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Auction: 24001 - Orders, Decorations and Medals
Lot: 180

A Second World War East Africa M.C. group of seven to Captain C. A. Wade, Nigeria Regiment, late King's Own Scottish Borderers, who died of wounds on 1 March 1945

Military Cross, G.VI.R., reverse officially dated '1941'; General Service Medal 1918-62, 1 clasp, Palestine (2nd Lieut. C. A. Wade. K.S.O.B. [sic]), small official correction to rank; 1939-45 Star; Africa Star; Burma Star; Defence Medal; War Medal 1939-45, good very fine (7)

Purchased February 1988.

M.C. London Gazette 30 December 1941:

'In the action at Goluin on 24 Feb 1941, by skilful handling and determined leadership he forced the enemy to withdraw from a very strong position, inflicting a large number of casualties. In the action for Marda Pass on 21/22 March he commanded his Coy with skill and initiative. By his quiet bearing and his quick appreciation of the situation he proved himself a splendid leader; and a fine example to his men.'

Claude Anthony Wade was born on 19 February 1915 and was the son of Major and Mrs Claude Wade of Ashley, Box, near Bath. He was educated at Wellington College and was an accomplished sportsman at the school, playing in the cricket XI. He later played cricket and rugby for Bath. Wade joined the 1st Battalion, King's Own Scottish Borderers on completion of his training at Sandhurst in 1935 at Catterick and won the Army quarter mile at the age of 20 during his first year's service. He saw service in Malta before being sent to Palestine in 1936 and was seconded to the West African Frontier Force just before the start of the war in 1939. Originally he joined the 3rd Nigerian Regiment but transferred to the 1st Battalion, Nigeria Regiment on 27 October 1940.

The Regiment was stationed near Bura in January 1941, leaving for Garissa on 12 February and were ordered to cross the River Juba at Mabonga on 21 February.

Extract from the War Diary written by Capt C. A. Wade:

Near Golun 24 February 1941 Noon

Armoured cars stopped in front of us -firing from what sounded like field guns about 1000y away. Coy moved Fwd ready to advance on both sides of road. One A.C. returned with news that one A.C. had been completely ******* and another very nearly so. Coy ordered to advance on right of road - B Coy on left to follow on as quickly as possible. 5 and 6 Platoons in front, 7 and 8 in rear. Contacted Banda some Europeans and a minefield after about 1 1/2 miles advance. Banda dispersed towards village on left of road - Coy killed 3 Europeans and ten Banda - no casualties - message back. 8PT continued adv on left of road, 5 and 6 on right 7 Pt in reserve -

Message Back. Advance continued about 800' further- consolidated and patrols out.

Later accounted for 2 more Banda killed and one prisoner - MB 1500 hrs: Another message back via Armoured Cars - Coy recalled and emburssed - continued advance in rear of column behind Nigerian Lt Bty.

16.30 Hrs: Coy Debussed and Deployed on left of road (Beyond Column) - M.G. and gun fire from front.
1700 Hrs: Orders for Coy to Advance on left of C. Coy
1720 Hrs: Coy Advanced - No opposition - fired at few retreating enemy- contacted road but not C.Coy.
1840 Hrs: Closed on road and returned to Tivonae Area.

On completion of the above skirmishes the enemy withdrew and the regiment continued to march to Genali. They eventually reached Addis Ababa on 10 April 1941 and were presented to Haile Selassie on 5 May on his visit to the city that day. The regiment then embarked at Berbera on the troopship Duchess of Bedford sailing to Aden then on to Mombassa, Durban and Cape Town. Various officers took leave at these ports, it is not known where Wade stopped on this voyage.

Wade was then put in command of the 10th Battalion, Nigeria Regiment and he trained with them in the Far East going to Burma in June 1944.

The War Diary entry on 1 March 1945 for the 10th Nigerian Regiment confirms his final action:

'1030 Pl of B Coy attack spur 929336 Pl of D attack 920336 after heavy Arty & Mortar Barrage. Enemy well dug in, attacks unsuccesful.

1630 Pl of C Coy attack 920336 after heavy Arty barrage - again unsuccessful. Lt Pipe killed (East Yorks), Lt Clarke and Sgt Lumsden wounded.

1700 C.O.wounded. Died later in M.D.S.

Wade is buried in the Taukkyan War Cemetery, Myanmar. Sold with the following archive comprising:

Letter sent to his father, from the War Office dated 6 January 1951 which came with two photographs of his grave.

Assorted contemporary family photographs.

A Testimonial to him from the residents of Box.

Assorted newspaper cuttings from the time of his death.

Extracts from letters which were received by his parents.

Pages (2) from the Borderer's Chronicle with his Obituary.

Letter to his parents, dated 16 March 1945 from Stephen Morgan who was Superintendent of the Nigeria Police.

Letter to his father from his nephew, dated 19 February 1950.

Assorted copied research and extracts from the war diary.

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