To be auctioned in London by Noonans, Mayfair: Auctioneers and Valuers - 26 July 2023
A fine Great War ‘Western Front’ V.C., D.C.M. group of five awarded to Sergeant A. Loosemore, 8th Battalion, Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment), for his great gallantry south of Langemarck on 11 August 1917: after two members of his section had been killed beside him, he fought with every means at his disposal - machine-gun, bomb, rifle and revolver - to thwart a determined counterattack which appeared to many as though it must succeed, and accounted for about twenty of the enemy as well as a number of snipers, before returning to his original post with a wounded comrade under heavy fire.
Remarkably, Loosemore’s V.C.-winning exploits came the day after he was reputed to have shot down with his Lewis gun a German fighter that was engaged in a ‘dog-fight’ with a British aircraft, this saving the British pilot’s life.
Subsequently awarded the D.C.M. for his gallantry with the 1st/4th Battalion at Zillebeke during a raid on 20 June 1918 - ‘a highly successful operation, 11 prisoners and one Machine Gun being captured and numerous casualties being inflicted on the enemy’ - Loosemore was severely wounded by machine gun fire at Villers-en-Cauchies on 11 October 1918, resulting in his left leg being amputated. He never fully recovered from his war wounds, and died as a result of tuberculosis in 1924
Victoria Cross, reverse of suspension bar engraved ‘No. 15805 Pte. A. Loosemore. 8th. Bn. West Riding R.’, reverse of Cross engraved ‘11. Aug. 1917.’; Distinguished Conduct Medal, G.V.R. (15805 Sjt: A. Loosemore. V.C. 1/4 W. Rid: R.); 1914-15 Star (15805. Pte. A. Loosemore. W. Rid. R.); British War and Victory Medals (15805 Sjt. A. Loosemore. W. Rid. R.) recently re-mounted, but together with the original court-mounted riband bar, and housed in a contemporary Hunt & Roskell, London, case, traces of lacquer, light pitting and contact marks, nearly very fine and better (5) £180,000-£220,000
When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
- - - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle