|Colonel William Pollexfen Radcliffe, CB 1st Battalion, 20th Regiment of Foot (1822-1897)
Radcliffe was born at Warleigh, near Plymouth, on 22 December, 1822 being the 3rd son of the Rev. Walter
Radcliffe and the former Abby Emma Franco and recieved his education at Winchester.
Ensign (by purchase) – 12 March, 1841
Lieutenant (by purchase) – 2 August, 1842
Captain (by purchase) – 25 July, 1851
Brevet Major – 12 December, 1854
Major - 29 August, 1856
Lieut. Colonel – 26 March, 1858
Brevet Colonel – 12 March, 1863
Half Pay - 12 June, 1863
Major General – 21 November, 1876 (antedated to 28 October, 1868)
Lieut. General – 9 March, 1882
General and retires - 1 April, 1887
Radcliffe was with his regiment in Bermuda from 1841 to 1847 and spent five years in Canada (1847-1853). He
served in the Crimean War with the 20th Foot and was present Alma, Inkerman, Balaklava, the siege of Sebastopol.
He was with the 20th during the Indian Mutiny at Chanda, Umeerpore and Sultanpore and the siege and capture of
Lucknow where he was wounded by a sabre cut to his right hand. During the Mutiny he was also twice Mentioned in
Despatches. During Siege of Lucknow Radcliffe leading two companies against a walled enclosure known as the
"Engine House" became separated from the main body but none the less forced an entrance with two other men -
Privates Hill and Lincoln. Colonel Evelegh, CB writing of the attack on the Engine House in 1888 said the following:
" I did not see the affair myself. Lys was in command of the regiment - I of the brigade. I believe it was one of the, if
not the, most creditable for the regiment of all the numerous affairs that took place during the mutiny.
Radcliffe ought to have the V.C. for it."
Radcliffe and Private Lincoln were severely wounded and Private Hill killed.
Radcliffe was appointed Inspector-General of Musketry at Hythe on 1 January, 1873 and held the post until 30
April, 1878. He commanded the Eastern Division (Colchester) from 1 October, 1878 resigning on 31 March, 1882.
He was create a Companion of the Bath on 13 March 1867 and a NKnight Commander of the Bath on 29 May, 1886.
He married Isabel Elise de Balquiere on 1 September, 1870. Their son was General Sir Percy Pollexfen de
General William Pollexfen Radcliffe, KCB died at his home, Mortimer, Berks on 23 march, 1897.
Carte de Visite
Jabez Hughs - Photographer
Ryde, Isle of Wight, England