Mid Wales

Victoria Cross WW1 hero from Ceredigion given memorial

Lewis Pugh Evans
Image caption Lewis Pugh Evans in uniform, and an S Morse Brown portrait for the National Museum Wales

The only soldier from Ceredigion awarded the Victoria Cross in World War One has been honoured 100 years after the battle in which he won it.

Lewis Pugh Evans was fighting in Belgium on 4 October 1917 when he captured a machine-gun emplacement.

He was severely wounded but led troops to capture a second target.

The lieutenant colonel, later brigadier general, had a commemorative stone unveiled in his home town of Llanbadarn Fawr, near Aberystwyth.

Gen Evans went on to become one of the most highly decorated Welsh officers in World War One.

He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order and Bar, and was mentioned in dispatches seven times.

He also received the Belgian Order of Leopold and the French Croix de Guerre.

Image caption The ceremony marking the unveiling of Gen Evans' stone

Gen Evans was in command of 1st Battalion, The Lincolnshire Regiment when he won the award.

'Lucky man'

His citation noted he had observed an enemy gun emplacement which was causing casualties and had rushed at it firing his revolver, forcing the gun position to surrender.

Despite severe wounds, he refused to have treatment but reformed his troops and led them to capture a second objective, before collapsing from loss of blood.

Image caption Poppy wreaths were laid at the stone dedicated to Gen Evans

His grandson, Christopher Evans, said he was delighted the county was honouring his grandfather, adding: "My grandfather said he was a lucky man, lucky to have survived the war and lucky to be selected and recognised by the award of a Victoria Cross though I believe he felt there were others who went beyond the call of duty in actions that may have not been recognised."

A parade was held at 14:00 BST followed by a ceremony of dedication at the war memorial in Llanbadarn Fawr.

The stone was unveiled by Lord Lieutenant Sara Edwards.

Ceredigion council leader Ellen ap Gwynn said the stone was a way of providing a lasting legacy in Gen Evans' memory.

Image caption Gen Evans' memorial

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