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Army Chaplain, Hon. Maurice Berkeley Peel, MC

Army Chaplain Department
Died: France and Flanders, 15th May 1917, aged 44

  • Buried: Queant Road Cemetery, Buissy, France.
  • Awarded Military Cross and Bar, 1914 Star, British War and Victory Medals.
  • Son of 1st Viscount Arthur Wellesley Peel, former Speaker of the House of Commons
  • Husband of the late Emily Peel [nee Alington and father to David Arthur George (b1910) and Mary Emily Peel (b1912)
  • NNWFHS Memorial: Glascote and Wilnecote

Links to Relevant Information

1911 Census and Family History Information

  • Born April 23rd 1873
  • Vicar of Tamworth from 1915
  • Attended Mrs Parry's School in Slough then went onto Winchester College before attending New College, Oxford where he took his degree with Honours in History, graduating in 1895

More about the War Service of Reverand Peel, MC - An Officer armed only with his Bible and Walking Stick
Immediately war broke out he volunteered his services as a chaplain and went to France in October 1914 with the 7th Division, being awarded the M.C. early in 1915. He accompanied the men whenever they went, and at the Battle of Festubert personally led one of the battalions [1st Royal Welsh Fusiliers] of his brigade to the attack, carrying nothing but a walking stick. He fell in that action severely wounded in four places but refused to be attended to until all the other men had been looked after. He was sent home to England and took a year to recover, and in the course of that year was appointed to the living of Tamworth.

At early dawn on the 15th May 1917 (the second anniversary of Festubert) he got out of his trench to visit either a wounded man or an isolated post of men. On the way, a sniper’s bullet caught him in the chest; he fell unconscious and died very shortly, one Welch Fusilier officer crawling out and staying with him till the end.” He was awarded the Bar for his MC during this action.

A stained Glass Window was commissioned in his memory by St Editha's Church in Wilnecote which was created by Henry Holiday (1839-1927), an artist heavily influenced by the Pre-Raphaelite movement.

Sources:

  1. Tamworth Herald Article of December 1st 2013
  2. Winchester College Great War Archives
  3. St Editha's Church Website

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