Highly-regarded Victoria Cross medals on show

Victoria Cross medal-winner James Johnson.
Victoria Cross medal-winner James Johnson.

Two prestigious Victoria Cross (VC) medals which were won by heroic soldiers during the First World War are on show at The Fusiliers Museum of Northumberland.

The VC is the highest military decoration awarded for valour in the face of the enemy to members of the Armed Forces of various Commonwealth countries, and previous British Empire territories.

The Northumberland Fusiliers have been awarded ten VCs, five of which were awarded during the conflict of 1914 to 1918. These were given to Thomas Bryan, Ernest Sykes, John Youll, James Johnson and Wilfred Wood.

And the museum, based at Alnwick Castle, has on show the VC medals that Sykes and Johnson won.

Sykes was honoured with the VC for his courageous actions in France in 1917, while Johnson, most notably, repelled frequent counterattacks and for six hours, under heavy fire, he held back the enemy. When, at length, he was ordered to retire, he was the last to leave, carrying a wounded man.

Three times he returned and brought in badly-wounded men under intense enemy machine-gun fire.

The medals are on show until Tuesday, October 27.