Photo and medal collection of driver who ferried leading figures of Second ...

John Burford, who drove Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery during WW2

John Burford, who drove Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery during WW2

A fascination photo archive of a driver who ferried around some of the leading figures of the Second World War is to go under the hammer with his war medals  for £6,000.

John Burford, of the Royal Army Service Corps, served as the driver for Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, one of the most inspirational military commanders of the Second World War.

Mr Burford was his driver from October 1942 until Germany surrendered in May 1945.

He accompanied him through the legendary Alamein offensive in North Africa, the invasion of Sicily and the Normandy landings, with the pair becoming firm friends.

The collection of photographs of Mr Burford and his medals is being auctioned by London-based auctioneers Bonhams and it is the first time the collection has appeared on the market.

One of the photos shows Burford driving Sir Winston Churchill and receiving his Military Medal from George VI after displaying 'great gallantry' under heavy fire during the battle for Mount Etna in August 1943.

John Burford drove Winston Churchill and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery on a tour of the beaches of Normandy in France following the D-Day landings in 1944

John Burford drove Winston Churchill and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery on a tour of the beaches of Normandy in France following the D-Day landings in 1944

John Burford's medals: From left, Military Medal, awarded for bravery or battle on land, the 1939-1945 War Medal, an operation medal awarded to soldiers; Africa Star, for those serving in North Africa between June 10 1940 and May 12 1943, Italy Star, a campaign medal for those who served  in the Italian Campaign from 1943 to 1945, France and German Star for those serving in France and Germany between June 6 1944 and May 8 1945; War Medal which is awarded to those who served in the army during the Second World War and Efficiency Medal, a long service award

John Burford's medals: From left, Military Medal, awarded for bravery or battle on land, the 1939-1945 War Medal, an operation medal awarded to soldiers; Africa Star, for those serving in North Africa between June 10 1940 and May 12 1943, Star, a campaign medal for those who served  in the Italian Campaign from 1943 to 1945, France and German Star for those serving in France and Germany between June 6 1944 and May 8 1945; War Medal which is awarded to those who served in the army during the Second World War and Efficiency Medal, a long service award

Montgomery's love for his driver was so great that he presented Burford with a framed photo of himself accompanied by a heart-felt hand written dedication

It read: 'To Driver Burford M.M. who has marched with me from Alamein, across Africa to Tunisia, over to Sicily, halfway up , and from Normandy to the Baltic, and who never failed to do his duty.

'With my best wishes. Montgomery of Alamein Field. Marshal.'

Burford received a Military Medal for driving officers on dangerous missions while being fired at by the enemy during the fighting around Mount Etna from August 1 to 6, 1943, during the Allied invasion of Sicily.

His citation in the London Gazette, dated December 23, 1943, read: 'Driver

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