Personal info

  • Name: Adrian Paul CARTON de WIART
  • D.O.B: 5th May, 1880
  • D.O.A: 3rd Jul, 1916
  • D.O.D: 5th Jun, 1963
  • Award: Victoria Cross
  • Occupation at time of action: Temporary Lieutenant Colonel, 4th Dragoon Guards (Royal Irish), commanding 8th Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment, 57th Brigade, 19th Division
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Sources & Acknowledgements

La Boisselle, France 3-5 July 1916

3-5 July 1916

More details about:
The Somme, France 1-2 July 1916 

La Boisselle lies on the Bapaume Road about two miles north-east of Albert. On 1 July, the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the attack there on the German line by the 34th Division failed to make headway and the 19th Division was brought up. On 2 July the 58th Brigade established itself south of La Boisselle and the 57th Brigade was ordered to continue the assault. The brigade attacked at 3.15am on the 3rd but the capture of the village was not completed before the end of 4 July and fierce fighting continued the following day, when the 23rd Division’s objective was Horseshoe Trench, on high ground between La Boisselle and Mametz to the south-east, just beyond Fricourt. Despite heavy casualties progress was made and Horseshoe Trench was taken. It was here that T/Lieutenant T O L Wilkinson, 7th Battalion The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, and Temporary Second Lieutenant D S Bell, 9th Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, distinguished themselves. Corporal Colwill and Private Batey, who assisted Bell, were each awarded the DCM. In the fighting on the 3rd Temporary Lieutenant Colonel A P Carton de Wiart, commanding 8th Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment, had taken charge of 8th Battalion The North Staffordshire Regiment, 10th Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment and 10th Battalion The Warwickshire Regiment, when their commanders became casualties. It was due to his courage and determination under heavy fire that the British managed to maintain their positions. In the course of that day Lt W Jennings, 10th Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment, was wounded in the leg. Private T G Turrall dragged him to a shell-hole and used part of an entrenching tool as a splint. He had to fight off German attacks and at one point, during a German counter-attack, feign death. Turrall remained with Jennings for three hours and finally brought him back to British lines. Jennings died a few hours later.


 For most conspicuous bravery, coolness and determination during severe operations of a prolonged nature. It was owing in a great measure to his dauntless courage and inspiring example that a serious reverse was averted. He displayed the utmost energy and courage in forcing our attack home. After three other battalion Commanders had become casualties, he controlled their commands, and ensured that the ground won was maintained at all costs. He frequently exposed himself in the organisation of positions and supplies, passing unflinchingly through fire barrage of the most intense nature. His gallantry was inspiring to all. 

Supplement to The London Gazette of 8 September 1916. 9 September 1916, Numb. 29740, p. 8869

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