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Lord Chelmsford Said .Buller is ‘one of the finest soldiers of the century’, so modest and reticent –that it was difficult to say for what individual deed he had got the Victoria Cross as he had been doing acts worthy of it all along the line
 
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Rorke's Drift A Soldier's Story with presenter Major John Thomas
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SirDCC

SirDCC

Posts : 96
Join date : 2010-03-28
Location : England

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PostSubject: Spike Milligan   Spike Milligan EmptyMon Mar 29, 2010 1:20 pm

I remember seeing a antique show some time ago that had as a guest the comedian Spike Milligan. He said that his father (possibly grandfather I'm not sure) had been at the battle of isandlwana as a young drummer boy & on seeing the Zulu appear on a ridge had "buggered off".
He brought along a Zulu shield & knobkerry that his father had brought back from the war ...

Is this true? Was he at the battle? scratch
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JohnB



Posts : 95
Join date : 2010-01-10
Age : 68
Location : Taunton

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PostSubject: Re: Spike Milligan   Spike Milligan EmptyMon Mar 29, 2010 8:56 pm

I have heard a similar story - however Spike's father was Captain Leo Milligan who served in the British Indian Army and was born in 1890. In view of the military connections in the family it could well have been Spike's grandfather, perhaps even on his mothers side.

John B
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littlehand

littlehand

Posts : 7086
Join date : 2009-04-24
Age : 51
Location : Down South.

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PostSubject: Re: Spike Milligan   Spike Milligan EmptyMon Mar 29, 2010 9:20 pm

BRITISH army service records of Chelsea Pensioners, including Spike Milligan's grandfather, will be made available online for the first time today.

Personal details of soldiers who were discharged between 1883 and 1900 will be released, including where they served and a physical description.

They include William Milligan, who joined the army in 1869 in Belfast at the age of 18.

The record shows that he was 5ft 9in and weighed 126lb, and lists a "slight varicose back of left leg" as a distinctive mark.

He served in the UK, Malta and Barbados, and had five children with wife Elizabeth before he was discharged on 25 April, 1896.
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littlehand

littlehand

Posts : 7086
Join date : 2009-04-24
Age : 51
Location : Down South.

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PostSubject: Re: Spike Milligan   Spike Milligan EmptyMon Mar 29, 2010 9:23 pm

"The man in question is Sergeant William Milligan RA, Spike Milligan's great-grandfather. The account is from Spike Milligan's book "It ends with Magic...", published by Penguin in 1990 by Michael Joseph, and in 1991 by Penguin (ISBN 0-14-013912-5). In the introductory Author's Note he gives his source as a handwritten document in the possession of Bert Milligan, in New Zealand at the time the book was written. Bert is a great-grandnephew of William Milligan. He would not allow the document to be photocopied, as it was very fragile. Spike Milligan had already copied it in 1960, presumably by hand.

Spike admits to adding his "own touches of drama to the story" which is on pages 56-60. How far these touches went is not clear but he repeats the story of the "heavy three-inch War Department screws" holding down the lids of the ammunition boxes, together with a lack of screwdrivers.!"

Source: rdvc
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SirDCC

SirDCC

Posts : 96
Join date : 2010-03-28
Location : England

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PostSubject: Re: Spike Milligan   Spike Milligan EmptyMon Mar 29, 2010 10:01 pm

All I could find was something much like you about Chelsea Pensioners and that His Great Grandfather joined the Royal Artillery on September 2, 1869.
The trouble with someone like Spike Milligan is you never know when he's joking & when he's not.
This is just something that stuck in my head and was hoping to find out for sure one way or the other ...
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