The building also has a “Chavasse Room” and there is a framed VC list outside the room.

There is also a plaque dedicated to William Radcliffe VC., MM. presumably rescued from elsewhere. 

The City Hall is a very beautiful building in its own and dates back to the late 1700’s.  It is really a ceremonial building rather than an administrative building, 

The ground floor contains the city’s Council Chamber and a Hall of Remembrance for the Liverpool servicemen killed in the First World War. The upper floor consists of a suite of lavishly decorated rooms which are used for a variety of events and functions. 

More images of the interior of the building are available at the Town Hall Website, and I have used some of the text from the website in this post.

Special thanks to the gentlemen who we so kind as to show me the hall and permit me to get a quick glimpse of that part of the building. Thanks guys. 

DRW © 2018. Created 16/06/2018

Updated: 17/07/2018 — 06:10

Noel Godfrey Chavasse VC*, MC

Noel Godfrey Chavasse (09/11/1884 – 04/08/1917) was first awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions on 9 August 1916, at Guillemont, France when he attended to the wounded all day under heavy fire.

Reproduction Gallaher cigarette card.

The Citation, Recorded in the London Gazette, issue 29802,  page 10394,  24 October 1916 reads: 

“Captain Noel Godfrey Chavasse, M.C., M.B., Royal Army Medical Corps.

For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty.

During an attack he tended the wounded in the open all day, under heavy fire, frequently in view of the enemy. During the ensuing night he searched for wounded on the ground in front of the enemy’s lines for four hours.

Next day he took one stretcher-bearer to the advanced trenches, and under heavy shell fire carried an urgent case for 500 yards into safety, being wounded in the side by a shell splinter during the journey. The same night he took up a party of twenty volunteers, rescued three wounded men from a shell hole twenty-five yards from the enemy’s trench, buried the bodies of two officers, and collected many identity discs, although fired on by bombs and machine guns.

Altogether he saved the lives of some twenty badly wounded men, besides the ordinary cases which passed through his hands. His courage and self-sacrifice, were beyond praise.”

He was awarded the  Bar to his Victoria Cross for his actions from 31 July to 2 August 1917, at Wieltje, Belgium.

The Citation, recorded in the  London Gazette, issue 30284, page 9531,  14 September 1917 reads:

“His Majesty the KING has been graciously pleased to approve of the award of a Bar to the Victoria Cross to Capt. Noel Godfrey Chavasse, V.C., M.C., late R.A.M.C., attd. L’pool R.

For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty when in action.

Though severely wounded early in the action whilst carrying a wounded soldier to the Dressing Station, Capt. Chavasse refused to leave his post, and for two days not only continued to perform his duties, but in addition went out repeatedly under heavy fire to search for and attend to the wounded who were lying out.

During these searches, although practically without food during this period, worn with fatigue and faint with his wound, he assisted to carry in a number of badly wounded men, over heavy and difficult ground.

By his extraordinary energy and inspiring example, he was instrumental in rescuing many wounded who would have otherwise undoubtedly succumbed under the bad weather conditions.

This devoted and gallant officer subsequently died of his wounds.”

Captain Noel Chavasse died of his wounds in Brandhoek and is buried at Brandhoek New Military Cemetery, Vlamertinge, Belgium. 

He is the only man to be awarded the Victoria Cross and Bar in the First World War.

In Liverpool, at Abercromby Square, there is a a statue called “Liverpool Heroes” that features Noel Chavasse as its main focus.

He is also commemorated with a bust in Liverpool Cathedral. His father, Francis Chavasse was very instrumental in the building of the Anglican Cathedral in Liverpool. The Roll of Honour is also opened on the entry for his name.

Liverpool also has a Chavasse Park in the Liverpool One shopping complex. It is not easy to find a name board unless you know where to look. I was fortunate that I found somebody that was able to assist me in finding the board.

There is a commemorative plaque to him at the National Memorial Arboretum.

© DRW 2017-2018. Created 23/04/2017. Grave image courtesy of Mark Green. Cigarette card reproduction by Card Promotions © 2003. Added Liverpool references 07/06/2018.

Updated: 20/06/2018 — 19:58
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