Missing, believed killed

There was news of several Burghfield men.

THE WAR
Casualties

R T Montagu (East Surrey) missing, believed killed
Harry Woolford (5th Royal Berks) missing
F J Painter (5th Royal Berks) prisoner
Cecil Gibbs (6th Ox. And Bucks) wounded
G Budd discharged (eyesight)

Burghfield parish magazine, February 1918 (D/EX725/4)

Advertisements

His old headmaster attended the funeral

22 year old Arthur Gibbs, who sadly succumbed to his wounds, was remembered by his old primary school headmaster.

April 23rd 1917

Arthur Gibbs, an old scholar, was buried in All Saints Church this afternoon. He was wounded in France and died at Leeds. The Head Master attended the Funeral.

Wokingham Wescott Road School log book (C/EL87, p. 173)

Added to the Earley prayer list

More men had joined up from Earley.

LIST OF MEN SERVING IN HIS MAJESTY’S FORCES

The following additional names have been added to our prayer list:

George Harper, Herbert Harper, Charles Young, Walter Burgess, Sam Hunt, Thomas Wilson, William Bright, Kenneth Comport, William Gardner, Cecil Gardner, Charles Ludgate, James Belson, James Belson junior, Richard Belson, John Brown, George Brown, George Cane, Isaac Mason, Everard Webster, Charles Lambourne, Walter Purver, Harry Rickards, Charles Hopgood.

In addition to those already mentioned, we especially commend the following to your prayers:

SICK: David Gwynne, Walter Bluring.
WOUNDED: Arthur Belson.
PRISONER OF WAR: Albert Gibbs.
KILLED IN ACTION: Arthur Palmer, Victor Burgess, William Bartlett.

Earley St Peter parish magazine, February 1917 (D/P191/28A/24)

“The war is doing us a lot of good”

Maysie Wynne-Finch wrote to her brother Ralph Glyn in Egypt with the news that she and her wounded husband were going to be based in Windsor until he was well enough to return to the Front. Their aunt Sybil was still receiving letters from her son Ivar, written before his recent death in action.

Feb 11/16
11 Bruton St W
Darlingest R.

I had a mysterious message from Meg’s house today saying Colonel Sykes had called leaving a small parcel from you, & saying he was just home from the Dardenelles [sic]. I had the said parcel brought here, & it is a couple of torch refills apparently unused from Stephenson. I must get hold of Colonel Sykes for an explanation.

Our plans are now fixed up to a point. The doctor, [dear?] man, said John was not to return to France for 3 months, this being so the regimental powers that be used much pressure to get him to reconsider his refusal of the 5th Battalion Adjutancy, & so after being told they won’t try & keep him after he’s fit for France, he has said yes. There is no doubt it’s good useful work for home service, if it has to be, & I am glad for him, though I suppose I shall now see little or nothing of him at all. He begins on Monday. He went house hunting on Tuesday – a depressing job, as there are hardly any houses to be had, & those one more beastly than the other! However – nothing matters – it’s just wonderful to be there at all. We shall take what we can & when we can – that’s all. The house we long for, but it’s not yet even furnished, is one, & a charming old house done up & owned by that old bore Arthur Leveson Gower, you remember the man, we met at the Hague, years ago. Tony has been ill again with Flu, the 2nd time this year…

We’ve just had tea with Aunt Syb. She got another letter from Ivar written Jan 1, last Friday. It’s awful for her, & yet I think there is most joy, rather than pain, the hopeless silence is for a moment filled, though but as it were by an echo. Joan looks pale & oh so sad. She’s wonderfully brave & unselfish to Aunt Syb. Poor little Joanie…

I hear Pelly’s opinion is that Kut must fall. London was filled with rumours of a naval engagement on Monday & Tues, but as far as I can make out without foundation.

I met Ad[miral] Mark Ker[r] in the street the other day, & we had a long talk. I fear he’s not improved – & I think very bitter at being out of it all. He was interesting over Greece etc, but there is so much “I” in all he says, one cannot help distrusting a great deal. He’s very upset as he was starting to return to Greece a week ago & at the very last moment was stopped, & now he’s simply kicking his heels, not knowing what’s going to happen next. “Tino” now is of course his idol & here – I feel a pig saying all this, as I do feel sorry for him, & he was most kind. Yesterday he asked us to lunch to meet Gwladys [sic] Cooper, Mrs Buckmaster, how lovely she is, & seems nice, almost dull John thought! We then went on to the matinee of her new play. Most amusing, she is delightful, & Hawtrey just himself…

As you can imagine air-defence & the want of it is now all the talk. One of our airships has taken to sailing over this house from west to east every morning at 8.30 am. I hear we broke up 6 aeroplanes & killed 3 men the night of the last raid. All leave is now stopped from France. We’ve just lunched with Laggs Gibbs, who came over a day before the order came out. He says it’s said to be because of some new training scheme we have & not because of any offensive either way.

John had a Med Board today, & narrowly escaped being given another 3 months sick leave apparently. They implored him to go to Brighton & said he was very below parr [sic] etc, however he bounced them into giving him home duty, & they’ve made it 3 months, & “no marching”, etc, tc, etc. Of course as Adjutant he wouldn’t have that anyhow.

We think we have got a house, but can’t get in for a fortnight.

Bless you darling
Your ever loving Maysie (more…)

Over from Highclere

The latest from Florence Vansittart Neale includes a visit from a wounded friend who was being nursed at Highclere Castle in Hampshire (the inspiration for TV’s Downton Abbey).

18 July 1915
Heard from Sep. He back at Dardanelles on 7th….

No fresh news in Observer. Strike continuing.

Lionel Gibbs came over from Highclere. Badly wounded left arm….

Read “The Real Crown Prince”.

Diary of Florence Vansittart Neale (D/EX73/3/17/8)

He poked his head over the trench and was shot dead

More tragic deaths came to the notice of diarists Wiliam Hallam and Florence Vansittart Neale.

William Hallam
Up to Wantage by 20 to 10 train. It was an ideal spring day, one of those days when every one you meet wishes you a good morning. I heard the cuckoo this morning for the first time this year when going up from Wantage Road. For dinner had asparragras [sic], first time for years…. Came back by last train. A good many soldiers were travelling back to Swindon mostly Scots for Draycott and amongst those who got out here was the tallest chap I’ve ever seen in my life 6ft. 6 I should think, an officer….

I was told up at Wantage young Whettle was shot dead in his trench. One of the men said “what’s all that smoke” and young W. poked his head over the trench and was shot dead.

Florence Vansittart Neale
Heard sad news – Arnold Vansittart killed – also saw Dick Powell wounded & missing. Telephoned Katie Gibbs, heard he picked up by Black Watch – in some hospital in France.

Diaries of William Halam (D/EX1415/23) and Florence Vansittart Neale (D/EX73/3/17/8)