Veteran volunteers from the Victoria Cross Trust attended the grave side of George Wyatt VC in Cadeby Doncaster to examine and tend to his memorial. Two years ago the VCT stabilised the headstone which had started to sink and ran the potential for toppling over. This year the grassed area was seriously depleted and so through work with the South Yorkshire Police and Doncaster Royal Engineers Association this has now been rectified in preparation for a re- dedication ceremony on 11th November. All made possible through support and funding received as part of the Maintaining the Memories project from the Armed Forces Covenant Fund.
The charity relies on its volunteers and veterans providing excellent opportunities to support projects such as this either through giving their time or through donations such as that provided by the Doncaster Royal Engineers and military veterans serving with South Yorkshire Police working with the VCT.
George Harry Wyatt VC was Police Constable 14 in Doncaster Borough and also served in Barnsley Police. His earlier years were spent as a stablehand at Hindlip Hall now the headquarters of West Mercia Constabulary reinforcing the close links historically with the police service.
On his return from the war to Barnsley he found that his post was not available and made the journey Doncaster reportedly in uniform wearing his VC where he most certainly immediately became PC 14 Wyatt VC. During his time at Doncaster he was also recognised for saving the public from a runaway horse for which he was invited to the Mansion House for dinner and recognised in the Watch Committee minutes. He retired in 1939 and passed away on 22 January 1964.
The VCT first repaired the grave in 2019 and have tended to it since that time. South Yorkshire Police military veterans have maintained a high level of support in keeping an eye on George's grave and those of other military personnel buried in the county. This links the VCT and SYP with the Armed Forces Covenant Trust.
Maintenance included replacing grass that deteriorated along with a clean and polish of the headstone. A rededication ceremony was then held at 11am on 11th November 2021.
This was attended by family a member, offficers from South Yorkshire Police the present day 'Constabulary' in which George Wyatt VC served and the VCT. Led by Pc Hollie Stenton the SYP team has supported the VCT in this project and others around the county. As a former SYP senior officer and now chair of the VCT Keith Lumley said 'it was an honour to be associated with George Wyatt VC and the team from South Yorkshire Police'. Reverend Amanda Barraclough read a short passage and led prayers before the 11th hour of the 11th month arrived. This was followed by'
They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old,
Age shall not weary them nor the years condemn,
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We WILL remember them.
The gazette relating to George Wyatt VC's action was read out and finally a wreath laid by Pc Stenton.
Gazette provided with permission by: Brazier, Kevin. The Complete Victoria Cross : A Full Chronological Record of All Holders of Britain's Highest Award for Gallantry . Pen and Sword. Kindle Edition.