Medals to the Royal Tank Regiment from the Collection of Bill Green

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Date of Auction: 4th July 2001

Sold for £720

Estimate: £300 - £400

A Western Desert ‘Beda Fomm’ M.C. group of eight awarded to Major M. F. S. Rudkin, 2nd Royal Tank Regiment

Military Cross, G.VI.R., the reverse dated 1941; 1939-45 Star; Africa Star; Burma Star; Italy Star; Defence & War Medals; China, Republic, Medal of Honour, silver and enamels, the reverse officially numbered ‘No. 00846’, enamel chipped and suspension ring bent on the last, otherwise very fine (8) £300-400

Footnote

M.C. London Gazette 9 May 1941: “For gallant and distinguished services in the Middle East.”

The recommendation states: “For conspicuous Gallantry and Leadership. On 6th February 1941 Captain Rudkin was in command of a Troop of Cruiser tanks on the northern flank of his squadron in the vicinity of Beda Fomm. On reporting 10 enemy tanks advancing on the right rear of his squadron, Captain Rudkin was ordered to take up a position with his troop to engage these tanks and cover the withdrawal of the remainder of his squadron which had been ordered back to replenish.

Captain Rudkin under very heavy artillery and tank fire successfully covered the withdrawal, standing on successive features until one of the tanks of his troop had been disabled by enemy gun fire, and the remainder had run out of 2-pdr ammunition. He then withdrew his troop to replenish and later continued in action until nightfall.

His refusal to withdraw in the face of vastly superior numbers undoubtedly saved the situation at a very critical period.”

Medal of Honour of the National Government of the Republic of China London Gazette 30 April 1943: “For distinguished services in Burma”. One of only three such awards to the Royal Tank Regiment.

Sold with additional research, including a copy group photograph and Beda Fomm - the classic victory, by Keneth Macksey.