Sheffield memorial hope for Victoria Cross hero
HE was honoured with the highest military award possible for his bravery during conflict.
But the final resting place of Lieutenant George Lambert VC is here, in this overgrown grave, at the disused Wardsend cemetery in Sheffield far away from his Irish home town.
Lt Lambert returned to Hillsborough Barracks, where he died on the parade ground in 1860, aged 40, after the Indian Mutiny of 1857.
Now former soldier Les Bristow is hoping to ‘remember’ the soldier by either repatriating his body or creating a new memorial at the barracks site.
Former Coldstream Guards Sgt Les, 58, of Norton Lees, said: “I was doing some research into war graves when Lt Lambert’s name came up.
“The more I looked into it I was told there had been an attempt to repatriate him some years back to County Armagh in Northern Ireland but that there wasn’t the money to do it.
“I thought if it was just a lack of £2,000 or £3,000 then I could help.
“As an ex-serviceman I know that anybody who does that job for their country is a hero, never mind getting a Victoria Cross, and for that grave to be in its current state is not good.
“His grave is totally overgrown but he is somebody who fought for his country and was honoured for it.”
Lt Lambert, of the 84th Regiment of Foot, which became part of the York and Lancaster Regiment, is the most highly-honoured soldier buried in the cemetery off Livesey Road, near Owlerton Stadium.
But George Proctor, a committee member of The Friends of Wardsend Cemetery, said the group would ‘oppose’ any move of Lt Lambert.
He said £3,000 had been spent on restoring graves after a health and safety review and when the headstone of Lt Lambert had been damaged by vandals in 2000, it was repaired and set in concrete for protection.
Site manager Les is now hoping to attract sponsorship to cover the cost of remembering Lt Lambert, most likely with a memorial.
He added: “I think it would be fitting for a memorial to be placed at the barracks site.”
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