A WEE COUNTY man who was awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery in the Great War will be officially recognised with a commemorative service.

John Crawford Buchan was born in Alloa's King Street on October 10, 1892, the third son of David Buchan who was the owner and editor of The Alloa Advertiser at the time.

He became a town clerk, was a writer for his father's business, along with being a keen sportsman and having a talent for languages, and would later volunteer for the army.

However, at the age of 25, he lost his life in the line of duty and was given the Victoria Cross – the highest award for gallantry for British and Commonwealth forces.

In tribute to him, Clackmannanshire Council will hold a civic event at some point in March at The Boer War Memorial, which sits on the junction of Ludgate and Claremont.

A VC stone will also be unveiled and a few words will be said in Lt. Buchan's honour.

A spokesperson for the local authority said: "The VC programme is a national scheme, with events organised around the date they received their VC medal.

"They are organised by the council in consultation with local community council. The guidance for the stone laying is to be near where the recipient either was born or lived most of their life.

"John Crawford Buchan stayed in Kellie Place and the Boer War memorial was picked as nearest appropriate place where people can safely view the commemoration stone."

After basic training, Buchan was assigned to the Royal Army Medical Corps to prepare hospitals to receive casualties.

Two months later, he was commissioned with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, the 7th Battalion of which drew its recruits mainly from the county.

By September 1917, he embarked for France and then, on March 21 of the following year, found himself on the outskirts of the village of Marteville on the Upper Somme.

There, he and his men faced the brunt of the Kaiserschlacht, also known as Operation Michael or the Spring Offensive.

This was a last attempt by the Kaiser to defeat the allies before the Americans arrived.

On May 21, 1918, The London Gazette reported an account of the last hours of a courageous Buchan.

It said: "When fighting with his platoon in the forward position of the battle zone, 2nd Lieutenant Buchan, although wounded earlier in the day, insisted on remaining with his men and continually visited all his posts, encouraging and cheering his men in spite of more severe shell fire from which his platoon was suffering heavy casualties.

"Later, when the enemy were creeping closer and heavy machine gun fire was raking his position, 2nd Lieutenant Buchan, with utter disregard of his personal safety, continued to visit his posts.

"Eventually, when he saw the enemy had practically surrounded his command, he collected his platoon and prepared to fight his way back to the supporting line.

"At this point, the enemy who had crept round his right flank, rushed towards him, shouting out 'surrender'.

"'To hell with surrender' he replied and shooting the foremost of the enemy, he finally repelled this advance with his platoon.

"He then fought his way back to the supporting line of the forward position where he held out until dusk.

"At dusk he fell back as ordered but, in spite of his injuries, again refused to go to the aid post, saying his place was with his men.

"Owing to the unexpected withdrawal of troops on the left flank it was impossible to send orders to 2nd Lieutenant Buchan to withdraw as he was already cut off and he was last seen holding out against overwhelming odds.

"The gallantry and self-sacrifice and utter disregard to personal safety by this officer during these two days of most severe fighting is in keeping with the highest traditions of the British Army."