15th Sep 1917. A Successful Experiment.

A SUCCESSFUL EXPERIMENT.—One of the war-time experiments tried at the Murray School this year was the utilisation of the flower plots for vegetable growing. This proved very successful, and resulted in the raising of 116lbs of carrots, 86lbs of beet, and 46lbs of parsnips. This does not include thinnings, which have been constantly pulled, amounted to about 50lbs.

OUTING.—A very pleasant outing to Kenilworth was enjoyed by the shell workers of the B.T.H last Saturday. They journeyed in brakes via Bubbenhall and Stoneleigh Deer Park. After tea a visit was paid to the Castle ruins. A concert was arranged, and those who contributed to the harmony were : Miss Cave, Miss Hollinsworth, Mrs Cotching (accompanist), Messrs Barnett, Boff, Welsh, Brown and A Harris. The party, numbering 70, had a most enjoyable time. The arrangements were made by Mr D Barnett.

NORMAL TIME ON SEPT. 17th.

The Home Secretary gives notice that summer time will cease and normal time will be restored at 3 a.m (summer time) in the morning of Monday next, the 17th inst, when the clock will be put back to 2 a.m.

All railway clocks and clocks in Post Offices and Government establishments will be put back one hour, and the government requests the public to put back the time of all clocks and watches by one hour during the night of Sunday-Monday, 16th-17th inst. Employees are particularly recommended to warn all their workers in advance of the time change of time.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Mrs Angell, 17 Little Pennington Street, has received official intimation that her son, Pte A Angell, Royal Warwicks, has been seriously wounded by gunshot in the face, arms, and neck, and his left leg has been amputated. Pte Angell has been twice wounded previously, lost a finger, and has been gassed twice.

MR W J LARKE HONOURED.

The many friends of Mr W J Larke, 71 Hillmorton Road assistant chief engineer at the B.T.H, who has been lately employed in the Ministry of Munitions, will be pleased to hear that he has been appointed an officer of the Order of the British Empire.

PTE. BRADSHAW KILLED.

Mrs Bradshaw, of 216 Lawford Road, Rugby, received news this week that her husband, Pte Bradshaw, had been killed in action on August 19th. In writing to the widow deceased’s officer states : “ It was a great shock to me when I returned to the regiment to find Pte Bradshaw had been killed in action. He had just carried a wounded man to the first-aid post when a shell came and smashed the post. I am not wont to praise unduly, but your husband has, during the very long period he has been with us, done work of very great service, especially when the lines. To those of us who have been with the battalion through many months his loss will be very keenly felt.” Pte Bradshaw was in the 7th South Staffs. He enlisted on the outbreak of war. He has seen service in Egypt, the Dardanelles, and France.

OLD MURRAYIAN GAINS MILITARY MEDAL.

In a letter to Mr. W T Coles Hodges Sergt F H Bird, of the Army Service Corps, writes :—“ We have had a very hot time for the past ten weeks. We were in the big push of July 31st, and I was mentioned in dispatches, and have since been awarded the M.M. . . . . We have had some very bad weather, but for the past few days has been lovely and fine. . . . I have never met any of the ‘old boys’ out here. We have been out here two years, and I have only met two fellows who came from Rugby.”

ANOTHER B.T.H EMPLOYEE KILLED.

News has been received at the B.T.H that Second-Lieut Percival Thistlewood, Rifle Brigade, died of wounds on August 24th. Second-Lieut Thistlewood was the only surviving son of Mr Thistlewood, a well known Leamington resident, and brother of Corpl Frank Thistlewood, Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry, who was killed on September 3, 1916. He enlisted in the Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry within a month of the commencement of the War, and was soon promoted sergeant-major. After being in France 18 months he returned to England to train for a commission, and was eventually gazetted to the Rifle Brigade. After leaving school he came to the B.T.H with a view to qualifying as an electrical engineer. Here he showed marked aptitude for the work, and in 1913 he won the first prize in an open competition as an electrical engineer. Second-Lieut. Thistlewood was 26 years of age, and like his brother Frank was very popular with his fellow-employees at Rugby.

Mr W H W PARSONS’ NEPHEW KILLED IN AN AIR RAID.—One of the victims of the recent air raid in London was Mr Henry Over Parsons, 33, a violinist, who was injured by the bursting of the time fuse of an aerial torpedo or shrapnel, and died two days afterwards. Deceased’s widow stated at the inquest that her husband informed her that he must have been blown 10 yards. Mr. Parsons was a nephew of Mr W H W Parsons, sanitary inspector to the Rugby Urban District Council.

WOLSTON.

MR A J POXON ILL.—The numerous friends of Mr A J Poxon will be sorry to hear that he is ill in hospital at Chatham, He is in the Naval Air Service, and for some length of time has been on foreign service. Before joining the Navy he was assistant overseer of Wolston and attendance officer for the Warwickshire Education Committee in the Monks Kirby district. He is the elder son of Mr John Poxon.

LANCE-CORPL G READER A PRISONER.—Mrs Reader has received a postcard from her husband, who was reported some weeks ago by the Army Authorities as missing. In the postcard he stated that he was slightly wounded and a prisoner of war at Munster, Westphalia. The news that he is still alive has given general satisfaction in the district. The facts have been communicated by the Rev J C Gooch to Mr J R Barker, hon. secretary of the Ruby Prisoners of War Help Committee, and arrangements have been made to send Lance-Corpl Reader the standard food parcels and bread.

BRINKLOW.

DEAD HERO’S WIDOW RECEIVES HIS MEDAL.—Pte R E H Murden, of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal. Before hostilities broke out he has served seven years in the Army and at once proceeded to France where he went through all the early engagements. He was a native of Brinklow and before entering the Army was employed by Mr W Dunn, of Church Lawford. He has been killed since the medal was awarded, and his widow, who resides at Longford, was summoned to the hospital at Birmingham on Saturday, when it was presented to her by Lieut-General Sir H C Slater, C.C.B No record had been taken of the brave deed deceased had performed—a fact for which the General expressed regret. As Mrs Reeves received the medal she was heartily cheered by the wounded soldiers and staff at the hospital. Her brother-in-law, Pte J Murden, lost a leg in France.

RUGBY PRISONERS OF WAR HELP COMMITTEE.

The monthly meeting of the Rugby Prisoners of War Committee was held in Benn Buildings on Monday last. Mr W Flint C.C, chairman of the committee, presiding. There were also present : Mrs Blagden (hon. Treasurer), Mrs Anderson, Messrs G W Walton, J H Mellor, Thatcher, Porter, Clarle, and the Son Secretary (Mr J Reginald Barker).

The balance-sheet for the year ended July 31st, particulars of which have already been published, was presented by the Chairman, who also read a letter from the Hon. Auditor, Mr W G Atkinson I.A, congratulating the committee upon the excellent results they have achieved as shown by the year’s figures. Only those who actually go through the accounts could form any idea of the enormous amount of work entailed, and great credit is due to Mr Parker for the methodical and painstaking manner in which this work is carried out. The Chairman felt that not only the committee, but all interested in the fund, would be very pleased to have this testimonial to the efficient manner in which Mr Barker carried out his duties.—This was cordially endorsed.

Mr Barker reported that there were now 73 prisoners of war on their list, the total cost of the regulation food parcels and bread to these men now amounting to £162 18s 6s per month. He had, however, been in constant communication with the Regimental Care Committee of each man’s unit, and had, through these committees, secured “ fairy-godmothers ” for 26, and, in addition, various sums on behalf of others amounting to £74 10s per month ; thus the balance to be raised in Rugby and district was still very great, no less than £88 per month being required. Constant effort would have to be made to see that this was maintained.

The Chairman referred to the gifts sent from Egypt by Rifleman Fred Staines, with the wish that they be disposed of for the benefit of the fund. It was decided that they be competing for, the snake being offered as first prize and the necklaces second and third prizes—the tickets to be one penny each.

The prizes are on view at 9 Regent street. Persons willing to sell tickets are invited to make application for books of same to the Hon. Secretary at this address.

WARWICKSHIRE WAR AGRICULTURAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE.

At a meeting of this committee it was decided to send a further resolution to the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries on the matter of fixed prices for meat. The resolution was to the effect that, in the event of the present Order being allowed to stand, a great waste of grass and consequent loss of meat would result, inasmuch as farmers would sell all their cattle while the higher price was obtainable rather than leave them on the grass, where they would gain more weight, but which would not pay on account of the declining price as fixed by the Food Controller. The statement of the soldier supply to date shows that there are 630 working on farms, and that there is a further available supply at the barracks.

RUGBY RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL.

THE HOUSING QUESTION.

The committee to which the letter from the Local Government Board with reference to the provision of houses for the working classes after the War had been referred reported, that the Clerk should reply that they estimated that the number of houses required, and which should be built on the conclusion of the War, was 500, as overcrowding was very prevalent.—The Vice-Chairman : It is a very big order, 500 houses ; but the committee think they will be required.—On the motion of Mr Cripps, seconded by Mr Burton, the motion was approved.

DEATHS.

BRADSHAW.—On August 19th, in France, Pte. F. J BRADSHAW, 7th Staffords, of Long Itchington, aged 28. Deeply mourned by his sorrowing wife.
“ He sleeps not in his native land,
But ‘neath some foreign skies,
And far from those that loved him best :
In a hero’s grave he lies.”

IN MEMORIAM.

BARNETT.—In loving memory of JOSEPH WILLIAM BARNETT, who was killed in action at Barent in le Grand, near Albert, France, September 11, 1916 ; second son of Mr. & Mrs. Barnett, Hillmorton Paddox.
“ One year has 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 he closed his eyes.”
.—Sadly missed by his loving Wife, Mother and Father, Sisters and Brothers.

BARTLETT.—In loving memory of our dear REG, who was killed in action in France on September 17, 1916. At rest.—Sadly missed by his loving Dad, Brother, Sisters, and Trixie.

COLING.—In ever-loving memory of Gunner JOHN THOMAS COLING, R.F.A., the dearly beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. John Coling, Grandborough, who died of wounds at Rouen Hospital, France, Sept. 10, 1916.
“ Sleep on, dear son, in a far-off grave :
A grave we may never see ;
But as long as life and memory lasts
We will remember thee.”

HAYES.—In ever-loving memory of my dear husband Pte. WILLIAM GEORGE RUSSELL HAYES, Coldstream Guards, of Combroke ; killed in action at Ginchy, France, September 15, 1916 ; aged 33.—His duty nobly done.

HOPKINS.—In loving memory of FRANK, the beloved and youngest son of Henry Hopkins, of Long Lawford, who was killed in action in France on Sept. 18, 1915.
“ He sleeps, not in his native land,
But ‘neath some foreign skies,
And far from those that loved him best ;
In a hero’s grave he lies.”
—From his Sister.

LISSAMER.—In loving memory of Pte. WILLIAM ARTHUR LISSAMER, youngest and beloved son of Thomas and Emily Lissamer, 5th Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry, who fell in action in Frances on September 15, 1916.
“ The midnight star shines o’er the grave
Of a dear son and soldier brave ;
How dear, how brave, we shall understand,
When we meet in the Better Land.
—Sadly missed by his loving Father and Mother.

OVERTON.—In ever-loving memory of my dear husband, GABRIEL GEORGE OVERTON, Gaydon, of the Coldstream Guards, officially reported missing, now reported died of wounds received in action on September 15, 1916.
“ His comrades will return one day,
But he will be sleeping in a far-off grave,
And the saddest of it all, dear,
It not to know where you are laid.”
—Sadly missed by his loving wife PEM.

 

Bird, William Abraham John. Died 4th Oct 1916

William was born in Rugby, the only son of John and Martha Bird of 67, Railway Terrace. His birth is recorded in the Rugby Register for June 1881 ref. 6D 549. He was baptised on 24 June 1881. He attended Murray School, and returned there for one term as a teacher before working a supply teacher for Warwickshire County Council and then as a Head Teacher at Knowle Parochial School, Warwickshire. He married Sarah Alice in Newport, Shropshire in mid 1908. In the 1911 Census he is living at Lodge Road, Knowle with his wife Alice aged 30. They had 2 children after the Census..

He was a keen rugby player for Rugby F C captaining the 2nd XV and playing for the 1st XV both as a back and forward.

William joined the Royal Fusiliers, regimental number 1/154 as a Private, but after landing in France in 1915, he was transferred to the 7th Battalion,Queens Own (Royal West Kents) The Buffs with number G/18174.

During his time in France he was promoted to Lance Corporal.

In the last few months of his life he took an active part in a number of attacks by his Battalion and against him by the German Army

From the 2nd to the 5th of May 1916 the 7th Buffs marched to Picqingny north-west of Amiens.

The rest of the month was training at their billet for the attacks to come. On the 9 and 10 June they moved by train and marching to Bray. A C and D companies moved to Carnoy and on the 15th they relieved the 8th Surreys. They were active with rifle and machine gun fire against the enemy. After relief they spent 22/23 June carrying gas cylinders to the front line. The next 2 days they were preparing for the new attack.

In late June/early July 1916, two major attacks were undertaken by the 7th Buffs as part of the 55th Brigade. On 26th June the start time of 12.30 am had to be delayed to 10.30am. Due to communication difficulties. ‘D’ Company went missing and 3 attempts to locate them failed. Eventually a wounded survivor reported that they reached the German trench unseen and laid on the parapet until a German came out and he was shot. This alerted the rest of the enemy who killed and wounded the Company.

A major attack was organised for the 55th Brigade for 1st July, in which the 7th Buffs were to cover the 8th Surreys and the 7th Queens. There was considerable resistance from the Germans from the start, with the 8th Surreys being held up in Train Alley, and they requested help. Communication failures meant that only ‘C’ company reached the objective. ‘D’ Company remained in their original position as no order to advance reached them, and their Officer was killed. The move was a success and at the end of the day 600 yards of Montauban Alley was held by the 7th Buffs, thereby releasing the 2 other battalions. Many trenches between the FL and Brigade HQ has been damaged during the offensive. Casualties were: I officer killed, 7 wounded, 1 NCO killed 1 wounded, 3 other ranks 37 killed, 135 wounded, 1 missing.

They were in billets for 3 days and then marched over 5 days to Briquetier.

There is a gap in the War Diary copy from the 13th of July 1916 to 1/1/1917. Therefore we do not know how William met his death, on 4th October 1916. He was due to be commissioned as an Officer.

He is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial Pier and face 11C. He is also remembered on his parents grave in Clifton Road Cemetery.

He was given the Victory and British War medal.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM