John J Sims VC: From Bloomsbury to Sevastopol

In the hundred years between the Battle of Waterloo and the start of the Great War, Britain fought in just one European conflict - the Crimean War of 1854-56. Towards the end of the war Queen Victoria signed the Royal Warrant instigating the award of the Victoria Cross, made retrospective to the start of the campaign. A VC medal bears the proclamation 'For Valour', and, on Waterloo Day 1855, John Joseph Sims of the 34th Cumberland Regiment displayed his gallantry during the first assault on the Great Redan. At the inaugural investiture of the award in Hyde Park, he was one of the youngest to have a VC pinned on his chest by the Queen. This is the story of the boy from Bloomsbury who joined the 34th and went to war. The author is an engineer living in Surrey.