A local hero remembered

Every recipient of the VC is remembered with a commemorative paving stone which is laid on or near to the date of the action for which the VC was awarded and in a location that has significance for the recipient.

Robert, or Bob as he was known, was born on 5 March 1890 and lived in Spencer Road with his parents before moving as a child to Canada.

In July 1915, at the age of 25, he joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force and came across to Europe to fight in the First World War.

He achieved the rank of sergeant, a non-commissioned officer rank, in the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry and was awarded the VC for his actions in protecting the men in his platoon on 13 August 1918 near Parvillers-le-Quesnoy, France.

Sadly he died during this military action and his final resting place has never been identified.  He is commemorated on the Canadian National Vimy Memorial with over 11,000 other Canadian dead whose remains were lost or never recovered.

Councillor Tejinder Dhami, The Worshipful Mayor of Ealing said: “It is extremely important that we never forget the outstanding sacrifices made during the First World War.  I am honoured to lead this ceremony paying tribute to the exceptional bravery of Robert Spall”.

Councillor Dhami was joined by the leader of the council, Councillor Julian Bell, Rector of Acton the Reverend Dean Ayres, Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Day, Amanda Knights, Acton History Group Secretary and Treasurer, military and Royal British Legion representatives.

The commemorative paving stones are provided by the Department for Communities and Local Government and include the name, rank and regiment of the individual (at the time the VC was awarded) and the date of the action for which the VC was awarded.

The Victoria Cross (VC) is the highest award for gallantry that British and Commonwealth serviceman can achieve.  It is linked with acts of extreme bravery and is awarded for gallantry of the highest order.

For more detail on Robert Spall please see the full article on Ealing News Extra