Lot Archive


№ 504


30 June 1994

Hammer Price:

A Portsmouth Blitz B.E.M. group of three awarded to A.W. Thomas, late Private, Leicestershire Regiment

BRITISH EMPIRE MEDAL, G.VI.R. (Civil) for Meritorious Service (Alfred William Campbell); BRITISH WAR AND VICTORY MEDALS (238016 Pte. A. Thomas, Leic. R.) together with original Investiture letter and pass, and several contemporary newspaper cuttings, very fine or better (3)

A.W. Campbell served during the Great War as 238016 Private Alfred Thomas. He apparently changed his name to Campbell when his mother remarried. One of the newspaper cuttings indicates that he was taken prisoner during the first World War.

He was awarded the B.E.M. for gallantry during an air raid on Portsmouth in 1941 when, as caretaker, Portsmouth and Gosport Gas Company, he was credited with saving the Gas Company building in Guildhall Square by extinguishing incendiary bombs. He not only assisted in saving offices and valuable records, but went out of his way to climb on to the roofs of adjoining buildings, and, at great risk to himself, put out other fires which had taken hold by reason of sparks and burning debris dropping on to dry felt and other inflammable material.