A Collection of Awards for Burma Operations during the Second World War

Date of Auction: 27th September 2017

Sold for £300

Estimate: £300 - £400

A Second War Burma operations O.B.E. group of five attributed to Lieutenant-Colonel W. N. Devonshire, East Lancashire Regiment, attached Army Air Transport Organisation

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, O.B.E. (Military) Officer’s 2nd type breast badge, silver-gilt; 1939-45 Star; Burma Star; Defence and War Medals 1939-45, M.I.D. Oak Leaf, mounted as worn, with Daily Mail Push Ball prize medal, white metal, reverse engraved ‘Colchester July 12th 1927 Pte W. M.[sic] Devonshire’, and Imperial Continental Gas Association medal, silver (hallmarks for Birmingham 1974), reverse engraved ‘W. N. Devonshire 1824-1974 [sic]’, generally good very fine (lot) £300-400


M.B.E. London Gazette 17 January 1946:

‘For services performed at Comilla and Central Burma. Lt. Col. W. N. Devonshire has been responsible for the detailed operation of the A.A.T.O. during the period October 1944 to May 1945. Throughout the period he has shown an exceptional devotion to duty working long and difficult hours and an initiative and grasp of detail which has played a distinct part in the success of the Air Supply to the Armies in the field.’

M.I.D. London Gazette 5 April 1945:

‘in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in Burma and on the Eastern Frontier of India.’

William Nagle Devonshire was born in London, in 1904. He was educated at the Merchant Taylor’s School, and enlisted in the Rifle Brigade, 29th London Regiment (T.A.) in January 1926. Devonshire served in the ranks for 3 years and 82 days before his discharge in April 1929. He was commissioned Second Lieutenant in the East Lancashire Regiment in October 1939, and served during the Second War as a Temporary Major and Temporary Lieutenant-Colonel, attached Army Air Transport Organisation, 1944-1945. Devonshire was discharged Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel in October 1945.

Sold with the following related documentation: M.I.D. Certificate, dated 5 April 1945, with envelope addressed to ‘Major W. N. Devonshire, Catherine Lodge, Totteridge, Herts’; Second War campaign medal enclosure slip; named letter of thanks from the Army Council upon the occasion of the recipient’s release from service, dated 7 August 1945; Discharge Certificate; Release Certificate; Original Copy of the Supplement to the London Gazette, dated 15 January 1945; portrait photograph of recipient in uniform, reverse annotated ‘Bill in Burma 1945’, and other ephemera.