28th Sep 1918. Food Prosecutions


William D Barnwell, milk dealer, Dunchurch, was summoned for exceeding the maximum price for milk.— Mr H Lupton Reddish prosecuted, and Mr H Eaden defended, and pleaded not guilty.

Mr Reddish explained that on August 11th the price of milk locally was raised from 6d per quart to 7d, with the stipulation that if the milk was fetched from the seller’s premises the price should be 6d per quart. This case was different from one which came before that Court a few weeks ago, inasmuch as on August 8th Mr Purchase (the Enforcement Officer) saw defendant in Dunchurch, and informed him, in the presence of a man named Arthur Brinklow, that the new price of milk as from August 11th would be 2s 4d per gallon and 1d per quart less if fetched from the seller’s premises. On Friday, August 16th, defendant charged 3½d per pint for milk, but on the following day this price was reduced to 3d per pint.—This was confirmed by the Enforcement Officer, who, in reply to Mr Eaden, said the reason he was in Dunchurch on August 8th was to investigate complaints as to over-charging by defendant —Arthur Brinklow, manager for the Rugby Co-operative Society Branch, Dunchurch, corroborated, and said on August 16th he was charged 3½d for a pint of milk. No over-charge had been refunded.

Mr Eaden admitted that on the day named 3½d per pint was charged by defendant, who, he said, was a haulier by trade. For some time past his wife had been carrying on the milk business, and the offence was committed through ignorance. After Mr Purchase had seen defendant concerning the price of milk he told his wife of the occurrence, but added that he could not remember what the price should be, She accordingly made enquiries from several of her customers, but as she was not satisfied she wrote to the Food Control Offices. In his reply, Mr Burton (the Executive Officer) said : “ If the producer is also a retailer, the retailer’s price applies, except when the milk is fetched from the farm, in which case it is to be 1d per pint less.” As Mrs. Barnwell was not a producer, but obtained her milk from a farm, the paragraph misled her. She was under the impression that she was not included in this stipulation, and she thought she was quite right in charging 3 ½d per pint whether the milk was fetched or delivered. Annie Miriam Barnwell stated that, as a result of Mr Burton’s letter, she thought that a retailer was allowed to charge 7d per quart unless he was also a producer. On Friday, August 16th, she saw the notice of the Food Committee published in the Rugby Advertiser, and she reduced the price on the following day.—In reply to Mr Reddish, witness said the reason she raised the price from 6d per gallon to 7d per gallon was because everyone else was doing the same. The wholesalers had also raised the price. She did not trouble to enquire whether she was justified in raising the price ; she perhaps ought to have done so.—Asked if she had refunded the over-charges, she replied, “ I don’t consider I made any over-charge. When Mr Purchase told my husband we were charging too much I at once made enquiries.”

The Chairman said the Bench were of opinion that a technical offence had been committed. They were not surprised at the confusion in Mrs Barnwell’s mind after receiving the letter from the Food Office. It was a most puzzling letter, and they believed that Mrs Barnwell acted in perfect good faith.—Defendant would be fined 1s 6d.

Daniel Rushall, butcher, 64 Murray Road, Rugby was summoned for selling meat to Miriam Clift, and failing to detach the proper number of coupons from her ration book, and also for exceeding the maximum price for meat.—Mr Eaden defended, and pleaded not guilty.

Mr H Lupton Reddish, on behalf of the Food Control Committee, stated that on September 10th Mrs Clift went to defendant’s shop and asked for a pound of stewing beef. Defendant cut off 1½lb, and Mrs Clift complained that this contained too much fat, whereupon he said, “ You have got to take it as it is out, because it is weighed out to me.” Mrs Clift again protested, and pointed out that she could not eat fat stewing beef. Defendant charged 2s, or 1s 4d per lb, and detached four coupons, which only represented 1s 8d, as against the 2s charged. Far too much fat and sinew was included in the meat supplied to Mrs Clift. This should have been sold separately, and was only worth 2½d or 2¼d per lb. The point, therefore, they had to decide was whether too much fat and sinew was sold in regard to the fact that the top price was charged.

Mrs Clift gave evidence in support of this statement ; but, in reply to Mr Eaden, she admitted that when she went to see Mr Rushall later in the day she complained of short weight, and not of the quality of the meat.—In reply to Mr Reddish, she said the meat could not be stewed, and it was not fit for eating.—The Enforcement Officer (Bertram Purchase) stated that the primary complaint was as to the quality, and not the weight of the meat. He had the meat weighed by two butchers, but that was only to ascertain the proportion of fat ;10ozs consisted of gristly fat, and the other 13ozs was good meat.

Arthur Frank Hopecraft, butchery manager to the Co-operative Society, with 26 years’ experience, said the fat supplied to Mrs Clift was only worth about 2½d per lb. Had a customer asked him for shin of beef he would not have supplied so much fat.—Arthur Weaver, a butcher employed by Mr H V Wait, also expressed the opinion that the proportion of fat was excessive. He would not have served more than ¼-lb of fat with 1½lb of shin. Fat and sinew was not shin of beef.

Mr Eaden contended that it almost approached a scandal that such a case should be brought forward.

The first case was dismissed without costs, the Bench expressing the opinion that it was quite right of the Food Committee to bring it forward. With regard to the second case. Mr Eaden contended that Mrs Clift was in the habit of purchasing her meat twice a week at Mr Rushall’s, and he usually divided it out according to the number of coupons, and took half the coupons on each occasion. The meat purchased on this occasion did not quite equal the value of five coupons, and customers would protest against more coupons than necessary being removed. He believed a margin of about 2d more than the value of the coupons was allowed.

Mr Reddish pointed out that 4½ coupons should have been taken ; this would still have left a margin of l½d. The proper number of coupons must be surrendered for each transaction.—The Chairman said the Bench took a serious view of this case. Defendant must deal with the coupons as prescribed by law ; but as this was the first case of the kind, the fine would not be so heavy as subsequent fines would be.—Fined £5.

BLACKBERRY COLLECTION.—Warwickshire schools have already sent 15 tons 4 cwt of Blackberries to jam factories, and, should the weather prove favourable, many tons more will probably be picked. There is keen rivalry as to which school will collect the greatest weights.

At a meeting of the Rugby Drapers’ Association it was decided, in view of the necessity for economising fuel and light, that shops associated with the trade should close at 6 p.m on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 7 o’clock Friday, and 8 o’clock Saturday from November 1st to March 1st. The closing time on Saturday to be optional.


Bombardier H A Clowes, of Churchover, has been awarded the Military Medal for gallantry in action on September 1st. He joined the R.F.A in March, 1917, and is now with a heavy battery of the R.G.A.

The death is reported of Lance-Corpl Joseph Fairbrother, King’s Own Shropshire Light Infantry, who was shot through the heart by a machine gun bullet on August 23rd. He was a popular member of the Rugby Police Force, and soon after the War started he enlisted in the Military Police, and was drafted to Egypt. At his own request, he was subsequently transferred to an Infantry Battalion.

Pte George Cyril Slater, son of Mr & Mrs H W Slater, 24 Lodge Road, was killed in action in France on August 27th. He was an old Elborow boy, and previous to enlisting was employed as a clerk in Messrs Willans & Robinson’s offices.

Gunner F W Watson, Royal Marine Artillery, eldest son of Mr F Watson, of Hungerfield Farm, Easenhall, Rugby, was dangerously wounded on the 10th ult, but is progressing satisfactorily. Another brother is also serving in France.

Mr E Hunt, 122 Lawford Road, New Bilton, has received news that his son, Pte G H W Hunt, Royal Marines Light Infantry, was killed in action on September 3rd. He was an old St Oswald’s boy, and joined the Marines in November, 1915, at the age of 17. Previous to this he was employed in the Punch Shop at the B.T.H. He only returned to France a fortnight before his death.

Pte C Bates, R.W.R, eldest son of Mr and Mr. C C Bates, 162 Murray Road, has been awarded the Military Medal for, on September 9th, displaying coolness on a raid, and bombing a machine gun, thus enabling the platoon to advance, and carrying a mortally wounded man back under fire. He was presented with the medal ribbon by the General on September 16th.

Rifleman E J Cox, K.R.R, son of Mr and Mrs J E Cox, Lea Hurst, Bilton. who was reported missing on November 30th last, is now presumed to have been killed on that date. He enlisted in September, 1914, at the age of 17, and was wounded in April, 1917. Before the war he was employed as an engineer apprentice at Willans & Robinson’s, was a patrol leader of Bilton Scouts, and promising footballer.

Lance-Corpl Signaller Joseph Vale, Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry, brother of Mrs F Anderton, 12 Plowman Street, was killed by a shell while mending a telegraph line in France recently. He joined the Army in August 1914, and was drafted to France in the following January. He was 24 years of age.

Pte Horace Victor Wilson, London Regiment (late K.R.R), died in hospital at Birmingham on September 19th from wounds received on September 1st. He was the youngest surviving son of Mrs Ellis Wilson, 41 Bridget Street, and is the second of her sons to fall in the War. He was 31 years of age, an old St Matthew’s boy, and prior to joining the Army in September, 1914, was employed as a carpenter at the B.T.H. He had been in France for 3½ years.

Lance-Corpl W E Blythe, 9 Addison Terrace, Bilton, eldest son of the late Mr John Edward Blythe, has been killed in action. He joined the Army in 1916, and had been in France five months. He was formerly employed as a gardener by Mr J J McKinnell, and was also the organist at St Philip’s Church, Rugby. He was 31 years of age.

CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTOR HANDED OVER.—At Rugby Police Court on Wednesday, Reginald Carver, insurance agent, 23 Grosvenor Road, was charged with failing to respond to a notice calling him up for military service.—In answer to the charge, Carver admitted that he was an absentee, and said that he had adopted this attitude because he believed that all war was a crime.—The Magistrate (Mr J J McKinnell) said he could not go into that now ; he was sorry, but there was no alternative but to fine him £2 and remand him, pending the arrival of an escort.

WOUNDED.—Mr and Mrs Chas Blundell have received official news that their eldest son, Pte Gerard Blundell, has been wounded, and is now in hospital at Salonica.

MRS BOSWORTH has received news that her husband, Bombardier A Bosworth, was killed in France on September 13th. She has received a sympathetic letter from his officer to the effect that, along with several of his comrades, he was mortally wounded by a shell, which fell near the gun. The writer adds : “ Throughout the period I have had charge of his section he has shown himself to be a hard working, good, and trustworthy fellow, and I feel his loss very keenly indeed. You can rest assured your husband has done his duty well.”

WAR MEMORIAL.—A meeting was held on Monday to consider the question of starting a fund for the erection of a memorial to those parishioners who fall in the war. Mr H W Sitwell presided, and suggested the erection of a lych gate at the new churchyard, with a suitable plate fixed inside. Other suggestions were discussed, but it was decided to appoint a committee to get funds, as the form must in the end be dependent on the amount of money raised. The following were chosen as a committee : The Vicar, and Messrs Price, Gilks, Nokes, C J Cockerill, C Olorenshaw, Law, F Goode, and J Hopkins.


ARTHUR BALDWIN KILLED.—Mr & Mrs Chas Baldwin, of the Model Village, have received intimation that their son, Pte Arthur Baldwin, 51st Hants Regiment, had been killed. He was 19 years of age. His parents received a cheery letter from him only the day before the sad news arrived. Mr & Mrs Baldwin have still three sons in the Army, and their son, Gunner Harry Baldwin, was killed in action last October. Sincere sympathy is accorded to them. Their son William was home on leave when the intelligence of his brother’s death arrived.

MEMORIAL SERVICE.—On Sunday morning last a special choral Eucharist was celebrated at the Parish Church in memory of Harry Cockerell and Arthur Baldwin, two village youths, who have recently fallen while fighting for their country. A good number of communicants were present.

WOUNDED SOLDIERS.—Pte Leonard Marlow, R.W.R, son of Mr & Mrs Thos Marlow, is lying in Glasgow Hospital suffering from a wound in his thigh. Pte L N Wincote, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, son of Mr & Mrs Charles Wincote, is in Dundee Hospital with wounds in the leg, gas and slight trench fever.

LANCE-CORPL J WARD.—Lance-Corpl J Ward, who has been wounded and a prisoner in Germany for to last five months, is now in Switzerland. He is the son of Mr & Mrs Thomas Ward, who are well known and respected residents. Writing to his parents, he describes in glowing terms the splendid reception they had on arrival in Switzerland. He adds: “ I am more than happy to think that I only had to stay in that rotten country five months. I pity the poor creatures who have been there four years, but I think they are exchanging them all shortly. I am staying in a hotel, and it is a lovely place. There are about 100 of us at it. I have a nice little bedroom, all to myself, fitted up with every comfort. I think they will pull my arm into shape here. I had a bone broken in my shoulder, but I think if will be all right in time. Cheer up; England next move.”


On the 12th March, 1915, His Majesty the King reviewed the immortal 29th Division on the London Road in the parish of Stretton-on-Dunsmore shortly before they embarked for active service in Gallipoli. There is a widespread feeling in Warwickshire that there should be a permanent Memorial to the Review and at the 29th Division on the spot where the. King stood.

An opportunity for such a Memorial has now been afforded by the action of the Duke of Buccleuch in an arrangement he has made with the Warwickshire County Council with reference to the famous Dunchurch Avenue. His Grace has generously offered to make over to the County Council half the nett proceeds of the elm trees on condition that the Avenue is replanted ; the County Council have gratefully accepted the offer, have decided that the newly planted Avenue should form part of the Memorial to the 29th Division, and have constituted a Committee to undertake the replanting and to erect a Monument—suitably engraved of the Review. It is estimated that about £5,000 will be required for the Monument and for replanting and maintaining the Avenue. Sums amounting to £1,182 19s. 6d. have already been given or promised.

The Committee invite all who would wish to perpetuate for future generations the memory of the connection between the 29th Division and Warwickshire to send donations to their Honorary Treasurer, S. C. SMITH, Esq., County Treasurer, Warwick.

Chairman of the Dunchurch Avenue Committee.

The Home Secretary has issued notice that Summer Time will cease and normal time will be restored at three o’clock (Summer Time) in the morning of Monday next, September 30th, when the clock will be put back to 2 a.m. Employers are particularly recommended to warn all their workers in advance of the change of time. The public are cautioned that the hands of ordinary striking clocks should not be moved backwards ; the change of time should be made by putting  forward the hands 11 hours and allowing the clock to strike fully at each hour, half-hour, and quarter-hour, as the case may be. The hands should not be moved while the clock is striking. An alternative method, in the case of pendulum clocks, is to stop the pendulum for an hour.


BROOKS.—In ever-loving memory of our dear son and brother, Pte. JOHN (JACK) BROOKS, of the 1st R.W.R., who fell in action on August 30th, 1918.
“ A loving son, a faithful brother,
One at the best towards his mother ;
He bravely answered his country ‘s call,
He gave his young 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 and Father, Sisters and Brothers.

BLYTHE.—In ever-loving memory of our dear one, Lance-Corpl. W. E. Blythe, of 9 Addison Terrace, Old Bilton, eldest son of the late John Edward Blythe, who was killed in action on September 2, 1918 ; aged 31 years.
“ No one knows the silent heartache,
Only those can tell
Who have lost a loved one
Without saying ‘ Farewell.’
We pictured your safe returning,
And longed to clasp your hand ;
But God postponed that meeting
Till we meet in that Better Land.”
—From his loving Wife, Mother, Sisters & Brother.

COX.—In proud and loving memory of Rifleman E. J. Cox (ERN), 10th Battalion K.R.R.C., beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. E. J. Cox, “ Lea Hunt,” Bilton, reported missing on November 30th, now presumed killed on that date ; aged 20 years.—“ Until the day breaks and the shadows flee away.”—Deeply mourned by his Mother, Father, Sisters and Brothers.

HUNT.—In ever-loving memory of our dear son, GEORGE HENRY W. HUNT, Royal Marine Light Infantry, killed in action “ somewhere in France ” on the 3rd September, 1918 ; aged 19 years and 10 months. Deeply mourned.

SUTTON.—Killed in action in France on August 23, 1918, JOHN HENRY HOLBECKE SUTTON, 2nd Bucks. and Oxon. Light Infantry, aged 19 years, younger son of the late N. L. Sutton, of Bilton, and at Mrs. Sutton, of Bloxham.

SLATER.—Killed in action in France on August 27th. CYRIL (GEORGE), the only dearly beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. Slater, 24 Lodge Road, Rugby (8th Berkshire Regiment), aged 19 years.
“ Good was his heart, and in friendship sound,
Patient in pain and loved by all around ;
His pains are o’er, his griefs for ever done,
A life of everlasting joy he’s now begun.”
—From his sorrowing Father, Mother, and Olga.

SLATER.—In loving memory of the above GEORGE SLATER, 8th Berks. Regt.—From his sorrowing Grandpa and Grandma Taylor, also Auntie Bid and Auntie Kit.

WILSON.—H. V. WILSON, late K.R.R., died September 19, 1918, of wounds received in France on September 1, 1918 ; aged 31.


BARBER.—In loving memory of dear FRED, killed in action at Ypres on September 25, 1915.—From all at home.

BYERS.—In ever-loving memory of Corpl. ANGUS BYERS, of the 1st K.O.S.B., killed in action in France on September 20, 1917.—From all at 82 Rowland St.

DRAKE.—In loving memory of our dear son, ALFRED HURST DRAKE, who was killed in France on September 25, 1916, son of Benjamin and Olive Drake, Lutterworth.
“ Two years have passed since thou, dear son,
Left this world of strife and sin ;
We never again shall be at rest
Until we meet thee as thou art blest.”

FRANKTON.—In loving memory of Pte. Frederick Frankton, killed at Loos on September 27, 1915.—“ In the midst of life we are in death.”—From his loving Wife and Children.

FRANKTON.— In loving memory of our dear brother, Pte. F. FRANKTON, Grenadier Guards.—From his loving sisters, Sarah and Polly.

HINKS.—In loving memory of my dear son, JOHN HINKS, Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry, who was reported missing in the Battle of Loos on September 25, 1915.— “ He gave his life that others might live.”—Not forgotten by his Mother, Father, Sisters and Brothers.

LEE.—In loving memory of our dear son, Pte CHARLES R. LEE, of the Coldstream Guards, who died in the Hospital of St. Cross on September 6, 1916. Also of our dear son, Lance-Corpl SAMUEL GEORGE BARNETT, 5th Oxon, and Bucks., who fell in action at the Battle of Loos on September 25, 1915.—Never forgotten by their sorrowing Mother and Stepfather and Brothers ; also Winnie and May.

RUSSELL.—In ever-loving and affectionate remembrance of WALTER RUSSELL, of Toft Farm, Dunchurch, who died of wounds in France on September 24, 1917 ; aged 27.
“ There is a link death cannot sever :
Love, honour, and remembrance live for ever.”
—From his ever-loving Brother and Sister, Harry and Annie.

SHONE.—In loving memory of Rifleman TOM SHONE, 12th Rifle Brigade, who was killed in action at Loos on September 25, 1915.
“ We have lost him, we who loved him ;
But, like others, must be brave,
For we know that he is lying
In a British soldier’s grave.
He lies besides his comrades
In a hallowed grave unknown,
But his name is written in letters of love
On the hearts he left at home.”
—From Father, Mother, and Sisters.

SHONE.—In loving memory of our dear brother TOM, who was killed at the Battle of Loos on September 25, 1915.
“ We little thought his time was short
In this world to remain,
When from his home he went away,
And thought to come again.
We often sit in silence,
No eye may see us weep ;
But deep within our aching hearts
His memory we will keep.”
—Flo and Horace.

STENT.—In loving memory of PERCY VICTOR STENT, who fell in the Battle of Loos on September 25, 1915.
—From Mr. & Mrs. Harban and Family.

STENT.—In loving memory of my dear son. Corpl. P. V. STENT, who was killed in action on September 25, 1915, at the Battle of Loos.
“ Three years have past, but still we miss him ;
Some may think the wound has healed,
But they little know the sorrow
Deep within our hearts concealed.”
—Nobly he did his duty.”
—Never forgotten by his loving Father, Mother, Brother and Sisters, and Friend.

WEST.—In proud and loving memory of FRANK WEST, Lieut.-Col., R.F.A., killed near Poziéres on September 28, 1916.—“ We have found safety with all things undying.”

Hunt, George William Henry. Died 3rd Sep 1918

George Henry William [or William Henry] HUNT was born in Colombo, Ceylon, on 31 October 1898He was the elder son of George Hunt, who was born in about 1870 in Long Lawford and whose father, William, had been a ‘Foreman Platelayer’.

George Hunt was stated to be in the ‘6th Foot’ and from the birth dates of his children was in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) from at least 1898 to 1905.  There is no record of a marriage in UK, and as a soldier it seems more likely that he married when he was on this posting.  It also seems likely that his wife died in Ceylon, – unless it was an ‘unofficial’ marriage, however this is less likely as he returned to UK with his four children and later remarried in UK in 1910.

In 1881 the 6th Regiment of Foot had become the Royal Warwickshire Regiment (RWR) – and it seems that at the date of birth of his elder son in 1898, he  was still using the old nomenclature, which may suggest that he had been in Ceylon for some time.  Only the 2nd Battalion of the RWR had been stationed in Ceylon, from 1891 to 1896, which suggests that George may have joined up before he was 21 and remained in Ceylon after the Battalion left – he might have transferred to another next regiment who were posted to Ceylon.

As he was abroad there is no census return for him in 1901.  By 1911, George senior had been remarried for about a year with Eliza, née Thompson, Hunt, who he had probably known when he was young as she was also born in Long Lawford in about 1872; her father had been a general labourer, and in 1901 she had been working as a cook for a clergyman in New Milverton.  George and Eliza were married on 23 January 1910 at Lillington, Warwickshire [Reg: Rugby, Q1, 1910, 6d, 842].

In 1911, George junior had two younger sisters and one younger brother, the latter born in 1905 – all four children were born in Ceylon.  They were then all living at 122 Lawford Road, New Bilton, Rugby, a six room houseGeorge senior wrote that he was a ‘Storekeeper (Iron & Steel Stores), ‘Willans & Robinson’ Steel Works & Army Pensioner’.  George junior had attended St Oswald’s School, and before he joined up he was employed in the Punch Shop at the B.T.H..[1]

When war broke out George would have been about 16 years old.  As no full Service Record has survived, his full career cannot be established.  However, it seems that he joined the Royal Marines in November 1915, at the age of 17,[2] as a Private, No: PO/19175 – the ‘PO’ indicated that he was in the Portsmouth Division.  With an excess of men over those needed to man the fleet, the Royal Naval Division was formed at the outbreak of the war from Royal Navy and Royal Marine reservists and volunteers who were not needed for service at sea.

The Royal Naval Division fought at Antwerp in 1914 and then at Gallipoli in 1915.  It seems that some records survived,[3] and that George was earlier in the 3rd Royal Marine Battalion.  From November 1916 to 1919, this Battalion was formed as the garrison for various Greek Islands after the withdrawal from Gallipoli, when the 1st Royal Marines had transferred via Marseilles to fight in France.

These Greek islands included: Mudros, Imbros, and Tenedos.  George was on Mudros from 1 November 1916 – having joined up in later 1916 when he was 17.  He was, fortunately, too late to be sent to Gallipoli.  On 16 April 1918 he was drafted from the 3rd Battalion on Mudros to join the 1st Royal Marine Battalion, British Expeditionary Force, in France.  He thus became part of the reinforcements for the Royal Marine Light Infantry.

Earlier in 1916, following many losses among the original naval volunteers, the Royal Naval Division had transferred to the British Army as the 63rd (Royal Naval) Division.  As noted above, in May 1916, it arrived in Marseilles, and from there was brought north to Abbeville, and fought on the Western Front as an Army formation for the remainder of the war.

George was still in the Mediterranean during this period, but the Royal Marine Division was in action in France in late 1916 until early 1918 and took part …

In 1916: the Battle of the Ancre, a phase of the Battles of the Somme 1916 (13-18 November 1916).  In 1917: the Operations on the Ancre (January-March 1917); the Second Battle of the Scarpe (23-24 April 1917), a phase of the Arras Offensive, in which the Division captured Gavrelle; the Battle of Arleux (28-29 April 1917), a phase of the Arras Offensive; the Second Battle of Passchendaele (26 October-10 November 1917), a phase of the Third Battles of Ypres 1917; the action of Welsh Ridge (30 December 1917), subsequent to the Cambrai operations.  Then in 1918 the Battalion was involved in the Battle of St Quentin (21-23 March 1918); which was the initial action against the German offensive ‘Operation Michael,[4] and the Battle of Bapaume (24-25 March 1918), phases of the First Battles of the Somme 1918.[5]

Very soon after the date of George’s posting to the 1st Battalion on 16 April 1918, the 1st and 2nd RM Battalions, which were both in the 188th (RN) Brigade, amalgamated on 29 April 1918, as the Royal Marine Battalion.  As George ‘returned to France’ in about mid-August, a fortnight before his death, this may imply that these later reinforcements returned from Mudros, via UK, and had leave, rather than travelling north through France.

After the holding of the German advance, the RM Battalion was engaged in the Battle of Albert (21-23 August 1918), a phase of the Second Battles of the Somme 1918, when it was located at Achiet-le-Grand, north-west of Bapaume and south of Arras.  This became a decisive Allied victory, and in holding the German Spring Offensive, the Allies, and particularly the B.E.F., took increased confidence in their ability to turn the tide of war in their favour.  The Battalion was then involved in another Allied victory, the Battle of Drocourt-Queant[6] (2-3 September 1918), a phase of the Second Battles of Arras 1918, when located at Inchy-en-Artois.[7]

The War Diary for the 1st RM Battalion[8] gives some detail on the actions leading up to and during that battle.  On 25 August 1918, ‘The Bn. attacked enemy positions at LOUPART WOOD.’  Then on 28 August they were relieved and went into bivouacs at MINUMENT.  During August, 46 O.R.s [Other Ranks] were killed, 7 died of wounds, 260 were wounded and 31 missing.

After two days on 31 August, they were moved again ready for another attack.

1 September 1918 – BOIRY ST RICTRUDE – ‘Battalion bivouacked in the open arriving at 5.30 A.M.  During the day Bn received instructions to move up to an assembly position near FONTAINE. … Battalion left at about 5.45 P.M. arriving about 9. P.M. resting for the night in trench to N.W. of CROISILLES-FONTAINE Rd..  Verbal instructions received for attack on following day.

‘2 September 1918 – In action from U10a to QUEANT – Battalion moved to assembly in U10a with the 2nd Bn R. IRISH Regt on left and ANSON in support.  At ZERO (5AM) plus 2 hrs. 45 mins Advance was made in Artillery formation through RIENCOURT passing through 57th DIV. and attacking 2nd objective line running from V25 c. 0.1. to V19 d. 3. 7.  Fighting continued through the day until final objective was taken and the Bn. Held a line before QUEANT running from Y26 d. 7. 9. to Y27 d. 5. 0.  Casualties.  Killed 1 Officer, 15 O.R.s, Wounded 1 Officer, 61 O.R.s (estimated).’

‘3 September – In action – At about 9.30 A.M. Bn received instructions to proceed to an assembly position in V28 a & b with orders to stand by to move at short notice.  At 7.0 PM instructions received to proceed to BUISSY SWITCH and HINDENBURG SUPPORT line from junction of switch & support line to D 6 c. 8. 7. and Bn was placed at the disposal of G.O.C. 189th Inf. Bde.  killed 13 O.R.s, wounded 14 O.R.s.’

George William Henry HUNT was one of those ‘13 O. R.s’ who were ‘Killed in Action’ on 3 September 1918.  He was 19 years old.  His body was either never found or not identified and he is commemorated on Panel 1, Stone No. 1.B., of the Vis-en-Artois Memorial, in Pas de Calais, France.

Vis-en-Artois and Haucourt are villages on the road from Arras to Cambrai, about 10 kilometres south-east of Arras.  The Vis-en-Artois Memorial is the back drop to the Vis-en-Artois British Cemetery, which is west of Haucourt.

The Memorial bears the names of over 9,000 men who fell in the period from 8 August 1918 to the date of the Armistice in the Advance to Victory in Picardy and Artois, between the Somme and Loos, and who have no known grave.  They belonged to the forces of Great Britain and Ireland and South Africa – the Canadian, Australian and New Zealand forces being commemorated on other memorials to the missing.  The Memorial consists of a screen wall in three parts.  The middle part of the screen wall is concave and carries stone panels on which names are carved … The flanking parts of the screen wall are also curved and carry stone panels carved with names.[9]

His father was still living at 122 Lawford Road when he was informed of the death of his son, and the Rugby Advertiser[10] noted,
Mr. E. Hunt, 122 Lawford Road, New Bilton, has received news that his son, Pte G H W Hunt, Royal Marine Light Infantry, was killed in action on September 3rd.  He was an old St Oswald’s boy, and joined the Marines in November, 1915, at the age of 17.  Previous to this he was employed in the Punch Shop at the B.T.H.  He only returned to France a fortnight before his death.

The Naval Medal Roll[11] showed that he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.  He is also remembered on the Rugby Memorial Gate and as ‘HUNT G H W’ on the BTH list of ‘Employees Who Served in the War 1914 – 1918’ and also on the BTH War Memorial.[12]



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This article on George William Henry HUNT 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, May 2018.

[1]      Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 28 September 1918.

[2]      Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 28 September 1918.

[3]      Royal Naval Division, Casualties of the Great War, 1914-1924.

[4]      See: https://rugbyremembers.wordpress.com/2018/03/20/the-1918-spring-offensive-operation-michael/.

[5]      http://www.wartimememoriesproject.com/greatwar/allied/division.php?pid=11595.

[6]      The Drocourt-Quéant Line was an extension of the Hindenburg Line and ran between the two French towns from which it gained its name.

[7]      http://www.wartimememoriesproject.com/greatwar/allied/division.php?pid=11595.

[8] UK, WWI War Diaries (France, Belgium and Germany), 1914-1920, Royal Marines, 63rd (Royal Naval) Division Piece 3110/1: 1 Royal Marine Battalion (1916 May – 1919 Apr).

[9]      https://www.cwgc.org/find-a-cemetery/cemetery/79200/vis-en-artois-memorial/.

[10]     Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 28 September 1918.

[11]     The National Archives, Roll of Royal Naval War Medals, 1914-1920, NCOs & Men, Royal Marines, Han-Mam, Catalogue reference: ADM 171/169.

[12]     Taken from the list of names on the BTH War Memorial when it was unveiled, as published in the Rugby Advertiser, 4 November 1921.  See also https://www.rugbyfhg.co.uk/bth-war-memorial.


Hunt, Albert John. Died 27th May 1915

Albert John HUNT

b.1877 –   Wolverhampton

Parents –Richard John HUNT (Passenger Guard) – Jane Sarah HUNT (Fuller) m. 1873 – Bethnall Green


He married Agnes HALEY (b.1868 Gravesend) m – 1905 at LEWISHAM

1881 census –   Living at Vicarage Hill Clifton age 4

1891 census –   Living at Cambridge St. Age 14 (Errand boy)

1901 census –   Living at Royal Artillery Barracks, Green Hill Schools Repository, Gun Park & Observatory.

1911 census –   In India with Agnes.

They had no children.

He made the Army his career and rose to the rank of Regimental Sergeant Major in the Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery.

Albert John Hunt

Albert John Hunt

Albert J. HUNT fought in the Balkan battle at Gallipoli Turkey and was killed in action on the 27th May 1915 and is buried in the cemetery and remembered on the Helles memorial.

He was awarded the Campaign, Victory & British War Medals.