Captain George Talbot Plum


George Talbot Plum was born in Bristol in early 1878, son of cutlery manufacturer George T. Plum and his wife, County Down-born Sarah Jane Plum.

He worked in his father's business at Redland, Bristol, as a cutler. By 1911 it included a sports outfitting department, which Plum managed.

On 29 April 1915 Plum was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant in the 4th (City of Bristol) Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment, part of the South Midland Division.

On 8 March the following year he transferred to the South Midland Division's Cyclist Companies. He was promoted to the rank of lieutenant on 1 July 1917. For significant periods in 1916 and 1917 he acted in the rank of captain.

Plum was transferred to the Army Cyclist Corps on 8 November 1917. From that date until 20 July 1918 he commanded a company of cyclist, with the rank of acting captain.

On 29 August 1918 he embarked for France, where he joined the North Irish Horse Cyclist Regiment, taking command of D Squadron as acting captain. He remained in this role until 15 October, when Captain J.C.G. Kirkpatrick took over.

During the time Plum was in command of D Squadron, the North Irish Horse Cyclists had played an important role as advance guard and scouts for the divisions of V Corps during the Advance to Victory offensive. Plum won plaudits for the work done by his squadron:

I wish to place on record my appreciation of the good work done by the detachment of the North Irish Horse (Corps Cyclists) under Captain Plum, attached to this Brigade during the recent operations especially on the 4th September 1918.

The patrolling done by the Cyclists and the information which they obtained has proved invaluable and largely contributed to the success of the operations.

(Signed) G Gwyn Thomas, Brigadier General
Commanding 50th Infantry Brigade
[6 September]


1. The Squadron of Cyclists (NIH) attached to this Division proved invaluable.
They were employed on the following tasks:-

1. Patrolling
2. Communication
3. Liaison

2. (a) During the advance from Rocquigny to the Canal-du-Nord, sections patrolled ahead of the Infantry and sent back most useful reports as to the position of the enemy. One patrol on arrival at Etricourt dismounted and came into action against an enemy Machine Gun Nest on the East bank of the Canal-du-Nord and compelled it to withdraw.
(b) When all the forward telephone wires were cut and the Power Buzzer out of action, the cyclists riding down the Fins-Gouzeaucourt road maintained communication from the forward Battalions to the Dessart Wood Report Centre.
(c) During the check along the Canal-du-Nord they were used to maintain Liaison with troops on Right and Left, and were most useful.
3. The Cyclists were of the greatest use, their keenness was most marked, and they carried out the tasks allotted to them in a most competent manner.

(Signed) G M Bird, Colonel for
Major General
Commanding 17th Division
[25 September]


After the war Plum was placed on the Territorial Army Officer Reserve General List, and was promoted to captain. He relinquished his commission on 23 May 1928, having reached the age limit for officers.