. ....At a meeting of the Brecon Town Council, on Tuesday, the Mayor referred to a brave soldier now in that town, who had received the Victoria Cross. He was a corporal when at Rorke's Drift but was now a sergeant, and had married a Breconshire lady. It had occurred to several townsmen that the proper and fitting thing to do was to give Brecon an opportunity of showing its high appreciation of his gallant conduct. Through him and another it was that communication was kept up with the hospital, and by their determined conduct it was that the patients were withdrawn from the hospital in safety. Sergeant William Allan was now on furlough. Mr Morgan moved, and Mr Rich seconded, "That the sugge tion be entertained."—Mr Williams said he would be glad to contribute.—Mr Rich said he would rather it was done by the board as representing the town.—Mr Overton said that such matters should not be considered by the board.—The Mayor upheld the right of the chair to bring such points under notice.—Mr Overton requested the Mayor to place it on the agenda, and the Mayor refused, Mr Overton stating that he had never seen such a course pursued. A list was immediately prepared and passed round, with a very satisfactory result. Sergeant William Allan belongs to the 2nd battalion 24th Regiment. The testimonial will probably take the form of a silver watch and chain. The Cardiff Times, Saturday 17th January 1880 .
Death of a Rorke's Drift Hero.
. ....We regret to have to record the death of Sergt.-Inst. W. W. Allan, V.C., which took place at Monmouth on Wednesday morning, after a. painful illness of about six weeks. At the beginning of last month he had a severe attack of influenza from which he had partially recovered, when a complication of diseases set in resulting ultimately in his death. The deceased served about 25 years in the 2nd-24th Regiment, and was appointed instructor to C company 4th V. B. S.W.B. in September, 1887, which position he held till his death. In the performance of his military duties he was exact in every particular, yet courteous to all, and a general favourite in the corps, which loses in him one of its most efficient instructors. Sergt.-Inst. Allan joined the gallant 24th at an early age, and served with that regiment in India for thirteen years. He embarked for the Cape with his regiment on the 2nd February, 1878, and took part in the Kaffir War against the chiefs Sandilli, Kreli, and other minor chiefs, during the progress of which the 2nd-24th so frequently distinguished themselves. The Zulu War followed, and the "fighting 24th," forming part of Lord Chelmsford's column, were encamped on the Buffalo river at Rorke's Drift. The column moved forward on the 20th January, 1879, leaving B Company, numbering about 100 all ranks, under Lieutenants Chard and Bromhead, to hold the position, Sergeant Allan being one of these. He was awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery on that occasion. The Zulus, flushed with their success at Isandhlwana, advanced on Rorke's Drift many thousands strong, and for twelve hours were kept at bay, and ultimately had to retire before the gallant little band of defenders. That defence is perhaps without parallel in the annals of British warfare, and the cool, intrepid, manly pluck of every officer and soldier present is deserving of the highest praise. But even amongst these Sergeant-Instructor Allan distinguished himself, and his bravery and devotion to duty is thus described in an official account of this action:— ...."The enemy set fire to the hospital. The garrison defended it step by step. They brought out as many of the sick as possible. Corporal W. Allan and Private Hitch held a most dangerous post commanding the communication between the hospital and the inner defence, exposed to fire from both sides; they were severely wounded, yet when their injuries rendered them incapable of handling arms, they had their wounds dressed by the surgeon and returned to the defence, and carried cartridges to their comrades, still being exposed to the fire of the enemy." ....The Victoria Cross was, we believe, awarded to all those named in this report who survived the campaign. Deceased leaves a widow and seven children—the oldest of whom is only 13, and the youngest a few months old—totally unprovided for. South Wales Echo, Thursday 13th March 1890
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