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Victoria Cross Holders of the King's Own Royal Regiment

Lance Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson VC

Victoria Cross awarded to Lance Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson, number 2950 & 200717, 1st/4th (Territorial Force) Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment

Tom Fletcher Mayson was born on 3rd November 1893 in the John Bull Inn at Silecroft in Cumberland. He enlisted on 16th November 1914 served throughout the war with 1/4th King’s Own and was wounded twice. He was awarded the Victoria Cross for gallantry at Wieltje in Belgium on 31st July 1917. The citation records:-

“For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty, when, with the leading wave of the attack his platoon was held up by machine-gun fire from a flank. Without waiting for orders, Lance Sergeant Mayson at once made for the gun, which he put out of action with bombs, wounding four of the team. The remaining three of the team fled, pursued by Lance Sergeant Mayson, to a dug out, into which he followed them, and disposed of them with his bayonet. Later, when clearing up a strong-point, this Non Commissioned Officer again tackled a machine gun single-handed, killing six of the team. Finally, during an enemy counter-attack, he took charge of an isolated post, and successfully held it until ordered to withdraw, as his ammunition was exhausted. He displayed throughout the most remarkable valour and initiative.”

On Saturday 1st December 1917 Tom Mayson returned to Millom and Silecroft after receiving his Victoria Cross from His Majesty the King at Buckingham Palace three days earlier. At a special ceremony in Silecroft Tom Mayson was presented with a gold watch, chain and medal and an illuminated address. The watch, a handsome demi-hunter, bore a monogram on the outer case, while inside was the inscription, “Presented to Lance Sergeant Tom F Mayson, KORL Regt., with hearty congratulations and best wishes from the parishioners of Whicham and Furness on receiving the VC, September 19th, 1917”. The chain, a massive gold cable, was adorned with a choice medallion in gold and enamel of the badge of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment.

Tom Mayson died on 21st February 1958 and is buried in Whicham Churchyard, Silecroft. His Victoria Cross was left to Whicham Church from where it is on loan to the Regimental Museum to be displayed alongside his other medals. The 'Silecroft' gold chain and medal were acquired by the museum in October 2010.

Lance Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson VC
Accession Number: KONEG0228

Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson, holding bear, and some of his comrades.
Accession Number: KONEG0229

Lance Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson VC, of the 1st/4th Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment.
Accession Number: KO2981/09

Contemporary illustration of the action for which Sergeant Mayson was awarded the Victoria Cross.
Accession Number: KO1124/04b

The Victoria Cross Medal Group of Lance Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson VC.
Accession Number: KO1740/01-07

Chain and medallion presented to Mayson by the people of his local villages.  Now in the museum's collection and on display with his Victoria Cross and medal group.
Accession Number: KO2857/01

King's Own Royal Regiment, Old Comrades Association, 40th Anniversary Dinner of the 1st/4th Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment being mobilised in the First World War.  Including H Reid, Sergeant Tom Fletcher Mayson VC and G Thompson and I Thompson.
Accession Number: KO2490/138

Only a proportion of our collections are on display at anyone time.  Certain items are on loan for display in other institutions.  An appointment is required to consult any of our collections which are held in store.

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