b. 18/12/1892 Reading, Berkshire. d. 03/11/1943 Reading, Berkshire.
Fred Potts was born on 18 December 1892, and first came to public notice in 1913, when he saved a five year old boy named Charles Rex from drowning in the River Thames. By 1915, he was 22 years old, and a private in the 1/1st The Berkshire Yeomanry of the British Army. During the Gallipoli Campaign of the First World War the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.
On 21 August 1915 in the attack on Hill 70, Private Potts (although wounded in the thigh) remained for over 48 hours under the Turkish trenches with another private from his regiment who was severely wounded, and unable to move. He finally fixed a shovel to the equipment of his wounded comrade and using this as a sledge, dragged the man back over 600 yards to safety, being under fire all the way.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: LORD ASHCROFT GALLERY, IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM, LONDON.
BURIAL PLACE: READING CREMATORIUM, READING, BERKSHIRE. ASHES SCATTERED.
Frederick Potts' medals on display at the Lord Ashcroft Gallery, Imperial War Museum, London (August 2014).
Brock Barracks, Reading
Trooper Potts Way, Reading
Anne Ames (Potts' granddaughter) at his VC Paving Stone unveiling August 2015)
Trooper Potts Memorial at Forbury Gardens, Reading
Chris Tarrant OBE at the unveiling of the Potts Memorial
Anne Ames inspects the Trooper Potts Memorial
Potts at his investiture on 9th December 1915
The above two plaques are at the Forbury Gardens Memorial, Reading
All images of the Trooper Potts Memorial, the plaques, the pictures of its unveiling in August 2015, and the picture of Potts investiture are shown with the permission of Stewart Turkington (photos) and Richard Bennett (Chairman of the Trooper Potts VC Memorial Trust). Many thanks for their inclusion.
War Illustrated, 18th August 1917
(Courtesy of the Trooper Potts VC Memorial)