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Victoria CrossThe most prestigious award that can ever be awarded in the United Kingdom is the Victoria Cross (civilians are awarded with its less prestigious counterpart "The George Cross"). The Leicestershire Regiment ('The Tigers') served in many campaigns throughout history, and thus, several of its ranks received the Cross. However, there are other Leicester citizens who served in other units, and even services, who were awarded with the VC.

Below, I have compiled a list of all of the Leicestershire "lads" who received  the Victoria Cross:

Name Rank Unit Campaign Date
SMITH, John Corporal Leicestershire Regiment Crimean War 1855
ASHFORD, Thomas Private The Royal Fusiliers 2nd Afghan War 1880
BARRET, John Colonel Leicestershire Regiment First World War 1918
BENT, Philip Lt Colonel  Leicestershire Regiment First World War 1917
BUCKINGHAM, William Private Leicestershire Regiment First World War 1915
BEES, William Corporal Derbyshire Regiment Boer War 1901
CHAPLIN, John Colonel  Hampshire Regiment 3rd China War 1860
CRUICKSHANK, Robert Major London Scottish Regiment  First World War 1918
KNOX, Cecil Major Corps of Royal  Engineers First World War 1919
JEE, Joseph Deputy Surgeon General 78th Regiment Indian Mutiny  1857
HANNAH, John Sergeant 83 Squadron, RAF Second World War 1940

Grave/Memorial This is the grave of John Hannah, only the third RAF pilot to be awarded the Cross during the Second World War. He is also the youngest recipient of the Cross, at the age of only 19. 

The VC itself is supplied by Hancocks & Company Jewellers of London. The metal is gun-metal from captured Russian guns from the Crimean. There is one ingot of this metal remaining, which should last for at least 100 more medals. On the back of the cross, is engraved the dates of receipt and the date of the deed. On the suspender bar is the details of the recipient (rank, name, unit etc). If the award is bestowed twice to the same person, "bars" are added.

Thomas Williams