James Leach (VC)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from James Leach (soldier))
Jump to: navigation, search
James Leach
Born (1892-07-27)27 July 1892
North Shields, Northumberland
Died 15 August 1958(1958-08-15) (aged 66)
Shepherds Bush, London
Buried Mortlake Crematorium
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  British Army
Rank Captain
Unit The Manchester Regiment
Battles/wars First World War
Anglo-Irish War
Awards Victoria Cross
Other work Police officer

James Edgar Leach VC (27 July 1892 – 15 August 1958) was a British Army officer and English 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.

Leach was 22 years old, and a Second Lieutenant in the 2nd Battalion, The Manchester Regiment, in France during the First World War. The 2nd Manchesters formed part of 5 Division, which had crossed the BéthuneLa Bassée canal and then came under heavy attack. On 29 October 1914, near Festubert, the following deed took place for which Leach and Sergeant John Hogan were awarded the VC.

Their citation reads:

For conspicuous bravery near Festubert on 29 October, when, after their trench had been taken by the Germans, and after two attempts at recapture had failed, they voluntarily decided on the afternoon of the same day to recover the trench themselves, and, working from traverse to traverse at close quarters with great bravery, they gradually succeeded in regaining possession, killing eight of the enemy, wounding two, and making sixteen prisoners.[1]

Leach later achieved the rank of Captain. After the war, he served in the Auxiliary Division of the Royal Irish Constabulary.[2] His VC is on display in the Lord Ashcroft Gallery at the Imperial War Museum, London.


  1. ^ "No. 29015". The London Gazette. 22 December 1914. p. 10920. 
  2. ^ A D Harvey, "Who Were the Auxiliaries?" Historical Journal 35, no. 3 (1992): 665-69.

External links[edit]