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How many more Victoria Crosses can they make out of what is left of the cannons I wonder :?



Not many. The question was addressed after the last one was awarded. There was a feature on TV showing blanks ready to be inscribed with hero's name rank and number, securely locked up somewhere tighter than a fish's bum. But no, there isn't much left of the cannon to be made into medals.

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Approx 80...



The bronze for the Victoria Cross came from a captured Chinese-made cannon used by the Russians at Sebastopol during the Crimean War. What is left of the metal is kept at the army base DSDC Donnington, in Telford, Shropshire. Today, there is only enough metal left for 80 more medals. The London jewellers Hancocks, based in the Burlington Arcade in London, make the medals. The bronze has always been unstable to work with as ithas already been worked on when the cannon was made. Hancock’s have seven medals in storage but without the name and rank of the recipient and date on the back, they have no intrinsic value except their novelty. In World War Two, Hancock’s charged the armed forces the equivalent of £1.50 for a medal that today can fetch £200,000 at auction.
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What interests me is the difference in official attitudes to holders or descendents selling them. I believe American law forbids the sale of equivalent medals, while here you can get anything if you have a deep enough wallet. I've often wondered if I would want to own another persons medals I have no connection to. I doubt it, but then I don't like wearing uniform I'm not entitled to anyway - (the scout shirt from 1972 doesn't fit anymore).

I have my grandfather's (WW1 and WW2 - KIA 16.02.1941), great uncle's (KIA 23.08.1915) and father's war medals (WW2); but my family does not have the George Medal my uncle Edward won in 1940 - the first ever awarded to a Merchant Navy man. He was married to a French woman and died in his cabin when he was Master of a ship in 1957. He had a heart attack. This was in Montivideo or Buenos Aires. I would love to know where the medal ended up. It could be anywhere in the world. It is a crying shame holders have to sell medals to make ends meet.

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Unusual VC Awards


Two Victoria Cross medals have been won by men who saved the lives of their brothers:


Major C.J.S. Gough saved his brother Lieutenant H.H. Gough (who was already a VC) during the Indian Mutiny.

Trooper H.E. Ramsden saved his brother's life in the South African War in 1899.


Victoria Crosses awarded for actions other than in time of war against the enemy:


Privates D. Bell, J. Cooper, W. Griffiths, T. Murphy and Assistant Surgeon C.M. Douglas, all member of the 24th Regiment (later The South Wales Borderers), for bravery at sea in saving life in a storm off the Andaman Islands, 1867.

Private T. O'Hea (The Rifle Brigade) for extinguishing a fire in a railway car containing 2,000 lbs of ammunition at Danville Railway Station, Quebec, Canada, in 1866.


Civilian VC Awards


Five civilians have won the VC:


Mr. R.L. Mangles, Mr. W.F. McDonell, Mr. T.H. Kavanagh of the Bengal Civil Service, Mr. G.B. Chicken, a volunteer of the Indian Naval Brigade, during the Indian Mutiny, 1857.

Reverend J.W. Adams, of the Bengal Ecclesiastical Department, during the 2nd Afghan War, 1879.



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