By Lord Ashcroft
First published in the Daily Mirror on 03 April 2020.
During the “Blitz”, the bombing campaign by Germany targeting mainland Britain during 1940-1, our monarch realised that we did not have a way of sufficiently rewarding the courage of our civilian bomb disposal teams.
This was because the Victoria Cross (VC) could only be awarded for gallantry in the face of the enemy.
George VI and his advisors were quick to respond, creating the George Cross (GC) in September 1940 for “most conspicuous courage in circumstance of extreme danger”. The GC, which became affectionately known as “the civilian VC”, will celebrate its 80th anniversary later this year. (more…)