Warden, Frederick Harold Bert. Died 27th Aug 1917

Frederick Harold Bert WARDEN was born in Rugby, probably in early 1897 or very late 1896. His birth was registered in Q1, 1897 in Rugby, when he was named as Frederick Bertie H Warden. He was the son of Edward [b.c.1863, Warwick] and Kate née Morris [b.c.1864, Rugby] Warden. Their marriage was registered in Q3, 1883.

Frederick was baptised on 5 February 1897 at St. Andrew’s, Rugby, when the family were living at 18 Spring Street, Rugby.   In 1901, when he was four, his father was a newspaper reporter, and his much older sister was a dressmaker and his much older brother was a carpenter’s apprentice. The family was now living at 78 Bath Street, Rugby.

By 1911, when Frederick was 14, he was in lodgings with Mr and Mrs Gill in Cromwell Road, Rugby and working as a ‘Clerk’ in the ‘Poor Law Office’.

It is uncertain when or where he enlisted, but he was enlisted first as a Private, No.2188, in a Royal Warwickshire Regiment (RWR) possibly in a Reserve Battalion. Unusually the same number was also allocated to two other soldiers in the RWR. He was subsequently promoted to Lance Corporal, No.265369 and later served with ‘C’ Company, 1st/7th Bn. Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

The 1st/7th Battalion was raised in August 1914 in Coventry as part of the Warwickshire Brigade, South Midland Division. They landed at Le Havre on 22 March 1915, and then on 13 May 1915 were renamed the 143rd Brigade, 48th (South Midland) Division, which also included the 1st/5th and the 1st/6th RWR.

Frederick went to France on 25 June 1915, presumably joining his Battalion which was already in France. Their Division took part in various actions on the Western Front including during 1916: The Battle of Albert, the Battle of Bazentin Ridge, the Battle of Pozieres Ridge, and later the Battle of the Ancre Heights, and the Battle of the Ancre, all being parts of the Battle of the Somme.

Frederick was reported[1] as a casualty in July 1916, presumably he was wounded during the battle of the Somme. Whilst there is no Service Record for him, he obviously recovered to be in action again, possibly at Arras in 1917 and then probably in the actions of the German Retreat to the Hindenburg Line in 1917 and then in the Battle of Langemarck, one of the earlier actions of the 3rd Battle of Ypres.

The Battalion Diary[2] records that in June the 1st/7th Battalion was at Louverval, France, to the south-east of Arras.   In early July they had marched to Gomiecourt to the west, and were training at Bienvillers. By 20 July they were at Halloy and then on 22 July marched to Authieule where they entrained for St Jan-ter-Biezen, in Belgium.

Having now had about a month’s training, on the night of 30/31 July the Battalion followed the 1st/6th Bn. RWR and marched via Poperinghe, Poperinghe-Elverdinghe Road, and the Chemin Militaire, into the Corps Reserve at Camp ‘C’ in Belgium.   On 31 July they were in support of 39th Division which attacked north-east of Ypres, and from 1 to 7 August they were having easy training, mainly short route marches.

On 8 August the Battalion left ‘C’ Camp and moved to ‘Canal Bank’. By 11 August they were in the St Julien sector and subject to heavy shelling and sniping. The enemy also used quantities of ‘mustard oil gas shells’.

The Battalion then moved several times over the next few days from St Julien, to the Yser Canal Bank, back to Dambre Camp on 15 August and then back again to the Canal Bank on 16 August as reserves. On 22 August the attack on Spot Farm and Springfield started, however, the tanks which were to take on the blockhouses all became ditched. On 26 August preparations were made for C and D Companies to attack Springfield Farm. On 27 August, D Company was successful in capturing Springfield Farm and then handed over to the 8th Bn. Worcestershires. A & B Companies went by train to Poperinge and C & D Companies rejoined the Battalion at Poperinghe on 28 August.

Sometime during the various actions on 27 August 1917, Frederick was ‘Killed in Action’.

His body was either never found or not identified. He is remembered on one of the Panels 23 to 28 and 163A of the Tyne Cot Memorial. The Tyne Cot Memorial is one of four memorials to the missing in Belgian Flanders which cover the area known as the Ypres Salient. Whereas those who died before 16 August 1917 are remembered on the Menin Gate, the United Kingdom servicemen who died after that date are named on the memorial at Tyne Cot. Frederick Warden is also commemorated on the Rugby Memorial Gates in Hillmorton Road, Rugby.

On 31 August 1918, his brother and sister each received a £4-9-7d share of the money that was owed to Frederick, and they then shared his War Gratuity receiving £6-15-0d each on 1 December 1919. On 8 August 1921, his brother P E Warden applied for Frederick’s medals – the British War and Victory Medals, and in view of his early service, the 1915 Star.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

[1]       Rugby Remembers, 22 July 2017: https://rugbyremembers.wordpress.com/2016/07/22/22nd-jul-1916-helping-the-prisoners-of-war/ – with transcription from: Rugby Advertiser, 22 July 1916.

[2]       The National Archives, WWI War Diaries (France, Belgium and Germany), 1914-1920, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, 48th Division, Piece 2756: 143 Infantry Brigade, 1/7 Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment; also available on www.ancestry.co.uk.

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25th Aug 1917. Commandeering Fat Bullocks

COMMANDEERING FAT BULLOCKS.
ACTION OF THE GOVERNMENT.

It was officially announced at Leicester on Saturday that the Government were determined to proceed with their scheme of commandeering fat bullocks to cover the needs of the Army and Navy at fixed prices already announced. Auctioneers and official buyers will proceed to the farms on and after September 1st, and select all bullocks sufficiently fleshed for slaughter and have them removed to the nearest railway stations. New weigh-bridges are being constructed as rapidly as possibly for weighing the cattle. At Leicester over 1,000 head per week will be dealt with, and in less than ten weeks it is estimated that 12,000 bullocks will be slaughtered in this country. In fact, all fat stock will be cleared off at least one month before Christmas. The Amy and Navy will only take over bullocks, and all the old cows and heifers will be left for meeting the requirements of the civil population. These will be sold in the ordinary way in open competition. After the official announcement many leading agriculturists expressed the view that a very grave position had been reached, and that in consequence of the action taken there would be a meat famine in the country at the beginning of the year. Thousands of head of cattle, it is maintained, will be slaughtered in an immature condition, involving great loss.

WHY NO FURTHER SUPPLIES OF SUGAR FOR JAM MAKING.—Mr Clynes (Secretary to Food Ministry), in a written answer, says the reasons which make it impossible to allot further supplies of sugar for domestic preserving are the strict limit on the total quantity which can be imported owing to urgent demands on all available tonnage, and the necessity of making allowance for possible losses due to enemy action. While fully recognising the importance of domestic preserving of fruit, the Food Controller does not feel justified in further depleting the available stocks for this purpose.

WASTE PAPER COLLECTION IN RUGBY.
NINE TONS SENT TO THE MILLS.

The Rugby Waste Paper Committee have now been in existence three months, and during that period nine tons of waste paper have been collected and despatched to the paper mills. The proceeds are being devoted to local charities, and householders and business firms can assist these objects by saving their old newspapers, magazines, account books, letters., &c.

On receipt of a postcard the Hon Secretary, Mr J R Barker, 9 Regent Street, Rugby, will arrange for the waste to be promptly collected. In the case of account books, and private documents, the strictest secrecy is observed, and if desired can be baled in the presence of the owner.

RUGBY PRISONERS OF WAR HELP COMMITTEE.

On July 31st the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee completed their second year’s work, and very promptly has a statement of accounts been issued. The balance sheet has been audited by Mr W G Atkinson, I.A., and an abstract appears elsewhere in this issue. The year’s receipts amount to £1,707 15s 9d, as against £545 13s 10d last year.

An example of the greatly-increased demands on the Committee is shown by the fact that in the first year £381 2s 8d was spent in food, clothing, and comforts for the local men who are prisoners of war in Germany, whereas in the year just completed the cost was £917 4s 5d. As the committee have over £100 per month to find to pay for the food parcels the balance in hand on July 31st of £694 15s 10d will at the present rate of expenditure only last about six months, provided of course there are no additions to the already long list of local prisoners of war.

The full and detailed balance sheet, which gives the amounts paid to every firm, may be inspected at the Hon Secretary’s office, 9 Regent Street, Rugby, any evening.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Major W. Elliott Batt, R.F.A., has been promoted to the rank of Lt.-Colonel.

Mr A W Reading, of 1 Campbell Street, New Bilton, has received news that his son, Pte H Reading, has been seriously wounded.

Mr. & Mrs. Barnwell, 56 Manor Road, Rugby, have received information that their eldest son, Gunner A. W. Barnwell, of the Howitzer Battery, has been wounded in the chest, and is now in the hospital in England.

Pte Fred Wood, 1/6 Royal Warwickshire Regiment, son of Mr W F Wood, Market Place, has been wounded in the head by a piece of high explosive shell, which penetrated his steel helmet. Pte Wood has been in France about 2½ years.

Flight Lieut W H Peberdy, R.N, son of Mr R W Peberdy, Albert Street, who was reported missing on January 14th, is now presumed by the War Office to have been killed on that date. Lieut Peberdy, who was an OLD Laurentian, was about 35 years of age.

Second Lieut Jones, R.F.A, son of Mr John Jones, of Cosford, has gained the Military Cross for valiant services. After serving in France for fifteen months he came home to receive his commission, and immediately after his return to the front in June performed the act for which he has now been rewarded.

Sergt E R Clarke, of Rugby, formerly of the Warwickshire Howitzer Battery (and now belonging to the R.F.A), who has been in France 2½ years, has been promoted to battery quarter-master.

The D.S.O has been awarded to Capt & Bt Maj Richard Nugent O’Connor, M.C, Scottish Rifles, for conspicuous gallantry and resource. In consequence of a change of situation, a revision of plans became necessary, but owing to darkness and heavy shelling confusion arose. By his courage and promptness he quickly restored order, and organised a successful attack. He is the son of Mrs O’Connor, of Overslade Manor, and is now a Lieutenant-Colonel commanding the H.A.C.

Mr & Mrs G Salmon, of 17 Lower Hillmorton Road, have received official information concerning their son, Rifleman J R Salmon, Rifle Brigade, reported wounded and missing on the 7th October, 1916. The Army Council have been regretfully constrained to conclude that he is dead, and that his death took place on the 7th October, 1916. Rifleman Salmon had been through much severe fighting. He was in the Battle of Loos on September 25, 1915, and was fighting on the Somme front, where he met his death. Rifleman Salmon was an apprentice at Messrs Foster & Dicksee, Ltd, and joined at the commencement of the War at the age of 17. At the time of his death he was attached to the bomb throwers He was an Old Murrayian.

Rifleman F Staines (Second Officer of the Rugby Fire Brigade) has sent to Mr W F Wood a model snake and two necklets made by Turkish prisoners of war, with the request that they shall be handed over to the Rugby Prisoners of War Committee to be disposed of in aid of the fund. Rifleman Staines is one of the guards at a camp for Turkish prisoners of war, and the prisoners are allowed to make various articles which are purchased by the guards or members of the public. The snake is composed of thousands of beads and is a handsome piece of work. It is very realistic and the necklets, too, are very attractive. It has not yet been decided how to dispose of the gifts, which are on view in the window of the Hon. Secretary to the fund, Mr J R Barker, 9 Regent Street, and it has been suggested that they would make excellent prizes in a draw. The kindness of Rifleman Staines in thus thinking of all the lads in captivity is greatly appreciated.

CLIFTON-ON-DUNSMORE.

LANCE-CORPL. W WALKER, Northants Regiment, eldest son of Mr & Mrs J Walker, of High Street, Long Buckby, has died of wounds. He has been at the front for a considerable period, and was wounded once before in July, 1916. Four brothers are serving. Before the War he was in the employ of Brig-General Little at Dunsmore.

WOLSTON.

ILLNESS OF FLIGHT LIEUTENANT B HOLDEN.-The numerous friends of Mr B Holden will be very sorry to hear that he has had to undergo a serious operation. The operation, so far, has been successful, although he is still in a very weak state.

THE LATE COLONEL J H HOOLE, C.M.G.—This gentleman whose death from wounds was recorded in our last issue, was well known in Wolston and district, and the news was received with great regret. He was brother of the late Mrs C W Wilcox, of Wolston Manor. He has on several occasions been a generous subscriber to worthy objects in Wolston.

BISHOP’S TRIBUTE TO THE LATE REV. F. R. HARBORD.

To the Editor of the Advertiser.

Sir,—In 1912 I selected Harbord, then curate of Pershore, to be the Vicar of Dunchurch. He had served two years as chaplain in the Boer War, and was, indeed, of the African Church, haying been ordained at Bloemfontein in 1900 ; but he was also a fine example of an English parochial priest. When the present War broke out he felt his call to go, and it could not be withstood, so he was accepted as chaplain and went. In the recent advance in Flanders he had been on duty all day with his batteries, which had been heavily shelled, and had just returned when he decided to go in front instead of back with the wagons so as to be near his men. In this act of comradeship he was hit by a shell and killed. One who saw him that day wrote to me : “ He has done a fine work, and is an example to many younger men. He has nobly upheld the honour of the clergy and died gallantly. The divisional chaplain speaks highly of him.”

As his bishop who sent him out with prayer and blessing, I mourn him deeply, reverencing his devotion. He is an instance, among a great number of clergy known to me, manly Christian fellows, who have offered themselves unflinchingly to God and to their country, and whose sincerity as Churchmen has been shown in their self-sacrifice and courage.

HUYSHE WORCESTER.
Hartlebury Castle.

WEDDING.-A pretty wedding took place on Wednesday morning at St Oswald’s Church, New Bilton, parties being Mr Fred M Staines, son of Rifleman Staines (second officer of the Rugby Fire Brigade) and Miss Lilian Grant, daughter of Mr J Grant, 40 Stephen Street. Mr Staines, who is at present working at Glasgow, was formerly a corporal in the Rifle Brigade, and he was discharged after being dangerously wounded during the heavy fighting of 1915. The Rev H Stevens, a former vicar, promised to perform the ceremony, but he was unable to leave the ship, H.M. Dreadnought, of which he is chaplain, and the Rev G H Roper accordingly officiated. Sergt Hughes acted as best man, and the bridesmaids were Miss Fazey, Misses Kathleen and Margaret Grant (nieces). The bride, who was given away by her brother, Mr Fred Grant, was dressed in chiffon poplin with veil and wreath of orange blossoms. For a number of years the bride was a teacher at the West Council School and a Sunday School teacher at New Bilton ; and, in addition to the presents from the former school, already recorded, the girls of the Sunday School gave her a pretty tea cosy. She also received numerous presents from past and present scholars.

SOON TIRED OF THE ARMY.—At Rugby Police Court on Thursday last week—before J J McKinnell, Esq—William Jephcott, 16 Pinfold Street, New Bilton, was charged with being an absentee from the Royal Warwickshire Regiment.—Insp Lines, who arrested Jephcott, stated that the man joined the Army on August 1st, and deserted on the following day.—Remanded to await an escort.

DEATHS.

DEAKIN.—In loving memory of AROL, the dearly beloved husband of Dinah Ethel Deakin, who died of wounds received in France on August 16th, and was buried at Proven, Belgium.—“ Greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for his friends”—From his sorrowing Wife and Children.

ENSOR.—Reported missing on October 7, 1916, now reported killed on that date. Will, son of William and Emily Ensor, 41 Highbury Place, London. Friends, accept this intimation.

IN MEMORIAM.

COCKERILL.—In loving memory of PTE T. COCKERILL (son of Mrs Grumble, Gas Street), who died from wounds in Canadian Hospital, France, on August 25, 1915. “ At Rest.”

FOTHERGILL.—In loving memory of WILLIAM ALFRED FOTHERGILL, of the 1st & 7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment, who died for his country in France on the 27th August, 1916 ; aged 19 years.
“ He sleeps not in his native land.
But ’neath foreign skies,
And far from those who loved him best,
In hero’s grave he lies.”

FOREHEAD.—In loving memory of Lance-Corpl. T. W. FOREHEAD who died of wounds on August 24,1915.—Never forgotten by his loving Wife and Baby ; also Mr. & Mrs. Dodson & Family.

WARD.—In loving memory of THOMAS WALTER, eldest son of Mr. & Mrs. T. Ward, 170 Lawford Road, New Bilton, who was reported missing August 6, 1915, since reported killed at the Dardanelles ; aged 25 years.
“ He sleeps not in his native land,
But ’neath some foreign sky,
And far from those that loved him best;
Yet we know not where he lies,
We often sit and think of him,
And think of how he died :
To think could not say ‘ Good-bye ’
Before closed his eyes.”
—From his loving Father and Mother, Brothers and Sisters.

WHITTAKER.—In loving memory Lance-Corpl. J. T. WHITTAKER (TOM), who died of wounds August 23, 1916.
“ In a far and distant churchyard,
Where the trees their branches wave,
Lies a loving soldier brother
In British soldier’s grave.
—From KITTY & STANLEY (sister and brother-in-law), Coventry ; ANNIE & JIM (sister and brother-in-law), Beverley, Yorkshire ; & CHARLIE in France.

Summerfield, Walter Ernest. Died 20th Aug 1917

Walter Ernest SUMMERFIELD was born in Clifton, in 1892. The birth was registered in Q2 1892 in Rugby, where they lived at 3 Winfield Street, Rugby. Walter was the son of Frederick Charles and Clara Ellen, née Edwards, Summerfield whose marriage was registered in Lutterworth in Q4 1877. His parents had been born Watford, Northamptonshire and Easenhall, Warwickshire respectively.

In 1901, they were still living at 3 Winfield Street, Rugby; Walter was nine years old, and his father was a ‘railway brakesman’. Walter had four elder and one younger brother, and two elder sisters who were all living at home. The two eldest children had been born at Easenhall, their mother’s home village in Warwickshire, the family had then moved to Clifton, in about 1882.

By 1911, Walter was 19 and a ‘Painters Labourer’, possibly working with two of his elder brothers.  The family was still living in the same house and his parents had now been married 33 years and had had nine children of whom eight had survived. His father was still a ‘Railway Brakesman’.

He seems to have had an army medical inspection on 13 September 1916, when it was noted that he required dental treatment. He was 5ft 8¾ inches tall. He enlisted at Rugby on 19 October 1916, [although a Casualty Form stated that he ‘rejoined the colours’] with his attestation dated 20 October 1916, initially as Private, No.22028, with the 3rd Bn. Royal Warwickshire Regiment [RWR or RWarR] and stationed at Parkhurst from 20 October 1916 to 8 January 1917.

The 3rd (Reserve) Battalion had been raised in August 1914 in Warwick. As a training unit, it remained in UK throughout the war, but moved to Portsmouth in August 1914, and then to the Isle of Wight, where Walter was based at Parkhurst. Walter was thus on ‘home’ service from 19 October to 7 January 1917, a period of 81 days.

He was posted to join the Expeditionary Force in France and Belgium on 8 January – and was there until 13 March 1917 [65 days]. He was posted to the 16th Bn. RWR on 11 January 1917 when he embarked at Southampton, landing at Le Havre on 12 January. The 16th (Service) Battalion (3rd Birmingham) was formed at Birmingham in September 1914 by the Lord Mayor and a local committee and by 26 December 1915 it had transferred to 15th Brigade, 5th Division.

However, on 26 January 1917, a few days after this posting he was again posted, to 2nd/7th Bn. RWR and allocated a new number, No.20600.

The 2/7th Bn. RWR were formed in Coventry in October 1914 as a second line battalion. They became a part of the 2nd Warwickshire Brigade, 2nd South Midland Division. In August 1915 they were redesignated as the 182nd Brigade, 61st (2nd South Midland) Division and had landed in France on 21 May 1916.

A week or so later, on about 5 February 1917, Walter was charged with ‘Falling out on the march without permission’ and given 14 days of Field Punishment No.2. On 1 March 1917 he was given yet another new number, No.268343.

On 5 March he contracted Diarrhoea in ‘the Field’, and there were complications and by 13 March he was at Rouen, presumably at one of the many hospitals there, suffering from ‘Ent. Bac. Dysentery, Flex’. It seems that he was evacuated back to UK for further treatment, as he was on ‘home service’ from 14 March to 10 June 1917 [89 days].

By 20 May 1917 he was back with the 7th Reserve Bn. RWarR, at Hipswell Camp, Catterick, no doubt awaiting a further posting to France.

He returned to France on 11 June 1917, and next day lost one day’s pay for being ‘deficient of kit’, and was posted to the 1st/8th Bn. Later on 28/29 June he was re-posted to 1st/6th Bn. RWarR.

The Battalion Diary[1] records that in late June the 1/8th Battalion was ‘Training’ at Fremicourt, which is in the Somme area.   It received 17 Other Rank reinforcements on 27 or 28 June – one of these was probably Walter. On 30 June, they were relieved by the 7th Shropshire Light Infantry and marched to Gomiecourt. They then marched to Pommier for further training, and on 20 July marched to Halloy, and then on 22 July to Authieule where they entrained – ‘Accomodation will be approximately one Platoon per truck’ – for St Jan-ter-Biezen, in Belgium. Having now had a month’s training, on the night of 30/31 July they marched via Poperinghe, Poperinghe-Elverdinghe Road, and Chemin Militaire, into the Corps Reserve at Camp ‘C’ in Belgium.

In August, a further fortnight’s training followed, with a move of camp on 15 August. The Battalion then moved to Dambre Camp in the St Julian area, and on 16 August ‘Crossed the Iser Canal & moved forward in support to 145 Brigade who attacked East of the Steenbeeke’.   This would have been part of the Battle of Langemarck (16 – 18 August 1917).

From 17 to 20 August the Battalion was ‘in support’, and ‘A & B Coys relieved 1/8 RWarW’. On 20 August they were ‘… relieved by the 1/5 & 1/7 RWarR.’ During the four days the Battalion suffered one officer killed and two wounded, with ‘OR Killed 17, Wounded 65, Missing 1’.

Walter was one of those ‘OR Killed’ in that summary, and died on 20 August 1917 [when his overseas service totalled 71 days]. His body was either never found or not later identified. He is remembered on one of the Panels 23 to 28 and 163A of the Tyne Cot Memorial. The Tyne Cot Memorial is one of four memorials to the missing in Belgian Flanders which cover the area known as the Ypres Salient. Whereas those who died before 16 August 1917 are remembered on the Menin Gate, the United Kingdom servicemen who died after that date are named on the memorial at Tyne Cot. Walter is also commemorated on the Rugby Memorial Gates in Hillmorton Road, Rugby.

On 22 December 1917, Walter’s father, as sole legatee, received £5-1-10d owing to his son, and then a War Gratuity of £3-0-0d on 7 November 1919. On 7 January 1918, his father acknowledged receipt of ‘letters, postcards, cards, & leather pocket book’. On 14 July 1920, Walter’s father was asked if he was still at his address, in order that he could receive Walter’s ‘Plaque and Scroll’. Frederick’s Medal Card and the Medal Roll entry showed that he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal and that his father received Walter’s medals on 28 January 1922.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

– – – – – –

 

This article on Walter Ernest SUMMERFIELD was researched and written for the Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the RFHG, June 2017.

[1]       The National Archives, WWI War Diaries (France, Belgium and Germany), 1914-1920, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, 48th Division, Piece 2755/2: 1/6 Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment (1915 Mar – 1917 Oct); also available on www.ancestry.co.uk.

18th Aug 1917. Fatal Accident to an Aviator

FATAL ACCIDENT TO AN AVIATOR.

A shocking aeroplane accident, resulting in the instant death of a pilot, Lieut William Alexander Taylor, of the Royal Flying Corps, occurred near Rugby early on Friday evening last week. Lieut Taylor, who was only 21 years of age, and the son of Mr William Taylor, of Mary Hill Park, Glasgow, was flying at a height of about 3,000 feet, when one of the plane collapsed, and the machine fell to the earth. The engine was deeply embedded in the pound, and the unfortunate aviator was badly mangled. His skull and practically every bone in his body were broken, and Dr Wardrop, who was quickly on the spot, was only able to state that death had been instantaneous.

The inquest was held by Mr C H Davis, Northampton, on Saturday evening. Mr J G Harper was foreman of the jury.

Second-Lieut Frank William Balls, R.F.C, identified the body, and said deceased was 22 years old. He had been in the Flying Corps at least 18 months.

Captain Kenneth Graeme Leask, R.F.C, said the accident happened about 5.53 p.m on Friday last week. Witness was in the air at the time testing a new machine, and saw the accident. Deceased’s machine was the only other one a in the air. It went up vertically at great speed. Witness than saw the left-hand wing collapse. The machine spun upwards one turn, and then fell to the earth with a spinning nose dive. There were no flames about the machine. When deceased went up vertically witness thought he was trying to loop the loop, and probably he pulled the control back too suddenly, pausing a great strain on the planes and the left-hand plane to collapse. The machine was in order, and had been used the same day by Lieut Park, while witness had used it the night before, when he looped and spun it, and everything was all right. The speed must have been very great for the machine to speed upwards as it did. Witness was about half-a-mile away when deceased went up. Deceased had done observing in France, and also acted as a pilot. In witness’s opinion deceased was very capable pilot for the time he had flown, and on one occasion witness saw him show great presence of mind in saving two machines from clashing together. Deceased had only been in witness’s flight about ten days. Immediately witness saw the occurrence he came down.

A verdict of “ Accidental death ” was returned.

A REMARKABLE COINCIDENCE.

This is only the second fatal mishap that has occurred at the aerodrome since its institution, and when we take into account the number of aeroplanes that go up daily year in and year out, this immunity from more numerous accidents is quite re-assuring.

But there was a remarkable co-incidence about the two accidents. The records kept by Surgeon-Major Collins, the Medical Officer of the Flying Corps, show that both happened on the same day of the month, August 10th, within a few minutes of the same time of the evening, and at a spot which might be said to be identical. The other fatality was twelve months ago, when two officers came into collision.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Corpl W Hyam, Lincolnshire Regiment, son of Mr H Hyam, Drury Lane, was wounded in the last big push. He is going on well. He ia an “ Old boy ” of St Matthew’s School.

Mr P F Fullard, R.F.C., son of Mr A H Fullard, of West Haddon, who recently received his captaincy, has just been awarded the Military Cross for services at the front.

Mrs May, 8 Ringrose Court, North Street, has received information from the War Office that her youngest son, Joe, who is in the Rugby Howitzer Battery, was wounded in action on July 18th, and is now making satisfactory progress. Before the War he was an apprentice at Willans & Robinson’s.

Captain Alan Greenshields-Leadbetter, R.H.A, who was killed last week, was an Old Rugby boy. He served in Gallipoli with the 29th Division until January 8, 1916 — the night of the evacuation of Helles.

Quarter-Master-Sergt Painter, of the Rugby Howitzer Battery, has been injured in action by his horse falling upon him.. His foot was fractured.

Mrs John French, of 3 Bridge Street, Rugby, has received news that her husband, Pte J French, R.W.R., has won the Military Medal in France. He has been wounded three times, and has returned to the trenches for the fourth time. He also won the Queen’s Medal in the South African War. He is the son of Mr and Mrs James French, Long Itchngton.

REV. F. B. HARBORD KILLED IN FRANCE.

General regret was occasioned in Dunchurch and Thurlaston and the district around at the news, which arrived on Sunday morning, of the death from wounds while serving as chaplain with the R.F.A of the Rev F R Harbord, vicar of Dunchurch. Mr Harbord was 49 years of age, and was the youngest son of the late W Engledow Harbord, of the Manor House, Stutton. He was preparing for Cambridge when he had a breakdown in health, and was ordered to South Africa, where he took Holy Orders. For many years he was stationed in the Orange Free State, and for two years was an acting chaplain with the Forces in the Boer War. On returning to England he was curate of Yorktown and Camberley, Surrey, 1909-10, and then rector of Pershore till his subsequent appointment to Dunchurch. On the outbreak of the present War he volunteered for service, but was not called up until August, 1916, and had completed exactly a year of service abroad on the day of his death, August 8th. He had just arranged for a further extension of leave from his parish, and in one of his last letters home wrote :- “ I cannot leave the Army when the hardest fighting is to take place.” Mr Harbord succeeded the Rev C T Bernard McNulty, Leamington, as vicar of Dunchurch five years ago, and he was exceedingly popular in the parish. He was a true friend to the poor, taking a keen interest in all matters appertaining to the welfare of his parishioners. He was one of the governors of the Boughton Trust, chairman and correspondent to the Managers of the Schools, chairman of the Almshouse Trustees, a trustee of the Poor’s Plot Charity, and a member of the Committee of the Dunchurch Working Men’s Club. He is the 19th man from Dunchurch to fall in they present War. Until recently the vicarial work at Dunchurch was undertaken by the Rev B B Carter, who relinquished duty about a fortnight ago, and has been succeeded temporarily by the Rev A F G Wardell.

In a letter to Mrs Harbord, an officer of the R.A.M.C. Writes :—“ I have just come back from a little military cemetery, where we laid to rest this afternoon, at three o’clock, the body of your husband—and to all of us—our Padre. We got the sad news this evening. I went down to the dressing station after breakfast this morning to see the arrangements carried out, and we took him back a few miles to our wagon lines. At the dressing station there was a Church of England chaplain, who saw him when they brought him in, and the end was peaceful and quiet. The doctor there assured me that he was beyond human aid. He had a billet on the main road, and, as was his custom, he used to give a cheery word to the men as they passed. It was while talking to a sergeant and one or two men that the fatal shell came. I do not think he could have suffered much pain—the shock would be so great. There were five officers and five men at the funeral, and Major Dickinson, the senior chaplain, conducted the Burial Service. How much we miss him I cannot say. We had known him now since August of last year, and had lived with him, and out here a constant friendship of a year means a great deal. We, the officers of the staff, are having a cross made to mark the spot where he is laid, and as long as we are in his area you can rest assured that the grave will be looked after. He was a personal friend to everyone, and in that degree the loss to us is a personal one. How vividly some of his great thoughts stand out-thoughts that had helped many of us to bear these hard things in the past and to look forward with some hope to the future. He used to say to us in his service and in the mess that whosoever made the supreme sacrifice out here made it as it was made two thousand years ago. It is a fine thought.”

Another officer writes :—“ I cannot possibly tell you how terribly grieved we are at the death of our Padre. He was a friend of every single man in the Divisional Artillery, and especially in this Brigade, with whom he had lived since he came out last August, and there were very few whom he did not know personally. I should think the greatest consolation you could possibly have must be the knowledge that he died as he himself would have wished—talking to some of the men outside his billet on the road where the infantry pass on their way down from the trenches, and the gunners bring their guns and ammunition wagons.”

The Commanding Officer has written :—“ I regret to have the sad task of informing you of the death of your husband in action. The best consolation I can offer you is that he suffered no pain, and that he has been tireless in his efforts throughout this trying time in cheering and looking after the men of this brigade. My staff and the whole Brigade feel his loss very deeply, and we offer you our very heartfelt sympathy in your great loss. It may comfort you to know that he performed his duties often under severe fire with cheerfulness and personal bravery. The Brigade, one and all, are deeply grieved.”

[Memorial Service also reported in this issue]

WOUNDED ENTERTAINMENT.—On Wednesday last Mr Smith and friends entertained the wounded at “ Te Hira ” with a musical programme. A sergeant acted as chairman. During the concert cigarettes were passed round, and the soldiers were very appreciative.

RUGBY SCHOOL NOTTING HILL MISSION.—Following the visit of the girl members of this Mission which is supported by past and present members of Rugby School, about 60 boys, all employed in munition work in the east end of London, have had a week’s holiday at Rugby. They arrived on Saturday, and were accommodated at the School Gymnasium. On Tuesday they played a team of wounded soldiers at cricket, and they were entertained by the R.F.C. Officers at Lilbourne on another day this week.

VARIETY OF FOOD IN WAR TIME.

In the pursuit of national economy, the daily round of mealtime is apt to become a little monotonous in these days. Any suggestions which provide change, without adding to the cost, and also show the way to use up in the form of tasty dishes such commonplace items as left-over rice pudding and stale bread , will be more than welcome to our readers.

The well-known firm of Messrs Alfred Bird & Sons, Ltd. Have sent us a copy of their very useful and well-produced cookery booklet, entitled “ Pastry and Sweets.” This contains about 120 well-tried household recipes of great interest to every housewife. They have placed a limited number of these books at our disposal. Any reader, therefore, of the Rugby Advertiser who would like to have a copy sent to them post free can obtain same by writing on a post-card to Alfred Bird & Sons, Ltd, Birmingham, and mentioning the name of this paper. As the number available is strictly limited, early application is necessary.

DEATHS.

PARNELL.—On July 23rd, 1917, Corpl. JAMES PARNELL, of Withybrook, 1st Batt. R.W.R., killed in action in France ; aged 22 years.
“ So ready to answer the call to the brave,
Although you now rest in a far-distant grave ;
More or better could any man give
Than die for his country that others might live.”

IN MEMORIAM.

LEACH.—In loving memory of our dear son, PERCY JOHN LEACH, who died at Sulva Bay, August 4th, 1915.
Two years have passed—our hearts still sore.
Day by day we miss him more ;
His welcome smile, his dear sweet face,
Never on earth can we replace.
We often sit and think of him,
And think of how he died ;
To think he could not say “ Good bye ”
Before closed his eyes.
Still sadly missed by his loving Mother and Father, Sisters and Brothers.

Boyes, Frederick Ernest. Died 16th Aug 1917

Frederick Ernest BOYES’s birth was registered in Q3 1896 in Rugby, he was the son of John Boyes, b.c.1858, in Willoughby or Rugby and Anna (Annie) Marie, née Webb, Boyes, also b.c.1858, in Lawford or Rugby.

He appears to have been baptised twice: first on 2 December 1896 at St. Andrew’s church, Rugby, with the surname spelled ‘Boies’; he was then baptised again on 9 May 1897 also at St Andrew’s with the correct surname ‘Boyes’ entered in the register.

On both baptism dates, the family were living at 11 Worcester Street, Rugby, and his father was an ‘Engine driver’ or an ‘LNWR Driver’. In 1901, they were still living at 11 Worcester Street; Frank was about two and the youngest of six children then at home – his father was still a ‘railway engine driver’.

By 1911, the family had moved to live at 84 Railway Terrace, Rugby.   Frank’s parents had been married 31 years and had had 9 children, of whom eight had survived. His father was still a ‘Railway engine driver’; three sons were still at home, with Frederick, now aged 14 working as a ‘Confectioner’s Errand Boy’.

Frederick Ernest Boyes

The exact date Frederick enlisted is not known but was probably sometime in later 1914 or earlier 1915. He enlisted at Rugby, as a Private, No.11104 in the 6th Bn. Oxford and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (‘Ox and Bucks’).

6th (Service) Battalion was formed at Oxford as part of the Second New Army (K2) in September 1914 and then moved to Aldershot to join the 60th Brigade of the 20th Division. In March 1915 they moved to Larkhill, on Salisbury Plain, and then mobilised for war on 22 July 1915 and landed at Boulogne.

Frederick’s Medal Card states that he went to France on 7 August 1915, which was just after the Battalion’s initial mobilisation, and after trench familiarisation and training, the Battalion was in various actions on the Western Front, although none of the major actions in later 1915.  However, in 1916 they were engaged in: the Battle of Mount Sorrel; the Battle of Delville Wood; the Battle of Guillemont; the Battle of Flers-Courcelette; the Battle of Morval and the Battle of Le Transloy.

At some date Frederick was promoted to Lance Corporal. He had already been wounded twice as a later report stated that ‘… Another son, Pte F E Boyes, Oxon & Bucks L.I., has been twice wounded; …’,[1] although it is not known in which actions these had occurred.

In 1917 the Battalion took part in the actions during the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line and the Battle of Langemarck, on the opening date of which, Frederick was killed.

The German retreat to the Hindenburg Line, The Battle of Langemarck, The Battle of the Menin Road Ridge, The Battle of Polygon Wood, The Cambrai Operations.”

It seems the Battalion was not involved on the first day of the 3rd Battle of Battle Ypres and the Battle of Pilckem Ridge (31 July – 2 August 1917), however, they were involved in the first day of the Battle of Langemarck, (16 – 18 August 1917).

RECORD OF THE 6th (SERVICE) BATTALION.

August 16th

Having placed the units attached to the Battalion and the Battalion itself in position, the C.O. and H.Q. established themselves in a block-house on the bank of the Steenbeek (since known as Jock’s House) and waited for zero hour (4.45 a.m.). ….

All was quiet, with the exception of the usual intermittent bombardment. The enemy had been dropping shells about 200 yards behind the K.S.L.I. off and on all night. He evidently had no idea that the whole front under his very nose was crowded with men. It was a wearing time to go through, as if the enemy chanced to discover how things were situated, he could have converted our entire front into a shambles. However, the luck that followed us right through the operations held on this occasion, and we lost only 5 men wounded during the night.

THE FIGHT FOR LANGEMARCK.

I doubt if there was a single man in the Battalion who did not heave a deep sigh of relief when zero at length came (4.45 a.m.). I know that I did. For about an hour before this our artillery had put up a fairly heavy barrage on all the enemy positions. At 4.45 a.m. it sounded as if someone had been careless about leaving the lid off hell. The scene beggared description. It was just light enough to see one’s way. The first thing that struck me was the immense variety of fireworks that the Hun was sending up. There was every known variety of Very Light, and some that I had not seen before. In fact, the only thing that he did not send up was a set-piece, with a portrait of the Kaiser, and God bless our Home in golden rain.

The 11th R.B.’s put up a smoke barrage, and rushed forward to try conclusions with Au Bon Gite.

Before describing our own movements, I will deal with the work of this company of the 11th R.B., for no account of the Langemarck fight can be complete without justice being done to the bitter struggle for Au Bon Gite. First and last, the passage of the Steenbeek cost the 59th Brigade almost half its number in casualties. This was chiefly due to this Au Bon Gite concrete block-house, xcellently planned for defense, and held grimly by the Germans until surrounded and cut off.

The block-house, which had loopholes for machine guns, was irregular in outline, but wonderfully well sited. Around it were five or six smaller posts, and from it to the stream a barbed-wire entanglement ran diagonally in such a way as to break up any attacking party which should attempt an enveloping movement. With the smaller block-houses in the vicinity, there was formed a kind of triangular position of immense strength, and absolutely impervious to artillery fire.

The capture of Au Bon Gite seemed well nigh impossible; the general advance went on regardless of it, and it was perhaps this fact that upset the calculations of the enemy and caused him to surrender about an hour after the attack had been launched. Captain Slade and his company of the 11th R.B., with the aid of a smoke barrage, succeeded in getting under the walls, and, after much discussion, the defenders agreed to surrender, when 32 Germans were made prisoners and two machine guns captured. Had they stuck to their post they could have absolutely hung up the attack of half our Battalion frontage.

Now for our own proceedings. What struck me most at the start was that everybody with one accord lit a cigarette, and promptly looked at peace with all the world. If the boys did feel bloodthirsty, they concealed the fact to admiration. So great was the revulsion of feeling after the trying night, that they went forward smoking, laughing, and talking as if they had just heard that peace had been declared. Our first wave moved forward with parade-ground precision, getting well up to the barrage, which started just the other side of Au Bon Gite; and the rear platoons came over the bridges with perfect steadiness, taking up their correct dressing, and moving on as they got their distance. I will say here that the whole manoeuvre of crossing the Steenbeek was perfectly carried out. The barrage was splendid all the way through, and the highest praise is due to the gunners.

The 60th M.G. Company put up a barrage which must have been a demoralizing affair to face. The 60th Trench Mortar Battery had not any call on their services during the day, but lost fairly heavily, and must have had a fearful time carrying their mortars through the mud.

Our advance was well and steadily carried out. The two left companies suffered heaviest all the way, due to the fact that Au Bon Gite and other positions were firing on them as they advanced; also they had to advance over very bad ground and mud of the worst description.

I myself, with the Scouts, went forward with the second wave, and having watched the operations against Au Bon Gite for two or three minutes, during which time one of its machine guns did a great deal of firing to the east, though without much effect, we moved on to the block-house on the road (B), which had just surrendered, and was disgorging about a company of Boches. I do not know how many were there, but I saw at least forty come out.

I then established a forward runners’ relay post at Block-house A, to which Colonel Boyle shortly afterwards moved his H.Q.   Colonel Wood, of the 6th K.S.L.I., moved forward with his men, and took up his H.Q. at Alouette Farm later on. It took six men to dig him out of the mud on one occasion, but he had the air of enjoying himself immensely.

The 1st Objective was reached with only a trifling loss of men in the right companies; but, as I have said, the left companies suffered more heavily, C Company having been very badly cut up, and A not much  better. Here we were, I think, slightly behind the barrage.

When the time came to go on to the Green Line (2nd Objective), D Company got there and consolidated up to time. C Company were slightly behind them, but the manoeuvre was at length satisfactorily carried out, and the work of the Battalion in the advance was completed.

It hardly comes within the scope of this account to follow the fortunes of the 7th K.S.L.I, and 12th K.R.R.C.; suffice it to say that they went on and carried their own objective forward in good style. More of them later.

Having seen the Green Line taken and consolidated, I went back to the H.Q. block-house, and made a personal report on the situation to Colonel Boyle. Afterwards I visited the whole of the Blue and Green, Lines to make a review of the situation and to collect reports. I collected the following information:

A Company. 2nd Lieut. Cockshut wounded about the time the Blue Line was captured; shot through the thigh – not severely.

2nd Lieut. Moase in command. He estimated his casualties at about 40 up to that time. Well dug in. Getting badly shelled on left.

B Company. 2nd Lieut. Mitchell still in command; has lost 2nd Lieut. Riley, wounded (not severely), and 17 other ranks killed and wounded. Has 5 Lewis guns (his own and those of the 12th R.B.) under 2nd Lieut. Little, who has lost his two subs, 2nd Lieuts Milner and Wastell.

C Company. Captain Middleditch wounded; 54 other ranks not accounted for, but not believed all killed or wounded.   2nd Lieut. Broke in command. Connected up with Somerset Light Infantry on left.

D Company. Captain Money thought that he had lost 40 other ranks (which turned out about right). Well dug in, and well connected on right with 7th Dorsets.

I returned via Alouette Farm, and found 7th K.S.L.I. H.Q. installed. Colonel Wood told me that a Hun counter-attack was threatening from Poelcappelle, and that whereas he got his objectives, the 12th K.R.R.C. had been obliged to fall back from theirs a matter of 200 yards. The Lancashire Fusiliers, on the right, had not gone forward farther than 200 yards beyond the Green Line. He asked for more men and, the Brigadier having assented, at 9 a.m. Colonel Boyle placed our C Company at his disposal, and sent it up to help out the K.R.R.C., who were having a terrific handling.

The Boche counter-attack crumpled up beneath our artillery and rifle fire. The 12th R.B. threw two companies in on the right flank of the K.S.L.I., and the 10th Welsh put a company into Au Bon Gite. By dark the situation had become less critical, and could be said to be in some measure safe. The enemy shelling kept up all the afternoon and night.

So ended the fight for Langemarck. To the military student the fight itself has no special interest. It was merely the conventional advance well carried out. But as an example of troops forming up under the noses of the enemy without shelter trenches or, indeed, any shelter, and with nothing to guide them, it will, I venture to say, stand for long in military history among the offensives of the war. It is an excellent example of what may be done with well disciplined and well officered troops.

The following messages were received, through the Brigade, from Divisional H.Q. :

‘Corps and Divisional Commanders send warmest congratulations to 60th Infantry Brigade and 61st

Infantry Brigade on capture of Langemarck.’

Following message received from XIVth Corps. Begins. ‘The Corps Commander most heartily thanks 20th Division and 29th Division and all the Artillery for the complete success gained today (16th). He particularly congratulates all the fighting troops on their determination to overcome all difficulties of mud and water as well as the opposition of the enemy, Ends. Addressed all concerned.’

Following message from XIVth Corps. Begins. Commander-in-Chief called on Corps Commander this morning (17th) and ordered him to convey his congratulations to all troops engaged in our operations yesterday. Ends.”

August l7th

The morning passed fairly quietly. We managed to get water and rations to the men.

The forward line being considered unsafe, the 12th R.B. detailed two companies to endeavour to correct it; the K.S.L.I, also cooperated, and the attempt was fairly successful.

At 6.30 p.m. the preparatory barrage opened, and A Company moved up to, and to the north of the Alouette Farm road, behind the Green Line. C Company, it will be remembered, had already gone up to the assistance of Captain Lycett and his BLR.R.C.

At 7 p.m. the R.B. made their attack on the Red Line, losing heavily, though being fairly successful.

During the remainder of the night there was intermittent artillery fire over the whole area.

August 18th

A quiet morning. No change in the situation. Heard with no great grief that we were to be relieved at night by the 14th Welsh in the Blue Line, and by the 10th Welsh in the Green Line.

The relief went well, and the Battalion came back to Malakoff Farm (B.23.a.30), the same camp as before, and nowise sorry to get there.

The total casualties in the Battalion during the operations of 16th-18th were :
Killed, or died of wounds, 38 other ranks;
Wounded, 3 officers and 148 other ranks;
Wounded and missing, 4 other ranks;
Missing, 8 other ranks.[2]

Frederick was one of those Killed in Action on that day. His body was either never found or not identified. He is remembered on one of the panels of the Tyne Cot Memorial. He is also commemorated on the Rugby Memorial Gates in Hillmorton Road, Rugby.

Frederick’s Medal Card and the Medal Roll entry showed that he was awarded the British War Medal, the Victory Medal and the 1914-1915 Star.

The Army Register of Soldiers’ Effects, recorded a payment on 22 November 1917, to his widow, Georgina, of £3-1-5d and then a payment of a war gratuity of £4-0-0d on 10 November 1919.

Mr and Mrs Boyes, of Railway Terrace, Rugby, have received information that nothing further has been heard of their son, Pte F H Boyes, Royal Berkshire Regt, who was reported missing on July 1st, 1916, and it must be presumed he has been killed. Pte Boyes was a drummer in the 1st Rugby Boys’ Brigade before enlisting in March, 1915, when only 16 years of age. He was in France before attaining his 17th birthday. Another son, Pte F E Boyes, Oxon & Bucks L.I., has been twice wounded ; whilst a third son, Pte W J Boyes, 7th Warwicks, has also served.[3]

Lance-Corpl Boyes had two brothers who were also serving: his brother Frank Harold BOYES was in the 2nd Bn. Royal Berkshire Regiment and was reported missing, presumed killed in action, on the first day of the Battle of the Somme on 1 July 1916  The other son Pte W J Boyes, was in the 7th Warwicks, and wrote a letter to the Rugby Advertiser which was published on 23 October 1915 (see also Rugby Remembers).

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

– – – – – –

 

This article on Frederick Ernest BOYES was researched and written for the Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the RFHG, June 2017.

[1]       Rugby Advertiser, 16 June 1917.

[2]         http://www.lightbobs.com/6-service-bn-oxf–bucks-li-1917-1918.html, transcribed from The National Archives, Document Reference: WO 95/2120/2, War Diary of the 6th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, Date: July 1915 – Jan 1918.

[3]       Rugby Advertiser, 16 June 1917.

Deakin, Arol. Died 16th Aug 1917

Arol DEAKIN’s birth was registered in about 1889 in Eccleshall Bierlow RD in the border district of Derbyshire and Yorkshire. He would later state that he had been born in Sheffield. He was the second of three sons of Benjamin Deakin, a rolling-mill labourer(born c.1864, in Sheffield), and his wife,Sarah A, née Horsfield,(born c.1869, also in Sheffield).

In 1891, when Arol was one year old, and his elder brother, Arthur, was four, they were living at 155 Burgoyne Road, Sheffield; his mother’s sister, Martha H Horsfield and a niece were with them.

In 1901, the family were still at that same address in Sheffield. Arol’s father was now an ‘enquiry agent’ and the eldest son, Arthur, now 14, was working as a ‘screw turner’. There was now another younger brother, Benjamin, who was six years old. Arol was enumerated as ‘Ar/nold’ which raises the question of his true name – as this entry would have been by his father and not added by an enumerator or an official. Although he was Arol on most documents, it may be that this was an oral transcription of ‘Arnold’, or indeed ‘Harrold’ without its H or D. We will probably never know, but Arol was the name he used when joining the army and in his short later life.

It seems that on 7 November 1907, Arol’s elder brother, Arthur Deakin emigrated to America on the S.S.Ivernia from Liverpool to Boston, USA. He was 21 and an ‘engineer’. This seems to have been an exploratory visit, as he must have returned, and he then emigrated again on the same ship on 15 June 1909.   He was followed a few months later by their father, Benjamin, who travelled from Liverpool on the S.S.Merion to Philadelphia, in Pennsylvania, USA, arriving on 27 December 1909, whilst his wife remained at 21 Channing Street, Sheffield. His final destination was stated as Boston, USA. In 1911, Arol’s mother was still at 21 Channing Street, Sheffield, with their youngest son, Benjamin, now 16 and an apprentice bricklayer. However, by 1917, Arol’s mother and his younger brother, Benjamin, had also moved to join the family in Ontario, Canada.

Before 1911, Arol had moved to Rugby, presumably for work. On 2 April 1911, although a boarder, Arol filled in and signed the census form for the Wright household at 32 Lawford Road, New Bilton, Rugby.   He was then aged 21 and a ‘stenographer’ working for an ‘electrical engineers’. His landlord, John William Wright was an ‘electrical engineer’, also working for an ‘electrical engineers’. Arol was latterly working in the BTH Contracts Department.

Later, in the 3rd quarter of 1911, Arol’s marriage with Dinah Ethel Wright was registered in Rugby [Rugby, Q3, 1911, 6d, 1078]. They had a daughter, Eileen in 1913, and a son, John Arol in about early 1916.

At some date after war was declared, Arol enlisted in Rugby. He was not awarded the 1915 Star, and there is no date of ‘entry into theatre’ on his Medal Card, so it is unlikely that he joined up early – indeed as he was married, he was probably exempt for a time, and probably went to France in 1916, or even as late as earlier in 1917.

He was initially a Gunner, No.186, in the Territorial Royal Field Artillery, where he was later promoted to the rank of Corporal. He was later renumbered as No.840016 in the Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery, and was posted into the 2nd/4th (South Midland) Heavy Trench Mortar Brigade.

Heavy trench mortars provided support to the infantry, and were generally stationed much closer to the front line than much of the artillery. As he died just behind the Ypres salient, it is most likely that he was in action providing support just prior to or during the Battle of Langemarck (16 – 18 August 1917), which was one of the actions of the Third Ypres offensive. He probably came under counter-battery fire from the German artillery and was wounded.   There do not appear to be other members of his unit in the cemetery, but on that same day 87 men of the Royal Field Artillery were killed in action or died of wounds at various points on the front, most of them in the Ypres salient.

It seems likely that Arol was transferred to Mendinghem casualty clearing station, which was about 10 miles north-west of Ypres. He did not recover and died of his wounds on 16 August 1917.   He was buried in the adjacent Mendinghem Military Cemetery in Grave Reference: IV. E. 38.

The Mendinghem Military Cemetery is just beyond the village of Proven. Mendinghem, like Dozinghem and Bandaghem, were the popular names given by the troops to casualty clearing stations in the area during the First World War. In July 1916, the 46th (1st/1st Wessex) Casualty Clearing Station was opened at Proven and this site was chosen for its cemetery. The first burials took place in August 1916. In July 1917, four further clearing stations arrived at Proven in readiness for the forthcoming Allied offensive on this front and three of them, the 46th, 12th and 64th, stayed until 1918.[1]

The Register of Effects[2] confirms Arol’s rank, number and place and date of death. His back pay of £22-2-6d was paid to his widow and sole legatee, Dinah E, on 8 December 1917, and his War Gratuity of £14-10-0d was paid to her on 19 January 1921.

Arol Deakin was awarded the British War and Victory Medals. He is commemorated on the Rugby Memorial Gates in Hillmorton Road, Rugby and also listed on the New Bilton War Memorial.[3] He is listed on the role of BTH Employees who served in the 1914-1918 war, and also as ‘DEAKIN, Arol’, on the BTH War Memorial.[4]

His death was listed as one of the ‘Local Casualties’ by the Sheffield Daily Telegraph in his former home town:   ‘Corpl. Arol Deakin, R.F.A., son Mr. and Mrs. B. and S. A. Deakin, Toronto, Canada, died of wounds August 16th.’[5]

This confirmed that his mother had joined his father, and that they were now living in Toronto, Canada. It seems that his youngest brother went with them, as a Benjamin Deakin, now 30 and a ‘silver polisher’, married with Edith Dickinson, a ‘box maker’, on 26 May 1925 at the Riverdale Methodist church in York, Ontario. His father died aged 58 on 20 August 1918 in York, Ontario, Canada and was buried there at Saint John’s Norway Cemetery.

Arol’s widow, Dinah, remarried with John Edwards in Rugby in 1919; they had three children registered in 1920, 1925 and 1931. After John’s death aged 55 in mid 1932, she married for a third time with Henry Chaplin in mid 1933. Dinah died aged 69 in Rugby in 1960.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

– – – – – –

 

This article on Arol Deakin was researched and written for the Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the RFHG, August 2017.

[1]       Information edited from: www.cwgc.org/find-a-cemetery/cemetery/… .

[2]       UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929.

[3]       The war memorial is by the chapel in Croop Hill Cemetery, Addison Road, Rugby.

[4]       This is from a list of the names on the BTH War Memorial when it was unveiled, and is taken from the list published in the Rugby Advertiser, 4 November 1921.

[5]       Sheffield Daily Telegraph, Tuesday, 11 September 1917.

Reynolds, Thomas Henry. Died 12th Aug 1917

Thomas Henry Reynolds was the eldest son of Thomas Henry and Mary Ann (nee Wells), and elder brother of George Ellis Reynolds  who had died on 31 July 1917 at Ypres.

Thomas was born in Rugby in 1879 and baptised at St Andrews Church on 7 December 1883. In the 1881 census he was with his parents and baby sister Mary in the household of his paternal grandmother Sarah and her second husband Thomas Hibbert in Pinders Lane.

In the 1891 Census he was aged 12 and named as Harry Reynolds, living at 14 Pinders Lane Rugby with his parents and 6 siblings. By 1901 Thomas was aged 22, a baker of bread, living at 61 James Street Rugby with his parents and 6 siblings including his younger brother George.

On 10th January 1904 Thomas aged 25 married Emily Perkins age 24 in St. Mary’s Church Clifton Rugby, and by 1911 they had 2 children, Eva Perkins Reynolds who was born in 1908 in Newton near Rugby and Henry Spencer Reynolds born in 1904 in Rugby.

Thomas Henry was a coal cake man and carter working for Ellis & Sons coal merchants, living in Newton in 4 rooms. Emily’s mother ran the Post Office in Newton together with her daughter.

Thomas’s army attestation of 10 May 1916 and his medal card state that he first joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment as Private No 203552, was transferred to the 5th Battalion of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers and sent to France on 10 June 1917. He received a severe gunshot wound in the left leg on 28 July for which he was treated in the field, later being admitted to hospital at Etaples where he died on 12 Aug, aged 37. He is buried in Grave XXV M6A in Etaples Military Cemetery.

Thomas is mentioned together with his brother in the Rugby Advertiser of 18 August 1917 as being an Old Murrayan, formerly a clerk at Rugby Station in the goods yard of Ellis & Sons, coal merchants.

He received the British Empire and Victory medals. His widow was granted a pension of £1.2s.11d a week for herself and their two children, as well as his back pay of £2.8s.3d and War Gratuity of £3. Emily continued to run the Post Office on her own after Thomas’s death.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM