AN UNFOUNDED RUMOUR
Feverish excitement was caused in the town on Thursday afternoon by the circulation of a rumour that an armistice had been signed at 2.30 p.m.
In several instances workpeople gave themselves up to jubilation, and work came to a standstill, until it was found later in the day that the statement had not come through an official source and was premature.
LOCAL WAR NOTES.
Capt George Alan C Smith, M.C, Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, who has been killed by a shell in France, was the elder son of the Master of Dulwich College. At Rugby he was head of his house (Mr G F Bradby’s), and played in the School XV for two seasons, captaining the team during his last term.
Lieut G T S Horton, Royal Hussars, son of Mr T Horton, J.P, Ashlawn House, near Rugby, has been awarded the Military Cross.
Sergt A J Chadwick, of Kilsby, who has been on active service since December, 1914, has been awarded the Military Medal for gallantry on the field.
Lance-Corpl W L Gilks, Yorks & Lancs Regt, son of the late Mr Lewis Gilks, farmer, Grandborough, has been killed in action. He enlisted in August, 1914, and had seen considerable foreign service.
The following Rugby men have been posted as missing :—Pte E Cox, Pte F Smyth, Pte C Spokes, and Pte W Boote, all of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment ; Ptes A Webster, Royal West Surrey Regiment ; A J Webster, London Regiment ; G Watkins, R.W.R, and H Cockerill, M.G.C, have been reported killed ; and Pte W H Newman, Royal Berks Regiment, has died of wounds. Lance-Corpl R G Salmon, M.G.C, has been taken prisoner.
Gunner F J Lines, youngest son of Mrs Lines and the late Mr Lines, 17 Spring Street, died of wounds on October 6th. He was an old Murrayian, 20 years of age, and before joining the army in August, 1916, he was employed by the late Mr C B Jones, hairdresser, Murray Road, who has also been killed in action.
Lance-Corpl H Evans (23), son of Mr W Evans, Thurlaston, formerly of Crick, has died at Norwich Hospital from pneumonia, contracted on active service. He joined the K.R.R on September 2, 1914, and saw a good deal of heavy fighting round Ypres. He was wounded at Hooge in 1915, and again on the Somme in 1916. He was subsequently invalided home, and afterwards was transferred to the Mechanical Transport, A.S.C. He contracted a chill while on duty, and after laying up for a few days he reported for duty too soon, caught another chill, and died on Wednesday. In peace time he was well known as a footballer and cricketer. An elder brother was killed in June last, and another brother is in France.
Pte Victor Cowley, son of Walter Cowley, 34 Poplar Grove, 1st Dorset Regt, has been reported missing since September 30. He joined up in September, 1914, had been twice wounded, and went to France for the third time in March last. He was an old St Matthew’s boy, and before the war was employed in the Winding Department of the B.T.H.
Pte Bernard Woodward, youngest son of Mr and Mrs T Woodward, 39 Stephen Street, has been wounded.
Ptc A Allen, Gloucester Regt, who was employed in the B.T.H Foundry before the war, died from wounds on October 25th.
The Northants Yeomanry, twice mentioned by the Earl of Cavan in his official despatches for distinguished service in Italy last week, is commanded by Sir Charles Lowther, formerly Master of the Pytchley Hounds, and includes amongst its officers Major T E Manning, captain of the Northamptonshire County cricket team.
The death occurred at Stratford-on-Avon, on Tuesday, of ex-Sergt Norman Kinman, of the Warwickshire Royal Horse Artillery, who was well known in athletic circles in the Midlands prior to the War. He was a prominent sprinter and an excellent Rugby footballer, doing fine work for Stratford-on-Avon as wing three-quarter. He gained his Midland cap, and also toured with Leicester. He volunteered at the outbreak of war, and was dis-charged in February of this year after a bad gas attack, having gained his Mons Star and Military Medal. He was 30 years of age.
MEMORIAL SERVICE FOR REV. R. W. DUGDALE.
A choral requiem in memory of the Rev R W Dugdale, curate in charge, who was killed in France recently, was celebrated at Holy Trinity Church on Saturday (All Souls’ Day). The celebrant was the Rev G H Roper, assisted by the Rev T H Perry. The 42nd Psalm was chanted at the beginning of the service, and the hymns were : “ Lord, it belongs not to my care,” and “ Let Saints on Earth.” At the conclusion of the service the Nune Dimittis was sung. The congregation included Mrs Hardy and Miss Dugdale (sisters), Canon Simpson, Capt & Mrs C P Evers, Messrs F J Kittermaster, C H Fuller, F Thompson, G E Over, W Brooke, A W Sheasby, W T Coles Hodges, C E L Wright, F W Cooke, W. M. and E R Giding. Senior P.M (representing the Lodge of Rectitude, Freemasons, of which the Rev R W Dugdale was chaplain), A Coaton, Mr & Mrs H Marple, Mrs C N Hoare, Miss Gray, Mike Tomlinson, Miss Dean, Miss Buckley, Miss Stuart, Mrs Stokes, Mrs Stanley, Miss Cope and Mrs Ray (representing Murray School, of which he was chaplain), Misses Hollowell, Miss Sargent, Miss Longstaff, Miss Lines, Mrs Beasley, &c.
The funeral of Leonard J Hopkins, aged 18 years, son of Mr and Mrs Wm Hopkins of Dunchurch, took place at Dunchurch on Tuesday last. Deceased, who was a private in the Devon Reserves, died after a short illness in Waveney Hospital, Ballymena, Ireland. Before joining the army he was employed as gardener at Thurlaston Grange, and a bunch of mauve chrysanthemums (his favourite flower) was sent by Mr Appleby, bearing the word, “These flowers he tended so carefully during his life are sent as a token of deep sympathy from all at Thurlaston Grange.” The funeral service was conducted by the Vicar, the Rev. E P Rowland, and the coffin was borne by four soldiers staying in the village.
Among the flowers were tributes from Mrs Mallam, Mr and Mrs Appleby, Mr and Mrs Dew, Mrs Borsley, Mr and Mrs Tomlin, and Mrs Busby. The deceased was very popular with the boys of the village, and in addition to the above were wreaths from “His Chums,” Pte R Jennings (serving in France), and the Scholars and Staff of Dunchurch Boys’ School. The people of the village fell the deepest sympathy with Mr and Mrs Hopkins in their bereavement.
THE ROLL OF HONOUR.—Mr and Mrs Joseph Lane have now received official information that their son, Pte Ernest Lane (R.W.R), formerly porter at the Station here, was wounded and is missing from September 2nd last.—Mr and Mrs Fred Sabin have been advised through a letter from Pte T Sewell (his chum) that their younger son, Pte Edward Sabin (R.W.R), has been killed in action. His friend saw him fall, and was with him till death took place. The news has come as a great shock to Mr and Mrs Sabin, the latter of whom has been seriously ill with influenza.
SERGT RUSSELL WOUNDED.—News is to hand that Sergt F Russell (West Riding Regt) was wounded as he was leading his platoon into action on the 14th ult, a piece of shrapnel penetrating his left fore-arm. He was operated on, and is now at Nottingham. Sergt Russell, who served all through the Boer War, was called up as a Reserve in August, 1914, and has seen a great deal of hard and severe fighting in the present war.
DEATH OF CORPL L PAGE.—The news arrived at Wolston recently of the death of Corpl Lewis Page, Warwickshire Yeomanry, from dysentry in Egypt. Corpl Page was the third son of Mrs Page and the late Mr W Page, of Wolston, and was in his 35th year. Before hostilities commenced he was a member of the Warwickshire Yeomanry, and was in business as a hay and corn merchant. Much sympathy is felt for his mother and brothers and sister, and for his young widow, who resides at Coventry. Three brothers of the deceased are still fighting.”
SOLDIERS’ CHRISTMAS PARCELS.—The sum of £56 13s 3d has been collected in the parishes of Brandon, Wolston, and Bretford. The committee have sent 74 presents of 12s each to men abroad, and 24 of 5s each to men in England, and £4 4s 5d for parcels to the six prisoners of war. The total expenses were £2 0s 10d.
LIEUT-COL. H. H. PODMORE, D.S.O.
On Saturday afternoon a portrait of Lieut-Col H H Podmore, D.S.O, Northants Regiment, killed in action in December, 1917, was unveiled in the Temple Speech Room by the Headmaster, Dr A A David. The painting was by Mr Charles Miller, and it was presented to the School by the past and present members of Mr B B Dickinson’s house.
Mr R G C Levens, head of the house, formally presented the portrait in “pleasant memory of Col Podmore’s tutorship.”
Dr David accepted the gift on behalf of the School from “ the house which Hubert Podmore served, loved, and inspired.” He added that the memorial was happily conceived, and before unveiling it he wished to thank the past and present members of the house who had joined in the gift, and who desired—and rightly desired—to set it among the pictures of those whom Rugby remembered with gratitude and with honour. They were also grateful to the artist. His was a hard task, but be (Dr David) thought when they saw the picture they would agree that his insight and his skill had been equal to it. He had seen in the photograph, and revealed to them again, what they remembered in the man. Dr David then formally unveiled the portrait, and, having done so. he said :—“ I do not suppose any of us knows a man whose features and expression more faithfully imaged the character within. If the face is ever the window of the soul it was so in him. There was nothing that he had need to hide, therefore the window was not darkened. I wonder if those who follow us here will know from this picture what manner of man he was ? I think they will.”
“ FEED THE GUNS ” CAMPAIGN.
A great effort is being made to extend this campaign in the local villages, and in connection with it representatives of Rugby Rural District (North) and Monks Kirby Rural District Local Committee met at St Matthew’s Boys’ School, Rugby, on Saturday afternoon, last, when the Earl of Denbigh presided, supported by Mr E H Carter, O.B.E (hon county secretary), and Mr R H Myers (hon local secretary).—Mr Myers gave an account of the progress of the organisation, and intimated that final arrangements had been made for a gun to tour the villages during Gun Week (Nov 18-23), when it is hoped that a sum of at least £66,000 will be subscribed in War Bonds and War Savings Certificates.—Lord Denbigh urged those present not to relax their efforts, in view of the satisfactory military position, but to vigorously prosecute the financial campaign til final victory is obtained.
THE INFLUENZA EPIDEMIC.
There are signs this week that the influenza epidemic, which has claimed so many victims locally, is now on the wane, although unfortunately the death roll is still very high. Since the outbreak of the epidemic the number of deaths from influenza in Rugby and the immediate neighbourhood totals 86, of which 61 have occurred in Rugby and New Bilton. In Rugby alone 27 deaths from these diseases were registered last week, and another 14 occurred in the villages immediately adjacent to the town. Thirteen deaths were registered during the first three days of the present week. . . .
Some alarm has apparently been caused in Cromwell Road by the proposal that the Mitchison Home is to be used as a hospital for influenza patients. Residents in that neighbourhood may feel assured there is no cause to be uneasy.
RUGBY MAN’S FOOLISH ACT.
UNLAWFULLY WEARING AN OFFICER’S UNIFORM.
A HEAVY FINE.
A remarkable story was told to the Mansfield Magistrates on Thursday last week in a case in which Percy Thos Tallis, a mechanical engineer, now on Government work at Coventry, living in Cross Street, Rugby, and whose father is an innkeeper in the town, was charged with unlawfully wearing the uniform of an officer of the R.A.F at Sutton in Ashfield on October 23rd. After being arrested by Insp Brooks, defendant made a statement, in which he said he received information that his brother, who had been seriously wounded, was lying in a military hospital at Nottingham. He went there to see him, his wife joining him the next day. On the 20th ult he made the acquaintance at a hotel of a man named Millus, who was wearing an officer’s uniform. He suggested that he (defendant) should put on a similar uniform and be photographed in it. He agreed to this, and after putting on the uniform they went into the streets, where Millus persuaded him to accompany him to Mansfield. He did so, and the next day, at Millius’s request, he consented to visit Mansfield again. They took tickets there, but alighted at Sutton, where he was arrested.
Mr W Gamble, who defended, pleaded guilty, but urged extenuating circumstances. When Millus saw defendant at the hotel he said, “Put on this uniform and be photographed in it.” Defendant several times refused to do so, and it was only after Millus said he belonged to the military police, and that no harm would result, that defendant consented. He went out with the intention of being photographed in the uniform, and then coming back and taking it off. but Millus persuaded him to go to Mansfield. It was evidently a case of a strong mind overcoming a weaker mental capacity. Defendant committed this foolish act, but Mr Gamble submitted that no real harm had been done. At Mansfield he found Millus was wanted on a charge, so the latter could afford to be reckless. Defendant bore an excellent character. This had been a lesson to him, and defendant would take care that he would not repeat such foolishness again.
The Chairman told defendant he had been guilty of a most foolish act, and had rendered himself liable to a much heavier penalty than the Bench proposed to inflict. He would have to pay £10, and they hoped this would teach him a lesson.—The money was paid.
NEW RATION BOOKS IN USE.
The new ration books came into use on Monday, and for the next six months they will be the medium by which the available supplies of meat, fats, sugar, and jam will be equitably distributed among the population. Should the War come to an end during the period there is no likelihood that the necessity for rationing will cease. Organised distribution of food, in fact, will have to be continued for many months after fighting stops. No exception is likely to be taken to the maintenance of restrictions. Rationing from the first has worked smoothly in this country, and has been accepted as the fairest—and indeed the only—method of apportioning foods the supply of which is insufficient to meet the normal demand.
Only one change is associated with the use of the new book. Jam, marmalade, and honey are added to the list of rationed articles. It was originally intended that syrup and treacle should also be included; but Lord Bledisloe, the Director of Sugar Distribution, announces that there is no need to surrender coupons when buying these foods. In view of the quantities in which jam is customarily sold, the ministry of Food has arranged that the jam coupons in the ration books may be used in each case in the week marked on the coupon, or in any of the seven succeeding weeks. The red coupon numbered 1 for the week ending November 9th may be used at any time before December 29th. A customer, therefore, may hold his coupons over for seven weeks, and in the eighth week buy a 2-lb jar of jam with the eight coupons saved.
WARWICKSHIRE WAR AGRICULTURAL COMMITTEE.
The following reports have been made by the Executive Committee and the Women’s War Agricultural Committee to the County Council :—
The work of the harvest in this county has, generally speaking, been completed, notwithstanding the shortage of labour and bad weather experienced for the last six weeks. The inspection of farms has been continued, and in 34 cases cultivation orders have been issued. In three cases recommendations have been made to the Board of Agriculture to determine tenancies, and in two cases derelict land has been compulsorily taken for improvement. The total acreage ordered to be broken up is at present 35,103 acres.
Orders have been received from the Board of Agriculture for a re-survey of the county for the purpose of more carefully classifying the grassland and for obtaining particulars of all farms not properly cultivated. It is proposed to put this in hand forthwith. The committee continues its efforts to retain skilled men in their employment on the land, releasing for service only those who can best be dispensed with ; 1,402 soldiers from the distribution centre at Budbrooke Barracks are employed on the land. Additional camps have been established at Kingsbury and Mancetter. The total number of prisoners employed is 636, of which 507 are in the camps, 49 are billeted with farmers, and 80 are out with migratory gangs. Including the horses at the prisoner camps, there are 218 under the committee’s control. The number of tractors in the county is 73.
The organisation of threshing has been successfully carried out, district committees were formed, and districts allotted to threshing proprietors. Shortage of drivers has somewhat handicapped the work, but every endeavour is being made to rectify this.
During the past season Mrs Bedhall has given 92 demonstrations in fruit preservation, with an average attendance of 38. One week was devoted to training pupils to work the district canneries established in the county. Thirty visited have been made to such canneries for the purpose of giving further advice and assistance.
The appeal to school children to pick blackberries to be made into jam for the Army and Navy was taken up with keenness, and has been conducted with great success. Already 29 tons 7 cwt have born sent to jam factories.
The Women’s Agricultural Committee reported :—During the past quarter the principal work has been the formation of gangs of woman for threshing. These gangs consist of a number of women, varying from four to six, one of whom is invariably the forewoman. Twenty gangs are already at work, comprising approximately 90 women, and from reports already received they appear to be giving satisfaction. We are prepared to supply any further gangs that may be asked for. We have a total number of 406 girls working in the county at this time, and a welfare officer has been appointed from London to supervise their recreation and general well-being. The total number of L.A women trained in this county since April, 1917, is 261, a very large percentage of whom are still on farm work here, and we are greatly indebted to the farmers who have undertaken to help our committee in this way.
WARWICKSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL.
LAND FOR EX-SERVICE MEN.
At a quarterly meeting of the Warwickshire County Council, held at Warwick on Tuesday, Lord Algernon Percy, presiding, the Small Holdings Committee presented a report on the provision of land for ex-service men, and recommended “that the Small Holdings and Allotments Committee be charged with the matter of dealing with the settlement of ex-service men on the land in the county, all the powers of the Council being delegated to them.”
Alderman Sir H R Fairfax-Lucy moved an amendment : “ That the County Council considers the proposals of the Board of Agriculture for the provision of land for ex-service men a most unsatisfactory one, as it does not enable these men to become the owners of their holdings, and that, further, they consider that the powers of borrowing for purchasing land and adaptation should be restored, and that they should be informed at an early date on what terms loans will be issued for that purpose.” He pointed out that under the policy of the Board of Agriculture County Councils could take up land only through the powers of the board to obtain loans, and this depended on the adoption of the system of a perpetual rent charge. He thought it was their duty to ascertain the demand for land, and this information could be obtained through the Territorial Force Association, which had relations with discharged soldiers. It would be the duty of the County Council to find loans for those who had experience and capital to take up land. It would be necessary for the Small Holdings Committee to continue to press for the re-establishment of their old powers.—The amendment was carried.
SHOP HOURS IN RUGBY.
The following copy of a letter, written by a Rugby housewife to the Secretary of the Housewives’ Committee, was sent to us last week too late for insertion :—
DEAR MADAM,—We understand your committee tried some time ago to get some consideration and convenience for busy workers to do their shopping. They are the majority ; they are the ready cash people ; yet all our wants and purchases have to be crowded into Friday night and Saturday afternoon, waiting in crowded shops, getting served in a take-it-or-leave-it-quick style. If there was a later hour—say, 7.30 on Tuesday—it would ease both server and served at the week-end.
Does it ever occur to traders that the shops are already closed morning, noon, and night to the workers for four whole days?
Can we who have twenty minutes to half-an-hour’s walk home and live the same distance from the town sandwich a tea-dinner and a wash in-between, and yet get in town even by seven o’clock ? No, not for a bit of cotton wool or a pound of oatmeal, or any other necessary for whatever illness or emergency is in the home. If we—the majority—have still to be put to this inconvenience, there is no need for the leisured minority to require four days in which to make their purchases.
Why not even things up a bit ?—Yours very truly,
ELLARD.—On October 30th, at 29 Station Hospital, Cremona, Italy, Trooper W. J. ELLARD, 14th Corps, Northants Yeomanry, younger son of Z. J. Ellard, Barby, aged 27 years.
EVANS.—On November 6th, at the Military Hospital, Norwich, Pte. HARRY EVANS, the beloved second son of W. E. & A. M. Evans.—“ Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
GILKS.—Killed in action on October 13th, Lance-Corpl. WM. L. GILKS, Yorks. and Lancs. Regt., aged 22.
HOPKINS.—On October 30th, at Ballymena, Ireland, of pneumonia, Pte. L. J. HOPKINS, the dearly beloved son of Elphinstone and Annie Hopkins, Dunchurch, aged 18 years.
LINES.—On October 6th, Gunner F. J. LINES, R.F.A., youngest and dearly beloved son of Mrs. Lines and the late Mr. H. Lines, 17 Spring Street, who died of wounds received in action in France ; aged 20. Never forgotten.
OLDHAM.—Killed in action on October 24th, in France, HARRY, fourth son of the late Stephen and Annie Oldham, 33 Stephen Street, Rugby (late of Long Lawford), aged 25 years.—Deeply mourned by his loving Mother and Brothers and fiancee Lottie.
PEARMAN.—On November 4th, at Warley Military Hospital, after a short illness of pneumonia, HERBERT CARL, elder and beloved son of Thomas and Ada Pearman, of Ryton-on-Dunsmore, in his 23rd year.
STIBBARDS.—On the 31st October, 1918, at the 1st Eastern General Hospital, Cambridge, Seaman HARRY FRANK STIBBARDS, B.Z. 11286, “Attentive III,” passed peacefully away after a short illness, contracting pneumonia. Much suffering patiently borne. Interred in Cambridge Military Cemetery.—Deeply mounted by all who knew him.
WEBSTER.—In memory of ARTHUR JAMES WBSTER, beloved son of Mr. &. Mrs. Webster, of 9 Old Station Square, Rugby, who was killed in action during the evening of September 28, 1918.
“ A loving son, a faithful brother,
One of the best towards his mother ;
He bravely answered his country’s call,
He gave his life for one and all.
We pictured his safe returning,
We longed to clasp his hand ;
But God has postponed our meeting
Till we meet in the Better Land.”
—From his loving Mother, Father, and Brothers and Sisters.
ELKINGTON.—In proud and loving memory of our dear son and brother, JOHN THOMAS ELKINGTON (JACK), who fell in action “ somewhere in France ” on November 10th, 1916.—“ God’s Will be done.”
“ Just when his hopes were brightest,
Just when thoughts were best ;
He was called from this world of sorrow
To that Home of eternal rest.
Never a day but his name is spoken,
Never a day but he’s in our thoughts ;
A link from our family chain is broken ;
He’s gone from our home, but not from our hearts.
His loving smile, his cherry ways,
Are pleasant to recall ;
He had a kindly word for each,
And died beloved by all.”
—Too dearly loved to be forgotten by his Mother, Father, and Sisters, of Long Lawford, Brothers in France and Germany.