George de Cardonnel Elmsall Findlay VC

George de Cardonnel Elmsall Findlay VC

Colonel George de Cardonnel Elmsall Findlay, VC, MC & Bar, DL, Royal Engineers, born on 20 August 1889 at Balloch, Dunbartonshire, was the third son of Major Robert Elmsall Findlay, a JP, and Director of Findlay, Richardson & Co. Ltd., East India Merchants, of 34 West George Street, Glasgow, and Jane Cecilia Louise Scott Findlay, of Boturich Castle near Balloch.

He was educated at St Ninian's Preparatory School at Moffat, Harrow and the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich.

He was commissioned into the Royal Engineers in January 1910. All four of the Findlay’s sons served in the Great War.

In June 1917 he was a Captain in the 409th (Lowland) Field Company, Royal Engineers, Territorial Force. His actions at the Battle of Passchendale saw him awarded the Military Cross and bar for gallantry.

He was awarded the Victoria Cross for conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty for action. On 4th November 1918 Acting Major Findlay was leading bridging and assaulting parties during the forcing of the Sambre-Oise Canal Lock near Catillon in France. The advance came under heavy fire and was halted due to the large number of casualties. Despite this he was able gather together a few men and repair the bridges whilst under constant fire. He was wounded but continued with the task until he was able to use the crossing again, being the first man across.

He remained serving in the Army until he retired in 1939. In 1941 he was elected to represent the Cardross and Craigendoran Ward within Dunbartonshire County Council. He served for 23 years in this capacity. In 1957 he was appointed a Deputy Lieutenant of the County. He also served as President of the Helensburgh branch of the British Legion for a number of years.

George died on 26th June 1967 and he is buried at Kilmaronock Churchyard near Gartocharn.


George de Cardonnel Elmsall Findlay VC.