“Non-Combatants - Really? Decorated Bandsmen 1914-45” by Stephen Mason
17 May

“Non-Combatants - Really? Decorated Bandsmen 1914-45” by Stephen Mason

The talk will look at decorations awarded during both World Wars to serving or former British Army bandsmen. These range from the Victoria Cross to a posthumous Mention in Dispatches. In addition to the expected role of stretcher bearer which was the task normally assigned to men serving in bands it covers such areas as tank commander, escaping PoW, Battalion Commander and SOE agent so proving that service as a Bandsman could open a number of opportunities to distinguish yourself.

Stephen Mason is Chairman of WFA Middlesex branch and a long standing 'fan' of Military Music and has combined these two interests by researching initially casualties suffered by Bandsmen and former Bandsmen (recognising that service in bands could be an entry point via Boy service to the wider Army) but then moving to consider decorations awarded to them. That led to this talk which was originally given at National Army Museum before taking it to a number of WFA branches and most notably to The Royal Military School of Music Kneller Hall.

This meeting will be held in Cobham.  Members of The Western Front Association and non-members are equally welcome.  We ask for a modest £3 donation on the door.  This includes tea, coffee and biscuits at the break (before the Q&A session with the speaker).

Members joining us at Cobham can use our new cashless card system and use their credit card/phone with the new reader that will be available at the signing in desk.

To help make things easier and safer, we are asking those coming to Cobham to bring their own mug for coffee or tea.

Stephen’s talk starts at 8pm.  Doors open at Cobham at 7:15pm and the meeting starts at 7:45pm.

The photo shows Thomas Rendle a bandsman in the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry who was awarded the VC in November 1914.

Cobham Day Centre, Lushington Drive, Cobham, Surrey KT11 2LY, UK
17 May 2023 19:45