b. 12/07/1896 Odiham, Hampshire. d. 23/09/1975 Bristol, Avon.
He was born on the 12 July 1896 in Odiham, Hampshire. He was educated at Bristol Grammar School. As a 21-year-old Temporary Captain in the 8th (S) Bn., The Gloucestershire Regiment, British Army during the First World War he was awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery during the Spring Offensive.
On 21 March 1918, near Velu Wood, France, Captain James led his company forward, capturing 27 prisoners and two machine-guns. Although wounded, he refused to leave his company and repulsed three enemy assaults the next day. Two days later, the enemy having broken through, he made a determined stand, inflicting heavy losses and gaining valuable time for the withdrawal of the guns. After holding out to the last to enable the brigade to be extricated, he led his company forward in a local counter-attack, being again wounded in the process. He was last seen working a machine-gun single-handed, was wounded a third time and eventually taken prisoner.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: LORD ASHCROFT GALLERY, IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM
BURIAL PLACE: CANFORD CEMETERY, WESTBURY-ON-TRYM, GLOUCS. (ASHES SCATTERED).
Manley James' medals on display at the Lord Ashcroft Gallery, Imperial War Museum, London (August 2014).
Cemetery Plan courtesy of Kevin Brazier
Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum (May 2015)
Both the above images from the
Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum (May 2015).