The Ministers chiefly concerned are understood to be most busily engaged in perfecting the plans for demobilisation. It is to be remembered by the impatient that, though the armistice has brought about a cessation of hostilities, the War is not yet at an end. There is a possibility of the preliminary peace treaty (remarks the London correspondent of the “Birmingham Daily Post ”) being signed towards the end of February, but in authoritative quarters the impression is that it would be well not to expect the peace celebration until March. Until peace is absolutely assured it will be necessary to keep up a very large force, while an army of occupation in a portion of Germany may be rendered a necessity by her internal condition. In these circumstances complete demobilisation is bound to be a slow process.
EMPLOYMENT IN THE LOCAL ENGINEERING TRADES.
We are informed that the cessation of hostilities and the suspension of munition work will cause very little (if any) dislocation in local employment, and already the absorption of labour for civil work has removed the possibility of the spectre of unemployment coming out to mar what everyone hopes will be a bright and happy Christmas in Rugby. As a matter of fact, the supply of labour is not equal to the demand, as will be gathered from an advertisement on page 2 of this issue.
Amongst the reconstruction schemes which the Government have under consideration is one covering an extensive programme of large central electricity supply stations for the manufacture of electricity in bulk, so that it can be supplied at low rates to the commuter. The engineering shops of Willans & Robinson and the B.T.H Company are admirably laid out to take care of this class of apparatus required for this scheme, and should secure their share of the contracts resulting from this programme being carried through by the Government.
It is common knowledge that the B.T.H Company are in need of first-class machinists and mechanics of all descriptions, as well as a large number of unskilled labourers. Those Rugby craftsmen who temporarily obtained work away from Rugby should seek employment in Rugby now that there is a slackening of demand for labour in purely munition plants.
LOCAL WAR NOTES.
Pte J E Grimsley, 2/7 Royal Warwickshire Regiment, whose home is at Harborough Magna, was killed in action by a machine gun bullet on November 1st. In a letter to his wife an officer states : “ He was one of my best men ; in fact, had he come out alive, Capt Chamberlain was recommending him for a decoration. In several fights I always admired his conduct and his pluck.”
The “ Gazette ” announces that Second-Lieut G A T Vials, West Riding Regiment, the Northants County cricketer, relinquishes his commission on account of ill-health, and is granted the hon rank of lieutenant.—His father, Mr G Vials, formerly practised as a solicitor in Rugby.
Pte E P Burden, R.M.L.I., late of 24 Victoria Avenue, New Bilton, died in hospital in France on November 23rd from influenza. Before joining the Colours he was employed by Messrs Willans & Robinson.
Pte A Badger, 9th Battery, R.F.A (Napton), died at Fargo Military Hospital, Salisbury Plain, on Saturday, from pneumonia. He was 25 years of age.
Bombardier Arthur Russell, R.G.A, husband of Mrs Esther Russell, of 6 Benn Street, Rugby, and son of Mr & Mrs W K Russell, died on Tuesday last at Cattrick Bridge Camp. Bombardier Russell, who was a postman at the Rugby Office, had seen two years’ service in France, had been wounded and gassed, and was just convalescent from a broken ankle, sustained by accident while in the lines.
Temp Major C D Miller, the polo player and organiser, is gazetted Acting Lieut-Colonel while commanding a Base Remount Depot.
DEATH OF ROLAND WILSON BROWNE.—Mr & Mrs Browne, of the Book Shop, Station Road, whose three sons have been doing their part in the great War, have received news of the death of their second son Roland, who was killed in action in France on November 4th. He was an Old Murrayian, and on leaving school was apprenticed in the Drawing Office of the B.T.H, where he remained until the time of his joining the 2nd Manchester. Regiment, He was very popular with and held in the highest esteem by his fellow-draughtsmen, and, apart from being quick and clever at his work, he showed great ability in his love and knowledge of art and art subjects. He was a pupil of John Hassell, B.A, and turned out some clever black and white sketches. In water colour he also displayed talent, but seemed especially to excel in oil colour painting. Touching references were made at the Congregational Church services on Sunday last. He was 23 years of age. and had been in the Army less than five months when he met with his untimely end.
INFLUENZA.—The number of deaths from influenza in Rugby district during the past week was six, a decrease of 10 on the preceding week. Since the 14th October no less than 130 deaths from either influenza or pneumonia have been registered locally.
BRITISH CASUALTIES IN THE WAR.
The figures of British casualties during the war are officially given for each theatre of war, and show a total of 3,049,991. They are made up as follows :—Killed and died, 37,876 officers ; 620,828 other ranks ; wounded, 92,664 officers ; 1,939,478 other ranks ; missing (including prisoners), 12,094 officers ; 347,051 other ranks.
POST-PRESENTATION OF A MILITARY CROSS.
At Birmingham on Friday, last week a number of decorations were presented to men who had won them, or their relatives, by Major-General Sir Hy Schlater. Among the recipients was the mother of Colour-Sergt-Major G H Hayes, R.W.R, who was wounded at Neuve Chapelle on October 4th, 1917, and died a few days afterwards. The act for which the Cross was awarded was officially described thus :—
“ The advance was held up by a strong enemy machine gun position, and all the officers became casualties. He took command and crawled under direct fire to a position from which he killed several of the enemy. He then led his men in an attack on the post, which he captured with ten prisoners and a machine gun. He showed splendid courage and initiative.”
Colour-Sergt-Major Hayes was for some time employed at the Great Central Station as a drayman, and afterwards at the B.T.H as a shunter, where he was working when called up. He had been in the “ E ” Co. (Rugby) Volunteers for 16 years. He was also a well-known local footballer, having played with the Penlee, Star, Old Boys and other clubs, by the members of which and his many friends he was much respected.
FOR WAR SERVICE.
The under-mentioned, have been brought to the notice of the Secretary of State for War by the Chairman of the Joint War Committee of the British Red Cross Society and Order of St John of Jerusalem in England for valuable services rendered in connection with the War :— Miss L Court, Kineton Hospital, Warwick ; Miss B Lewis, Clifton Court Hospital, Rugby ; and Miss A O Tiley, Kineton Hospital Warwick.
RETURN OF A PRISONER OF WAR.—R Burton. son of Mr & Mrs James Burton, Daventry Road, has arrived home from Germany, where he has been a prisoner of war. He went out to France with polo ponies, and was soon in the fighting and was taken prisoner. It is needless to say he received a hearty welcome, and all his old friends were glad to see him looking fairly well.
PARISH COUNCIL.—At a special meeting on Tuesday evening there were present : Messrs C E W Boughton-Leigh (chairman), J Martin, W Allen, and F Fellows (clerk):—The question of a parish war memorial was raised, and the members were unanimously of opinion that some steps in this direction should be taken as soon as possible.—The Chairman said personally he favoured the erection of a parish hall and reading room, similar to that at Clifton and other villages, provided that they could raise sufficient funds. This would fill a growing need in the parish, and if such a memorial was erected they could have the names of all who had offered their service to the country inscribed on the walls.—On the motion of Mr Martin, who said he agreed with the suggestion of the Chairman, the question was deferred until the next meeting.
GUN WEEK.—Houses were gaily decorated with flags when the gun visited this village. The quota necessary for Church Lawford and Kings Newnham to obtain a large shell was £1,200, but this sum was exceeded by £250. This result was the more creditable because at the recent estate sale most of the farmers and some of the other residents bought their respective homes and farms.
DIED IN FRANCE.—A telegram was received by his mother at Broadwell, on Monday afternoon, conveying the sad information that Pte Mark Abbott, of the 7th Dragoon Guards, had died of double pneumonia while with the Forces in France. The deceased had completed his period of service in the Regular Army, having served a good portion of his time in India, from whence he came with the first Indian Forces to France. He was of a genial disposition and popular in the village.
WALTER HART’S DEATH.—A letter has been received from the Commanding Officer of his Battalion, stating that Corpl Walter Hart was killed by a shell on the 6th ult, near Le Catelet. The writer adds that Corpl Hart had done good work for him since he came to his Company, and that he entertained the highest opinion of him.
SERGT F RUSSELL DECORATED.—Sergt F Russell (Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment), who has been spending a few days at home, has received notification that he has been awarded the Military Medal for his gallant conduct on the 14th ult, when heading his men info action. Sergt Russell is fast recovering from his wound received on that occasion, and returned to Halifax on Monday. Besides his new decoration, he already holds the Queen Victoria and King Edward VII Medals for the South African War, and the Long Service Medal.
WOUNDED.—During the last hours of the war Rifleman E G T STEEL (N.Z Rifle Brigade), only son of Mr & Mrs Geo Steel, of this village, was wounded. His company had just taken their objective, and after witnessing the loss of several of his comrades, Rifleman Steele was hit with a bullet in the right arm. He is progressing well. Pte H Windsor (R.W.R) has also been wounded in the forearm.
RETURN OF A PRISONER OF WAR.—On Friday evening last week Pte Sidney Linnett (A.S.C), who has for over six months been a prisoner of war with the Germans, was welcomed home with great rejoicing. Pte Linnett, who is the adopted son of Mr and the late Mrs W Gaskins, of the Model Village, enlisted in September, 1914, at the age of 18, in the Royal Warwicks, and was eventually transferred to the A.S.C. He had seen much service all through the War, and on April 10th last was reported missing, and afterwards found to be a prisoner of war. He was located with others in the zone of danger behind the German lines, and not only worked under these conditions, but also experienced great cruelty from his captors. On the signing of the armistice he was set at liberty, and he and his comrades had to make their way back to the British lines with no food except turnips obtained from the fields. He arrived at Dover on the 19th, and reached Marton Station on the evening of the 22nd. Being unable to walk the two miles to his home, he was driven up. He states that many of his comrades lost their lives by being made to work within range of the British guns. Pte Linnett has grown much thinner during his captivity, and is still suffering from the shock of his experiences ; but the bare mention of the word “ home ” never fails to bring back his former sunny smile.
PTE BONEHAM DISCHARGED.—Pte Francis Wm Boneham, son of Mr T & Mrs Boneham, of Bretford, has now returned home. He joined the 3rd Warwicks in 1916, and saw much service in France. He has received a bad fracture of the right knee-cap, and is permanently disabled. He was also badly gassed, from the effects of which he is now suffering. Before joining up he was a respected employee of Messrs Bluemel’s Ltd.
Sapper H Smith. R.E.—News has reached Miss Dorothy Smith that her brother, Sapper Harry Smith, of the Royal Engineers, has died of influenza in Italy. He was one of the earliest Wolston recruits, joining up in August, 1914. Before the War he was in the employ of Mr A J Lord as a carpenter. He went through many battles in France, and was wounded on five different occasions, besides being once gassed. His father—the late Mr G Smith—was for many years employed as a signalman at Brandon and Wolston Station. Another brother, who has been in the Marines for 12 years, fought in the Battle of Jutland, and was on the destroyer, Champion Leader. He had also been previously wrecked.
MILITARY MEDAL.—The medal won by the late Joseph Edmans was presented to his father—Mr J Edmans, of Wolston—by Major-General Slater, of the Midland Command. The brave deed for which the medal was awarded was for picking up a live bomb and hurling it out of danger, and thus saving many lives. He, with one of his brothers, went through the Battle of Mons, and so the Mons Star is also due to the deceased hero. Mr Edmans is proud of the Army record of his family, six sons having fought for their country. Two have paid the extreme penalty, and several of the others have been badly wounded, including Sergt Percy Edmans, who received his discharge.
PRISONER’S RETURN.—Lance-Corpl Reader, who has been a prisoner of war in Germany, returned to his home at the beginning of the week. He met with a very hearty welcome from the inhabitants. Lance-Corpl Reader has not fared so badly as many of the prisoners. Thanks to the parcels he received from the Rugby Prisoners of War Fund, he had done fairly well, and is very thankful for them. Mr Reader, who is agent for Mr Udal, is well known and respected, and the inhabitants are delighted to think that he has safely returned to his wife and children.
THE FUNERAL OF CORPL HORACE LEE THOMAS, who met with a fatal accident at the Kineton Hospital, took place at Tooting Cemetery on Monday, and was an impressive military ceremony, witnessed by a large concourse of people. The H. A.C provided a firing party, and the coffin was covered with the Union Jack. Over 30 beautiful floral tributes were sent, including several from Kineton. The relatives were deeply grateful for the kindness shown at Kineton.
PEACE, longed-for and fought-for, has at last arrived.
But the plenty of pre-war days will not return yet awhile. Rationing must remain in force for some time.
The International Stores ask their customers, therefore, to accept cheerfully for a little longer those restrictions which the War made necessary.
It will be their earnest endeavour, whatever conditions the future may bring, to maintain the reputation they have built up for High Quality, Low Prices, and Efficient Service.
They are confident that when normal times are restored, their old customers will continue their patronage.
THE BIGGEST GROCERS IN THE WORLD
BADGER.—In ever-loving memory of Bombardier A. BADGER, 235869, A Battery R.F.A., who passed away peacefully from pneumonia, at Fargo Hospital, Salisbury Plain, on November 23rd, aged 25.
“ A light is from our household gone,
The voice we loved is still ;
A place is vacant in our hearts
Which never can be filled.”
—Sadly missed by Mary, Sis, Jim, Fanny, Mr. & Mrs. Cockerill and Family.
BURDEN.—In loving memory of my dear brother, Pte. E. P. BURDEN, R.M.L.I., who died of influenza in hospital in France on November 23, 1918.
BROWNE.—On November 4th, killed in action in France, ROLAND WILSON, second and dearly beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. J. W. Browne, Railway Terrace, Rugby; aged 23 years.
FLETCHER.—On November 8th, at Boulogne, of pneumonia, Driver G. FLETCHER, R.F.A., aged 19 years and 10 months, the dearly beloved son of George and Lettie Fletcher, who passed peacefully away after great suffering, most patiently home.
“ The evening star shines on his grave :
The one we could not save ;
’Tis sad, but ’tis true, we cannot tell why,
The best are the first that are called on to die.”
—From Father, Mother, Sisters and Brothers.
GRIMSLEY.—Killed in action on November 1st, 1918, in France, JOHN EDWARD, the dearly beloved husband of Edith Ellen Grimsley, of Harborough Magna, near Rugby.
“ A day of remembrance, sad to recall,
The loss of our dear one, loved by us all.
We think of him in silence, and his name we oft recall ;
But there is nothing left but his photo on the wall.
Fondly we loved him, he is as dear to us still.
But in grief we must bend to God’s Holy Will.
If we could have raised his dying head, or heard his last farewell,
The grief would not have been so hard for us that loved him well.”
—Too dearly loved to ever be forgotten by his loving Wife, Mother, Father, Sisters and brother Will.
SMITH.—On November 7th, in Italy, of pneumonia following influenza, Sapper HARRY SMITH, Royal Engineers, youngest son of the late George Smith, of Wolston, aged 25 years.—“ Until the day breaks and the shadows flee away.”
WILLIAMS.—On October 30th, killed in action in France, WILLIAM, the dearly beloved husband of Emily Williams, 14 Lawford Road, New Bilton.
WILSON.—In ever-loving memory of my dear husband, Pte. WILLIAM HENRY WILSON, killed in action in France on November 1, 1918.
“ The midnight stars are shining
On a grave I cannot see,
Amid where storms of battle raged
Lies one most dear to me.”
—From his loving Wife.
WILSON.—Killed in action in France on November 1st, 1918, Pte. WILLIAM HENRY WILSON, aged 24 years ; eldest and beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. Wilson, of Bilton.
“There is a link Death cannot sever,
Love and remembrance live for ever.”
—From his sorrowing Father and Mother, Sister and Brothers.
COX.—In proud and loving memory of Rifleman E. J. COX (ERN), K.R.R., Bilton, who was killed at Cambrai on November 30, 1917.—Deeply mourned by his Mother, Father, Sisters, Brothers, and Nellie.
PEARCE.—In loving memory of WALTER, the dearly beloved son of H. & C. Pearce, of Dunchurch, who was killed on H.M.S. Bulwark on November 26, 1914.
“ There is a link death cannot sever,
Love and remembrance live for ever.”
—Never forgotten by his Mother, Father, Brothers and Sisters.
RICHARDSON.—In ever-loving memory of Sergt LEONARD RICHARDSON, of the K.R.R. Corps, who was killed in France on November 30th, 1917.
“ Days of sadness still come o’er us,
Tears in silence often flow,
Thinking of the day we lost him :
Just a year ago.
Too far away thy grave to see,
But not too far to think of thee.”
—Never forgotten by his sorrowing Mother, Sisters, Brother, Grandmother and Nell, The Banks, Dunchurch.
WALL.—In loving memory of Corpl. LOUIS HAROLD WALL, M.M., King’s Royal Rifles, reported missing November 30, 1917.—From his loving Father and Mother, Eva and Jan.