County Durham war hero's medals to be sold at Morpeth auction

Northumberland Fuslier's medals from India, South Africa and the First World War are up for auction

India, South Africa and World War One group of eight medals including distinguished conduct medal and military cross. Comprising 1316 Pte. F Poulter, 2nd Btn. Northumb. Fus. Indian General Service Medal with one clasp - Hazara 1888; Sgt. F Poulter Queen's South Africa Medal with three clasps -Transvaal, Orange Free State and Cape Colony; Act. Sgt. Mjr. F Poulter Distinguished Conduct Medal 10th Btn. Mounted Infantry; King's South Africa Medal 1902 with two clasps - South Africa 1901 and 1902; Regt. Sgt. Mjr. F T Poulter 3/9775 Northumb. Fus. Military Cross dated 14 October 1916; Victory, War and Star Medals for Sgt. F T Poulter 3/9775, all with ribbons, set in presentation case. Est. £600-800
India, South Africa and World War One group of eight medals including distinguished conduct medal and military cross. Comprising 1316 Pte. F Poulter, 2nd Btn. Northumb. Fus. Indian General Service Medal with one clasp - Hazara 1888; Sgt. F Poulter Queen's South Africa Medal with three clasps -Transvaal, Orange Free State and Cape Colony; Act. Sgt. Mjr. F Poulter Distinguished Conduct Medal 10th Btn. Mounted Infantry; King's South Africa Medal 1902 with two clasps - South Africa 1901 and 1902; Regt. Sgt. Mjr. F T Poulter 3/9775 Northumb. Fus. Military Cross dated 14 October 1916; Victory, War and Star Medals for Sgt. F T Poulter 3/9775, all with ribbons, set in presentation case. Est. £600-800

An outstanding set of medals awarded to a gallant North East soldier are to be sold at auction.

The medals belonged to Sergeant Major Frank Thomas Poulter, who served with the Northumberland Fusiliers.

They are expected to realise at least £800 in the sale on Saturday at Louis Johnson auctioneers in Morpeth in Northumberland.

The array includes the Indian Frontier Medal, the Queen’s South African Medal, the King’s South African Medal and the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

The DCM, which was awarded to Frank Poulter in 1901 in the Boer War, is for gallantry in the field in the face of the enemy and is regarded as second only to the Victoria Cross.

Frank Poulter also won the Military Cross in 1916 during the First World War.

This was ‘for conspicuous gallantry on several occasions during operations’.

“He rescued five men from a blown in dug out under heavy shell fire, led stretcher bearers with great bravery, and brought in many wounded.”

He was himself wounded in 1916 and after retiring from the army, he joined the Newcastle branch of the Corps of Commissionaires, and was employed by the Consett Iron Company.

Photograph of Sgt. Poulter mounted on a horse Est. £600-800
Photograph of Sgt. Poulter mounted on a horse
 

Frank Poulter, who lived in Thomas Street in Blackhill in County Durham, died in 1932 aged 63, leaving a widow, four sons and four daughters.

Auctioneer Barbara Turner said: “This is a very special collection of medals and interest should be high with the centenary of the First World War.”

Also in the sale is a batch of more than 30 cards and letters from novelist Catherine Cookson, her husband Tom and her secretary to a Northumberland woman with whom the writer built up a correspondence friendship.

In one letter she describes why she moved from her home in Corbridge to a more remote location at Langley in Northumberland.

The letter says: “You will note by the above address that we have flitted once again.

“The tension in Corbridge had become so great that it was either moving further out into the country or going back south; I didn’t want to do the latter.

“It was seven days a week, with callers knocking at the door until last thing at night and I could not even go into the garden without encountering them. There was no privacy whatsoever.

“Here we are out in the wilds, and life so far is so different.”

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