The Reverend V. D. Siddons
Picture of The Reverend V. D. Siddons

V. D. Siddons - a short history

V.D.Siddons joined the Northamptonshire Yeomanry (Territorials) three years before the outbreak of the 1st World War.  During this time he was training to be a Minister in the Methodist Church.

With the outbreak of war he went with the 8th Division qualifying for the 1914 Star with Aug- Nov clasp.  He came home to take a commission and after nine months in France was then sent to the Middle East to the 1/4th Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment.
He then transferred to the Royal Flying Corps and soon qualified as a pilot.  He spent some time on the Sinai Front, where he took the first photo's of Gaza from the air.

He was then sent down to join "C" Flight of 14 Sqn RFC in the Hejaz where they and a few British troops were co-operating with the Arabs.  He was stationed in the Hejaz for two years, the last six months of which he commanded the RAF (as it had become) detachment in that area.  For his work he was awarded the DFC and was Mentioned in Despatches and also awarded the Order of Al Nahda by the King of the Hejaz.

Medal group of The Reverend V. D. Siddons

In his diary for 1916 and his Army Book 136 (Log Book) reference is made to him acting as a pilot for Lawrence of Arabia, this is also referred to in Lawrence's book The Seven Pillars of Wisdom.

After the war he completed his training for the Ministry and served in various Methodist circuits until the outbreak of the 2nd World War. (See copy of note in research file signed by Salmond thanking him) In February 1939 he was given a commission in the Regular Army Reserve of Officers as a Chaplain and was called up in December 1939.  The next month saw him in France with the 1st Battalion The Duke of Wellington's Regiment.  He was eventually evacuated from Dunkirk.

After a year in England he went again to the Middle East and in Egypt he was posted to the 8th Army as Senior Chaplain to the 13th Corps.  He later became Staff Chaplain at 8th Army headquarters.  When the British troops left North Africa he went with them to Greece as Deputy- Assistant Chaplain General.  He was in Athens when the Communist troubles broke out in December 1944.  For his services in this area he was awarded a Mention in Despatches and was awarded an MBE (Military).

After the war he became Superintendent of the Bath Road Circuit and President of the Swindon Council of Churches.



Awards and decorations.