Lt Col. James Neville Marshall 12.06.1887 - 04.11.1918

V.C.. M.C. & Bar. Chevalier de L'ordre de Leopold and Croix de Guerre

James Neville Marshall -


Known as Neville by his family


Pictured in 1917

James Neville Marshall

12.06.1887 - 04.11.1918

Victoria Cross

Military Cross & Bar

Chevalier de L'ordre de Leopold (Belgium)

Croix de Guerre (Belgium)

King Edward VI School


Picture of King Edward VI Gammar School, Camp Hill in 1904

Solihull / Birmingham 

Family move to Acock's Green, Solihull in 1894.

Neville attended Wellesbourne House Private School where he obtained a Foundation Scholarship to King Edward VI Grammar School, Camp Hill, Birmingham.

Life in Harlow

Neville moved to the Latton district of Harlow in 1910 and established himself as a veterinarian working mainly with horses  

Harlow 1910 

Neville moved to Harlow in 1910 residing in Latton.

He later purchased Bromley's Farm and established himself in the local horsing community where he met his future bride.

Outbreak of War


At 11pm on 4th August 1914, Britain declared war on Germany  

Britain enters World War I 

At the onset of World War I, Britain declared war on Germany.

This followed Germany's invasion of Belgium on 4th August 1914 who two days earlier had refused to give up its neutrality to allow German troops across its borders to attack France.

Irish Guards

Having recovered from the wounds he suffered in Belgium, he joined the 2nd Batt (Reserve) Irish Guards in December 1915

Irish Guards (Special Reserve) 

Following his short career and discharge from the Belgium Army and his subcequent convalescence at home, Neville Marshall joined the Irish Guards (Special Reserve) in December 2015 attending  Warley Barrocks, Brentwood before entering the campaign in France in May 1916

Killed in Action

Lt Col. James Neville Marshall was killed whilst leading his men across the Sambre-Oise Canal on 4th November 1918

Killed 4th November 1918 

Lieutenant Colonel James Neville Marshall was killed in action just 7 days before the end of the war.

He was 31 years old and an acting Lieutenant Colonel in the Irish Guards, British Army, attached to the Lancashire Fusiliers, commanding 16th Battalion at the Battle of the Sambre-Oise canal.

Military Cross & Bar

Lt Col. James Neville Marshall was awarded the M.C & Bar.

Awarded for "an act or acts of exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy"

Military Cross & Bar 


Awarded the M.C. for the work he did and example he set whilst with the 1st Batt Irish Guards near Ypres in 1917


His Bar was awarded in 1918 for the following action.

He was ordered to take a company and two platoons and fill a gap and capture a position in the hands of the enemy.

He succeeded splendidly, and, advancing further than the unit on his left, he formed a defensive flank and beat off a hostile attack. Though wounded early in the attack, his courage and fine leadership were chiefly responsible for the success of the operation.

Belgium Campaign Medals


Awarded the following medals: 

  • Croix de Guerre (Left)

  • Chevalier de L'ordre de Leopold presented to him by the King of the Belgium's, King Albert  

Place of Birth

2 Crosby Place

Steven Street



(The end house on the left)

Born 12th June 1887

Father: James Henry Marshall

Mother: Mary Marshall (nee Walmsley)

Sisters: Dorothy, Mary Louisa, May & Nanny Constance

Brother: Klein

Birmingham University


Worked at Birmingham University Medical Faculty in a clerical role. 

Early work years

He became a clerk at the Birmingham and Midland Institute and later worked in the Medical Faculty of the University of Birmingham in a clerical capacity.

Whilst in Birmingham he reportedly studied veterinary practice.


Edith Mary Taylor and James Neville Marshall were married at St Mary's Church, Latton in September 1911

Wedding to Edith Mary Taylor 

Whilst working as a veterinarian, he met and married Infant school teacher Edith Mary (Maud) Taylor.

The marriage took place at St Mary's Church, Latton on 20th September 1911

Belgium Field Artillery

Having been refused entry into the British Army Veterinary Corps, Neville left England for Antwerp on Sept 13th to join the Belgium 1st Reg Field Artillery

Belgium Field Artillery  

Having obtained his passport on 11th Sept 1914 and his permit to travel, Neville headed for Antwerp two days later to volunteer for the Belgium Army being assigned to the 1st Regiment Field Artillery.

He suffered three wounds and was discharged as being medically unfit, returning to England in January 1915 

Wounded 10 times!


In total, Neville Marshall was wounded 10 times throughout the war including being bayoneted in the face. 

War Wounds 

As well as the three wounds he received in Belgium, Neville was also wounded seven times while serving with the British Army. The worst of these was when he was shot in his side in July 1916 resulting in him again returning to England where he was to remain for seven months.

Last Resting Place


James Neville Marshall is buried at Ors Communal Cemetery, Ors, Nord. France. 

Ors Communal Cemetery 

At Ors Communal Cemetery in France, he shares a last resting place with Lt James Kirk V.C. and the war poet Wilfred Owen, who died in the same engagement and who previously described this Old Edwardian as “bold, robust, dashing, unscrupulous, cruel, jovial, immoral, vast-chested, handsome-headed and of free coarse speech”.

Victoria Cross

Lt Col. James Neville Marshall was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest military decoration awarded "for valour 

in the face of the enemy"

Victoria Cross 


Posthumously awarded the V.C. for the following action in which he was killed.

On 4 November 1918 at the Sambre-Oise Canal, near Catillon, France, when a partly constructed bridge came under concentrated fire and was broken before the advanced troops of his battalion could cross. Lt Col Marshall at once went forward and organised parties to repair the bridge. 

The first party were soon killed or wounded, but by personal example he inspired his command and volunteers were instantly forthcoming. Under intense fire and with complete disregard of his own safety he stood on the bank encouraging his men and helping in the work.

When the bridge was repaired and whilst attempting to rush across at the head of his Battalion, Lieutenant Colonel Marshall was killed just a few yards from the opposite bank of the canal.

On 30th April 1919, in the Ballroom at Buckingham Palace, his widow was presented with his Victoria Cross by

His Majesty King George V