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  • Awards to Royal Marines Brigade - Gallipoli
  • Awards to Royal Marines Brigade - Gallipoli

Item: GB0998

Awards to Royal Marines Brigade - Gallipoli


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Awards to Royal Marines Brigade - Gallipoli

1914 Star (CH.18514. PTE. J.I. COLE, R.M. BRIGADE); and British War and Victory Medals (CH.18514 PTE. J.I. COLE. R.M.L.I.). Naming is officially impressed on all three. Board mounted, extremely fine. Also included is a duotang folder with his military biography, Brigade histories and a copy of his Service Record. Footnote: Joseph Ives Cole was born on November 4, 1896 in St. Leonard, Kent, England. He enlisted with the Royal Marines on June 11, 1914 at Chatham, listing his trade as Butcher and his religion as Church of England. At his time of enlistment, the Royal Navy had a surplus of men that they could not find ships for, so the decision was made to create a Royal Naval Division of Light Infantry, composed of one Brigade of Royal Marines, of which Cole became part of the Chatham Battalion. The other two Brigades were composed of Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve personnel. This Division was sent to Belgium when the Germans invaded. It is to be noted, that the 1914 Star was awarded to these troops after the war, the only members of the Royal Navy to be awarded this medal. The Royal Marine Brigade landed in early October 1914 and immediately went to the defence of Antwerp. This group of Royal Marines was poorly equipped, many of which had no idea of how to fire a rifle. As a result, due to the overwhelming superiority of the German troops, Antwerp was abandoned and the Marines returned to England. After refitting in England, the Royal Naval Division was sent to Egypt, where they participated in the landings at Gallipoli on April 15, 1915. These men landed on beaches Y and X, against stiff Turkish resistance. After realizing the impracticability of making any headway in this theatre of war, the British decided to withdraw all their troops from the Gallipoli peninsular. In May 1916, the Division moved to France where they finished out the war on the Western Front. Private Cole received his gratuity on May 7, 1919, confriming that he survived the war, unscathed, as their is no mention in his service record of having been wounded. (BGR240)
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