Wesley Edwards was the son of John Wesley Edwards of 55 Freeman Street, Coventry. He had possibly volunteered before 1914 to serve in the Staffordshire Yeomanry. They were in training in East Anglia in the 1st Mounted Division. In October 1915 it was planned that they should go to Salonica to join the forces defending Greece against the Turks. While still at sea the orders were changed and they went to Egypt to protect the Suez Canal which was also threatened by the Turks. They arrived in Cairo by the end of November and became part of the Western Frontier Force. Trooper Edwards was promoted to Sergeant at some point in 1916 and in October he was further promoted to Second Lieutenant in the Worcester Yeomanry, the Queen's Own Worcestershire Hussars. He was wounded almost immediately on the 9th January 1917 but returned to service. During this year the Worcestershire Hussars were in the Australian Mounted Division and in October General Allenby decided to mount a major attack on the Turks and with the intent of capturing Jerusalem. The cavalry made a flanking attack through the desert and struck at Beersheba on the 1st November. The Worcester Hussars then distinguished themselves in a very successful cavalry charge at Huj on the 8th November, the last such charge in the history of the British cavalry. Jerusalem fell on the 9th December, and this might be accounted the first major success of the British army in the Great War. However, among the few casualties of Huj was Second Lieutenant Wesley Edwards who was posthumously awarded the Military Cross (London Gazette 1 January 1918) and was Mentioned in Dispatches (London Gazette 12 January 1918). This gallant soldier was 27 years of age and is buried in Gaza War Cemetery (XIX D 11) and commemorated on the Dudley Memorial.
Town Hall, Priory Street, Dudley
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