Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (19 & 20 July 2017)

Date of Auction: 19th & 20th July 2017

Sold for £1,300

Estimate: £1,000 - £1,400

A Great War C.B.E. group of four awarded to Colonel E. F. Sulivan, East Surrey Regiment, late 67th Foot

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, C.B.E. (Military) Commander’s 1st type neck badge, silver-gilt and enamel; Afghanistan 1878-80, 1 clasp, Kabul (2nd Lieut: E. F. Sulivan. 67th Foot), minor official correction between initials and surname; Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902, 2 clasps, Cape Colony, South Africa 1902 (Lt: Col: E. F. Sulivan. E. Surrey Rgt:); British War Medal 1914-20 (Col. E. F. Sulivan.), together with the related miniature awards, all housed in a Spink, London, velvet lined, glazed case with desk-stand fitting to reverse, lacquered, good very fine (4) £1000-1400


C.B.E. London Gazette 3 June 1919.

Ernest Frederic Sulivan was born in St George’s, Hanover Square, London on 12 May 1860, the son of the Rev. John Filmer Sulivan and his wife Adelaide, and was educated at Harrow and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. Commissioned Second Lieutenant on 13 August 1879 into the 67th Foot, he saw action with them at Kabul in December 1879, including the capture of Sherpore. He was promoted to Lieutenant on 24 June 1881 with the 2nd Battalion, Hampshire Regiment and to Captain on 1 August 1886. He was posted to the 1st (City of Bristol) Volunteer Battalion, the Gloucestershire Regiment, as adjutant on 31 December 1886 where he remained until 30 December 1891. He retired from the service on 10 February 1892 and was posted to the Reserve of Officers. He was promoted to Major on 21 April 1900 and on 1 January 1902 he was appointed Honorary Lieutenant Colonel of the 4th (Militia) Battalion, East Surrey Regiment and commanded the Battalion in South Africa. In early 1908, he assented to be transferred to the Special Reserve of Officers retaining the rank and seniority which he held while in the Militia and was appointed Honorary Colonel on 6 September 1908. He resigned his commission on 2 March 1909 and was granted permission to retain his rank and wear the prescribed uniform.

On 19 November 1914 as Lieutenant Colonel and Honorary Colonel he was appointed Commanding Officer of the 10th Battalion, The East Surrey Regiment. He also served in France and for his services during the Great War he was awarded the C.B.E. and British War Medal. He relinquished his commission on 9 May 1919 as Captain (Hon. Colonel retired, Special Reserve).

Ernest Frederic Sulivan married Florence Mary Houldsworth in 1886 and had six children. Three of his sons were killed in action or died of wounds during the Great War. He died in Woking, Surrey on 14 October 1928.

A number of photographs and letters relating to Colonel E. F. Sulivan, from the Boer War to 1919, are held by Surrey History Centre, Woking.

For the medals to Sulivan’s three sons see lots 236, 371, and 400.