6th Jul 1918. Rugby Yeomen on Torpedoed Transport

RUGBY YEOMEN ON TORPEDOED TRANSPORT
There were six Rugby men—Lance-Corpl Cyril White, Troopers Ellis Reeve, Baker, Labraham, Cox, and Carew (R.T.H.), all of the Warwickshire Yeomanry on board the transport, Leasowe Castle, when she was torpedoed in the Mediterranean on May 27th. Lance-Corpl Cyril White, who is the son of Mr & Mrs Albert White, 155 Clifton Road, has this week returned home on leave, after an absence of three years and three months, having passed through many adventures, some very pleasant and others the reverse.
“ It was very early on Sunday morning—the Warwicks’ unlucky day,” he informed a representative of the Advertiser, “ that we were torpedoed. The sea was beautifully calm at the time, and the moon was shining brightly overhead. ‘ In the old days,’ he remarked, humorously, ‘ we often said, “ ‘What a glorious moon,’” “ but I can tell you we cursed it pretty well that morning after the ship was struck. At the time I was lying on the boat deck asleep. The force of the explosion threw me completely out of my bed, and the sudden rush of water swept my life-belt, equipment, &c, overboard. I was in charge of number 6 boat group, and after the explosion I got my crew together, and we managed to get three boats down. The spirit of the men was admirable, and as they were struggling in the water many of them sang, ‘ Swim, Sam, Swim,’ and other popular songs. While the men were being disembarked from the doomed vessel a Japanese destroyer circled round, throwing out a dense smoke screen, and at the moment when the bow of the vessel finally sank beneath the waves, dragging in her wake many brave fellows, the smoke obliterated the light of the moon, and the effect was most uncanny, the deathly stillness being broken only by the last despairing cries of some of the doomed men. The last I saw of our good old Colonel Col Cheape,” continued Corpl White, “ was just before the ship sank, when he was standing on the bridge talking to the Captain as calmly as if on parade. Sergt Viccars, whose wife lives in Wood Street, was unfortunately drowned. Together with another sergeant, he was attempting to carry an injured man to the side of the ship, when the vessel lurched forward, and he was swept away. The injured man and the sergeant were saved, but nothing more was seen or heard of Sergt Viccars, a very gallant N.C.O.—Corpl White added that the rescued men were taken on board a Japanese destroyer and very hospitably entertained. After a rest in Alexandria they embarked for Italy, and travelled overland to France, everywhere being most enthusiastically welcomed. While at Genoa Station he met a Rugby member of the Royal Warwicks, Mr J A Panther, of Little Church Street, who informed him that all the Rugby men in the R.W.R in Italy were quite well.”

FATAL AEROPLANE ACCIDENT.
PILOT’S MIRACULOUS ESCAPE.

The story of a pilot’s miraculous escape from death was told at an inquest held on Monday to enquire into the death of Air Mechanic Richard Smith, R.A.F (23), son of Mrs Smith, 67 Sturgeon Street, Rishton, Lancs, which took place following an accident on Sunday morning last.

The pilot, Lieut John Joseph McDonald, stated that on the previous morning he decided to make a flight in a scout machine, and as the air mechanic in charge said it was working all right he took off straight away. The engine sounded in good condition in all the cylinders. Air Mechanic Smith asked witness to take him up, but he replied that he was not accustomed to taking passengers. Finally, however, he decided to take him. He started to fly towards the west, and when he was about 50 yards up the engine began to splutter. He tried to adjust matters, but as the engine did not pick up he pulled the throttle right off, and started to turn to the left. The machine began to nose dive ; and witness, seeing that a smash was inevitable, stood up in the seat behind Air Mechanic Smith, and caught hold of him with the intention of keeping him from falling forward on to the petrol tank. When the machine struck the ground witness was thrown clear of the machine, and the passenger was thrown against the petrol tank. Had the machine been 500ft up he would have been able to plane down all right, but there was insufficient depth at the time that he attempted to turn.

Second Air Mechanic James McCarron deposed that he examined the engine of the aeroplane before the flight, and it was then working satisfactorily. The aeroplane went up all right, but after she had been in the air a couple of minutes she began to choke and misfire owing to too much petrol passing into the engine. The pilot tried to turn as if he was returning to the Aerodrome, and the machine then crashed to earth.

Lieut Edward James Allman, R.A.F, corroborated this, and said when the pilot had half-turned the aeroplane the engine spluttered out as if it was choked. The aeroplane then spun round and nose dived to ground.

Surgeon-Major Chester Collins deposed that when he was called to the scene of the accident deceased was sitting in the wrecked aeroplane. He was quite unconscious, and while they were extricating him he had a severe haemorrhage. He was suffering from a fracture of the front of the skull, his right eye was completely destroyed, and his brain injured. He also received other injuries. The cause of death was haemorrhage. Had it not been for this he might have lived for some time, in which case in all probability meningitis would have set in, as it had in other cases investigated locally where the injuries were similar. Death took place an hour and a-half after the accident. Had the pilot been able to hold deceased back as he tried to he would not have received the injuries to the front of his skull. Witness understood that Smith was up for a “ joy ride ” when the accident occurred.

Verdict : “ Accidental death.”

ACCIDENTS IN THE AIR FORCE.—Major Baird (secretary to the Air Ministry), replying to Mr Outhwaite in the House of Commons on Thursday last week, said it was not in the public interest to state how many officers and men of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Air Force had been killed by accident in this country during the past six months. There was no justification whatever for alarm on the ground that there was an undue number of accidents.

THE FATAL ACCIDENT AT RUGBY STATION.

The inquest on the young Australian cadet, Walter Reginald Pick, aged 22, whose dead body (as we reported in our last issue) was found lying on the line at Rugby Station on Friday, June 28th, was conducted by Mr E F Hadow on Monday.

Lieut William Richard Bishop, Australian Flying Corps, deposed that deceased was a cadet in the 6th Officers’ Cadet Battalion, and was stationed at Oxford. He was preparing to take up a commission, and he left Australia in November, 1915.

Fred Percy Clare, 23 Essex Street, carriage shunter, employed by the L & N-W Railway Company, deposed that at about 3.20 a.m. on June 28th, he saw an object which he at first thought was a brown paper parcel, lying across the rails on the up line, but on a closer examination he found it was deceased, lying face downwards, with his head in the 4-foot way. The Preston train had shortly before gone over the rails, and the body could not have been lying there long, or it would have been seen, because a number of people crossed the rails at that spot. He informed the signalman of the discovery, and the train from Carlisle, which was then due, was stopped. With the help of the assistant stationmaster the body was removed. There was no sign of any struggle having taken place. A telephone message was sent through to London, and deceased’s stick and coat were found in a carriage in the Preston train at Euston.

Albert George Whiting, assistant stationmaster, deposed that the platform at Rugby was on the reverse side to that at most stations. After the discovery of the body he sent a message along the line, asking that the train should be searched. The first-class compartments were searched without success at Willesden, and deceased’s possessions were found in a 3rd-class carriage at Euston. No door was found open, and had there been any passengers in the carriage they could have left the train at Willesden. Deceased was travelling in a Caledonian coach, the doors of which shut automatically. There was no means of detecting whether such doors were shut deliberately, or whether they shut through the movement of the train. There was nothing to suggest that deceased fell out of the train ; but from the evidence witness was of opinion that he got out deliberately, and when the train moved off he tried to jump in again, and fell on to the line.

Ernest Wm Lines, 87 Abbey Street, carriage examiner, deposed that he examined the Preston train when it was in Rugby Station, and everything was then in order. No doors were open, and he saw no one outside. From the position of the body, he concluded that three vehicles passed over it.

The Coroner described the accident as a mystery, and said, in his opinion, the theory of Mr Whiting was borne out by the external evidence. It was for the jury to say how the accident occurred, for that it was an accident he thought they were all agreed.

A verdict of “ Accidental death ” was returned, the jury adding that there was no evidence to show how he got on to the line.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Lance-Corpl C O Meates, Gloucester Regiment, of Rugby, has been awarded the Military Medal.

Pte J E Hensman, R.W.R, of Rugby, is reported missing.

Pte A Moore, Leicestershire Regiment, Lutterworth, has been wounded.

Lieut T W Walding, Machine Gun Battalion, son of Mrs Walding, of “ The Limes,” who was recently reported missing, has written stating that he is a prisoner of war in Germany.

Lance-Corpl Cox, of the Military Police, who before joining the Army was stationed at Dunchurch, has been awarded the Military Medal.

Mr J A Phillips, of St Aubyn, Hillmorton Road, has received a letter, dated June 1st, from his son, Second-Lieut K Me N Phillips, 3rd Northumberland Fusiliers, attached 1/5 Durham Light Infantry, who was posted as missing on May 27th, stating that he is safe and well, but is a prisoner of war at Limburg, Nassau. He was in the 50th Division at Craonne.

Capt Rudolph Elwes (Coldstream Guards), second son of Mr Gervase and Lady Winefride Elwes, has been awarded the Military Cross. He was recently taken prisoner after taking part in the glorious 48 hours’ stand made by the Coldstreams from April 12th to the 14th. His company was eventually surrounded and cut off. Mr Gervase Elwes has sufficiently recovered from his recent operation to be able to return to Billing Hall.

We have received a letter from Corpl F Joyce, R.F.A, of Bilton, enclosing a copy of the “ Balkan News ” for June 15th, which contains the announcement that : “ An Old Rugbeian dinner will be held at the Officers’ Rest House, Salonica, on July 2nd. Hon Sec, Lieut W F Hawkins.” In his letter Corpl Joyce says he has been a constant reader of the Rugby Advertiser many years, and he always looks forward to it, as it keeps one “ in touch with things going on in the good old town of Rugby.”

Mr & Mrs H Colston, 82 York Street, Rugby, have been notified that their elder son. Pte Ernest H Colston, Royal Berkshire Regiment, was killed in action on June 19th. Pte Colston, who was only just 19 years of age, had been in France since last December. He was an “ old boy ” of St Matthew’s School, where he was very popular, and was head boy when he left to enter the L & N-W Railway offices at Coventry. He was a member of the St Matthew’s XV, which won the Schoolsa’ Union Shield in 1913. He had been in St Matthews’s Church Choir for eight years. In a letter of sympathy to his parents his officer speaks of him as a young soldier of the highest promise.

Mr & Mrs Alfred Eyden, “ Denaby,” St Matthew’s Parade, Northampton, have been advised that their younger son, Lieut Maurice V Eyden, 2nd Northants Regiment, reported missing on May 27th, is a prisoner of war in Germany and quite well. His only brother (Royal Engineers) was killed in France on May 19, 1918.

Mrs Ingram, 61 Victoria Avenue, New Bilton, has received a letter from the Captain of the Company to which her son Leonard, who died from wounds on May 29th, belonged. The writer says : “ He was wounded on the 29th by a machine gun bullet in the right side under the ribs. . . Your son was a splendid fellow, the ‘ life and soul ‘ of my Company, and was always so cheerful and full of good humour under the most trying circumstances. He was a very gallant soldier, and in the heavy fighting we had here for the first three days—April 12, 13 & 14—he did most excellent work for me by taking urgent messages to the Battalion Commander, running through an absolute hell to deliver them. This he volunteered to do when I had lost my Company runners. His were deeds of gallantry I shall never forget.”

IN ENEMY HANDS.—Subscriptions to the Rugby Prisoners of War Fund during the past week have shown a marked improvement, £120 being received from all sources. The knowledge that in the absence of local support the men would become a charge on the funds of the British Red Cross Society has, no doubt, stimulated interest. To continue to provide in full for the Rugby and district men in enemy hands £400 per month has now to be raised for this branch of Red Cross work. Fortunately no additional names have been reported to the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee this week. There are now 130 Rugby and district men prisoners of war in Germany.

WAR BONDS.—During the week ended June 29th, Rugby contributed £1,030 to National War Bonds. The weekly quota for the town is £10,870.

ON THURSDAY (Independence Day) the Stars and Stripes were flown from several buildings in the town.

INFLUENZA is now very prevalent in the town, several hundred cases having occurred.

DUNCHURCH.
MRS H WEBB, Coventry Road, has received news from the War Office that her husband, Pte H Webb, of the Warwicks, is missing.—Pte P Grant, Mill Street, has been wounded in the leg, and is at St John’s Hospital, Barby Road, Rugby.

MRS W RICHARDSON, The Banks, has received news that her second son, Sergt L Richardson, of the K.R.R, has been killed. This is the second son Mrs W Richardson has lost. Sergt Richardson was a member of the Dunchurch Brass Band, and one of the best performers. He was very much respected in the village, where the news of his death has caused deep regret

LEAMINGTON HASTINGS.
MISSING.—Mr F Isham has received official news that his son, Pte David Isham, of the Royal Devons, has been reported missing in France since May 26th. He has been previously reported missing, but proved to be away from his unit.

LONG ITCHINGTON.
GASSED.—Sergt C T Tiff, Royal Shropshire Light Infantry, is in a base hospital suffering from gas poisoning.

STRETTON-ON-DUNSMORE.
WOUNDED.—Information has been received by Mrs Fell that her husband, Corpl E T Fell, of the Machine Gun Corps, has been wounded severely by a shell in the thigh. He is now progressing favourably in hospital in Italy. It is just twelve months ago since Corpl Fell had a narrow escape and received very bad shell shock in France.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR.
SCHOOLBOY LABOUR ON THE LAND.

To the Editor of the Advertiser.
DEAR SIR,—A considerable number of boys of 14 and 15 are anxious to help on farms during the holidays. They are too young for the ordinary camps, but capable of doing very useful work locally. If local farmers will let me know of their requirements I shall be pleased to pick out suitable boys. Only one reply was made to my former letter, and there, I understand, the boys did valuable work.—Yours faithfully,
Lower School. Rugby,
S R HART.

IN MEMORIAM.

ASTILL.—In loving memory of Pte. HERBERT ASTILL, who died from wounds received in action on June 29, 1915. “Gone, but not forgotten.”—From his sorrowing Mother.

BLAND.—In loving memory of our dear son, Pte. C. BLAND, killed in action on July 1, 1916.
“ God takes our loved ones from our homes.
But never from our hearts.”
—From his loving Mother and Father, Brothers and Sisters.

COLLINS.—In loving memory of our dear son, Pte. H. E. COLLINS, who was killed in action in France on July 3, 1916.
“ Days of sadness still come o’er us,
Tears in silence often flow.
Thinking of the day we lost him :
Just two years ago.
Too far away thy grave to see.
But not too far to think of thee.”
—Never forgotten by his loving Father, Mother, Sisters & Brother, of 45 New Street, New Bilton.

COOPER.—9178 Sergt, JOHN COOPER, Yorks & Lancs. Regt., killed in action in France on July 1, 1916.
“ Sleep on, dear brother, in a far-off grave,
A grave we may never see ;
But as long as life and memory lasts
We will remember thee.”
—From Mother, Sister and Brother.

EADON.—In ever-loving memory of Pte. GEORGE EADON, of the 1st Royal Warwickshire Regiment, who was killed in action in France on July 1, 1916.
“ Some where abroad our dear one sleeps,
A hero laid to rest.”
—Never forgotten by his loving Father, Mother, Sisters and Brother.

SEENEY.—In loving memory of Signaller BILLY SEENEY, killed in action on July 2, 1916 ; aged 18.
“ Sleep on, dear one, in your foreign grave :
A grave we may never see ;
But as long as life and memory lasts
We shall remember thee.”
—Sadly missed by his Mother, Sisters and Brother.

WATSON.—In loving memory of Pte. ARTHUR JAMES (JIM), dearly beloved son of Thomas and the late Harriett Watson, 51 Pinfold Street, New Bilton, who was killed in action on July 2, 1916.
“ He bravely answered duty’s call ;
He gave his life for one and all.”
—From his Father, Brothers and Sisters.

WHITE.—In loving memory of ALBERT JAMES, dearly beloved husband of Ethel Maud White, and eldest son of Mr. & Mrs. James White, of 70 Murray Road, who gave his life for his country on June 30, 1917.

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27th Apr 1918. Can a Greengrocer Substitute a Blacksmith?

COVENTRY APPEALS TRIBUNAL.

At a sitting of this Tribunal on Wednesday there were present : Messrs H W Wale (chairman), K Rotherham, W Johnson, jun, A Craig, and S J Dicksee. Mr T Meredith was the National Service representative.

CAN A GREENGROCER SUBSTITUTE A BLACKSMITH ?

The appeal of Thomas White (18, general service), Dunchurch, blacksmith, assisting his father, which had been adjourned to see whether a substitute could be found, was next heard ; and addressing the father, the Chairman said : “ Whether you have a substitute or not, the boy will have to go.”—Mr Meredith explained that Major Neilson, who knew the case very well, was of opinion that, although the man was passed for general service, he should not be taken without a substitute being provided, because the firm did a good deal of agricultural work.—The Chairman said, as Mr White’s family had such a patriotic record, one son having been killed and another was serving, they wished to help him, but were they to keep this boy out of the Army until the National Service Department found a substitute ?—Mr Meredith : It is hardly our job ; it is for the Labour Exchange.—It was mentioned that the next appellant—Howard James Allkins, greengrocer (39, B2), Wolston—had been suggested as substitute.—Allkins, however, said he went to see Mr White, who expressed doubt as to whether he would be of any use, because he knew nothing of the business. It would be twelve months, he added, before he could put nail in a shoe.—Mr White explained that shoeing was a funny job. Some of the big horses he had to shoe might injure, if they did not kill, a man who was not used to the work.—The Chairman : we realise that.—Mr White : It would be a case of me picking his pocket and he picking mine.—Mr Meredith : I cannot see how a greengrocer can substitute a blacksmith. He might lame a horse for life.—The Chairman said but for the fact that Mr White had lost a son in the service of his country this man would have had to go a long time ago. They would adjourn the case for a month, but he had been asked to point out that whether Mr White was successful or unsuccessful in finding a substitute, there was no doubt as to what would happen then. Therefore, in his own interests and in the interest of the country, he urged Mr White to do his best to get someone. The Labour Exchange would help him very materially.—The case of Allkins was adjourned for a re-examination.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Pte A E Palmer, Royal Warwicks, of 11 Adam Street, New Bilton, was wounded at La Bassee on april 15th with a bullet wound in his left thigh.

Pte G E Higham, Royal Warwicks, of New Bilton, has been severely wounded in the buttock. He was formerly employed by the G.C Railway.

Pte Albert Coaton, Machine Gun Battalion, son of Mr C Coaton, Grosvenor Road, has been wounded by a bullet in the left knee.

Gunner Norman Atkinson, H.A.C, second son of Mr J H Atkinson, of 37 Windsor Street, has been reported wounded and missing. Prior to joining the Army he was an apprentice at the B.T.H. He was an O.L. And Old Murrayian.

Mr & Mrs J Haggar, of 10 Alexandra Road, Rugby, have received news that their son, Corpl W Haggar, Worcestershire Regiment, has been missing since March 21st. Corpl Haggar was, prior to joining the Forces, employed at the B.T.H.

Gunner A E Moore, R.F.A, has been badly gassed, and is in hospital at Etaples. This is the second time he has been gassed, and last Christmastime he was buried for a time by debris thrown up by a shell. He is the only son of Mr and Mrs E Moore, 100 Grosvenor Road, and was an apprentice at the B.T.H when called up.

Pte Alfred Elson, Hampshire Regiment, who enlisted at the out break of the war, giving up a position at the B.T.H Works, Rugby, has died of wounds received in action. He had been previously wounded, and returned to France last year. He was again due for leave when the offensive started, in which he received severe gunshot wounds, from which he died on April 6. He was of a bright and cheerful disposition, and will be missed by a large circle of friends.

The death from wounds received on April 12th of 2nd Lieut R V Wilson has now been confirmed in a letter from his commanding officer to Mr J G Wilson of York Street. The letter states that Lieut Wilson “ was a most gallant officer, and showed promise of becoming a good leader ; in spite of his youth he had command of a company in action under difficult conditions, and was one of the most capable officers in the Battalion. His brother officers loved him.” The deceased officer was educated at the Elborow and Lower Schools. Intending to become a member of the scholastic profession, he became a student teacher at Eastlands Boys’ School. In May, 1916, he joined the H.A.C, and served in France. Later he accepted a Commission with the 1/7 R.W.R. The news of his untimely end was keenly felt by boys and staff of Eastlands School and by all who knew his cheerful personality. It seems that his battalion was attached at 6 a.m, and at 7 a.m he was sent forward to relieve another officer, and reached the post alright, but was almost immediately wounded by machine gun fire. When being carried back he was full of cheerfulness and of regret that he had to leave the field.

Capt G Gray, Lancashire Fusiliers, who was reported missing on March 26th, is a prisoner of war in Minden.

L-Corpl H Warland, 23rd Royal Fusiliers, son of Mr W Warland, Crick, who was reported as missing on   March 25th, is now known to be a prisoner of war. Prior to joining the Army two years ago, he was employed at the B.T.H.

Mr A G Cox, Kenilworth Home, Poplar Grove, has received official intimation that his son, 2nd Lieut A G Cox, reported missing 23rd March, is a prisoner of war. The camp in which he is interned is not known.

HONOURS FOR RUGBY MEN.

L-Cpl B Holmes, R.W.R, of Rugby, has been awarded the D.C.M. He has acted as a company runner for over two years, and he has been in the majority of actions in which his battalion has taken part. He has always proved himself most reliable, and on many occasions has taken messages through very heavy fire, displaying singular devotion to duty.

Bombardier (Acting Corporal) W E Stay, R.C.A, of Rugby, has been awarded the D.C.M for “ showing great ability on all occasions in supervising the maintenance of the Battery lines, frequently carrying out repairs fearlessly in face of very severe bombardment by high explosive and gas shells.”

THE WAR IN PICTURES.

Those who are interested in war films will have an opportunity of seeing a free display of actual war films in the Market Place, Rugby, on Monday, May 16th. The show, which is arranged by the Ministry of National Service, will be explained by men who have fought, and will take place at 8.30 p.m.

LOCAL MAN IN ZEEBRUGGE AFFAIR.

W GILBERT, son of Mr T Gilbert, was one of those who volunteered to take part in the naval raid on Zeebrugge. He was engineer on one of the motor boats engaged. Although several missiles passed through the little craft none of the crew was hit, and all reached the base safely.

THURLASTON.
FIVE TIMES WOUNDED.—Mr and Mrs Hedgcock have been informed that their only son, Sergt Hedgcock, has been wounded in the shoulder, which has been fractured. This is the fifth time Sergt Hedgcock has been wounded.

BIRDINGBURY.

THE sad news was received here last week of the death of Corpl G W Wall, grandson of Mr & Mrs Matthew Wall. He was badly wounded in France, and died soon afterwards in hospital. He had lately been home on leave. He enlisted soon after the War broke out, and joined the Coldstream Guards. At the beginning of December, 1914, he was sent to France. He was wounded in September, 1916, and was for a time in Coventry Hospital. In May, 1917, he was sent back to the firing line, and saw active service. On March 28th he spent an hour at his old school, where he was gladly welcomed by scholars and teachers. Before commencing his sermon on Sunday afternoon, the Rev A E Esau spoke very touchingly of him.

BROADWELL.
MISSING—Official intimation has been received by Mr Frank Goode of Broadwell that his son, Pte William Goode, of the M.G Corp, is a prisoner of war in Germany, and wounded. Before joining up he was the Secretary of the local lodge of Oddfellow.

PAILTON.
MILTARY MEDAL.—The Military Medal has been awarded Pte Augustus Horne, Northumberland Fusiliers, for conspicuous bravery in the field at Hargicourt on September 11,1917.

THE MEAT SUPPLY.

The supply of fat stock in Rugby Cattle Market on Monday was very short, but on representations being made to the Area Meat Agent a load of beast and two loads of sheep were sent from Stourbridge Market. The difference, as usual, will have to be made up with imported meat.

RUGBY SCHOOL & HELP IN POTATO PLANTING.

In explanation of the notice in your last week’s issue on the subject of the Rugby School “ farming ” squads, Dr David wishes me to say that the terms mentioned had reference to potato planting. For this work a large number of boys have had some training in the working of their own potato fields last year and this spring and the Army Canteen fields in Devonshire. Terms and conditions for help in other agricultural work, such as hoeing, &c, can be arranged later on.

In case a farmer needs a planting squad within a radius of six miles from Rugby School during the next fortnight or so will he, in applying to me, please state : (a) The exact locality of his potato field ; (b) the number of boys required ; (c) whether the squad should bring knives for cutting ungraded seed and a few bucket, if available ?

In working our own School potato field I have found it best to organise a large squad in the morning, say 9.30 a.m to 1 o’clock, so that the boys can pick out twitch from the rows (already opened), cut up potatoes, when ungraded, and plant, and so leave the horses plenty of work for afternoon ; but, no doubt, each farmer has his own method and convenience.

C.P. HASTINGS.
“ Mayfield,” Rugby.

DEATHS.

BARNWELL.—Sec.-Lieut. G. W. BARNWELL, K.O.Y.L.I., dearly-beloved husband of Mrs. Barnwell, 97 Grosvenor Road, killed action in France, April 13th.

BURTON.—In loving memory of ALFRED JOSEPH BURTON, aged 30 ; killed in action on April 5, 1918.—From his sorrowing Father, Mother and Family, and fiancee, Alice Kennard.

NOBLE.—Killed in action on March 29, 1918, Gunner JOSEPH WILLIAM HARRISON NOBLE, aged 27 years, beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. J. F. Noble, Braunston. Deeply lamented.

THOMPSON.—On April 12th, at Dar es Salaam, East Africa, Pte. FREDERICK THOMAS THOMPSON, A.S.C., dearly beloved and eldest son of Mr. & Mrs. J. H. Thompson, of 7 Albert Street, Milverton (late of Rugby). Died of dysentry.
“ He sleeps, not in his native land,
But under foreign skies ;
Far from those who loved him best,
In hero’s grave he lies.”
—From his loving Father and Mother, Brothers and Sisters, and fiancee, Nellie.

IN MEMORIAM.

BIDDLES.—In ever dear and affectionate remembrance of EVAN PERCY BIDDLES, 50th Brigade, R.F.A. (late of Estancia Loma-Pora, Republic del Paraguay), who died in the 103rd Field Ambulance from Gas poisoning received during night of April 22nd, 1917. Buried next day in the little Military Cemetery at Haute Aveanes, Aubigny-en-Artois, 6 miles N.W. of Arras.—“ Pro patria mori.”

BULL.—In loving and affectionate remembrance of Bombardier BULL (TOM), the dearly beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. Henry Bull, Southam Road Farm, Napton ; killed in France on May 3, 1917 ; aged 18.
“ A loving son and faithful brother,
One the best towards his mother.
He bravely answered duty’s call,
And gave his life for one ans all.”
—From his loving Father, Mother & Sisters.

CLEAVER.—In loving memory of Pte. W. T. CLEAVER, R.W.R., eldest son of J. Cleaver, 17 East Street, who died of wounds in France on April 25th of last year.
“ One year has passed since that sad day.
I often sit and think of him, think of how he died.
To think he could not say ‘ Good-bye ‘ before he closed his eyes.”
—From his sorrowing Father and Mother, Brother and Sister.

DAVIS.—In loving memory of Pte. R DAVIS (ROLAND), who was killed in action in France in the Battle of Arras on April 27, 1916.—Sadly missed by his loving Father, Mother, Brother and sisters.

GREEN.—In loving memory of my dear husband, WALTER GREEN, killed in France April 27th, 1917, aged 29 years.
We think of him in silence,
His name we oft re-call ;
But there’s nothing left to answer,
But his dear photo on the wall.
—From loving wife and child.

GREEN.—In ever-loving memory of Pte. WALTER GREEN, youngest son of Mr and Mrs. Henry Green, Broadwell, killed in action in France April 25, 1917. “Until we meet.”
—From his loving Father and Mother, Brothers and Sister.

GREEN.—In memory of Pte. JOHN HENRY GREEN, the loving husband of Elizabeth Green, who died April 26.1915.
“ Sleep on, beloved, and take try rest ;
We loved you well, but God loved you best.”
—Sadly by all. From his loving Wife and Children, Mother, Father, Sister and Brothers.

GRIFFITH.—In loving memory of our dear Son and brother, HERBERT, who was killed in action on April 27, 1915, at Ypres.
“ We think of him in silence,
His name we oft recall ;
But there nothing left to answer
But his photo the wall.
We have lost him, we who loved him ;
And, like others, must be brave,
For we know that he is sleeping
In a British soldier’s grave.
—From Parents, Brother and Sisters (Kilsby).

JONES.—In ever-loving memory of Corpl. D. J. JONES who was killed in action in France on April, 29, 1917.
Loved one gone but not forgotten,
And as dawns another year,
In our lonely hours of thinking,
Thoughts of him are always dear.
—From his loving Father, Mother, Brother & Sisters, and Mill.

OWEN.—In loving memory of Pte. GEO. ERNEST (TOS), Wolston, 1st R.W.R., who was reported missing, since presumed killed, at Ypres, April 25th, 1915.
Though he was only a private soldier
He died a British son ;
He died on the field of battle,
His duty was nobly done.
The hardest part in yet to come,
When the other lads return,
And we miss among the cheering crowd
The face of him we love.
—Sadly missed by all.

WELCH.—In loving memory of our brother-in-law, Pte. E. WELCH, Oxford and Bucks L.I., who was killed in France on April 29, 1917.—Never forgotten by Erne and Ethel Lenton, 64 Wood Street.

WELCH.—In loving memory of ERNEST EDWARD WELCH, who fell in action on April 29, 1917 ; aged 36.
“ We pictured your safe returning,
And longed to clasp your hand ;
But God postponed that meeting ;
It will be in the Better Land.”
—Not forgotten by his Mother and Sisters.

WELCH.—In remembrance of Lance-Corpl. E. E. WELCH who was killed in action on April 28, 1917. “ Gone but not forgotton.”—From his loving Wife and Daughters.

YOUNG.—In loving memory of our dear and only son, Pte. W. C. YOUNG (BILLY), who was killed in action in Salonika on April 24, 1917, in the 25th year of his age. Dearly loved and deeply mourned.
“ The midnight star shines o’er the grave
Of our dear son and soldier brave.
How dear, how brave, we shall understand
When we meet again in the Better land.
—From his Father and Mother and Sisters (Pinfold Street, New Bilton).

 

White, George Edgar S. Died 14th Apr 1918

George Edgar S WHITE was born in early 1891, in Leicester. He was the son of George White, born in about b.1862, in Leicester, and his wife, Mary Ann, probably née Burbidge, who was born in about 1867 in Birmingham. It was probably their marriage which was registered in Leicester in Q2, 1877.

In 1891, George was three months old. The family was living at 22 Birstall Street, Leicester and his father was a ‘Greengrocer / Beer Retailer’. It is assumed that the indented ‘Elastic Foreman’ on his wife’s line, may also refer to him, and that he did some sort of factory work, whilst his wife ran the shop. George had an elder brother, Harold J, who was two.

In 1901, the family were living at the Willow Tree Tavern, 91 Willow Street, in north-west Leicester. George was aged ten; his elder brother Harold was twelve, and they had a two year old sister, Elizabeth Elsie. The children were all born in Leicester. George’s father was a ‘Licensed Victualler’ and presumably running the pub.

Sometime before 1911, the family moved to Rugby. In 1911, they were living in a five roomed house at 20 Paradise Street, Rugby. George’s father was 49, an employer and a ‘Fruitier’. His wife, now 44, helped in the business, although that had been deleted. There had had seven children, but only three were still living – George who was now 20 years old was a ‘Fruiterer Shop Assistant’ – no doubt helping his father, and his sister, Elizabeth Elsie, aged twelve was at school. His elder brother was now married and still living in Leicester.

George’s Medal Card states that he was a Private, Number: 22140 in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. There is no date of Entry to France so it was probably later than 1915. The CWGC site[1] provides very little detail on George’s military career or family, other than that he was in the 2nd/7th Battalion of the Royal Warwickshire regiment (RWR).

Four RWR Battalions – the 2/5th, 2/6th, 2/7th and 2/8th Battalions – landed in France as part of the 182nd (2nd Warwickshire) Brigade in the 61st (2nd South Midland) Division in May 1916 for service on the Western Front, and their stories are broadly similar, and several other Rugby men served and were killed in action with these Battalions.

2nd/7th Battalion RWR was formed in Coventry in October 1914 as a second line Battalion. It became part of the 2nd Warwickshire Brigade, 2nd South Midland Division, and then in August 1915 it was re-designated as part of the 182nd Brigade, 61st (2nd South Midland) Division.   The Battalion landed in France on 21 May 1916.[2].[3] Whether George was with them is unknown. If he was with them, he could have been engaged in various actions on the Western Front including: the Attack at Fromelles in 1916; and during 1917, the Operations on the Ancre; the German Retreat to the Hindenburg Line; the Battle of Langemarck toward the end of the Third Battle the Ypres, and then after being in reserve for the Battle of Cambrai, the Battalion was used to reinforce the units under counter-attack in the area of La Vacquerie at the end of November 1917.

The Battalion War Diary[4] gives details of the Battalion’s activities throughout the war, but the following information has been abstracted for the period before George’s death.

In early December 1917, the Battalion was in the Welsh Ridge sector, near the Hindenburg line. To start the New Year, the Battalion was in training. The Battalion moved to Savy, then toward the end of the month it was at Holnon Wood, and then moved back to Berthecourt. The Battalion strength was 29 Officers and 388 Other Ranks.

During February 1918, the Battalion was in support and then relieved the 2nd/6th RWR on 3 February, who relieved them in turn on 6 February. On 14 March the 2nd/8th RWR were transferred to the Battalion, with 8 Officers and 256 Other Ranks. In March the Battalion continued turn and turn about in Holnon Wood, improving the line and with training in the days between 14 and 20 March.

The anticipated attack by the Germans, Operation Michael,, was launched on 21 March 1918, against the British Fifth Army and the right wing of the British Third Army. The German artillery targeted command and communications; then, the destruction of artillery; and then the front-line infantry. The artillery bombardment began at 4.40am on 21 March 1918, and hit targets over an area of 150 square miles, the biggest barrage of the entire war.   Over 1,100,000 shells were fired in five hours.

Thus commenced the Battle of St Quentin and the Actions at the Somme Crossings. The 61st (2nd South Midland) Division was holding the forward zone of defences in the area northwest of Saint Quentin in the area of Ham and lost many men as it fought a chaotic, but ultimately successful, withdrawal back over the Somme crossings over the next ten days.

In the initial clash, the South Midland Division faced three enemy Divisions and only began to retire on the afternoon of 22 March, when ordered to do so, in consequence of the enemy’s progress in other parts of the line.

On marching out on 21 March, the Battalion had comprised 21 Officers and 556 Other Ranks. In the period to the end of March, there were 30 Officer casualties (some additional officers had joined in the period) and 488 Other Ranks casualties.

The remnants of the exhausted Battalion – and the 61st Division – were transferred from the XVIII Corps on 10 April 1918. Lt. General Ivor Maxey wrote a message of congratulations to the 61st Division, which had ‘… established for itself a high reputation for its fighting qualities and its gallant spirit …’.

The Battalion was moved north to a quieter part of the line near Bethune. On 10 March 1918 the Battalion went to St Roche via Amiens, and then entrained for Berguette which was further north and where they arrived at 10.30pm. They became involved in the Battle of Estaires, and then on 11 March, they took up positions to the rear of the Robecq-Calonne Road, and were involved in the Battle of Hazebrouck (12–15 April), when their positions south of Merville were captured.

On 12 March the enemy were active and by 10.30am all that remained of the 2nd/6th RWR were withdrawn though the line to a support line.   On 13 April, the British artillery was more effective and the line was being held, with troops back in the old line and reoccupying houses. That night they were relieved by the 2nd/6th RWR and returned to Hamet Billet for breakfast.

Several other Rugby men in the 2nd/6th and 2nd/7th Battalion RWR were killed in the period from 11 to 14 April, during this second major German attack, on this ‘quieter part of the line’ [see: Sidney George Hall and William Harry Packwood  and Robert Victor Wilson ].

On 14 April 1918, during this second major German attack, on the ‘quieter part of the line’, George was ‘killed in action’. His body was recovered, but whether he was buried initially in one of the other local cemeteries is uncertain, as some graves were brought in from other small nearby cemeteries, such as the La Haye British Cemetery at St. Venant which was used by the 2nd/7th RWR,[5] and do not appear to be separately identified in CWGC documentation.

George Edgar White is now buried in the St. Venant-Robecq Road British Cemetery, Robecq, in grave ref: II. B. 3., this is some five miles back from the Merville area where the Battalion was in action, turn and turn about with the 2nd/6th Battalion RWR.

St. Venant is a small town in the Department of the Pas-de-Calais about 15 kilometres north-west of Bethune. For much of the First World War, the villages of St. Venant and Robecq remained practically undamaged, but in April 1918, during the Battle of the Lys, the German line was established within 2 kilometres of the road that joins them. The cemetery was begun around 12 April and used as a front line cemetery until the end of July. At the Armistice it contained 47 burials, but was then greatly enlarged when graves were brought in from the battlefields south of St. Venant and from other cemeteries in the vicinity. The most important of these cemeteries were La Haye British Cemetery at St. Venant (65 graves), used by the 2nd/7th Royal Warwicks and 2nd/8th Worcesters between April and August 1918, and Carvin British Cemetery, Mont-Bernenchon (54 graves), used by fighting units and field ambulances during the same period.

When his temporary wooden cross was replaced by a gravestone, there was no family request for an inscription.

George Edgar S WHITE is also remembered on the Rugby Memorial Gates. His Medal Card shows that he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

– – – – – –

 

This article on George Edgar WHITE was researched and written for a Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the RFHG, January 2018.

[1]       Military career from CWGC, https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/54980/wilson,-robert-victor/.

[2]         http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/order-of-battle-of-divisions/61st-2nd-south-midland-division/.

[3]       Based on: https://www.forces-war-records.co.uk/units/316/royal-warwickshire-regiment/.

[4]       WWI War Diaries, 1914-1920, 2/7 Bn., Royal Warwickshire Regiment, 61st Division,

[5]       The 2nd/7th RWR were operating with the 2nd/6th RWR, and thus on 13 April 1918 the 2nd/6th RWR was combined for some days with the 24th Entrenching Battalion as a composite Battalion and then relieved the 2nd/7th RWR.

13th Oct 1917. War Prisoners’ Food Parcels – Serious Increase in Cost.

WAR PRISONERS’ FOOD PARCELS.
SERIOUS INCREASE IN COST.
NEED FOR FUNDS GREATER THAN EVER.

The standard parcels of food which are sent to the Rugby and district men who are prisoners of war in Germany have this week been increased in cost from 6s to 8s each owing to the continual rise in price of all commodities and materials. As six of these parcels are sent in the course of each month to every man, in addition to 26lbs of bread, costing 7s 6d, it will thus be seen that, instead of an expenditure of £2 3s 6d per man per month, the cost is now £2 15s 6d. There has been a further addition to the list this week, the total number of men in the care of the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee being now 78. The cost to feed these men is, therefore, £216 9s per month. About one-third only of this amount is guaranteed, the remainder having to be met by general subscriptions. Without these parcels of food the prisoners of war would be in a perpetual state of semi-starvation, as the food supplied to them by the German authorities is not sufficient for their proper nourishment, as well as being unpalatable. More funds are, therefore, needed to enable the Rugby Committee to continue the regular supply of parcels so vitally necessary to our unfortunate countrymen. Practically all the parcels reach their destination, and are acknowledged with gratitude. One can help by sending a donation, becoming a regular subscriber, organising concerts, whist drives, &c, throughout the winter months, or “ adopting ” a prisoner.

The Hon Secretary, Mr J Reginald Barker, will, gratefully acknowledge all contributions, which should be sent to him at the registered Office of the Committee, 9 Regent Street, Rugby.

“ FRANCE’S DAY ” AT RUGBY.

The flag day in aid of the French Red Cross, held at Rugby on Saturday last, was crowned with success ; and, in view of the fact that it was a town effort only, the financial result, which was in advance of past flag days confined to the town, was very gratifying. The weather in the early hours was very miserable for the first relay of workers ; and although the rest of the day was bright, it was very cold. There were several varieties of emblems, and these were sold by 150 fair helpers, some of whom, with a brief respite for meals, remained at their posts from 5.30 a.m till dark. The district superintendents were : Mrs A G Salter, Mrs J R Barker, Miss O’Beirne, Miss Hinks, Miss B Wood, Miss G Woods, Miss D Roberts, Miss Robbins, and Miss Baillie. Four of the sellers—Misses Jessie Mills, P Batchelor, P Hinks, and G Hinks—were attractively dressed in French national costume. The highest individual amount was yielded by Miss Priors box (£3 9s 2d), and Miss D Eadon was second with £3 0s 6½d.

Mr J J McKinnell (chairman of the Urban Council) was president of “ The Day,” the organisation of which was again in the hands of Mr J R Barker, and he was assisted at the supply depot, Bonn Buildings, by Mrs B B Dickinson, Mrs Barker, and Miss Robbins. The counting of the money was supervised by Mr R P Mason, manager of the London City and Midland Bank, and he was assisted by Mr J Ferry and the Hon Organiser.

The amount realised was £92 0s. 5d.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Sergt A G Barford. M.G.C, has received the following from the Major-General Commanding his Division :— “ I have read with great pleasure the report of your Regimental Commander and Brigade Commander regarding your gallant conduct and devotion to duty in the field on August 10, 1917, during an attack on Westhoek Ridge.” Sergt A G Barford joined Kitcheners’s Army in August, 1914, and has been out in France just over two years. He is a son of the late Mr George Stops Barford, of Plumpton Manor, Northamptonshire, and of Mrs Wells, Claybrooke, and grandson of the late Mr George Eagles, of Little Lawford.

Lance-Corpl Bert Warden, R.W.R, has been posted as missing since August 27th. He was 20 years of age, a member of “ E ” Company, and had been in France 2½ years. For the last two years he acted as a Lewis gunner, and had been wounded four times. He fought on practically the whole length of line from Ypres to St Quentin, and participated in the Battle of Loos, the Somme offensive, and most this year’s fighting round Ypres. He was an Old Murrayian.

On October 4th Second-Lieut E W White, who at the time of joining up was a clerk in the National Provincial Bank, Rugby, was killed in action. He joined as a private, but he was soon picked out by his Colonel as a promising officer, and after training received his commission. His home was at Burton-on-Trent.

AN URBAN COUNCIL EMPLOYEE KILLED.

Mrs A M Thompson, of 49 Union Street, Rugby, has received official notification that her husband, Pte L Thompson, of the Yorkshire Regiment, was killed by a shell while in action on September 23rd. He would have been 33 years of age in November, and had been a number of years in the employ of the Urban Council as a dustman, in which capacity he was an excellent workman and much respected. He joined up in September, 1916, and had been abroad about four months. He leaves a widow and four little children. Mrs Thompson has received a sympathetic letter from the Major commanding, and the sad news has been also conveyed by Pte F C Walton, a comrade, who hails from Thurlaston, and has since writing been wounded.

PTE W HOUGHTON KILLED.

In a letter received this week by Mrs Houghton, the Chaplain of a clearing station in France communicates the sad information that her husband, Pte W Houghton, Machine Gun Corps, died on October 4th. When brought in he was suffering from a wound in the neck. He was in no pain, and quite conscious and cheerful, and in the ordinary way of things it did not appear to be a severe wound. Unfortunately he died in the operating theatre after an operation had been performed. Pte Houghton was 31 years of age, and was the youngest son of the late Mr Houghton and of Mrs Houghton, Queen Street, Rugby. For many years he had been employed by the Rugby Co-operative Society, and was manager successively of the branches at Kilsby, Hillmorton, and Bilton. He joined the Warwicks on November 7, 1916, and had been in France nine months. He leaves a widow and one child, now residing at Eastleigh, Southampton.

LOCAL FOOD CONTROL COMMITTEES.

Assisted by a capable and enthusiastic band of workers, Mr F M Burton, the executive officer for the Rugby Urban District, has made considerable progress with the organisation of the local food control machinery. So far 91 sugar retailers, 61 potato retailers, and seven wholesale dealers in potatoes have registered, and certificates authorising the purchase of sugar have been issued to caterers, institutions, and manufacturers.

The number of persons to be catered for under the householders’ rationing system is approximately 21,000, and the first batch of sugar cards was dispatched through the post on Wednesday. Unfortunately, however, the Executive Officer and his staff have been greatly handicapped by the careless manner in which some of the application forms have been filled in. In many instances—and these cases are, strangely enough, not confined to the least educated section of the community—the applicant has failed to fill in his or her address, while important details have been omitted from other forms. In those cases where children are attending school the address and other details can be easily ascertained, but in others the task of obtaining the particulars is a formidable one. In cases where the address has been given, but the form otherwise filled up inaccurately, the householders will be visited by canvassers, who have kindly volunteered their services. In some instances applicants have added particulars which are not required by the regulations. One person has written across his form an indignant protest, in which he asks : “ Are we living in Germany ?” and continues : “ Want of sugar will not make England give up its liberty. By what right should a man be required to give occupation ? Prussian ways and systems will not be tolerated in this country.” Another applicant has added to the particulars concerning her eight months old daughter the information, “ Bottle fed ” ; while in another case the early arrival of an increase in the family is clearly foreshadowed. A number of ladies and gentlemen have placed their services at the disposal of the Executive Officer, and the Assembly Room at the Benn Buildings presents the appearance of a hive of industry.

THE RURAL DISTRICT.

Mr F Fellows; executive officer for the Rural District Control Committee, and his assistants have also made satisfactory progress, and the task of issuing the sugar cards is now in hand. Fortunately the application forms in this district have, on the whole, been correctly filled in, and the number of incomplete forms has been negligible, although one applicant followed the instructions too literally, and addressed his application to the Paddington Committee, the name on the model form posted in the district for the guidance of householders. The approximate number of consumers in the district is 17,750. Sixty-six sugar retailers, 30 potato retailers, and 13 wholesale dealers in potatoes have been registered.

CHEESE MAKING.

The Agricultural Committee reported that the cheese making classes had been most successful. At Kineton 19 students attended, and 16 of these were now making cheese at home. At Pillerton 13 attended, of whom 12 are now regularly making cheese. They asked the Council to sanction cheese making classes for 1918-19 at a cost not exceeding £100.

DEATHS.

BRADSHAW.—Killed in action in France on September 24, 1917, Pte. ERNEST BRADSHAW, R.W.R., dearly beloved husband of Eilen Bradshaw, 39 Wood Street, and son of Mr. J. Bradshaw, 8 Newbold Road, Rugby; aged 37.

CUFAUDE.—In loving memory of 45459 EDWARD HENRY CUFAUDE, of the 9th Suffolk Regiment, son of the late John Cufaude, solicitor ; killed in action September 22, 1917, near Hill 70 ; aged 26.

PEARCE.—In loving memory of Gunner H. C. PEARCE, R.F.A., who fell in action on September 11, 1917.
“ Sleep on, loved one, in your far-off grave :
A grave I may never see ;
But as long as life and memory lasts
You will be always dear to me.”
—Alice.

SAVILLE.—On September 28th, near Ypres, WALTER STANLEY SAVILLE, eldest son of the late Mr. Walter John & Mrs. Saville, 93 Clifton Rd., Rugby; aged 22.

TAYLOR.—In ever-loving memory of our dear son and brother, Pte. W. TAYLOR, aged 26 years, who was killed in France.—They miss him most who loved him best.—From his sorrowing Father, Mother, Brother and Sisters.

THOMPSON.—In loving memory of my dear husband, Pte. L. THOMPSON, 49 Union Street, who was killed in action on September 23, 1917 : aged 33 years.—“God takes our loved one from our home, but never from our hearts.”—From his loving Wife & Children.

IN MEMORIAM.

BARBER.—In ever-loving memory of DAD, who passed away suddenly on June 26th, 1913, and of dear brother FRED, killed in action on September 25, 1915.—From Mother, Brothers and Sisters.

CHAMBERS.—Gunner E. CHAMBERS, son of Mr. & Mrs. E. Chambers, of Wolston, died of wounds, Oct. 11, 1915.
“ Rest on, dear brother, in a far-off grave :
A grave we may never see ;
But so long as life and memory lasts
We shall always remember thee.”
—Father, Mother, Sisters and Brothers.

DYKE.—In loving memory of Corpl. OTHELLO DYKE, of the R.W.R., who was killed in action on October 12, 1916.—“ Peace, perfect peace,”—Not forgotten by his loving Sisters and Brothers.

WILKINS.—In loving memory of our dear brother, Pte. R. G. WILKINS, killed in action on October 12, 1916.
“ Re-union is our abiding hope,
Only those who have loved and lost
Can know the bitterness of gone.”
—Sadly missed by EVELYN and WINIFRED.

WILKINS.—In loving memory of my deadly-beloved son, Pte. REGINALD GERALD WILKINS, R.W.R., late, of 32 Regent Street, previously reported missing, now believed killed ; aged 21 years.

 

White, Albert James. Died 1st Jul 1917

The Rugby Advertiser stated on Saturday, July 21st 1917 that news had been received that Mr A J White, late of 70 Murray Road, Rugby was killed on active service in France on June 30th. He was serving with the Notts and Derbyshire Regiment, to which he was transferred from The South Notts Hussars.

He was an Old Murrayian and, after spending some time in the building trade, entered the service of the Prudential Assurance Company and some three years later was promoted to Assistant Superintendent at Stamford.

Albert James White

Albert (Bert) James White was the eldest son of the seven children of James and Elizabeth White. Born in 1886, Bert lived with his wife Ethel, and 22 months old son, Norman, at 8 Wyvern Terrace, Melton Mowbray and was 31 at the time of his death.

Colin White, Bert’s nephew, who lives in Braunston, and who prepared this article, has a collection of letters that were exchanged between his father, Frank, and Bert during the six months leading up to Bert’s death.

At the time, Frank was in the Royal Army Medical Corps at Felixstowe. Colin also has a collection of photographs of Bert taken before and during the war when he was being trained in the cavalry.

After enlisting, Bert soon found himself being transferred from the cavalry and on a long journey to the front line in France. One of his letters dated 21st January 1917 reads: “We arrived in France on the 4th, stopped 3 nights at base camp and, issued with more kit, then moved by train for 27 hours – with stops of course; then a night at a rest camp and onto here next day. Well laddy we are right up the line here at a training base a few miles behind the fighting line! We can hear the big guns day and night. You see Frank we, the 6th Sherwood Forresters are defending this part of the fighting line. We are in a village and billeted in old barns. It’s a very rough life out here with the weather and up to our nests in mud and slush and we have to get cleaned up for all parades. I don’t at all like the Infantry after the Cavalry I can tell you, but it’s too late now to transfer to the Engineers so I, like the other lads, must stick at it and make the best of it.”

His letter continues and ends: “Bye bye old man and all the bests of luck to you. Fondest love from your loving brother, Bert xx”

There followed regular exchanges during the next five months, including on the 7th June: “In army rest camp with a huge carbuncle on my neck and am run down, having been ordered out of line and sent to hospital over night and had a nice car ride to here the following day. Neck OK but feeling very weak. Very rough time this last fortnight.”

Then finally on 26th June a formal “Field Service Card” from Bert: “I am quite well – letter follows at first opportunity.”

Then a letter dated 5th July to Bert’s wife, Ethel, telling her that Bert was hit by a shell splinter, from a trench mortar, late on the night of 30th June and died almost immediately, stating “Ever since he joined us from the cavalry he has done splendidly, always ready, always brave, he was some of those men whom one could trust to go anywhere and do anything.”

This was followed by a letter from his pal saying: “He was doing his turn on sentry duty with another pal at about 11.00 on the night of the 30th – a shell dropped close to them, catching Bert – he died within 10 minutes. I was sent for at once but on my arrival I found that nothing on earth could save him. I will send on to you his pocket book, etc by registered post. Yours truly A Weston.”

Bert is buried in the Fosse 10 Communal Cemetery Extension near Sains-en-Gohelle (8 miles from Bethune and north of Arras). Inscribed on the original wooden cross: “242582 Private AJ White 1st Battalion 6th Sherwood Foresters”, later replaced by a headstone stating “Notts and Derby Regiment”.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

2nd Sep 1916. The Recruiting Officer Asks For Information

Rugby Advertiser, 2 September, 1916.
THE RECRUITING OFFICER, RUGBY, ASKS For INFORMATION
regarding the following men, as to whether they
(a) Have joined the Army ;
(b) Are excepted from the provisions of the Military Service Acts, 1916 ;
(c) Are in possession of a definite certificate or badge exempting them from liability for Military Service
(d) Are in a reserved occupation ;
(e) Have moved to another district ;
or any other information concerning them.
The above information is required to complete records in Recruiting Offices, and any communication will be treated in strict confidence.

LIST OF MEN FROM THE RUGBY SUB-AREA UNDER THE FIRST MILITARY SERVICE ACT. 1916.
The following are their last-known addresses :-
O. PICKLES, Railway Hotel, Rugby, age 28.
F. SMITH, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 29.
W. HEWITT, “ Zotha House,” Park Road, Rugby, age 30.
J. W. WALKER, 37 Wood Street, Rugby, age 30.
J. ROSS, Spring Hill, Rugby, age 18.
O. JACKSON, White Lion, Warwick Street, Rugby, age 38.
H. FRANCIS [or HEENEY], 186 Murray Road, Rugby, age 39.
T. W. ELLERTON, Bridget Street, New Bilton, age 24.
A. E. CAPEWELL, Wharf Farm, Hillmorton, age 34.
G. COOPER, Radford, age 39.
W. FIELD, Mount Pleasant, Stockton, age 27.
J. H. CARTER, 16 Oxford Street, Rugby, age 29, married.
J. TOMSON, 8 Abbey Street, Rugby, age 31, married.
A. H. WEST, Bishops Itchington, age 31, married.
A. THOROGOOD, “ Alpina,” Banbury Road, Southam, aged 32, married.
W. POMFRET, 49 James Street, Rugby, age 21, married.
A. A. BALL, Whitnash, aged 38, married.
W. CALLODENE, Licensed Hawker, Dodson’s Field, Rugby, age 40, married.
F. C. BATES, Station Road. Rugby, age 40, Rugby, married.
J. E. CRAMP, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 24, married.
J. W. BOSTON, 40 Railway Terrace, Rugby, age 40, married.
WM GEORGE TRUSSLER, 14 Sheep Street, Rugby, age 31, married.
G. THOMAS, 2 Elborow Street, Rugby, age 34, single.
W. H. BRERETON, 11 Rowland Street, Rugby, age 25, single.
P. COWLEY, 91 Abbey Street, Rugby, age 22, married.
J. W. WILLIAMS, 21 Worcester Street, Rugby, age 22, married.
T. BOYLES, 18 Gas Street, Rugby, age 26, married.
P. JOHNSON, Long Itchington, age 28, single.
W. T. HARREN, Butlers Marston, Kineton, age 24, married.
JOHN FITZSIMMONS, 121 Oxford Street, Rugby, age 32, married.
A. ARTHUR, 51 Manor Road, Rugby, age 37, married.
A. K. FRAZER, 3 Castle Street, Rugby, age 36, married.
H. SMITH. 36 Poplar Grove, Rugby, age 37, married.
H. WILSON, 50 King Edward Road, Rugby, age 28, married.

LIST OF MEN FROM THE RUGBY SUB-AREA UNDER THE GROUP SYSTEM.
The following are their last-known addresses :-
H. E. TREECE, 17 Boughton Road, Brownsover, age 26, married.
WILLIAM HENRY WALKER, Westhorpe, Willoughby, age 25, single.

It must be clearly understood that Lists of Men who have failed to report themselves are compiled after every endeavour has been made to trace them, both by the Military Authorities and the Police, who furnish a written report on each individual case.
Under these circumstances any mistakes made are owing to the default either of the employers or men concerned or their relatives, who have failed to notify the change of address as required by the National Registration Act.

F. F. JOHNSTONE, Lieut.-Colonel, Recruiting Officer.
2nd September, 1916.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Sergt-Major James Ward, late of the Old Manor House, Kilsby, serving in the Ammunition Column Brigade, Canadian Artillery, who recently was awarded the D.C.M, has now been promoted to a lieutenancy in the Trench Mortar Battery of a Canadian Division.

LOCAL CASUALTIES.

Pte H Perrin, elder son of Mr J Perrin, Victor’s Street, Rugby, who was invalided to England on June 28th suffering from influenza and acute rheumatism, his numerous friends will be pleased to learn that a letter has been received from Sister Chell, of Seafield Hospital, Blackpool, stating that he is now well on the way to recovery. Bandsman G A Walden, of the Worcester Pioneers, whose parents reside at 20 Campbell Street, New Bilton, is in hospital in France suffering from shrapnel wounds ; but letters from two officers of the company to which Walden belongs state that he is progressing favourably.

Second-Lieut Eric P St George Cartwright, Leinster Regiment (Machine Gun Section), youngest son of Mr Arthur Cartwright, late H.M Inspector of Schools for Northamptonshire District, was killed on August 13th. He was educated at Bilton Grange, Rugby, and at Charterhouse, where he was a member of the O.T.C.

Pte John Waring, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, was killed in action on July 27th. The soldier, who was aged 28, and single, was the son of Mr James Waring, of Bubbenhall. For many years he was engaged under the Warwickshire County Council in superintending road repair work.

B.T.H. MEN KILLED.

Pte C Cashmore, of the Oxford and Bucks L.I, reported missing since September 25th last year, is now regarded by the Military Authorities as having been killed on or about that date. He formerly worked in the foundry at the B.T.H.

NEWBOLD-ON-AVON.

WOUNDED.—Mrs H Smith, of Newbold. was notified on Saturday last that her husband, Corpl Horace Smith, of the Royal Engineers, had been wounded in the back and arm. Corpl Smith enlisted soon after the war commenced. He is in hospital in France, and is progressing favourably.

BRETFORD.

CORPL WELLS WOUNDED AGAIN.—Mr George Wells has been notified that his son, Corpl F A Wells, has been wounded again. He belongs to the Royal Warwicks (T.F), and had been in France again for some time, having recovered from his previous wounds. Another brother, Harvey Wells, has been suffering from shell shock ; whilst another is at the front. Much sympathy is felt for Mr and Mrs Wells.

A BRAVE FELLOW.—Particulars have been received in the village of the bravery of the eldest son of Mr Fred White, who for many years resided at Bretford. Bert White as a boy attended Brandon School, and left there for agricultural work. He eventually emigrated to Canada, and when war broke out he returned to fight for the Old Country, He was eventually rejected because of a crooked toe. However, this did not quench his ardour, for he had the toe taken off, and is doing good work with the Royal Engineers. His father and mother now reside at St George’s Road, Coventry. The people of Bretford and the teachers and scholars of his old school feel proud of him.

DUNCHURCH.

CASUALTIES.—Second-Lieut J D Barnwell, of the R.W.R, second son of Mr W D Barnwell, is now seriously ill with blood poisoning, and Mrs Barnwell is still in France with him.—Mr and Mrs Bull, Mill Street, have received intimation that their son in the 3rd Dragoon Guards has been wounded ; and Mrs Richardson, Tail End, has received similar news in regard to Pte R Richardson, K.R.R. Pte E Walton, of Thurlaston, same regiment, has also been wounded.

BRINKLOW.

REFUGEES.-A meeting of the subscribers to the Refugees’ Fund was held in the Church Room on Friday evening in last week. The Rev G A Dawson presided, and Mr W E Brown presented the audited accounts, showing a balance in hand of £1 14s. It was also explained that the family had left the village, and the man had been at work for some time ; and was, therefore, independent of any further support from the subscribers. The balance in hand (£1 14s) was unanimously voted to the Prisoners of War Fund. A very hearty vote of thanks was accorded to Mr Brown for the admirable manner the arrangements in connection with their guests had been carried out. In response, Mr Brown expressed his readiness to further any good cause during this time of national stress.

AN UNCENSORED LETTER FROM A PRISONER OF WAR.

A letter has this week been received by Mr. J. Reginald Barker, Hon, Secretary of the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee, from Bandsman C. Rowe, 1st Royal Welsh Fusiliers, a British prisoner of war, who has had the good fortune to be sent from Germany to Switzerland. Bandsman Rowe has been receiving help for some months from the Rugby Fund, and his letter is additional proof that the parcels of food sent every week to the local men who are war prisoners in Germany do actually reach them. It also emphasises the fact that unless these parcels are continued the men will undoubtedly starve. It therefore, hoped that the special effort the committee is making to raise funds to ensure the continuance of the weekly parcels of food and clothing will meet with a very generous response, that everyone in Rugby and the surrounding villages will give all they can possibly spare on Saturday next, September 2nd. Donations toward the Fund should be sent to Mr. Barker at 9 Regent Street, and same will be gladly acknowledged.

LEYSIN, SWITZERLAND.

August 14th, 1916.

DEAR SIR,—Just a line to ask you to discontinue any parcels to Germany, as you will see by the above address that I have had the splendid luck to get into a civilised country. I received your parcels during my stay in Germany, and beg to tender my sincere thanks to your subscribers and Committee for the good they are doing.

No one at home can believe the great appreciation our boys in Germany have towards the kind people who send the parcels. They are very anxious to know whether the parcels will always continue, as otherwise THEY WON’T COME OUT OF GERMANY ALIVE.

I have been in Germany twenty-one months, and endured the terrible hardships of the first six or eight months when no packets came through.

Only just lately, at Mannheim, the parcels were delayed on account of shifting from different camps, and consequently nineteen men out of my room were in HOSPITAL ON ACCOUNT OF EATING THE GERMAN FOOD. Most of them were wounded and out of Cologne Hospital. I will be only too pleased to answer any enquiries regarding the parcels, &c.

With my sincere thanks, I am, Sir,
Yours sincerely,
C. ROWE.

Mr. J. Reginald Barker,
Hon. Secretary,
Prisoners of War Help Committee,
9 Regent Street, Rugby.

ACHIEVEMENTS by the WARWICKS
HOW THEY CAPTURED A STRONG POSITION AND 600 PRISONERS.

During July and August, the Warwickshire Territorials were in the thick of the fighting in France, and had a very hard time of it, and, that is to be regretted, had many casualties ; but they covered themselves with glory. Their brave deeds have been eulogized in unqualified turns by the Special Press Correspondents, who have been privileged to visit the area in which the fighting has been going on. These citizen soldiers have been drawn from Birmingham and all parts of the county of Warwick, and have left all kinds of peaceful occupations to voluntarily undertake the training necessary to fit them for such an arduous campaign. The unanimous verdict of all the correspondents is to the effect that now that fighting is their trade, our Warwickshire lads are more than a match the best professional soldiers Germany can put up against them.

Early in July they formed part of the attacking force upon Anere, a little later they were in at capture of Ovillers-la-Boiselle, and afterwards led the great push towards Thiepval. They meritoriously carried out the work allotted to them, and captured one of the Germans’ strongest points, which had hitherto successfully resisted our attacks ; and they captured 500 prisoners, which one correspondent says was the big bag of the week.

In this particular operation the Warwicks were ordered to attack at a certain time, and after the usual artillery preparation, which was violently returned by the Germans, who used gas and tear shells, they went forward with an irresistible rush—in some places having to traverse 200 or 300 yards of open ground swept by machine guns before they could come to grips with Fritz. But their own machine guns and snipers, meanwhile, played great havoc among the defenders, and so terrific was the onslaught of the Warwickshire men that many machine gun crews (who, by the way, are among the bravest of German soldiers, and most stubborn) surrendered with a freedom which had never been observed before. But, nevertheless, there were several instances of typical Hun treachery after the hoisting of white flags—but with the inevitable result to the treacherous ones.

When the Warwicks had cleared the Germans from their trenches and dug-outs, and had a little time to look round, they discovered in the dug-outs and luxuriously equipped funk holes no lack of evidence in the way of half-consumed meals and luxuries, also cigars and cigarettes which had been partly smoked, that the Germans had no idea of being “ outed ” in such a hurry.

In one dug-out there was in the midst of all the horror a comic episode, like that of a clown in tragedy. A curtain divided the dug-outs, and a Warwickshire man thrust his bayonet through it. Suddenly the curtain was drawn on one side and German soldier, yawning loudly and rubbing his eyes with the knuckles of one hand, stood there, as though to say, “ What’s up?” He had slept heavily through the bombardment and attack, and now, when he saw the English soldiers facing him believed he was dreaming. So the Warwicks took 400 yards of trenches along a front of 600 yards, and thrust the wedge closer to Thiepval.

The men were splendidly led, and the officers-among whom there were, unfortunately, many casualties—had nothing but praise for the fighting qualities of the rank and file.

Both the courage and skill of these Warwickshire troops (who have received official congratulations from Headquarters and most whole-hearted thanks from the Anzac troops fighting on their right) saved them from heavy casualties. Since then the Wilts and Gloucesters have had a similar opportunity, of distinguishing themselves and they rose to the occasion with equal success.

And these men are typical of our citizen army

COUNTY TRIBUNAL PUTTING ON PRESSURE.

Realising that men are still urgently required for the Army, the County Appeals Tribunal, sitting at the Benn Buildings, Rugby, on Friday last week, intimated, through the Chairman, that they had got to put on pressure. In several cases appeals were dismissed, and in others the period of exemption was reduced.

The members of the Tribunal present were : Messrs M K Pridmore, W Johnson, jun, P G Loveitt. Messrs M E T Wratislaw and F M Burton represented the Military Authorities, and Mr J E Cox watched the proceedings in the interests of agriculture.

A MUNITIONS ORDER.

The first case was that of Wm Tisot, scrap iron and metal merchant, 7 Lawford Road, New Bilton, whose appeal had been adjourned, and respecting whom a munitions order was now made.

OPPOSITION WITHDRAWN.

The Military representatives had appealed against the granting by the local Tribunal of temporary exemption till February 1st to Francis T H Oldham, art student, The Cedars, Long Lawford ; but, in view of a recent Army order, that youths are not to be called up before attaining the age of 18 years 8 months, they withdrew their appeal.

MAKING UP FOR LOST TIME.

“ I do as much work now in a day as I used to do in a fortnight,” said Wm Frank Holloway, (36, married), stud groom, Toft House, Dunchurch. Whose exemption to October 1st to enable his employer to make other arrangements was appealed against by the Military Authorities.—Mr Wratislaw said there were two other men on Mr Rodoconachi’s farm of less than 100 acres.—Mr Holloway said, in addition to attending to the hunter stud, he helped on the farm and assisted at any job that wanted doing.—Given to September 25th, with the warning that it was very improbable that further time would be granted.

A PROBLEM FOR OLD AGE PENSIONERS.

Fredk Ernest Wm Lowe (36, married), 112 Lawford Road, New Bilton, claimed exemption on various grounds, including that of being sub-postmaster, as which he paid on Fridays 37 old age pensions.-Mr Harold Eaden pointed out the serious inconvenience it would be to these aged people to have to walk up to the General Post Office at Rugby.—The Chairman : Which concerns them most—the Germans coming or having to go a few yards extra to get their pensions ? In his statement, Mr Lowe said it would mean absolute ruin to him to join the Army, as he would have to sell everything at a sacrifice.-Given till September 25th, the Chairman remarking that men were very urgently needed, and they had got to put on pressure.

DATE AGREED UPON.

Being only passed for Labour A, John Harry Clowes, stationary engine driver for Messrs Parnell & Son, 4 Chester Street, Rugby, asked for the renewal of a certificate of exemption granted by the local Tribunal.-Mr Eadon said the firm would be content with exemption till October 1st, and this date was agreed upon.

A MATTER OF OPINION.

As William Leslie Morgan (24, single), dentist, 5a Regent Street, Rugby, did not, for the second time, attend personally to support his claim (although represented by Mr Eaden), Mr Wratislaw intimated that he considered the man was a shirker.—Mr Eaden : I should be sorry to say that. On the other hand, he is a very busy man.—Appellant had been passed for home garrison duty only, and asked for either a substantial period of exemption, or for the liberty to withdraw his appeal and renew it when he received his papers calling him up.—The Clerk to the Tribunal pointed out that as appellant was an unattested man, the Tribunal could not take the latter course.—Appeal dismissed.

COAL MERCHANT TO JOIN THE COLOURS.

Temporary exemption till October 1st had been given to William Fredk Perrin (30, single), haulier and coal merchant, 177 Oxford Street, Rugby ; but the Military lodged an appeal, which was upheld on their promising not to serve the papers for a month.

BADGED.

Another Military appeal was that in respect of Thos Wm Harrowing, boysman at a school boarding house, 26 Manor Road, Rugby, who had been given till September 1st to find work of national importance.—Mr Worthington said the man was now working at the B.T.H, and was badged.—The Chairman : As long as he is badged he is all right.

THE SHIFTING OF ORANGE BOXES.

Asserting that he supplied vegetable food for over three-quarters of Rugby, Mr J Craze asked to be allowed to retain his foreman, Harry Hyde (27, married), 16 York Street, whose exemption till November 1st did not meet with military approval.

Mr Craze said a man not used to the business and over military age was not able to lift orange boxes. Both his sons and another man had gone into the Army, and he should be hopelessly at sea (in case of illness) without his foreman.—The Chairman said we had got into such a position that we could not help ourselves, and he told applicant that he would have to see if two girls could shift his orange cases.

The foreman appealed on domestic grounds, he having a mother to support ; but the Chairman assured him his case was nothing like so hard as some others.—Exempted till October 25th, and the Chairman told Mr Craze they were rather stretching the point because he had such a good record as to his sons.

BROWNSOVER FARMER AND HIS SON.

Daniel Lloyd, farmer, Brownsover, had claimed temporary exemption on behalf of his son, Evan Harrison Lloyd (23, and single), but neither attended the Tribunal.—Appellant, in a written statement, said if his son did not obtain exemption he should have no alternative to selling the stock and giving up the farm.—The appeal was dismissed.

ANOTHER DENTISTRY CASE.

John Gardner Hall, dentist and manufacturer of artificial teeth, 20a High Street, Rugby, who had been granted time to complete his business contracts, &c, was also absent when his case was called on, and his appeal was likewise dismissed.

DEATHS.

HUGHES.—On August 16, 1916, Rifleman John Hughes, aged 18, son of the late Arthur William Hughes, late storekeeper of Rugby Sheds. Killed in action. Rifleman John Hughes is a cousin of Driver W. Chadburn, in France.—“ He gave his young life for his King, and country.”-From MOTHER, SISTER and BROTHER.

MESSENGER.—Killed in action on August 5, 1916, in France, Private John Thomas Messenger, of the Australian Imperial Force, son of Mr. T. T. Messenger, Barby.

SHAW.—In loving memory of Pte J. C. Shaw, of the R.W.R., second son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Shaw, of the Coventry Road, Dunchurch, who was killed in action in France on August 1, 1916 ; aged 26 years and 11 months.

“ No loved one stood beside him
To hear his last farewell ;
But we hope to meet in heaven,
And there for ever dwell.”
—From his loving MOTHER, FATHER, BROTHERS and SISTERS.

IN MEMORIAM.

LINES.—Killed in action, “ somewhere in France ,” Henry, the dearly beloved son of Mr. and Mrs. C. Lines, Napton ; aged 27 years.

“ We often sit and think of you,
And tenderly breathe your name ;
Nothing left of you to look at
But your photo in a frame.”
—Deeply mourned by his FATHER, MOTHER, BROTHER, SISTERS, and MAY.

OSBORN.—In loving remembrance of George Osborn, who died in the Dardanelles on August 30,1915.

“ I often sit and think of him,
And think of how he died ;
To think he could not say ‘ Good-bye ‘
Before he closed his eyes.”
BESSIE.

 

White, William Samuel. Died 3rd Jul 1916

William Samuel White’s birth was registered in Q4, 1895, and he was baptised on 6 March 1896 at St Andrew’s church, Rugby on Rugby, St Andrew

His father, Thomas White was born in about 1867 in Monks Kirby, Rugby, and in 1896 he was a labourer. His mother Mary Sophia née Clarke White was born in about 1864 in Ireland.   Their marriage was registered in Q2, 1893 in Warwick and when William was baptised, they lived at 11 Castle Street.

By 1901, the family lived at 62 James Street, Rugby, and Thomas White was a ‘Rly ?Timber Loader’. In 1911, William’s parents and younger brother and two younger sisters were living at 46 Manor Road, Rugby. William was still a schoolboy but was registered as a ‘visitor’ next door at 44 Manor Road Rugby – possibly they had a spare room – or perhaps he was indeed, just visiting.

Prior to the war, William had been at school at Laurence Sheriff and was then employed as an architect by Mr. W H Linnell.

He is reported to have ‘… enlisted at the commencement of the war’[1] as Private, No.10053 in the 10th Battalion, the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, and he was later promoted to Lance Corporal.

The 10th (Service) Battalion, The Royal Warwickshire Regiment was formed at Warwick in Sep 1914 as part of the second of Kitchener’s new armies. It was assigned to 57th Brigade in 19th Division on the Salisbury Plain. In December 1914 the battalion was in billets for the winter and in March 1915 concentrated with its division around Tidworth. On 17 May 1915 the battalion embarked for France and Flanders.

William S White’s Service Medal and Award Rolls show that he was in France from 18 July 1915, so he went to France with his Battalion. It was reported that he ‘… had been recommended for a commission, and had already undergone his training for such.’[2]

During the Battle of the Somme in 1916, the battalion was in the operational area between 1 July and 7 August and later, between 7 October and the end of the battle on 18 November 1916.

The 19th Division was actually ‘in reserve’ on 1 July 1916, when …

… La Boisselle was attacked by the 34th Division of III Corps … but the bombardment had not damaged the German deep-mined dug-outs … The III Corps divisions lost more than 11,000 casualties and failed to capture La Boisselle or Ovillers, … The advance of the 103rd Brigade was over ground with a fold, which meant that the disastrous attack by the preceding brigades could not be seen as the brigade advanced to be engaged by artillery and machine-gun fire, which inflicted 70 percent casualties, before the troops had reached the British front line. … The 19th (Western) Division [including the 10th Warwickshires] was rushed forward from the reserve, in case of a German counter-attack on Albert. The 19th Division continued the attack and captured most of the village by 4 July.[3]

It was presumably in this action and the advance from the reserve that William Samuel White was killed on 3 July 1916.

He is though listed as Samuel White by the CWGC, as one of those killed or missing, on 3 July 1916 and whose body was not found or identified. He is remembered on Pier and Face 9 A, 9 B and 10 B 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, and on the Lawrence Sheriff memorial plaque

William Samuel White was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

 

– – – – – –

 

This article on William Samuel White was researched and written for a Rugby Family History Group [RFHG] project, by John P H Frearson and is © John P H Frearson and the Rugby Family History Group, June 2016.

[1]       Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 29 July 1916.

[2]       Rugby Advertiser, Saturday, 29 July 1916.

[3]         https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capture_of_La_Boisselle