9th Sep 1916. Lady Dorothie Feilding Gains The Military Medal

LADY DOROTHIE FEILDING GAINS THE MILITARY MEDAL.

DECORATED BY THE KING.

Lady Dorothie Feilding, the Earl of Denbigh’s youngest daughter, is first on the list of the British women military medallists. The honour is awarded for her gallant service with Dr Hector Munro’s Field Ambulance. For months she tended the sick and wounded in the cellar of a house close to the Belgian trenches. The situation became so dangerous the Lady Dorothie and her companions were at last persuaded to move, and ten minutes after they had removed their belongings a German shell crashed on the house and destroyed it. King Albert bestowed on Lady Dorothie Belgium’s highest military decoration, the Order of Leopold. She was also mentioned in a French brigade order for “ giving to all almost daily the finest example of contempt of danger and devotion to duty.” The official account of the present award states that Lady Dorothie “ attended the wounded for over a year with marked devotion to duty and contempt of danger.”

Lady Dorothie Feilding, accompanied by her father, Col. The Earl of Denbigh, was decorated by the King with the Military Medal at Windsor Castle on Wednesday last, and had the honour of lunching afterwards with their Majesties.

The Military Medal is one recently instituted by the King solely for acts of bravery in the field under fire and has as its sole inscription on the back of the medal “ For bravery in the field.”

Lady Dorothie is the first British woman to receive the decoration. She returned to her work with the Munro Ambulance Corps in Belgium yesterday (Friday).

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Capt P W Nickalls, Northants Yeomanry, has been gazetted temporary major.

Sergt Harry Beers, 1st King’s (Liverpool) Regt. reported missing on August 8th, has written to state that he is a prisoner of war at Dulmen, Germany. Sergt Beers is an old St Oswald’s boy (New Bilton).

Mrs T Douglas, 87 Cambridge Street, has received news that her eldest son, Pte Frank Belcher, is lying at St Pat’s Hospital, Malta, with malaria fever, contracted in Salonika. He joined the colours on September 2nd, 1914, and after going through several engagements in France was drafted out to Salonika in October, 1915. He is now on the high road to recovery.

A FIGHTING FAMILY.—Few families have a better war record than that of Mr and Mrs Dunkley, of l5 Chester Street, Rugby. There are five sons in the Army, including two who have been reported missing for some time past. William Albert, the eldest, is in the King’s Royal Rifles, and he has a son serving with him at Salonica. Walter Ernest has served his time with the Royal Warwicks, and has just re-joined the Army from Lutterworth, having been drafted into a different regiment. Harry, who joined the Royal Warwicks, has been missing since July 30th ; and Percy John, of the Lancashire Fusiliers, has been missing since July 25th. The fifth son, Arthur Rowland, is serving with the Labour Battalion. A sixth member of the same family (Alfred Thos Dunkley) has been discharged from the Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry on medical grounds, and is now employed in a controlled factory. Mrs Dunkley has two brothers serving in France, and two of her nephews are in the Army.

LOCAL CASUALTIES.

Walter Wilkins, 2nd Battalion Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry, who worked in the Illumination Department at the B.T.H, and was a member of the B.T.H hockey team, has been killed in action. He was only married a few months before the War broke out.

We learn that Transport Sergt F R Spencer, Royal Warwicks, was wounded on August 27th by a bullet which passed through his right leg. By a strange coincidence he was first attended when brought in by his own medical attendant, who is now at the front. Sergt Spencer is now in hospital at Lincoln, going on well. He had been out in France about 18 months.

ACCIDENT TO PTE J H HOLMES.

Pte J H Holmes, a member of the Rugby Advertiser staff, who joined the R.A.M.C in October last, has met with an accident in France, as a result of which he has broken his left leg in two places below the knee. In a letter to a friend he says : “ After spending a few days in three different hospitals in France, I arrived in Southampton from Boulogne on Friday. The thing which struck me most was the excellent arrangements for transporting the wounded. The hospitals, too, contain the most up-to-date instruments. The hospital I am in is a fine place, food and attention being perfect.”

TWO MORE ST MATTHEW’S OLD BOYS KILLED.

News has just come to hand that Lance-Corpl A Lewis, of the 5th Oxford and Bucks L.I. has been killed in action. He was the second son of P.C Lewis, of Rugby, and an old scholar of St Matthew’s School, where he was popular and much liked. Lance-Corpl Lewis joined the Army early in the war, and was several times wounded, on one occasion his life being saved by a cigarette case in his breast pocket, which deflected the bullet.

Pte W Goffin, of the 5th Oxford and Bucks L.I, another St Matthew’s old boy, whose home is at 35 Pennington Street, who was posted as missing after the battle, of Loos last year, is now reported as killed. Pte W Goffin’s brother, Pte H J Goffin, 7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment, has just been wounded for the second time. No less than sixteen near relatives in the Goffin family are now on active service.

STRETTON-ON-DUNSMORE.

NEWS has been received from the War Office that Lance-Corpl John Nicholas, of the Warwickshire Yeomanry, son of Mr and Mrs J Nicholas, Lime Kiln Farm, Stretton-on-Dunsmore. was wounded in action in Egypt on August 5th. His many friends will he pleased to hear his wound is not serious, the bullet having passed through the muscle of his left leg, and he is now progressing favourably in hospital at Romani. He joined at the commencement of the War, and has been in Egypt twelve months. His two youngest brothers, of the Royal Fusiliers, are also serving in France, thus making a total of three sons out of four serving with his Majesty’s Forces.

A DYING SOLDIER’S REGRET.—Our readers will doubtless remember that a few months ago a soldier billeted in the town was fined for being drunk and disorderly and disturbing an open air service of the Salvation Army. News has. now reached Rugby that this man has died from wounds. While he was being carried off the field he asked any member of the stretcher party if they visited Rugby to call at the Salvation Army Citadel and express his regret for the occurrence. The corporal of the stretcher party has since been wounded and sent to England, and on Sunday afternoon he called at the Citadel and gave the dying soldier’s message to the officer in charge.

DEATHS.

MASON.—On Sept. 1st, died of wounds, Sergt. Arthur T. Mason, Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry.
“ Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
—From his devoted and sorrowing wife.

WILKINS.—Killed in action on August 24th, Walter Wilkins, 2nd Oxford & Bucks L.I.

RUGBY PRISONERS OF WAR FUND.

SUCCESSFUL FLAG DAY.

The effort on Saturday on behalf of the fund to provide comforts for prisoners of war from Rugby and district was in all respects a great and gratifying success. Following to many Flag days for deserving objects, it may have been assumed that the public were getting rather tired of these appeals ; but the plight of prisoners captured by the Germans and incarcerated in detention camps is such that the well-organised scheme to provide them with regular supplies of comforts, such as that undertaken by the local committee, must commend itself to everybody. Certain it is that the endeavour to raise a substantial sum of money to send weekly parcels to prisoners from this locality met with very enthusiastic support. All previous records were easily broken, and the sale of flags, supplemented by donations, has resulted in approximately £500 being raised. The sale of flags in the town and village produced £211 14s 11d. It will be remembered that for the Alexandra Rose Day about £140 was raised, and this was the highest amount brought in before Saturday by “ flag day ” collections in Rugby.

Anticipating a large sale of flags, the committee secured no fewer than 35,000 for disposal in Rugby and the surrounding villages. The flags were specially made for this effort. On one side were the letters in white on blue ground, “ Rugby Prisoners of War Fund,” and on the reverse side was a picture representing three British soldiers behind a barbed wire barricade, and guarded by Germans, with the word’s, “ Help our men,” printed at the foot.

The Benn Buildings, kindly lent by the Urban District Council, formed the centre of operations, and about 300 people helped in the collection. Some of the flag sellers were astir quite early in the morning, and towards mid-day there seemed a likelihood of the supply of flags giving out, and accordingly small Union Jacks were procured and stamped with the green seal familiar to local shopkeepers ; but by carefully regulating the sales throughout the town it was not found necessary to utilise a great number of these.

Another popular feature was the sale of sprays of lavender, of which between 7,000 and 8,000 were distributed. This idea originated with Mrs Bernard Hopps, of Thurlaston, and so great was the demand that extra supplies were needed. These were provided from the gardens of Mrs Hopps, Mr W Fiint, Mrs Blagden, Mrs Dickinson, Mm Eckersley, and others.

During the day Mr W Flint, the chairman of the committee, drove round the town and through the district in his car with Mr J R Barker, the energetic secretary, and visited the various depots which had been established.

On Sunday evening a special concert in aid of the Prisoners of War Fund was given at the Empire, the promoter being Mr B Morris, the proprietor. Admission was by silver collection, taken by Mrs Cosford and Miss Kimber. Miss Phyllis Morris and the artistes at the Empire gave their services, and a special film was shown. The proceeds of this concert amounted to just under £10.

The whole of the arrangements were carried out by the Hon Secretary, Mr J Reginald Barker, who received considerable assistance in the clerical work from Miss C M Judd.

Mr Barker made full use of the local newspapers in his publicity arrangements, and took advantage of every opportunity to make the cause of the prisoners of war understood and realised by everyone, in Rugby and the surrounding villages ; and this, no doubt, helped largely to bring about such a satisfactory result.

LIGHTING OFFENCES.

Alfred G Cox, shop manager, Poplar Grove, Rugby ; Ada Teague, 13 Park Road, Rugby ; George A Towers, newsagent, 120 Cambridge Street, Rugby ; Thos Norcross, draughtsman, Lodge Road, Rugby ; and John Henry Lines, Queen’s Head Inn, West Street, Rugby, were summoned for not obscuring lights as required by the Lighting Order.

Mrs Lines appeared for her husband, who was unwell, and said there was only a small light burning for a few minutes while she opened the window to let in some fresh air.—P.S Percival said at 11.15 he saw a bright light shining from the Queen’s Head. The blinds were not drawn, but there was a shade on the wrong side of the light. When he knocked at the door the light went out, but no one answered.—Mrs Lines said the reason she did not answer the door was that she thought it was a drunken soldier, against whom she had previously locked the door.—Fined £1.

A G Cox was summoned in respect of a light at the Co-operative Society’s Furniture Stores. He admitted the offence.—P.S Percival said he saw a bright light shining through the window of the furniture shop.—Defendant said he went in at midnight for the purpose of stock-taking, and switched on the light without thinking to first draw down the blind.—Fined £1.

Mr Towers said the light was showing accidentally.—P.C Lovell said he saw a bright light shining from the bedroom. Defendant’s attention was drawn to it, and he said he was sorry it had occurred. He did all he could to comply with the regulations. Mr Towers said the window was thrown up and the blind was blown outwards by the wind.—Fined £1.

T Norcross also admitted the offence.—P.C Elkington said at 10.35 p.m he saw a bright incandescent light shining from the bedroom window on to the houses opposite. The blind was not drawn.—Defendant said he had only been in the house a week, and the blinds had not been fixed. That was the first time he had used the gas, and that was only for a minute, because he had no candle in the room.—Fined £1.

Mr W Davis, solicitor, Rugby, appeared for Mrs Teague, and pleaded guilty.—P.C Elkington stated that he saw a bright light shining from the back of Mrs Teague’s house. There were two naked lights down-stairs and one upstairs. No blinds were drawn.—Mr Davis stated that Mrs Teague, who took in boarders, had taken down the blinds that night to wash them, and had retired to bed. One of the boarders subsequently turned on the light, not knowing that the blinds had been taken down.—Fined £1.

POINTS FOR FARMERS.—The War Agricultural Committee have received official information of interest to farmers in the district on the following points :— Sulphate of ammonia can be bought during August and September for 15s per cwt nett cash on condition that it is removed from the seller’s works before September 30th. After that the price will be raised to 15s 6d per cwt. Labour Exchanges are still authorised to deal with applications for soldiers to assist with the harvest.

THE PARISH CHURCH CLOCK.—For the present the church clock will not strike the hours and quarters. In view of air raids, all clocks have to be silent at night, and the churchwardens found it too expensive for the strike to be detached every evening and connected again next morning.

Henton, Cecil. Died 9th Sep 1916

Cecil Henton was born in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, and his birth was registered there in the second quarter of 1896. He was the son of Edward George Henton and his wife, Eleanor. Cecil and his parents moved to Rugby in about 1900 where another son and then four daughters would be born. In 1901 the family was living at 6 Railway Villas, Railway Terrace, Rugby and Cecil’s father was a ‘Goods Agent, Railway’.

In 1911, Cecil when was 15, he was still living with his parents, but they were now at 50 Newbold Road, Rugby. He was already working as a Railway Clerk, as was his father. The family would later move to 235 Railway Terrace, Rugby, which address was noted in the military records.

Cecil enlisted at Southam as a Private, No.16787, in the 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment. With only the minimum details on his Medal Card and no surviving Service Record, it is difficult to reconstruct Cecil’s service history. His service number can be compared to similar numbers and it seems likely that he joined up in about December 1915. Several men had joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment from Rugby in November, one of whom had the slightly earlier number 15720.

The 15th Battalion (2nd Birmingham) Royal Warwickshire Regiment had been formed in Birmingham by the Lord Mayor and a local Committee in September 1914. The Battalion moved to Sutton Coalfield and then in June 1915 to Wensleydale to join the 95th Brigade of the 32nd Division and later moved to Salisbury Plain.

On 21 November 1915 the Battalion mobilised for war and landed at Boulogne, and on 14 January 1916 transferred to 13th Brigade in the 5th Division. At this date Cecil was probably still under training. In March 1916, the Division took over a section of front line near Arras, between St Laurent Blangy and the southern edge of Vimy Ridge. When the offensive opened on the Somme on 1 July 1916, the 5th Division was enjoying a period of rest and re-fit and was in GHQ Reserve. However, this restful time was not destined to last and in July 1916 they moved some 50 miles south to reinforce the Somme.

The 5th Division was involved in the attacks on High Wood, which had begun on 14 July and went on until mid-September. Then from 3 to 6 September 1916, the 5th Division was involved in the Battle of Guillemont, a village to the south of Delville Wood, where here was fierce fighting and many casualties.

It seems probable that Cecil was wounded during one of these battles prior to 9 September 1916, and he was evacuated to the British Military Hospital No. 2 at Quai d’ Escale, Le Havre.

During the First World War, Le Havre was the No.1 Base and by the end of May 1917, contained three general and two stationary hospitals, and four convalescent depots. Part of the No.2 Hospital was built above the station on the Quai d’Escale, and another section was in the Casino Lechin, still in all its pre-war grandeur!

The French records note that Cecil ‘died of wounds’ at three o’clock in the evening, on 9 September 1916. He was buried in the nearby Ste. Marie Cemetery, Le Harve, in Grave Reference: Div.3. F.4.   His headstone was later inscribed with the words ‘Thy will be done’.

The Ste. Marie Cemetery is one of the town cemeteries, but it is actually situated in the commune of Graville-St. Honorine, overlooking Le Havre from the north. The first Commonwealth burials took place in Division 14 of Ste Marie Cemetery in mid August 1914. Burials in Divisions 19, 3, 62 and 64 followed successively.

Cecil was awarded the British War and Victory medals, he would have arrived in France too late to receive the 1915 Star.

His father received £3-13-9d on 22 December 1916, and then a £3-0-0 ‘gratuity’ on 6 October 1919.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

This article on Cecil Henton was researched and written for a Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the Rugby Family History Group, September 2016.

Green, Frederick John. Died 7th Sep 1916

Frederick John Green was born in 1890 at Headington, Oxford, the oldest of five children of Frederick Green (b 1857 in Oxford) and Louisa Greenfield Green, née Palmer (b 1866, Bowerchalke, Wilts and died 1916 in New Bilton), his wife. Frederick sen. was an iron foundry worker who after several moves around the country, was in 1911 residing at 4, Gladstone Street, New Bilton.

Frederick John Green was educated at St Matthews School, Rugby, and followed his father into the foundry business. He was shown in the 1911 census returns as residing with his father and employed as a bore maker in an iron foundry. However by the the time he joined the army he was working with the Humber Motor Company in Coventry.

Frederick John Green enlisted on 2nd September 1914 in the 12th Battalion, Kings Royal Rifle Corps as a rifleman, regimental no. R/1855, and was sent to France on 23 July 1915. During the 1916 Battles of the Somme, he was sent to the No.21 Casualty Clearing Station at La Neuville where he died of his wounds on 7 September 1916. He was buried at the nearby La Neuville British Cemetery where his grave is one of 866 that is maintained by the CWGC. A single man, he was survived by his father and four siblings.

In addition to being remembered on the Memorial Gates, Whitehall Road, Rugby, he also features on the New Bilton War Memorial.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

Lee, Charles Robert. Died 6th Sep 1916

Charles Robert Lee was born in 1879 in Rugby and was baptised 20th Feb 1880 at St Andrews Church Rugby. He was the son of Mary Ann Lee (nee) Batchelor who was born in Rugby in 1859 and Henry Lee who was born 1857 in Derby and died circa 1880.

In 1881 he lived at 34 Railway Terrace Rugby, the home of his grandparents John Batchelor and Sarah Jane Batchelor (nee Brooks). Also at this address were his mother Mary Ann Lee and his brother Thomas Henry (who was born in 1877 in Derby), together with six of Mary Ann’s siblings.

In 1891 he lived at 18 Gas Street together with his mother Mary Ann who had now remarried James Barnett, a bricklayers labourer. His brother Thomas was living there too, together with two sons of James Barnett aged 3 and 3 months and Mary Ann.

Charles enlisted in the Coldstream Guards and served as Private No 876 in the 5th Battalion in the South Africa War. He served at the Belmont and Modder River and was wounded in eight places in his arm in the 2nd Boer War at Magersfontein on 11th Feb 1899. Following this he was partially disabled and received a pension.

In 1901 His mother Mary Ann was widowed again and a laundress. They lived at 11 Gas Street Rugby together with his brother Thomas (a brickmaker’s labourer and three step brothers, James Barnett born 1889, Frances Barnett born 1894 and Samuel Barnett born 1895. They had a lodger too, Walter Sansom born 1880 in Thornton Heath Surrey, a groom. Charles’ mother Mary Ann married Walter Sansom later that year.

On 13th August 1904 Charles married Elsie Rose Maltby, born in Daventry in 1882 and died in Rugby in 1944. The marriage was at St Andrews Church Rugby. They went on to have five children: Henry Thomas Lee born 1905, Winifred Lee born 1907, Rose Ann Lee born 1908, Daisy Lee born 1911 and Francis James Lee born 1912, all in Rugby.

He was a well known Rugby footballer and played for the Star New Bilton, Britannia, Rugby First, Northampton, Coventry and represented the Midland Counties.

He offered to rejoin his old regiment again in the First World War and served with the Coldstream Guards for eighteen months. He was admitted to the Hospital of St Cross in Rugby and died there following an operation on 6th September 1916. He is buried in Grave K279 at Clifton Road Cemetery Rugby together with his stepfather James Barnett. His stepbrother Samuel Barnett who died in the First World War on 25th September 1915.

Charles was awarded the Victory & British War Medals.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

Reynolds, Herbert. Died 5th Sep 1916

Herbert was born in Long Lawford in 1897. His father was Tom Reynolds, a Bricklayer and Emma Julia (nee Burnham). They had married in Church Lawford parish church in 30th August 1897. Herbert was the youngest of four sons. Emma died two years later in 1899, at the age of 33. Tom remarried in 1900 to Maria Bagnall. Together they had three more children, two girls and then another boy.

In 1901 the family were living in Campbell Street, New Bilton. By 1911 they had moved to 18 Dunchurch Road. Tom was a Builder/Bricklayer working on his own account and 14 year old Herbert was an office boy.

Herbert joined the Rifle Brigade, (number S/4594) and landed in France on 21st July 1915. If he is the H Reynolds mentioned as a member of the Wesleyan Sunday School, he volunteered in August 1914.

On 16th October 1915, the Rugby Advertiser printed a letter from Corporal Herbert Reynolds:

THE BRITISH ADVANCE.
GRAPHICALLY DESCRIBED BY A RUGBY SOLDIER.

Corpl Herbert Reynolds, of the Rifle Brigade, son of Mr T Reynolds, of Dunchurch Road, Rugby, in a letter to Mr J W Faulkner, captain of the 2nd Rugby Company of the Boys’ Brigade—in which the writer was formerly Colour-Sergeant—gives a realistic account of the recent capture of German trenches by the British. He says :—

“ On Friday night we went into the assembly trenches, 100 yards behind the fire trench, and lay there all the night. It rained hard all night, so it was a bit uncomfortable crawling around in the mud. At about four o’clock the ‘ fun ’ started. We had to keep our heads pretty low to escape the shells. At six o’clock it really began, The earth trembled and shook, and up went a mine and half of the enemy trench ! My word, it did shift some earth ! Immediately the bombardment started. It was hell itself—one continual burst of high explosives and shrapnel. Then we threw out a smoke screen, and the “ Scotties ” and the Indians charged, capturing the trenches easily. Next our turn came to go over. We lined the fire trench and watched our Captain for the order. He jumped up, waved his stick, ‘Come on,’ he said, and as one man we got over the parapet to face a perfect hell of rifle, machine-gun, and shrapnel fire. At the foot of our barbed wire we lay down in extended order and waited for the next advance. Up and on again ! Down again ! The fire is terrible and we must advance by short 15 yards rushes. The German trench is about 300 yards distant. When we get within about 30 yards we crawl, and then finish up with a rush, and into the trench.

“It is in the hands of our troops, but all the time we are subjected to a terrible enfilade fire. We held the trench for about eight hours, but we could not get our bombs across, so had to give ground before their bombing from the flanks. Men were being blown to pieces, and we were powerless. We hung on to the last and then got the order to retire. You cannot possibly imagine what the shell fire was like, but, believe me, when once you’ve seen in it, well, you are not keen to go again for a bit. The return journey was worse than the outward one, and how I came back whole I don’t know. Just outside the enemy’s trench a piece of shell caught me in the back and ripped a hole in my trousers and pants. It knocked me flying, but it only bruised me a bit. We came back all right though, and lined the support trenches. Then it rained in torrents and we got wet through to the skin. When the news came that we were to go out that night, you can bet we were thankful. The communication trench was knee-deep in water, but we did not mind that so long as every sight of that terrible scene of carnage was left behind.”

Herbert was reported “Killed in Action” on 5th September 1916. His name is listed on the Thiepval Memorial. He is also remembered on the BTH Memorial and on the family grave in Clifton Road Cemetery.

Reynolds memorial, Clifton Road Cemetry

Herbert’s brother Frank, three years older, died in 1915 and another brother John was to die in November 1916. Two cousins also died in the war.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

Whiteman, Thomas. Died 3rd Sep 1916

Thomas was born in Bracknell, Berkshire, in 1889, son of Thomas and his wife Emma nee Martin, who were married in Reading in 1887.   He had three sisters and three brothers, Emma b 1888 in Reading, Louise Emily b 1889 in Bracknell, Dorothy b 1894 in Maidenhead, George Amos b1897 in Cholsbury, Bucks, Henry Martin b 1900 in Berkhamstead Herts and Stanley Charles b in Rugby in 1893.

Thomas senior was a domestic gardener, but travelled from place to place over the years, perhaps gaining experience and seniority en route.   He came to Rugby between 1900 and 1903, and in 1901 was living in Main Street, Long Lawford with his family, all except Thomas junior who was staying at West Hatch, Somerset, listed as nephew of George Amos and Louisa Beatrice (nee Martin) Puddy. George was the Head Master at the National School, his wife was his Assistant and the sister of Thomas’s mother Emma. By 1911 the family was living at 16 Winfield Street in Rugby, Thomas Snr still a gardener as was his son Thomas, George and Louise were working in an electrical works.

Thomas enlisted in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment (private, no. 15720) in November 1915. It was announced in the Rugby Advertiser of 27th November that:

Recruiting has not been quite so good at Rugby during the past week, either for immediate service or under Lord Derby’s Group Scheme. The following have enlisted for immediate service with the Colours :—

Thomas was one of seven men who joined the Royal Warwicks that week.

At his death was a Lance Corporal in the 15th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment.   He was killed in action on 3 September 1916 (Solders Died in the Great War).   The 15th Battalion was raised in Birmingham in September 1914, landed at Boulogne on 21 November 1915 as part of the 32nd Division, and became part of the 13th Brigade 5th Division in January 1916.   It was resting at the start of the Battle of the Somme, but the Division soon became involved in the attacks on High Wood, which had begun on 14 July and went on until mid-September. The first British units entered the wood late on 14 July 1916, but the Germans had recovered from the British breakthrough at Bazentin earlier that day and were now manning the trench system which ran through the back of the wood. Both sides fought tenaciously to possess the wood which became an epicentre of the bloody attack and counter-attack fighting that characterised much of the Somme offensive after 14 July (wikipedia).

By 3 September 1916, the 5th Division was involved in the Battle of Guillemont, a village to the south of Delville Wood, and during the fierce fighting there were thousands of casualties on both sides. It is probable that Thomas was killed during the first day of this action aged 27.

In the December quarter of 1915, Thomas had married Annie Jones in Clun registration district, Shropshire, just before he left for the front. She received his outstanding pay of £1.14s.9d, and a £3 war gratuity. Thomas was awarded the British War and Victory medals. He is commemorated on the Thiepval memorial.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

Lee, Herbert Charles. Died 3rd Sep 1916

Herbert Charles Lee’s birth was registered in Rugby between Jul and Sept 1891 Vol 6d page 550.

His parents were Thomas or Tom Lee born Yelvertoft about 1853 and Elizabeth nee Pinder born about 1855 Belmesthorpe,  Rutland they married in 1877 in Rugby and by 1881 they were living in New Street near the vicarage in New Bilton. Thomas was a railway Fireman and they had 1 child Albert age 1, other relatives including boarders were also living with them. Interestingly Caroline age 2 and born 1879 is not mentioned in this census she is living 19 Lawford Road Rugby with grandparents Thomas and Ann Pinder.

Some 10 years later in 1891 Census the family were living at 114 Oxford Street Rugby and had 6 children Caroline born 1879 New Bilton,   Albert born 1881 New Bilton,   Ethel aged 6 born Rugby, Harold age 4 born Rugby, Ernest age 2 born Rugby and Arthur T age 1 month born Rugby.

Herbert Charles Lee was baptised at St. Andrews Church Rugby on Wednesday 5th May 1897, his brother Leonard and his sister Amy were also baptised on the same day, it tells us that the family were living at Abbey Street Rugby and his father Thomas Lee was a driver this we assume to be a train driver on the railway, his mother was Elizabeth Lee. Amy Harriet Wright was also baptised on the same day. The Reverend W. E. Philpotts assistant curate carried out the service.

Interestingly when his sister Ivy May Lee was baptised on 11th September 1896 at St.Andrews Church Rugby it said that Ivy’s parents were Tom and Elizabeth Lee and in the column of trade or profession of father the words single women is crossed out and the word “widow” is written.

There is no record for Thomas or Tom Lees death in Rugby or in Warwickshire just prior to 1896, and with Thomas Lee being common name in England we have no way of confirming date of death.

Some 4 years later Herbert age 9 appears on the 1901 UK Census living 126 Abbey Street Rugby together with his widowed mother Elizabeth Lee age 46 a charwomen and 5 siblings:-   Harold Lee age 14 an errand boy, Ethel Lee age 16 laundry maid, Amy Lee age 7, Leonard Lee age 5 and Ivy Lee age 4 + 2 boarders Morris Silvaman age 20 born Romania and a tailor journeyman, and Charles Ludlow age 21 born Warwick who is an engine cleaner.

1911 census Herbert Charles Lee age 19 and Iron Moulder out of work living 94 Winfield Street Rugby with mother Elizabeth Lee age 56 a widow, brother Arthur Thomas Lee age 20 locomotive engine cleaner, sister Amy Lee age 17 laundress, brother Leonard Lee age 15 locomotive engine cleaner, and sister Ivy May Lee age 14 a mica cutter in Electrical Engineers, all these family were living with married sister Caroline Jones nee Lee age 32 and her husband Charles Jones age 35 and their 5 children living in 6 rooms.

Herbert Lee joined the 2nd Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment his regimental number was 1095 his attestation papers are missing. He arrived in France on 4th May 1915.

Private Herbert Lee died 3 September 1916 age 25 and is remembered with Honour on the Thiepval Memorial Pier 9 column 9a, 9b & 10b, and by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission he was the son of Elizabeth Lee of 24 Sandown Road Rugby.

H. Lee is on Rugby Memorial and his name sits between, C. R. Lee and W. Lee.

Herbert Lee pension/effects details Record No. 377975 registry No. 293738 he had Credits of £21.   8s. 2d. + £8. 10s. 0d, his mother Elizabeth received a total 14 payments which included payments to his siblings during 1917 totalling £29. 18s. 2d.

His mother Elizabeth death is registered 1930 Q3 Rugby age 76.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

 

2nd Sep 1916. The Recruiting Officer Asks For Information

Rugby Advertiser, 2 September, 1916.
THE RECRUITING OFFICER, RUGBY, ASKS For INFORMATION
regarding the following men, as to whether they
(a) Have joined the Army ;
(b) Are excepted from the provisions of the Military Service Acts, 1916 ;
(c) Are in possession of a definite certificate or badge exempting them from liability for Military Service
(d) Are in a reserved occupation ;
(e) Have moved to another district ;
or any other information concerning them.
The above information is required to complete records in Recruiting Offices, and any communication will be treated in strict confidence.

LIST OF MEN FROM THE RUGBY SUB-AREA UNDER THE FIRST MILITARY SERVICE ACT. 1916.
The following are their last-known addresses :-
O. PICKLES, Railway Hotel, Rugby, age 28.
F. SMITH, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 29.
W. HEWITT, “ Zotha House,” Park Road, Rugby, age 30.
J. W. WALKER, 37 Wood Street, Rugby, age 30.
J. ROSS, Spring Hill, Rugby, age 18.
O. JACKSON, White Lion, Warwick Street, Rugby, age 38.
H. FRANCIS [or HEENEY], 186 Murray Road, Rugby, age 39.
T. W. ELLERTON, Bridget Street, New Bilton, age 24.
A. E. CAPEWELL, Wharf Farm, Hillmorton, age 34.
G. COOPER, Radford, age 39.
W. FIELD, Mount Pleasant, Stockton, age 27.
J. H. CARTER, 16 Oxford Street, Rugby, age 29, married.
J. TOMSON, 8 Abbey Street, Rugby, age 31, married.
A. H. WEST, Bishops Itchington, age 31, married.
A. THOROGOOD, “ Alpina,” Banbury Road, Southam, aged 32, married.
W. POMFRET, 49 James Street, Rugby, age 21, married.
A. A. BALL, Whitnash, aged 38, married.
W. CALLODENE, Licensed Hawker, Dodson’s Field, Rugby, age 40, married.
F. C. BATES, Station Road. Rugby, age 40, Rugby, married.
J. E. CRAMP, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 24, married.
J. W. BOSTON, 40 Railway Terrace, Rugby, age 40, married.
WM GEORGE TRUSSLER, 14 Sheep Street, Rugby, age 31, married.
G. THOMAS, 2 Elborow Street, Rugby, age 34, single.
W. H. BRERETON, 11 Rowland Street, Rugby, age 25, single.
P. COWLEY, 91 Abbey Street, Rugby, age 22, married.
J. W. WILLIAMS, 21 Worcester Street, Rugby, age 22, married.
T. BOYLES, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 26, married.
P. JOHNSON, Long Itchington, age 28, single.
W. T. HARREN, Butlers Marston, Kineton, age 24, married.
JOHN FITZSIMMONS, 121 Oxford Street, Rugby, age 32, married.
A. ARTHUR, 51 Manor Road, Rugby, age 37, married.
A. K. FRAZER, 3 Castle Street, Rugby, age 36, married.
H. SMITH. 36 Poplar Grove, Rugby, age 37, married.
H. WILSON, 50 King Edward Road, Rugby, age 28, married.

LIST OF MEN FROM THE RUGBY SUB-AREA UNDER THE GROUP SYSTEM.
The following are their last-known addresses :-
H. E. TREECE, 17 Boughton Road, Brownsover, age 26, married.
WILLIAM HENRY WALKER, Westhorpe, Willoughby, age 25, single.

It must be clearly understood that Lists of Men who have failed to report themselves are compiled after every endeavour has been made to trace them, both by the Military Authorities and the Police, who furnish a written report on each individual case.
Under these circumstances any mistakes made are owing to the default either of the employers or men concerned or their relatives, who have failed to notify the change of address as required by the National Registration Act.

F. F. JOHNSTONE, Lieut.-Colonel, Recruiting Officer.
2nd September, 1916.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Sergt-Major James Ward, late of the Old Manor House, Kilsby, serving in the Ammunition Column Brigade, Canadian Artillery, who recently was awarded the D.C.M, has now been promoted to a lieutenancy in the Trench Mortar Battery of a Canadian Division.

LOCAL CASUALTIES.

Pte H Perrin, elder son of Mr J Perrin, Victor’s Street, Rugby, who was invalided to England on June 28th suffering from influenza and acute rheumatism, his numerous friends will be pleased to learn that a letter has been received from Sister Chell, of Seafield Hospital, Blackpool, stating that he is now well on the way to recovery. Bandsman G A Walden, of the Worcester Pioneers, whose parents reside at 20 Campbell Street, New Bilton, is in hospital in France suffering from shrapnel wounds ; but letters from two officers of the company to which Walden belongs state that he is progressing favourably.

Second-Lieut Eric P St George Cartwright, Leinster Regiment (Machine Gun Section), youngest son of Mr Arthur Cartwright, late H.M Inspector of Schools for Northamptonshire District, was killed on August 13th. He was educated at Bilton Grange, Rugby, and at Charterhouse, where he was a member of the O.T.C.

Pte John Waring, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, was killed in action on July 27th. The soldier, who was aged 28, and single, was the son of Mr James Waring, of Bubbenhall. For many years he was engaged under the Warwickshire County Council in superintending road repair work.

B.T.H. MEN KILLED.

Pte C Cashmore, of the Oxford and Bucks L.I, reported missing since September 25th last year, is now regarded by the Military Authorities as having been killed on or about that date. He formerly worked in the foundry at the B.T.H.

NEWBOLD-ON-AVON.

WOUNDED.—Mrs H Smith, of Newbold. was notified on Saturday last that her husband, Corpl Horace Smith, of the Royal Engineers, had been wounded in the back and arm. Corpl Smith enlisted soon after the war commenced. He is in hospital in France, and is progressing favourably.

BRETFORD.

CORPL WELLS WOUNDED AGAIN.—Mr George Wells has been notified that his son, Corpl F A Wells, has been wounded again. He belongs to the Royal Warwicks (T.F), and had been in France again for some time, having recovered from his previous wounds. Another brother, Harvey Wells, has been suffering from shell shock ; whilst another is at the front. Much sympathy is felt for Mr and Mrs Wells.

A BRAVE FELLOW.—Particulars have been received in the village of the bravery of the eldest son of Mr Fred White, who for many years resided at Bretford. Bert White as a boy attended Brandon School, and left there for agricultural work. He eventually emigrated to Canada, and when war broke out he returned to fight for the Old Country, He was eventually rejected because of a crooked toe. However, this did not quench his ardour, for he had the toe taken off, and is doing good work with the Royal Engineers. His father and mother now reside at St George’s Road, Coventry. The people of Bretford and the teachers and scholars of his old school feel proud of him.

DUNCHURCH.

CASUALTIES.—Second-Lieut J D Barnwell, of the R.W.R, second son of Mr W D Barnwell, is now seriously ill with blood poisoning, and Mrs Barnwell is still in France with him.—Mr and Mrs Bull, Mill Street, have received intimation that their son in the 3rd Dragoon Guards has been wounded ; and Mrs Richardson, Tail End, has received similar news in regard to Pte R Richardson, K.R.R. Pte E Walton, of Thurlaston, same regiment, has also been wounded.

BRINKLOW.

REFUGEES.-A meeting of the subscribers to the Refugees’ Fund was held in the Church Room on Friday evening in last week. The Rev G A Dawson presided, and Mr W E Brown presented the audited accounts, showing a balance in hand of £1 14s. It was also explained that the family had left the village, and the man had been at work for some time ; and was, therefore, independent of any further support from the subscribers. The balance in hand (£1 14s) was unanimously voted to the Prisoners of War Fund. A very hearty vote of thanks was accorded to Mr Brown for the admirable manner the arrangements in connection with their guests had been carried out. In response, Mr Brown expressed his readiness to further any good cause during this time of national stress.

AN UNCENSORED LETTER FROM A PRISONER OF WAR.

A letter has this week been received by Mr. J. Reginald Barker, Hon, Secretary of the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee, from Bandsman C. Rowe, 1st Royal Welsh Fusiliers, a British prisoner of war, who has had the good fortune to be sent from Germany to Switzerland. Bandsman Rowe has been receiving help for some months from the Rugby Fund, and his letter is additional proof that the parcels of food sent every week to the local men who are war prisoners in Germany do actually reach them. It also emphasises the fact that unless these parcels are continued the men will undoubtedly starve. It therefore, hoped that the special effort the committee is making to raise funds to ensure the continuance of the weekly parcels of food and clothing will meet with a very generous response, that everyone in Rugby and the surrounding villages will give all they can possibly spare on Saturday next, September 2nd. Donations toward the Fund should be sent to Mr. Barker at 9 Regent Street, and same will be gladly acknowledged.

LEYSIN, SWITZERLAND.

August 14th, 1916.

DEAR SIR,—Just a line to ask you to discontinue any parcels to Germany, as you will see by the above address that I have had the splendid luck to get into a civilised country. I received your parcels during my stay in Germany, and beg to tender my sincere thanks to your subscribers and Committee for the good they are doing.

No one at home can believe the great appreciation our boys in Germany have towards the kind people who send the parcels. They are very anxious to know whether the parcels will always continue, as otherwise THEY WON’T COME OUT OF GERMANY ALIVE.

I have been in Germany twenty-one months, and endured the terrible hardships of the first six or eight months when no packets came through.

Only just lately, at Mannheim, the parcels were delayed on account of shifting from different camps, and consequently nineteen men out of my room were in HOSPITAL ON ACCOUNT OF EATING THE GERMAN FOOD. Most of them were wounded and out of Cologne Hospital. I will be only too pleased to answer any enquiries regarding the parcels, &c.

With my sincere thanks, I am, Sir,
Yours sincerely,
C. ROWE.

Mr. J. Reginald Barker,
Hon. Secretary,
Prisoners of War Help Committee,
9 Regent Street, Rugby.

ACHIEVEMENTS by the WARWICKS
HOW THEY CAPTURED A STRONG POSITION AND 600 PRISONERS.

During July and August, the Warwickshire Territorials were in the thick of the fighting in France, and had a very hard time of it, and, that is to be regretted, had many casualties ; but they covered themselves with glory. Their brave deeds have been eulogized in unqualified turns by the Special Press Correspondents, who have been privileged to visit the area in which the fighting has been going on. These citizen soldiers have been drawn from Birmingham and all parts of the county of Warwick, and have left all kinds of peaceful occupations to voluntarily undertake the training necessary to fit them for such an arduous campaign. The unanimous verdict of all the correspondents is to the effect that now that fighting is their trade, our Warwickshire lads are more than a match the best professional soldiers Germany can put up against them.

Early in July they formed part of the attacking force upon Anere, a little later they were in at capture of Ovillers-la-Boiselle, and afterwards led the great push towards Thiepval. They meritoriously carried out the work allotted to them, and captured one of the Germans’ strongest points, which had hitherto successfully resisted our attacks ; and they captured 500 prisoners, which one correspondent says was the big bag of the week.

In this particular operation the Warwicks were ordered to attack at a certain time, and after the usual artillery preparation, which was violently returned by the Germans, who used gas and tear shells, they went forward with an irresistible rush—in some places having to traverse 200 or 300 yards of open ground swept by machine guns before they could come to grips with Fritz. But their own machine guns and snipers, meanwhile, played great havoc among the defenders, and so terrific was the onslaught of the Warwickshire men that many machine gun crews (who, by the way, are among the bravest of German soldiers, and most stubborn) surrendered with a freedom which had never been observed before. But, nevertheless, there were several instances of typical Hun treachery after the hoisting of white flags—but with the inevitable result to the treacherous ones.

When the Warwicks had cleared the Germans from their trenches and dug-outs, and had a little time to look round, they discovered in the dug-outs and luxuriously equipped funk holes no lack of evidence in the way of half-consumed meals and luxuries, also cigars and cigarettes which had been partly smoked, that the Germans had no idea of being “ outed ” in such a hurry.

In one dug-out there was in the midst of all the horror a comic episode, like that of a clown in tragedy. A curtain divided the dug-outs, and a Warwickshire man thrust his bayonet through it. Suddenly the curtain was drawn on one side and German soldier, yawning loudly and rubbing his eyes with the knuckles of one hand, stood there, as though to say, “ What’s up?” He had slept heavily through the bombardment and attack, and now, when he saw the English soldiers facing him believed he was dreaming. So the Warwicks took 400 yards of trenches along a front of 600 yards, and thrust the wedge closer to Thiepval.

The men were splendidly led, and the officers-among whom there were, unfortunately, many casualties—had nothing but praise for the fighting qualities of the rank and file.

Both the courage and skill of these Warwickshire troops (who have received official congratulations from Headquarters and most whole-hearted thanks from the Anzac troops fighting on their right) saved them from heavy casualties. Since then the Wilts and Gloucesters have had a similar opportunity, of distinguishing themselves and they rose to the occasion with equal success.

And these men are typical of our citizen army

COUNTY TRIBUNAL PUTTING ON PRESSURE.

Realising that men are still urgently required for the Army, the County Appeals Tribunal, sitting at the Benn Buildings, Rugby, on Friday last week, intimated, through the Chairman, that they had got to put on pressure. In several cases appeals were dismissed, and in others the period of exemption was reduced.

The members of the Tribunal present were : Messrs M K Pridmore, W Johnson, jun, P G Loveitt. Messrs M E T Wratislaw and F M Burton represented the Military Authorities, and Mr J E Cox watched the proceedings in the interests of agriculture.

A MUNITIONS ORDER.

The first case was that of Wm Tisot, scrap iron and metal merchant, 7 Lawford Road, New Bilton, whose appeal had been adjourned, and respecting whom a munitions order was now made.

OPPOSITION WITHDRAWN.

The Military representatives had appealed against the granting by the local Tribunal of temporary exemption till February 1st to Francis T H Oldham, art student, The Cedars, Long Lawford ; but, in view of a recent Army order, that youths are not to be called up before attaining the age of 18 years 8 months, they withdrew their appeal.

MAKING UP FOR LOST TIME.

“ I do as much work now in a day as I used to do in a fortnight,” said Wm Frank Holloway, (36, married), stud groom, Toft House, Dunchurch. Whose exemption to October 1st to enable his employer to make other arrangements was appealed against by the Military Authorities.—Mr Wratislaw said there were two other men on Mr Rodoconachi’s farm of less than 100 acres.—Mr Holloway said, in addition to attending to the hunter stud, he helped on the farm and assisted at any job that wanted doing.—Given to September 25th, with the warning that it was very improbable that further time would be granted.

A PROBLEM FOR OLD AGE PENSIONERS.

Fredk Ernest Wm Lowe (36, married), 112 Lawford Road, New Bilton, claimed exemption on various grounds, including that of being sub-postmaster, as which he paid on Fridays 37 old age pensions.-Mr Harold Eaden pointed out the serious inconvenience it would be to these aged people to have to walk up to the General Post Office at Rugby.—The Chairman : Which concerns them most—the Germans coming or having to go a few yards extra to get their pensions ? In his statement, Mr Lowe said it would mean absolute ruin to him to join the Army, as he would have to sell everything at a sacrifice.-Given till September 25th, the Chairman remarking that men were very urgently needed, and they had got to put on pressure.

DATE AGREED UPON.

Being only passed for Labour A, John Harry Clowes, stationary engine driver for Messrs Parnell & Son, 4 Chester Street, Rugby, asked for the renewal of a certificate of exemption granted by the local Tribunal.-Mr Eadon said the firm would be content with exemption till October 1st, and this date was agreed upon.

A MATTER OF OPINION.

As William Leslie Morgan (24, single), dentist, 5a Regent Street, Rugby, did not, for the second time, attend personally to support his claim (although represented by Mr Eaden), Mr Wratislaw intimated that he considered the man was a shirker.—Mr Eaden : I should be sorry to say that. On the other hand, he is a very busy man.—Appellant had been passed for home garrison duty only, and asked for either a substantial period of exemption, or for the liberty to withdraw his appeal and renew it when he received his papers calling him up.—The Clerk to the Tribunal pointed out that as appellant was an unattested man, the Tribunal could not take the latter course.—Appeal dismissed.

COAL MERCHANT TO JOIN THE COLOURS.

Temporary exemption till October 1st had been given to William Fredk Perrin (30, single), haulier and coal merchant, 177 Oxford Street, Rugby ; but the Military lodged an appeal, which was upheld on their promising not to serve the papers for a month.

BADGED.

Another Military appeal was that in respect of Thos Wm Harrowing, boysman at a school boarding house, 26 Manor Road, Rugby, who had been given till September 1st to find work of national importance.—Mr Worthington said the man was now working at the B.T.H, and was badged.—The Chairman : As long as he is badged he is all right.

THE SHIFTING OF ORANGE BOXES.

Asserting that he supplied vegetable food for over three-quarters of Rugby, Mr J Craze asked to be allowed to retain his foreman, Harry Hyde (27, married), 16 York Street, whose exemption till November 1st did not meet with military approval.

Mr Craze said a man not used to the business and over military age was not able to lift orange boxes. Both his sons and another man had gone into the Army, and he should be hopelessly at sea (in case of illness) without his foreman.—The Chairman said we had got into such a position that we could not help ourselves, and he told applicant that he would have to see if two girls could shift his orange cases.

The foreman appealed on domestic grounds, he having a mother to support ; but the Chairman assured him his case was nothing like so hard as some others.—Exempted till October 25th, and the Chairman told Mr Craze they were rather stretching the point because he had such a good record as to his sons.

BROWNSOVER FARMER AND HIS SON.

Daniel Lloyd, farmer, Brownsover, had claimed temporary exemption on behalf of his son, Evan Harrison Lloyd (23, and single), but neither attended the Tribunal.—Appellant, in a written statement, said if his son did not obtain exemption he should have no alternative to selling the stock and giving up the farm.—The appeal was dismissed.

ANOTHER DENTISTRY CASE.

John Gardner Hall, dentist and manufacturer of artificial teeth, 20a High Street, Rugby, who had been granted time to complete his business contracts, &c, was also absent when his case was called on, and his appeal was likewise dismissed.

DEATHS.

HUGHES.—On August 16, 1916, Rifleman John Hughes, aged 18, son of the late Arthur William Hughes, late storekeeper of Rugby Sheds. Killed in action. Rifleman John Hughes is a cousin of Driver W. Chadburn, in France.—“ He gave his young life for his King, and country.”-From MOTHER, SISTER and BROTHER.

MESSENGER.—Killed in action on August 5, 1916, in France, Private John Thomas Messenger, of the Australian Imperial Force, son of Mr. T. T. Messenger, Barby.

SHAW.—In loving memory of Pte J. C. Shaw, of the R.W.R., second son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Shaw, of the Coventry Road, Dunchurch, who was killed in action in France on August 1, 1916 ; aged 26 years and 11 months.

“ No loved one stood beside him
To hear his last farewell ;
But we hope to meet in heaven,
And there for ever dwell.”
—From his loving MOTHER, FATHER, BROTHERS and SISTERS.

IN MEMORIAM.

LINES.—Killed in action, “ somewhere in France ,” Henry, the dearly beloved son of Mr. and Mrs. C. Lines, Napton ; aged 27 years.

“ We often sit and think of you,
And tenderly breathe your name ;
Nothing left of you to look at
But your photo in a frame.”
—Deeply mourned by his FATHER, MOTHER, BROTHER, SISTERS, and MAY.

OSBORN.—In loving remembrance of George Osborn, who died in the Dardanelles on August 30,1915.

“ I often sit and think of him,
And think of how he died ;
To think he could not say ‘ Good-bye ‘
Before he closed his eyes.”
BESSIE.