Lot Archive


№ 245


1 December 2004

Hammer Price:

A Second World War Dunkirk operations D.S.M. group of five awarded to Petty Officer M. W. Crisp, Royal Navy

Distinguished Service Medal
, G.VI.R. (J. 100655 M. W. Crisp, P.O., H.M.S. Express); 1939-45 Star; Atlantic Star; War Medal 1939-45; Royal Navy L.S. & G.C., G.VI.R., 1st issue (J. 100655 P.O., H.M.S. Osprey), together with original Admiralty condolence slip in the name of ‘Maurice William Crisp, D.S.M.’, nearly extremely fine (5) £1000-1200

D.S.M. London Gazette 16 August 1940: ‘For good services in the withdrawal of the Allied Armies from the beaches of Dunkirk.’

The original recommendation states: ‘As Chief Boatswain’s Mate Crisp was most active in organising work in embarking troops and a most inspiring influence between decks while the ship was engaged.’

Maurice William Crisp was decorated for his services aboard the destroyer H.M.S. Express (Seedie’s refers), which ship made no less than six trips during “Operation Dynamo”, two to the beaches and the other four to the pier at Dunkirk, bringing home a total of 3500 troops. During the course of these trips, Express was subjected to a brace of heavy dive-bomber attacks and was engaged by enemy held shore batteries on several occasions. In the first aircraft attack, her gunners managed to destroy one and damage another.

During the night of 31 August 1940, when sailing in company with several other destroyers 40 miles W. of Texel, Express was badly damaged by a mine, the fore part of her structure being blown back to the bridge and 19 of her ratings, including Crisp, being killed. The Ivanhoe and Esk were sunk on the same occasion, with a total loss of 191 men. Crisp, who was 36 years of age, left a widow resident at Gosport, Hampshire.