Personal info

  • Name: Frank Crowther ROBERTS
  • D.O.B: 2nd June, 1891
  • D.O.A: 2nd April, 1918
  • D.O.D: 12th January, 1982
  • Award: Victoria Cross
  • Occupation at time of action: Acting Lieutenant Colonel, commanding 1st Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment, 24th Brigade, 8th Division
  • Book: The Complete History - Volume 2
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West of the Somme and Pargny, France 22 March-2 April 1918

22 March-2 April 1918

More details about:
The First World War 1918 

When the German Spring offensive opened on 21 March 1918, XIX Corps was in the line south of Péronne. 8th Division was moved towards the front on 22 March but the British were being pushed steadily back. On the 23rd Péronne fell and the British, withdrawing across the Somme and its accompanying canal, sought to hold a line to the south along the west bank of the river. At about 8pm, Lieutenant Colonel F C Roberts, 1st Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment, became aware that the Germans had crossed the Somme and occupied Pargny, south of where the Amiens to St Quentin road crossed the river. Roberts at once assembled a small force, attacked the enemy and drove the surviving Germans across Pargny bridge. On the 25th XIX Corps was forced back from the canal and in fighting on the 27th Roberts was wounded. However, the Citation for his VC covers twelve days of the action occasioned by the German offensive.

Citation

 During continuous operations which covered over twelve days, Lt Col Roberts showed most conspicuous bravery, exceptional military skill in dealing with the many very difficult situations of the retirement, and amazing endurance and energy in encouraging and inspiring all ranks under his command. On one occasion the enemy attacked a village and had practically cleared it of our troops, when this officer got together an improvised party and led a counter-attack which temporarily drove the enemy out of the village, thus covering the retirement of troops on their flanks who would otherwise have been cut off. The success of this action was entirely due to his personal valour and skill. 

Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 7 May 1918. 8 May 1918, Numb. 30675, pp. 5555-56

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