Paving stone to be laid commemorating former Wandsworth soldier
A paving stone honouring the heroic actions of a former Wandsworth soldier is be laid in the borough as part of First World War commemorations.
The Department for Communities and Local Government is planning to start placing 430 commemorative stones in locations across the country from August 23 next year - the 100th anniversary of the war.
The Victoria Cross is the highest and most prestigious award for bravery that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
Lieutenant Colonel Reginald Leonard Haine, from 1st Battalion, Honourable Artillery Company, was awarded his medal for "gallantry in the face of the enemy".
Lt Col Haine, who was just 20 and a second lieutenant at the time, was stationed near Gavrelle, France, April, 1917, when British troops were repeatedly attacked by German forces.
He organised a successful attack on a German position, and then held it despite a strong counter attack.
He was initially awarded the Military Cross for his actions and later awarded the Victoria Cross.
After the war, Lt Col Haine chose a calmer life and became a chartered accountant before his death in Lambeth, aged 86, on June 12, 1982,
His ashes were interred at Chichester Crematorium.
A nationwide competition to design the paving stones is being held to mark the centenary, and more than 200 entries have been received from schools, design professionals and university students.
A panel of seven judges, including Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft and Victoria Cross recipient Lance Corporal Johnson Beharry, will decide on a shortlist of entries.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles will then make the final decision on the winning design and respective councils will then decide where the paving stones will be laid.
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