IN MEMORy by Pierre Vandervelden

The visit of Commonwealth graves in Communals Cemeteries & Churchyards in Belgium & France

LIJSSENTHOEK Military Cemetery (Poperinge) (West Vlaanderen Belgium)

The entry now and 1922 Photo Courtesy Steve Morse
Commonwealth graves on left French graves on right and an American grave in front (They are three in this cemetery) Pte Harry A. King 3th Cavalery 20/09/1918, Harry's brother, Reginald (RASC) is also buried here.
A very interesting photo, taken around 1922.
Each wooden cross is removed to put a white stone.
Photo Courtesy Steve Morse (UK)
Staff Nurse Nellie Spindler Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service
Photo Courtesy Dr Robyn Holliday (U.K.)
Private Edwin John Hewitt 14/03/1916
Have been recorded as Hewett, wich is incorrect.

For Mr Simon Bull (Northamptonshire U. K.)

We Are Seven Ranks of Kettering Soldier Family Again Broken                 The regrettable news has been received that Pte. E. Hewitt, son-in-law of Mr. T. Wright, 4, Carey-street, Kettering, has died as the result of wounds on the battlefield in France.
Much sympathy is felt for the widow, and for Mr. T. Wright, the latter of whom had six sons and one son-in-law at the front. One of the sons, Pte. Hervert Wright, 1/4th Northants Regiment, was killed at the Dardanelles.
The others are Pte. Walter C. Wright, 1/4th Northants ; Pte. Thomas E. Wright, 3rd Northants ; Pte. Wm. H. Wright, 3rd Northants ; and Pte. Josh. Wright, 3rd Northants.
The Deceased (Pte. E. Hewitt) was a native of Kettering, and 30 years of age. A year last, September, he joigned the 7th Northlants, and up to that time he had been employed at the Excelsior Stone Works, Finedon. He went to France with his regiment at the latter end of August. The last time he wrote a postcard home was about March 14th, and by the date it was received in England he had passed away, as the result of wounds.
A chaplain wrote to the bereaved widow as follows :
- « Two days ago I wrote informing you of your husband being wounded. I now regret to have to inform you that he passed away at 9.30 on the 14th. His rase was quite hopeless from the first, but everything was done for him that possibly could have been done. I can only say that God will be with you, and give you that consolation which He alone can give until the time when you and your husband shall be again reunited, when wars have ceased, and there shall be no more parting. -Yours faithfully, D. Ellis Rowlands, C.F. »
( newspaper : the Kettering Leader 14 April 1916

Lt Christian Creswell Carver 23/07/1917 aged 20
Rfm Albert Bogg 11/11/1918 aged 26
Pte Ivor Lewis 01/01/1916
S/Lt Theodor Milton Plaum 24/09/1917 aged 22
Pte Maurice Adrian Terlier 17/10/1917 aged 20
L/Cpl Robert Morrison 23/08/1917 DoW aged 29
Robert was born in Lossiemouth, Scotland on 27/05/1888, entered the field of action on 23/08/1914 and died exactly three years after arriving.
He left a wife Helen (Nellie) and a son, Robert born 31/12/1914.
For his grandson Charlie Morrison
Pte William George Henry Bendall 31/10/1917 aged 29
For his granddaughter Jackie Loos (nee Bendall) (Cape Town)
Pte Sydney Mackness 01/08/1917 aged 22
L/Cpl Jesse Roland Robbins 1895 - 01/10/1917
for his niece Daphne May Carter nee Robbins and great niece Irene J Harvey
Pte Jack Rankin Millen 22/10/1917
Pte Frederick James Carson 22/10/1917 aged 22
Pte John W. Canning 06/07/1918 aged 19
Sjt Thomas Bishop 27/10/1917 aged 31
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
Lt George Humphrey Dicketts 21/07/1918 aged 24
for Lisa Dicketts
Cpl Francis Henry Field 22/08/1917 aged 30
Pte Samuel Trim 24/12/1916 aged 33
Pte George Ernest Message 20/10/1917 aged 29
Pte Richard Edge 09/12/1916
Pte Eric Herbert Bigland 05/01/1918 aged 24
Ackworth scholar (Eric is 1st right top rank)
L/Sjt Adam "Eddie" Young 11/02/1918 aged 33
Adam was born in Alnwick, where he enlisted on 01/09/1914
He was sent overseas on 21/04/1915
Cpt George Edwin Chissell MC 29/10/1917 aged 25
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
Photo of  portrait courtesy of DMD Services
Pte Claude Connell 14/08/1915
Pte Neville Fitches 25/02/1917 aged 20
Sjt Edward Devine 03/03/1919
Pte Hugh Glass 04/10/1917 aged 42
Hugh was born in Melbourne, Victoria, he was wounded during the Battle of Broodsiende (Passchendaele) and died the same day at the 17th CCS.
for Rache Lowis and family
Sjt Walter john Longworth 12/10/1917 aged 24
Pte John Herbert Sheffield 17/11/1917
He enlisted in the 116th (Ontario County) Bn, 15/11/1915. He was single, former a farmer, living in Mara (Brechin).
Born in Sutton, a son of Thomas H. Sheffield & Susan F. Bloomfield.
After training in Canada, his company went overseas in 07/1916.
His name appears on the Mara Cenotaph, located in front of the Brechin Legion, Branch 488, Concession 4, Brechin
for the Ramara Historical Society
Sper William J. Walters 20/06/1917
Cpl Robert John Hunter 29/01/1886 - 28/05/1917
Robert was born in Magheraknock, Ballynahinch, Northern Ireland
Spr James Coates 31/05/1918 aged 34
2nd/Lt William Heslehurst Archbold 21/10/1918 aged 27
Capt & Adjt William Ernest Ind MC 07/06/1917 aged 25
for Dr H.J. Krijnen
Lt Evan Davies Jones 02/04/1918 aged 25
for David Mole
Lt John Edward Raphael 11/06/1917 aged 35
He was a member of Surrey County Cricket Club in London and is listed on their war memorial.
He also was England rugby player.
for Philip Paine and the members of the Surrey CCC
Pte William Henry Parrish 05/04/1916 aged 18
for Elaine
Cpl Alfred Ernest Knight 02/08/1918 aged 34
for his nephew Roy H Knight
Sjt Harold Brushett 28/12/1916 aged 28
Son of Sarah and the late George Sidney Brushett. Native of Kidderminster, Worcestershire.
Before enlistment, he was employed by the Coventry Chain Co., where he was very highly respected.
He joined the 2nd Dragoon Guards immediately after the outbreak of war and gained a first-class certificate as gymnastic instructor.
He afterwards transferred into the RFa where he speedily rose to the rank of Sergeant.
Harold crossed over to France in 04/1916 when he volunteered for the Trench Mortar Battery.
While engaged in a bombardment of the German lines on 27/12/1916, he received injuries from which he died some hours later.
His widowed mother has received sympathetic letters from the Chaplain of the No. 10, Casualty Clearing Station, France and from Lt G. Tilley, RFA, who states:
"For the last six months he had served under me, and during all that time I could not have wished for a better or more cheerful worker.
I feel that in losing him the Battery has lost its best man."
from the Coventry Graphyc Harold's Obituary, 12/01/1917.
for his great niece Julie and Howard Carter
Pte Victor C. Friberg 11/09/1916
Pte Charles David Friend 28/03/1895 - 04/01/1917
He was born in Croydon and educated in Bynes Road School, Croydon.
Married and former labourer, he enlisted on 04/08/1914.
Pte Stanley Arthur Johnson 08/10/1917
Pte George Hugh Templeton 11/07/1893 - 26/09/1917
Eldest son of 14 children of George and Annie (nee McDonald) Templeton, he was born in Homebush, Victoria (Aus.).
He was wounded on 25/09/1917 during the battle of Polygon Wood and died the day after.
Pte Cyril Vere Whitehead 1896 - 22/06/1917
Born in Lancaster, he was the third of four eldest sons of W. J. and E. E. Whitehead, of 16, Beach St., Bare, Morecambe, Lancs.
He was educated at the Morecambe National School and was serving his time as an electrical engineer at White Cross Mill.
He was in the Fith King's Own at the outbreak of war and went accross with them in 02/1915.
Cyril was a machine gunner and was in the Lewis Gun Section when he was severely wounded by shell fire near Railway Wood on 17/06/1917 and died at the 3rd Canadian Casualty Clearing Station.
A letter dated on 19/06/1917 was received from Capt. W. Harris, informing his parents that "Pte Cyril Whitehead ...your son was an excellent soldier, one of my best Lewis Gunners. He was alway thoroughly reliable, and very keen on his work, so I am extemely sorry to have lost him."
The Rev. J. D. Murray, C. E. Chaplain, in a sympathy letter wrote that "He passing quietly away at11.45 am on June 22. He was buried with military honours.
for his great nephew David Fuller (Chester, UK)
Left to right, Cyril and two of his brothers:
Pte Reginald Whitehead, (David Fuller's gandfather) 5Th K. O. who survived the war;
Pte (stretcher bearer Wilfrid Whithehead, 5th K. O. died in a PoW Camp in Cologne, Germany, on 15/11/1918 aged 20.
A fourth brother, Pte Halcot V. Whitehead also served in the 9th Royal Fusiliers and later in the Royal Engineers.
Pte Ralph Lawson 26/07/1916 aged 22
for Dave Donatelli (Can.)
2nd/Lt Noel Charles Whittall 12/09/1917 aged 22
Noel, 7th Bn, Royal Fusiliers (City Of London Regiment), attached Royal Flying Corps, was killed in action.
He was the eldest son of Frederick James and Catherine Mary Whittall of 11 Torridon Road, Hither Green.
He was educated at Claremont House School and St Dunstan’s College before leaving at the age of 17 to work for Messrs Elliott Brothers Ltd, electrical engineers in Lewisham.
Noel was commissioned into the army in 06/1915 and went to France in 07/1916, where he remained until he transferred to the Royal Flying Corps in 1917.
He returned to the front with the RFC on the 14/08/1917, joining 6 Squadron.
On one occasion during an air fight he encountered four enemy aircraft and managed to down one machine and dispersed the remainder.
Following his death his Squadron Commander wrote:
“He is one of the greatest losses that my squadron could have sustained.
Although he had been with me such a short time I realised what an excellent fellow he was”.
for Kevin Loughnane (Catford Roll of Honour)
Rfm James William Whittington 17/06/1916 aged 22
James, “A” Coy, 12th Bn, Rifle Brigade (The Prince Consort’s Own), died of wounds.
He was the only son of James and Elizabeth Whittington of 18 Killearn Road, Catford.
He was born in Rotherhithe and enlisted in London.
At the time of his death he was reported to have been at the front for 20 months.
On the 22/06/1917 his family placed the following In Memoriam notice in the Kentish Mercury:
“On June 17th 1916, Rifleman J. W. Whittington, aged 22, only son of Mr. and Mrs. Whittington, of 18 Killearn-road, Catford.
He died defending his country and those he loved.
Beloved by all who knew him. Dad, Mum and sister Rosie”
for Kevin Loughnane (Catford Roll of Honour)
Pte James Frederick Oswald Thorp 27/07/1918 aged 19
James, 10th Battalion, The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) was killed in action.
He was the son of Frederick and Kate Thorp of 130 Ardgowan Road, Catford.
He was connected with the Torridon Road Congregational Church, being involved from the Infant’s up to the Boy’s Own classes.
He also taught at the Toye’s Orphanage in Greenwich, where following his death, a dormitory was named in his honour.
His death was reported in the Catford Journal and Bellingham Weekly News:
“Private James Frederick Oswald Thorp, Queen’s Royal West Surrey Regiment who was killed instantly by a shell whilst on night duty in France on July 27, was the only surviving son of Mr. and Mrs. F Thorp, of 130 Ardgowan-road, Catford.
He was only 19 years of age, and was born at East Brixton, and previous to joining the Colours was a clerk in the tea trade.
It was on May 1 of 1917 that he joined the West Surreys, and trained at Aldershot, Colchester, and Cromer, going to France on April 1 of this year."
The first intimation the parents had of their son’s death was by means of a letter received by Mrs. Child, of 92 George-lane, Catford, from her son in France who wrote on June(sic) 27:
“I’m awfully down-hearted to-day.
My chum Thorp (whose sister is in the Torridon-road Choir) was killed last night.
We were a working party going wiring, when Jerry started sending 18-pounders over.
One burst just behind me.
Thorp, who was a few paces behind, was hit in the back of the head and killed instantly; another fellow in my own team was wounded in leg.
Will you please ask dad to write a letter to his people on my behalf ?
I should hardly know how to set about it myself.
I enclose a letter I found in his haversack:
”The chaplain, The Rev. E Sayer Ellis wrote to his sister” Do all you can to be as brave-hearted in your grief as your brother was in danger…Your brother was well thought of by his officers and much liked by his comrades.
You have much reason to be proud of him for the fine way he has given himself in life and in death."
for Kevin Loughnane (Catford Roll of Honour)
Cpl Peter O'Brien 12/04/1918
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
Cpl Joseph Robinson 17/02/1916
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
L/Cpl Robert Jones 06/01/1916
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
Cpl Albert Victor Rackstraw 16/03/1916
For the Royal Welch fusiliers & Dr H.J. Krijnen
Cpl Philip Norman Teare 02/11/1917 aged 24
for Michael Teare
Philip is honoured here.
Pte Hemi Rewharewha 31/12/1917 aged 21
Pte Edward Kelly 22/08/1917 aged 24


10 750 casualties

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Casualties informations come usualy from Commonwealth War Graves Commission, see links for more informations © Pierre Vandervelden - Belgium