Lord Ashcroft KCMG PC has had his latest “hero of the month” article published in Britain at War, the country’s best-selling military history monthly magazine.
The June issue of the magazine has four pages on the life and career of Major Frederick Henry Bradley VC, VD, who was decorated for his bravery during a battle that has been likened to the defence of Rorke’s Drift.
Bradley, who was born in London, enlisted with the 2nd Depot Division of the Royal Field Artillery (RFA) in March 1894. Serving as a driver with the 69th Battery, RFA, during the Second Boer War, he showed such outstanding gallantry that he was awarded the VC.
During the action at Itala, Zululand, on September 26, 1901 – the day before Bradley’s 25th birthday – he and another man ran under a heavy fire to rescue a comrade who had volunteered to take badly-needed ammunition up a hill during the battle.
Once the man had been carried to safety, Bradley, who was small in size, volunteered to take the ammunition up the hill and was successful in this task after kneeling down by a bush to pray for God’s help.
Bradley survived the Second Boer War and also served during the First World War and, later, in South Africa too. He was given the honorary rank of major in 1938, while serving on the retired officers’ list. He died in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in March 1943, aged 66.
Lord Ashcroft’s articles for Britain at War over the past nine years have been largely based on excerpts from his seven books on gallantry: Victoria Cross Heroes, Special Forces Heroes, George Cross Heroes, Heroes of the Skies, Special Ops Heroes, Victoria Cross Heroes Volume II and Falklands War Heroes.
Lord Ashcroft is a military historian who has lectured extensively on courage and his various medal collections.
- Lord Ashcroft’s latest article appears in the June issue of Britain at War which is on sale now.