The very fine Great War First Day of the Third Battle of Ypres attack on Shrewsbury Forest 31st July 1917 Military Medal group awarded to Corporal later 2nd Lieutenant H.J.P. Hull, 7th Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment, Territorial Force, who had seen service at Gallipoli from August 1915 with the 4th Battalion where he contracted dysentery, and then saw service on the Western Front with the 7th Battalion from May 1917, was decorated for his actions on 31st May 1917 when the officer in charge became “hors de combat”, Hull took charge, sil
The very fine Great War First Day of the Third Battle of Ypres attack on Shrewsbury Forest 31st July 1917 Military Medal group awarded to Corporal later 2nd Lieutenant H.J.P. Hull, 7th Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment, Territorial Force, who had seen service at Gallipoli from August 1915 with the 4th Battalion where he contracted dysentery, and then saw service on the Western Front with the 7th Battalion from May 1917, was decorated for his actions on 31st May 1917 when the officer in charge became “hors de combat”, Hull took charge, silenced an enemy machine gun post, and took his men forward with great bravery in a difficult movement. Gassed in November 1917, he went home and was commissioned in April 1918, and then saw further service with the 8th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment out on the Western Front, being wounded for a second time by mustard gas at Arleux on 29th October 1918.
Group of 4: Military Medal, GVR bust; (200378 CPL. H. HULL. 7/NORTH’N. R.); 1914-1915 Star; (2345 PTE. H. HULL. NORTH’N R.); British War Medal and Victory Medal; (2.LIEUT. H.J.P. HULL), these recently framed.
Condition: Nearly Extremely Fine.
NOTE: We advise collection for this item, and we cannot guarantee the safety of the frame in transit during postage. The posting of this frame is entirely at the buyers risk, and we cannot be held responsible if the glass is broken. We will however always endeavour to pack it securely if posting is required.
Together with an original photograph of the recipient in the uniform of an officer cadet wearing his Military Medal, and believed taken on the day of the presentation of his award, 3rd February 1918; the recipient’s single identity disc stamped: ‘PTE HJP HULL 2345 4NN CE’; and the recipient’s tunic medal ribbon bar.
Henry James Powell Hull was born on 22nd July 1892 in Northampton, Northamptonshire, and then moved with his family to London when aged 12, and settled in Tottenham. Having been educated at Northern Pollytechnic Secondary School in Holloway, he trained as a teacher with the Islington Training College, and having qualified, on the outbreak of the Great War, then attested for service on 10th August 1914 at Romford as a Private (No.2345 later No.200378) with the Northamptonshire Regiment, Territorial Force.
Posted to the 4th Battalion on 12th August 1914, he then embarked at Devonport for service with the 1st/4th Battalion at Gallipoli on 29th July 1915, and would have landed with his battalion at Suvla Bay on 15th August 1915, where it served as part of the 162nd Brigade, 54th (East Anglian) Division. Hull was appointed to Acting Lance Corporal on 16th September 1915, but then came down with dysentery, and was evacuated to Egypt and admitted to the 5th Canadian Stationary Hospital at Abbassia on 11th December 1915. On his partial recovery he was posted to the Rest Camp at Abbassia, and then posted to the 54th Infantry Brigade Depot at Sidi Bishr on 20th April 1915, and then rejoined his unit at Dar el Hag on 2nd May 1916. Having lost his acting rank whilst in hospital, Hull was once again appointed to Acting Lance Corporal on rejoining his unit, and he was then appointed to Acting Corporal on 9th September 1916.
Hull was promoted to Corporal on 24th November 1916 and then posted home on 23rd December 1916 and sent to the Infantry Force Depot, before being posted to No.2 Machine Gun Cadet Battalion at Pirbright on 8th January 1917 in preparation for a commission. Hull was however returned to his unit on 4th April 1917, the officer commanding ‘C’ Company of his cadet unit recording that Hull ‘in my opinion lacks power of command and shows no qualities likely to make him leader. The officer commanding the cadet battalion further wrote disparagingly of him. Hull then joined the 4th Reserve Battalion on 17th April 1917. Hull was posted for record purposes to the 6th Battalion, and then saw service out on the Western Front with the 7th Battalion from 26th May 1917, and then found himself involved in the Third Battle of Ypres, being appointed to Lance Sergeant on 17th August 1917.
Hull was awarded the Military Medal for bravery in the field in the London Gazette for 18th October 1917, his award being won during the Third Battle of Ypres in the attack on Shrewsbury Forest on 31st July 1917. An account notes that when his unit was ordered “over the top”, and the officer in charge became “hors de combat”, Hull took charge, silenced an enemy machine gun post, and took his men forward with great bravery in a difficult movement. The Battalion suffered heavily in this attack, with the Commanding Officer and three other officers being killed, a further eight officers being wounded, and 37 other ranks killed, 162 wounded, and 47 missing. Zero hour for this attack was selected as 3.30 am, when the Germans were moderately shelling No Man’s Land and causing some casualties amongst our troops who were forming up for the attack. A German barrage fell 50 to 100 yards in front of the forming up line, and within three minutes after zero hour rather heavy casualties had already occurred. Owing to the darkness, the assaulting companies were also unable to keep in a correct line, and the men were inclined to bunch together. German machine guns were then brought forward from Jeer Trench and manned shells holes in front, and enfilading fire was brought to bear on the men of the 7th Northampton’s, particularly on the left flank, and the assaulting companies became highly disorganised. It was then that the commanding officer arrived in the front line, and advanced with a handful of men and charged an enemy machine gun post, and was seriously wounded, subsequently dying of his wounds. It was in this charge forward that Hull is believed to have performed the act of bravery which would later lead to the award of his Military Medal. At the stage the 13th Middlesex came forward to assist in the action at Jeer Trench which had been taken, but owing to the enemy still holding Lower Star Post on the left, it was decided to withdraw. The 7th Battalion was relieved partly by the 13th Middlesex and partly by the 1st North Staffs later on that day.
Hull was then gassed, and posted home to recover on 7th November 1917, being then put forward for officer training, and posted to the No.2 Officer Cadet Battalion, by then at Cambridge on 7th December 1917. It was whilst Hull was in training as an officer, that he was presented with his Military Medal on 3rd February 1918. Hull would later recall that the General who presented him the medal said to him: “Young man, your Country salutes you”. He was always amused and proud when he told this snippet. During his training as an officer in Cambridge, Hull played rugby for Cambridge, and also stood in for the Oxford side on one or two occasions. He was proud of having played for both Oxford and Cambridge.
Having been commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant into the Middlesex Regiment on 30th April 1918, and saw service back out on the Western Front with the 1st/8th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment, Territorial Force, being wounded for a second time by mustard gas at Arleux on 29th October 1918, and was evacuated to England on 3rd October 1918, travelling from Boulogne to Dover, he was then treated at Horton London County Council War Hospital in Epsom, Surrey, and posted to the 5th Reserve Battalion whilst undergoing recovery. As of 11th November 1918 he was still in hospital undergoing treatment. Hull subsequently saw service during the Second World War as an Officer with the Army Cadets in North London where he was a teacher, and training young lads who were interested in serving in the army. After the war he lived for a period in Bristol, before finally moving to Frieston near Boston in Lincolnshire.