Roy Harris (GC)

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Roy Thomas Harris
Born (1902-08-01)1 August 1902
Cardiff, Wales
Died 18 August 1973(1973-08-18) (aged 71)
Wolverhampton, England
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service 1939–1945
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Unit Royal Engineers

Second World War

Awards George Cross
Mentioned in Despatches

Roy Thomas Harris, GC (1 August 1902 – 18 August 1973) was a British Army soldier and an Air Raid Precautions officer who was awarded the George Cross for the "conspicuous gallantry" he displayed in defusing unexploded bombs that had fallen on Langdale Road in Thornton Heath, Surrey, during the Second World War.[1]

He later joined the Royal Engineers where he reached the rank of lieutenant colonel.

George Cross[edit]

While working as the Chief Combustion Engineer to Croydon Corporation, Harris was serving as a captain in The Queen's Royal Regiment, attached to the Croydon Home Guard.

On the night of 17/18 September, a Luftwaffe bombing raid had resulted in a number of unexploded devices being found at a school on Langdale Road in Thornton Heath, Surrey. Harris proceeded to the school to defuse the bombs and save the school from certain destruction.

Harris's George Cross citation appeared in the London Gazette on 17 December 1940:[2]

The King has been graciously pleased to approve the award of the George Cross to: –

Roy T. Harris, Staff Officer, A.R.P. Engineers Service, Croydon.
For conspicuous bravery in carrying out dangerous duties.


Further reading[edit]

  • Hissey, Terry – Come if ye Dare – The Civil Defence George Crosses, (2008), Civil Defence Assn (ISBN 9780955015328)