THE VICTORIA CROSS AND WWI TRIO OF CAMPAIGN MEDALS AWARDED TO PRIVATE ROBERT BEATHAM, 8TH BN, AUSTRALIAN IMPERIAL FORCE, HAVE BEEN SOLD AT AUCTION BY SPINK OF AUSTRALIA.
27 March 1999


( select to enlarge )
Medal entitlement of Private Robert Beatham,
8th Bn, Australian Imperial Force

  • Victoria Cross
  • ( 1914-15 Star )
  • ( British War Medal ( 1914-20 ) )
  • ( Victory Medal ( 1914-19 ) )


The Victoria Cross awarded to Private Robert Beatham, 8th Bn, Australian Imperial Force, has been sold at auction by Spink of Melbourne, Australia. The sale hammer price realised AUS$178,000 and was purchased by an anonymous buyer. The Robert Beatham VC is currently on loan and on display in the Queensland Museum, Brisbane.

( The Robert Beatham Victoria Cross had previously been sold through John Hayward's "The Gazette" in April 1967 for £700 )


For the award of the Victoria Cross

[ London Gazette, 14 December 1918 ], Rosiere, France, 9 August 1918, Private Robert Matthew Beatham, 8th Bn, Australian Imperial Force.

For most conspicuous bravery and self-sacrifice during the attack north of Rosieres, east of Amiens, on 9th August 1918.

When the advance was held up by heavy machine-gun fire, Private Beatham dashed forward, and, assisted by one man, bombed and fought the crews of four enemy machine guns, killing ten of them and capturing ten others, thus facilitating the advance and saving many casualties.

When the final objective was reached, although previously wounded, he again dashed forward and bombed a machine gun, being riddled with bullets and killed in doing so.

The valour displayed by this gallant soldier inspired all ranks in a wonderful manner.

Robert Beatham's mother was invested with his Victoria Cross by King George V at Buckingham Palace on the 8th March 1919.


Robert Beatham was killed during his VC action and was buried in the Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, France.

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Iain Stewart, 28 March 1999