A PROUD day in the history of the Coldstream Guards exactly 100 years ago was commemorated on Thursday when

The 1st Battalion and Number 7 Company Coldstream Guards gathered in Windsor at the aptly named Victoria Barracks to commemorate a proud day in their history 100 years ago to the day when Lance Corporal Thomas Jackson and Captain Cyril Frisby were involved in actions which resulted in them both being awarded the Victoria Cross. The Victoria Cross is the highest order of gallantry "in the presence of the enemy" that can be awarded to service personnel in the Commonwealth.

On 27 Sept 1918 at the Battle of Canal Du Nord, near Graincourt, France, Captain Frisby was in command of a company detailed to capture a canal crossing, but when the canal was reached, the leading Platoon came under annihilating fire from a strong enemy post under the bridge on the far side of the canal. Despite impossible odds, Captain Frisby determined to capture the German Guns and asked for volunteers. Lance Corporal Thomas Norman Jackson was first to put up his hand and with two others, they climbed down into the canal under intense fire and succeeded in capturing the post with two machine guns and 12 men. Then having consolidated his objective Cyril gave timely support to a company that had lost all of its officers and sergeants, organising the defences and beating off a heavy counter-attack. Cyril was wounded in the leg by a bayonet, but stood his ground setting a noble example to his men. Thomas Jackson sadly was killed later that day and is buried overlooking the scene of his remarkable action.

The anniversary was commemorated today with a Regimental Drumhead Service with music from the Band of the Coldstream Guards, and in the presence of the descendants of Captain Frisby, former commanding officers of the Regiment and community leaders. At the same time, a VC Paving Stone was unveiled to Lance Corporal Norman Jackson in his hometown of Swinton. A party of soldiers then attended a service and wreath laying at Captain Frisby’s grave in Brookwood Cemetery in Surrey.

Commanding Officer Lieutenant Ed Launders said: “The Coldstream Guards is fortunate to have many tales of bravery in its history, but this day is a very proud one for the whole Coldstream family. While we pay tribute to the heroes of the past, their stories serve to inspire the actions of our young soldiers that serve today, who are themselves preparing to deploy overseas on operations in service of their country.”

The Coldstream Guards are undertaking operational training in Kenya next month and will deploy for frontline duties in 2020. They were awarded a total of seven VCs during the course of the First World War.

On Saturday an officer and drummer from the Coldstream Guards attended Captain Frisby's home town of Barnet in order to support local VC centenary commemorations where his commemorative VC Paving Stone was unveiled.