The AIF Project

Frederick Norman CRAIG

Regimental number1821
Place of birthBruny Island Tasmania
SchoolAdventure Bay State School, Tasmania
ReligionMethodist
OccupationBushman
AddressAdventure Bay, Bruny Island, Tasmania
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Next of kinFather, John Craig, Adventure Bay, Bruny Island, Tasmania
Enlistment date12 January 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name12th Battalion, 4th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/29/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board HMAT A8 Argyllshire on 19 April 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll12th Battalion
Recommendations (Medals and Awards)

Military Medal


Materially assisted in holding important position by courage and skill as gunner.(Lagnicourt 15 April 1917).
Recommendation date: 18 April 1917

FateKilled in Action 24 April 1918
Place of death or woundingFlanders
Age at death25
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
65
Medals

Military Medal

'For devotion to duty under heavy rifle and machine gun fire. During the enemy attack on LAGNICOURT at dawn on April 15th 1917. Prvts. [2908 C.J.] Allen and Craig were Nos. 1 and 2 gunners of a Lewis Gun respectively. When enemy broke through on the left flank and attacked their company in rear, they carried their gun and ammunition to a poslition in front and under heavy fire from snipers and machine guns kept up a steady but deadly fire and repelling a heavy frontal attack, catching the enemy in a massed formation. By their soldiers qualities these two men materially assisted in holding an important position.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 169
Date: 4 October 1917

Other detailsMedals: Military Medal, 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

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