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It's impossible to precisely assign all the VCs to a particular campaign, offensive or battle during the Great War, but if this limitation is accepted the following rough designations can be made.

The 628 awards of the Victoria Cross given for action during the First World War account for almost half the 1356 Victoria Crosses awarded throughout its history; in comparison the Second World War saw 181 medals awarded. 

On the lists below


Battle of Mons VC recipients

The Battle of Mons was the first major action of the British Expeditionary Force in the First World War.

* Denotes awarded posthumously

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First Battle of the Aisne VCs

On September 14, Sir John French ordered the entire BEF to entrench, the troops merely dug shallow pits in the soil. These were at first intended only to afford cover against enemy observation and shell fire. Soon the trenches were deepened to about seven feet. With the Germans doing the same.Trench warfare begins.

*Denotes VC awarded posthumously.

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First Battle of Ypres VCs

The Battle was significant as it witnessed the destruction of the highly experienced and trained British regular army. Having suffered enormous losses for its small size, the “The Old Contemptibles” disappeared to be replaced by fresh reserves which eventually turned into a mass conscripted Army.

The result was a victory for the Allies, although losses were particularly heavy on both sides. The Germans called the battle "The Massacre of the Innocents of Ypres" (in German Kindermord bei Ypern) as most of the German casualties were a mixture of young inexperienced and highly trained reserves.*Denotes VC awarded posthumously.

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Néry VC Recipients

On the morning of the 1st September a German Cavalry Division attacked 1st Cavalry Brigade and L Battery,all but one gun, had been destroyed. The 13-pounder gun manned by Captain Bradbury, WO2 Dorrell, Sergeant Nelson, and Gunners Osbourne and Darbyshire, managed to keep the single gun in action against the three German Batteries located a thousand yards away. The Artillery fire put down by this gun allowed the 1st Cavalry Brigade to deliver a successful Counter attack.* Denotes awarded posthumously

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Battle of Neuve Chapelle VC recipients

The British Indian Army saw a significant amount of combat around Neuve-Chapelle..* Denotes awarded posthumously

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First day on the Somme VCs

The first day on the Somme, 1 July 1916, was the opening day of the Battle of Albert, which was the first phase of the British and French offensive that became known as the Battle of the Somme. It is remembered as the bloodiest day in the history of the British Army when 57,470 men became casualties. Nine VCs were awarded.* Denotes awarded posthumously.

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