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Loaned painting features VC hero Henry Tandey
2:21pm Tuesday 17th September 2013 in News
A STIRRING recreation of a First World War scene, including a real-life VC hero in action, has found a temporary new home.
The Menin Crossroads, by the Italian artist Fortunino Matania, depicts the late afternoon of October 22, 1914, when there was a moment of brief respite for the beleaguered men of the Green Howards.
The painting was commissioned in 1925 and it is likely that Matania was chosen because he was famous for his overwhelming desire for accuracy. He would visit wounded men taking with him a box of toy soldiers so that they could re-enact a scene for him.
Many of the officers and soldiers in the painting are named, including Private Henry Tandey who carries a wounded soldier in the foreground of the picture.
In a short spell of five weeks in 1918, Pte Tandey was awarded the three highest awards for gallantry in the face of the enemy, becoming the most highly decorated private soldier in the Great War.
By November 1918 he had been awarded the Victoria Cross, the Distinguished Conduct Medal, the Military Medal and had been mentioned in despatches five times.
Kiplin Hall curator Dawn Webster said: “This is a very fine and atmospheric painting that fits in perfectly with our current exhibition, Duty Calls.”
Duty Calls: Kiplin Hall in Times of War recounts 300-years of Kiplin’s owners, family members and local communities in times of war.
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