Awards to the Medical Services from the Collection of the late Tony Sabell

Date of Auction: 19th June 2013

Sold for £1,200

Estimate: £500 - £600

An O.B.E. pair awarded to Mrs Lilian Doughty-Wylie, nee Adams-Wylie - whose second husband was awarded the Victoria Cross

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, O.B.E. (Military) Officer’s 1st type breast badge, silver-gilt and enamel; Queen’s South Africa 1899-1902, no clasp (Nurse L. Adams-Wylie) second with contact marks, nearly very fine and better (2) £500-600


Lilian Oimara Wylie was the daughter of John Wylie, a shipbuilder of Glasgow. She trained as a nurse at The Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh and married a junior doctor named Charles Henry Benjamin Adams. After their marriage, he changed his name by deed poll to ‘Adams-Wylie’. After undertaking study in tropical medicine, he and his wife went to India, where on 28 January 1899, he was commissioned into the Indian Medical Service with the rank of Lieutenant. Both he and his wife were engaged in work with plague victims in Bombay. At the outbreak of the Second Boer War Adams-Wylie was placed in medical charge of a party taking remounts to South Africa, leaving India in January 1900. Mrs Adams-Wylie also left for South Africa where she was engaged as a Nurse with No. 5 General Hospital at Capetown. Lieutenant Adams-Wylie volunteered to do sanitary work at Bloemfontein, where, in the course of his duties he fell victim to enteric fever and died on 2 June 1900. His widow continued her nursing duties, serving at No. 10 General Hospital at Norvals Pont, Orange Free State and at the New St. Andrew’s Hospital at Bloemfontein during 1901.

On 24 July 1900 Captain Charles Hotham Montagu Doughty, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, was wounded at Vredefort, Orange Free State. It seems likely that he met Nurse Adams-Wylie during his convalescence, since four years later, upon his return from the Somaliland campaign, they were married. Following his marriage he changed his name by deed poll to ‘Dought-Wylie’.

Later, as a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Royal Welsh Fusliers, he was killed in action at Sedd-el-Bhahr, Gallipoli, 26 April 1915, and was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross.

His widow served with the French Red Cross during the first few months of 1915. In October 1915 she took up the post of Matron at the R.N.A.S. Limenaria Hospital at Semaria, on the island of Thasos. For this service she was awarded the Greek Cross of Military Merit (not with lot) (London Gazette 3 December 1918); R.R.C. 1st Class (London Gazette 1 January 1919) and O.B.E. (London Gazette 10 October 1919).

During the Second World War she served in Cairo and was mentioned in despatches for her service with the British Red Cross Society and Order of St. John (London Gazette 6 April 1944) and was promoted to a C.B.E. (not with lot). Lilian Doughty-Wylie died in Cyprus on 24 April 1961, aged 83 years.

With a folder containing copied research.