Wednesday, October 14, 2009

An award for gallantry in Tunisia in 1943

This article is about the award of the Military Medal in 1943 to Sergeant John Branthwaite from Moor Row, a small village near Cleator Moor in West Cumbria. In the latter part of the campaign in Tunisia Sergeant Branthwaite led seven others into action against a much superior force which gained the day for the Allies.

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Blogger ritsonvaljos said...

The following is a transcript of article taht appeared in ‘The Whitehaven News’, Thursday 6 May 1943

Awarded Military Medal

Sergt. John Branthwaite, a Border Regiment “paratroop” has been awarded the Military Medal for gallantry during an action in which he led a section of seven men against a much larger enemy force in Tunisia. They killed 20, captured 24, and routed the rest.

The information was received by Mrs M.A. Edmonds, 91 Ennerdale Road, Cleator Moor.

Prior to the war, Sergt Branthwaite, who is aged 26, worked most of his time as a grocer in London. He was adopted at an early age by Mrs Edmonds when his mother died in Moor Row.

Mrs Edmonds, who is aged 82, has been asked by Sergt Branthwaite to accompany him to Buckingham Palace for the decoration ceremony but has declined on account of the difficulties or wartime travel.

During the civil war in Spain Sergt. Branthwaite served with the International Brigade and was in some heavy engagements.

Acknowledgement of sources:

‘The Whitehaven News, Thursday 6 May 1943 (page 4)

(C/O Cumbria County Council Archives, Whitehaven Records Office)

[NB - there was a photograph of Sgt Branthwaite in the newspaper. It would be interesting to hear from any relatives or family friends who may have additional information or photographs of Sgt Branthwaite]

Wednesday, 14 October, 2009  

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