Military Cross, WW1 British War and Victory Medal Pair, Army L.S. and G.C., VR issue, Quartermaster and Lieutenant Arthur Patrick Lunam, 16th Bn Notts and Derby Regiment, later Royal Air Force.
An unusual and rare grouping with a Victorian Long Service Medal, Lieut Lunam was a soldier since he was only 14, rising through the ranks in a short time, becoming a Sergeant by 20 and Colour Sergeant at 25, he remained in Cardiff, Wales after extensive service with the Welsh Regiment, where he was a mainstay as a Shooting Instructor and head of the Rifle Club, having competed in all the local rifle competitions, his students and competitors could rarely best his almost perfect shooting.
MC unnamed as issued, WW1 impressed: “Q.M. Lieut A. P. Lunam”
Army LSGC engraved: “971 C:Sgt A. P. Lunan Welsh R.”
Awarded the Military Cross, London Gazette 1st January 1918, New Year’s Honours.
Awarded the Long Service Medal in January 1898, Army Orders.
Arthur Patrick Lunam was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland during 1863.
Having been working as a Baker, he attested for service at the young age of 14 at Aldershot with the 41st (Welsh) Regiment.
Having began as an Army “Boy” on 10th November 1877 he became a “Lad” in 61 days at the age of 15, followed by Private in 1880 having turned 17, it only took 226 days to be promoted to Corporal on 24th August 1880, he was an extremely young Sergeant at the age of 20 by 1883, reaching the rank of Colour Sergeant soon afterwards by April 1888 at the young age of 25.
Service at home and abroad for his 30 years of service until 1908:
“Home : 10 Nov 1877 – 28 Dec 1881
Natal: 29 Dec 1881 – 14 May 1885
Mauritius: 15 May 1885 – 26 October 1885
South Africa: 27 Oct 1885 – 8th May 1886
Egypt: 9 May 1886 – 28 August 1889
Malta: 29 Aug 1889 – 6 Aug 1890
Home 7 August 1890 – 31 August 1908.”
On the occasion of his discharge, Wales Evening Express, 14th September 1908:
Sergeant-Major Lunam, late of the 2nd Volunteer Battalion Welsh Regiment, has been presented with a solid silver teapot by the staff sergeants and sergeants of the Cardiff companies of the late Volunteer Battalion of which he was Sergeant-Major. A large number of his comrades assembled at the Drill Hall, and complimentary speeches were made by Colour-Sergeant G. Williams (who made the presentation), Sergeant-Major Broad, Quartermaster-Sergeant Taylor, and Colour-Sergeant Holtham.”
During his time leading up to the award of the Long Service Medal he was the Shooting Instructor for the battalion and head of the Cardiff Rifle Club, as an instructor he would also compete in all the competitions and it was rare anyone could best his marksmanship.
As the First World War began, this veteran of 30 years service had his retirement interrupted, at the age of 52 he swiftly reenlisted on 3rd October 1914 with the 7th Battalion King’s Shropshire Light Infantry.
Cardiff Western Mail, 6th October 1914:
“PROMOTION FOR AN OLD GLAMORGAN VOLUNTEERS
Sergeant Major A.P. Lunam, who served on the permanent staff of the old 2nd Volunteer Battalion Welsh Regiment for many years in Swansea and Bridgen, and during the last five years of his service at Cardiff as Sergeant Major to Colonel J. Gaskell, enlisted in the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry as a Private, and has been promoted Quartermaster-Sergeant and is posted to the 7th Battalion (New Army) of that regiment at Codford, Wiltshire. He has over 30 years service to his credit.”
As a most experienced soldier he was naturally discharged to a commission on 23rd March 1915, joining the 10th battalion Leicestershire Regiment as Lieutenant Quartermaster.
During February 1916 he was transferred to the 16th Battalion Sherwood Foresters and finally embarked for operational service in France at the age of 53.
For his services during this period with the 16th Sherwood Foresters he was awarded the Military Cross in the 1918 New Years Honours.
On 30th January 1918 he was transferred to the 14th Convalescent Camp as Captain (Quartermaster) and Adjutant.
As the RAF was formed on 1st April 1918 he was gazetted into the Royal Air Force as Lieutenant