About this Product
The Victoria and George Crosses are the highest military and civil decorations of the United Kingdom, awarded for gallantry. The Victoria Cross, introduced in 1856, is awarded to members of the armed forces of various Commonwealth countries for valour in the face of the enemy, while the George Cross was introduced during World War II so that civilians could also be awarded for acts of heroism, or conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme danger. There have been 1,356 Victoria Crosses awarded, and there have been 406 recipients of the George Cross since 1940. In November 2010 a major new gallery opened at the Imperial War Museum London, with the world's largest collection of Victoria Crosses, belonging to Lord Ashcroft, went on display for the first time alongside the Imperial War Museum's existing collection of both Victoria Crosses and George Crosses. The Lord Ashcroft Gallery tells the stories of those men and women who were awarded medals for gallantry and brings to life the experiences of those who fought, served and died in the line of duty, whether on the front line or on the home front. This book reveals the fear and danger faced and overcome by all these ordinary men and women who became extraordinary heroes.
Ruth Sheppard read Ancient and Modern history at St John's College, Oxford and has an interest in all periods of history, but a particular fascination with the role of civilians caught up in the Second World War. Based at the Osprey editorial office for a number of years, she edited a large number of Osprey titles, and is the author of two other titles of military history. She is now a freelance editor and writer based in Oxfordshire.Lord Ashcroft, KCMG is an international businessman and philanthropist. He has many, varied business interests with significant investments and participation in both public and private companies in the United Kingdom, United States and Caribbean.He is Deputy Chairman of the Conservative party in the UK and is also Deputy Treasurer of the International Democratic Union. Alongside his business acumen, Lord Ashcroft also has altruistic endeavours that focus on his areas of particular interest, crime prevention and education. Lord Ashcroft is founder and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Crimestoppers, the only UK charity dedicated to solving crimes, and Chairman of the Trustees of Ashcroft Technology Academy and Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University in the UK. The Ashcroft VC Collection now has 155 medals, the first VC being acquired in 1986. For more information www.lordashcroft.com