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  • The War Illustrated 1915
Person Details
09 Oct 1872
Belgravia, London
He was the son of Sir Peniston, 9th Baronet, and Elizabeth Margaret Milbanke On 1881 Census he is listing with his parents and brother Mark Richard at Eartham House, Eartham, Chichester. His father is listed as Baronet and farmer He was educated at Castlemount, Dover In 1886 he began attendance at Harrow School, where he became a close friend of Winston Churchill. On 1891 Census he is listing with his parents and brother Mark Richard at Eartham House, Eartham, Chichester. His father is listed as living on own means and John as a sub lieutenant in the Royal Sussex Militia. He succeeded his father in November 1899 Missed 1901 Census as in South Africa On 6th December 1901, at St Peter's, Eaton Square, Sir John Milbanke married Amelia Madeline Louisa, only daughter of Colonel the Honourable Charles Crichton (son of the 3rd Earl of Erne) and of Lady Madeline Taylour (daughter of the 3rd Marquis of Headfort). Their children were John Charles Peniston, born 9th January 1902, and Ralph Mark, born 11th April, 1907. On 1911 Census he is living with his widowed mother and brother Mark Richard at 44 St Georges Road, London. He is listed as formerly Major 10th Hussars.
On 1911 Census he is listed as formerly Major 10th Hussars
21 Aug 1915
688612 - CWGC Website
On original enlistment he lived at Eartham House, Eartham, Chichester. On 1911 Census he lived at 44 St Georges Road, London. His widow lived at 19, Manchester Square, London
Lieutenant Colonel
  • VC VC Victoria Cross
Nottinghamshire Yeomanry (Sherwood Rangers)
Appointed Second Lieutenant in 3rd Battalion Royal Sussex Regiment 22nd February 1890 (London Gazette 21st February 1890) Transferred to 10th Hussars as Second Lieutenant on 23rd November 1892 (London Gazette 22nd November 1892) Promoted to Lieutenant on 18th April 1894 (London Gazette 1st May 1894) As part of Queen Victoria Jubilee celebrations in 1897, was part of a Review of the Regular and Colonial Troops at Aldershot on 1st July 1897 acting as Aide de Camp to Lieutenant Colonel J D P French commanding 1st Brigade of the Cavalry Division (London Gazette 14th March 1898) Seconded for service on the Staff 19th January 1899 (London Gazette 21st February 1899) Appointed Aide de Camp for Lieutenant Colonel J D P French, Cavalry Division, Aldershot 19th January 1899 (London Gazette 21st February 1899) Listed as Aide de Camp for Lieutenant Colonel J D P French when the Cavalry Division was mobilised for service in South Africa 9th October 1899 (London Gazette 13th October 1899) Promoted Captain on 17th April 1900 (London Gazette 1st May 1900) Awarded Victoria Cross for action on 5th January 1900 (London Gazette 6th July 1900 and Edinburgh Gazette 10th July 1900) Promoted to Major 17th May 1904 (London Gazette 18th October 1904) Retired from the Army 14th January 1911 (London Gazette 13th January 1911) Rejoined Reserve of Officers in August 1914 On 31st October 1914, he was appointed Lieutenant Colonel of the Nottinghamshire Yeomanry (Sherwood Foresters) in lieu of Lieutenant Colonel Albert E Walker who was seconded. (London Gazette 30th October 1914) Lands in Egypt 17th April 1915 Landed Suvla Bay during night (17th/18th August 1915). Moved to Lala Baba (20th August 1915) Forward position at Chocolate Hill (21st August 1915). Killed in Action Battle of Scimitar Hill 21st August 1915 Mentioned in Sir Ian Hamilton’s dispatch of 11th December 1915 (London Gazette 28th January 1916)
Victoria Cross Citation On the 5th January, 1900, during a reconnaissance near Colesberg, Sir John Milbanke, when retiring under fire with a small patrol of the 10th Hussars, notwithstanding the fact that he had just been severely wounded in the thigh, rode back to the assistance of one of the men whose pony was exhausted, and who was under fire from some Boers who had dismounted. Sir John Milbanke took the man up on his own horse under a most galling fire and brought him safely back to camp’ The following account is taken from part of an article by Mr Ashmead Bartlett in the 'Globe' of 4th September 1915: "The Yeomanry moved forward in a solid mass, forming up under the lower western and northern slopes. It was now almost dark and the attack seemed to hang fire, when suddenly the Yeomanry leapt to their feet, and as a single man charged right up the hill. They were met by a withering fire, which rose to a crescendo as they neared the northern crest, but nothing could stop them. They charged at amazing speed without a single halt from the bottom to the top, losing many men and many of their chosen leaders, including gallant Sir John Milbanke. It was a stirring sight, watched by thousands in the ever-gathering gloom. One moment they were below the crest, the next on top. A moment after many had disappeared inside the Turkish trenches, bayoneting all the defenders who had not fled in time, while others never stopped at trench-line, but dashed in pursuit down the reverse slopes. From a thousand lips a shout went up that Hill 70 was won. But night now was rapidly falling; the figures became blurred, then lost all shape, and finally disappeared from view. The battlefield had disappeared completely, and as one left Chocolate Hill one looked back on a vista of rolling clouds of smoke and huge fires, from the midst of which the incessant roar of the rifle-fire never for a moment ceased. This was ominous, for although Hill 70 was in our hands, the question arose could we hold it throughout the night in the face of determined counter-attacks? In fact, all through the night the battle raged incessantly, and when morning broke Hill 70 was no longer in our possession. Apparently the Turks were never driven off a knoll on the northern crest, from which they enfiladed us with machine guns and artillery fire, while those of the Yeomanry who had dashed down the reverse slopes in pursuit were counter-attacked and lost heavily and had been obliged to retire. In the night it was decided it would be impossible to hold the hill in daylight, and the order was given for the troops to withdraw to their original positions. Nothing, however, will lessen the glory of that final charge of England's Yeomen". Before the attack, he apparently said to one of his officers ‘We are to take a redoubt but I don’t know where it is, and I don’t think anyone else does either; but in any case, we are to go ahead and attack any Turks we meet’
Remembered on


  • The War Illustrated 1915
    Sir John Peniston Milbanke - The War Illustrated 1915
  • 1900
    Sir John Peniston Milbanke - 1900
  • St Margaret's Church, Eartham, Sussex -
  • St Peter's Church, Eaton Square, London -
  • Helles Memorial -
  • Helles Memorial Detail -