James Anson Otho Brooke
|James Anson Otho Brooke|
Captain Brooke's grave in Zantvoorde British Cemetery, Zonnebeke, Belgium
3 February 1884|
29 October 1914 (aged 30)|
|Buried||Zantvoorde British Cemetery|
|Years of service||?-1914 †|
|Unit||The Gordon Highlanders|
|Battles/wars||First World War|
James Anson Otho Brooke VC (3 February 1884 – 29 October 1914) was a Scottish recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
Brooke was a 30-year-old lieutenant in the 2nd Battalion, Gordon Highlanders, British Army during the First World War when the following deed took place at the First Battle of Ypres for which he was awarded the VC.
On 29 October 1914 near Gheluvelt, Belgium, Lieutenant Brooke led two attacks on the German trenches under heavy rifle and machine-gun fire, regaining a lost trench at a very critical moment. By his marked coolness and promptitude on this occasion, Lieutenant Brooke prevented the enemy from breaking through the British line at a time when a general counter-attack could not have been organised. Having regained the lost trench, he went back to bring up supports, and while doing so, was killed.
Lieutenant Brooke was posthumously promoted to captain, effective to September 1914.
His name also appears on Aberdeen War Memorial, Colebrook War Memorial, St Ronan's Church Memorial, and Enniskillen War Memorial. A 21 cm mortar he captured is on display at Enniskillen Castle.
A Victoria Cross commemorate stone bearing his name was laid at Kingswells Hall near Aberdeen in October 2014 to mark the centenary of the award. The hall was built with the help of Brooke and the church war memorial sited opposite also bears his name.
- "No. 29074". The London Gazette (Supplement). 16 February 1916. p. 1700.
- CWGC entry
- Gerald Gliddon (1994). 1914.
Although James Brooke is buried in Belgium his memory is also commemorated at the Springbank Cemetery, Aberdeen, in the family grave. The memorial bears the following inscription: Erected by Captain Harry V. Brooke of Fairley late 92nd ...
- Buzzell, Nora. (1997) The Register of the Victoria Cross (3rd Ed.). This England Press. ISBN 0-906324-27-0
- Doherty, Richard and David Truesdale (2000). Irish Winners of the Victoria Cross. Four Courts Press. ISBN 1-85182-442-1
- Gliddon, Gerald (Ed.) (1994) 1914 (VCs of the First World War). Alan Sutton Publishing, Ltd. ISBN 0-7509-1444-0
- Harvey, David (1999). Monuments to Courage. Royal United Services Institute for Defence Studies.
- Ross, Graham and William Reid (1998). Scotland's Forgotten Valour. ISBN 1-899272-00-3