A DISTINGUISHED Service Order awarded to an Accrington war hero after he masterminded the sinking of a German submarine in the First World War sold for £1,320 at an auction yesterday.

Along with Lieutenant Commander Percy Sutcliffe Peat’s two other medals – a British War Medal and a Victory Medal – it sold for £320 more than it was expected to fetch.

In April 1918, 28-year-old Lt Cdr Peat was in command of a small fishing boat, which was part of a fleet of small craft carrying out an intensive counter movement to the German submarine menace, when he engaged a powerful undersea craft, sank it and took the crew of 36 prisoner.

A spokesman for auctioneer Bonhams said: “The drifter,which had a crew of 12, was armed with only a light gun, but Lt Cdr Peat took his ship into action with such skill that the gunner fought the submarine with great effect.

“The deadly marksmanship of the gunner backed up the good work of the bridge, completely defeating the enemy and eventually the submarine hoisted the white flag.

“The crew were taken on board the little drifter and the submarine foundered.”

The Distinguished Service Order is awarded ‘for distinguished services during active operationsagainst the enemy.’ Lt Cdr Peat lived with his family in Blackburn Road.

He died aged 46, in 1936.