Lance Sergeant John D. Baskeyfield, V.C. (d.1944)

On 20th September 1944 during the battle of Arnhem Lance-Sergeant Baskeyfield of the South Staffords 1st Airborne Division was the NCO in charge of a six-pounder anti tank gun in Oosterbeek. The Germans attacked this sector with infantry , tanks and self propelled guns seeking to overrun the battalion. During the early part of the attack Baskeyfield and his crew destroyed 2 Tiger tanks and a self propelled gun as Baskeyfield calmly commanded his men to let each tank come within 100 yards before firing. During this engagement Baskeyfield was wounded in the leg and the rest of his gun crew killed or badly wounded. Refusing to be carried to the first aid post the Lance Sergeant continued to man his gun and shouted encouragement to the troops in nearby trenches. The second phase of the German attack was more intense with mortar and shell fire, but Baskeyfield continued to fire his gun at the enemy tanks keeping them at bay. When his gun was finally knocked out he crawled to another six pounder whose crew had been killed and manned that alone crippling a self propelled gun with two hits until a shell from a German tank killed him. For his actions Lance-Sergeant Baskeyfield who was originally from Stoke on Trent was awarded the Victoria Cross, one of two won by the Staffordshire Regt during the battle of Arnhem.

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How to cite this article: Dugdale-Pointon, TDP. (24 October 2000), Lance Sergeant John D. Baskeyfield, V.C.,

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