Ajax Veterans Street Dedication: Weld Drive
- Media Type:
- Street Name: Weld Drive
Name of Veteran: James Joseph Weld May 17, 1899-Nov. 21, 1957
Rank: Commanding Officer
Ship Served: HMS Ajax
Date of Service on Ship: Sept. 14, 1942-Sept. 8, 1944
Year of Visit/Dedication: n/a
Veteran or Family Visit: n/a
Veteran of the Battle of the River Plate: No
Died at Battle: No
James Joseph Weld was born May 17, 1899 to Joseph Edward Weld and Frances Gertrude “Fanny” Brown in Mitcham, Surrey. He joined the Royal Navy in May of 1912 at the age of thirteen and went on to serve in World War One. In only five years he managed to move up in rank from Midshipman to Lieutenant.
James married Kathleen Mary Eleanor Davison Bland on May 17, 1924, the daughter of Colonel Frederick Millbanke Davison Bland. Together they had three children; Anthony (b.1925), Michael (b.1927), and Averil (b.1929).
James was honoured to be a part of the Gun Carriage crew for the funeral of King George V held on January 28, 1936. His coffin was carried on top of a Gun Carriage and only a privileged few were charged with carrying it. The King was a Vice Admiral in the Royal Navy so thousands of Officers and ratings were in procession.
Throughout Commander Weld’s long career with the Royal Navy he received many awards and decorations. In 1935 he was given the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal while serving the ship Victoria Albert.
In 1941 Weld was awarded the M.V.O. (Member of the Victorian Order) which is one of the five classes of the Royal Victorian Order. This Order was founded in 1896 by Queen Victoria to give recognition to those who have rendered outstanding service to the Sovereign or to the Royal Family.
By the time Weld joined HMS Ajax in 1942 he was a well-seasoned Commanding Officer. The ship was involved in Operation Neptune in Normandy and James was Mentioned in Despatches for his role.
Commander James Joseph Weld retired on October 11, 1950 after thirty eight years of service. He died on November 21, 1957 in London, England on the way to St. Mary Abbots Hospital.
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- Location of Original:
- Original document and image located in the Ajax Archives.
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