The Rorke's Drift VC
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|16th June 2003||Cpl W W Allen VC - TV Programme|
By Martin Everett
A relative of Cpl Allen living in Sheffield has a family heirloom - a model ship - a three-decker - HMS Marlborough - made by Cpl Allen. The relative knew little about Cpl Allen and his significant involvement in the defence of Rorke's Drift. The TV programme is about his quest to find out about the man. It is called 'Antiques Ghost Show' and will be broadcast on Living TV on July 8. I do not have a time.
What is interesting is that a preview of the programme states that the HMS Marlborough was the ship in which Cpl Allen sailed home. Not true. However, there was a ship called the Marlbrough which the Duke of Wellington used to sent despatches home from the Peninsula campaign. This ship contained the vital letter to Horse Guards commending the 2/24th for saving the Foot Guards at Talavera in August 1809. The Marlbrough floundered in the Bay of Biscay. Sir John Fortescue in his History of British Amry states that the 24th were never given true credit for their actions at Talavera. Could this be Cpl Allen's masterpiece?