NAMES ON ‘ESSEX AND SUFFOLK’ DEDICATION TABLET

The colonnaded ‘Essex & Suffolk Fire Office, Colchester. 1911. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

The colonnaded ‘Essex & Suffolk Fire Office, Colchester. 1911. Courtesy/©Heather Anne Johnson.

At the beginning of research, through a ‘method of elimination’ at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission stage, a man was either 100% “identified” or identified as a “probable”.  In the case of First World War men, as each man’s research continued, it was confirmed (via census entries) that their occupation was within an insurance company.   In some instances, further evidence confirmed that the ‘Essex and Suffolk’ was the company.

The names of ‘Essex and Suffolk’ employees are listed in the order carved on the tablet.

The ‘Essex & Suffolk’ “dedication tablet”.

The ‘Essex & Suffolk’ “dedication tablet”.

FIRST WORLD WAR

COLE, D.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

COLE, DOUGLAS

Rank: Rifleman

Service No: 2847

Date of Death: 25/05/1915

Age: 21

Regiment/Service: London Regiment (First Surrey Rifles) “B” Coy.

Panel Reference: Panel 45.

Memorial: LE TOURET MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of the late Mr. H. W. and Mrs. Cole, of “Kingswood”, Priests Lane, Shenfield, Essex.  Educated at Brentwood Grammar School.

DOUGLAS COLE

Douglas was born in 1894 Brentwood, Essex.  His birth was registered during the second quarter of 1894. He was the son of Kent-born Ironmonger father Horace William and his Dagenham-born wife Sarah Ann.

When the 1901 Census was taken, the Hill family was living in Brentwood High Street.  Douglas was with his parents; five brothers; and two sisters.

When the 1911 Census was taken, the Hill family was living at 21 Warley Road, Brentwood, S. Weald. Douglas’ occupation was given as “Insurance Clerk” – he was with his parents; one sister; and three brothers.

On 21 May 1915, Douglas was killed – he has no known grave.  Douglas is commemorated on Le Touret Memorial, Rue du Bois, Richebourg, France.

Probate entry: “COLE Douglas of 15 Avenue-road Brentwood Essex rifleman 1st Surrey Rifles died 25 May 1915 in France killed in action Administration London 19 November to Horace William Cole gentleman.  Effects £145 12s. 7d.”

One of Douglas’ brothers, [Horace] Victor, enlisted on 31 August 1916 – at the age of 18 yrs 3 mths.  Initially, he was in the Royal Fusiliers but then he joined the 15th City of London Labour Corps.  On 13 Feb. 1919, Victor signed up for another year, being discharged on 20 April 1920 aged 22 yrs old.

Le Touret Memorial. Courtesy/© of Brian Hinchcliffe.

Le Touret Memorial. Courtesy/© of Brian Hinchcliffe.

_____________________________________________________________

FINNIS, W. F.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

FINNIS, W F

Rank: Second Lieutenant

Date of Death: 02/05/1917

Regiment/Service: Royal Garrison Artillery 250th Siege Bty.

Grave Reference: XV. H. 11.

Cemetery: CABARET-ROUGE BRITISH CEMETERY, SOUCHEZ

WILLIAM FRANK FINNIS

“Frank” (as he was known) was born on 26 June 1888 in Hornsey, Middlesex.  He was the son of Paddington, London-born Solicitor’s Clerk William Morgan Finnis and his Bridgwater, Somerset-born wife Susan (nee Squire).

On 5 August 1888, William was baptised at the parish church of St. Mary, in Hornsey, Middlesex.

In the 1891 Census, the family was living at 76 Lausanne Road, Hornsey, Middlesex.  William was with his parents; older sister Nellie B.; older brother Henry J.; and a maternal Aunt, Elizabeth M. Squire (“Governess”).

In the 1901 Census, the family were still at 76 Lausanne Road, Hornsey, Middlesex.  William was with hisparents; older brother Henry J.; and maternal Aunt Elizabeth M. Squire (”Typewriter Cle”).

In the 1911 Census, William was living at 9 Eardley-crescent, Earls Court, Middlesex.  He was working as an “Insurance Clerk”.   His widowed mother Susan was with him plus 2 Boarders – a “Bulgarian Board of Trade Rep” and a “Tea Taster’s Assistant”.  Another person was present – a “Gentleman”.

7646 SUPPLEMENT TO THE LONDON GAZETTE, 2 AUGUST, 1916.  TERRITORIAL FORCE.  …  ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY.  …  E. Anglian Bde. Cadet William Frank Finnis to be 2nd Lt. (on prob.). 3rd Aug. 1916.

On 4 August 1916, the Chelmsford Chronicle printed this [sic]:  SERVICE APPOINTMENTS.  THE ROYAL ARTILLERY.  Territorials.  … Cadet W. F. Finnis to be Sec.-Lt. (on probation), East Anglian R.F.A. (Aug.3).”

8275 SUPPLEMENT TO THE LONDON GAZETTE, 21 AUGUST, 1916. ROYAL GARRISON ARTILLERY.  …  2nd Lt. William Frank Finnis, from R.F.A., T.F., to be 2nd Lt. (on prob.). 22nd Aug. 1916.

On 28 September 1916, William married Daphne Squire at the parish church of St. Peter in Hammersmith, London.

On 2 May 1917, William died at No. I South African Field Ambulance in France.  William is buried at the Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery in Souchez, Pas-de-Calais, France.

On 9 June 1917, the Gloucester Citizen printed this [sic]:

THE INSURANCE WORLD.  LIFE, FIRE AND GENERAL.  Roll of Honour.  We regret to have to record the death in action of the following former Insurance Officials:- Second-Lieutenant W. F. Finnis died from wounds received on May 2nd.  Before joining up the deceased officer had been an inspector of the Essex and Suffolk Fire Office, Ipswich Branch, for about three years. …”

Probate entry: “FINNIS William Frank of 39 Eardley-crescent Earls Court Middlesex second-lieutenant R.G.A. DIED 2 May 1917 at No. I South African Field Ambulance in France Probate 20 June to Henry John Finnis cadet H.M. Army Effects £173 10s 5d.”

William Frank Finnis. Right: Sitting on bench, beside wife Daphne. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis. Right: Sitting on bench, beside wife Daphne.
Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis, in his R.G.A. uniform. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis, in his R.G.A. uniform. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

The ‘Death Penny’ sent to Daphne, William Frank Finnis’ widow. Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

The ‘Death Penny’ sent to Daphne, William Frank Finnis’ widow.
Courtesy/© of Richard Humberstone.

William Frank Finnis is buried in Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez, Pas-de-Calais. Courtesy/© of Tanneguy Desplanques.

William Frank Finnis is buried in Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez, Pas-de-Calais.
Courtesy/© of Tanneguy Desplanques.

_____________________________________________________________

FROST, L. A.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

FROST, LEONARD ARTHUR

Rank: Rifleman

Service No: 551149

Date of Death: 20/02/1918

Age: 25

Regiment/Service: London Regiment (Queen’s Westminster Rifles) 2nd/16th Bn.

Grave Reference: K. 62.

Cemetery: JERUSALEM WAR CEMETERY

Additional Information: Son of Helen Frost, of “Rockbarton,” 14, St. Barnabas Rd., Cambridge, and the late Arthur Thomas Frost.

LEONARD ARTHUR FROST

Leonard was born c1893 in Colchester, Essex.   He was the son of Mile End, Colchester-born Arthur Thomas Frost and his Norwich-born wife Helen (nee Causton).  Father Arthur was a “Clerk in Fire Insurance Office” – it is deduced that he worked for the ‘Essex and Suffolk’.

In the 1901 Census, the family was living at ‘Melrose’, Maldon Road, Colchester, Essex (next to ‘Clare Villa’).  Leonard was with his parents; younger sister Dorothy M; younger brother Percy C; and one General Servant.

In the 1911 Census, Leonard was living at 50 Maldon Road, Colchester, Essex.  He was a “Boarder” and working as an “Insurance Clerk”.   There was one other Boarder, a “Pupil to Architect”.  It is deduced that Leonard had followed his father into the ‘Essex and Suffolk’.  At some point, between the two census’, father Arthur had been promoted to manage the Cambridge branch of the Company.

On 2 April 1916, Leonard’s “Insurance Office Manager” father Arthur of “Rockbarton,” 14, St. Barnabas Rd., Cambridge” died.

On 20 February 1918, Leonard died. Probate entry: “FROST Leonard Arthur of Rockbarton St. Barnabas’-road Cambridge private 2/16th London regiment died 20 February 1918 in Syria Administration (with Will) Peterborough 17 September to Helen Frost widow. Effects £343 18s. 3d.”

Leonard Arthur Frost is buried in the Jerusalem War Cemetery. Courtesy/© of Julia & Keld. https://www.findagrave.com/

Leonard Arthur Frost is buried in the Jerusalem War Cemetery.
Courtesy/© of Julia & Keld. https://www.findagrave.com/

_____________________________________________________________

HALE, S. F.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

HALE, SIDNEY FRANK

Rank: Lieutenant

Date of Death: 31/05/1919

Age: 33

Regiment/Service: Hampshire Regiment 12th Bn.

Grave Reference: C. 1009.

Cemetery: BASINGSTOKE (WORTING ROAD) CEMETERY

Additional Information: Son of Tom and Lydia Kate Hale of “The Beeches”, Hacksworth Road, Basingstoke.

SYDNEY FRANK HALE

Sydney was born in 1886, at Millbrook in Hampshire.   He was baptised on 21 Jan 1886. Sydney was the son of Hampshire-born parents – Police Constable Thomas Hale and Lydia Kate (nee Lawrence).

In the 1891 Census, the family were living at 20 Princes Terrace, North Town, Aldershot.  Sydney was with his parents; two brothers; and two sisters.

In the 1901 Census, the family were at the Basingstoke Police Station.  Sydney was a “Commercial Clerk” – he was living with his parents; two brothers; and two sisters.  Father Thomas was now the Superintendent of Police.

In the 1911 Census, Sydney was now living at Hampden House, Phoenix Street, London.  The census entry gave his occupation as “Private Secretary in an Insurance Company”.

249 SUPPLEMENT to THE LONDON GAZETTE, 6 JANUARY, 1915.  “The undermentioned to be temporary Second Lieutenants.  Date 5 January, 1915:– … Sydney Frank Hale.”

11736 THE LONDON GAZETTE, 1 DECEMBER. 1916. “Hamps. R.  The undermentioned temp. 2nd Lts. to be temp. Lts.: — … S. F. Hale. 17 July 1916.”

7112 SUPPLEMENT TO THE LONDON GAZETTE, 15 JUNE, 1918.  “Hamps. R.  Temp. Lt. S. F. Hale relinquishes his commission on account of ill-health contracted on active service, and is granted the hon. rank of Lt. 16 June 1918.”

On 31 May, 1919, Sydney died.  Probate entry: HALE Sydney Frank of The Beeches Hackwood-road Basingstoke Hampshire died 31 May 1919 Probate London 8 October to Walter Harold McLean official.  Effects £1532 19s. 7d.

Sydney is buried in Basingstoke Worting Road Cemetery.  Sydney’s headstone reads: “In Loving Memory of / LIEUT. SYDNEY FRANK HALE. / 12TH BATT. HAMPSHIRE REG. / DIED MAY 31ST 1919 / OF SICKNESS CONTRACTED / ON ACTIVE SERVICE IN SALONICA. / AGED 33 YEARS. / THE DAY THOU GAVEST LORD IS ENDED.

DEATH OF LIEUT. S. F. HALE.

On the outbreak of war in August, 1914, Lieut. Sydney Frank Hale, second son of Mr. and Mrs. T. Hale, of The Beeches, Hackwood Road, joined the Royal Fusiliers, City of London Regt.  He was shortly afterwards given a commission in the 12th Batt. Hampshire Regt., with which Battalion he served both in France and Salonika, being on the Salonika front for a period of two years.  He was eventually invalided home with sickness contracted on active service, He passed away on Saturday last at his home.  Lieut. Hale was a most devoted son and brother, and his genial and cheerful disposition brought him many friends among whom his death will be much regretted.  The funeral took place on Wednesday at the Basingstoke new cemetery, the service being conducted by the Rev. Dr. Boustead.  The first part of the Office of Burial was said at St. Michael’s Church, where in his boyhood Lieut. Hale was a chorister.  The mourners present were: Mr. and Mrs. Hale (father and mother), Mr. and Mrs. W. I. Hale (brother and sister-in-law), Mr. Thomas Hale (brother), Mrs. and Mr. Carpenter (sister and brother-in-law), Miss Nellie Hale (sister), Miss Kathleen Bentley (fiancée), Miss Ethel Bentley, Mr. W. H. Maclean (East Sheen), Mr. N. Aungeurs (New Barnet)—the two last-mentioned representing the office staff of the Essex and Suffolk Insurance Company, of which Mr. Hale was an assessor prior to joining the Army—Captain A. W. Moody (Hants. Regt.), Second-Lieut. Stanley Noakes (Indian Army), Mr. D. Gould, Mr. E. J. Swayne, and others.  There were floral tributes from the following:–Father and mother ; Walter and Kit ; Grace and Hedley ; Nellie and Tom ; Kathleen ; Mr. and Mrs. N. Aungeurs and Nell ; Mr. S. Turner (general manager Essex and Suffolk Insurance Company) ; Mr. and Mrs. Bentley and Ethel ; Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Maclean ; the office staff Essex and Suffolk Insurance Co. ; Mr. and Mrs. Angell and family ; Mr. and Mrs. Boyer ; Mr. and Mrs. Swayne and family ; Lieut. E. G. Baker (Hants. Regt.)

Mr. and Mrs. Hale and family desire to express their heartfelt thanks to many friends who have written them letters of sympathy and also to those who kindly sent flowers.”

LEFT: Lieut. Sydney Frank Hale. RIGHT: Sydney’s headstone at Basingstoke Worting Road Cemetery. Both images courtesy/© of David Stewart.

LEFT: Lieut. Sydney Frank Hale. RIGHT: Sydney Hale’s headstone at Basingstoke Worting Road Cemetery. Both images courtesy/© of David Stewart.

Sydney is commemorated on the War Memorial in St. Michael’s Church, Basingstoke:

St. Michael’s Church War Memorial, Basingstoke. Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

St. Michael’s Church War Memorial, Basingstoke.
Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

St. Michael’s Church War Memorial Book, Basingstoke. Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

St. Michael’s Church War Memorial Book, Basingstoke.
Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

Sydney is also commemorated on the Basingstoke War Memorial:

Sydney Frank Hale. Panel-1-A-H, Basingstoke War Memorial. Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

Sydney Frank Hale. Panel-1-A-H, Basingstoke War Memorial.
Courtesy/© of David Stewart.

_____________________________________________________________

HEAP, W. H.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

HEAP, WILFRID HERBERT

Rank: Second Lieutenant

Date of Death: 25/02/1917

Age: 32

Regiment/Service: Rifle Brigade 12th Bn.

Grave Reference: IV. H. 17.

Cemetery: A.I.F. BURIAL GROUND, FLERS

Additional Information: Son of Joseph Herbert and Mary Heap, of Colchester; husband of Edith Elizabeth Heap, of 18, Church Avenue, Beckenham, Kent.

WILFRID HERBERT HEAP

Wilfrid was born in 1884, in Oxenhope, Yorkshire.  His birth was registered during 4th Quarter.  Son of Oxenhope-born parents Commercial Traveller Joseph Herbert (Clothing) and Mary Harriet (nee Gibbon).

In the 1891 Census, the family was living at 87 Winnock Road, Colchester, Essex.  Wilfrid was with his parents; two sisters; and two brothers.

In the 1901 Census, the family was living at 47 Roman Road, Colchester, Essex. His occupation was given as an “Apprentice Wholesale Clothing Worker”.   Wilfrid was with his parents; three sisters; and one brother.

In the 1911 Census, the family was still living at 47 Roman Road, Colchester, Essex.  Wilfrid was now working as an “Insurance Clerk”.  Wilfrid was with his parents; four sisters; and one brother.   It is logically deduced that Wilfrid was working for the ‘Essex and Suffolk’.

During the 3rd Quarter of 1915, Wilfrid married Miss Edith Elizabeth Paul at Wandsworth, London.

1387 THE LONDON GAZETTE, 9 FEBRUARY, 1917. War Office, 9th February, 1917. REGULAR FORCES.  The undermentioned temp. 2nd Lts. (attd.) (unless otherwise stated) are transferred to Serv. Bns., with seniority shown against their names: — … Rif. Brig.— … W. H. Heap. 22nd Nov. 1916.

On 25 February 1917, Wilfrid died.  He is buried at the A.I.F. Burial Ground at Flers, Somme, France.

Probate entry: “HEAP Wilfred Herbert of Cranford-road West Side Clapham Common Surrey second-lieutenant 12th Rifle Brigade died 25 February 1917 in France Administration London 16 May to Edith Elizabeth Heap widow.  Effects £116 11s. 3d.

Wilfrid Herbert Heap. A.I.F. Burial Ground at Flers. Courtesy/© of Marijke Taffein. https://www.findagrave.com/

Wilfrid Herbert Heap. A.I.F. Burial Ground at Flers.
Courtesy/© of Marijke Taffein. https://www.findagrave.com/

Wilfred is also commemorated within Colchester’s Roll of Honour.

_____________________________________________________________

HUMBY, A.

It is deduced that this is Ambrose Humby:  “A” is on the second Dedication Tablet but “T” is given on the IWM register, for the first.   The CWGC ‘War Dead’ list does not give a “T” but there is one “A”.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS: HUMBY, AMBROSE

Rank: Air Mechanic 2nd Class

Service No: 52995

Date of Death: 29/07/1917

Age: 34

Regiment/Service: Royal Flying Corps 20th Sqdn.

Grave Reference: II. O. 9A.

Cemetery: WIMEREUX COMMUNAL CEMETERY

Additional Information: Son of the late John Charles and Harriett Humby, of London; husband of Mabel Humby, of Sudbury, Harrow.

AMBROSE HUMBY

Ambrose’s birth was registered in the 4th Quarter of 1882, at St. Pancras, London.  He was the son of Southampton-born Coach Maker & Sewing Marchine Agent John Charles and London-born Harriett (nee Terrey).

Ambrose and his family have not been discovered in the 1891 Census but, in the 1901 one, the family were living at 52 Upper Hope Place, Mount Pleasant, Liverpool.   Ambrose was with his parents; two sisters; three brothers; and a Boarder.

In 1907, Ambrose married Miss Mabel Hermine Rich, in Llanrwst, Denbighshire.

In the 1911 Census, Ambrose and wife Mabel were visiting Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Nelson at 9A Grove End Road, Marylebone, London NW.  Ambrose was a “Coach Trimmer”.

1911-1916:          Did Ambrose become employed by Essex and Suffolk Insurance Co. during this time?

1917, 29 Jul:        Death. Probate entry: “HUMBY Ambrose of the Cottage Layfield Sudbury near Harrow Middlesex died 29 July 1917 at Wimereux in France Probate London 14 December to Kate Humby spinster.  Effects £172 17s. 2d.”

Information thanks to Andrew Pentland (http://www.airhistory.org.uk/rfc):-

Ambrose’s batch of service numbers relates to civilians who joined the Royal Flying Corps in January 1917; he was designated Air Mechanic Class 2, having entered as a Class 3; he served with 20 Squadron in France; his medal card is WO 372/10/104050. The FE2d aircraft operated during this period, used for observation and reconnaissance.

The squadron was based at Boisdinghem in January 1917, moving to Ste-Marie-Cappel on 15 April 1917.  Ambrose died of meningitis.  His military record should show his occupation before the war and address. The period between joining and going to France seems very short, suggesting he had experience as a mechanic before the war.

Ambrose Humby. Wimereux Communal Cemetery. Courtesy/© of Linda Robson.

Ambrose Humby is buried at Wimereux Communal Cemetery.
Courtesy/© of Linda Robson.

_____________________________________________________________

MASON, T.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

MASON, THOMAS HENRY

Rank: Corporal

Service No: 720444

Date of Death: 18/09/1916

Age: 21

Regiment/Service: London Regiment “C” Coy. 1st/24th Bn.

Panel Reference: Pier and Face 9 D 9 C 13 C and 12 C.

Memorial: THIEPVAL MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of Thomas Henry and Sarah Maria Ellen Mason; husband of Kate Alice Mason, of 39, Scole Rd., Brome, Eye, Suffolk.

THOMAS HENRY MASON

Thomas Henry was born 26 September 1894 at 142 Walworth Road, London.  He was baptised 23 November 1894 at St. John Evangelist, Walworth.   Thomas’ parents were Surrey-born Thomas Henry Mason and his Dorset-born wife Sarah Maria Ellen (nee King).

The day after Thomas’ first birthday, 27 September 1895, his father Thomas Henry Senior died of T.B. On 3 February 1901, Thomas’ mother Ellen married John Grist at St. John Evangelist, Walworth – Ellen became John Grist’s fourth wife.

The 1901 Census gives Thomas living at 14 Hillery Road, Newington, London, with his step-father; mother; two sisters; one brother; and four step-brothers.

On 27 April 1902, mother Ellen died. Family-lore recounts that: “John Grist was a drunken, violent wife beater” and he “used to beat the children”; mother Ellen was “severely beaten by her husband whilst pregnant” and as she was seen lying in her coffin “she was black and blue with both her eyes blacked”.  At this point, Tommy had lost both his parents – he was only 6 years old.

Step-father John Grist would beat the children. John Grist’s fifth wife, Jessie, looked after the family. John Grist became ill and, eventually, eventually, Jessie was unable to care for the children – none of whom were hers. (N.B. Grist would die on 12 October 1905, from liver Cancer and cardiac failure).

In 1904, Tommy and older brother Charles became Dr. Barnardo’s boys. On 30 March 1905, the two brothers set sail for Canada, with a “Dr. Barnardo’s Party” of 269 boys.  The boys’ maternal grandfather, John G. King, signed the papers to send them to Canada – the boy’s never forgave him.

In Canada, Thomas and Charles were split up although, somehow, they managed to get messages to each other eventually. Tommy suffered greatly on a farm: he ran away a few times but was returned back to the farm.  This must have been a traumatic experience for them and all others who went through the same child migration scheme.

As soon as the two brothers were old enough, they returned home to England because they hated being in Canada.

On 25 October 1914, Tommy married Kate Alice Coker at the St. Saviours Church in St Albans, Hertfordshire.  Apparently, they were married by the famous hymn composer Henry Darwin Burton.  Tommy’s occupation at the time was “Private 1st London Regiment (Insurance Comp. Messenger)”.  Their only child, another “Thomas Henry”, was born on 7 August 1915.

During WW1, Thomas was given leave to briefly return home, he told the family that he knew he wouldn’t survive the war and he was correct … on 18 September 1916, he was killed on the Somme.

Tommy’s brother Charles was wounded and hospitalised back in England. Mother Bertha greeted son Charles at the railway station, he was dressed in the ‘Hospital Blue’ uniform. This would identify him as a convalescing soldier, as opposed to a man who had failed to enlist to serve his country.

Family-lore recounts that “Thomas had died too soon and had been a wonderful husband and father … and uncle”. 

Left: Thomas H. Mason, with brother Charles. Thomas in uniform, perched left with brother Charles behind. Courtesy/© Maggie Goring.

Left: Thomas H. Mason on arm of chair, with brother Charles.
Thomas in uniform, perched left with brother Charles behind.
Courtesy/© Maggie Goring.

Thomas H. Mason: Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

Thomas H. Mason: Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial's Stone of Remembrance. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial’s Stone of Remembrance.
Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. Courtesy/©Heather Anne Johnson.

_____________________________________________________________

WALSHAM, W. T.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

WALSHAM, WILLIAM TERRY

Rank: Serjeant

Service No: 6/1562

Date of Death: 02/03/1917

Age: 21

Regiment/Service: Royal Sussex Regiment 4th Bn

Grave Reference: XXI. K. 6A.

Cemetery: ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY

Additional Information: Son of William Henry and Phoebe Anne Walsham, of Brighton, Sussex. Born at Brighton.

WILLIAM TERRY WALSHAM

William Terry Walsham was born 1895 Brighton, Sussex – his birth was registered during  the fourth quarter of 1895.  William was the son of Brighton-born parents Beer Retailer William Henry J. Walsham and Phoebe Anne.

The 1901 Census entry has William living at 12 Basket Makers’ Arms, Brighton, Sussex – with his parents and one servant.

In the 1911 Census, William was at 54 Old Steine, Brighton, Sussex. William’s occupation was a “Solicitor Clerk”.   He was with his “Hall Porter” father and “Housekeeper “mother.

No more information is known about William Terry Walsham.

William Terry Walsham: Etaples Military Cemetery: 1918. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

William Terry Walsham: Etaples Military Cemetery: 1918.
Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

_____________________________________________________________

WHITE, C. M.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

WHITE, CLAUDE MILNE

Rank: Air Mechanic 2nd Class

Service No: 69395

Date of Death: 25/11/1917

Age: 29

Regiment/Service: Royal Flying Corps 38th Sqdn.

Grave Reference: North-East of church.

Cemetery: COPYTHORNE (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD

Additional Information: Husband of Alice May White, of Romsey Rd., Cadnam, Southampton.

CLAUDE MILNE WHITE

Claude Milne White was born on 21 June 1889 Matlock, Derbyshire.  He was the son of Kent-born Grocer Stephen White and his Middlesex-born wife Ellen (nee Tyler).

In the 1891 Census, Claude was living in Dale Road, Matlock, Derbyshire – with parents and one servant.  In the 1901 Census, Claude was living in York Street, Southampton, Hampshire – he was with his parents and his younger brother.  Also in the household were a visitor and one servant.

During the third quarter of 1910, Claude married Alice May Hawkins in Southampton.

The 1911 Census shows Claude living at 49 Chapel Road, Southampton. Claude’s occupation was an “Insurance Clerk” – the ‘Essex & Suffolk’ had a Southampton Branch.  Claude was living with his Hawkins in-laws (“Baker” father-in-law); two sister-in-laws; one brother-in-law; wife Alice; daughter (2 months); and one servant.

On 25 November 1917, Claude Milne White died.  The probate entry for Claude reads: “WHITE Claude Milne of Romsey-road Cadnam Hampshire 2nd air mechanic R.F.C. died 25 November 1917 at Whitlow Lodge Hospital Melton Mowbray Leicestershire Administration London 21 February to Alice May White widow.  Effects £135.

“CLAUDE MILNE WHITE

Claude joined the Royal Flying Corps and was posted to the 38th Squadron based at Castle Bromwich, West Midlands.  He died on 25th November 1917 from heart failure following an appendix operation.

The Hampshire Advertiser, 1st December 1917:  “Military Funeral – The interment took place with military honours at Copythorne Churchyard of Second-Air Mechanic Claude Milne White, who passed away after a short illness at the Wicklow Lodge Red Cross Hospital, Melton Mowbray.  The deceased who had been for some time a resident of Copythorne, was only 28 years of age, and the deepest sympathy is felt for his young widow.  The body, enclosed in a massive oak coffin, was conveyed from Totton Railway Station in a covered R.F.C. lorry, and was accompanied by a number of his comrades, who officiated as bearers.  There were several mourning coaches containing the relatives and it was also necessary to provide a carriage to take the many beautiful floral tributes,  It was an impressive scene, and many of the villagers attended to pay a tribute of respect to one who was highly esteemed by all.”

Claude was born on 21st June 1889 at Matlock Bridge, Derbyshire, the son of Stephen and Ellen née Tyler.  His younger brother was Harold.  The family moved to York Street, Southampton and on leaving school Claude became an insurance clerk.  On 8 September 1910 he married Alice Hawkins of Chapel Road in Southampton.  Their daughter Gwen was born in 1911.  They moved to Ross House, Redbridge and later to Forsythia Cottage in Romsey Road, Cadham.  The Hawkins family were confectioners and bakers.  They moved to Winsor from Southampton and concentrated on outside catering in large marquees and country houses.”  (Courtesy/© of Copythorne Parish History Society).

Left: Claude Milne White. Courtesy/© of Copythorne Parish History Society. Right: Claude’s headstone at Copythorne, Hampshire. Courtesy/© of Fiona Sheffield. GRANT HIM LORD ETERNAL REST AND LET LIGHT PERPETUAL SHINE ON HIM

Left: Claude Milne White. Courtesy/© of Copythorne Parish History Society.
Right: Claude’s headstone at Copythorne, Hampshire. Courtesy/© of Fiona Sheffield.
GRANT HIM LORD ETERNAL REST AND LET LIGHT PERPETUAL SHINE ON HIM

_____________________________________________________________

WORGER, S. R.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

WORGER, SIDNEY RICHARD

Rank: Private

Service No: SPTS/3388

Date of Death: 31/07/1916

Regiment/Service: Royal Fusiliers 24th Bn.

Panel Reference: Pier and Face 8 C 9 A and 16 A.

Memorial: THIEPVAL MEMORIAL

SYDNEY RICHARD WORGER

Sydney Richard Worger was born in 1875 Pimlico, Westminster, London.  Sydney’s birth was registered during the first quarter of 1875, in St. George Hanover Square District, Westminster.  He was the son of Chelsea-born Coachbuilder Richard Worger and his Westminster-born wife Anna Maria (nee Fulton).

In 1881 Census, Sydney was living at 18 Palace Street, Westminster.  He was with his parents; three sisters Marguerite Annie, Edith Kate and Mary Alice; and a Domestic Servant.

In the 1891 Census, Sidney was living at 204 Ebury StreetSt George Hanover Square, Belgrave, London.  Sidney was noted as an “Apprentice (Coach Builders)” – he was with his widowed mother “Annie” (“Living on own means”); his sisters “Margaret”, “Edith K.” and “Mary Alice”; a new brother Richard Fulton Worger; plus a General Servant.   Sidney’s father had died in 1885.

At some point, Sidney became an actor.  He took the professional name of “Richard S. Fulton”, created from swapping his first and middle names around and using his mother’s maiden name.

In the 1901 Census, Sydney was living at 4 Chichester Street, Westminster, London. The census entry shows him as “Richard”. His occupation was “Insurance Clerk” and he was with his widowed mother (who was “Living on own means”); older sister Edith Kate; and a General Domestic Servant.

During the third quarter of 1904, Sydney married Hampstead-born divorcee Mrs. Gertrude Mary Mortimer Bandmann (nee Evans) in Westminster, London.   Gertrude had become an actress after marrying actor Maurice Edmund Bandmann in 1895. However, she began divorce proceedings against Bandmann in August 1902 – her grounds were “Adultery coupled with desertion of the Petitioner for two years and upwards without reasonable excuse.”  On 24 August 1904, Gertrude was granted her divorce (Final Decree) from Maurice Bandmann.

The 1911 Census shows Sydney living at 8 Lion Walk, Colchester, Essex.  Sydney’s occupation was “Insurance Clerk”.  He was shown as a “Lodger”, along with his wife Gertrude.   Only the High Street end of the Lion Walk exists today – a modern shopping centre was built on most of it.

Sydney enlisted into the Royal Fusiliers regiment in Colchester, in March 1915, becoming part of the 24th (Service) Battalion (2nd Sportsmen’s).    On 15th November 1915, Sydney and his Battalion left for France.

On 26th July 1916, Sidney was wounded at Bernafay Wood (8 miles from Albert, on the Somme) – the event was recorded in the War Diary for that day: “promiscuous shelling all day, several casualties”.  

It would seem that Sidney’s wound/s did not prevent him from continuing to serve because it is officially recorded that he was “killed in action” on 31st July 1916.

On 4 August 1921, The Stage printed [sic]:  “FULTON RICHARD S.—(S. R. Worger), 2nd Sportsmen’s Battalion.  Killed while voluntary stretcher-bearing in Delville Wood, July 30, 1916.  This is loving and proud memory by Mother, Wife, Sisters and Brother.”

On 23 August 1916, The Era printed one article and two family notices [sic]:

Another Actor Hero. I regret to have to announce the death of Richard Fulton (Sidney Richard Worger), who will be remembered as acting under the managements of Mr. W. Maclaren, Messrs. Hill and Ayrton, Mr. J. A. Campbell, and others.  Attached to the Sportsmen’s Battalion of the 24th Royal Fusiliers since the outbreak of the war, Richard Fulton has been at the front for the past nine months, and met his death whilst doing stretcher-bearing work.  The sympathy of our readers will be extended to the widow (Gertrude Evans), who is nursing at the Military Hospital, Colchester, and also to his mother and sisters (Olive and Mary Fulton), and his brother (Geoffrey Fulton), who is shortly leaving for the front with the King’s Royal Rifles.” 

N.B.  Perhaps read “May” for “Mary” … two Worger sisters took to the stage also – under the professional names of “Miss Olive Fulton” and “Miss May Fulton”.

N.B. Sidney’s wife, Gertrude, would have only had a half-mile walk, from home at Plum Hall Cottage if she was working at Colchester Military Hospital.  However, her British Red Cross card has her working at ‘Gostwycke Field Hospital’ in Cambridge Road, Colchester – which was affiliated to the Military Hospital. “Gostwycke’ was only approximately 1 mile away. See more about Gertrude here: https://greatwarhomehospitals.wordpress.com/home/colchester-gostwycke-field-hospital-plus-st-martins-house/

The Era, 23 August 1916 [sic]:

FULTON.—Killed about July 29, on the Somme, Richard Fulton (née Sidney Richard Worger).  Inserted by his devoted mother, sisters and brother, Geoffrey Fulton (King’s Royal Rifles).”

WORGER.—Killed on the Somme, about July 29, whilst acting as a volunteer stretcher-bearer, Sidney Richard Worger (Richard Fulton), 2nd Sportsman’s Battalion, husband and devoted comrade of Gertrude Worger (Gertrude Evans), of Plum Hall Cottage, Colchester.  Aged 41.”

On 1 September 1916, the Chelmsford Chronicle printed this notice [sic]: “Sidney R. Worger, Royal Fusiliers, killed while carrying wounded, was for several years in the accounts department of the Essex and Suffolk Fire Office, at Colchester, was 41 years of age, and lived at Plum Hall Cottage.”   Plum Hall Cottage would have stood close to Plum Hall, which stands at the Junction of Berechurch Road and Mersea Road but it has not been identified today.  

A piece from ‘The Royal Fusiliers in the Great War’ by H. C. O’Neill describes the action that Sydney took part in:-

“… On July 30th C Company of the 24th Battalion was engaged.  On the previous evening the battalion had taken over the front line from the southern edge of Delville Wood to Waterlot Farm, and on the 30th they advanced against a German trench some 600 yards east of Waterlot Farm.  A thick mist lay over the ground as the men went forward, and it was very difficult to keep direction. When this initial and serious handicap had been overcome, it was found that the German wire had been uncut.  “The king of the war,” as the French called barbed wire, exercised its sovereignty once again.  Captain C. S. Meares was killed on the wire, leading his men, and the company fought valiantly, but to no purpose. C Company attacked with 3 officers and 114 other ranks.  One wounded officer and 11 other ranks remained at the end of the day.  Such was the price paid for co-operation in the attack on Guillemont. …”

The Stage publication, on 20 February 1919, printed a very, very long article about a Commemoration Service held at Westminster Abbey – Sydney’s name is amongst the list of fallen actors [sic]:

SOLDIER ACTORS. IN MEMORY OF THE FALLEN.  THE ABBEY SERVICE.

Very beautiful and moving was the service arranged by the Actors’ Church Union in memory of members of the theatrical profession who have fallen in the war, in Westminister Abbey on Tuesday.  At noon the procession of clergy and choristers, followed by the Dean of Westminster, slowly proceeded up the aisle.  The opening hymn was The Son of God goes forth to War, and afterwards came a rendering of Sir Arthur Sullivan’s setting of Psalm xxiii, 4: “Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me, Thy rod and Thy staff comfort me.”  A brief address was spoken by the Dean … … 

DRURY LANE MEMORIAL.

The Roll of Honour of soldiers connected with the stage who have given their lives in the service of their country was unveiled by the Bishop of London on Monday, at noon.  The Roll is in the vestibule of the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, near the box-office.  It occupies the place that formerly commemorated the visit to Drury Road, in May 1911, of Kaiser Wilhelm, when Money was performed.  The panels contain the names of 250 actors, musicians, and workers for the stage who have fallen in the war.  The centre panel bears the following inscription:—

1914-1918.

Actors, Musicians, Writers, and Workers for the Stage who have given their lives for their country.

Honour to the immortal dead—that great white company of shining souls who gave their youth that the world might grow old in peace.

“Their name liveth for ever more.”

These nobly played their parts.

These heard the call.

For God and King and Home they gave their all.

Since ye who pass in quest of happy hours,

Behold the price at which those hours were bought,

Strew here the fragrance of memorial flowers,

The silent tribute of a grateful thought.

The following are the names and the order in which they appear on the Roll of Honour:—

… Fulton, Richard S. (Sydney Richard Worger) …”

As “Official War Dead”, Sidney is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing on the Somme – which stands approximately 8 miles from Delville Wood and Bernafay Wood.

N.B. Sidney’s brother Richard Fulton Worger was also “on the stage”… he was known professionally as “Mr. Geoffrey Fulton”.   From “1904 – 1909, he toured with his own company, producing four plays, of which he was author” (The Stage, 6 July 1911).  The plays were: “A Bid for Fortune”; “The Poor Must Live”; “The Dear Homeland”; and “A Girl Redeemed From Sin” but he suffered financial losses with these ventures and was declared bankrupt in 1911.   That said, he continued to tour with his own company and write more plays (“A Bad Girl’s Wedding”; The Girl Who Broke Her Mother’s Heart”; A Girl Redeemed from Sin”; “The Poor Must Live”; etc.) up until August 1916 – just before he began his First World War army service. Richard first served with the King’s Royal Rifle Corps and, then (as Sidney), with the Royal Fusiliers.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. Sydney R. Worger. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. Sydney R. Worger.
Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. Sydney R. Worger. Courtesy of Heather Anne Johnson.

Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. Sydney R. Worger.
Courtesy/© Heather Anne Johnson.

Sydney is also commemorated on Colchester’s Roll of Honour and on Colchester’s ‘Avenue of Remembrance’.   In 1933, a “Remembrance” avenue of trees was opened in Colchester – along Colchester’s new By-pass.  For a fee, a tree could be dedicated to a person and each tree would possess a plaque to that effect.   Most dedications were “In Remembrance” of those who died during World War One.  On 17 October 1998, a new brick-built Memorial Wall was dedicated – holding the names of those originally commemorated.

Mr. John Snowdon is acknowledged and thanked for his contribution to Sydney’s profile.

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SECOND WORLD WAR

‘The Fire Office’ being the history of The Essex and Suffolk Equitable Insurance Society Limited 1802 – 1952’ By Bernard Drew [sic]:

“… One member of the staff gained the Distinguished Service Cross and was also mentioned in despatches; another was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, and six men, all of whom were in the Royal Air Force, made the supreme sacrifice.  They were H. Bennett; S. D. Hill; E. W. Paine; J. D. Sargeant; J. R. Thompson and A. L. T. Todd, and these names have now been added to the War Memorial at The Fire Office at Colchester. …” 

BENNETT, H.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

BENNETT, HARRY

Rank: Flying Officer

Trade: Pilot

Service No: 190245

Date of Death: 04/03/1945

Age: 24

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 214 Sqdn.

Awards: D F C

Grave Reference: Sec. Z. Block 28. Grave 21989.

Cemetery:  ISLINGTON CEMETERY AND CREMATORIUM

Additional Information: Son of Harry and Chrissy Ivy Bennett, of Islington, London.

HARRY BENNETT

“Benny”, as Harry Bennett was nick-named, was in a Fortress 111 of the 214 Squadron engaged on Electronic Counter-measures duties when he was a victim of the Luftwaffe operation called ‘Gisela’.  This was a large scale intruder operation, with the task of catching returning Bomber Command operational and Heavy Conversion Unit training aircraft – from the Thames Estuary up to North Yorkshire.

This Luftwaffe force consisted of about 200 Junker 88 night fighters and accounted for nearly thirty Bomber Command operational and H.C.U. aircraft being either lost or written off – with the Luftwaffe losing 25 Junker 88s.

The Germans’ technique was to fly low over the North Sea, under the Chain Home Low radar with radio silence.  They were instructed not to attack any British bomber aircraft over the sea so as to deny an early warning, of intruders, to the R.A.F.

http://www.214squadron.org.uk/Crews_and_losses_Fortress.htm: Flying Fortress Mark III HB815 (4 March 1945) BU-J.  On arriving back at Oulton, at least one Junkers 88 came back with them, Flying Officer Bennett was on the circuit and about to land but he had to do another circuit as a damaged plane was given priority, (flown by Bob Davies). Almost at the same time as the other plane landed, Bennett, with landing lights on and wheels down, was hit. The plane, on fire, hit some trees and blew up. Bennett was alive but badly injured when picked up but later died of his injuries and other crew members were killed. Only Alistair McDermid and Bill Church survived. …”

See further details of the story of this incident: “INCIDENT WITH REGARDS TO THE LOSS OF FORTRESS HB 815 BU-J AT RAF OULTON ON 3 – 4 MARCH 1945 WRITTEN BY BOB DAVIES. …”  http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/19/a1073819.shtm

1596 SUPPLEMENT TO THE LONDON GAZETTE, 23 MARCH, 1945.  Distinguished Flying Cross. Acting Flying Officer Harry BENNETT (190245), R.A.F.V.R., 214 Sqn. 

Acknowledgement and many thanks to members of WW2talk forum for the information surrounding Harry’s death: http://ww2talk.com/index.php

 Islington Cemetery headstone for Harry Bennett, DFC and parents. Courtesy/© Iain MacFarlaine.

Islington Cemetery headstone for Harry Bennett, DFC and parents. Courtesy/© Iain MacFarlaine.

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HILL, S. D.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

HILL, STANLEY DENYS

Rank: Sergeant

Trade: Pilot

Service No: 741410

Date of Death: 12/08/1940

Age: 23

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 83 Sqdn.

Grave Reference: 14. F. 13.

Cemetery: REICHSWALD FOREST WAR CEMETERY

Additional Information: Son of Thomas Charles and Minnie Hill, of Dulwich, London.

STANLEY DENYS HILL

Stanley Denys Hill was born in 1917 – his birth was registered during the fourth quarter of 1917, in the Croydon District.  Stanley was the son of Thomas Charles Hill & his wife Minnie.

In the Electoral Register for Southwark (Camberwell), 1938, Stanley was living at 29 Woodwards Road, Camberwell.

In the Electoral Register for Southwark (Dulwich and North), 1939, Stanley was living at 29 Allison Grove Dulwich S.E.21.

Stanley was killed whilst flying in a Hampden I, P4340 of No 83 Squadron, which was shot down by flak during a raid on the Dortmund-Ems Canal:  https://www.ordinarycrew.co.uk/bomber-command-losses

Stanley’s probate entry reads:  HILL Stanley Denys of 29 Allison-grove Dulwich London S.E. 21 died 13 August 1940 on war service Administration London 20 May to Reginald Walter Hill company director.  Effects £145 4s. 2d.  Former Grant D.R. Oxford 7 April 1942.”

N.B. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission has Stanley’s death date as 12 August 1940 but all other official entries has his death date as 13 August.

Stanley Denys Hill. Reichswald Forest War Cemetery. Courtesy/© of Mike Reid.

Stanley Denys Hill. Reichswald Forest War Cemetery. Courtesy/© of Mike Reid.

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PAINE, E. W.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

PAINE, EDWARD WILLIAM

Rank: Sergeant

Service No: 1375140

Date of Death: 21/10/1941

Age: 21

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 82 Sqdn.

Panel Reference: Panel 49.

Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of Horace E. and Lilian Paine, of New Barnet, Hertfordshire.

EDWARD WILLIAM PAINE

Born 1920.  Birth registered 1Q Barnet, Hertfordshire.  Son of Male Nurse Horace Edward Paine and his wife Lilian (nee Hamand)

RAF Sgt Paine, E W (Wireless Air Gunner):

https://www.awm.gov.au/images/collection/pdf/RC09125_019–1-.pdf Page 32

“RAAF PERSONNEL SERVING ON ATTACHMENT IN ROYAL AIR FORCE SQUADRONS

AND SUPPORT UNITS IN WORLD WAR 2 AND MISSING WITH NO KNOWN GRAVE.

400456 Pilot Officer BARBER, Bruce Bertram

Source: AWM 237 (65) NAA: A705, 163/23/81 Commonwealth War Graves records.

Aircraft Type: Blenheim

Serial number: V 6146

Radio call sign: UX – O

Unit: ATTD 82 SQN RAF

Summary:

Blenheim V6146 of 82 (United Provinces) Sqn RAF, was one of a formation of eight aircraft which took off on 21 October 1941 at 13.30hrs to attack a convoy off the Dutch coast. The convoy was sighted about 10 miles off Ijmuiden, Holland, and was attacked at 14.35hrs. All aircraft were subject to intense anti-aircraft fire. V6146 was attacked by an ME 109 fighter and seen to crash into the sea at approx 14.40hrs. There were no survivors and the crew were lost at sea.

Crew:

RAAF 400456 PO Barber, B B, Captain (Pilot)

RCAF PO Pibus, H H (Observer)

RAF Sgt Paine, E W (Wireless Air Gunner)

Those missing have no known grave and their names are commemorated on the Memorial to the Missing, Runnymede, Surrey, UK.”

Edward died “on or since” 21 October 1941. Probate entry: PAINE Edward William of 26 Uplands-road East Barnet Hertfordshire died on or since 21 October 1941 on war service Administration Llandudno 20 July to Horace Edward Paine male nurse.  Effects £84 15s.”

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 49. Edward William Paine. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 49. Edward William Paine.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

SEE MORE PHOTOGRAPHS OF RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL AT THE END OF SECOND WORLD WAR LIST- Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick

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SARGEANT, J. D.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

SARGEANT, JAMES DOUGLAS

Rank: Sergeant

Service No: 656315

Date of Death: 06/09/1942

Age: 22

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 51 Sqdn.

Panel Reference: Panel 93.

Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of Nelson and May Sargeant, of Colchester, Essex.

JAMES DOUGLAS SARGEANT

Born 1919 Colchester, Essex.  Birth registered 4Q.  Son of Nelson Sargeant and his wife May Alice (nee Bennell).

James’ father Nelson Sargeant was born 1887 in Workington, Cumberland and, in the 1911 Census, he was boarding at 151 Butt Road, Colchester, Essex – his occupation was Municipal Clerk.  Mother May Alice was born 11 September 1888 in Colchester, Essex.

In the 1911 Census, May was living at 24 Rawstorn Road, Colchester with Colchester-born Stonemason father Charles; Dover-born step-mother Jane Mary (nee Jones); and two older sisters Florence and Ethel. May’s occupation was Milliner.  There was an older sister Ellen, not at home.  The death of the girls’ Colchester-born mother Ellen (nee Godfrey) was registered in the 3rd Quarter of 1891 and Charles remarried in 1895.

Nelson Sargeant and May Alice Bennell were married in the 4th Quarter of 1913. The birth of James Douglas was registered in the 4th Quarter 1919 (Colchester) and the birth of son Peter C. was registered during the 2nd Quarter of 1923 (Colchester).

James Douglas Sargeant died on 6 Sept. 1942. Probate entry: “SARGEANT James Douglas of Capel-road Colchester died on or since 5 September 1942 … to Nelson Sargeant local government official. Effects £160 5s. 7d.”

Father Nelson “of 37 Holman Crescent Colchester” died on 30 August 1959.  Mother May Alice “of 37 Holman Crescent Colchester” died 25 November 1973.

Commemorated on the Colchester Roll of Honour (Colchester Town Hall) and the ‘Camulos’ website page http://www.camulos.com/war/second.htm.

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 93. James Douglas Sargeant. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 93. James Douglas Sargeant. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

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THOMPSON, J. R.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS:

THOMPSON, JOHN ROBERT

Rank: Sergeant

Service No: 657132

Date of Death: 13/05/1943

Age: 30

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force 218 (Gold Coast) Sqdn.

Panel Reference: Panel 167.

Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of George Samuel and Margaret Thompson; husband of Louisa Ethel Thompson.

JOHN ROBERT THOMPSON

Born 24 September 1912 Sydenham, London.  Son of Railway Brakesman George Samuel Thompson and his wife of Margaret (nee Hamden).

The Thompson family was living at 20 Colehill Lane, Fulham, when father George enlisted into the Royal Engineers on 29 November 1915.  The family was still at that address on another date given on the Army Service record – 2 December 1916: that gives John and his sister Joan Adelaide (16.6.1916) as dependents.  John married “Ethel Louisa Hall” during the 4th Quarter of 1940, Wandsworth.

Sgt. J.R. Thompson-RAF:

https://birminghamhistory.co.uk/forum/index.php?threads/short-stirling-bomber.14262/

Short Stirling Bomber

Stirling Mark III HA-K 218 Squadron, Downham Market. Did not return from raid to Duisburg on 13 May, 1943. Crashed in North Sea. Aircraft was delivered to 218 Sqdn between Dec/43 – Feb/43. 

Took off from Downham Market @0044hrs on 13 May, 1943 for Duisburg, Germany. Hit by flak and crashed into North Sea. No survivors. Crew: Pilot P/O R.J. Bryans-RCAF; Flt Engineer Sgt F.B.Holmes-RAF; Navigator Sgt. J.R. Thompson-RAF; air bomber Sgt J.Davies-RAF; Wireless Operator Sgt.J.Fitton-RAF; Air gunner Sgt. K.L.Garman-RCAF; Air Gunner Sgt K.G.Money-RAF Sgt Fitton’s boby recovered from North Sea on 1 Aug/43. (Sgt Garman was an American from Republic, Kansas serving with the RCAF.) Not known if this crew were ones in any of the photos.” [Wayne wtagg, Aug 25, 2008].

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 167. John Robert Thompson. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial. Panel 167. John Robert Thompson. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

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TODD, A. L. T.

COMMONWEALTH WAR GRAVES COMMISSION DETAILS: TODD, ARTHUR LANDON THOMAS

Rank: Pilot Officer

Service No: 79558

Date of Death: 04/02/1941

Age: 21

Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve

Panel Reference: Panel 35.

Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

Additional Information: Son of the Revd. Hugh Wilfrid Todd, M.C., M.A., and Clara Todd, of Cambridge.

ARTHUR LANDON THOMAS TODD

Born 1919 Cambridge. Birth registered 3Q 1919. Son of The Revd. Hugh Wilfrid Todd, M.C., M.A., and Clara Todd [nee Slater].

THE LONDON GAZETTE, 18 JUNE, 1940: The undermentioned are granted commissions for the duration of hostilities as Pilot Officers on probation on the dates stated: — Sergeants … 2nd June 1940 … 741207 Arthur Landon Thomas Todd (79558).

Runnymede Memorial: Panel 35. Arthur Landon Thomas Todd. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial: Panel 35. Arthur L. T. Todd. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Arthur is also commemorated on the Roll of Honour at the Perse School in Cambridge (“Cambridge’s oldest surviving secondary school”) and the Chesterton War Memorial, Cambridgeshire.

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RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL

near Egham, Surrey, England

All Runnymede photographs courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Entrance to the Runnymede Memorial. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Entrance to the Runnymede Memorial.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Shrine Building. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Shrine Building.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Stone of Remembrance, Runnymede Memorial. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Stone of Remembrance, Runnymede Memorial.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Information Board. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Information Board.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Plaque. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Runnymede Memorial Plaque.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Map of the Runnymede Memorial site. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Map of the Runnymede Memorial site.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Sir Eugen & Lady Effie Millington-Drake gifted the Runnymede Memorial site. Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

Sir Eugen & Lady Effie Millington-Drake gifted the Runnymede Memorial site.
Courtesy/© of Andrea Ruddick.

NEXT:  THANKS & SOURCES

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