Local men who died in WWI

The following men lived or worked in the Bowburn area and died during World War 1. Most were employed at Bowburn Colliery. They are listed in alphabetical order (of surname).


Most, but not all, are remembered on local war memorials – the main ones being the one now in Bowburn Community Centre (formerly the Miners’ Institute) and the one now in Christ the King Church, Bowburn (originally in St. Paul’s Church, Quarrington Hill). Some of them are named on the war memorials at Coxhoe, Tursdale and Shincliffe; one or two are remembered further afield – on memorials at Spennymoor, Easington Colliery, Middlesbrough, for instance.


The colliery village of Bowburn was barely eight years old when World War I began. Its families had come from far and wide and only a few of the men listed below were born and bred in the area. Many of the men’s families moved away subsequently. John Davison published his pioneering work about the men named on Bowburn’s memorials, “Durham Men in the Great War”, in 2000. This was when hardly any relevant information was available on the internet and, perhaps crucially, it was before the 1911 Census was published, revealing the identity and origins of Bowburn Colliery’s first families. The following list tries to fill in some of the details, brought to light in those more recent resources.



Note: This list was first posted in October 2014. Every attempt has of course been made to ensure that all information is accurate. If visitors to this site spot any errors, however, Bowburn LHS would be glad to hear of them. Thank you.


The list does not yet include details of all men named on the Tursdale War Memorial. These will be added when available.


Summaries of most of these notes were prepared for an event at Bowburn Community Centre on 16th October 2015. See Summaries for Poppy project 2015


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Allison, Thomas

• @ 1881 Census, aged 2, born Old Whittington Derbyshire, living at Leasingthorne, Middlestone, Durham, with parents, Alfred & Isabella Allison etc.. His father was a Coal Miner.

• @ 1891 Census, aged 12, born Leasingthorne, Durham [sic], living at Station Road, West Cornforth, Durham, with parents etc..

• Abt May 1900: Married Isabella Cunnah. (Registered at Sedgefield.)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 22, born Derbyshire, living at 10, Catherine Terrace, Felling Durham, with his wife, Isabella (19, born Lancashire). Described as Coal Miner, Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 33, born Chesterfield, Derbyshire, living at 63, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, with his wife, Isabella (30, born Wigan, Lancashire, married for 11 years and having had 4 children, all living), and four children (John, 9, born Felling; Isabella, 8, born West Cornforth; Hilda, 7, born West Cornforth, and Thomas, 3, born West Cornforth). Described as Miner Hewer (Coal).

• husband of Isabella Witham (formerly Allison), 63, Steavenson Street, Bowburn.

• 9 Aug 1915: Killed in action in WWI. Private 13604, 6th Bn. East Yorkshire Regiment, died of wounds at Gallipoli, Dardanelles, Turkey, aged 37

• Remembered on Helles Memorial, Turkey, Panel 51 to 54; on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as T. Allison), and on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Thomas Allison).

• Co. Durham Advertiser 17 Sep 1915 said that Mrs. Allison, of Steavenson Street, Bowburn, had received official news that her husband, Pte Thos. Allison, of 6th East Yorkshire Regiment, formerly residing in West Cornforth, had been missing in the Dardinelles since 9 August.

• His widow re-married, to Bill Witham, in about May 1917.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; Dur. Co. Adv.; CWGC; John Davison (2000); Censuses.

 His son John was killed at Bowburn colliery on 29 September 1930.


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Baker, Ward

• GUESSED to be the W. Baker whose name is remembered on the war memorial in Christ the King Church, Bowburn (and formerly at St. Paul’s Church). As yet I have no evidence that this Ward Baker lived or worked at Bowburn. However his brother Thomas & his family were living at 11, Clarence Street, in 1911.

– Ward Baker may have lived with them after 1911. However note that he was a teacher and presumably did not work at Bowburn Colliery, as the name of W. Baker was put on the church memorial but not on the one in the miners’ institute.

– I have not yet found any connection between the parental family of his wife (née Snowball) and the Snowballs known to be connected with Bowburn.


• @ 1891 Census, aged 6 months, born Page Bank, living in School Row, Page Bank, Willington, Durham, with his parents, Henry J. & Bridget Baker etc.. His father was a Deputy Overman in the local colliery.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 10, born Willington, Durham, living at 106, School Row, Page Bank, Willington, Durham, with parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 20, born Page Bank, Durham, living at 98, School Row, Page Bank, Durham, with his mother & stepfather, Luke Wanless etc.. Described as School Teacher Assistant, County Council.

• Enlistment record not found on Ancestry. Presumably he enlisted in the 17th Lancers. But date and place unknown.

• According to Wikipedia, the 17th Lancers (Duke of Cambridge's Own) was a cavalry regiment, notable for its participation in the Charge of the Light Brigade. At the beginning of WWI, it formed part of the Sialkot Cavalry Brigade of the 1st Indian Cavalry Division. The regiment landed in France in November 1914. In the static warfare of the Western Front, it was often restricted to infantry roles, such as the occupation of trenches.

• 2 Oct 1915: Pte. W[ard] Baker, GS-18081, 17th Lancers, was awarded the 15 Star Medal. Remarks on the Medal Roll Index Card, via Ancestry, were: “Comm. 26.7/17”. He was subsequently awarded the Victory Medal and the British Medal, presumably (to judge by the handwriting and ink colour on the Index Card) after he had transferred to the West Yorks Regt. Remarks in this case appear to read “Ra7. R.M. CC/114/B1/6” and “WX/23 bi[?] df[?]. 25/4/23. NW/1/2736”. [I do not know what that means!]

• Q3 1917: Married Edith Snowball, at Auckland, Durham. Presumably he was on his final leave.

• 21 Sep 1917: Second Lieutenant Ward Baker, 11th Bn., West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Own), died of wounds received in action in WWI, aged 26. [No service/regimental name is given by CWGC.] He is named by the CWGC as the son of the late Henry and Bridget Baker, of Page Bank, Spennymoor, Durham, and husband of Edith Baker, of 2, St. Paul's Gardens, Spennymoor, Co. Durham (i.e. her parents’ home).

• Buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Poperinge, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium, Grave/Memorial Reference: XXIV. H. 15.

• Remembered (as W. Baker) on the war memorial at Spennymoor.

• GUESSED to be the W. Baker whose name is remembered on the memorial at Christ the King Church, Bowburn (and formerly at St. Paul’s Church).

• Sources: Ancestry.com, CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Bamling, Robert

• @ 1891 Census, aged 5, born Langley Moor, Durham, living at 95, High Street, Brandon, Durham, with his parents, Robert & Martha Ann Bamling, etc.. His father was at that time a Coke Drawer but later a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 15, born Langley Moor, Durham, living at 95, High Street, Brandon, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Screen”s Labourer (above ground).

• @ 1911 Census, aged 25, born Langley Moor, Durham, living at Durham Road, Bowburn Colliery, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner (Hewer).

• Q2 1913: Married Ellen Lamb at Durham, Durham.

• Presumably moved to Hemsworth, Yorkshire, soon afterwards. This is where Martha A. Bamling, his daughter, was born in Q2 1914. (Her mother’s maiden name was Lamb.) Hemsworth is about 5 miles south of Pontefract and 10 miles NW of Doncaster, where Robert Bamling enlisted in the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry.

• Abt 1914: Enlisted in King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, at Doncaster, Yorkshire. (Source: British and Irish Military Databases. The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry. [Date not given.])

• 11 Sep 1915: Qualified for the 1914-15 Star, which was awarded for service in France or Flanders between 23 Nov 1914 and 31 Dec 1915, or for service in any theatre between 5 Aug 1914 and 31 Dec 1915. The award was initially given to “R. Bambling” but re-issued to “Robert Bamling” subsequently. (Source: Ancestry.)

• 1 Jul 1916: Corporal Robert Bamling 16369, 9th Battalion, King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, born Meadowfield, Durham, was killed in action at Ypres.

• He was buried in the Gordon Dump Cemetery, Ovillers-La Bouisselle (grave reference: IV. R. 6).

• Not remembered on any war memorials in Bowburn.

• There is no mention of a widow on CWGC. Nor does it mention his parents. Ancestry.com has not got RB’s enlistment and service records.

• His widow is presumed to have been the Ellen Bamling who married John F. Wroe in about November 1923, at Hemsworth, Yorkshire.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; Censuses.


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Barker, James

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Bearpark, Durham, living at 25, Central Street, Helmington Row, Sunnybrow, Auckland, Durham, with his parents, Thomas & Rachel Hannah Barker, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born Durham [City], living at 16, Central Street, Sunnybrow, Willington, Durham, with his parents and siblings. Described as Coal Miner (Waggonway).

• Married Sarah Laverick in Q3 1918 and moved in with his in-laws, at 2, Steavenson Street, Bowburn.

• 4 Oct 1918: James Barker, Second Lieutenant, 21st Training Depot Station, Royal Air Force, killed in WWI, aged 24 years. He died flying an SE5A aircraft at Driffield, Yorkshire. (Home address of self and widow given as 2, Steavenson Street, Bowburn – his parents-in-law’s home.)

• “Flying these planes was incredibly dangerous. During the [first World] War, more pilots died in training than in battle.” – “The First World War from Above”, BBC One, 9:00pm Sun, 7 Nov 2010.

• Buried in Shincliffe churchyard.

• Remembered on the memorial in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as James Barker) and on the war memorial in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe.

• The Durham Advertiser gave his parents as Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Barker, of Shincliffe (with no mention of a widow).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC; John Davison (2000); Durham Chronicle & County Durham Advertiser 11/10/1918; Durham Chronicle 3/10/1919; Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Bell, Robert

• @ 1891 Census, aged 3, born Station Town, Durham, living at 13, Lane Street, Station Town, Hutton Henry, Durham, with his parents, Henry & Elizabeth Ann Bell, etc.. His father was a Coal Miner.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 13, born Station Town, Durham, living at Metal Bridge, Durham, with his parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 23, born Station Town, living at 20, Wylam Street, Bowburn, with his wife, Jenny Moses Bell (22, born Tursdale), and daughter, Ada (9 months, born Bowburn). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• RB was a promising boxer before enlisting. (He was known as “Young Striker”).

• 1 Jul 1916: Killed in action in WWI. Lance Corporal 22/1157, 22nd* Battalion (Tyneside Scottish), Northumberland Fusiliers ‘A’ Company, died at La Boisselle, Somme, France, on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. [*Northumberland Fusiliers give 2nd Battalion, not 22nd.]

• He was reported missing in Durham Advertiser, Friday 18 Aug 1916, and officially reported dead on 26 Jan 1917. However he was still listed on the electoral roll at 20, Wylam Street, with his wife, Jennie Moses Bell, in 1919.

• No known grave.

• Remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France (Panel 10B, 11B and 12B); on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as R. Bell), and on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Robert Bell).

• He left a widow, Jennie Moses Bell, of 20, Wylam Street, and three children.

• She continued to live at 20, Wylam Street till the 1960s. Her daughter, Ada Bell, was also registered to vote there from about 1939.

• Robert Bell’s brother-in-law, Robert Lawson, who lived at 1, Walker Street, Bowburn, was also killed in action in WWI. 

– So too was his cousin, Frank Wood, who lived at 51, Ramsay Street, Tursdale.

– So too was his cousin, Joseph Hutchinson, who lived at 56, Ramsay Street, Tursdale.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; County Durham Advertiser 18/8/1916 + 26/1/1917; Durham Chronicle 29/6/1917; CWGC; John Davison (2000); electoral registers; Censuses.


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Bestford, Joseph Huntley

• Middle name, Huntley, found in registration of birth & birth certificate. It was used as only first name in CWGC record of his death. (His birth certificate has been posted on the “In memory” family tree on Ancestry [owner: robertbannister76].)

• @ 1891 & 1901 Censuses, aged 7 & 17, born Heugh Hall, living with parents, Robert & Elizabeth Bestford, etc. In 1901, described as Coal Miner Helper Up. His father was a Coal Miner (Waste Man).

• 27 Nov 1909: Married Ethel Tatham, daughter of William E. & Elizabeth Tatham, of 2, Yates Yard, Willington, Durham.

• Abt Oct 1910: Birth of son, Robert William.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 27, born Heugh Hall, Durham, living at Old Quarrington, nr Coxhoe, Durham, with his wife, Ethel (23, born Maldon, Essex, married for 1 year and having had no children), and their adopted son, Robert William Bestford (6 months, born Stockton, Durham), + a boarder, Alfred Willson [i.e. Wilson?] (single, 30, born Lancaster, Lancashire, Coal Miner Hewer). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• Abt Feb 1912: Birth of daughter, Margaret E.

• 11 Jul 1915: First “entered theatre of war”, namely France. (Source: British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

• Awarded British Medal, Victory Medal and 15 Star Medal. (ibid.)

• 4 Sep 1918: Killed in action in WWI. Joseph Bestford, Driver 72844, 72nd Brigade, Royal [Horse & Royal] Field Artillery, died in France & Flanders, aged 34 years.

• Buried in the Bac-du-Sud British Cemetery, Bailleuval, Pas de Calais, France – Plot IV, Row A, Grave 21.

• Remembered on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorial (as J. Bestford, under “Quarrington”) and on the Tursdale War Memorial (as Joseph Bestford).

• The CWGC gives his name as Huntley Bestford, but with same number, rank, address etc.

• He left a widow, Ethel Bestford, 14, Heugh Hall, Bowburn.

– She re-married, to John Keyland, in Q1 1919, at Durham, Durham, and moved to live at 2, Tates Yard, Low Willington, Durham, where she had two further children.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 20/9/1918; John Davison (2000); Censuses.


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Blackburn, Harold

• @ 1901 Census, aged 4, born Shincliffe, Durham, living at High Row, Shincliffe, Durham, with his parents (Thomas & Arabella Ann Blackburn) etc.. His father was a Fireman, Stationary Engine (described as Fireman Stoker in 1911).

• @ 1911 Census, aged 14, born Shincliffe, Durham, living at Shincliffe Bank Top, Durham, with his parents. Described as Labourer Working at Colliery, odd jobs.

• Presumed not to have married. (There was a Harold Blackburn who married at Guisborough, Yorkshire, in Q1 1917.)

• 17 Aug 1915: Enlisted in the 1st Northern Field Ambulance R.A.M.C., at the Hutton Terrace Drill Hall, Newcastle, giving his age as 19 years 2.5 months; occupation as Miner, and his address as 10, Durham Road, Bowburn. Regimental no. assigned was No. 2033. (It was later changed to 386511.)

• 17 Aug 1915–21 Jan 1916: Posted at Home.

• 22 Jan 1916–30 Oct 1918: Posted in France.

• 30 Oct 1918: Killed in action in WWI. Private 386511, 1st (Northumbrian) Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps (Territorial Force), died from influenza and gas poisoning (or bronchopneumonia, according to service record), at No. 12 Casualty Clearing Station, France, aged 22 years.

• Listed by the CWGC as the son of Thomas and the late Arabella Blackburn, of 10, Durham Road, Bowburn.

• Buried at Busigny Communal Cemetery Extension, Nord, France – Plot II, Row A, Grave 4.

• Remembered on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (now Community Centre) memorial (as Harold Blackburn) and on the Parish Church memorial (as H. Blackburn).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Dur. Co. Adv. 8/11/1918 p.4 + 15/11/1918; CWGC; Censuses.


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Blenkinsop, Richard (Dick)

• Born in Harrington, Durham, according to The Naval and Military Press Ltd. record of his death, via Ancestry. This should be “Quarrington”.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Quarrington Hill, Durham, living at St. Helens Terrace, Kelloe, Durham, with his parents, George & Margaret Blenkinsop, etc.. His father was described then as a Stoneman but in 1891 had been Innkeeper at the Cross Keys Inn, Front Street, Quarrington Hill (and before that a Coal Miner).

• @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born Quarrington Hill, Durham, living with parents, at 45, Steavenson Street, Bowburn. Described as Coal Miner, Putter.

• Enlisted at Durham. [?–Source unclear. Service records not available (via Ancestry.com). Assumed lost.]

• Friday 23 Jun 1916: Killed in Action in WWI – aged 22. Private 5632, 13th Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers, died of wounds in France & Flanders.

– (The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry, gives date as 24 June.)

• Buried at the Meaulte Military Cemetery, Somme, France – Row C, Grave 25.

• His home address was given as 45, Steavenson Street, that of his parents, George & Margaret Blenkinsop (later of 4, Pond Street, Shincliffe Colliery).

• Boxer (“Young Striker”).

• Remembered by George Swinbank (who also remembered J. McKeown) in Dur. Adv. 5 Jul 1918.

• Remembered on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as R. Blenkinsopp) and on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Richard Blenkinsop).

• His brother, William, was also Killed in Action in WWI; he died Monday 28 Aug 1916, aged 32.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; County Durham Advertiser 7/7/1916 + 22/6/1917; John Davison (2000); CWGC; Naval & Military Press; Censuses.


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Blenkinsop, William

• @ 1891 Census, aged 7, born Quarrington, Durham, living at the Cross Keys Inn, Front Street, Quarrington Hill, Durham, with his parents, George & Margaret Blenkinsop, etc.. Described as Scholar. His father was the Innkeeper but had in 1881 been described as Coal Miner and in 1901 was a Stoneman.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 16, born Quarrington Hill, Durham, living at St. Helens Terrace, Kelloe, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Hewer [sic – though he seems to have been a bit young] Coal Miner.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 26, born Quarrington Hill, Durham, boarding at 1, New Houses, Great Lumley, nr Fencehouses, Durham, in the household of William McDonald (40, born Alloa, Coal Miner Stoneman [underground]). Described as Coal Miner Hewer. Also present were WMcD’s wife, Annie (42, born York, married for 19 years and having had 4 children, all living), and four sons (William, 16 / 18, born Chester-le-Street, Durham, Coal Miner, Cageing on; Alexander, 15, born Chester-le-Street, Coal Miner, Driver; John,13, born Castletown, Durham, Scholar, and Samuel, 6, born Spennymoor, Durham), + two other boarders (Duncan McDonald [WMcD’s father?], widower, 75, born Scotland, and John Kennedy, single, 28, born Stockton, Coal Miner Hewer).

• 1914: Presumed NOT to have been the William Blenkinsop who married Eva Bell at Durham, Durham, in Q4 1914, as four children were born in Durham, Durham, between 1916 and 1923, with mother’s maiden name = Bell. (There was a William Blenkinsop who was born abt 1890 at West Hartlepool.)

• 18 Aug 1914: Enlisted in the Durham Light Infantry, at Durham. Name given as William Blenkinsop; aged 28 years and 4 months, born Quarrington Hill, near Coxhoe, Durham; not married; Miner. Distinguishing marks were noted to be two tattoos: Fire intights [?!] & girls head & clasped hands “rt.f.arm” [presumably right forearm], and “B.Bill” & Thistle & “Scotland” on l.f.arm. (Source: British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

• 16 Sep 1914: Began 8 days in Connaught Hospital, with Gonorrhea – Recovered. (ibid).

• 30 Dec 1914: Overstayed his leave pass by 9 hours (midnight till 9am), while stationed at Whitley. Punishment: 7 days F.P. No. 2. (ibid).

• 6 Jan 1915: Began 22 days in Connaught Hospital, with Gonorrhea – Recovered. (ibid).

• 6 Feb 1915: Absent from Tattoo until 10.25pm. Punishment: 3 days C. B.. (ibid).

• 6 Feb 1915: Absent from Church Parade until 8.45am. Punishment: 4 days C. B.. (ibid).

• 18 Apr 1915: Overstayed his leave pass by 23 hours (midnight till 11pm), while stationed at Aldershot. Punishment: Deprived of 3 days’ pay. (ibid).

• 13 May 1915: Made will, leaving “the whole of my property” to [his father], Thomas Blenkinsop, 45, Stephenson [sic] Street, Bowburn Coll[ier]y, Co. Durham. (Typed copy of will, certified true copy by 2nd Lieut. for Officer i/c Regular Inf[antr]y Section No. 3, on 18 Nov 1916.) (Service Records, as above.)

• 21 May 1915: In Exped. Force to France, after 276 days’ service in UK. He was to serve a further 1 year and 100 days in France. (ibid.)

• 23 Oct 1915: Appointed unpaid Lance Corporal. (ibid)

• 20 Nov 1915: Promoted Corporal. (ibid).

• 1 Jan 1916: Came home on 6 days leave (31/12/15-7/1/160). (ibid – letter from A. Dawson, dated 24 Nov 1916, + Army Form B. 104-53.).)

• 2 Feb 1916: Awarded Green Card of Honour for Gallant & Meritorious Conduct, near Ypres. (ibid – letter from A. Dawson.)

• 15 Mar 1916: Awarded Distinguished Conduct Medal (D.C.M.). It was awarded “for conspicuous gallantry on many occasions, notably when he went twice across 150 yards of open ground to visit a detached bombing post, during an intense bombardment by the enemy. His fine example of fearlessness did much to encourage the men under most trying circumstances.” (ibid and County Durham Advertiser 15/9/1916.)

– He was wounded in 1916 – date not given, but possibly in this action. (Service Records, as above.)

• Also awarded 1914-15 Star; British War Medal, and Victory Medal. (ibid)

• 14 May 1916: Appointed unpaid Lance Sergeant. (ibid)

• 1 Jun 1916: Appointed Acting Lance Sergeant. (ibid)

• 10 Jul 1916: Appointed Acting Sergeant. (ibid)

• 28 Aug 1916: Acting Sergeant William Blenkinsop 20060, 10th Battalion, D Company, Durham Light Infantry, was killed in action in WWI, in France & Flanders, aged 32. (He died on the 27th acc. to CWGC, but 28th acc. to correspondence at the time and Service Records, as above.)

• William Blenkinsopp, of 45, Steavenson Street, was the son of George & Margaret Blenkinsopp, 45, Steavenson Street (later of 4, Pond Street, Shincliffe Colliery). [This surname spelling, and both addresses, were given in correspondence from the Infantry Record Office, York, on 13 Sep 1916. – Service Records, as above.]

• No known grave.

• Remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France (Face 14A and 15C), and on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as W. Blenkinsopp) and on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as William Blenkinsop).

• A memorial service was held at St. Paul’s for William John Harrington and Wm. Blenkinsop, of Bowburn, and Jn Luke, Robt Carter & Ralph Bestford of Cassop - Dur. Adv. 10/11/16.

• His brother Richard was also killed in action.

• Two moving letters, sent to the Army on behalf of his parents, are included in the British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920, via Ancestry. They say that Willie’s (and Richard’s) father was a cripple and had not worked for 10 years. He and his wife had only 5/- “permanent” [i.e. pension?] to live on and that they had been told they had to leave their colliery house [at 45, Steavenson Street]. (They moved soon after to 4, Pond Street, Shincliffe. WB’s father wrote [or some one wrote on his behalf], on 5 Feb 1917, to inform the Army they had moved.)

– Note, though, that WB’s brother James was still or again living at 45, Steavenson Street in 1919. – See below.

– The request is mentioned in a summary sheet but it is not clear to me what action was agreed.

• 7 Jul 1917: His brother Thomas wrote from 4, Pond Street, Shincliffe Colliery, saying that he had been informed on 12 May 1917 that WB’s D.C.M. would be forwarded to him (TM) and asking that this be done as soon as possible. A separate Army record said that the medal was duly sent on 12 Jul 1917. It was received and signed for by TM on 14 July. (Service Records, as above.)

• 12 Aug 1919: Army Form 5080 (Statement of names and addresses of relatives of deceased soldier), signed by T.? Grove Ouseley, Rector of Shincliffe, gave relatives as: [no widow]; [no father]; mother: Margaret Blenkinsopp (68), 4, Pond Street, Shincliffe Colliery; full brothers: John (48), Hallgarth House, Fence Houses [Fencehouses]; Thomas (46), 4, Pond Street; George (31), Gill Crescent, Fence Houses, and James (25), 45, Stevenson [sic] Street, Bowburn; [no half-brothers]; full sisters: Annie Cummings (45), Low flats, Chester-le-Street, and Mary Jane Anderson (37), Neville House?, Langley Bridge?. (Service Records, as above.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; Durham County Advertiser; John Davison (2000); Censuses.


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Brunskill, Thomas

• @ 1891 Census, aged 1, born Middleton One Row, Durham, living at Shincliffe Colliery, Durham, with his parents, Thomas & Mary Isabel, etc.. His father was a Police Constable.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 11, born Middleton One Row, Durham, living at Bowburn, Cassop-cum-Quarrington, Durham, with his parents etc..

– They were presumably living at The Leazes, probably in the house later occupied by Mary Isabel’s half-brother, William Jackson.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 21, born Middleton St. George, boarding at County House, Darlington. Described as Police Constable. Also there were ten other police constables, including his brother William (24, born Middleton St. George), and four prisoners.

– Next door, at the Police Station, was the household of the Sergeant of Police, William Whalen, comprising WW, his wife, seven children and a servant. Next door on the other side, with address also given as County House, was the household of the Superintendent of Police, Henry Dryden, comprising HD, his wife and two children.

• The marriage of a Thomas Brunskill to Ethel Chadwick was registered at Darlington in Q2 1916. However I have no grounds for believing this was the same TB. He is recorded as having had a girlfriend, Beatie. (See below.)

• 4 Dec 1917: Killed in action in WWI. Acting Lance Corporal Thomas Brunskill P/1631, Foot Branch, Military Police Corps, of Coxhoe, Durham, was killed whilst regulating traffic at Asylum Corner, near Ypres, Belgium, aged 28 years. Son of Thomas and Mary Isobel [sic] Brunskill, of 13, Durham Road, Bowburn.

• Buried at Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium – Plot XII, Row A, Grave 5.

• Remembered in St. Paul’s churchyard (Monument 159), Quarrington Hill; on Parish Church memorial (as T. Brunskill), and on Miners’s Welfare memorial, Bowburn, as Thomas Brunskill).

• Brothers = Bob, Will and (in France) Jack. Girl friend = Beatie.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; County Durham Advertiser 14/12/1917 + 6/12/1918; CWGC; John Davison; CA McLee [Cleveland, N. Yks & S. Durham Family History Society] (1991): Monumental Inscriptions, Quarrington; Censuses.


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Carlin, Christopher Walker (aka Kit, also Christie)

• Also known as Kit, and also Christie.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born Monk Heseldon, living at Pond Street, Shincliffe, with his parents, Christopher Walker & Mary Carlin, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 18, born Castle Eden, living at 28, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, with his parents etc. Described as Miner, Putter.

• 31 Jul 1915: Killed in action in WWI. Lance Corporal Christopher Walker Carlin 16226, 10th Bn. Durham Light Infantry, was killed in France, aged 23 years.

• 200 men had by then volunteered from Cassop-cum-Quarrington; he was the first of these “Kitchener volunteers” (according to John Davison) to be killed. (The only previous casualty, Pte. Edward Cooper [né Lowes], was a regular soldier.)

• He was recorded as the son of Mr. Christopher Walker (sen.) & Mrs. Mary Carling [sic], of Crowtrees Cottage, Bowburn.

• His name was recorded by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission as Carling. However his family’s “In Memoriam”, in the Durham Advertiser the following year (28 Jul 1916), called him Carlin – as did various Census records and later family usage in the village.

• He had no known grave.

• Commemorated on Panels 36 and 38, Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium, Panel 36 and 38; in St. Paul’s churchyard; Quarrington Hill (Monument 201), and on the memorial plaques of Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church (as C. Carling [sic]) and the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Christopher Carling [sic] Jr).

• A memorial service at St. Paul’s was packed (c. 200), inc. members of the [Crowtrees] Workmen’s Club, Bowburn. It was addressed by Rev. A. J. Gadd and A. Calvert was organist. (Co. Dur. Adv. 27 Aug 1915.)

• CWC’s nephew, also called Christopher Walker Carlin, son of his brother William, was killed in 1944, in WWII.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (1900); CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 27/8/15 + 28/7/1916 + 2/8/1918; CA McLee [Cleveland, N. Yks & S. Durham Family History Society] (1991): Monumental Inscriptions, Quarrington; Censuses.


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Cooper (né Lowes), Edward

• Abt Nov 1882: Guessed to be the Edward Lowes whose birth was registered at Rothbury, Northumberland, in Q4 1882.

• His parents, Andrew & Elizabeth Lowes, had in 1881 been living, with their two daughters, at Wapping Square, Longbenton.

• His father, a Coal Miner, died in Q3 1885.

• His mother re-married in about 1887 to John Cooper, who was also a Coal Miner (Hewer).

• @ 1891 Census, name given as Edward Cooper, aged 8, born Killingworth, Scholar, living at 3, Mill Yard Cottages, Westoe, Durham, with his mother & step-father, John Cooper, etc.

• @ 1901 Census, name given as Edward Lowes, unmarried, aged 19, born Benton Square [Killingworth], Northumberland, boarding at Welbeck Terrace, Pegswood, Northumberland, in the household of John Elliott (50, born Burnopfield, Durham, Collier, Stoneman). Described as Coal Miner, Putter & Hewer.

– Also present were JE’s wife, Annie (47, born Blaydon, Durham) and his married son, Joseph, 23, Colliery Stoneman) & his wife, Mary (19), + five unmarried children (John William, 18, James, 18, Thomas, 7, Jane A., 15, and Isabella, 9), + one other boarder, Robert Scott (married, but wife not present, 47, born Scremerston, Northumberland, Colliery Stoneman).

• 1904: Edward Cooper enlisted as a regular soldier. (Source: John Davison (quoting source: Co. Dur. Adv. 26 Aug 1915).

• @ 1911 Census, name given as Edward Cooper, unmarried, aged 29, born Benton Square, Northumberland, Private in 21 Northumberland Fusiliers, at the “Military Establishment” (“Barracks or Quarters”) at Fleetwood, Fylde [Blackpool], Lancashire. Occupation given as Coal Miner.

– All those present had their rank listed in one column and their “trade of occupation (if any)” listed in another. There were 46 in the 2 Northumberland Fusiliers and 78 no. others in other regiments (the 3 Bn & 2 BnSouth Lancs. Regiment and the 3 Bn & 4 Manchester Regiments, and 4 no. Royal Engineers and 4 no. in the Army Ordnance Corps) plus civilians.

• Possibly part of Field Marshall French’s British Expeditionary Force, which was prepared after Britain declared war on Germany on 4 Aug 1914 and landed in Belgium shortly thereafter, engaging in the 1st Battle of Mons (23 Aug - 5 Sep 1914).

• 20 Oct 1914: Killed in action in WWI.

– He was listed as Edward Cooper [sic] and was “the first soldier from Bowburn to be killed” (Davison).

– Private Edward Cooper 442, 1st Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, was killed in Herlies (3 miles north of La Bassée), France, aged 32 years.

• No known grave.

• Commemorated, as Edward Cooper, on Le Touret Memorial, Pas de Calais, France, Panel 5 and 6, and on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorial (as E. Cooper).

• The CWGC lists him as the son of Mrs. Jane Cooper, of 20, Steavenson St., Bowburn, Coxhoe, Co. Durham, and gives that as his home address.

– In the 1911 Census, she was living at 20, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, Durham, with her husband, John Cooper (to whom she had been married for 24 years and with whom she had had 8 children, 2 of whom had died), and six unmarried children, including her eldest son by her first marriage (Edward’s brother), Thomas Lowes (27, born Benton, Northumberland, described as [employed in the colliery] Lamp Cabin above ground).

– She was still living there in 1930. Though her husband is believed to have died before then, two of her adult children were still living there, and at least one grandchild (Maggie Bird).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 26/10/1917; CWGC; Censuses.


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Davies, Horace

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Normanton, Yorkshire, living in Crofton Avenue, Crofton, Wakefield, Yorkshire, with his parents, Eli & Grace Davies, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born Normanton, Yorkshire, living in Long Row, Coxhoe, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Putter in Coal Mine.

• 13 Aug 1914: Enlisted in Army. (Service records not found on Ancestry. Presumed lost.)

• 19 Aug 1915: Private 14732 Horace Davies, 8th Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, son of Eli & Grace Davies, of 77, Long Row, Coxhoe, died in WWI. He was killed in action at Sulva Bay, Gallipoli, aged 22. (CWGC gives age as 20. Durham Advertiser gave it as 22.)

• Remembered on the Helles Memorial, Turkey, Panel 33 to 35; on the Coxhoe war memorial (as H. Davies), and also (as Horace Davies) on a new plaque dedicated at a ceremony in Bowburn Community Centre on 28 Oct 2001. (The new plaque had the names of four men who had not been on either the parish church memorial or the one in the community centre [previously the miners’ welfare hall]. The other three men were William Foster, Walter Salisbury and Frederick Stephenson.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Censuses.


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Foster, William

• @ 1891 Census, aged 3, born Sunderland [Bridge], Durham, living at Green Lane Villas, Harton, North Shields, Durham, with his parents, George Scott & Margaret Ann Foster, etc. His father was a House Builder’s Foreman. (He was later an innkeeper.)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 13, born Croxdale, Durham, living at 25, Booth Street, Heworth, Felling, Durham, with his parents (q.v.) etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 23, born Croxdale, Durham, living at 3, Gretna Terrace, Felling, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Pit Sinker.

• Q1 1914: Presumed to be the William Foster who married Elizabeth Hutchinson, at Durham.

• Enlisted at Felling. (Source: Record of death from British and Irish Military Databases; The Naval and Military Press Ltd, via Ancestry – date not given. Ancestry does not have WF’s enlistment papers or other service records themselves.)

• 22 Aug 1915: Corporal* William Foster, 11043, 6th Bn., Alexandra, Princess of Wales’ Own (Yorkshire) Regiment, died in WWI. He was killed in Gallipoli, aged 27 years.

– *CWGC gives rank as Corporal. Record of death from British and Irish Military Databases gives it as Private.

• His parents, George Scott Foster & Margaret Foster, lived at Bowburn. (Source: CWGC.) This was at the Hare & Greyhound. (Source: Electoral Register.)

• His widow, Elizabeth Foster, lived at 68, Attwood Terrace, Tudhoe Colliery, Spennymoor. (Source: CWGC.)

• Remembered on the Helles Memorial, Turkey, Panel 55 to 58, and also (as William Foster) on a supplementary plaque placed beside the memorial in Bowburn Community Centre on 28 Oct 2001. (The new plaque had the names of four men who had not been on either the parish church memorial or the one in the community centre [previously the miners’ welfare hall]. The other three men were Horace Davies, Walter Salisbury and Frederick Stephenson.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Gilligan, John

• @ 1891 Census, aged 7, born Redcar, Yorkshire, living at 10, Cleveland Street, Coatham, Yorkshire, with his parents, John & Mary Gilligan, etc. His father was a Mariner.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 17, born Redcar, Yorkshire, living at 32, France Street, Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, with his parents etc.. Described as Steam Tug Deckhand.

• His marriage to Eleanor Buxton was registered at Darlington, Durham, in Q2 1909. (Her maiden name is confirmed by the birth registrations of their sons John & William, in 1912 & 1913.)

• @ 1911 Census, aged 27, born Redcar, Yorkshire, living at 41, Scott Street, Redcar, with his wife, Eleanor (30, born Guisborough, married for 1 year and having had 1 child, still living), and their daughter, Muriel [spelt Murial] (under 10 months, born Redcar). Described as Taclman [i.e. Tackleman?] in Ironworks; Seaman in Royal Naval Reserve (working as Sailor gang ¿us10?).

• 1912: Came to Bowburn, where he lived at 10, Clarence Street. He was a pumpman at Bowburn Colliery. (Year given by John Davison. It must have been early in the year, as the birth of his son John was registered at Durham in Q1 1912.

• @ 1914: Registered to vote at Bowburn [presumably 10, Clarence Street].

• JG was in the Royal Naval Reserve before 1911 Census but (according to John Davison) he enlisted – presumably into full service – in 1914, and served on HMS Euryalus in landings in Dardinelles. (JD refers to a letter in the Durham County Advertiser 18 Jun 1915, when he was a Leading Seaman.)

• 28 Feb 1918: Killed in action in WWI. John Gilligan, Petty Officer 3124/B, H.M. Motor Lighter X 138, Royal Naval Reserve, was drowned in the North Sea when his ship was lost in gales, aged 35 years. Address given as 10, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• Buried in Old Churchyard, Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, UK Grave Reference/Plot E, Row 27, Grave 541.

• Remembered on memorial plaques at Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church (as J. Gillighan [sic]) and in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as John Gilligan).

• He left a widow, Eleanor, and three children. They were still at 10, Clarence Street, Bowburn, in 1918, when his widow, Eleanor, was registered to vote there, on her own.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 22/3/1918; CWGC; Censuses.


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Glazer [aka Glazier], James

• Parents unknown and date & place of birth uncertain.


• When JG enlisted in the DLI, his next of kin was recorded as Blanche Glazier, his “father” [but presumably mother], of 46, Brittania Street, XXX [unreadable]. (This was crossed out, presumably after his marriage, and the next of kin was changed to Mary J. Glazier, [“wife”?–unreadable, possibly “widow”], of 12, Stevenson [sic] Street, Bowburn, Coxhoe.) There is a Brittania Street in London, near Kings Cross.

– On a later War Office form, listing the deceased living relatives, his parents and siblings are listed as “Unknown”. (The form was signed by Dr. A. H. Watson, of XXX [unreadable] House, Bowburn.)

• When JG married, in 1918, his father was given as John Glazier, Cartman.


• The Ancestry index to the British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920 says that the enlistment record for James Glazier was in 1914 and that his age at enlistment was 21. This would make his date of birth about 1893.

– However the record is hard to read and is more likely to be dated 29 Mar 1917. Moreover it gives full age as 21 years and 11 months, which would make his date of birth about Apr 1895.

– An Army record dated 27 Mar 1917 gave his age as 23 years 2 months, which would make his date of birth about Jan 1894.


• Guessed to be the James Glazer [sic] whose birth was registered in Q1 1894 at St. Saviour Southwark, London.

– [The only other possible candidate seems to be the James Arthur Glazier who was living with his parents at Birmingham in 1901 (his father was a Sewer Foreman) and in the household of Ernest Lewis Ensor (Master Butcher), at Atherstone, Warwickshire, in 1911 – himself described as Butcher. He was born abt 1893 at Beeston, Nottinghamshire.]


• @ 1901 Census, James Glazer [sic], aged 6, [no birthplace given], was a Workhouse child living at the Central London District Schools’ Poor Law School for Pauper Children at Hanwell, Middlesex. He was one of several hundred such “Workhouse children”; their names filled nearly 40 of the 45 pages, at 25no. per page, of the School Census record (the rest being staff).

• @ 1911 Census, James Glazer [sic], aged 15, born London, was a servant in the household of John Brass (54, born Warcop, Westmorland, Farming), at Barrow Moor, Appleby. Described as Farm Servant. Also in the household were JB’s wife, Elizabeth (54, born Penrith), and two children, both born Appleby, (Annie, 24, and Walter, 16), + another farm servant, Martha Lightburne (19, born Kirkby Thorpe?, Westmorland).


• 10 Dec 1915: Enlisted, in Durham, in the 5th (Reserves) Durham Light Infantry, with regimental no. 205096. (He was later transferred to the York & Lancaster Regiment and allocated no. 235533.) His name given was as James Glazier, aged 21 years 11 months, living at East Grange Farm, Shincliffe, described as Farm Servant. Religion: Church of England.

• 29 Mar 1917: Mobilised and posted to 5 DLI the next day.

• 3 Jul 1917–10 Nov 1917: Posted to France.

• 3 Jul 1917: Embarked at Folkestone for Boulogne, thence to Étaples.

• 19 Jul 1917: Transferred to new regiment, & York & Lancs, and posted to 8th Bn. with new regimental no.: 235533.

• 10 Nov 1917–17 [or 18?] Jun 1918: Posted Home.

• 23 Jan 1918: Instructed to report (at Sheffield?)

• 2 Jun 1918: Married Mary Jane Wright at St. Paul’s Church, Quarrington. The marriage certificate (q.v.) gives names as James Glazier (aged 24, Bachelor, Soldier, resident of Bowburn, son of John Glazier, Cartman) and Mary Jane Wright (aged 27, Spinster, [no occupation], resident of Bowburn, daughter of William Wright, Miner). They were married by Licence at St. Paul’s Church, in the Parish of Cassop-cum-Quarrington, by Rev. Thomas Wardle. The witnesses were John Corbett and Beatrice Gales [the bride’s half-sister].

– Mary Jane already had two children, Freda Wright (born 30 Jun 1912) and Robert Wright (born 21? July 1915). John & Mary Jane’s daughter, Martha Glazier, was probably born on 2 Oct 1918. [See notes about the children in notes about their mother.]

• 19 Jun 1918: Posted to France.

• 1 Oct 1918: Private 235533 J. Glazier [sic], 6th Bn. [Service Bn.] York and Lancaster Regiment, was killed in action in France. His age is not given by the CWGC but he will have been aged 24.

• Buried in the Sucrerie Cemetery, Epinoy, Pas de Calais, France (Row B, Grave 18).

• Remembered on the St. Paul’s Church War Memorial (as J. Glazier).

• The birth of his daughter, Martha Glazier, was registered at Durham, Durham, in Q4 1918.

• @ 24 February 1919 and again 2 Dec 1919: War Office forms about the deceased’s personal effects [there were none], and then commemorative plaque and scroll, said they should be despatched to Mrs. Mary J. Glazier, 12, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, Coxhoe, Durham.

– In the 1911 Census, 12, Steavenson Street had been the address of Nathan Parkin’s family.

• His widow was awarded an Army Pension of £1 9s. 7d., for herself and three children, with effect from 21 Apr 1919.

• At least one other child was born in County Durham in the early 1920s, whose mother looks like being MJW’s and whose surname is given as Glazier – despite JG having died in 1918. These are GUESSED to have been her children, but by [an]other father[s]. See notes entered under Mary Jane’s name.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC; Censuses; John Davison (2000); pers. com. from Cheryl Wootton, descendent of JG.


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Griffiths, John Thomas

• @ 1891 Census, aged 8 months, born ¿Coxo? House, Durham, living in Wharton Street, Coundon, Durham, with his parents. Robert (Bob) & Phoebe Hannah Griffiths, etc.. His father was described then as a Waggon Way Man but in 1901 as Coal Miner, Hewer. He was later Bowburn miners’ first Checkweighman – his occupational description in 1911.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 11, birthplace N.K. [not known], a patient in Deans Fever Hospital, South Shields, Durham, together with his brother Robert, 9, and sister Sarah, 6, (all with birthplace N.K. [not known], and 35 other patients, all children.

– Their parents were living at 48, Byron Street, Westoe, South Shields.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 21, born Easington Lane, Durham, living with his parents (q.v.) at Durham Road [West], Bowburn, Durham. Described as Coal Miner (Hewer).

• 8 Apr 1912: Married Beatrice (Beattie) Clark, at Cornforth, Durham. (Registered at Sedgefield, Durham.)


• The Army records of Pte John Thomas Griffiths, on Ancestry, are on pages 21,882–21,898 (out of 44,122) of the “Gri” pages of British Army WWI Pension Records 1914-1920.


• 8 Feb 1915: Enlisted at Coxhoe. Age at enlistment = 24 years 5 months. Religion given as Wesleyan. [I think his first service no. was 18237, later changed to 369514.]

• 8 Feb 1915–19 Jul 1915: Served at Home.

• 20 Jul 1915–24 Jul 1916: Served in France.

• 25 Jul 1916–25 Jan 1917: Served at Home.

• 26 Jan 1917–7 Jun 1918: Served in France. (Embarked at Folkestone and disembarked at Boulogne on 26 Jan 1917. Posted to Etaples 27 Jan 1917.)

• 15 Sep 1917: Transferred to Labour Corps and posted to 283rd (Area) Employment Company, Labour Corps.

• 2 Mar 1918: Injured at Etaples. (See medical record.)

• 7 Jun 1918: Returned to England per A. T. “St. Andrew” “D. A. H.”, from Boulogne.

• 8 Jun 1918–2 Aug 1918: Served at Home. (Total service: 3 years, 176 days.)

• 2 Aug 1918: Pte John Thomas Griffiths 369514, Labour Corps, Eastern C. L. C., was discharged, at Nottingham, aged 27 years 10 months, “being no longer physically fit for War Service. Para 393 (XVI) KR”. His address was given as 4, Wylam Street, Bowburn Colliery, and he was described as “Honest, Sober & Hardworking. Disability affected by A. S. [active service]”

– His disabilities were listed at “D. A. H. [disordered action of the heart] from Myocarditis aggr[avate]d by A. S.”.


• @ 1918: Registered to vote, as absent voter, at 4, Wylam Street, with his wife, Beatrice. His brother Ellis R. was also registered there as an absent voter.

• Wed 28 Aug 1918: Died from war wounds received in a shell blast in WWI – aged 27, Private in the Labour Company, King’s Own Scottish Borders. He had been discharged deaf, dumb & blind and later died of cardiac arrest, at County Hospital, Durham. His brother-in-law, Charles Clark, registered his death.

• He was buried in St. Mary’s Churchyard, Coxhoe. (No headstone survives.)

• Remembered on the memorial plaques in Cassop-cum-Quarrington Church (as J. T. Griffiths), Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as John Thomas Griffiths) and the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe.

• Sources: Joseph Griffiths (his brother), 39, David Terrace; Death Certificate; Ministry of Defence (via SAAFA); Ancestry.com; County Durham Advertiser 6/9/1918; John Davison (2000); Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Hall, James Henry

• @ 1901 Census, aged 8, born Waldridge Fell, Durham, living at 256, Seventh Street, Witton Gilbert, with his parents, George & Jane Hall, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 18, born Waldridge Fell, Durham, living at Clarence Villa, Coxhoe, with his parents etc.. Described as Miner Putter.

• 9 Apr 1917: Private James Henry Hall 25/260, Northumberland Fusiliers, 25th Battalion (Tyneside Irish), born Chester-le-street, Durham, was killed in action in France & Flanders, aged 24.

• Buried in the Roclincourt Valley Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France, in plot 2, row B, grave 6. (Roclincourt was just within the Allied lines before the Battle of Arras in 1917 and it was from here that the 51st (Highland) and 34th Divisions advanced on 9 April 1917.)

• Remembered on the Tursdale War Memorial (as James H. Hall).

• Sources: CWGC; Ancestry.com; local memorials; JHH’s nephew, Brian Hall (’phone, 21 Sep 2014); Censuses.

• Note that there was also a John Pearson Herbert Hall, of Steavenson Street, Bowburn, who was killed in action on 1 Nov 1918. The name “J. Hall” which is on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington church memorial is probably that JPHH, rather than this James Henry Hall.


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Hall, John Pearson Herbert

• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born Stockton, Durham, living at 34, Trent Street, Stockton, Durham, with his parents, John Pearson & Agnes Hall, and sister. His father was an Engine Fitter.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 19, born Stockton, Durham, living at 63, Grange Road, East Middlesbrough, with his widowed mother, sister and two boarders. Described as Engineer’s Pattern Maker.

• His mother, Mrs. Hall, was living in Steavenson Street, Bowburn, when she learned of her son’s death. (Source: Durham County Advertiser, 22 Nov 1918.)

– He also lived there, in Steavenson Street, till he married, in Jan 1918. (Source: John Davison.)

• Married Eliza G. Bailey in Jan 1918. (Registered at Middlesbrough in Q1 1918).

• 1 Nov 1918: Killed in action in WWI. 2nd Lieutenant J. P. H. Hall, 19th Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, died in Belgium, aged 27. “Lieutenant Hall, who was married in January, was killed by a bomb dropped on a house in which he was messing.”–Dur. Adv.

• Buried in the Vichte Military Cemetery, Anzegem, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium, Plot II, Row D, Grave 5.

• “J. Hall” is remembered on the parish church memorial (Bowburn) and it is presumed that this is John Pearson Herbert Hall.

• Sources: John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 8/11/1918 & 22/11/1918 p.4; CWGC; local memorials; Ancestry.com; Censuses.


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Hall, William

• @ 1891 Census, aged 2 months, born Gateshead, living with his parents, Thomas Henry Hall & Annie Maria Hall, and four siblings, at 59, Devonshire Terrace, Gateshead. His father was a Gas Stoker, N.E.R..

• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born Gateshead, Durham, living in the household of his brother Joseph, at 48, Cromwell Street, Gateshead. Also present were his widowed mother, his brother Thomas, and a boarder.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 20, born Gateshead, Durham, living in household of his brother-in-law, William Edward Hadall, at 1, Walker Street, Bowburn. Described as Putter (Coal Miner).

• Married Janet Freeman, daughter of Bob & Mary Jane Freeman, of 5, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, in Q4 1911 and lived in Walker Street – probably with his sister and brother-in-law. (The marriage was registered at Durham.)

• William & Janet Hall appear to have had three children, whose births were registered at Durham in Q3 1912, Q3 1913 and Q3 1914, though her niece, Irene Milburn, only knew of the two boys, Bill and Jim.

• 9 Aug 1915: Private William Hall 13499, 6th Bn., East Yorkshire Regiment, was killed in Gallipoli, Turkey. [No age or relatives given in CWGC record. He was, however, aged 24.]

• He had no known grave.

• Commemorated on Helles Memorial, Turkey – Panel 51 to 54 – and on the memorial plaques in Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church (as W. Hall) and in the Miners’ Institute (as William Hall).

• WH was in same regiment as David Kellie and Thomas Allison – all killed on same day.

• The Durham County Advertiser 17 Sep 1915, said that Mrs. Hall of Wylam Street, Bowburn, had received information about her husband Private Hall, who had been missing since 9th August. (He was not finally listed as dead till Dur. Adv. 11/8/1916, a year later.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; County Durham Advertiser 17/9/1915 + 11/8/1916; CWGC; John Davison (2000); WH’s niece, Irene Milburn (’phone, 31 Dec 2010); Censuses.


• Note that the Findmypast website record of WH’s death gives his birthplace as “Petershead, Co. Durham”. No such place has been identified – though there is a Peterhead in Scotland, and Peter Hill, Peter Holm, Peter’s Hush, Peter’s Lane and Peters Bank are all listed in the DCRO’s “Durham Places in the mid-nineteenth century”. I guess that “Petershead” was a transcription error for “Gateshead”.


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Harrington, William John

• @ 1901 Census, aged 6, born City of Durham, living at 152, Clara Street, Benwell, Northumberland, with his parents, James & Isabella Harrington, etc.. His father was at that time described as Shell Weighman (Ordnance Works). However in 1893 he had been described as a Painter – and the son of a Painter – on his wedding certificate, and later, in 1911, he was described as Shifter, Coal Mine. There is a theory that his father may have painted an original (but perhaps not very good) portrait of Nurse Edith Cavell, on a home-made Bowburn Miners’ Lodge banner.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 16, born Durham City, living at 19, Clarence Street, Bowburn, with parents etc.. Described as Hanger on endless rope (below ground).

• A member of Coxhoe Rifle Club.

• 17 Aug 1914: Enlisted for 3 years (or till the termination of the War) in the DLI at Durham. (Name given as William Harrington, miner, of St. Margaret’s, Durham, aged 20. Height 5' 3.5", weight 126 lbs, chest 35", fresh complexion, brown hair, blue eyes, Methodist.

• Served in Expeditionary Force, in France, 21 May 1915 – 6 Aug 1915.

– 31 Jul 1915: Injured “In the Field”. [unreadable] at ¿Abilele? The injury was probably a shrapnel injury to his cheek, according to another page in his service record (code H632).

– 2 Aug 1915: [unreadable] at Étaples

– 6 Aug 1915: Departed for England (Newcastle).

• Home 7 Aug 1915 – 11 Oct 1915.

– 30 Sep 1915: Posted to South Shields. Departed from there 11 Oct 1915.

• Served in Expeditionary Force, in France, 12 Oct 1915 – 16 Sep 1916.

– 12 Oct 1915: Posted to [arrived in] France.

– 23 Oct 1915: Joined Battalion. The same day, he completed his will: “In the event of my death I leave the whole of my property and effects to Mrs. I. [transcribed in service record as ‘T.’] Harrington, 19, Clarence Street, Bowburn, nr Coxhoe, C/o [sic] Durham.”

• [various other entries in service record, not easily readable…]

• He wrote several letters home from the front, some published in the Durham Advertiser.

• There are no entries at all (of offences or punishment) on his Company Conduct Sheet.

• Served in the 8th Battalion, the 9th Battalion and, finally, the 10th Battalion, The Durham Light Infantry.

• 28 Aug 1916: Appointed Lance Corporal.

• 16 Sep 1916: Killed in Action in WWI, “in the field”, in France. William John Harrington, Lance Corporal 20395, 10th Bn. Durham Light Infantry, died on the Somme, attacking “Gird Trench”, France, aged 22 years. He was the son of James & Isabella M. Harrington, 19, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• No known grave.

• Remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France – Pier and Face 14A and 15C – and both on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as William Harrington) and, presumably, on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorials (as W. J. Harrington).

• 10 Nov 1916: A service was held at St. Paul’s Church for WJH and Wm. Blenkinsop (and Jn Luke, Robt Carter & Ralph Bestford of Cassop) - Dur. Adv.

• The Durham Record Office has a number of items relating to WJH, including a card in memory of Lance-Corporal William Harrington, printed by G. Bailes, Durham, which includes a photograph of him (Ref No. D/DLI 7/293/1); a scroll in memory of Corporal William Harrington of The Durham Light Infantry, n.d., [c. 1919] (Ref No. D/DLI 7/293/2); a letter from the Record Office, York, to Mrs. I. M. Harrington [his mother]*, Coxhoe, accompanying the British War Medal of Lance-Corporal W. Harrington, 17 December 1920 (Ref No.D/DLI 7/293/3), and a certificate issued in his memory, n.d., [post 1926 – when his mother died – as it refers to “son of James and the late Isabell M. Harrington”] (Ref No. D/DLI 7/293/4).

– [*His mother, Mrs. I. M. Harrington, not his father, was given as next of kin on more than one service record, though his father was given on one of them. That was crossed out and replaced by his mother’s name on a different version of the same form. His father does not, however, appear to have died till 1939. His mother died in 1926.]

• 24 Dec [presumably 1916 or 1917]: Isabella M. Harrington [his mother], of 19, Clarence Street, Bowburn, signed for receipt of the British War Medal of Pte. W. Harrington.

• 1920 [no exact date]: His mother signed for receipt of [an unspecified award] “granted in respect of the service of No. 20395 Pte. W. Harrington”. Possibly the 1914-15 Star which was sent 4 May 1920, according to a separate record.

• 26 Jun 1921: She signed for receipt of his [posthumus] Victory Medal.

• WJH’s medals are in the DLI Museum, Durham.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Durham Records Office (DRO); County Durham Advertiser 25/6/1915 + 27/8/1915 + 13/8/1915 + 29/9/1916 + 20/10/1916 + 14/9/1917 + 20/9/1918; Durham Chronicle 27/8/1915; DRO Ref No. D/DLI 7/293/1; Ancestry.com; Censuses.


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Hunter, John (Jackie)

• Born at Sherburn Hill; worked at Sherburn House Colliery.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 8, born Littletown, Durham, living at Littletown, Durham, with his parents, Richard & Angelina Hunter, etc. His father was described as Coal Miner Stone Work, but by 1911 was the Checkweighman, presumably at Sherburn Hill Colliery.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 18, born Littletown, Durham, living at Littletown, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner [Hand Putting].

• Abt Feb 1915: Married Mary Elizabeth Thornton, daughter of William Robert & Annie Thornton, of 23, Clarence Street, Bowburn. Registered at Durham, Durham.

• Saturday 1 Jul 1916: Killed in Action in WWI. John (Jackie) Hunter, of 23, Clarence Street, Bowburn, Private 26/985, 26th (Tyneside Irish) Bn., Northumberland Fusiliers ‘C’ Company, killed at La Boisselle, Somme, France, aged 23 years. Pte. Hunter was killed dragging CQMS Wild into a shell hole.

• His parents, Richard & Angelina Hunter, were then living at 8, North Street, Sherburn Hill. His widow, Mary Elizabeth Hunter (née Thornton), lived at 23, Clarence Street, with her parents. Contemporary reports said that JH also had a sister, father, mother-in-law and brother-in-law at time of death (i.e., presumably, no mother or brothers).

• No known grave. Commemorated on Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France – Pier and Face 10B, 11B and 12B. Also on the Sherburn Hill war memorial and on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington church memorial (as J. Hunter).

• His widow re-married in Q1 1919, to Alfred James B. Wilkinson, formerly of Dawdon Colliery. They lived at 23, Clarence Street, with her parents, and remained there till the 1950s.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; County Durham Advertiser 11/8/1916 + 13/7/1917 + 5/7/198; Durham Chronicle 29/6/1917; John Davison (2000); Censuses.


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Johnson, John Joseph

• Birthplace given as Durham in 1891 Census, as Scotland in 1901 and as Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1911 and in Army service record. No John Joseph Johnson birth registration found in Durham at relevant period – perhaps his mother had returned to Scotland at time of his birth. (Ancestry does not give Scottish birth registrations.)

• His date of birth, deduced from his age (31 years and 7 months) at enlistment in the DLI on 8 Dec 1915 (see below), was abt May 1884. However he died on 30 May 1918, when that would make him about 33. But both the CWGC and the British and Irish Military Databases give his age at death as 31 (i.e. born about 1887). Ages at successive Censuses are inconsistent.


• @ 1891 Census, aged 6, born Durham [City], Durham [sic], living at 70, Crossgate Yard, Crossgate, Durham, which was a lodging house, with his parents, Joseph & Mary Johnson, etc.. His father, who died before the following Census, was a Coal Miner. His mother was the Lodging House Keeper.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 15, born Scotland, living at 44, New Elvet, Durham, with his widowed mother (q.v.) and two boarders. Described as Coal Pony Driver below ground. Also at 44, New Elvet, which housed a number of households, was that of his parents-in-law-to-be, including his future wife, Jane Ann Hopper (q.v.)..

• Oct 1907: Married Jane Ann Hopper, at Penshaw Chapel, Durham. (Source: JJJ’s Army Service Records, via Ancestry. These are source of much other information below.)

• 29 Jan 1908: Birth of daughter Elizabeth.

• 11 Jun 1912: Birth of daughter Emily.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 23, born Edinburgh, Scotland, living at 56, New Elvet, Durham, with his wife, Jane Ann (24, born St. Oswalds, Durham, married for 3.5 years and having had 2 children, 1 dead), and their daughter, Elizabeth (3, born St. Oswalds, Durham), + his brother-in-law, Thomas Hopper (unmarried, 20, born St. Oswalds, Durham, Bookbinder, working for Printers, Bookbinders & Stationers). Described as General Labourer [employer not given].

• Worked at Bowburn Colliery.

• 8 Dec 1915: Enlisted in the 4th DLI at Durham, for the duration of the War. His age was given as 31 years and 7 months (making date of birth abt May 1884 – but see above). Place of Birth: Edinburgh. Occupation = Miner, Labourer. Religion: Church of England. Address was given as 5, Oswald Court, Church Street, Durham (but later amended to 64a*, Hallgarth Street, Durham). At that time he had two children, Elizabeth (born 29 Jan 1908, at Durham) and Emily (born 11 Jun 1911, at Sacriston).

– *His address was given as 649, Hallgarth Street, in a later Army document, in error.

• He was medically examined at Tursdale, two months later, when his age was given as 31 years 9 months. Height 5ft 4ins, weight 128 lbs. [etc.]

• 9 Dec 1915: Allocated to Army Reserve B.

• Abt May 1916: Birth of son John William.

• 19 May 1917: Mobilised

• 20 May 1917: Posted, via Seaham Harbour.

• 14 or 4 Sep 1917: Transferred from DLI to Labour Corps and 19 Oct 1917: Posted to 62 Lab. Co., with new service no. 426798. (It was previously 40525, in the Durham Light Infantry. )

• 30 May 1918: John Joseph Johnson, Private 426798, 841st Area Employment Coy., Labour Corps, was killed at about 1am, in France, by a bomb dropped from an enemy aircraft. He was attached to 5 Field Survey Co.. He was aged 31 years, according to CWGC but may have been aged bat 34. (See above).

• Pte. Johnson was the personal servant of Lieut. Geddes, who was “deeply grieved at his death” and wrote a letter of condolence to his widow.

• His widow, Jane Ann [sic] Johnson, lived at 7, Oswald Court, Church Street, Durham City. (CWGC.)

– That address is also given in the receipt she signed for her husband’s British War & Victory Medals, on 24 Jan [1919? – no year given].

– The same address was given on 14 Jun 1919, when she signed declaration listing JJJ’s relatives. These (in a document that is partially damaged, therefore omitting Jane’s own name as wife) are given as three children (Elizabeth, born 29 XX 190X; Emily, born 19 XX 1912, and John William, born 3rd or 23rd XX 1916) and five half-sisters. (No parents; both presumably dead. Nor any full sisters or full or half brothers.) The half-sisters were given as Susan Little (44, of 3, South View, Fatfield, Durham); Elizabeth Maddison (51, of 3, William Street, Kimblesworth, Durham); Annie Coyne (48, of 79, High Street, Blyth, Northumberland); Mary Mikle (45, of Hankey Street, Sleetburn, Durham), and Maggie Connelly (40, of 107, Millburngate, Durham).

– It was also given as her address when she signed for receipt of Purse, Dictionary, Razor Strop and Tin box containing ¿broken? Safety razor, Coin & Silver Watch, on 30 Jun 1920.

• His widow was awarded a pension of 29s 7d a week, for herself and three children, with effect from 16 Dec 1918. (Source: JJJ’s service records, via Ancestry.)

• Buried in Abbeville Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France – Plot IV, Row B, Grave 14.

• Remembered on the memorial in the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare & Institute (as John I. [sic] Johnson) – but not on the parish church memorial.

• It is not yet known whether his widow re-married, there there was more than one Jane A. Johnson who married in Durham in the 1920s.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Dur. Co.Adv. 7/6/1918 + 14/6/1918; Censuses.


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Johnson, Joseph Edwin [aka Joseph Edward]

• Name given as Joseph Edward Johnson on records of his death in WWI, including the memorial to him on his parents’ grave in Bowburn Cemetery. However it was given as Joseph Edwin Johnson in the registration of his birth and in the 1911 Census. (His father, too, was variously called Edward and Edwin.)


• Abt Aug 1894: Birth registered at Durham, Durham. Name given as Joseph Edwin Johnson.

• @ 1901 Census, first names given as Joseph E., aged 6, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at Coke Oven [one of two households at that address], Coxhoe, Durham, with his parents, Edward [aka Edwin] & Gertrude Johnson, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, first names given as Joseph Edwin, aged 16, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at 67, Long Row, Coxhoe, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Helping up in Mine.

• Presumed not to have married.

• Enlisted at Deaf Hill, Durham. (Source: British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry.) The year of enlistment is not given. Copies of his service records not found on Ancestry.

• 3 Jul 1916: Private Joseph Edward [sic] Johnson G/15415, 2nd Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment), formerly 83474, R.F.A., of Coxhoe, Durham, was killed in the Battle of the Somme.

– His age is given as 23 in the inscription in his memory that is on his parents’ grave in Bowburn Cemetery, though he may only have been 22. CWGC give his age as 20, naming his parents as Edwin [sic] and Gertrude Johnson, of Coxhoe, Co. Durham.

– (They later lived at 11, Clarence Street, Bowburn.)

• Remembered on Pier and Face 8 C 9 A and 16 A, Thiepval Memorial, on the Coxhoe War Memorial, (as J. E. Johnson), but not on either of the Bowburn memorials. He is remembered on the grave of his parents, Edward [sic] & Gertrude Johnson, in Bowburn Cemetery. (His name is given there as Joseph Edward Johnson.)

• His parent’s gravestone reads: “In loving remembrance of my dear husband, Edward Johnson. Died 6th Jan. 1951, aged 83 years. Also Gertrude, wife of the above. Died 24th Dec. 1956, aged 83 years. Also son of the above, Pte. Joseph Edward Johnson, Royal Fusiliers. Killed in action, 3rd July 1916, aged 23 years. Sweetest memories ever linger.”

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Jones, Richard William

• Abt Nov 1895: The birth of Richard William Jones was registered at Durham in Q4 1895.

• @ 1901 Census, name given as William Jones, aged 5, born Heugh Hall, living at Heugh Hall, Coxhoe, with his parents, John & Mary Jones, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, name given as William Jones, aged 15, born Heugh Hall, Durham, living at Heugh Hall, Coxhoe, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner Pony Driver Underground.

• Abt Aug 1914: The marriage of Richard William Jones & Elizabeth A. Hardy was registered at Durham in Q3 1914.

• Abt Nov 1914: The birth of his son John was registered at Durham, Durham. Name given as John Jones. Mother’s maiden name = Hardy.

• 20 Oct 1917: Killed in action in WWI. Bombardier 72964 Richard William Jones, 12th Battery, 35th Brigade, Royal Horse & Royal Field Artillery, died from effects of gas, received on 17th October, in France, aged 22.

• He was the “Son of John and Mary Jones, of Heugh Hall, Coxhoe, Co. Durham; husband of Elizabeth Ann Wilkinson (formerly Jones), of 19, Butcher's Row, Haswell Colliery, Sunderland”, according to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

• Buried at Godewaersvelde British Cemetery, Nord, France – Plot 1, Row O, Grave 53.

• Remembered on the parish church memorial (as R.W. Jones) and on the Tursdale Memorial (as William Jones).

• Abt Aug 1919 His widow re-married, to Hugh Wilkinson. Marriage registered at Gateshead IN Q3 1919. Names given as Hugh Wilkinson & Elizabeth A. Jones.

• RWJ still had relatives in Quarrington Hill in 2000.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; Censuses & BMD.


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Kellie, David

• @ 1891 Census, aged 10, born Penicam, Scotland, living at Bowburn [The Leazes? – the third household entered, after the Hare & Greyhound and Bowburn Farm], with his widowed mother, Elizabeth Kellie, etc.. She was described as Farm Worker. His father had been a Dairyman.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 20, born Scotland, living at Copes Terrace, Coxhoe, Durham, with his widowed mother etc.. Described as Banksman at Colliery.

• 14 Jan 1909: Married Mary Ann Charlton Dixon, at the Parish Church, Pelton, Durham. The witnesses were T. Wilkie & E. Kellie. (Source: DK’s service record, via Ancestry.) (The registration of the marriage, at Chester-le-Street, gave his surname as Kelly.)

• 20 Dec 1909: Birth of daughter Marjorie, at Pelton, Durham.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 28, born Wigtonshire, Scotland, living at 6, Ancient Avenue, Coxhoe, with his wife, Mary Ann (27, born Pelton, Durham, married for 2 years and having had 1 child, still living), and their daughter, Marjorie (1, born Pelton). Described as Coke Drawer, Coal Mine.

• 13 Oct 1914: Enlisted at Durham in the Regular Army, into the 6th Bn., East Yorks Regt.. Age given as 28 years and 6 months. Birthplace = Wigtown, Scotland. Occupation = Labourer. (Source: DK’s service records, via Ancestry, from which the following information is also gathered.)

• 14 Oct 1914–23 Nov 1914: Stationed at Beverley.

• 23 Nov 1914–5 Apr 1915: Stationed at Belton Park.

• 10 Apr 1915–29 Jun 1915: Stationed at Whitley Camp.

• 30 Jun 1915: Posted [overseas - destination not shown in damaged record].

• 9 Aug 1915: [Lance?] Corporal David Kellie 13500, 6th Battalion, East Yorkshire Regiment, born Wigtown, Scotland, of Shincliffe Colliery, died in WWI, aged 34 years. He was killed in the Dardanelles, Gallipoli.

– CWGC and British and Irish Military Databases both give rank as Corporal. His service records, via Ancestry, however, give it as L/Corporal… except that one communication in 1921 refers to him once as Private and then as Corporal!

– John Davison (2000) gives his home address as Quality Row, Shincliffe Bank Top, possibly from a Durham Advertiser report. British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry, gives his residence just as Shincliffe Colliery. However they do give his mother’s address as 5, Quality Street, Shincliffe Colliery. Co. Durham.

– By 22 Nov 1916, the War Office was writing to his widow (“Mrs. M. A. C. Kellie”) at 6, Bloomfield Terrace, Pelton Fell. This was given as her address for the next five years, at least.

– 7 Nov 1921: Infantry Records, York, wrote to his mother, Mrs. E. Kellie, at 5, Quality Street, Shincliffe Colliery. Co. Durham. (The letter regretted to inform her that the office had received no personal belongings of DK. Should any be received at some future date, they would be forwarded to “the legal recipient”, i.e. DK’s widow, Mrs. M. A. Kellie.

• He is listed by the CWGC as the son of John & Elizabeth Kellie, and husband of Mary Ann Charlton Kellie, of 6, Bloomfield Terrace, Pelton Fell, Co. Durham.

• Remembered on Panel 51 to 54 of the Helles Memorial and on the memorial in the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare & Institute (as David Kellie), and probably on the war memorial in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe (as David Kelly) – but not on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church memorial.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Durham Advertiser 9/8/1915 + 15/9/1915; CWGC; British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry; Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Laidler, Joseph John

• @ 1891 Scotland Census, aged 5, born Swinton, Berwickshire, living at Humebank, Eccles, Berwickshire, with his parents, Thomas & Isabella Laidler, etc.. His father was a Shepherd. (In 1901 he was described only as Farmer (worker).

• @ 1901 Census, aged 15, born Scotland, living at ¿Armel? House, Glanton, Northumberland, with his parents etc..

• Abt Aug 1909: Married Mary Ann Charlton, daughter of George and the late Elizabeth Charlton, of Medomsley. Marriage registered at Glendale, Northumberland, in Q3 1909. Names given as Mary Ann Charlton & Joseph John Laidler.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 25, born Swinton, Berwickshire, living at Lilburn Tower Farm, West Lilburn, Northumberland, with his father-in-law, George Charlton. With him was his wife, Mary Ann Laidler (35, born Belford, Northumberland, Housekeeper, married for 1 year and having had no children). Described as Traction Engine Driver [at] Sawmill.

• Abt May 1913: His first wife, Mary Ann, died. They had no known children.

• 28 Apr 1915: Married Christina Morton, at Parish Church Shincliffe. The marriage was registered at Durham, Durham, in Q2 1915. Names given as Christina Morton & Joseph J. Laidler. Christina was the daughter of the late Thomas Wallace Morton and Margaret Jane, now Luke, now of Shincliffe. (Christina’s mother had re-married, to Martin Luke, widower, formerly of Heugh Hall Row.)

• 11 Dec 1915: Enlisted, at Newcastle upon Tyne, in the R.C.C. [Road Construction Coy.], Royal Engineers, with service no. 297952. His age was given as 31 years 9 months; married, and described a a Steam Roller Driver. His address was given as 6, South View, Acomb, Hexham, but this was subsequently crossed out, as his wife’s address, and replaced by Shincliffe Bank Top, Co. Durham. His daughter Margaret Ellen’s place of birth, on 12 Feb 1917, however, was given as Acomb, Hexham.

– This recorded age would make his date of birth about Sep 1885. This is consistent with the date of birth suggested by all three Census records.

• 12 Feb 1917: Daughter Margaret Ellen was born, at Acomb, Hexham.

• 2 Jun 1917: His age was declared to be 31 years 5 months, when he was medically examined.

– This age is not consistent with earlier records, but appears to be the basis on which his age was later given, in Army records, after he died. 

• 17 Sep 1917: Mobilised.

• 24 Sep 1917: Appointed to the R.C.Coy, Royal Engineers, at Aldershot.

• 10 Aug 1918: Injured while on duty (run over?) and admitted to hospital.

• 27 Oct 1918: Sapper Joseph John Laidler WR/26725 [formerly 297952], Royal Engineers, 344th Road Construction Coy. [R.C.C.], Roads and Quarries Battalion, died at “Home” [i.e. in the UK], of broncho-pneumonia, arising from his injuries.

– He was aged 32, according to the CWGC. This is consistent with his age as given when he was medically examined in 1917, rather than when he first enlisted, in 1915. In view of earlier Census records, he may have been aged 33.

– The CWGC lists him as “Son of T. and I. Laidler; husband of Christina Laidler, of 6, Pond St., Shincliffe. Born at Swinton, Berwickshire”.

• Guessed to be the Joseph J. Laidler whose death was registered at Lincoln, Lincolnshire, in Q4 1918, aged 32. Perhaps he was in hospital there.

• Buried at Shincliffe (St. Mary) Churchyard.

• His death was reported in the Alnwick Gazette Almanack 1918, page 41. (Source: www.newmp.org.uk).

• Remembered on the war memorial in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe, but not on either memorial in Bowburn.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Latue, George Herbert

• @ 1891 Census, aged 6 months, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at Blackgate, Coxhoe, Durham, with his parents, Joseph & Elizabeth Latue, etc.. His father was described that year as [Stone] Quarryman. But in 1881 he had been described as Sawyer, and in 1901 as Retired Farm Labourer.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 10, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at Pond Row, Shincliffe, Durham, with his parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 20, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at 17, Pond Street, Shincliffe, with his widowed mother, Elizabeth Latue (q.v.) etc.. Described as Coal Miner (Hewer).

• Abt Aug 1914: Married Jane Sarah Bones, daughter of James & Dorothy Bones, of Trimdon Colliery. The marriage was registered at Easington, Durham, in Q3 1914.

• January 1915: Enlisted as volunteer at Durham, according to The Naval & Military Press, via Ancestry.

• Ancestry does not have DHL’s military service records (enlistment etc.), which are presumed to have been destroyed, other than medals: he was awarded the Victory Medal, the British Medal and the 15 Star Medal.

• 22 Sep 1915: Birth of daughter Dorothy, presumably at Shincliffe. It was registered at Durham, Durham, in Q4 1915.

• 10 May 1918: Bombardier George Herbert Latue 66000, of Shincliffe, 14th Brigade, Ammunition Col., Royal Field Artillery, was killed at Somme, France, aged 27 years.

• Buried at Blangy-Tronville communal cemetery, Somme, France.

• The CWGC gives his parents as Joseph & Elizabeth Latue, Shincliffe (later of Grosvenor Terrace, Trimdon Colliery).

• His widow, Jane Sarah Latue, lived at 15, Pond Street, Shincliffe Bank Top, “Darlington”, according to the CWGC record.

• John Davison (2000, p.80) wrote:

“May 1918 was not all good news for the village of Bowburn, and by the 10th of that month we learn of Bowburn‘s fourth casualty of the year with the death of George Herbert Latue. Bombardier Latue served in the 14th Brigade, Ammunition Column, Royal Field Artillery and was 27 years of age when killed on Friday 10th May. He is buried in Blangy-Tronville Communal Cemetery, Somme, France. George was the son of Joseph and Elizabeth Latue of Shincliffe Bank Top (now known as High Shincliffe). George had married Jane Sarah Roper, who lived at Grosvenor Terrace, Trimdon Colliery, Co. Durham, and they settled down to live in 15, Pond Row, Shincliffe Bank Top, later having one child. Prior to enlisting George was employed at Bowburn Colliery and could walk to work as Shincliffe is only a mile away from Bowburn. He volunteered for the Army in January, 1915, and after three months training was sent to France, and had seen much heavy fighting in the R.F.A. The Commanding Officer of Latue’s unit wrote to his wife thus - ‘Dear Mrs. Latue, - It is with deepest sorrow I write to inform you of the death of your dear husband, Bomb. Geo. Latue, who was killed by a shell on the morning of the 10th May, death being instantaneous. I hope it will be a source of comfort to you to know he did not suffer. He was a general favourite among his comrades, who all feel his loss very much, and join with me in sending our sympathies. As an N.C.O. he was one of the best and most capable, and was to have been promoted. This may be a little consolation to you in your great loss, and it may comfort you in the future to know that he died a gallant soldier’s death, which carried with it the respect of all his unit. He was buried in a little French cemetery at Blangy-Tronville, near Amiens.’ His wife also received letters from his comrades, a Sub-Lieutenant, and from the chaplain who conducted the burial service.

“At the time of George’s death, his brother Corporal John Latue was posted as both wounded and missing since 22nd March, the second day of the huge German offensive on the Somme. A younger brother was also serving in the Navy, and this must have been a terrible period for the family. No record exists of the death of John and we must assume, thankfully, that John eventually was found.”

• Remembered on the war memorials in Bowburn Community Centre (as George H. Latue) and in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Lawson, Robert

• @ 1891 Census, aged 2, born Cornforth, living at Kenmires Buildings, Cornforth Lane, Coxhoe, Cornforth, Durham, with his parents, Matthew & Mary Lawson, etc.. His father, a Coal Miner, presumably died soon afterwards, as his mother re-married in 1894.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 12, born Cornforth Lane, Durham, living in Avenue Row, Shincliffe, Durham, with his mother & stepfather, Thomas Swinbank (a Coal Hewer) etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 22, born Sedgefield Parish, Durham, living at 30, Durham Road, Bowburn, Durham, with his mother & stepfather, Thomas Swinbank etc.. Described as Coal Miner, Hewer.

• Abt May 1911: Married Sarah Ellen Bell, daughter of Henry & Elizabeth Ann Bell, of 48, Steavenson Street, Bowburn. Marriage registered at Durham, Durham, in Q2 1911.

• Abt May 1912: Birth of daughter, Ethel Lawson. Birth registered at Durham, Durham, in Q2 1912.

• @ 1914, registered to vote at Bowburn, perhaps at 1, Walker Street, where his wife, Sarah Ellen, was registered in 1918 and lived for over 40 years.

• Bef Oct 1915: Enlisted in the Army. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.) In the County Durham Advertiser on 15 Oct 1915, there was a letter form the Front.

• Abt Feb 1916: Birth of son, Matthew Lawson. Birth registered at Durham, Durham, in Q1 1916.

• Killed in Action in WWI – died at Pas de Calais, France, on Friday 10 Mar 1916, aged 28, leaving wife, Sarah Ellen (née Bell), of 1, Walker Street, Bowburn. He was Acting Bombardier 66006, “D” Bty, 88th Bde, Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery.

• The CWGC says he was “Son of Mrs. Swinbank, of Bowburn; husband of Sarah E. Lawson, of 1, Walker St., Bowburn, Coxhoe, Co. Durham.”

• Buried at Rue-du-Bacquerot No. 1 Military Cemetery, Laventie, Pas de Calais, France – Plot II, Row F, Grave 2. Laventie is a village in the Department of the Pas-de-Calais, 6 kilometres south-west of Armentieres and 11 kilometres north of La Bassee. The cemetery was used until May 1917, and for short periods in 1918, by the units holding the line.

• A packed memorial service was held on Sunday 2 Apr 1916 at the Primitive Methodist Church, Coxhoe, addressed by Rev. M.H?. Chapman, supt. minister, Coxhoe, and attended by members of the local V.T.G..

• Remembered on both the parish church memorial (as R. Lawson) and that in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Robert Lawson).

• His son, Matty (Pat) Lawson, reported on 18 Nov 1998 (when aged 83) that after his father was killed in WWI, “my mother [Sarah Ellen Lawson] was one of three war widows who were allowed to live rent-free in their houses for the rest of their lives. I never heard of any other colliery company that did this. She lived at 1, Walker Street. She died at the age of 81.”

• His brother-in-law, Robert Bell, was also killed in action in WWI.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 15/10/1915 + 24/3/1916 + 31/3/1916 + 7/4/1916 + 9/3/1917 + 8/3/1918.


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Lindsay, James

• @ 1891 Census, aged 3, born Cornforth Moor, Durham, living at Cornforth Moor, Coxhoe, with his parents, William & Barbara Lindsay, etc.. His father was a Labourer in the Coke Ovens.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 13, born Cornforth, Durham, living at Cornforth Moor, Coxhoe, with his parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, unmarried, aged 23, born Coxhoe, Durham, living with parents etc., at Cornforth Moor, Coxhoe. Described as Worker at Bank, Colliery Washers.

• Abt Feb 1914: Married Ann Willey, daughter of Robert & Ann Jemima Willey, of 40, Clarence Street, Bowburn. Marriage registered at Durham in Q2 1914.

• Date of enlistment not known. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.)

• Abt Aug 1916: Birth of daughter, Mary Vera. Birth registered at Durham, Durham, in Q3 1916.

• Tuesday 9 Oct 1917: Killed in Action in WWI. Rifleman 54648 James Lindsay, 1st/8th Bn. West Yorkshire Regt. (Prince of Wales’s Own), killed in France & Flanders, aged 29 years. He is listed as the son of William & Barbara Hannah Lindsay, Hollyhock Terrace.

• Remembered on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Panel 42 to 47 and 162, and on both the Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church memorial (as J. Lindsay) and that in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as James Lindsay).

• @ 1918, registered as absent voter at East View, Bowburn. [Where was this!?!] That was presumably his marital home. His parents were registered at Hollyhock Terrace, Coxhoe; her parents were registered at 40, Clarence Street.

• His widow, Ann, lived at East View, Bowburn (according to John Davison, 2000) and later at 16, Burn Street, Bowburn. CWGC says “Son of William and Barbara Lindsay, of Hollyock Terrace, Coxhoe; husband of Ann Curry (formerly Lindsay), of 16, Burn St., Bowburn, Coxhoe, Co. Durham”.

• Abt May 1919: His widow re-married, in Q2 1919, to Alfred Curry, and lived in Bowburn for the rest of her life.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; John Davison (2000).


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Lindsay, Robert William

• @ 1901 Census, first name just given as William, aged 7, born Heugh Hall, Durham, living at Park Hill, Cassop-cum-Quarrington, with his parents, Thomas & Jane Ann Lindsay, of Wylam Terrace, Park Hill, Coxhoe, etc.. His father was described as a Colliery Leveller (and in 1911 as a Coke Yard Labourer).

• @ 1911 Census, first name just given as William, single, aged 17, born Heugh Hall, Durham, living at Wylam Terrace, Coxhoe, with his parents (q.v.). [No occupation given, though listed as “Worker”].

• 22 Feb 1916: Enlisted in the 8th Bn. Durham Light Infantry, at Barnard Castle, Durham, with regimental no. 4873. He gave his address as c/o Dr. Hickey, Gainford, Darlington, and occupation as Groom. He was aged 22 years and 6 months, and was not married. Height 5' 4.5". Next of kin = Father, Thomas Lindsay, of Albro’ House, 4, Wylam Terrace, Coxhoe, Durham. Religion = CofE.

• His term of service began immediately. His record shows him as in service at home from 22 Feb 1916 till 17 Jul 1916. He entered the Army Reserve, Class B, on the day of his enlistment and was mobilised on 29 Mar 1916.

– In a later record (Casualty Form), his enlistment date was given as 29 Mar 1916 and his age as 22 years and 8 months. That was the date on which he was mobilised. It said his service was reckoned from 29/3/16; presumably that was overruled later.

• 29 Mar 1916: Medical examination found that he had “hyper-extension, left elbow joint, but quite a useful arm. Held a chair out at arms length.” This was classed as a “slight defect but not sufficient to cause rejection”.

• @ 4 May 1916, he was at Newcastle, when he was admonished and lost one day’s pay for being absent from 9.30pm on 4/5/16 till 6.30am the next morning.

• @ 10 Jun 1916, he was at Horton Camp, when he was punished by “4 days CC [confined to camp?]” and forfeited 3 days’ pay, for being absent from Roll Call from 9.30pm till 8am two days later (12/6/16).

• 19 Jul 1916: Embarked at Folkestone for Boulogne, France, with the Expeditionary Force.

• 5 Sep 1916: Transferred to 1st Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment.

• Tuesday 26 Sep 1916: Killed in Action in WWI. Private 26694 Robert William Lindsay, 1st Bn., The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, of Coxhoe, Durham, was killed at Somme, France, aged 23 years. (Formerly no. 4973, DLI.) That he had been killed was confirmed by a statement by 26675 Pte. J. Crutchley, 1/LN Lancs. Rgt.

• Listed by CWGC as the son of Thomas & Jane Lindsay, of 4, Wylam Terrace, Durham Rd., Coxhoe, Co. Durham. On 11 Oct 1916, his mother [“J. A. Lindsay”] wrote from Albro House, Coxhoe, Durham, asking for information about Pte. W. Lindsay, from whom they had had “no word for nearly a month”. Notification of his death was sent on 12 Oct 1916 to his father at Albro House, Coxley [sic], Co. Durham. A note on the copy of this notification letter says that Mrs. Lindsay’s letter had been “[r]eceived after notification of missing was sent out” – though the Record Office No. 5 District, York, date stamp on her letter is 12 Oct 1916.

• Remembered on the Thiepval Memorial ( Pier and Face 11 A); on his parents’ gravestone in St. Paul’s churchyard, Quarrington Hill, and on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church memorial (as R. W. Lindsay).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC website; RWL’s service record, via Ancestry; Monument 178, St. Paul’s churchyard – CA McLee [1991] Monumenal Inscriptions, Quarrington, Co. Durham [Cleveland, N. Yks & S. Durham Family History Society]; County Durham Advertiser 20/10/1916+ 27/9/1918; Censuses.


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Lowery, Michael Joseph

• @ 1901 Census, aged 8, born Ireland, living at 44, Rodridge Street, Hutton Henry, Durham, with his parents, John & Sarah Lowery, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 18, born Rosses Row, Sligo, living at 9, Ninth Street High, Wheatley Hill, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner, Putter, underground.

• Abt Aug 1914: Married Mary Elizabeth McKeown, daughter of John Charles & Frances Elizabeth McKeown [aka McKewon], of 22, Clarence Street, Bowburn. Marriage registered at Sedgefield, in Q3 1914.

• Date of enlistment not known. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.) The same applies to his brother-in-law, James McKeown. It seem likely that they enlisted in the Tyneside Irish together.

• 26 Mar 1916: Birth of son, Michael Joseph Lowery. Registered at Durham, Durham, in Q2 1916.

• 1 Jul 1916: Killed in Action in WWI. Lance Corporal 25/350 Michael Joseph Lowery, 25th (Tyneside Irish) Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, ‘A’ Company, died at La Boisselle, Somme, France, aged 23 years. His brother-in-law, James McKeown [aka McKewon], was killed on the same day.

• Reported missing on 1 Jul 1916; death confirmed in Durham Advertiser 2 Mar 1917.

• He is listed by the CWGC as the son of Sarah and the late John Lowery. His widow, Mary Elizabeth Lowery (née McKeown), lived with her parents at 22, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• No known grave.

• Remembered on Thiepval Memorial (Pier and Face 10B, 11B and 12B); on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorial (as M. Lowery), and on the memorial in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Michael Lowery).

• His widow continued to live at 22, Clarence Street, first (with her son) in her parents’ household and then, after re-marrying in 1946, with her second husband, Edward Atkinson.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Durham Advertiser 2/3/1917, 29/6/1917 & 5/7/1918; Censuses; Electoral registers.


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Marsh, John Henry

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7 [sic], born Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, living at 31, Florence Street, St. Hildas, Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, with his parents, Arthur & Clara Marsh, etc.. His father was described then as a Blast Engine Mine Filler (and in 1911 as a Labourer [Steel Works], at Blast Furnace).

• @ 1911 Census, aged 16, born Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, living at Old Quarrington, Coxhoe, Durham, in the household of his brother-in-law & sister, Allen & Alice Hoggarth. Described as Labourer on Screens.

• 2 Sep 1914: Enlisted in the Durham Light Infantry at Middlesborough.

• 10 Sep 1914: Transferred to the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve at Crystal Palace.

• 9 May 1915: Killed in action, according to CWGC. (See below.)

• 25 May 1915: Embarked HMT "Kalyan" for Alexandria.

• 4 Jun 1915: Able Seaman John Henry Marsh (Kitchener P/929), Anson Bn. R.N. Div., Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, died in WWI. He was missing assumed dead, aged 19.

– This date is as given by Jack Marshall (2008), Great Britain, Royal Naval Division Casualties of The Great War, 1914-1924, via Ancestry.

– CWGC gives date as 9 May 1915. According to Marshall, RND records give it as 6 Jul 1915.

• Marshall reports that it appears that it was at first thought possible that he had absconded. However his death was later accepted by Board Authority.

• The CWGC names his parents as Arthur and Clara Marsh, of 31, Florence St., Middlesbrough. The UK, Royal Navy and Royal Marine War Graves Roll, 1914-1919, via Ancestry, just gives Father: Arthur 31, Florence St, Middlesbrough Yorks, as “Relatives Notified”.

• He is remembered on the Helles Memorial, Panel 8 to 15, and on the Middlesbrough War Memorial, which was unveiled on 11 Nov 1922.

– He is not remembered on any local memorials in Bowburn.

• The Anson Bn. was engaged in the Second Battle of Krithia, 6-8 May 1915. This continued the Allies’ attempts to advance on the Helles battlefield during the Battle of Gallipoli. The village of Krithia and neighbouring hill of Achi Baba had to be captured in order for the British to advance up the Gallipoli peninsula to the forts that controlled passage of the Dardanelles straits. A small amount of ground was captured after two days of costly fighting but the objectives remained out of reach. (Source: Wikipedia.)

• His sister Alice and her husband lived at Old Quarrington till at least 1913, when they had a second child, but had moved to Herrington by 1918.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; Wikipedia; genuki.org.uk; Censuses; Marshall (2008).


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McKeown [aka McKewon], James (Jim)

• Name given as McKeown by Commonwealth War Graves Commission, but as McKewon in 1901 Census and as McKewan in 1911.

• Birthplace given as Shincliffe in 1901 Census and as Trimdon in 1911. I am presuming the first is correct.


• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born Shincliffe, Durham, living in Avenue Row, Shincliffe, with his parents, John Charles & Frances Elizabeth McKeown / McKewon, etc.. His father was a Coal 

Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 19, born Trimdon [sic], Durham, living at 22, Clarence Street, Bowburn, with his parents etc.. Described as Putter.

• Date of enlistment not known. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.) The same applies to his brother-in-law, Michael Joseph Lowery. It seem likely that they enlisted in the Tyneside Irish together.

• 1 Jul 1916: Killed in action in WWI. Lance Corporal 25/1145 James McKewon, 25th (Tyneside Irish) Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers ‘C’ Company, died at La Boisselle, Somme, France, aged 24 years. His brother-in-law, Michael Joseph Lowery, was killed on the same day.

• Reported missing on 1 Jul 1916; death confirmed in Durham Advertiser 2 Mar 1917.

• No known grave.

• Remembered on Thiepval Memorial (Pier and Face 10B, 11B and 12B); on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorial (as J. McKeown), and on the memorial in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as James McKewon).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Durham Advertiser 2/3/1917, 29/6/1917 & 5/7/1918; Censuses.


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Mitchell, Thomas William

• Birth registered at Stockton, Durham, in Q1 1890. Name given as Thomas William Mitchell.

• @ 1891 Census, name given as Thomas William Mitchell, aged 1, born Ferryhill, living at Broom Cottages, Ferryhill, with his parents, George & Frances Mitchell, etc.. His father was in that year described as Sawyer. (In 1901, he was described as Joiner in Colliery and in 1911 as Colliery Joiner & Shaftman.)

• @ 1901 Census, name given as Thomas W. Mitchell, aged 11, born Ferryhill, living at 31, West Street, Brandon Colliery, with his parents etc..

• About Feb 1911: Married Jane Johnson. The marriage was registered at Durham, Durham, in Q1 1911. His name was given as Thomas Mitchell, with no middle name.

• @ 1911 Census, name given as Thomas Mitchell, aged 21, born Ferryhill, Durham, living at Bridge End, Coxhoe, in the house of his wife’s maternal grandparents, Joseph & Catherine Elliott, with his wife, Jane (20, born Coxhoe, Durham). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• Moved to 38, Wylam Street some time after 1911 Census.

• Three Mitchell children were born, registered at Durham, between 1911 and 1915, whose mother’s maiden name was Johnson.

– The birth certificate of his daughter Irene confirmed that her parents were Thomas Mitchell and Jennie [i.e. Jane] née Johnson. It did not give TM’s middle name.

– There were no other (or later) Mitchell-Johnson births registered at Durham, though there was one in Chester-le-Street in Q3 1911 and two in South Shields, in 1918 and 1924. I presume Olive and Margaret J. were also their children, but did not get their birth certificates.

• @ 1914: Thomas William Mitchell was registered to vote at Bowburn. (Presumably the Thomas Mitchell (no middle name), who was also registered, was his uncle, Thomas Henry Mitchell. No street addresses were given in the 1914 register.)

– Thomas Henry Mitchell was living at 1, Wylam Street, Bowburn, with his wife, Sarah Jane, in 1911; at 38, Steavenson Street in 1918, and at 58, Steavenson Street in 1930,1939 and 1945.

• Date of enlistment not known. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.)

– I did wonder whether this was the Thomas Mitchell who was aged 29 years & 10 months [i.e. born about 1885, not 1890] when he enlisted in the Yorkshire Regiment [note: NOT the Northumberland Fusiliers] on 14 Dec 1914, at Sunderland. His regimental no. was 18579. He was described as Coal Miner. However (apart from his age), this TM was married to Ann [née Boast] and their address was 2, Wesley Place, Coxhoe, Durham; and they had four children (Sarah, Susannah, Violet & Charlotte), and he was discharged at West Hartlepool on 1 Apr 1915 as “not being likely to become an efficient soldier”. His address at discharge was also given as 2, Wesley Place, Coxhoe. (Source: Military records via Ancestry.)

– I have found the enlistment of other Thomas Mitchells born abt 1885 at Bearpark, Wolsingham, Hartlepool and Wingate – but none at Ferryhill.

• 9 Apr 1917: Serjeant Thomas Mitchell 42506, 20th (Tyneside Scottish) Bn., Northumberland Fusiliers, born Ferryhill, Durham, was killed in action in WWI, at the Battle of Arras, France. None of these sources gives TM’s age, or address or next of kin. The Naval and Military Press, however, gives his place of birth as Ferryhill, Durham, and age, 26.

• A memorial plaque or card, a photograph of which was sent by TM’s granddaughter,  reads:

In Loving Memory

of

Sergeant T. Mitchell,

of Tyneside Scottish,

The dearly beloved Husband of JENNIE MITCHELL,

of 38, Wylam Street, Bowburn,

who was killed in action in France, April 9th, 1917,

AGED 27 YEARS.

• Buried in the Ballieul Road East Cemetery, St. Laurent-Blangy, Pas de Calais, France – Plot I, Row B, Grave 7.

• Remembered on the memorial in Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church (as T. Mitchell) and on the memorial in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Thomas Mitchell). Neither gives a middle name.

• A service at St. Paul’s Church, addressed by Canon Perkins, of Shadforth, was held in memory of J. [John] Purvis, Thos. Mitchell & Jesse Smith on 1/7/1917.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 11/5/1917, via John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 6/7/17; UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919, via Ancestry.com; local memorials; Censuses, granddaughter.


• TWM’s second cousin, William Kemp (Billy) Wheatley, was a war hero who was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (the second highest honour to a VC) in 1918. He was killed in an accident at Bowburn Colliery in 1922.


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Moore, Henry (Harry)

• Birthplace given in 1901 & 1911 Censuses as Spennymoor, Durham, and presumably the Henry Moore whose birth was registered in Q2 1892 at Auckland, Durham.

– Note, however, that John Davison gives his birthplace as Hauxwell, near Leyburn, Yorkshire.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 8, born Spennymoor, Durham, living at Pond Row, Shincliffe, with his parents, Matthew & Hannah Moore, etc.. First name given as Henry. His father was described that year as Coal Miner Hewer. (In 1911, at Bowburn, he was described as Coal Miner [Official]. He was one of the the officials in Bowburn’s pit pony races, during the 1912 Minimum Wage Strike.)

• @ 1911 Census, aged 18, born Spennymoor, living with parents at 13, Walker Street, Bowburn. Described as School Teacher (Elementary). First name given as Harry.

• Date of enlistment not known. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.) It seems likely that he enlisted early, given that he was a Company Sergeant Major when he died in 1918.

• 30 Oct 1915: Married Georgina Alice Hepple, daughter of Benjamin Seymour & Elizabeth Jane Hepple, of 19, Durham Road, Bowburn. Registered at Durham, Durham, in Q4 1915.  First name given as Harry. (Source of exact date: Davison, 2000.)

• Q2 1916: Birth of son, Harry.

• Joined up with 18th Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, but did not go to France with them.

• 18 Sep 1918 (Wednesday): Killed in Action in Macedonia [but see below], aged 26. Company Sergeant Major 18/1103 Harry Moore was in 2nd Bn., Northumberland Fusiliers, but believed to be serving with 9th South Lancs. Regiment.

– The 9th (Service) Battalion, South Lancashire Regiment, (who say he was serving with them when killed) were serving in Greece at the time. (According to The Long, Long Trail [www.1914-1918.net], it landed at Salonika on 5 November 1915 and was presumably stationed there for the rest of the War.)

– British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd (via Ancestry), give his battalion as 2nd Bn and his place of death as “France & Flanders”. The 2nd Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers, which had been serving with 84th Brigade, 28th Division, in Salonika from 24 Nov 1915 till June 1918, had sailed west and joined 150th Brigade, 50th (Northumbrian) Division, at Martin Église, France, in Sep 1918. If HH was there, he might have died of flu. No record of a grave has been found there, however.

– The CWGC website has contemporary documents about his name being entered on the Doiran Memorial. This is not incompatible with him dying and being buried in France, but it seems unlikely.

• Remembered on the Lake Doiran Memorial, Greece, as Coy. Sjt. Major Harry Moore 18/1103, 2n Bn [sic] Northumberland Fusiliers.

• Also remembered both on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church memorial (as H. Moore) and on that in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Henry Moore).

• He left a widow, Georgina Alice Moore (née Hepple). She is presumed to be the Georgina A. Moore who died at Durham in Q3 1921, aged 24. His son Harry has not yet been identified in later records.

`• Sources: Ancestry.com, including British and Irish Military Databases, via Ancestry; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; Northumberland Fusiliers Museum; Censuses; The Long, Long Trail [www.1914-1918.net]; Paul Reed [http://battlefields1418.50megs.com].


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Morland, Robert

• @ 1901 Census, aged 6, born Lambton, Durham, living at Bourn Moor [Burnmoor], Durham, with his parents, Thomas & Mary Jane etc.. His father was a Colliery Surface Labourer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 16, born Dee Pit, Lambton, Durham, living at Old Bournmoor Cottages, Fencehouses, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Collier Driver [below ground].

• 11 Jan 1915: Enlisted in East Yorkshire Regiment. Regimental No.: 16259. (Source: British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

• 9 Sep 1915:  Pte Robert Morland 16259, East Yorkshire Regiment, qualified for the 15 Star Medal (Roll 0/1/4B, Page 243); theatre of war (1) = France.

– He later also qualified for the Victory Medal and the British Medal: Roll O/1/102 B4, Page 405 (according to original 1914-15 Medal Rolls Index Card, to which these were added in blue ink. – Source: Ancestry.com).

• Spent some time with No. 3 Entrenching Coy. (Source: Davison, 2000.)

• 13 Apr 1917: The Durham Advertiser reported that Robert Moreland [sic], of Durham Road, Coxhoe had been injured and was in hospital in Perth.

• 18 Sep 1918: Medically discharged from the army, after being twice wounded. (??? Source: Durham Advertiser?)

• Nov 1918 (“recently” acc. to County Durham Advertiser 22 Nov 18): Pte. Robert Morland 16259, East Yorkshire Regiment, the son of Mr. & Mrs. T. Morland, Ash Terrace, Bowburn, died at home in Bowburn, aged 22, of wounds received in World War I.

– His death was registered at Sedgefield, Durham in Q4 1918, aged 22. Name given as Robert Morland.

• 4 Feb 1919 [sic]: Pte. Robert Morland 16259, East Yorkshire Regiment, was discharged. Cause of Discharge: K.R. [King’s Regulations] 392(xvi) [“No longer physically fit for service”]. Action taken: List 0/3430/1. (??? Source: British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

• Remembered on both Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church memorial (as R. Moreland) and the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare memorial (as R. Morland), but not by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Dur. Co. Adv. 13/4/1917 + 22/11/1918 p.4; Censuses.


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Morley, Joseph Stephenson

• @ 1891 Census, aged 1, born Newcastle upon Tyne, living at 116, Albion Row, Byker, Newcastle, Northumberland, with his parents, Cuthbert & Allison Stephenson, etc.. His father was described then as a Provision Warehouse Assistant. (By 1901, he had moved to Kings Lynn, Norfolk, where he was a Stevedore. He died in 1911.)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 11, born Newcastle upon Tyne, living in Swinburne Street, St. Margaret, Kings Lynn, Norfolk, with his widowed father etc..

• @ 1911 Census, full name given (Joseph Stephenson Morley), aged 21, born Newcastle on Tyne, living with his sister and brother-in-law, Joseph Carr (q.v.), etc. at Dean Bank, Ferryhill, Durham. Described as Colliery Labourer above ground.

• 8 Sep 1914: Enlisted in 15th Bn., Durham Light Infantry, at Coxhoe, Durham, aged 24 years and 9 months. Place of birth = Newcastle. Not married. Occupation = Coal Miner. Home address not given, but had resided away from his father’s house for three years [etc.]. Declared fit for the Army by Dr. Alex Brown.

• 27 Sep 1915: Killed in action in WWI. Joseph S. Morley, of Bowburn Colliery, Private 15433, 15th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry, killed in action at Loos, France, aged 25 years. He had been in France for 17 days, with total service of 1 year and 20 days.

• Listed by the CWGC as son of the late Cuthbert and Alice [sic] Morley, of King's Lynn, Norfolk. (John Davison’s book calls him Joseph P. S. Morley. Source of the “P” not known.)

• Remembered on the Loos Memorial (Panel 106 and 107); on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as J. Morley), and on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Joseph Morley).

• His brother Cuthbert John was living at 2?, Court? Crescent, Spennymoor, Durham, in December 1919, when medals awarded to Joseph, now deceased, were to be despatched to him. On 29 Apr 1920, CJM signed for receipt of his brother’s 1914-15 Star medal; on 29 May 1920 he signed receipt for a Memorial Scroll; on 17 Dec 1920, he signed for a British War Medal; on 24 Jun 1921, he signed for a Victory Medal. (Source: JSM’s service record, via Ancestry.)

• In Aug / Sep 1919, when the Officer in Charge of Records wrote to his stepmother (who had been given as next of kin), concerning the disposal of a plaque and scroll in commemoration of JSM, his relatives were given as Mrs. Ann Morley, stepmother, 10, Railway Passage, Kings Lynn, Norfolk; John Cuthbert Morley, full brother, Spennymoor, Durham; Annie Carr, full sister, 59, Newton Street, Dean Bank, Ferryhill, Durham; Herbert Morley & Charles Edward Morley, half-brothers, of 10, Railway Passage, and Mary Elizabeth Morley, half-sister, of 10, Railway Passage.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; John Davison (2000).


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Nesham, Thomas Euen

• Name given as Thomas Ewen Nesham in registration of birth and as Thomas Euen Nesham at that of his marriage – and also in WWI records.


• @ 1891 Census, aged 7, born Jarrow, living at 7, Nixon Street, Jarrow, with his parents, Robert & Elizabeth Nesham, etc.. Described as Scholar. His father was described as a Hammerman. (In 1901, he was later described as a Blacksmith’s Striker, Shipbuilding.)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 17, born Hebburn, living at 83, Clayton Street, Jarrow, with his parents etc.. Described as Stone Mason’s Apprentice.

• Abt Aug 1906: Married Elizabeth Riley, at South Shields, Durham. She was possibly the daughter of James & Elizabeth Riley, of Port Clarence, Durham.

• Abt May 1907: Birth of son, Cecil Euen, at Hebburn.

• 1908: TEN became a Police Constable, but he was not the first to serve at Bowburn. (Though he was living at the police house at 15, Durham Road, in 1914, PC Brumpton was there at the time of the 1911 Census.)

• @ 1911 Census, aged 27, born Hebburn, Durham, living at 7, Victoria Street, New Shildon, Durham, with his wife, Elizabeth (31, born Whitley Bay, Northumberland, married for 4 years and having had 1 child, still living), and their son, Cecil E. (3, born Hebburn). Described as Police Constable, Durham County Constabulary.

• 1914: Joined up soon after war began and served in France.

• He served as C.S.M. and then Warrant Officer Class II, 25th Coy., Royal Engineers. Regimental no. 101004.

• Awarded the Victory Medal and the British Medal (Roll RE/101 B55, page 11631).

• He was invalided home and spent a long time in a sanatorium in Wolsingham.

• 11 Feb 1919: Transferred to the Reserve, at which time he was listed as CSM in Unit 142 Army Troops, Royal Engineers.

• He took back his old job but had to give up on health grounds, receiving a police pension of £26 p.a.

• 26 Apr 1920: PC Thomas Euen Nesham 532, of 15, Durham Road (the police house), Bowburn, died at home as a result of wounds incurred during World War I. He was aged 36. He died of pulmonary TB & toxaemia.

• Remembered on the memorial in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Hall (as Thomas Euen Nesham), but not in the parish church.

• His widow did not stay in Bowburn. Nor did she re-marry. Her death was registered at Durham North Eastern, Durham, in Q1 1956, aged 76.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Police History Society (Harry Wynne) re PC Nesham; County Durham Advertiser 30/4/1920; Misc. sources, inc. 1911 Census and electoral rolls, re police houses; www.Ancestry; Censuses.


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Parkin, Nathan

• @ 1901 Census, aged 5, born Lynesack, Durham, living at Quarry Lane, Lynesack and Softley, Durham, with his parents, Lionel Kipling Parkin & Louisa Parkin, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 15, born Butterknowle, Durham, living at 12, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, with his parents etc.. Described as Driver, Coal Miner.

• Enlisted in the Northumberland Fusiliers at Sunderland, according to British and Irish Military Databases. The Naval and Military Press Ltd.. via Ancestry. (His service records have not been found on Ancestry. Assumed lost.)

• 1 Jul 1916: Lance Corporal Nathan Parkin, 26/1179, 26th (Tyneside Irish) Bn., Northumberland Fusiliers, died on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, aged 20. The CWGC gives his parents as Lionel and Louisa Parkin, of 7, Hebburn St., Easington Colliery, Co. Durham.

– Although the CWGC often gives later addresses of next of kin, it seems likely that the family moved away from Bowburn before NP enlisted, as his name is not on any Bowburn memorials, whereas he is on one in Easington church. They probably moved straight to Easington.

• Remembered at the Thiepval Memorial, Pier and Face 10 B 11 B and 12 B; on the memorial plaque in Ascension Church, Easington Colliery, and on a family headstone in Easington Cemetery. (The last has the inscription:  “Also Nathan, beloved son of the above, killed in action in France, July 1, 1916, aged 20.”)

• Not remembered on either of the Bowburn memorials.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Pearson, Andrew

• @ 1901 Census, aged 8, born South Hetton, Durham, living at 11, Richardson Terrace, Chopwell, Durham, with his parents, Frederick George & Sarah Pearson, etc.. His father was a Joiner.

* @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born South Hetton, Easington, Durham, living at 31, Durham Road, Bowburn, with parents, Frederick George and Sarah Pearson (q.v.) and two sisters, Ethel S. (12) and Hilda (9). Described as Miner (Putter).

• Private 30604 Durham Light Infantry, later 207831 in Labour Corps. (Source: British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

– His transfer to the Labour Corps means that he was not able to serve in the front line, because of either wounds or illness. (Source: Davison, 2000.)

• Awarded Victory Medal and British Medal.

• @ 1918: Registered as absent voter 31, Durham Road, Bowburn, the home of his parents.

• 2 Dec 1918 (Monday): Died in WWI – died of influenza & pneumonia, resulting from action in World War I, aged 25 years, after being discharged from Army (presumably because of injury, hence transfer to Labour Corps) and working as a chemical works labourer.

• He died at home at 20, Parker Terrace, Ferryhill, according to John Davison. His parents, however, continued to live in Bowburn, at 31, Durham Road, where they were registered to vote in 1918 and 1930. And I have not found any registration of Andrew Pearson’s marriage in the relevant period (between 1911 and 1919), nor of Mary Jane Urwin, whose family were living at 20, Parker Terrace in 1911. (Nor were the Urwins his mother’s parental family – she was née Rogers – though I have yet to explore that further.)

• 6 Dec 1918: Buried at Cassop-cum-Quarrington. (No surviving headstone.)

• Remembered on the memorials in Christ the King Church, Bowburn (as A. Pearson), and in Bowburn Community Centre (as Andrew Pearson).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; Monument 157, St. Paul’s churchyard – CA McLee (1991) Monumental Inscriptions, Quarrington, Co. Durham (Cleveland, N. Yks & S. Durham Family History Society); Censuses; John Davison (2000).


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Pragnell, Thomas Henry (Tommy)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Houghall, living at 1, Cross Street, Houghall Colliery, Durham, with his parents, Charles & Mary Ellen [Eleanor] Pragnell, etc.. His father was a Horse Shoer.

• @ 1911 Census, name given as Pragnel, aged 17, born Houghall, a servant in the household of William Anderson (30, born South Farm, Lamesley, Durham, Farmer [employer]), at Moor House, Shincliffe, Durham. Described as Stable Boy. His sister, Elizabeth Pragnell (15, born Houghall, General Domestic), was also a servant there.

– Also present were WA’s wife, Lillie (33, born Sands Farm, Sedgefield, married for 4 years and having had 3 children, all living), and two daughters (Phyllis, 2, born South Farm, Lamesley, and Madge, 6 months, born Moor House, Shincliffe), + his mother, Isabella Anderson (widow, 65, born Chow Dean, Low Hill, Durham), + his brother-in-law, Sydney Menzies (bachelor, 32, born Sands Farm, Sedgefield, Race Horse Trainer), + one other servant, Jane [presumably – though it looks like “Jame”] Burns (female, 17, “bachelor”, born Stockton, Durham, General Domestic).

– Isabella & Sydney Menzies’ uncle, George Menzies, was the race horse trainer at Old Quarrington.

• 1915: Enlisted in 21st DLI at Ferryhill Town Hall, aged 22 years and 1 month. Trade or calling given as Farm Horseman; residence as Hall Farm, Keith [i.e. Kirk] Merrington, Co. Durham. Regimental no.: 30293. (Source: British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920, via Ancestry).

• Abt May 1916: Married Blanche Welsh, daughter of George & Eleanor Catherine Welsh, of Spennymoor.

• 31 Jul 1917: Killed in action in the Third Battle of Ypres, at Klein Zillebeke, Ypres, Belgium, aged 23. He was Corporal Pragnell 30293 in 10th Bn., Durham Light Infantry. His parents were given in the CWGC records as Charles & Mary Ellen Pragnell, 16, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, and his wife as Blanche Pragnell, Steavenson Street.

– CWGC gives his widow’s name and address as Blanche Ryder (formerly Pragnell), of 17, Pitt St., East Howle, Ferryhill, Co. Durham. (It names but does not name his parents.)

– His widow had re-married, to Walter Ryder, in Q4 1919. The marriage was registered at Sedgefield.

• Remembered on the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium (Panel 36 & 38) and on memorial in Cassop-cum-Quarrington parish church (as T. H. Pragnell).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 3/8/1917; UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919 about Thomas Henry Pragnell (via Ancestry); Censuses.


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Purvis, John George

• @ 1891 Census, aged 7, born Craghead, Durham, living at 46, Thomas Street, Craghead, Edmondsley, Durham, with his parents, John & Ann Purvis, etc.. His father was a described in that Census as a Coal Waggon Rider, and later as a Colliery Fireman (in 1901) and a Coal Miner Hewer (in 1911).

• @ 1901 Census, aged 17, born Craghead, Durham, living at 23, Millfield Crescent, Newburn, Northumberland, with his parents (q.v.) etc.. Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• 25 Jul 1908: Married Margaret (Maggie) Burns,daughter of Jacob and the late Mary Burns, of Pelton, at Holy Trinity Church, Pelton, Durham.

• 12 Sep 1908: Birth of son Jacob, at West Sherburn, Durham.

• 13 Jul 1910: Birth of daughter Ann (Nancy), at Bowburn.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 27, born Craghead, Durham, living at 8, Wylam Street, Bowburn, with his wife, Margaret (22, born Whitehaven, Cumberland, married for 2 years and having had 2 children, both living), and two children (Jacob, 2, born West Sherburn, Durham, and Ann, 9 months, born, Bowburn, Cassop-cum-Quarrington). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• Jan 1913: Birth of son Roland (Ron), at Bowburn.

• Abt Aug 1915: Birth of son John George B., at Bowburn.

• Thursday 10 May 1917: Killed in Action in WWI. John George Purvis, of 1, Wylam Street, Private 9090, 10th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry, was killed in France & Flanders, aged 33 years. He has no known grave but his name is remembered on the Arras Memorial, Pas de Calais, France, Bay 8; on the memorial in Christ the King Church, Bowburn (as J. G. Purvis), and on the memorial in Bowburn Community Centre (as John George Purvis).

– A Service battalion of Kitchener's Army K1, the 10th Battalion DLI was assigned to 43rd Infantry Brigade of the 14th (Light) Division. Nicknamed the "Shiny Tenth" on account of the large numbers of ex regimental officers with connections to prominent local families. It arrived on the Western front on 21 May 1915, spent its first year on the Ypres salient, and fought on the Somme in August and September 1916. In 1917 it fought at Arras in April [and in the Third Battle of Ypres on the Menin Road in August – after JGP died].

– The Arras Memorial commemorates 34,795 servicemen from the United Kingdom, South Africa and New Zealand who died from the spring of 1916 until 7th August 1918, and who have no known grave. Most of the casualties commemorated here were killed during the Allied offensive during the Battles of Arras in April and May 1917 and during the German attack on the Allied Front from 21st March 1918.

• A service at St. Paul’s Church, addressed by Canon Perkins, of Shadforth, was held in memory of J. [John] Purvis, Thos. Mitchell & Jesse Smith on 1 Jul 1917.

• His widow “was moved to live in the Bell tents, near the edge of the village, after being thrown out of her miner`s house [in Wylam Street] upon the death of her husband”, according to Clive Richardson, her grandson (e-mail to Peter Thorpe, 8 Aug 2012). This may perhaps have been connected with her giving birth to Oswald Purvis, on 25 Jan 1918, who was clearly not JGP’s son.

– She re-married, to Allan Fenwick, on 1 Jan 1919, and continued for a while to live in Bowburn. But she left him, and her children, and moved to Manchester in 1922.

– Her remarkable story after that, including a further (bigamous) marriage, is told in the Richardsons’ book, “The Woman who didn’t Exist”.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; grandson, Clive Richardson, including Clive & Kath Richardson (2005/2014); Censuses.


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Ramsay, William James

• @ 1901 Census, aged 4, born Cassop-cum-Quarrington, Durham, living at Tursdale Colliery with parents, John & Helen Craig Ramsay. His father was then described as Mining Engineer (Employer) but in 1903 took over from his own father, William Ramsay, as Manager of Tursdale Colliery.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 14, born Tursdale, living at West Hetton Lodge, Coxhoe, with his parents etc.

• Sep 1916: Awarded Victory Medal and British Medal (Roll: R. W. Fus. Off. 43, page 61). His father applied “for medals due in respect of services of his late son” on 15 Jan 1921. (There was no regimental number, just rank: Lieut[enant]. Remarks were: “IV 284/W df 7.4.21” and “Decd. NW/7/7889”.)

• 27 Mar 1918: Lieutenant William James Ramsay, son of John & Helen Craig Ramsay, West Hetton Lodge, in the Royal Flying Corps (formerly Royal Welsh Fusiliers), died in WWI. He was killed on the Somme, aged 21.

• According to his great nephew, John Earnshaw (in message on www.e-guestbooks.com/cgi-bin/e-guestbooks/guestbook.cgi on 5 Sep 2009), WJR was initially buried on the airfield at Poulain, north of Amiens, in France, and that about 1919 his remains were re-interred in the Military Cemetery. John Davison reports that he was buried at St. Pierre Cemetery, Amiens, Somme, in Plot XVI, Row C, Grave 4. Presumably that was in 1919.

• Remembered on the parish church memorial originally in St. Paul’s Church, Quarrington Hill, with name given as W. Ramsay, but not on the one in the miners’ institute. Also remembered on a silver flower vase in St. Mary’s Church, Coxhoe, which reads: “To the Glory of god and in memory of Lieut. W. J. Ramsay, R.W.F. att. R.F.C. Killed in action France 27th March 1918”. Also remembered on the Tursdale War Memorial (as William J. Ramsay).

• 29 Nov 1918: Will proved. “RAMSAY, William James, of West Hetton Lodge Coxhoe, county Durham, died 17 March 1918, in France, on active service. Administration: Durham, 29 November, to John Ramsay, colliery manager. Effects £275 14s 10d.” (England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations),1861-1941, via Ancestry).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; John Davison (2000), great nephew, John Earnshaw (in message on www.e-guestbooks.com).


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Ramshaw, Thomas

• @ 1901 Census, aged 2, born Brandon, Durham, living at 24, Frederick Street, Meadowfield, Brandon, with his parents, John William & Agnes Ramshaw, etc. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 12, born Brandon, Durham, living at 25, Clarence Street, Bowburn, with his parents etc.

• 4 Jul 1916: Enlisted in the Durham Light Infantry at Durham (Army Reserve). Aged 17 years 11 months, his address was given as 25, Clarance [Clarence[ Street, Bowburn Colliery, Coxhoe, and his trade of calling as Miner, Bowburn Colliery. He was 5 ft 6.25 ins tall and weighed 140lbs. Anglican. His next of kin was his father.

• 20 Apr 1918: Mobilised and posted the next day with 3 DLI to South Shields.

• 4 Sep 1918: Posted to France (from Folkestone to Boulogne to base depot at Étaples).

• Sunday 29 Sep 1918: Private Thomas Ramshaw 74187, 20th Bn. Durham Light Infantry, of 25, Clarence Street, Bowburn, was wounded and died from his wounds the same day, in France, aged 19 years.

• No known grave.

• Remembered at the Tyne Cot Memorial, Zonnebeke, West-Vlaanderen (Panel 128 to 131 and 162/162A) and on both the parish church (as T. Ramshaw) and miners’s welfare memorials (as Thomas Ramshaw).

• A memorial service was held at the Primitive Methodist Chapel, Bowburn on 22 Nov 1918.

• @ 1918, TR was still registered, to vote, as an absent voter, at 25, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• 7 Oct 1919: Rev. Thomas Wardle signed a statement listing TR’s living relatives. They were his father & mother, and six brothers & sisters (Hilda, 19; Agnes, 17; Ida, 15; John J., 12; Will, 7, and Gladys, 3), all of 25, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• Nov 1921: His mother signed receipt of TR’s British, War and Victory Medals.

• 8 Mar 1920: TR’s personal effected were sent to his mother, Mrs. A. Ramshaw, at 25, Clarence Street, Bowburn, Coxhoe. They consisted of “Note case, Safety Razor in case, Photos, Small Wallet, Purse, Disc, Lighter, Badge, Shoulder Badges, Brooch, 3 Coins”. She signed acknowledging receipt of these the next day.

• TM’s maternal uncle, Matthew Lee, MAY HAVE married Grace Perryman, whose brother Alf was killed in the Battle of Loos on 25 Sep 1915.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; John Davison (2000); County Durham Advertiser 22/11/1918.


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Robinson, Ernest Ridley

• @ 1891 Census, aged 5, [birthplace not known], living at 4, Pensher Street, Bishopwearmouth, Sunderland, with his parents, Francis Hodgson Robinson & Ann Hutton Robinson, etc.. His father was described as Groom & Coachman.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 14, born Sunderland, Durham, living at 12, Briery Vale Road, Sunderland, with his parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, unmarried, aged 24, born Bishop Wearmouth, Sunderland, Durham, living at Carnabys Buildings, Tursdale Colliery, via Ferryhill, Durham, with his brother, Thomas Joseph (q.v.) etc.. Described as Timber Leader [in mine]. (Their father, at the time of that year’s Census, was an inmate at the Sunderland Borough Asylum, Ryhope, Sunderland.)

• 8 Aug 1914: Enlisted in the Durham Light Infantry, at Durham.

• 3 Feb 1916: Killed in action in WWI. Private E. R. Robinson 12357, 10th Bn. Durham Light Infantry, son of Francis and Anne Robinson, of Briery Dale, Sunderland, died on 3 Feb 1916, aged 29, in Belgium.

• He was buried in grave II. B. 13, Essex Farm Cemetery, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

• The statement and declaration of all ERR’s living relatives, undated but presumably made in 1919, was signed by his brother, Thomas J. Robinson, of Carnaby’s Buildings, Tursdale Colliery. It is not possible to read most of this document (available on ancestry.com), as it is damaged. But it looks as if the parents’ names were entered, with the names of two brothers (George, 46, [address not clear], and Thomas, 42?, of Carnaby’s Buildings),and two sisters (…da? [presumed to be Ada] Longstaff, 30?, of Sunderland…, and Jenny Baldwin, 20, of XXX [perhaps Leeds, where she married in 1918]). These four were ERR’s only surviving siblings.

• ERR did not marry.

• The CWGC list ERR’s name and casualty details and includes the additional information that he was the son of Francis and Anne Robinson, of Briery Dale, Sunderland. However it looks as if it was his brother Thomas Joseph who was acting as head of family, or next of kin. It is his name and address that is entered by the Imperial War Graves Commission [as it was then] on its schedule of headstones at the Essex Farm Cemetery.

• His brother, Sapper Francis Albert Edward Robinson 398454, 4th Field Survey Coy., Royal Engineers, was also killed in action, on 23 Sep 1918. He was buried at the Terlinchun British Cemetery, Wimille, Pas de Calais, France (grave IV. B. 27).

• Remembered on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Ernest Robinson).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Salisbury, Walter

• @ 1891 Census, aged 5, born Bowburn, Scholar, living at Blackgate, Coxhoe, Durham, with his father, Thomas Salisbury, a widower, etc.. His father was described as Farmer, then, but was in 1901 described as Beer House Keeper (own account) and in 1911, when they lived at the Oddfellows Arms, Coxhoe, as Innkeeper (own account).

• @ 1901 Census, aged 16, born Coxhoe, living at Church Street, Coxhoe, Durham, with his father (q.v) etc.. Described as Barman.

• @ 1911 Census, single, aged 26, born Bowburn, living at the Oddfellows Arms, Coxhoe, Durham, with his father etc.. Described as Barman [working] at home.

• At some stage, he managed the Oddfellows Arms for his father.

• Enlisted at Coxhoe, Durham. (Source: Record of death from British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry – but service records, other than medal rolls index card, not found.)

• Awarded Victory and British Medals (Roll D/101 B/28, page 2891).

• 26 Aug 1917: Killed in Action in WWI. Walter Salisbury, of Oddfellows Arms, Coxhoe, Private 270201 [formerly 30974, D.L.I., and 281749, H.L.I., acc. to British and Irish Military Databases], 5/6th Bn. Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment), killed in France & Flanders, aged 32 years.

• Remembered on the Nieurport Memorial, Nieurport, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium, and (as Walter Salisbury) on a new plaque dedicated at a ceremony in Bowburn Community Centre on 28 Oct 2001. (The new plaque had the names of four men who had not been on either the parish church memorial or the one in the community centre [previously the miners’ welfare hall]. The other three men were Horace Davies, William Foster and Frederick Stephenson.)

• Formerly served in DLI (30974) and Highland Light Infantry (281749).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 21/9/17; Censuses.


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Scott, John Albert (aka Albert John)

• Name given at baptism; in registration of birth and marriage, and in successive Censuses, as either John A. or John Albert Scott. The CWGC also has his name as J. A. Scott. British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry, however, gives his name as Albert John Scott, and the local memorial give it as either Albert J. Scott or A. Scott.

• 6 Apr 1892: Baptised at Hartlepool, Durham, having been born on 19 March, the son of John James Scott & Bertha Newmarch.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born West Hartlepool, living at Coxhoe Bridge, Coxhoe, Durham, with his father and step-mother, John Thomas & Elizabeth A. Scott. His father was then described as Retired Innkeeper, having been Innkeeper of the Bridge Inn, Coxhoe, as had his father (John Albert’s grandfather) before him. It was not a permanent retirement, though…

• @ 1911 Census, aged 19, born Hartlepool, Durham, living at Pit Laddie Inn, Coxhoe, with his father and step-mother etc.. Described as Carpenter’s Apprentice. His father was the Innkeeper.

• 1 Aug 1914: Married Jennie Appleby, daughter of Isabella & the late Thomas Appleby, of 5, Ash Terrace, Bowburn.

• Enlisted at Bowburn, according to British and Irish Military Databases. However no service records were found on Ancestry. Presumed to have been destroyed.

• Abt Nov 1915: Birth of daughter, Isabella E. (Ella). 

• Friday 2 Nov 1917: Killed in Action in WWI. John Albert Scott, Private 57518, D Company, 17th Battalion (N.E.R. Pioneers) Northumberland Fusiliers, killed in Ypres, aged 25 years.

• Buried in the Bard Cottage Cemetery, Boezinge, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium – Plot V, Row B, Grave 4.

• Mourned by widow (whom he married 1/8/1914) and daughter Ella, and by father, mother, sisters & brothers (inc. James Walter Scott, serving in France) – County Durham Advertiser 30/11/1917 + 1/11/18.

• His widow, Jennie Scott, lived at West Lodge [location not known], Bowburn, according to Davison (2000). She later lived at 9, Pond Street, Shincliffe.

• Remembered on the memorials in Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church (as A. Scott), in Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Albert J. Scott) and in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Shincliffe.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; North East War Memorials Project.


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Smith, Jesse

• @ 1881 Census, aged 3, born Spennymoor, living with parents, Jesse & Harriet Ann Smith, etc.. His father was a Coal Miner.

• @ 1891 Census, name given as Jessie, aged 13, born East Howle, Durham, living at Smith Street, South Hetton, Durham, with his parents etc..

• @ 1901 Census, aged 23, born South Hetton [sic], Durham, living with his parents-in-law [who were perhaps his grandparents-in-law] (q.v.) at 1, Forster Street, Haswell, Durham, with his wife, Ethel (18, born South Hetton). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• Abt Aug 1900: Married Ethel Slater, the granddaughter of Joseph & Jane Slater, of 1, Forster Street, Haswell, Durham. She was probably the daughter of Frances Ann Slater, who died, unmarried, in 1885. Her grandfather was a Horse Keeper (under ground). The marriage was registered at Easington in Q3 1900.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 33, born East Howle, Ferryhill, Durham, living at 28, Wylam Street, Bowburn, with his wife, Ethel (28, born South Hetton, Easington, Durham, married for 10 years and having had no children), + a visitor [his sister], Jane Smith (single, 18, born South Hetton), + a boarder, John Cull Hudson (single, 22, born South Hetton, Blacksmith). Described as Coal Miner Hewer.

• JS was a local preacher in the Durham Circuit.

• Enlisted at Coxhoe, Durham. Date unknown. (Source: British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry. (His service records have not been found on Ancestry.)

• 24 Apr 1917: Killed in Action in WWI. Lance Corporal Jesse Smith 18234, 7th/8th Bn. King’s Own Scottish Borderers, of Steavenson Street, died in the the Arras offensive, France, aged 40 years. He has no known grave.

• 21 Oct 1917: Birth of son, Jesse Smith.

• Note that address was given as Steavenson Street. This was probably no. 31, where his widow was living when son Jesse was born. In 1911, that was the home of James SMITH Browbank. It has not yet been established whether they were related. However, if they were, it was probably a very distant relationship!)

• CWGC: “Husband of Ethel Collingwood (formerly Smith), of 8, Burn St., Bowburn, Coxhoe, Co. Durham.” (A local paper report – unless I copied this incorrectly – gave her name as Elizabeth Smith, of Steavenson Street, Bowburn. This should be Ethel.)

• June 1917: A memorial service at Wesleyan Church, Bowburn, was conducted by Mr. J. Good of Trimdon.

• 1 Jul 1917: A service at St. Paul’s Church, addressed by Canon Perkins, of Shadforth, was held in memory of John Purvis, Thomas Mitchell & Jesse Smith.

• Remembered on the Arras Memorial, Pas de Calais, France (Bay 6) and on both the parish church memorial (as J. Smith) and the miners’ welfare memorial at Bowburn (as Jesse Smith) .

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; CWGC; John Davison (2000); Censuses; County Durham Advertiser 25 Jun 1916 + 18 May 1917 + 22 Jun 17. (John Davison says there was also a report of him being injured, in the Advertiser on 25 Aug 1916. [Or is that the report I've noted as 25 Jun 1916? To be checked…])

• His wife’s cousin James William Wood lived at Whitwell South Farm, Bowburn. He was enlisted in 1915 but died on 10 Feb 1917 of pneumonia at Blyth before being posted to France.


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Snook, William

• @ 1891 Census, aged 6, born Humshaugh, Northumberland, living at Bavington Hamlet, Little Bavington, Bellingham, Hexham, Northumberland, with his parents, Joseph & Elizabeth Snook, etc.. His father was in that year described as Cartman & Shepherd (Domestic [i.e. in private service]) but was later a Coachman (Domestic).

• @ 1901 Census, name given as Will, aged 17, born Hexham, Northumberland, a servant in the household of William Proudfoot (45, born Norfolk, Hotel Keeper) at New Elvet, Durham. Described as Ostler. Also present were WP’s wife, stepdaughters & son, and mother-in-law, and four other servants (Mary Murphy, Agnes Murphy, Mary E. Dunkin & Jane Ashworth).

• Married Edith Rogers in Q3 1910, at Durham.

• Not found yet in 1911 Census. Not living in Bowburn – though his in-laws were living at 26, Clarence Street, Bowburn.

• Abt May 1911: Birth of daughter, Mary Edna.

• Abt May 1913: Birth of daughter, Edith.

• Abt May 1915: Birth of son, William R..

• Enlistment and other service records (other than medals) not found on Ancestry.

• Awarded Victory Medal, British Medal and 15 Star Medal. Rank given first as Acting Bombadier and then as Acting Corporal.

• 25 Mar 1917: William Snook, Driver 90284, “D” Bty. 50th Bde. Royal Field Artillery, born Hexham, Northumberland, died in WWI, aged 32 years. He died of pneumonia at No. 12 Stationary Hospital, France, after being wounded while serving in Belgium. Son of Joseph & Elizabeth Snook, 14, Hopper Street, Sunderland (late of South End, Durham), and husband of Edith Snook, of 15, Wylam St., Bowburn, Coxhoe, Co. Durham. (Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC & British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., viaAncestry.)

• Buried at St. Pol Communal Cemetery Extension, Pas de Calais – D. 27.

• Remembered on both the parish church memorial (as W. Snooks) and that in the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as William Snooks) – in both cases the surname is spelt Snooks, in error.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; John Davison (2000); CWGC; County Durham Advertiser xx/4/1917 + 29/3/18.

• His widow, Edith, was evicted from Peat Edge, Bowburn. She was pregnant with her son, John Thomas Snook, at the time. (Source: WS’s granddaughter, Anne Hindshaw.) She later lived at 15, Wylam Street, Bowburn, with her future husband, Simpson Woods.

– Presumably this eviction was in 1920, and presumably John Thomas was by AN Other father. (His birth, on 15 Aug 1920, however, was registered in the name of John Thomas Snook, with mother’s maiden name = Rogers.) It seems quite likely that JTS’s father was Simpson Adamson Woods, with whom she lived for several years and later married.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; inter-war electoral registers; WS’s granddaughter, Anne Hindshaw.


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Stephenson, Frederick (Fred, aka Kidder)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at Front Street, Coxhoe, with his parents, George & Frances Jane Stephenson, etc.. His father was at that time a Coal Hewer but in 1911 was the Inn Keeper at the West Hetton Inn, Coxhoe.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born Coxhoe, Durham, living at the West Hetton Inn, Coxhoe, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner Putter.

• Worked at Tursdale Colliery.

• 29 Sep 1915: Frederick (Fred, aka “Kidder”) Stephenson, of Clarence Villa, Durham Road, Bowburn, Coxhoe, Private 2320*, 1st/5th Bn., Durham Light Infantry, was killed in WWI, aged 20 years. He died in a Casualty Clearing Station at Bailleul, Nord, France, from wounds received on 25 Sep 1915, when “he daringly went to within ten yards of the German trenches and brought back a khaki flag which the enemy had stuck up”.

– CWGC archives give his regimental number as 2320 on at least two documents but as 2830 on its Grave Registration Report Form (date 14 Feb 1921).

– His service records have not been found on Ancestry (with either number). Presumed to have been destroyed.

• Presumed not to have married.

• His next of kin were then recorded as being his parents, George & Frances Stephenson, of Clarence Villa, Durham Road, Coxhoe. It is likely, but not confirmed, that they had taken of the Clarence Villa Hotel, aka the Kicking Cuddy. The licensee there in 1911 had been Thomas Alderson, and in 1918 it was William Tweddle. However it may have been FS’s father George Stephenson, formally of the West Hetton Inn, at the time of FS’s death. There were, however, several other men registered to vote at “Clarence Villa” in 1918, who presumably lived in what is now called Clarence Street, [Park Hill], Coxhoe.

• FS was buried at Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, Nord, France – Plot II, Row A, Grave 13.

• He is remembered on the Tursdale Memorial (as Frederick Stephenson) and (also as Frederick Stephenson) on a supplementary plaque placed beside the memorial in Bowburn Community Centre on 28 Oct 2001. (The new plaque had the names of four men who had not been on either the parish church memorial or the one in the community centre [previously the miners’ welfare hall]. The other three men were Horace Davies, Walter Salisbury and William Foster.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 8/10/1915 p.4 + 22/10/1915 + 29/9/16; Censuses.


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Wake, Joseph Pyke

• Possibly a distant relative of Thomas Shevels (born abt 1875), who in 1911 was living with his family at 6, Wylam Street, Bowburn.

• Mr. Pyke Wake was headmaster of Bowburn Schools from when they opened in 1909. He was a well-known preacher on the Durham Wesleyan Circuit, and Choirmaster and Class Leader at Bowburn Wesleyan Church.


• Born at Perkinsville, Pelton, Durham, in about Aug 1876. (The birth was registered at Chester-le-Street in Q3 1876. Name given as Joseph Pake [sic] Wake in typed BMD index.)

– His father was John Thomas Wake, a Coal Miner. He may have died soon after JPW was born… although it is possible that he didn’t die till Q2 1882.

– The birth of a Joseph Pike [sic] Wake was also registered at Chester-le-Street in Q4 1872. The death of that JPW was registered at Lanchester in Q2 1875, aged 2. He was possibly son in same family.

• @ 1881 Census, aged 4, born Perkinsville, Durham, living at 27, Blue R [Row or Road], Edmondsley, Waldride Parish, Durham, with his “widowed” mother, Susannah Wake, and two brothers.

• @ 1891 Census, aged 14, born Perkinsville, Durham, living at Daisy Hill, [Sacriston], Witton Gilbert [Parish], Durham, with his widowed mother and brother William at Daisy Hill, [Sacriston], Witton Gilbert [Parish], Durham. Described as Pupil Teacher.

– @ 1891 Census, he was also registered in the household of his uncle, John Leadbitter (56, born South Hetton, Durham, Blacksmith), at 1, Old East Row, West Herrington, Durham. There, too, he was listed at aged 14, born Perkinsville, Durham, and described as Pupil Teacher).

• @ 1901 Census, name given as Joseph Pike Wake, aged 24, born England, boarding at Inch View, Kelso, Roxburghshire, in the household of Barbara Scott (58, born Kelso, Living On Own Means). Described as Public School Teacher. Also present was BS’s daughter, Mary Scott (24, born England, [no occupational description]).

• 18 April 1904: Edmondsley Council School logbook notes that “Mr. Joseph Pyke Wake, 1st Certified Assistant of Kelso Public School has been engaged to begin duties here…” The head teacher, John Clayton, recorded that Joseph began work on Monday 18 July,teaching the oldest children, class 1, or Standard VII. (Source: DRO records about men commemorated on the Durham County Council war memorial – [DRI re DCCWM])

– Also there was his future wife, Minnie Sykes, a pupil teacher. (ibid).

• 23 Aug 1909: John Clayton recorded that JPW had “left here to become Head Teacher of the Bowburn Council School”. (ibid).

• @ 1911 Census, aged 34, born Perkinsville, Pelton, Durham, living at Dunholm, [now 1, Durham Road West], Bowburn, Coxhoe, with his wife, Minnie (23, born Bill Quay, Durham, married for 1 year and having had no children), + a boarder, Eliz. J. [or I.?] Carruthers (single, 23, born Wigton, Cumberland, School Teacher, County Council). Described as Schoolmaster, County Council.

• 27 Nov 1915: JP attested (i.e. he made an obligation to come forward when called upon, for which he was paid 2s.9d.), under the ‘Derby Scheme’, introduced in the previous month. (Source: DRI re DCCWM.)

• 17 Jul 1916: Enlisted in the Royal Artillery (Royal Garrison Artillery), at the age of 40. (ibid).

• 3 Feb 1917: Sent to France and posted to the 252nd Siege Battery, with the rank of bombardier (equivalent to an infantry corporal). The Siege Batteries operated heavy howitzers mounted in fixed emplacements, firing large calibre shells, often at the enemy artillery. (ibid).

• 4 Aug 1917: Badly wounded when he was struck in the back by a piece of a German shell which had burst behind his gun, fracturing his spine. (ibid).

• 14 Aug 1917: Killed in action in WWI. Joseph Pyke Wake, of “Dunholm”, Durham Road, Bowburn, Bombardier 104402, 252nd Siege Bty, Royal Garrison Artillery, died in St. Omer Base Hospital, France of wounds received the week before, aged 41 years.

• Buried in the Longuenesse (St. Omer) Souvenir Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France – Plot IV, Row D, Grave 22.

• Remembered on the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church Memorial (as J. P. Wake), on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare Memorial (as Joseph Pyke Wake) and on the war memorial in County Hall, Durham, (as Josh. P. Wake).

• Among the personal effects which were sent back to his widow, Minnie, were his pipe, false teeth, wedding ring, a Bellows English-French dictionary, a second English-French dictionary, a Bible, and two china ornaments (one broken). (Source: DRI re DCCWM.)

• His widow, Minnie Wake, lived at Dunholm. She was a certificated assistant at the school and was absent from school from 21 Aug 1917, returning on 3 Sep 1917.

• However, in December 1917, she was appointed as Headmistress of Catchgate Infant School, and subsequently moved to live at Annfield Plain. (ibid.)

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000), p.67); School log book, via “Snippets”, a leaflet produced by Bowburn Infant School to mark its 75th anniversary in 1984, and County Durham Advertiser 24/8/1917 + 16/8/1918; Censuses; Durham Records Office record re County Hall memorial.


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Waugh, Christopher

• @ 1891 Census, aged 9 months, born Page Bank, Durham, living at School Row, Page Bank, Stockley, Durham, with his parents, Robert & Jane Waugh, etc.. His father was a Coal Miner, who was killed at Page Bank Colliery in 1902.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 10, born Willington, Durham, living at School Row, Page Bank, Stockley, Durham, with his parents etc..

• @ 1911 Census, aged 20, born Page Bank, Durham, living at 18, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, with his brother-in-law, Cuthbert John Morley (q.v. – whose brother, Joseph Stephenson Morley, also died in WWI) and sister, Hannah, etc. (including his mother and brother Thomas). Described as Coal Miner, Hewer.

• Enlisted in Northumberland Fusiliers (Tyneside Pioneers) at Newcastle upon Tyne. (His service records were not found on Ancestry; assumed to have been destroyed.)

• Awarded Victory and British Medals (Roll 0/1/105B2, page 341).

• 10 Apr 1918: Christopher Waugh, Corporal 18/1122, 18th (Tyneside Pioneers) Bn., Northumberland Fusiliers, died in WWI, in a Military Hospital at Nottingham, from the effects of gas received in France. He was aged 27 years, born South Brancepeth, Durham.The CWGC gives his parents as Jane Waugh, 8, Park Crescent, Spennymoor and the late Robert Waugh, formerly of Page Bank.

• Buried in Crook & Willington (St. Steven’s) Cemetery – Plot 2, Row U, Grave N29.

• Remembered on both the Parish Church memorial (as C. Waugh) and that on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare (as Christopher Waugh).

• His brother Nicholas also died in the War, on 5 Jul 1917 (but had no connection with Bowburn, according to John Davison). So was his sister Hannah’s brother-in-law, Joseph Stephenson Morley.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; John Davison (2000) + Durham Chronicle 19/4/1918; Censuses.


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Welsh, John

• JW worked at Bowburn Colliery and is remembered on the Colliery Welfare Memorial to men killed in WWI. However he may not have lived in the village – in 1911, he was living with his widowed mother and siblings at Kilburn Crescent, Framwellgate, Durham, and, according to my notes [see below], that was given as his address in CWGC records of his death.

• He does not seem to have been related to the John & Elizabeth Hall Welsh who were living at 4, Durham Road, Bowburn, in 1911.


• @ 1881 Census, surname given as Walsh, aged 3, born Durham City, living at Tenements, 6, St. Giles, Durham, with his parents, John & Mary Ann Welsh, etc.. His father was a Stone Mason.

• @ 1891 Census, aged 13, born Durham [City], living at 5, Renney Street, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Stonemason’s Apprentice.

• @ 1901 Census, aged 23, born Durham [City], living at 14, Renny Street, Durham, with his parents etc.. Described as Stonemason.

• @ 1911 Census, name given as Walsh [sic], single, aged 33, born Durham City, living at 1, Kilburne Terrace, 103, Framwellgate, Durham, with his widowed mother and seven siblings. Described as Coal Miner, Labourer, underground). (Two of his brothers were also described Coal Miner, Labourer, underground.)

• JW worked on bank at Bowburn Colliery and was well-known in local rugby circles.

• No record of a marriage has been found; assumed to have remained single.

• Record of enlistment and other service records not [yet] found on Ancestry.

• @ 12 Jul 1915, he had been awarded the Victory Medal, the British Medal and the 15 Star. (British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.) In that record, he was already ex-DLI Private 15364 and was by then Yorkshire Regiment Private 21100.

• 23 Apr 1916: Killed in Action in WWI – Private J. Welsh 21100, 7th Bn., Yorkshire Hussars (Alexandra, Princes of Wales' Own) [CWGC names regiment as Yorkshire Regiment], formerly 15364, Durham L. I., born Gilesgate, Durham, died from wounds to head and neck received in action in France & Flanders, aged 38.

• Buried in the Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, Nord, France – Plot II, Row D, Grave 168.

• He is remembered on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare plaque, with name spelt “Walsh” (as it had been in the 1911 Census).

• Two of his brothers, Pte Charles Welsh & Pte Fred Welsh, were also mention in newspaper reports.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; County Durham Advertiser 5/5/1916; British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry; Durham Chronicle 12/11/1916; Censuses.


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Wilson, Edward (Ted)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 7, born Carnaby’s Buildings, Tursdale, Durham, living at Tursdale Colliery, with his parents, Cuthbert & Sarah Wilson, etc.. His father was a Coal Hewer.

• @ 1911 Census, aged 17, born Cassop, Durham, living at Blenkinsops Buildings, Tursdale, with his parents etc.. Described as Coal Miner [Driver],.

• 18 Jan 1915: Enlisted in Border Regiment, at Coxhoe, Durham. Name given as Edward Wilson, aged 21 years 7 months, occupation Coal Miner, not married. Residence: Gate House, Tursdale Colliery, Co. Durham. Regimental Number: 19373.

• 9 Aug 1915: Private Edward Wilson 19373, Border Regiment, 6th Battalion, born Coxhoe, Durham, died in WWI. He was killed in action at Gallipoli.

• Remembered on the Helles Memorial (Panel 119 to 125 or 222 and 223), and on the Tursdale War Memorial (as Edward Wilson).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses.


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Winwood, George

• Not apparently related to the William Richard Winwood who was living at 59, Steavenson Street, Bowburn, in 1911.


• @ 1901 Census, aged 9, born Bowburn, Durham, living at Carnaby’s Buildings, Tursdale, Durham, with his parents, George & Annie Winwood, etc.. His father was a Coal Miner, Deputy Overman.

• @ 1911 Census, his father, George Winwood (48, Coal Miner Deputy Overman), was living at 12, Arden Street, Shotton Colliery, Durham, with his wife, Annie (46), and four children).

• George jnr was reported after his death as having been a member of the choir and Young Men’s Bible Class at St. Saviour’s Church, Shotton. So presumably he lived with his parents at Shotton for at least some time.

• @ 1911 Census, George Winwood, single, aged 19, born Quarrington Hill, Durham, Ordinary Seaman George Winwood (Church of England) was on board HMS Implacable, Battleship, Atlantic Fleet, Gibraltar. (Captain = Capt. Robert J. Prendergast.)

• 28 Aug 1914: Able Seaman George Winwood, J/2550, Royal Navy, was killed in action on board H.M.S. “Arethusa”, when it hit a mine off Heligoland Blight, North Sea, aged 23 years. Born in Bowburn, he was the son of George Winwood, of 12, Arden Street, Shotton Colliery, formerly deputy overman at Tursdale Colliery.

• Buried at St. Saviour Churchyard (middle portion), Shotton, Durham. Shotton Colliery Band played at the funeral and there was a firing party from the Northumberland Fusiliers. The Rev. E. Fenton was vicar & friend.

• According to John Davison, GW was the first person connected with Bowburn to die in WWI.

• Not remembered on either the Cassop-cum-Quarrington Parish Church memorial or the one in Bowburn Miners Welfare.

• John James Stephenson, the husband of his cousin Jennie Stephenson (née Thompson), also died at sea in 1914. So did his cousin [parents unknown], Joseph Winwood (in 1918).

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); CWGC; Durham Advertiser 4/9/1914; Durham Chronicle 4/9/1914 + 18/2/1918; Censuses.


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Winwood, Joseph

• Born about August 1892 at Houghton-le-Spring, Durham, the son of John Thomas Winwood & Mary Jane Winwood (née Cardey). His mother died the next spring and his father re-married the following year.

• @ 1901 & 1911 Censuses, aged 8 & 18, born Houghton-le-Spring, Durham, living at Heugh Hall, Quarrington, Durham, with his aunt and uncle, Ralph & Emma Eleanor (née Winwood) Heckler. Ralph Heckler was a Coal Hewer. 

• Abt Feb 1913: Married Mary Ellen Barron, daughter of John George & Margaret Barron, who in 1911 were living at Cornforth Moor, Coxhoe. The marriage was registered at Durham in Q1 1913.

• Abt May 1913: Birth of his daughter, Eva.

• Abt Aug 1914: Birth of his daughter, Margaret.

• Enlisted at Coxhoe, according to British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry. However this does not give date. JW’s service records were not found on Ancestry and are presumed to have been destroyed.

• 28 Jul 1915: First “entered theatre of war”, namely France. (Source: British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, via Ancestry.)

• 23 Sep 1918: Lance Bombardier Joseph Winwood 72982 Royal Field Artillery [Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery, according to Military-Genealogy.com], "A" Bty., 82nd Bde., was killed in action on the Somme.

• Buried in the Villers-Faucon Communal Cemetery Extension (Grave Reference II. C. 10.).

• Abt Nov 1918: Birth of his son, Joseph H.

• Remembered on the Tursdale War Memorial (as Joseph Winwood). He is also, probably, the J. Wynwood [sic] who is remembered on the Cassop-cum-Quarringotn parish church memorial.

• His wife re-married, to Thomas Henry Patterson, Coal Miner, who was born at Heugh Hall and later lived with his parents at Cornforth Moor, in Q1 1921.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; CWGC; local memorials; Censuses; Military-Genealogy.com.


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Wood, James William

• @ 1891 Census, aged 10 months, born Hunwick, Durham, living with his parents, William & Mary Ann Wood, etc. at Hunwick Lane Ends, Durham. His father was at that time a Greengrocer. (In 1901, when they lived at Whitwell, he was described as Farmer (employer); he died in 1908.)

• @ 1901 Census, aged 10, born Hunwick, Durham, living at Whitwell South [Farm], Whitwell, Durham, with his parents, etc..

• @ 1911 Census, single, aged 20, born Hunwick Lane Ends, Durham, living at Whitwell South Farm, Bowburn, Coxhoe, Durham, with his widowed mother and two sisters. Described as Farmer’s Son working on farm.

• 11 Dec 1915: Enlisted at Coxhoe, Durham, and appointed to the 88th Training Reserve Battalion. His age was given as 25 years 5 months (26 years 6 months when he was medically examined on 19 Jan 1917); he was 5 ft 4.5 ins tall (5 ft 6 ins, and weighing 142 lbs, when he was medically examined a year later), and his trade or calling as Farm Assistant and as Ploughman. He was not married; his next of kin was his mother, Mary Ann Wood, of Whitwell South Farm.

• 24 Jan 1917: Mobilised, joining up at Newcastle upon Tyne.

• 10 Feb 1917: Private James William Wood TR/5/73481, 19th Training Reserve Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales Own) [according to British and Irish Military Databases, The Naval and Military Press Ltd., via Ancestry], died from bronchitis & syncope contracted when stationed at Blyth, Northumberland, in the Training Reserve.

• Not found in CWGC records.

• @ 3 May 1919: His mother’s address was still Whitwell South Farm, Bowburn, Coxhoe, Durham, when she signed a statement and declaration of JWW’s living relatives. So were his brother Joseph (39) and his sister Pheobe [sic] A. (23); his other sister, Jane H. Wood (33) was then living at Cassop Grange Farm, Bowburn.

• He was buried at St. Mary’s Churchyard, Sherburn.

• Remembered on the Bowburn Miners’ Welfare memorial (as James Wood), and on that of the parish church (as J. W. Wood) – as a resident of “Quarrington”, rather than Bowburn.

• Sources: Ancestry.com; local memorials; John Davison (2000); Durham Advertiser 23/2/1917; Censuses.

• His cousin Ethel (née Slater) was married to Jesse Smith. They lived at 28, Wylam Street, Bowburn. He was killed in action on 24 Apr 1917.