Thompson, Leonard. Died 3rd May 1917

Leonard Thompson was born in Rugby around 1898. We have been unable to find a birth registration although six of his seven siblings were registered in Rugby. The eldest, Daisy was born in Penge, Surrey around 1891.

Leonard’s father was Charles Thompson born around 1870 in Maids Moreton, near Buckingham. His mother was Lily (nee Hughes) from Ely in Cambridgeshire. It is not known when and where they married – the 1911 census stated they had been married for 22 years. At that time the family was living at 12 Union Street, Rugby. Charles was a groom with polo ponies and Lily a shopkeeper. Three daughters worked at the Electric Lamp factory and 17 year old Charles jnr. was a groom, perhaps with his father. Leonard (13) and the rest of the children were at school; a later report said that he had attended St Matthews School.

Leonard joined up in June 1915. He was one of 25 men listed in the Rugby Advertiser of 5th of that month as having been recruited. Leonard joined the 9th Bn Rifle Brigade (No. S/12635). It is not known when he arrived in France (his medal roll index card has not been found) but would have fought in many of the battles on the western front in 1916.

At the beginning of May 1917 the Rifle Brigade was preparing to take part in the Battle of Bullecourt, the final phase of the Battle of Arras. A report found in the War Diaries gives the details:

By midnight 2/3.5.17, the Battalion were all formed up in the Assembly Trenches where tea and rum were issued.

At Zero – 10 the first wave left the front Assembly Trenches, and lined up on the tape 250 yards towards and parallel to the objective.

At Zero + 42 minutes the second wave left the front Assembly Trenches.

No report was ever received from the Coys in the first wave, communication to these Coys after daylight being impossible. Eight of these Coy runners became casualties.

The first wave evidently bore too much to the Right, and struck the new Boche trench. This was wired and held by the enemy…

The first wave, with the exception of some moppers up who found an abandoned Boche Machine Gun which they stripped, had passed on in advance of this trench by Zero + 40.

From accounts from survivors the line carried on in spite of heavy casualties from enfilade Machine Gun fire, but few, if any, ever reached the rear of HILL SIDE WORK.

All the Officers of the first wave – total 8 – appear to have become casualties very early in the day, some being wounded several times…

The second wave went over the line and kept their direction, leaving the Wiggle just to their left, then bringing up their right shoulder, thus avoiding the valley which was prohibited as a line of advance.

Owing to it then being lighter, this wave came under Machine Gun fire sooner than the first wave and also came up against Machine Gun positions which had been established after or missed in the dark by the first wave, in addition to enfilade fire from across the valley.

The second wave was finally held up just in front of SPOTTED DOG Trench which was held by the enemy, and dug in in a line of shell holes about 600 to 700 yards in front of APE Trench.

No one, with exception possibly of individuals, actually got into SPOTTED DOG…

Those (in the shell holes) were subjected to a succession of vane bombs and egg bombs, while Machine Guns prevented any movement.

Later orders were received to withdraw but contact was made with only two platoons.

On the night of 4/5.5.17 2/Lt Round who had organised and held a strong point with 12 men, sent back for more bombs. The party was recalled.

During the night of 5/6.5.17, Rf, Atkins got back from a shell-hole where he had been guarding 2 wounded men, one of whom he brought back.

The report continues with a list of “reasons for failure”. There is a carefully typed list of “Casualties by Companies” with percentages. In the first wave, “A” Coy suffered 75%, “B” 53%, “C” 73% and “D” 70%. Of the second wave, the rest of  “D” Coy 48% and “B” 54%

Leonard Thompson would have been amongst these casualties. A short paragraph in the Rugby Advertiser of 16th June 1917 states that he had been missing since May 4th.

His body was never found and his name is listed on the Arras Memorial. He was aged 20.

It appears that Charles Thompson died in late 1915, aged 50. Leonard’s gratuity was paid to his mother Lily.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

Note: The man on the Rugby Memorial Gates is listed as L Thompson. There is another man, Levy Thompson, who died on 23rd September 1917. It is not known which of them the inscription is intended to represent. We will be remembering both.

 

 

 

Bradby, Daniel Edward. Died 9th Apr 1917

Daniel Edward Bradby was born in the summer of 1896 in Rugby. The first son of Rugby schoolmaster Henry Christopher Bradby and Violet Alice Bradby (nee Milford). He was baptised at Rugby parish church – St. Andrew’s – on 5 September 1896. Their address being 11 Hillmorton Road.

He had three siblings. Matthew Seymour Bradby, Royal Naval officer (1899 – 11 June 1963), Robert Christopher Bradby, publisher (18 January 1905 – 16 December 1982), Edward Lawrence Bradby, schoolmaster (15 March 1907 – 20 August 1996) and Anne Barbara Bradby (30 July 1912 – 15 October 2001). By April 1899 the family were living at 46 Church Street, Rugby. Before 1911 to after 1918 Henry C Bradby and family lived at ‘School Field’, near the head of Barby Road – a Rugby School property. Edward Henry Bradby – grand-father of Daniel – had been a schoolmaster at the (then) recently formed Haileybury College, Hertfordshire.

Daniel was educated at Rugby Public School. He was in School House, an able cricketer and footballer, he was a member of the Rugby School cricket XX. Also a member of the school’s Officers’ Training Corps. He left a the end of the autumn term, 1914, with a commission in the Army. Rank made up to temporary Lieutenant (from 2nd Lieut.), effective 16 Sept. 1916. Then temporary Captain (from Lieut.), effective 16 Oct. 1916.

As a 20 year old at the date of his death he was a Captain and Battalion Acting Adjutant, leading ‘B’ Company, 9th Battalion, The Rifle Brigade – part of the 42nd Infantry Brigade.

On the 24 March (1917) the Battalion was relieved from the trenches by the 8th Rifle Brigade and moved to Arras for rest. The next move was on 29 March to billets at Fosseux until 4 April when they moved in ‘full marching order’ to the caves at Ronville. Operations against the Germans were then made between the 5th and 11th April. Bradby was killed on the 9th leading part of ‘B’ Company in an attack on position where two machine guns were set. A further attack led by Captain J M Buckley and eight other ranks was successful. Sixty Germans and the two machine guns were captured. Lieut H M Smith and 15 other ranks were wounded. Capt Buckley was awarded the Military Cross for his efforts.

The London Gazette cites
“Temp. Capt. Joseph Michael Buckley, Rif.Bde.
For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He led two companies in the most gallant manner, and was largely responsible for the success of the operations. He gained his objective, capturing sixty prisoners and two machine-guns.”

Bradby was posthumously awarded the Victory Medal and 1915 Star. He is buried at the Tilloy British Cemetery, Tilloy-Les-Mofflaines.

You, whose forebodings have been all fulfilled,
You who have heard the bell, seen the boy stand
Holding the flimsy message in his hand
While through your heart the fiery question thrilled
‘Wounded or killed, which, which?’-and it was ‘Killed-‘
And in a kind of trance have read it, numb
But conscious that the dreaded hour was come,
No dream this dream wherewith your blood was chilled-
Oh brothers in calamity, unknown
Companions in the order of black loss,
Lift up your hearts, for your are not alone,
And let our sombre hosts together bring
Their sorrows to the shadow of the Cross
And learn the fellowship of suffering.

Henry Christopher Bradby – April 1918

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

Wilkins, Albert E. Died 4th Apr 1917

Albert Edward Wilkins was born 11th May 1898 and baptised 27th July 1898 at The Holy Trinity Church, Oxford, the fifth son to John Henry and Sarah Ann Wilkins. They were living at 50 Friars Street, Oxford at the time of Albert’s baptism, and Albert’s father was working as a labourer. Albert’s parents had married 5th August 1890, at Holy Trinity. His mother’s maiden name was Kempton, and John and Sarah were both living at 1 Dale Street Oxford.   John and Sarah had other sons before Albert: -: –
John born 2nd December 1890, Buried 14th January 1, 2 years old
William born 1st May 1892, Buried 21 January 1893 10 months
Ernest Vincent private baptism 11th September 1894, Buried 29 September 1894, 29 days old
Frederick Baptised 22nd July 1896 Buried 17th December 1896, 6 months old
John and William were being buried 7 days apart.

29th August 1893 daughter Lizzie was born and was baptised 8th October 1893.   Lizzie and Albert and Lizzie both survived infancy and appear on the 1901 census with their mother and father and are living at 26 Bridport Street, St Ebbs, Oxford and their father is working as a general Labourer.

Unfortunately Albert’s mother, Sarah, died March 1903, aged 33 years, and was buried 13th March at Holy Trinity Oxford. Albert would have been 4 years old, and his sister Lizzie 9 years old. Albert then went to live with his grandmother, Fanny Kempton, who had been living nearby the family on the 1891 census. By 1911 Albert is with his grandmother in Rugby.   According to the 1911 census Albert is living at 19 King Edward Road, Rugby, with his grandmother, an uncle, Albert Kempton and a cousin Beatrice Evelyn Tedder. Albert is at school and Beatrice is at a Hosiery Factory.   Albert later worked for the B. T. H. was in the Generator Department. He enlisted in 1914 as reported in the Rugby Advertiser 28th April 1917. Albert was killed in action 4th April 1917.

“BUGLER A E WILKINS”
“News has been received that Bugler A. E. Wilkins, of the Rifle Brigade, was killed on April 4th. Bugler Wilkins at the age of 20 enlisted on September 4th 1914. Prior to the war he was employed in the Generator Department at the B. T. H., and resided with his grandmother, Mrs Kempton, of 19 King Edward Road, Rugby.”

Albert’s Brigade was, probably, at the fighting on the Hindenburg Line in France at the time of his death. There is an error in the Rugby Advertiser notice, it states that he enlisted aged 20 years but that was his age at the time of his death, he would have been 16 years old when he enlisted. When he was killed his father was still living in Oxford at 11 Friars Wharf St Ebbs Oxford. Albert would have been entitled to receive the Victory Medal and the British War Medal. He is buried in France in the Fins New British Cemetery, Sol-Le-Grande , Grave Reference I. AA. 17.

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

21st Oct 1916. Conscientious Objectors in Warwick Prison

WARWICKSHIRE STANDING JOINT COMMITTEE.
CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTORS IN WARWICK PRISON.

The conditions under which conscientious objectors are accommodated at Warwick Prison were described in a report presented to the Warwickshire Standing Joint Committee at their meeting at Warwick on Monday. The report stated that the men “ will live in the prison, and for the most part work on the premises, though some of them may at a later date be sent to such work as may be arranged outside. They will not be subject in any way to penal discipline ; they will be allowed to leave the prison premises when their work is done, and at other times, with the permission of the agent in charge. If a man absconds, he will not be liable to arrest, but will be reported, with a view to his being recalled to the Army, or, if his prison sentence is unexpired, to be sent back to prison.”

RUGBY BOARD OF GUARDIANS.
MORE ACCOMMODATION NEEDED FOR WOUNDED SOLDIERS.

The Chairman informed the Board that he had that day received a telephone message from Mr Michell, stating that the War Office had applied for further accommodation for wounded soldiers to be made in Rugby ; and Mr Steel, in conjunction with Mr Michell, wondered if provision could be made for any accommodation in the Workhouse Infirmary. A small committee had been appointed, consisting of the Chairman of the Board, the Vice-Chairman, Mrs Dewar, Miss McClure, Messrs Steel, C H Rowbottom, F M Burton, Garratt, and Salter ; and they had decided to get on with the work of the Board as quickly as possible, and meet that afternoon with the Guardians approval. The Local Government Board Inspector (Mr Nesbit) would have to be consulted before any arrangement could be made, and the question was whether the committee should have power to act. Personally, he thought, to the point of self-sacrifice, they ought to do everything they could ; and if it was possible, without undue strain upon the officers, he thought they should place the whole of the infirmary at the disposal of the Military Authorities (hear, hear).

It was decided to adopt the committee’s suggestion, and to give them power to act.

Mr Hicken asked if they had one of the Children’s Homes to spare ?- The Chairman said that was a most important suggestion, and it would be considered by the committee.—Mr T Mitchell mentioned that the Small-pox Hospital at Lawford Heath was vacant ; but the Chairman said that was not under the control of the Guardians.

DISTRICT APPEALS TRIBUNAL.

DEBADGING OF MARRIED MEN AT THE B.T.H WORKS.

Letters from Mr H N Sporborg, of the B.T.H Co, were read by Mr Wratislaw in answer to the statements made at a previous sitting of the Tribunal that married men were debadged while single employees were retained, and that the debadging was done by the foreman. Mr Sporborg said there was no truth whatever in the statement made by Walter Alderman, a joiner, of 85 Wood Street (whose case had been adjourned), that he was being taken in preference to single men in the building department whose work he could do. In proof of that a list of the single men retained and their occupations was given. That the question of debadging was left to the foreman of the shop was incorrect as regarded Alderman’s case, because he was debadged by the Inspector of the Ministry of Munitions.—Mr Wale : Don’t say any more. The Inspector might have been a tailor.—The Chairman pointed out to Alderman that the letters did not bear out his statement that a lot of single men were kept back. Evidently they were not.—The Military appeal against an exemption was upheld.

WAGES OF CHARGE HAND AT THE REFUSE DESTRUCTOR.

Mr John H Sharp, Surveyor to the Rugby Urban Council, appeared in support of an appeal for a further exemption for Arthur Williams, 15 Bennett Street, in charge at the Refuse Destructor. He said he had advertised, but had not been able to replace the man. Mr Wratislaw’s statement that a substitute sent by the Military was told he would be offered 30s a week was declared by Mr Sharp to be absolutely wrong.—Mr Wratislaw produced a postcard as evidence.—Mr Sharp said he saw the man, and made an appointment to meet him at the Destructor, but the man never went near the place.—The Chairman said if a man was so vital they ought to offer more than 30s.

Mr Wale thought such a man should be worth 9d an hour, which was a lot more than 30s a week. It was not a question of wages, but a question of getting a man.—Mr Wratislaw said if a man could get better wages he was not going to work for 30s.—Mr Sharp replied that if a man was satisfied with his wages, that had nothing to do with the case.—Mr Wale was quite certain there were attested men, unfit for military service, who could do this work, and Mr Wratislaw said the Military could send a suitable man.—The Surveyor : Suited to this work ?—Mr Wale : I have to take what the Military send me. I take the goods the gods provide, and don’t grumble.—Final exemption till November 30th was granted.

WORK OR WAGES ?

John Shanks farmer, Cawston, again appealed for his son George (33, single), who had been exempted till August 31st.-Mr Eaden asked for the case to be adjourned sine die, but the Tribunal refused nor would they grant an exemption till January 1st.-Mr Wratislaw : You should have taken the man we sent last August.-Mr Eadon : You sent two or three, but they didn’t like the work.-Mr Wale : Perhaps they didn’t like the wages.—Mr Eaden : The wages were all right.—Mr Eaden informed appellant that under the new Army Order his son would get till 1st of January.—The Chairman : We don’t make it the 1st of January.

Mr Channing associated himself with the appeal of Mrs Colledge, baker and corn dealer, Brandon, on behalf of her son, Sydney George Colledge, 27, single.—The Chairman : We have put him back once.—Mr Channing : If you do to again, I think that will meet the case.—Appeal dismissed, but allowed 28 days.——Francis Buckingham, carter, Combe Fields, asked for further exemption on domestic grounds, and offered to undertake farm work.—Appeal dismissed, but given 14 days.

MILITARY APPEALS.

The Military appealed against the exemption to January 1st granted to Thos Scrawley, fitter, 15 James Street, Rugby, employed by Messrs Foster & Dicksee, for whom Mr Herbert Watson, secretary to the firm, appeared. It was stated that this was the only fitter left.—Mr Wratislaw said Mr J Darby, sen, did nearly all the repairs to the Rugby Fire Brigade appliances, and a blacksmith was also employed by the firm.-Appellant said he did three parts of the Fire Brigade work, but if the Tribunal would give him the chance he would go into munition works.—The Chairman : You have spoilt your own case ; that settles it.—Final exemption till December 31st.

An appeal by the Military against temporary exemption to December 31st granted to Richard Edward Williams (37, married), proprietor of a laundry business in Stephen Street, was dismissed.-Ernest Manners, general dealer, 4 Windmill Lane, agreed to accept December 31st as final, and an order for this date was made.——Thos Arthur Stephenson (29), woollen and rag merchant, Newbold Road, placed in Class C (3), claimed that his work was of national importance, but the Tribunal considered he should do something different, and adjourned the case for 14 days to see what could be arranged.-Exception was taken by the Military to the temporary exemption till January 1st granted to Thos Hubbard Deacon (18), plumber’s apprentice, Newbold-on-Avon, but the Tribunal dismissed the Military appeal.-The appeal of the Military was upheld in the case of George Mascord White (22, single), shoeing and general smith, Dunchurch, to whom temporary exemption was granted till January 1st.-Walter Wm Heap (37, married), builder, Dunchurch, was also given to January 1st, .whilst Chas Wells, School Street, Wolston, a haulier in the employ of Kirby Bros, was allowed till December 1st, with leave to appeal again.—Alfred Webster, farm labourer, Woolscott, was given till January 1st.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Lady members of Albert Street Bible Class and a few friends gave a tea and concert to 44 wounded soldiers at “ Te Hira ” on the 11th inst. It was greatly enjoyed.

Lieut Stanley Hidden, previously of the Warwickshire Yeomanry, has been gazetted Adjutant of the Army Service Corps of the 1st Mounted Division at the Headquarters of the Division.

As a result of the horticultural exhibition held at the Conservative Club recently, the sum of £30 was raised after paying all expenses, and this was equally divided between the Rugby Prisoners of War Fund and Rugby Soldiers Comforts Fund.

Drummer W Newman, of the Rugby Territorials, younger son of Mr C J Newman, Benn Street, has just been invalided to England from France, suffering from a severe attack of rheumatism. He is now in hospital at University College, London.

The parcels sent by the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee to local men in German prison camps this week contained : ¼-lb tea, 1lb sugar, tin Nestles milk, half-cheese, tin sardines, tin rabbit and onions, a blackberry and apple pudding, and 2lbs biscuits. In addition, a warm woollen undervest and pants have been sent to each man.

ANOTHER MILITARY MEDAL.

The Military Medal has been awarded to Rifleman H E Lister, of the Rifle Brigade. The Major-General commanding the Division notifies that he has received a report of the gallant conduct of Rifleman H E Lister on September 4 and 5, 1916, for continuously carrying messages under heavy rifle and shell fire near Guillemont, and he wishes to congratulate him on his fine behaviour. Rifleman Lister is a grandson of Mr H Lister, 105 Clifton Road, Rugby. He was formerly an apprentice in the pattern shop at the B.T.H. He joined up in September, 1914, and was wounded once in the following year.

CAWSTON HOUSE HOSPITAL RE-OPENED.

After being closed for about eight months, Cawston House has been re-opened by Mr C E and Mrs Blyth for the reception of wounded soldiers. An urgent request was received from the authorities on Thursday week, and by Monday everything in the way of equipment and staff was ready, and ten wounded soldiers were brought in during the day.

A GOODS GUARD KILLED.

Mr and Mrs Edwards, of 42 Windsor Street, have received news that their oldest son, Lance-Corpl Edwards, of the London Regiment, was killed in the great fight on September 15th. The first intimation came from a sergeant of another regiment, who, when making a short cut to new lines of trench, came across the body of a young man, who, in company with some others, had been caught by machine gun fire. In the man’s pockets were two photographs of a wife and two children, which had apparently been pierced by a bullet ; also a wallet, &c, all of which the sergeant was able to send to the address written on the photos—that of the deceased’s wife at Rowington, near Warwick, together with a letter full of comfort and sympathy. Lance-Corpl Edwards, who enlisted at the outbreak was a goods guard on the L & N-W Railway, and was 26 years of age. He was discharged on account of physical defects soon afterwards, but was recalled in 1915, and transferred from the K.R.R to a London regiment. He usually carried the photographic in the left pocket of his tunic.

LONG LAWFORD.

MR & MRS ELKINGTON have received news that their youngest son, Ronald, has been promoted to be sergt in the King’s Royal Rifles. He has also been a recipient of congratulations from Major-General Douglas Smith for gallant conduct and fine behaviour on the night of August 23rd and 24th during the attack on Guillemont. Sergt Elkington, is only 20 years of age, and he has three brothers and two brothers-in-law on active service.

STRETTON-ON-DUNSMORE.

MISSING.—Pte F Linnett, Royal Warwickshire Regt, whose home is at Stretton, is reported as having been missing since September 3rd. He is 26 years of age, unmarried, and has served nine years with the colours. He has not been home on leave for seven years.

BRETFORD.

Pte Arthur Wilson, of the Royal Inniskillings, has received his discharge, owing to ill-health. He was at the Dardanelles and in Serbia, where last winter he was severely frost bitten. From this he has suffered severely, and it is feared that it will be years before his strength returns.

AN ABSENTEE.—At the Rugby Police Court, on Thursday (before T Hunter, Esq), Pte Arthur Collins, of the R.W.R, 45 New Street, New Bilton, pleaded guilty to being an absentee from his Battalion since October 14th, and was remanded to await an escort.

MURRAY SCHOOL BOYS’ INGENIOUS DEVICE.—Two boys attending the Murray School—Frank James Clarke (13) and Thomas George Mann (12)—have been working on a design for an aircraft shell, and have submitted the drawings to the Coventry Ordnance Company. The officials of the Company have expressed themselves as very interested in the idea, and are considering the details.

DEATHS.

EDWARDS.—On September 15th, in France, Albert Victor, the dearly loved eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Edwards, of 42 Windsor Street, Rugby.

EDWARDS.—Killed in action in France on September 15, 1916, Lance-Corpl. A. V. EDWARDS, London Regiment, the dearly loved husband of Bessie R. Edwards.

THORNE.—Officially reported missing since October 13, 1915, now concluded killed, Lance-Corpl. CHARLES THORNE, Leicester Regiment, elder son of George and Kate Thorne, of Lutterworth ; aged 22.

Salmon, John Robert Albert. Died 7th Oct 1916

John Robert Albert Salmon was born 1897 in Rugby Warwickshire and he was baptised on 26th March 1897 at St. Andrew Church Rugby his parents were George Henry Salmon and Harriet nee Smith who were married in Rugby in 1892.

In 1901 UK Census John R A Salmon was age 4 and living Temple Street Rugby with parents and 2 siblings, his father George was a carpenter.

By 1911 UK census his name was written as Robert Salmon aged 14 living 45 Lower Hillmorton Road Rugby with parents and 2 siblings, Reginald age 17 Apprentice Electrical draughtsman at BTH and his sister Edith aged 16 and her occupation was forming electrical lamp filaments at BTH, it also told us his parents had been married for 18 years and that they have had 3 children all alive and they live in 5 rooms. His father George Salmon was a carpenter.

His father George Henry Salmon was born the end of 1867 in New Bilton Rugby he was the son of John R Salmon born 1840 and Sarah nee Loomes who was born 1839 in New Bilton, John R Salmon’s birth was registered as Robert John Albert Salmon in 1840 Q4 Rugby, they married in 1862 in Rugby.

John Robert Salmon “joined up” 7th September 1914 his Short Service Attestation tells us that he was 19 years old, when he was actually 17 years old, his trade was joiners apprentice at Foster & Dicken [Dicksee] Ltd., his regimental number was S1578 in the 12th Battalion Rifle Brigade it also tells us he was 5ft 5.3/8 inches tall and his weight was 116 lbs chest measurement was 34 inches with a range of expansion of 2.1/2 inches his eyes were light blue with dark brown hair he was C of E.

He was posted to France on 21st Jul 1915 and on 4th August 1916 was wounded in action and it is noted that on 15th August 1916 he remained on duty. On 7th October 1916 was missing and was recorded as having died on that date.

Medical record says inoculated October 1914 and in February 1915 he was vaccinated.

15th November 1917 Effects – Form 118A from the War Office in London SW7 gives us details of his personal property as “no effects” to his father Mr George Henry Salmon of 17 Lower Hillmorton Road Rugby. Signed by C Harris Assistant Financial Secretary.

Between 20th -27th March 1919, H Salmon (presumed this to be his mother Harriett Salmon) signed for his 15 Star Medal.

17th February 1921 his father Mr G H Salmon signed for his British War Medal

In Aug 1921 H Salmon (again presumed to be his mother Harriett) signed for his Victory Medal.

John Roberts Military History Sheet gives his next of kin as his mother Harriet Salmon his father’s name George Henry Salmon is crossed out, presumably this was crossed out after his father died in 1930

Army Form W.5080 dated 29 May 1919 Statement of names and addresses of all the relatives of the above named deceased S1578 Rifleman John Robert Salmon, it says not married and didn’t have any children, it gives his fathers name as G H Salmon and his mother as H Salmon it says full blood brother R G Salmon age 25 born 1894 it gives full blood sister as Edith May Salmon age 24 born 1895 all living 17 Lower Hillmorton Road Rugby.

His father George Henry Salmon died 1st July 1930 in Rugby and his probate tells us he was living at 17 Lower Hillmorton Road Rugby his effects of £515.   13s.   11d     he left to William Thomas Kettle grocers manager who was born in 1898 in Rugby. George Henry Salmon is buried in Clifton Road Cemetery Rugby

His mother Harriett Salmon nee Smith born Kilsby on 29 March 1870 and in the 1939 register she was a widow living 17 Hillmorton Road Rugby, Harriett’s death was 15th August 1949 at The Hospital of St. Cross Rugby; her probate shows her effects of   £915.   14s.   4d     she left to her eldest Son Reginald George Salmon engineering draughtsman. Harriett s buried in Clifton Road Cemetery with her husband George Henry Salmon

His brother Reginald George Salmon married Dorothy Ivy Dale in 1922 in Rugby.

His sister Edith May Salmon married Fred Rhodes in 1918 in Rugby. Edith May Rhodes died 18th February 1971 age 76 and is buried with her parents George Henry and Minnie Salmon in Clifton Road Cemetery Rugby.

Rachel Andrews
28th Sep 2016

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

Reynolds, Herbert. Died 5th Sep 1916

Herbert was born in Long Lawford in 1897. His father was Tom Reynolds, a Bricklayer and Emma Julia (nee Burnham). They had married in Church Lawford parish church in 30th August 1897. Herbert was the youngest of four sons. Emma died two years later in 1899, at the age of 33. Tom remarried in 1900 to Maria Bagnall. Together they had three more children, two girls and then another boy.

In 1901 the family were living in Campbell Street, New Bilton. By 1911 they had moved to 18 Dunchurch Road. Tom was a Builder/Bricklayer working on his own account and 14 year old Herbert was an office boy.

Herbert joined the Rifle Brigade, (number S/4594) and landed in France on 21st July 1915. If he is the H Reynolds mentioned as a member of the Wesleyan Sunday School, he volunteered in August 1914.

On 16th October 1915, the Rugby Advertiser printed a letter from Corporal Herbert Reynolds:

THE BRITISH ADVANCE.
GRAPHICALLY DESCRIBED BY A RUGBY SOLDIER.

Corpl Herbert Reynolds, of the Rifle Brigade, son of Mr T Reynolds, of Dunchurch Road, Rugby, in a letter to Mr J W Faulkner, captain of the 2nd Rugby Company of the Boys’ Brigade—in which the writer was formerly Colour-Sergeant—gives a realistic account of the recent capture of German trenches by the British. He says :—

“ On Friday night we went into the assembly trenches, 100 yards behind the fire trench, and lay there all the night. It rained hard all night, so it was a bit uncomfortable crawling around in the mud. At about four o’clock the ‘ fun ’ started. We had to keep our heads pretty low to escape the shells. At six o’clock it really began, The earth trembled and shook, and up went a mine and half of the enemy trench ! My word, it did shift some earth ! Immediately the bombardment started. It was hell itself—one continual burst of high explosives and shrapnel. Then we threw out a smoke screen, and the “ Scotties ” and the Indians charged, capturing the trenches easily. Next our turn came to go over. We lined the fire trench and watched our Captain for the order. He jumped up, waved his stick, ‘Come on,’ he said, and as one man we got over the parapet to face a perfect hell of rifle, machine-gun, and shrapnel fire. At the foot of our barbed wire we lay down in extended order and waited for the next advance. Up and on again ! Down again ! The fire is terrible and we must advance by short 15 yards rushes. The German trench is about 300 yards distant. When we get within about 30 yards we crawl, and then finish up with a rush, and into the trench.

“It is in the hands of our troops, but all the time we are subjected to a terrible enfilade fire. We held the trench for about eight hours, but we could not get our bombs across, so had to give ground before their bombing from the flanks. Men were being blown to pieces, and we were powerless. We hung on to the last and then got the order to retire. You cannot possibly imagine what the shell fire was like, but, believe me, when once you’ve seen in it, well, you are not keen to go again for a bit. The return journey was worse than the outward one, and how I came back whole I don’t know. Just outside the enemy’s trench a piece of shell caught me in the back and ripped a hole in my trousers and pants. It knocked me flying, but it only bruised me a bit. We came back all right though, and lined the support trenches. Then it rained in torrents and we got wet through to the skin. When the news came that we were to go out that night, you can bet we were thankful. The communication trench was knee-deep in water, but we did not mind that so long as every sight of that terrible scene of carnage was left behind.”

Herbert was reported “Killed in Action” on 5th September 1916. His name is listed on the Thiepval Memorial. He is also remembered on the BTH Memorial and on the family grave in Clifton Road Cemetery.

Reynolds memorial, Clifton Road Cemetry

Herbert’s brother Frank, three years older, died in 1915 and another brother John was to die in November 1916. Two cousins also died in the war.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

Scotton, Ernest. Died 1st Jul 1916

Ernest Scotton’s birth was registered in the third quarter of 1887 in Rugby. He was baptized in St Andrews Church Rugby, along with his brother Herbert, on 10 February 1889.   His parents were Theophilus and Matilda Scotton and at the time of the birth registrations Theophilus was recorded as a Fireman and the family lived at 4 Argyle Street, Rugby.

In 1891 Ernest was with relatives in the Albert Street area of Leicester and was recorded as aged 3 and nephew of Walter, Willie and Florence Scotton, shoemakers, the sole occupants of the house on that census date.

In 1901 Ernest was 13. The family lived at 8 Argyle Street. Ernest had 5 younger siblings. Herbert who was 12, Francis 10, Reuben 8, Dorothy 5 and Stanley aged 3. Their father was now a Railway Engine Driver.

In 1911 Ernest was 23 and appeared on the census working as a ‘Clerk Piecework’ in an ‘Ordnance Co’, away from home. He had formerly been employed in the Production Department of the BTH.

He enlisted with his two brothers at the beginning of the war and joined the 2nd Battalion of the Rifle Brigade, as Rifleman No.Z/464 in the 8th Division and 25th Brigade. He would have been one of the first Rugby men to join the new army, probably enlisting in the 2nd Battalion of the Rifle Brigade in September or October 1914.

The 2nd Battalion was still returning from India (Kuldana in Pakistan), via Bombay, until they arrived at Liverpool on 22 October 1914, and joined 25th Brigade, 8th Division at Hursley Park, Winchester.   They then proceeded to France landing at Le Havre on the 6 November 1914, ready to engage in various actions on the Western Front.

At that date, Ernest was probably still ‘in training’ with other members of the Battalion who it seems were first posted to Queensbury Pier and then to guard duty at Munster. He entered into the French theatre of war on 17 February 1915, although his obituary suggested he had been in France since December 1914.

He was probably with his Battalion for the British offensive of the Battle of Neuve Chapelle from 10 to 20 March 1915, when the 25th Brigade of the 8th Division assaulted the German trenches and the 2nd Battalion Rifle Brigade incurred severe casualties from machine gun and artillery fire. During this time, his fellow Rugby Rifleman, George Judd, was killed on 19 March 1915 .

Later that year the 2nd Battalion was involved in the Battle of Aubers Ridge on 9 May, when they suffered further heavy casualties, with fifteen officers and two hundred and forty-eight men killed, and then at the Battle of Loos in September 1915.

On 18 October 1915, 24th Brigade transferred to 23rd Division to instruct inexperienced troops. In March 1916, 23rd Division took over the front line between Boyau de l’Ersatz and the Souchez River in the Carency sector from the French 17th Division, an area exposed to heavy shelling.   In mid April they withdrew to Bruay returning to the Carency sector in mid-May just before the German attack on Vimy Ridge, in the sector to their right. On 15 June 1916, 24th Brigade returned to 8th Division.[1]

In 1916, the 2nd Battalion was in action at the Battle of Albert on the first day of the Battle of The Somme as part of the 25th Brigade in the 8th Division. The four Battalions of the 25th Brigade were involved in the attack towards Ovillers.

The 2nd Lincolns, the 2nd Berkshires, the 1st Royal Irish, and the 2nd Rifle Brigade [making up the 25th Brigade] attacked over open ground. … This attack failed completely. … The 8th Division suffered 5,121 casualties for no gain whatsoever, and also had such terrible losses that it had to be replaced by the 12th Division.[2]

Ernest was killed in action on that first day of the Battle of the Somme, 1 July 1916, presumably in the attack on Ovillers. He was 29 years old.

His father, who still lived at 8 Argyle Street, received the news in a letter ‘… from a chum of the deceased, who stated that Rifleman Scotton was struck in the head and killed instantly.   The Chaplain also wrote: “He and his regiment did splendidly under very difficult circumstances. I am sure that your pride in him will help you bear his loss bravely.”[3]

His body was not found or identified and he is remembered on Pier and Face 16B and 16C of the Thiepval Memorial.

The Thiepval Memorial, the Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave. Over 90% of those commemorated died between July and November 1916. The memorial, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, was built between 1928 and 1932 and unveiled by the Prince of Wales, in the presence of the President of France, on 1 August 1932.

He is also remembered on the Rugby Memorial Gates; on the list of BTH Employees Who Served in the War 1914 – 1918 and on the BTH War Memorial.

His medal card shows that he was awarded the Victory and British medals and the 1915 Star.

His brother Frank, who also worked at BTH, was also killed in the war. He died on 9 April 1917, aged 27, serving with the 5th Battalion of the Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry and is buried at Tilloy British Cemetery, Tilloy-Les-Mofflaines.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

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This article on Ernest Cornelius Scotton was researched and written for a Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by Anne Rogers and John P H Frearson and is © Anne Rogers, John P H Frearson and the Rugby Family History Group, June 2016.

[1]       http://www.wartimememoriesproject.com/greatwar/allied/battalion.php?pid=6863

[2]       Thomas Scotland and Steven Heys, Understanding the Somme 1916: An Illuminating Battlefield Guide.

[3]       Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 22 July 1916.