“They would be bitterly disappointed if they could see how few really care”

Enthusiasm was flagging among those who had committed to praying for the troops in Cookham Dean – but the village’s children cared about injured horses.

The Vicar’s Letter

Might I plead once more for more regular attendance at our ordinary Intercession Services? Why has the attendance dropped in numbers so seriously – especially on Wednesdays at 11? As far as possible I vary the Services so that they should not be the same – and I would urge those who began well and attended so regularly during the first months of the war to begin again. ‘Be not weary of doing well’, says St. Paul, who there enforces a lesson we all need to learn over and over again. The thoughts of so many on Active Service turn for comfort and support to the thought that at certain times, ‘Many are gathered together praying’ for them in the Church which at home they know best and love most; and I fear they would be bitterly disappointed if they could see how few really care to come with any regularity to the Services provided for them. Do think of this, and act upon it.

The Roll of Honour

The promotion of Pte. E. Blinko to be Corporal should have been notified some months ago. We should like to congratulate most heartily Capt. Vesci Batchelor M.G.C. (elder son of the Vicar of Cookham), who has recently been promoted Major, and 2nd Lieut. C. Edwards promoted Lieut.

Parish Registers

The children of the school have made a Collection on behalf of the Wounded Horses Fund, and have sent up £1 to the R.S.P.C.A. Society.


Cookham Dean parish magazine, November 1917 (D/P43B/28A/11)

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Two more dear young lads have joined the honoured dead

Sad news came for two Cookham Dean families, while other men were still joining up.

At the time of writing two more lives of dear young lads have passed from the list of those on Active Service to the number of those of the Honoured Dead who have given their lives for their King and Country. Sidney John Godfrey, of the Royal Berks Regt., and Edward Garrett, of the Grenadier Guards. The death of the first has been officially notified in The Gazette, and the news of the latter, received at present only through private sources, is of too circumstantial a nature, alas, to leave any room for doubt as to the actual fact, All alike join in deep sympathy for the fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, in their hour of sorrow.

The Roll of Honour
The following promotions are announced:- Lieut. Brian Lawrence, of the Nth. Staff Regt., is now Captain in the 4th Yorkshire Light Infantry; Sec. Lieut. Randall E. Hunt, A.S.C., is now Lieutenant; Pte Cecil Edwards, of the 13th City of London Regiment, is now Sec. Lieut. In the 8th Middlesex; Frederick Woodbridge is made Lance Corporal.

William Fitchett has enlisted in the 43rd battalion RFA; Alfred Tomlin and William Tomlin have joined the AOD; and Frederick Piercey (making the sixth of his family) has enlisted in the Royal Berks Regt. Lce Corporal Frederick Woodbridge has been badly wounded; Ernest Blinko and Charles Druce have each been wounded a second time; while as mentioned above Sidney John Godfrey and Edward Garrett were killed in action on Sept. 25th and on Oct. 17th respectively.

Cookham Dean parish magazine, November 1915 (D/P43B/28A/31)

A soul-stirring example in Cookham Dean

Cookham Dean was proud of the many young men who had answered the call of their country, including those who had been killed. Unusually, they also honoured the men who had volunteered, but been rejected on medical grounds.

The Roll of Honour.

It is with very mingled feelings that this paragraph is written. Cookham Dean may well be proud of its Roll of Honour, which is published again this month. Many names have been added to it, since it was issued last in April, of lads who have responded to their Country’s Call and whose names are now added to those who earlier set them such a soul-stirring example.

One name is removed from the list of the living and finds a place among the honoured dead who have given their lives for their country- Major Richard Saker, Connaught Rangers, recently attached to the 5th Batt. Australian Infantry. He took a gallant part in the action on the occasion of the landing of the Expeditionary Force at the Dardanelles, was wounded, but, after receiving surgical aid, immediately returned to the firing line and was shot down at once by an enemy sniper. Major Saker had served in the South African War and held the Queen’s Medal, with four clasps. He was in the 38th year of his age, and leaves a widow and a dear little boy to mourn his loss, to whom we offer our respectful sympathy. A Memorial Service for Captain Saker was held in Church on the Sunday after the sad news had been received, June 27th.

Since the April list was issued Major Henderson has been mentioned in despatches and promoted Lieut.-Colonel. 2nd Lieuts. Brian Lawrence (‘Dial Close’) and Russell Simmons have been promoted Lieutenants. Sergeant William Markham distinguished himself at Hill 60, near Yprès, in a gallant action and the D.C.M. (Distinguished Conduct Medal) has been conferred upon him; he merits our very heartiest congratulations this distinction. Pte. Ernest Blinko, with others in his Company, 9th County of London (Queen Victoria’s Rifles) has been offered a commission, but, after consideration, preferred to remain as he was; nevertheless, the offer itself is a compliment which onwe are certain was well deserved. Pte. Charles Piercey has been promoted Sergt., and Pte. Ernest Horne is now Corpl.

On the Supplementary List, alas, we have lost two. 2nd Lieut. Bian Lawrence (‘Mountfield,’ Maidenhead), only son of our kind friends, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Lawrence, was killed in action on June 1st; he was only 17 years of age, but had already proved his worth a gallant, reliable officer, and was a young soldier of the greatest promise; he had endeared himself alike to his brother officers and the men under his command. The dear boy has given his life for his country, and we are proud to think that his boyhood’s days were spent in this parish; had it been possible, we would have considered it a great honour if his body could have been laid in our Churchyard. To his parents and grandfather we offer our deepest and most respectful sympathy, well knowing that life in this world can never be the same for them again. Sergent Ernest Lemmon died of wounds on May 9th; he was not known here, but for months past our prayers have been offered for him and others that God would save and defend them, and we believe that those prayers have been answered as God knows best.

It is only right that the names of those who would otherwise have been on the Roll of Honour but for the misfortune that, after examination by Military Doctors, they have been pronounced medically unfit to join His Majesty’s Forces, should be recorded in the Magazine: – Albert Harris (nr. Dean Farm), Sidney George Hunt (Spike Hatch), Harry Jordan (Dean Farm), Alfred Luker (Orchard Cottages), James Price (Primrose Cottage), Harry West (School Cottages), have all offered themselves, all honour to them, but for the above reason could not be accepted. It may be that there are one or two more whose names have not reached me. It is most satisfactory to feel that there are very few young men in this place who are content to abide at home when a Call, such as never before, has sounded in the ears of the Nation, has been made to them. Why in their case has the Call been made to them in vain?

Cookham Dean parish magazine, July 1915 (D/P43B/28A/11)

Cookham Dean’s roll of honour

As the year drew to a close, Cookham Dean announced the latest roll of honour of parishioners serving their country (carefully listed by rank).  Two (tragically, members of the same family) had already paid the ultimate price:

Roll of Honour
The Roll of Honour has been carefully revised, corrected and added to and it contains, it is believed, a complete list of those who have offered themselves from Cookham Dean and Pinkneys Green for the service of their country.
Major Herbert Clark – London Royal Field Artillery
Major C Crookshank – Royal Engineers
Major J Henderson – Army Ordnance Dept
Capt. Tomlinson – Cavalry Reserve of Officers
Lieut. Reginald Geard – XVth Lancers (Indian Army)
Lieut. Cecil Saunders – Royal Flying Corps
Sec. Lieut. Lawrence – North Staffordshire (Prince of Wales’) Regiment
Sec. Lieut. Hewitt Pitt – Royal Field Artillery
Sec. Lieut. Russell Simmons – 3rd Royal Berks Regiment
Sec. Lieut. John A del Riego – 24th County of London (Queen’s) Regiment
Sec. Lieut. Randall E Hunt – Army Service Corps
Sec. Lieut. Douglas A A Geard – 3rd (King’s Own) Hussars
Sec. Lieut. Frank Snell – 6th Royal Berks Regiment
Sec. Lieut. Robert Kersey – Army Service Corps
Arthur Bampton –5th Gloucester, ASC
Henry Bishop – Royal Engineers
Ernest Blinko – 9th County of London (Queen Victoria’s) Rifles
Arthur Carter – Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry
William Carter – 2nd Royal Berks Regiment
Gerald Clark – Royal Engineers (Signalling Squadron)
Donovan Deadman – County of London Sharpshooters
Arthur Dore – Lance Corporal – 4th Royal Berks Regiment
Charles Druce – 2nd Royal Berks Regiment
Cecil B Edwards – 13th County of London (Kensington) Regiment
Bertram Ellis – 28th County of London (Artists’) Regiment
Albert Franklin – Army Service Corps (Mechanical Trans.)
George Franklin – Royal Flying Corps
Jesse Garrett – Royal Berks Regiment
Alfred Grove, RN – HMS Attentive
Thomas Grove, RN – HMS Hampshire
Harry Groves – Royal Berks Regiment
Percy Harris – Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment)
Thomas Hatch – Army Service Corps
Albert Higgs – Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry
Arthur Horne – Royal Engineers
Harry Hunt – Rifle Brigade (Reported missing since Aug. 26th)
William King – Royal Field Artillery
Alan Lidderdale – Public Schools OTC
Harry Long – Royal Engineers
Archibald Luker, Sergeant, 7th West Surrey (Queen’s) Regiment
William Markham, Sergeant – 1st Royal West Kent (Queen’s Own) Regiment
William North – 3rd Royal Berks Regiment
Albert Owen – Royal Field Artillery
Charles Piercey – 4th Royal Berks Regiment
Gilbert Piercey – Army Service Corps (Mechanical Trans.)
Herbert Prince, Corporal – 3rd Royal Berks Regiment
Frank Sandalls – Royal Army Medical Corps
William Sandalls – 2nd Royal Berks Regiment (Wounded at Mons, but has since rejoined his regiment)
George Skinner – Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry
Albert Stubbles – Royal Engineers
Frederick Tuck – Royal Engineers
George Tuck – Army Service Corps
Harley Vaughan-Morgan – Inns of Court OTC (Invalided)
Scott Ware, Corporal – Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry
Harold White – 4th Royal Berks Regiment
Harry White – Army Service Corps (South Midland Brigade)
Herbert Winkworth – 6th Royal Berks Regiment
James Winkworth – 1st Royal Berks Regiment
William Winkworth – Royal Field Artillery
Frederick Woodbridge – 5th Royal Berks Regiment
Harry Woodbridge – 5th Royal Berks Regiment

RIP
George Carter, killed in action September 14th
Robert Carter, killed in action November 13th

Cookham Dean parish magazine, December 1914 (D/P43B/28A/11)

A hero’s death: who will follow his example?

One of the first Berkshire men to fall in the war was a regular soldier from Cookham Dean. He was killed at the First Battle of the Aisne which ended with stalemate. He was a private in the 1st Battalion of the Royal Berkshire Regiment. The parish magazine gave the following tribute to him:

In Memoriam
On Sept. 14th, in the Battle of the Aisne, George Carter, of Hoveden Cottages, was killed in action. George Carter was a born soldier, he was only 23 years of age, and had served nine years in the army and had joined the Militia six months previously to entering the Regulars. He came home in February last from eight years’ service in India, the same bright cheery face greeting us as it used to do in old days when he was a boy in school. He was one of the first to be called up and went off waving his goodbyes to his many friends in the village early one morning at the beginning of August. He lies in a soldier’s grave in France, having died at the post of duty a hero’s death. His name will not be forgotten in Cookham Dean.

The list of all those who are on Active Service at the Front or who are on Home Defence or who have recently joined the Army as Recruits or who are otherwise in training will be found below. I hope it is accurate and complete; I have done my best to make it so; but it is only too possible that a mistake may have occurred here or there, if so, I hope my attention will be called to it, and that anyone concerned will kindly accept my apologies for it. It has been my earnest endeavour to avoid mistakes, and I have repeatedly asked for information, but scarcely anyone has responded to my request. Our daily prayers in Church are offered for these dear men and lads who have so nobly come forward at the call of duty. It is not too late for others to place their names on this roll of honour and there are some few whom I should be proud and pleased to see doing so. Is there no one who feels an ambition to take George Carter’s place?

Roll of Honour
The first list contains the names of those whose homes are in Cookham Dean, and who, it is believed, are actually serving at the Front or who are on Home Defence. The second list contains the names of those who have, since war was declared, joined either the Officers’ Training Corps or who are in training as recruits. On the third list are the names of some closely connected with Cookham Dean but not actually resident here.
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