b. 13/06/1890 King's Norton, Worcestershire. d. 21/12/1980 Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
DATE OF GC ACTION: 27/07/1917 Mory, France.
Frederick Leonard Houghton (1890-1980) was born on 13th June 1890 in King’s Norton, Worcestershire, the son of Frederick Sidney Houghton and Claire Elizabeth (nee Brierley), and the family lived at 188, Hagley Road, Bimingham. At the time of Frederick’s birth, his father was a schoolmaster. Frederick was educated at Malvern College where he was a minor scholar, in House 8 from 1904-1908. After finishing his education, Frederick trained as a Chartered Accountant.
On the outbreak of World War I, Frederick enlisted as a Private in the 21st (Public Schools) Battalion, Royal Fusiliers with the service number 2811. Frederick was soon commissioned into the Royal Warwickshire Regiment on 18th May 1915 and reported to Parkhurst, Isle of Wight. He then rose to the rank of Liieutenant (Temporary Captain) of the 3rd Battalion as a Brigade Bombing Officer.
On the 27th July 1917 during bombing instruction at Mory, France, a bomb hit the parapet and fell back into the trench which was occupied by Lieutenant Houghton, a non-commissioned officer and the man who had thrown the bomb. The non-commissioned officer shouted to the man to seek cover, which he could easily have done, but the man remained crouching near the bomb. Lieutenant Houghton had already placed himself in safety ; but on hearing the shouts of the non-commissioned officer, he ran back into the trench, seized the bomb, and threw it over the parapet, where it at once exploded. If Lieutenant Houghton had not returned from safety into danger, the man would almost certainly have been killed.
Houghton was gazetted for the Albert Medal on 1st January 1918. On the same day, in the New Years Honours List, he was awarded the Military Cross. He ended the war serving in the Italian Theatre. After the war, he became a partner in Charlton and Long, Accountants in Birmingham and was mentioned many times in the London Gazette as a Liquidator of Companies at Winchester House, Victoria Square. In 1922 he married Katherine Gladstone in Edgebaston, Birmingham, and they went on to have a son, Frederick.
In 1971, following a change in the Royal Warrant, the opportunity was provided for all living recipients of the Albert or Edward Medals to exchange their medals for a George Cross. At this time, Frederick Houghton made no application to exchange and was seemingly unaware of the opportunity. He has been recently “discovered” as a newly recognised George Cross holder. Frederick passed away on 21st December 1980, aged 90, at his home, Alexander Lodge, Saunderton, Princes Riseborough, near Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire. It is unknown where his last resting place is at this time. His medals including his AM, MC, and WWI Campaign medals are also in an unknown location.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: UNKNOWN.
BURIAL LOCATION: UNKNOWN.
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