Special Collections

Sold on 26 September 2018

1 part


Meritorious Service Medal Groups from the Collection of Ian McInnes

Ian McInnes


№ 1054


27 September 2018

Hammer Price:

A long service and M.S.M. pair awarded to Regimental Sergeant-Major Thomas Lilley, Royal Lancaster Regiment

Army L.S. & G.C., V.R., 3rd issue, small letter reverse (552. Cr. Sgt. T. Lilley. R. Lanc: R.) initial officially corrected; Army Meritorious Service Medal, G.V.R., 1st issue (Q.M. Sjt. T. Lilley. R. Lanc. R.) good very fine (2) £300-360

Thomas Lilley was born in 1856 in Bethnal Green, London, and was a labourer before enlisting at Fort Granger on 5 August 1874, aged 18, and joining the 1/4th The King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. He was posted to Gibraltar from September 1874, being promoted to Lance-Corporal in March 1877, and to Corporal in April 1878. In January 1879 he was posted with the 1st Battalion to the West Indies, serving in Barbados and Jamaica, and was promoted to Sergeant in February 1880. Returning home in June 1882, he transferred to the 2nd Battalion in February 1884, was posted to India in March 1884, and promoted to Colour-Sergeant in April 1885 at Quetta. He was posted home from India in December 1892 and was then transferred to the Depot before being posted to the 3rd Militia Battalion in February 1895. He was awarded his L.S. & G.C. medal in January 1893 and was discharged on the termination of his second period of engagement on 11 October 1895.

On the outbreak of the Great War, Lilley volunteered for service on 28 September 1914, eventually becoming Regimental Sergeant-Major at the Bowerham Depot. He served in that capacity until 2 April 1918, when he was discharged as no longer physically fit for service. He was awarded the M.S.M. in Army Order 231 of 1925. Thomas Lilley died at his residence in Lancaster on 12 March 1930, and was buried with military honours at the Scotforth Cemetery, Lancaster. Sold with copied service papers and news cuttings together with much research, including extracts from The Lion and the Rose, an O.M.R.S. Journal article about his career and a copied portrait photograph of him in uniform in India.