The Tank Museum | Recipient

Sir Hugh Jamieson Elles

ELLES, General Sir Hugh Jamieson KCB, KCMG, KCVO, DSO

Hugh Elles was born on 27th April 1880 (youngest son of Sir Edmond Roche Elles) and was commissioned in to the Royal Engineers in 1899. He saw service in South Africa and in 1914, at the outbreak of World War 1, went to France where he held various staff appointments. In 1916 he was appointed Colonel Commanding the Heavy Branch of the Machine Gun Corps, which in 1917, became the newly formed Tank Corps. At the Battle of Cambrai, on the 20th November 1917, he led his men into action in a tank called "Hilda", flying the new Tank Corps flag. A commander leading his men into action was unique during World War 1. The brown, red and green flag, made from material sewn by his wife, can be seen in the museum. He was wounded and "mentioned in despatches" eight times. He led the Tank Corps through many trials and tribulations, until it became firmly established as part of the Army

In 1919 he was appointed to command the Royal Tank Corps Centre and became Inspector of the Royal Tank Corps in 1923. He became Colonel Commandant of the Royal Tank Corps in 1934 and Colonel Commandant of the Royal Engineers in 1935. He was promoted Major-General in 1928 and Lieut-General in 1934. During World War 2 he worked in Civil Defence and died in 1945.

KNIGHT COMMANDER OF THE MOST DISTINGUISHED ORDER OF ST. MICHAEL & ST. GEORGE

KNIGHT COMMANDER OF THE MOST HONOURABLE ORDER OF THE BATH - MILITARY DIVISION

KNIGHT COMMANDER OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER

DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER

1914 STAR WITH BAR (MONS STAR)

BRITISH WAR MEDAL 1914-18 (SILVER)

QUEEN'S SOUTH AFRICA MEDAL (SILVER)

VICTORY MEDAL

KING GEORGE V CORONATION 1911 (SILVER)

KING GEORGE VI CORONATION 1937

KING GEORGE V JUBILEE 1935

CROIX DE GUERRE (BELGIUM)

CROIX DE GUERRE (FRANCE)

CROIX DE GUERRE WITH PALMS

LEGION D'HONNEUR

LEGION OF HONOUR, THIRD REPUBLIC, THIRD CLASS; FRANCE

ORDER OF THE CROWN, FOURTH CLASS; BELGIUM

ORDER OF THE CROWN, THIRD CLASS; BELGIUM

ORDER OF THE RISING SUN, SECOND CLASS; JAPAN

MEDAL RIBBON GROUP

MINIATURE MEDAL GROUP