- Name: William GOATE
- D.O.B: 12th Jan, 1836
- D.O.A: 6th Mar, 1858
- D.O.D: 24th Oct, 1901
- Award: Victoria Cross
- Occupation at time of action: Lance Corporal, 9th (Queen’s Royal) Lancers, 1st Cavalry Brigade
- Book: The Complete History - Volume 1
The Racecourse, Lucknow, India 6 March 1858
6 March 1858
The Indian Mutiny 1857-59
On 2 March 1858, Sir Colin Campbell’s force reached the outskirts of Lucknow and occupied the Dilkusha Palace to the south-east of the city. The city was defended by 100,000 armed men and about 100 guns. On 5 March Major General T H Franks’ column arrived and Campbell had bridges constructed across the Gumti near the Dilkusha. Before sunrise on the 6th, British troops under Sir James Outram crossed the Gumti and marched north. At the Racecourse they were attacked by a large body of enemy cavalry. Outram’s cavalry drove them off and, led by Major Percy Smith, went in hot pursuit, reaching the enemy’s infantry posts. Here Smith was shot dead. Lance Corporal W Goate, 9th Lancers, tried to bring back his body as did Cornet Sneyd. Both failed, but Goate was awarded the VC for his gallantry in the attempt. Outram’s force camped at Ismailganj, east of the city on the Fyzabad road.
For conspicuous gallantry at Lucknow, on the 6th of March, 1858, in having dismounted, in the presence of a number of the enemy, and taken up the body of Major Smyth, 2nd Dragoon Guards, which he attempted to bring off the field, and after being obliged to relinquish it, being surrounded by the enemy’s cavalry, he went a second time under a heavy fire to recover the body. Despatch from Major-General Sir James Hope Grant, K.C.B., dated 8th April, 1858.