‘Crossy’ VC

Famously worn by David Niven in the film Carrington VC, it was probably the most widely viewed Victoria Cross in the history of the award. Steve Snelling charts the story of the real-life hero.


Harry Cross VC, MM, presents the Victoria Cross from his own medal group to David Niven for his leading role in Carrington VC, being shot at the London Film Studio, Shepperton, in the summer of 1954.
Harry Cross displaying the ribbons of the Victoria Cross and the Military Medal which he earned in the space of two months. According to his own record, he was awarded the MM for an action at Bullecourt on 18 May 1918.

On a summer’s day in 1954 a tall, elderly man with snow-white hair left his tiny tenement flat and travelled across London to a newspaper office in the heart of the capital. Harry Cross, ‘Crossy’ to his pals, was on a mission. The one-time docker and railway worker turned city messenger took with him a battered old suitcase containing his proudest possession - one that would earn him a brief place in the celebrity limelight alongside one of the biggest screen stars of the day. Marching into the newsroom, he clicked open the case and declared: “If David Niven would like to borrow this he can.”

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