There was a real Xmas good news result from our 10th December auction when a 1941-42 Malta Blitz George Medal group to Gunner Bernard Allen Ridgway, Royal Artillery, was re-united with the recipient’s daughter. Her father had sold the medals years ago in order to be able to purchase a pair of spectacles and she fought off a spirited telephone bidder with the Lot finally selling for £3894.
The George Medal was awarded for: “On 5th May 1941 when a mine exploded in Casemate Barracks, this man was employed on Fire Fighting Duties. Fire broke out following the explosion and Gnr Ridgway took his hose right into a room where masonry was still falling and S.A.A. was exploding. He worked for three quarters of an hour, though the raid was still in progress and mines continued to fall. In this instance he set a high example by remaining in the forefront where there was great danger. On 14th September 1941, this man again showed great resourcefulness when a fire broke out in the Central Civil Hospital, and by his prompt action, prevented what might have been a serious fire. On 15th March 1942 he was with the P.A.D. shore party carrying out fire fighting work in Valletta, and with disregard for personal safety helped to extinguish a fire on top of a building which was in dangerous condition. He then accompanied the F.R.E. Rescue Party to another part of the town, where another bomb had fallen. The building was in a dangerous state and Gnr Ridgway with the party rescued a man, his wife and 3 children from a fifth floor, the lower four floors having collapsed. This rescue was carried out under very difficult conditions and at great personal risk.”