A gallantry medal given to a First World War hero has broken the world record price for a Victoria Cross by selling for almost £500,000.
The medal was part of a group including a Military Cross awarded to Captain Alfred John Shout which sold for £491,567 at Bonhams & Goodman in Sydney, Australia.
It was one of nine VCs given to Australians who fought at Gallipoli, and was the only one still in private hands, with the remainder at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.
The price - which includes buyers' premium - beat the previous sale record for such a group including a VC, which was £235,250 in 2004.
That honour had been bestowed on legendary Second World War airman, the late Warrant Officer Norman Jackson, who survived after he crawled on to the fuselage of a blazing Lancaster bomber at 20,000ft in a bid to extinguish a fire. The medal was bought by an anonymous Australian, who wants to work with the Returned Servicemen's League (RSL) to see the medals in the Australian War Memorial.
Tim Goodman, chief executive of Bonhams & Goodman, said: "We knew that these medals were special but were unable to determine a firm estimate because the sale was unprecedented.
"I think this is a great result for everyone. The medals are on loan to the War Memorial, building on their great collection and the vendor is also able to pass the proceeds on to his family. A piece of auction history was made tonight and we are pleased we were able to be part of it."
New Zealand-born Captain Shout, who fought in the Boer War and later moved to Australia, is the most decorated soldier to have fought with the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) at Gallipoli.
His actions gained him the Military Cross - and his promotion to captain - after he led a bayonet charge into unknown territory facing continual machine gun fire from the Turks two days after the landing, in April 1915.
He was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his valour during the famous charge on the Turkish-held trenches at Lone Pine. He died three days after combat on 11 August 1915 from injuries sustained in battle. Only 96 VCs have been issued to Australian war heroes.
The Gallipoli campaign went down in history as a costly failure, but was part of a concerted attack on Turkey, Germany's First World War ally, in an ill-equipped offensive which saw thousands die.
Of the 7,500 New Zealand casualties, there were 2,721 dead - one in four of those who landed.