- The Yorkshire Regiment, First World War
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For most conspicuous bravery at Horseshoe Trench on 5th July I916. During an attack a very heavy enfilade fire was opened on the attacking company by an hostile machine gun. Second Lieutenant Bell immediately, and on his own initiative, crept up a communication trench and then, followed by Corporal Colwill and Private Batey, rushed across the open under very heavy fire and attacked the machine gun, shooting the firer with his revolver and destroying gun and personnel with bombs.
(2nd Lieut. Bell, who played for Bradford Park Avenue, was the only English professional footballer to win the VC.)
Donald Simpson Bell was the youngest son of Smith and Annie Bell (nee
Simpson) of Milton Lodge, 87 East Parade, Harrogate, Yorkshire and was
born on 3rd December 1890. He had one elder brother, William -
who served in the Army Service Corps in the Great War - and six sisters,
one of whom died in infancy. He was educated at St. Peter's C of
E School, and Harrogate Grammar School, from where he went to Westminster
College in London in 1909 to train as a teacher. There, he was
captain of the athletics team, and also won his colours for cricket, rugby,
hockey, swimming and football.