War Memorial in the Guildhall CourtyardVisitors to Bradninch can't fail to notice the war memorial in the courtyard at the front of the Guildhall.

This lists 50 Bradninch men who died as a result of the First World War, 12 men from the Second World War and one man who died in the action in Korea.

There is also a brass plaque in St Disens Church listing those who died in the First World War but two men were added to it after it had been made: W W Snell and F J Vicary.  These men died in 1920, presumably after the two memorials had been made.

In the Mill at Hele there is a stone plaque with the 13 men who died and worked at the Mill.

Dr Mike Leonard has collected biographical details of most of these 52 men on the memorials who died in WW-I and they are listed below.  He has also done likewise for a further 15 men who are not listed but who had a Bradninch connection (mostly, they were born in Bradninch).

Those listed on the memorials who died in WW-I

Beer, Edward George
Rank: Private
Regiment: Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry
Unit Text: 1st / 5th Btn.
Service No: 29947 (Formerly 8/1298 of the Territorial Reserve Battalion).
Date of Birth: 01/12/1898 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 20/04/1918 @ 19.
Cemetery: Cabaret-Rouge British Cemetery, Souchez. Ref: VIII.H.12

Son of George Beer who in 1901 was a Stable Job Master and Carrier living in Fore Street of Bradninch with his wife Elizabeth the daughter of Thomas Elliott from Dunsford. Edward was educated at the local boys school and became a Clerk.

Enlisted 22 February 1917 and served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from 10 January 1918. Was wounded and taken prisoner 12-17 April but died at the Field Hospital, Seclin 20 April 1918 and buried there.

Edward married a Dorothy M Harriman in Jan-Mar 1918 in the Tiverton District.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Bowden, Harold / Harry
Rank: Able Seaman
Regiment: Royal Naval Volunteer reserves
Unit Text: Anison Battalion
Service No: R/2556
Date of Birth: 25/12/1882 in Tiverton district
Date of Death: 26/10/1917
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium. Ref: Panel 2 to 3 and 162 to 162A.

1901 Harry a hawker on glaze rolls in paper mill - of Mary Ann Bowden (widow) (58) Peter Street – a rag sorter at Paper Mill – neighbour of the Vicary’s. In 1891 Mary was also a widow in the Workhouse neighbouring Dunmore & working in Paper Mill.

Harry married Jan-Mar 1905 – Tiverton district – to an Alice Westcott. In 1911 living in Peter Street with wife Alice and daughter Olive – born 1908 – parents working in Paper making.

Killed at Paschendale, France.

 
Bryant, Ernest Frederick
Rank: Officer's Steward 3rd Class
Regiment: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. "Vivid." (a shore establishment)
Service No: L/6921(Dev.)
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1898 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 28/06/1918 @ 20 in Bradninch.
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground. Ref: 152

Ernest was son of Annie Bryant, a widow who was a rag sorter at Paper Mill, and they lived Cullompton Hill.

By 1901 Annie had re-married John Radford (thus his step-father), of Parsonage St., Bradninch. 1911 Ernest at School living with his mother Annie and stepfather John Radford – farm labourer. Mother & sister Ethel working in the paper mills.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque which shows Ernest served on H.M.S. Edinburgh.

Possible victim of the ‘Spanish ‘flu’ epidemic that swept through the area.

 
Burrows, Frederick John
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 8th Bn.
Service No: 30626
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1897 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 09/05/1917 @ 20
Cemetery: Arras Memorial in France. Ref: Bay 4

Of Frederick (a Labourer in Paper mill) & Elizabeth Mary (Clark they married 1896), Fore Street.

By 1911 father Fred was a bleacher in local paper mill whilst Frederick John was a domestic garden help – his parents are buried in Bradninch & there is a record of his death on their stone (added 1st Sept’ 1962).

Frederick was killed in Action during the Second battle of Bullecourt. After the first attempt to break the Hindenburg line, a second assault took place from 3 to 21 May 1917. At 3.45 am on 3 May 1917 the attack was launched. However, thanks to their deep underground shelters many Germans escaped the bombardments. Part of the attacking force was exposed to machine guns and many soldiers were killed in No man's land. After an hour of fighting, the Australians seized a section of the first two German lines.

The British 62nd Division attacked the ruined of Bullecourt on the morning of 3 May. Despite the support of ten tanks, the attack failed in the face of the Württemberg division. George Howell was seriously wounded during the fighting. At the end of the battle, the Allies retained a small part of the Hindenburg Line but it was of no tactical significance. The British Army then focused its attention on the battles in Flanders.

 
Chamberlain, Edwin
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st Bn.
Service No: 7645
Date of Birth: March quarter 1887 in Silverton
Date of Death: 25/10/1914 @ 26
Cemetery: Le Touret Memorial. Ref: Panel 8 and 9.

Edwin was son of the late Edward and Fanny – a Widow & Charwoman. Edwin was a machine boy in the Mill & they lived on Cullompton Hill. In 1891 Fanny was on Parish Relief & again in 1901 times were evidently very difficult.

Edwin married Alice Jones Oct-Dec 1910 in Pontypridd & at time of his death lived at 78, William St., Ystrad (Rhondda), Glam.

Roll of honour shows Edwin was killed in action 22/10/1914 at Ypres France.

 
Coleman, Frederick William
Rank: Private
Regiment: Queen’s Own (Royal West Kent regiment)
Unit Text: 10th Btn.
Service No: G/23692
Date of Birth: 30/12/1889 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 07/06/1917 @ 26
Cemetery: Dickebusch New Military Cemetery extension, Belgium. Ref: III.B.29

Son of Frederick William Coleman of Secherlerleigh Cottage, Tiverton and his wife Jane the daughter of John Seaman. Fred (snr) was an Agricultural labourer born in Honiton and worked around Cullompton area.

Frederick was born in Cullompton and educated there. Enlisted 11 May 1916 and served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from January 1917. Died 6 months later 7 June following wounds received in action at Messines Ridge.

 
Collins, Frederick James
Rank: Ordinary Seaman
Regiment: Royal Navy Unit
Unit Text: H.M.S. "Vivid." Service No: J/85500(Dev)
Date of Birth: 1889 in Hillingdon, Middlesex
Date of Death: 03/04/1918 @ 18 in RN Barracks, Devonport
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground (Buried 06/04/1918). Ref: 184

Son of John from Portsmouth & Lottie (Charlotte) Collins, of Manor Cottage, Bradninch. Born at Hillingdon, Middlesex where 1901 John was a Domestic Gardener – they must have moved down after 1901.

Records show - 03/04/1918 at HMS Vivid, RN Barracks, Devonport - Collins, Frederick J, Ordinary Seaman, J 85500, died of illness at the Plymouth Naval Hospital.

Possible victim of the ‘Spanish ‘flu’ epidemic that swept through the area.

 
Copp, Sidney Archibald
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment Unit
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.
Service No: 20042
Date of Birth: Apr-June 1894 in Silverton
Date of Death: 01/07/1916 @ 22
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial. Ref: Pier and Face 1 C.

See entry below for Thomas Copp.

 
Copp, Thomas
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 9th Bn.
Service No: 20402
Date of Birth: Jul-Sept 1885 in Silverton
Date of Death: 01/07/1916 @ 32
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial. Ref: Pier and Face 1 C.

Sidney and Tom were sons of William & Polly Copp at Mount Pleasant, 7 Cullompton Hill – William was an “Ordinary Agricultural labourer” from Cullompton whilst Polly was a Charwoman.

In 1891 they lived in Silverton.

Sidney married Mary Vickery Jan-Mar 1915 in Barnstaple area whilst Tom married Beatrice M Baker Oct-Dec 1915 in Torrington district.

Also 1 July 1916: with two different units Sidney & Thomas Copp died on the Somme on the same day whilst serving with two different units: Sidney with 2nd Battalion and Thomas with 7th (Service) Battalion, the Devonshire Regiment. The brothers have no known grave, and are commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing.

Both Tom and Sidney were killed in action - See “July 1916 - The Shrine and Mansel Copse” – however the inscription on their parents gravestone puts their deaths as one month apart – Sydney died 1st July whilst Tom died 1st August both “in action”,

All war commission records show they both died on that fateful day 1st July attacking Mansel Copse and many tribute sites include their tragic deaths just hours and a few miles apart - although still tragic, records seem to say they did not die together.

Curiously their service numbers are very similar with just 2 numbers transposed.

Their parents appear to have had the two boys late in their marriage as William died 16th Sept 1919 at 72 and Pollie died about 10 years later 7th July 1929 at 74. Their two sons are recorded on their memorial.

 
Daniels, Albert Emmanuel
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: "A" Coy. 2nd Bn.
Service No: 33169
Date of Birth: 1892 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 20/06/1917 @ 25
Cemetery: Belgian Battery Corner Cemetery. Ref: I. A. 6.

Albert was the son of Francis & Fanny Daniels (see below).

Albert was husband of Rose Ellen Daniels, of 2, Culme View, Exeter Rd., Cullompton, Devon having married Rose E Willey Apr-June 1915 in Tiverton District.

Albert died at Ypres, France.

 
Daniels, Francis James Reginald
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Worcestershire Regiment
Unit Text: "A" Coy. 2nd / 8th Bn.
Service No: 241926
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1886 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 10/06/1918 @ 32

Cemetery: St. Souplet British Cemetery. Ref: II. D. 4.

Another very sad and tragic scenario.

Albert and Frank were sons of Francis & Fanny of 53 Hen Street. Their father Francis Daniels was a Wheelwright (1901) born Farway, Devon

Frank was a Hand at Paper Mill and a Member of Bradninch A.F.C. 1912-13. Died from wounds received at St Leventau.

 
Don, James Alexander
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Royal Horse and Field Artillery
Unit Text: “D” Battery, 52nd Brigade.
Service No: L/19161
Date of Birth: 1882 Essex Custom House, West Ham
Date of Death: 16/05/1917
Cemetery: Point-Du-Jour Military Cemetery Athies, France. Ref: III. C. 10

Son of Mary Don (w) who came from Scotland to work in the paper factory at Bradninch. In 1901 Nary was living in Fore Street as a rag sorter at the mill with daughters Mary (24) and Alice (19) both born in Aberdeen and a son George (15). James was still in West Ham as an Iron Mouldings Apprentice.

Awarded the Military Medal.

 
Drew, Charles Eli
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st / 4th Bn. (territorials) Service No: 1007
Date of Birth: Apr-June 1889 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 08/03/1916
Cemetery: Basra Memorial in Iraq. Ref: Panel 11

Charles of Eli & Mary Ann Drew, Licensed Victualler of Angel Inn in Cullompton. By 1911 Eli was a boot maker living on Cullompton Hill with family – Charles was a boarder in Pound Square, Cullompton working on the glaze rollers of local Paper mill.

Records say born Cullompton & enlisted there. Killed in Action in Mesopotamia.

 
Elliott, Stanley
Rank: Private (driver)
Regiment: Royal Marines
Unit Text: R.M. Div. Train, R.N. Div. Service No: Deal/2540(S)
Date of Birth: 17 Nov 1894 in Glympie St Woodstoke, Cape Town, South Africa
Date of Death: 26/03/1919 in Plymouth Borough Asylum near Totnes
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground buried 29/03/1919. Ref: 203 – same grave as Victor.

Son of Henry & Susan Elliot. Henry was a Carpenter born in Week St Mary Cornwall whilst Susan (nee Palmer) came from Wyndams St, Plymouth. They married Dec (quarter) 1887 in Launceston district then seemed to have sailed to South Africa shortly after that and returned to Chacewater, Cornwall by 1901 thence up to Plymouth 1911 eventually moving to Bradninch. They are both buried in the local churchyard.

Stanley was an errand boy for Liptons in 1911.

Service history: ex-Canteen Assistant HMS "Invincible" Enlisted RM 20/11/15

to Royal Navy Hospital Portland 27/11/15

Not listed in "With Full & Grateful Hearts", 1914-15 Star as Canteen Assistant HMS "Invincible"

Discharged - Invalided at Royal Navy Hospital Portland 29/12/15 for "Neurasthenia."

( Neurasthenia is a psycho-pathological term first used by George Miller Beard in 1869[1] to denote a condition with symptoms of fatigue, anxiety, headache, neuralgia and depressed mood. The term had been used at least as early as 1829 to label a mechanical weakness of the actual nerves, rather than the more metaphorical "nerves" referred to by Beard in 1869)

Cause of death: Died after Discharge (Invalided) in the Plymouth Borough Asylum, Ugborough, from Pulmonary Tuberculosis.

Notes:

ADM/171/168 = V.B. issued to Father IC/40/560 (BWM & Victory should also have been issued/named by/to the MMR as Elliott did no active service with the RMs & would otherwise have qualified for the BWM only with the RMs)

 
Elliott, Victor
Rank: Sapper
Regiment: Royal Engineers
Unit Text: Railway Operating Div. Service No: WR/328164
Date of Birth: 1899 in Salt River, Cape town, South Africa.
Date of Death: 29/03/1919 – which was the same day his brother Stanley was buried.
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground buried 14/04/1919. Ref: 203 – same grave as Stanley.

Son of Henry & Susan Elliot. Henry was a Carpenter born in Week St Mary Cornwall whilst Susan (nee Palmer) came from Wyndams St, Plymouth. They married Dec (quarter) 1887 in Launceston district then seemed to have sailed to South Africa shortly after that and returned to Chacewater, Cornwall by 1901 thence up to Plymouth 1911 eventually moving to Bradninch.

They are both buried in the local churchyard dying within days of one another.

 
Flay, Ernest
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.
Service No: 18569
Date of Birth: Oct-Dec 1890 in Silverton
Date of Death: 25/11/1917 @ 27
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium. Ref: Panel 38 to 40.

Stepson of John Webb and Mary Ann (formerly Flay) and husband of Lucy Cora Lily Flay, of Church Lane, Bradninch, Devon they married Oct-Dec 1913 in Tiverton district.

Member of Bradninch A.F.C. 1912-13.

Lucy C L Snell was sister of Richard & William Snell – who both perished in WW1 – as did Brother-in-law.

Ernest was killed in action in Paschendale, France.

 
Force, John
Rank: Gunner
Regiment: Royal Garrison Artillery
Unit Text: 25th Heavy Bty. Service No: 191948
Date of Birth: 1879
Date of Death: 06/11/1918 @ 39
Cemetery: Busigny Communal Cemetery Extension. Ref: VIII. A. 32.

Son of Robert & Sarah Force, of Bradninch, Devon - born in Bradninch but enlisted Cardiff where he had married Lillian Mary Saunders Oct-Dec 1900 in Cardiff.

They lived together at 20, Clive Road, Canton, Cardiff.

John died of wounds in at the 12th Casualty Clearance station in France.

 
Frankpitt, Ernest Richard
Rank: Private
Regiment: East Yorkshire Regiment
Unit Text: 7th Bn. Service No: 29303
Date of Birth: Oct-Dec 1884 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 02/01/1918 @ 33
Cemetery: Ribecourt Road Cemetery, Trescault. Ref: I. D. 13.

Son of Robert & Harriet Frankpitt, of Hen Street, Bradninch, Devon; Robert was an Agricultural labourer in Bradninch.

Husband of Emma Frankpitt, of Southbrook, Countess Weir Exeter.

Had married an Emma Lear / Tear Oct-Dec 1915 in Langport, Somerset. Emma was born in Countess Wear, Exeter.

 
Gitsom, Horace Augustus
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment Royal Army Medical Corps
Unit Text: attd. 20th Coy. Service No: 42054
Date of Birth: 1895 in Bristol St Philips
Date of Death: 01/02/1917 @ 22 Died of cerebro-spinal meningitis at Tidworth Hospital.
Cemetery: Tidworth Military Cemetery, Near Salisbury Plain. Ref: C. 200.

Horace was Stepson to John Pollard of 6 Cullompton Hill, a Stokers assistant in local Paper Mill.

John had married Ellen Louisa, Horace’s mother.

 
Glass, Thomas
Rank: Private
Regiment: Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment)
Unit Text: 4th Bn. Service No: 862127
Date of Birth: 28/08/1879 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 13/09/1917 @ 38
Cemetery: Longuenesse (St. Omer) Souvenir Cemetery. Ref: IV. D. 78.

A Thomas Glass– Dryer in Paper Mill. In February 1916 gave his employment as Warehouseman.

Son of Elizabeth Ann Glass (Widow) a rag sorter in Paper Mill in Broad Mead Cottages, West End Road. 1881 Elizabeth Ann Glass 37 – a widow & seamstress

Son of Thomas when did he die? <1881 of Bradninch, Devon, England; husband of Isabella Elizabeth Glass, of 75, Vine Avenue, West Toronto.

Enlisted Toronto.

Attestation records –

Married (I.E. Hawkings Oct-Dec 1901 – Tiverton district) to Isabella Elizabeth “Glass” of 51 Mc Murray Avenue, Toronto (04/02/1916) – named as next of kin.

Toronto Evening Telegram – 20/Sept/1917

A few days ago it was reported that Pte. Thomas Glass was ill and his wife has just been informed that the malady has terminated fatally. The blow is all the greater to the family as his letters have invariably been most cheerful and he wrote of playing cricket at the front, being evidently in excellent form. He was an Englishman by birth and came to Canada about four years ago from Devonshire. His widow and two children live at 1684 Dunbas St.

Toronto Star – 5/October/1917

The faint hope which his widow and others have entertained that a mistake had been made when the report came through that Pte. Thomas Glass of West Toronto had died in France was dispelled yesterday when Mrs. Glass received a letter from sergeant working in the same moveable hospital in which her husband had been employed. The writer said “his dear old friend, Tom,” had been ill off and on for some time: that he had suffered with “trench fever” and that complaining of pains in the head, he was sent to a base hospital, where he died three days later. The same mail brought a most cheerful letter, written by Pte. Glass four days before his death. In it he spoke of being in splendid health, recounted the successful doings of the cricket club, of which he was the captain; and referred to having renewed the acquaintance of Fred Lefite and other old comrades of the Sportsmen’s Battalion.

Thomas Glass died (of illness), September 13. He was Captain of the West Toronto C.C. Highest score: 116 not out for West Toronto v. Yorkshire Society, 1915.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Godfrey, Philip Thomas
Rank: Private
Regiment: Canadian Infantry (Eastern Ontario Regiment)
Unit Text: 38th Bn. Service No: 775295
Date of Birth: 16 December 1891 – records claim in Torquay or newton Abbot.
Date of Death: 11/01/1917 @ 27
Cemetery: Ecoivres Military Cemetery, Mont-St. Eloi. Ref: IV. B. 5.

Philip Godfrey of Thomas & Beatrice Dora Godfrey of Hen Street.

Thomas a Yard foreman at Paper Mill. Philip was born in Torquay, Devon – 1891 Thomas lived with his family in Lymington St, Torquay as a Labourer from Bradninch.

Attestation records –

Next of kin – his mother Beatrice Dora Godfrey of Bradninch.

Previous Military duty with 7th Devons as a Cyclist. A Tanner by trade. Enlisted 19th November 1915 in Toronto to 126th Overseas Bn. A Methodist and unmarried

Toronto Star – 5/February/1917

Pte. P. T. Godfrey, who went overseas in the fall with the 126th Battalion, is reported killed in action at the Somme. His next of kin live in England.

 
Griffin, John
Rank: Private
Regiment: King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Unit Text: 12th Bn. Service No: 49491
Date of Birth: July – Sept 1894 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 13/04/1918 @ 23 in Vieux Berquin, France
Cemetery: Outtersteene Communal Cemetery Extension, Bailleul. Ref: II. E. 45.

Son of John and Agnes Griffin, of 56, Salisbury Rd., Gravesend, Kent.

Native of Bradninch, Devon.

In 1911 the family lived in New Street, Bradninch and all, including John, worked in the Paper mills.

 
Haydon, John Henry
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.
Service No: 7606
Date of Birth: Apr-June 1885 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 14/04/1917 @ 32
Cemetery: Villers Hill British Cemetery, Villers-Guislain. Ref: VI. C. 30.

John a Paper mill Hand and son of John & Margaret Jane Haydon 10 West End. Bradninch, Cullompton; husband of Kate Haydon, of Kentisbeare, Cullompton, Devon.

Born in Cullompton. Enlisted in Exeter. Married a Kate Carpenter (from Kentiosbeare) Feb-March 1911 in Tiverton district Killed in Action in France & Flanders.

 
Haydon, Robert
Rank: Able Seaman
Regiment: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. "Defence." Service No: J/21117
Date of Birth: 25th May 1895 in Bradninch.
Date of Death: (08:15pm) 31/05/1916 @ 21
Cemetery: Plymouth Naval Memorial. Ref: 12.

Robert another son of John and Margaret Jane Haydon, of "The Meeches," 10 West End, Bradninch, Cullompton, Devon. John was a Mill labourer.

H.M.S. Defence, Battle of Jutland, 31st May -1st June 1916. She was the flagship of Rear Admiral Sir Robert Arbuthnot, leading the First Cruiser Squadron at the Battle of Jutland on 31 May 1916.

The other ships of the squadron (HMS Warrior, HMS Duke of Edinburgh, and HMS Black Prince) were of a similar outmoded class.

While closing for the kill at high speed with the SMS Wiesbaden, drifting and crippled between the German and British fleets, Defence presented a target for the combined firepower of the German battlecruisers, whose proximity was hidden by smoke and mist.

After initial damage she was struck by a salvo which blew up her after magazine, triggering explosions on the ammunition rails leading to the broadside 7.5 inch guns. Within seconds, another salvo immediately hit forward, and she blew up in a spectacular explosion and rapidly sinking with the loss of Arbuthnot and her entire complement of 903 men.

Robert’s body was never recovered.

 
Haydon, Walter Tom
Rank: Private
Regiment: Coldstream Guards
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.
Service No: 7178
Date of Birth: July-Sept 1890 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 27/08/1918 @ 28
Cemetery: Douchy-Les-Ayette British Cemetery. Ref: IV. J. 13.

In 1891 a Walter of Thomas & Mary Jane Haydon living in Back Street. Thomas was a Farm Labourer in Bradninch.

Walter married an Ellen Knowles Jan-Mar 1912 – Tiverton district and they appear to have lived in Heavitree.

Walter died of wounds received whilst fighting in France & Flanders

 
Heal, Tom
Rank: Lance Corporal
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st Bn. Service No: 11530
Date of Birth: Oct-Dec 1896 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 27/07/1916 @ 19
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial. Ref: Pier and Face 1 C.

Son of James & Elizabeth Heal, of West End, Bradninch, Devon. In 1901 James was a Plate layer on the railway whilst Elizabeth worked in the Papermill.

The Battle of Delville Wood 14 July – 3 September, was an engagement in the 1916 Battle of the Somme in the First World War. Delville Wood is to the north east of the town of Longueval in the département of the Somme in northern France. After the two weeks of carnage from the commencement of the Somme Offensive, it became evident that a breakthrough of either the Allied or German line was most unlikely and the offensive had evolved to the capture of small prominent towns, woods or features which offered either side tactical advantages from which to direct artillery fire or to launch further attacks.Delville Wood was one such feature, making it important to German and Allied forces. As part of a large offensive starting on 14 July, General Douglas Haig, Commander of the British Expeditionary Force intended to secure the British right flank, while the centre advanced to capture the higher lying areas of High Wood in the centre of his line. Delville Wood was a battle to secure this right flank. The battle achieved this objective and is considered a tactical Allied victory. However, it was one of the bloodiest confrontations of the Somme, with both sides incurring large casualties. This tactical victory needs to be measured against the losses sustained as well as the fact that the British advance to the north had made only marginal gains by the end of the battle.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Hepburn, Roger Paul
Rank: Second Lieutenant
Regiment: Royal Engineers
Unit Text: 30th Signal Coy. attd. 21st Inf. Bde. Service No:
Date of Birth: July-Sept 1893 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 03/08/1917 @ 24
Cemetery: Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery. Ref: XV. A. 5.

Roger Paul Hepburn - brother of John Patrick H’ – a Paper manufacturer – head of family at Dunmore House in 1901.

Roger was the youngest son of the Late Sir Thomas Henry Hepburn and his wife Lady Josephine Hepburn of Dunmore House, Bradninch.

Awarded Military Cross.

Roger Paul Hepburn MC of Magdalene College, Cambridge. Sec. Lieut. Royal Engineers. Signal Officer of 21st Infantry Brigade.

He died of wounds near Ypres, Belgium on August 3rd 1917 aged 24 years after serving his king and Country for three years in the great war.

 
Hollett, William James
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st Bn. Service No: 7806
Date of Birth: Apr-June 1886 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 23/09/1914 @ 28
Cemetery: Villeneuve-St. Georges Old Communal Cemetery. Ref: I. 735.

William son of James & Emma Hollett – Bricklayer / Mason in Fore Street 1891 & in 1901 Cholwell, Millway – neighbour of Mortimer’s.

Born at Bradninch, Devon and enlisted in Exeter. Husband of the late Lily Hollett – had married Lily Mussell Oct-Dec 1911 in Salisbury area.

Served with the Expeditionary Force in France where he died of wounds received at Villeneuve, France.

 
Jeffery, Leonard
Rank: Officer's Cook 3rd Class
Regiment: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. "Edgar." Service No: L/6656
Date of Birth: Oct-Dec 1892 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 01/11/1915 @ 23
Cemetery: Plymouth Naval Memorial. Ref: 7

Leonard Jeffrey - son of Mark (Paper maker) & Sarah Jane Jeffery of 147 Parsonage Street, or Fore St., Bradninch, Devon.

Records show that on Monday, 1 November 1915 On HMS Edgar - JEFFERY, Leonard, Officer's Cook 3c, L 6656, died of – illness and was buried at sea.

H.M.S. Edgar was involved in the Gallipoli campaign, off Turkey, at the time.

 
Jordan, Walter
Rank: Gunner
Regiment: Royal Horse Artillery & Royal Field Artillery
Unit Text: "D" Bty. 17th Bde. Service No: 226368
Date of Birth: Jul-Sept 1887 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 26/08/1917 @ 30
Cemetery: Artillery Wood Cemetery. Ref: I. C. 14.

Walter of Edwin & Mary Ann Jordan – hawker in a Paper Mill of Hele Square, Hele

Bradninch, Devon & enlisted Tiverton.

Killed in Action in north of Ypres in France.

 
Lane, Ernest John
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 8th Bn. Service No: 7582
Date of Birth: Jun-Sept 1887 in Bradninch
Date of Death (Declared mssing): 26/10/1917 @ 30
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium. Ref: Panel 38 to 40.

Son of Richard & Rhoda Lane of Laburnum Cottage, Broadclyst. Born 1887 September Quarter in Bradninch.

1901 Richard a Carter from Caseberry Farm off Silverton Road whilst Rhoda worked in Paper mill.

His brother Richard had died during the boer war.

In 1911 Ernest was in barracks in Andover as a Private 413/x/0 1st Bn Devonshire Regt.

Possibly a casualty of Passchendaele see “July 1917 – Passchendaele” Also commemorated on Broadclyst’s Memorial.

 
Lucas, Fred
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 9th Bn.
Service No: 16194
Date of Birth: July-Sept 1893 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 06/09/1916 @ 23
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial. Ref: Pier and Face 1 C.

Of Frederick William & Bessie Lucas – - William a Domestic Coachman from Dunsford of West End Road.

Enlisted Cullompton and Killed in action – theatre of war France and Flanders

 
Maddock, Samuel
Rank: Private
Regiment: Royal Canadian Infantry. Central Ontario Regiment
Unit Text: 75th Bn. Service No: 1024115
Date of Birth: 11th July 1875 in Silverton
Date of Death: 30/08/1917 @ 42
Cemetery: Canadian Cemetery #2 @ Neuville-St-Vaast. Ref: 2.D.20

1881 son of Samuel Maddock (Ag lab in Bradninch – in 1891 working in Silverton with Mary working in local Paper mill) & Mary Ann.

Young Samuel a meat packer.

Married Florence Mary Squire Jan-Mar 1902 in Tiverton district. Florence died 24 January 1952 @ 79 and is buried at Bradninch.

Attestation 5th June 1916 when they lived at 49 Steutzma(?) Ave., Toronto. Killed in action in France

 
Mortimore, Frank
Rank: Private
Regiment: London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers)
Unit Text: 3rd Bn. Service No: 253280
Date of Birth: 1889 in Silverton
Date of Death: 20/04/1917 @ 27
Cemetery: Warlincourt Halte British Cemetery, Saulty. Ref: X. B. 4.

Frank son of Frank & Sarah Mortimore – Bricklayer – of Colchards, Millway – neighbour of Hollets. In 1891 his father was working & living in Silverton as Mason.

Husband of Annie Mortimore, of Culm View, West End, Bradninch, Devon. Married Annie Chubb July-Sept 1915 in Tiverton district.

Enlisted in Tiverton but living in Bradninch. Died of wounds received – his death commemorated on the memorial of his parents Frank and Sarah – the gravestone has sadly collapsed during time.

Frank was Formerly 4173, 5th R.W. Kent Regiment.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Needs, Walter John
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st / 4th Bn. Service No: 1943
Date of Birth: Oct –Dec 1889 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 03/06/1915
Cemetery: Basra Memorial in Iraq. Ref: Panel 11.

Walter John Needs son of John & Sarah Needs of Moorland Cottages, Silverton.

By 1911 the family lived in Millway Cottages; John was a cowman on local farm whilst sister Alice was a dressmaker and the remainder of family were working in the paper mills or attending school.

Walter was fighting in the Persian Gulf when he was killed.

 
Ninnis, Frederick
Rank: Private
Regiment: Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. Formerly 5318 Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 7th Bn. Service No: 260106
Date of Birth: 1881 in Gwennap, Cornwall
Date of Death: 27/09/1917 @ 36
Cemetery: Cement House Cemetery, Belgium. Ref: I. D. 7.

Born Gwennap, Cornwall & living Dunsford, Nr Exeter. Enlisted in Exeter. Husband of Emma Jane Ninnis, Barncoose Terrace, Redruth, Cornwall.

Headmaster of Bradninch Boys' School, Devon.

Married Emma Jane Craze July-Sept 1907 in Redruth district.

Killed in Action in France & Flanders theatre.

 
Norman, Victor Francis
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 8th Bn.
Service No: 33170
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1893 in Bradninch
Date of Death (declared missing): 26/10/1917 @ 24
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium. Ref: Panel 38 to 40.

Victor son of Francis & Eliza of 137 Fore Street, Bradninch.

Married a Hollett Jan-Mar 1916 in Tiverton district.

Member of Bradninch A.F.C. 1912-13. Possibly a casualty of Passchendaele see “July 1917 – Passchendaele”

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Payne (or Pyne), Walter Herbert
Rank: Sergeant
Regiment: Royal Field Artillery Supply and Transport Col.,
Unit Text: 6th Div. Supply Coy. Service No: 43222
Date of Birth: Jan March 1886 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 22/07/1919 @ 32
Cemetery: Basra War Cemetery in Iraq. Ref: II. D. 11.

Won M.S.M.

Son of Charles & Elizabeth Payne, of Bradninch, Devon. Charles was a Farm labourer from Cullompton living on Hele Road. In 1911 the family are running a building firm on Peter Street with sons Frank (Builder) and Arthur (Carter) whilst Walter is recorded as a Soldier – born in “Devonshire Call Pton” (Cullompton?) as Acting Bombardier 118th Battery R F A in Marlborough Lines Aldershot, Farnborough.

Awarded the Meritorious Service medal.

 
Richardson, David Colin
Rank: Electrical Artificer 2nd Class
Regiment: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. Goliath Service No: 345145
Date of Birth: 14/10/1880 in Islington, London
Date of Death: 13/05/1915
Cemetery: Chatham Naval Memorial. REF: 12

Worked at the Paper mill in Hele as an Electrician. Widow. Winifred I., Clematis Bungalow, Hele, Nr.Cullompton, Devon

Killed in action with Turkish destroyer in Dardanelles - David’s body was never recovered.

H.M.S. Goliath took part in operations against German East Africa, participating in the blockade of the German light cruiser SMS Königsberg in the Rufiji River. From March 1915, she was part of the Dardanelles Campaign, and remained in support of the landings at Gallipoli in April.

The Dardanelles campaign

On 25 March 1915, Goliath was ordered to the Dardanelles to participate in the campaign there. She transferred her flag to second-class cruiser Hyacinth and departed for the Dardanelles on 1 April.

Commanded by Captain Thomas Lawrie Shelford, Goliath was part of the Allied fleet supporting the landing at X and Y Beaches during the landing on 25 April, sustaining some damage from the gunfire of Ottoman Turkish forts and shore batteries, and supported Allied troops ashore during the First Battle of Krithia that day. She covered the evacuation on 26 April. She was damaged by Turkish guns again on 2 May.

On the night of 12–13 May, Goliath was anchored in Morto Bay off Cape Helles, along with Cornwallis and a screen of five destroyers, in foggy conditions. Around 01:00 on 13 May, the Turkish torpedo boat destroyer Muâvenet-i Millîye, which was manned by a combined German and Turkish crew, eluded the destroyers Beagle and Bulldog and closed on the battleships. 

Muâvenet-i Millîye fired two torpedoes which struck Goliath almost simultaneously abreast her fore turret and abeam the fore funnel, causing a massive explosion. Goliath began to capsize almost immediately, and was lying on her beam ends when a third torpedo struck near her after turret. She then rolled over completely and began to sink by the bows, taking 570 of the 700-strong crew to the bottom, including her commanding officer, Captain Thomas Lawrie Shelford.

Although sighted and fired on after the first torpedo hit, Muâvenet-i Millîye escaped unscathed. For sinking Goliath, Turkish Captain Ahmet Saffet Bey was promoted to rank of Major and the German captain of Muâvenet-i Millîye, Kapitän leutnant Rudolph Firle was awarded the Iron Cross 1st Class as well as Austro-Hungarian and Turkish decorations.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Robertson, Robert Horsburgh
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: London Regiment (London Scottish)
Unit Text: 14th Btn. Service No: 2309
Date of Birth: 11/10/1884 in Rutherglen
Date of Death: 06/05/1915 @ 31
Cemetery: Rue-Des-Berceaux Military Cemetery, Richebourg-L’Avoue, France. Ref: II.F.7.

Son of Robert Holmes Robertson of Stonelaw House, Rutherglen by his wife Jessie the daughter of John Horsburgh, daughter of Robert Horsburgh and nephew of John Horsburgh of the Hele Paper Co., Ltd., of Hele, Cullompton.

In 1891 are records of Robert Rosburgh & family - as Clerk of the Mill born in Scotland – their daughter Sarah was born Bradninch and in 1891 a dressmaker.

Born Rutherglen 11 October 1884 and educated at Stonelaw School and Glasgow Academy. Was in business with his uncle at Hele Mill but on the outbreak of war immediately joined the London Scottish and was drafted to France.

He quickly rose to be a corporal and was on the eve of being gazetted to a commission when he was shot by a bullet at dawn of 6 May 1915.

His Captain wrote: “He was a splendid fellow and had done so well that he was offered and had accepted a commission in the regiment. He was greatly loved by his comrades”.

He was buried at Richebourg in an orchard by the remainder of the “five inseparables” of whom he had been one, and a cross marks the spot.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Saunders, Thomas William
Rank: Private
Regiment: Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry
Unit Text: 7th Bn. Service No: 29195
Date of Birth: 1896 in bradninch
Date of Death: 22/02/1917 @ 21
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial. Ref: Pier and Face 6 B.

Son of John Saunders, of Peter Street, Bradninch, Cullompton, Devon and raised by his Uncle & aunt (brother and sister) Frederick and Caroline Lock.

 
Snell, Richard Charles A.H.
Rank: Gunner
Regiment: Tanks Corp.
Unit Text: "C" Bn. Service No: 95195
Date of Birth: Apr-June 1891 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 20/11/1917 @ 26
Cemetery: Tincourt New British Cemetery. Ref: II. E. 19.

Son of Charlotte Snell, of Church Lane, Bradninch, Devon, and the late George Snell. George Snell was a Journeyman Mason born Chawleigh, Devon and had passed away before the war – another of the Snell family.

Richard Snell’s 2 sisters married guys who both perished in WW1 as did his brother.

Richard died in Tincourt Hospital.

 
Snell, Walter William
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: Labour Corps - transf. to (99391) 166th Coy
Service No: 24701 / 99391
Date of Birth: 1881 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 21/03/1920 @ 39
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground Ref: 246

William Snell of George & Charlotte Snell of Hen Street – another of the Snell family.

Husband of Clara Snell, of 190, Emlyn Road, Shepherd's Bush, London. Married a Clara Cockle Jan-Mar 1905 in Romford area.

Clara died 1st June 1963 at 84 and is buried in Bradninch Church.

Walter Snell’s 2 sisters married guys who both perished in WW1 as did his brother.

Walter was buried 29/03/1920 and it was paid for by the War Graves Commission.

 
Southwood, Samuel (aka Stanley? Seymour)
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st / 7th Cyclist Btn. Service No: 797
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1898 in Hele nr. Bradninch.
Date of Death: 14/08/1915 @ 17 in Bigbury, accidentally drowned.
Cemetery: Bigbury (St. Lawrence) Churchyard Devon. Ref: North of the chancel

Samuel Southwood of Samuel Howard & Annie Southwood– Town Postman GPO – of (1901) Heathcoat Sq. Tiverton – His father was born Ottery St. Mary.

War record says of Lower Hill, Hele, Bradninch – he enlisted at Cullompton and soon joined the Cyclist battalion who appeared to undertake a very valuable and dangerous communication role.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Squires, William George
Rank: Gunner
Regiment: Canadian Field Artillery
Unit Text: 6th Bde.
Service No: 91561
Date of Birth: July-Sept 1889 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 12/10/1916 @ 26
Cemetery: Becourt Military Cemetery, Becordel-Becourt. Ref: I.X.34

Of William & Sarah West End Road. 1891 William was a stoker in Paper Mill from Halberton whilst Sarah was a sorter at the mill.

Attestation records dated 30/06/1915 described as a Helper to a Boiler Maker. Next of Kin William. Address Colechard House, Hele Road.

No previous service.

William was killed in action in France whilst his mother Sarah had died some months previous on 27th January 1916 at 70 and his father William carried on to die 17th March 1937 at the great age of 94 – their son’s death is commemorated on their monument.

 
Stevens, Walter Edward
Rank: Driver
Regiment: Army Service Corps
Unit Text: 1st Coy.
Service No: T4/039584
Date of Birth: 1884 in Taunton
Date of Death: 22/10/1915 @ 21
Cemetery: Aldershot Military Cemetery. Ref: AF. 1925

Husband of Eliza (Rowland) Stevens, of 3, Fore St., Bradninch, Cullompton, Devon – married in Tiverton area.

 
Tottle, Frank
Rank: Private
Regiment: Enlisted Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment)
Unit Text: 75th Btn. Service No: 1024184
Date of Birth: 28th February 1889 in Bradninch.
Date of Death: 06/11/1918 - just days before Armistice
Cemetery: Aulnoy Communal Cemetery, Nord, France. Ref: A.3.11.

Son of Charlotte Tottle who was born in Ashbrittle, Somerset & was forced to leave the Taunton area after becoming pregnant & gave birth to Georgina Annie Tottle by unknown male in Tiverton Workhouse 15th February 1874 – although birth registration records place her birth a year later.

Charlotte was a rag-sorter in the local paper mill and the family were all together in Back Street in 1891. Charlotte died March Qtr 1894 in Tiverton district at 46 years old.

Georgina in 1901 seems to be heading the family in Bradninch, a paper sorter at the Paper Mill although in 1901. Frank was listed as residing in Tiverton Workhouse apparently with an unknown – Thomas Clatworthy ?

Georgina may have already given birth to a daughter Georgina Annie born Jan-March 1894 and recorded in 1901.

When war was declared both Frederick & Frank appear to have journeyed to Canada to enlist.

His sister Georgina had by then married Walter L Busby – a Carpenter from Kent – in the summer of 1911 and had a son Wilfred. Walter worked for the local builders Nicks Brothers in the 1920`s in Bradninch and lived in Hen Street, Bradninch.

Frank was described as a Labourer. Georgina was named as Sister & Next of Kin on Attestation Papers.

In 1911 Frank was a labourer & boarder in a Cider factory within Bradninch.

Attestation records dated 06/07/1916 & described as a Labourer with no Military records and resided at 49 Heintzman Ave., Toronto.

Husband of Laura Tottle 29 Keaton Road, Ivybridge, Devon – married Laura L Crabb Jan-Mar 1918 in Plymouth.

 
Venn, William Henry Robert
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 2nd Battalion Service No: 33171
Date of Birth: 1891
Date of Death: 07/03/1917
Cemetery: Thiepval Memorial, France. Ref: Pier and Face 1 C.

1891 is a William R Venn 9 months of William H. and Eliza J. Venn living in Bickleigh. William Snr. Is an Agricultural labourer. In 1901 recorded as a Cattleman.

War records show Robert (as he was often known) was from Bickleigh and enlisted in Cullompton.

Robert was killed in action north of Peronne, France during the German military operation ‘Alberich’ which was a planned withdrawal to new positions on the shorter, more easily defended Hindenburg Line which took place between 9 February and 15 March 1917.

Have a William H R Venn marrying a Kathleen A Tremlett Oct-Dec 1914 in Tiverton District.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 
Vicary, Francis James
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devon Regiment Unit Text: ??
Service No: 267686
Date of Birth: Apr-Jun 1879 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 06/10/1920 @ 41
Cemetery: Bradninch Baptist Burial Ground Ref: East of the chapel.

Francis– labourer to a Builders firm - of Mary Ann V – widow – rag sorter at the paper mills, neighbour of the Bowden’s in Peter Street.

Husband of F. Vicary, of Peter St., Bradninch – married a Florence Coles Perriam Jul-Sept 1909 in Exeter.

Member of Bradninch Rugby Football club 1899-1900.

 
Vinnicombe, Richard Francis
Rank: Private
Regiment: East Surrey Regiment
Unit Text: 1st Btn.
Service No: 33020
Date of Birth: January1881 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 05/10/1917 @ 36
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium. Ref: Panel 79 to 80 and 163A

Richard - labourer in Paper Mill of Thomas & Sarah Vinnicombe – Cross Cottages up near Millway. Thomas 1881 & 1891 he was an Ag’ Lab born Silverton.

Husband of Rose Sophia Charlotte Vinnicombe, of West End, Bradninch, Devon – married Rose Snell Oct-Dec 1907. Rose was sister of Richard & William Snell – who both perished in WW1 – as did Brother-in-law.

Possibly a casualty of Passchendaele see “July 1917 – Passchendaele”

Member of Bradninch Rugby Football club 1899-1900.

 
Wood, Ernest
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: Depot
Service No: 33147
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1894
Date of Death: 08/10/1918
Cemetery: Bradninch Burial Ground. Ref: 150.

Ernest of William & Mary a non-domestic gardener / labourer of Mount Pleasant, Cullompton Hill – 1891 an Agricultural labourer whilst Mary worked in Paper Mill.

Died at Tidworth Military Hospital, Near Salisbury Plain and was buried 13/10/1918 in Bradninch.

Member of Bradninch A.F.C. 1912-13.

Possible victim of the ‘Spanish ‘flu’ epidemic.

 
Wyatt, Frederick Charles
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 1st Btn.
Service No: 7805
Date of Birth: Jan-Mar 1887 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 26/10/1914 @ 27
Cemetery: Bethune Town Cemetery. Ref: B. 17

Frederick son of John (1891 an Agricultural Labourer) born Cullompton & Florence Wyatt (of Halberton) of Hen Street,

Married Violet O Holmes July-Sept 1913 in Tiverton District.

His elder brother William was blind. Enlisted in Exeter although living Bradninch. Died of wounds.

Also commemorated on the Hele Mill plaque.

 

Others with a Bradninch connection who died in WW-I

Adams, Edward Wellington
Rank: Private
Regiment: Canadian Infantry (West Ontario)
Unit Text: 18th Bn.
Service No: 158131
Date of Birth: 01/04/1892 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 08/08/1918 at the Somme
Cemetery: Crucifix Corner Cemetery, Villers-Bretonneux, France Ref: I. A. 15.

Edward was the son of Richard and the late Mary Adams of Silverton. Richard was a Carpenter / joiner and in 1901 was living in Silverton.

Edward’s attestation papers 27th Sept 1915 show him to be living at 655 Dovercourt Rd., Toronto and a carpenter by trade. Had been serving in the 19th Regiment for 12 months.

 
Bidgood, John James
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Somerset Light Infantry
Unit Text: 1st Bn.
Service No: 9318
Date of Birth: Jul-Sept 1893 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 06/07/1915
Cemetery: Talana Farm Cemetery in Belgium. Ref: I. D. 6.

Born in Bradninch of Tom & Bessie Bidgood – Tom (his father) was born Langford, Somerset whilst Bessie came from Silverton. In 1891 Tom & wife was a gardener living with his father William – a shoemaker, & Margaret in Chapple House, Lowman, Tiverton. By 1901 Tom was a Domestic Gardner in Brompton Ralph, Somerset near Wellington.

His death is also acknowledged on the memorial in Cullompton in the Bull Ring.

 
Boobyer, Francis Edward
Rank: Lance Sergeant
Regiment: Royal Warwickshire Regiment
Unit Text: 9th Bn.
Service No: 12530
Date of Birth: Jan – Mar 1894 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 26/01/1917
Cemetery: Amara War Cemetery in Iraq. Ref: XXIV. B. 39.

Born Hele / Bradninch of Amos from Stoke St George, Devon and Sarah. In 1901 Amos was a GWR Signalman in Taunton, Somerset.

The Royal Warwicks were involved in fierce fighting during the taking of Hai Salient in Mesopotania at the time of Francis’ death.

 
Broom, Lewis John
Rank: Captain
Regiment: Welsh Regiment 4th Bn.
Unit Text: attd. King's African Rifles
Service No: ??
Date of Birth: 1884 in Bradninch, Devon
Date of Death: 12/04/1918 at Chirimba Hill, east of Medo, Portuguese East Africa (today named Mozambique).
Cemetery: 14. Pemba Cemetery Mozambique

Son of John and Ellen (Sarah Ellen) Broom (née Heal born in Bradninch), of Aboukir Villa, Willey Ave., St. Thomas, Exeter and brother of Thomas Henry.

The family lived on Fore Street and John was a Railway Plate Layer (1891). Had moved to Newton St Cyres by 1901 then to Exeter.

Born in Bradninch in the December Quarter of 1884.

1911 Lewis was overseas as a Lance Corporal in the R.M.L.I.

Was awarded the MBE.

Between the 12 - 24 April 1918 Nyasaland Battalions of the King's African Rifles where in fierce combat with a withdrawing German Schutztruppe near Medo and Mbalama Hill, Portuguese East Africa.

On 12 April 2/2KAR, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel W T H Gregg DSO (Royal Irish Fusiliers) moved off through the bush on a compass bearing to get south of Chirimba Hill. At 1100 hours 2/2 KAR had its first contact in a knee-deep swampy location. The contact soon turned into an area ambush that had been sprung by three of Kohl's field companies.

2/2 KAR quickly splashed through the mud to form a U-shaped perimeter, repelling attacks on all three faces. The British Askari were fighting from holes scooped in the mud whilst the Germans had the advantage of operating from better ground. The Schutztruppe kept attacking from different directions, swiftly moving their machine guns around to provide fire support. 2/2 KAR fought where it stood and was severely pressed.

Most of the battalion were young Askari but they were held together by the experienced non-commissioned officers (NCOs), who could be seen nonchalantly taking pinches of snuff in between shouting fire orders.

As ammunition ran short runners were sent to the rear for fresh supplies, but the enemy machine gunners were waiting and knocked them down. 2/2 KAR was in a tense situation when 1/ 2 KAR caught up with it.

1/2 KAR, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel D W Reynolds (York and Lancaster Regiment), was following 2/2 KAR through the bush, and the battalion's porters had been closed up with the main body. The battalion had just put out a picquet on Chirimba Hill when the enemy fired on 2/2 KAR. This firing caused the porters to panic, drop their loads and flee to the rear. Whilst attempting to stop his fleeing porters, the 1/2 KAR Transport Officer Captain John Lewis Broom MBE, (Welsh Regiment and Military Labour Corps), was killed.

 
Broom, Thomas Henry
Rank: Private
Regiment: Household Cavalry and Cavalry of the Line (incl. Yeomanry and Imperial Camel Corps)
Unit Text: 1st (King's) Dragoon Guards attd. 1st Life Guards.
Service No: 6249
Date of Birth: 1886 in Bradninch, Devon
Date of Death: 02/11/1914 died of wounds received.
Cemetery: III. P. 14. Arras Road Cemetery, Roclincourt, France

Son of John and Ellen Broom, of Aboukir Villa, Willey Avenue, St. Thomas, Exeter and brother of Lewis John. The family lived on Fore Street and John was a Railway Plate Layer (1891). Had moved to Newton St Cyres by 1901 then to Exeter.

In 1911 Thomas was a private in the 1st Kings Drogoon Guards in Ambala Punjab, India.

Killed in action in Theatre of War France & Flanders

 
Conibeer, Edward James
Rank: Private
Regiment: Royal Army Medical Corps
Unit Text: 14th Field Ambulance
Service No: 80988
Date of Birth: 1886 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 06/11/1917 @ 21
Cemetery: Menin Road South Military Cemetery, Ypres, Belgium. Ref: III. G. 12.

Born Bradninch and enlisted in Exeter. Recorded as Killed in action. In 1891 may have been the son of Samuel & Anne of Little Toms cottages near Cullompton. Samuel came from Dunsford & an Agricultural Labourer.

Married an Alice Mansell Oct-Dec 1915 in Tiverton district. His death is also

Commemorated on the War Memorial in Cullompton in the Bull Ring.

 
Floyd, Stanley
Rank: Rifleman
Regiment: Rifle Brigade
Unit Text: 12th Bn.
Service No: S/16290
Date of Birth: ???
Date of Death: 07/12/1918
Cemetery: Etaples Military Cemetery Ref: XLVII. B. 13.

Husband of A. M. Floyd, of Whitneys, West End, Bradninch, Devon.

 
Huish, Francis (“Frank”)
Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 5th Btn.
Service No:  
Date of Birth: December Quarter of 1892 in Bradninch
Date of Death: 28/08/1918 @ 25
Cemetery: Chambrecy British Cemetery, France. Ref: IV. B. 1.

Francis ("Frank") Huish of William J. and Amelia K. Huish (née Chudleigh) of Exeter, they were married in Edmonton June QTR 1882.

Francis was born in Bradninch in the December Quarter of 1892 and lived in West End town, Bradninch his father William was a Mercantile Clerk. Sometime before 1901 the family moved to 47, Union Street, ST Thomas, Exeter as William took employment as an Accountant’s clerk.

By 1911 William had died and the whole family were working for Solicitors or Surveyors with Francis a clerk to Estate agent and Surveyor.

Francis was reported as Killed in action.

 
Lawry, David
Rank: Lance Corporal
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment 1st Bn .
Unit Text:  
Service No: 15223
Date of Birth: 1890 in Ystradyfvdwg, Glam
Date of Death: 23/04/1917
Cemetery: Arras memorial, France Ref: Bay 4

Husband of F Stark, formerly Lawry, of 1 New Street, Bradninch, Devon.

Enlisted in Maestag, Glam and living in Bridgend. Was killed in action.

In 1911 was living with his brothers and (married) sister on 3 Gladys St., Coedely, Llantrisant, Pontypridd and Working down the mines at a Colliery.

 
Long, John
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment.
Unit Text: 10th Service Battalion
Service No: 236070
Date of Birth: 1883 in North Tawton
Date of Death: 07/12/1916
Cemetery: Karasoului Military cemetery, Greece Ref: B.339

Son of John and Hannah Long of Broadclyst. 1901 - Father John was a watchmaker living in Holmedale on Fore Street with his family.

John died in Salonika.

Did John marry Bessie Mortimore in 1909?

 
Mountstephen, Charles Henry
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.,
Service No: 9117
Date of Birth: 1890 in Bradninch, Devon
Date of Death: 06/11/1918 died of Pneumonia.
Cemetery: In new (West) part. Cemetery Beer Church Cemetery

Son of Mrs. Elizabeth Mountstephen. In 1901 Elizabeth was a charwoman living with her family on Parsonage street. Charles a paper mill hand.

Charles was husband of E. Mountstephen, (maybe Emily Snook) of 36, Mayfield Rd., Dalston, London.

Born September quarter 1890 in Bradninch, Exeter.

1911 recorded as being in Barracks in North Tidworth, Andover, Wiltshire

 
Murch, Ernest Arthur
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 2nd Bn.
Service No: 290322
Date of Birth: 1894 in Bradninch.
Date of Death: 26/04/1918 @ 24
Cemetery: Crouy British Cemetery, Crouy-Sur-Somme Ref: I. B. 25.

Brother of Frederick and son of John & Emma Jane Murch of 16, Ellerhayes Cottages, Hele, Devon.

John was a Carpenter from Broadclyst.

Died of wounds received.

 
Murch, Frederick George
Rank: Private
Regiment: Worcestershire Regiment
Unit Text: 10th Bn.
Service No: 241972
Date of Birth: Sept-dec 1895 in Ellerhayes
Date of Death: 06/07/1915
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium Ref: 75 to 77

Brother of Ernest and son of John & Emma Jane Murch of 16, Ellerhayes Cottages, Hele, Devon.

John was a Carpenter from Broadclyst.

Died of wounds received.

 
Palmer, Herbert Slader
Rank: Corporal
Regiment: Dragoon Guards
Unit Text: 5th Bn.
Service No: 6276
Date of Birth: Jul-Sept 1899 in Cullompton
Date of Death: 31/10/1914 @ 25
Cemetery: Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Belgium. Ref:

Born Cullompton & Enlisted Exmouth where resident. Son of John Palmer of Beacon Terrace, Bradninch, Devon.

Husband of Daisy Cornish (formerly Palmer) of Egremont Road, Exmouth, Devon. Killed in action.

 
St Hill Saint Hill, Colis George Herbert
Rank: Lt Colonel
Regiment: Royal North Devon Hussars – served 18 years. G/S says – Sherwood Foresters
Unit Text:  
Service No:  
Date of Birth: 23 June 1865
Date of Death: 08 July 1917 @ 53

Cemetery: Buried at Neuville Bourjonval, near Ytres. Substantial memorial in Bradninch Burial Ground. Ref: Near entrance gates. Also a memorial in the church.

Served for 18 years in the North Devon Hussars.

Was sent to Gallipoli in September 1915 & transferred to command of the 6th Battn. Lincolnshire Regt. & took part in the evacuation of Suvla Bay, then rejoined his regiment in Egypt. Then served with the Expeditionary force in France in Flanders from Feb 1917. Killed in action 8th July 1917 by a sniper near Beaucamp & Villers Plinch in his 53rd year whilst commanding the 2/5 Sherwood Foresters.

He was awarded the Matabeleland Medal 1893, Matabele 1896 with clasp and Central Africa with clasp 1898.

He married at Queen’s Gate, London, S.W. 23rd January 1899 to Rose Ammabel daughter of the late Sir Spencer Maryon Wilson of Charlton House in Kent, 10th Bart., and had two children; Hereward born 2nd November 1904 and Colline Ammabel born 16th Nov 1899.

Mentioned in despatches 07/11/1917 for “gallant & distinguished services in the field”. Rose Annabel St Hill passed away 25th November 1949.