Part 7

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Part 7' page

Farndon in the Great War

By George Harper

Continuing the War Memorial entries.

Now that I am drawing to the end of my account of my researches into Farndon’s heroes of the Great War all that remains for justice to be done to their sacrifice is to refer to the men I have yet to cover.

Some of these will get a relatively brief mention for a variety of reasons but mainly because, after the passage of a century or more, the information is no longer available or families have left the area. So my intention is to deal with these first.

  • Lance Corporal Harry Barlow. Harry Barlow served in the 1st Battalion of the Sherwood Foresters. His father Edward was a foundry labourer from South Scarle and his mother Lucy came from Moorhouse, but they had moved to Farndon where Harry and his six siblings were all born. Having risen to the rank of Lance Corporal Harry Barlow was killed on June 24th 1918 at the age of 20 and lies buried in the military cemetery of Sissonne in France.
  • Gunner Robert Doleman. Robert served in the Royal Field Artillery. His father William was a maltster from Norton Disney in Lincolnshire and his mother Eliza was a Farndon girl. Again, like Harry Barlow, Robert and his siblings were all born in Farndon. Gunner Doleman was killed on 26th September 1915 aged 30. Like so many victims his body doesn’t seem to have been identified, so his death is recorded on a plaque on the Loos Memorial.
  • Private Edward Godson.  Godson served in the South Staffordshire Regiment and strictly speaking he was not a Farndon man. He was the son of Walter and Sarah Godson of Ossington. His civilian occupation was that of gardener and for 3 years he was employed at Ossington Hall before becoming Head Gardener for Colonel Darwin at Elston Hall. The Farndon connection came about through his marriage to Florence, a Farndon resident. He died as a result of wounds received from shellfire on September 15th 1917, aged 32, and is buried in Vlamertinghe military cemetery in Belgium. He is remembered not only on the Farndon memorial but also in Elston and Ossington. As was the case with all relatives of dead soldiers, Florence had the privilege of composing a brief epitaph for the gravestone. Her chosen inscription on her husband’s gravestone reads “Till the day break. Flo”. Florence returned to Farndon and lies buried in the same grave as her sister Cassandra and father Francis Cree in Farndon Cemetery and she is an illustration of another of the tragedies of war – she died in 1974 aged 92 and so spent the last 57 years of her life as a widow.
  • Lance Corporal Ernest Pride. Ernest was the son of John a local maltster and Alice who lived in Farndon Fields. He worked for a local butcher, Clutterbuck, in Newark before joining up in the 8th Battalion Sherwood Foresters and he served in France for about 14 months. He was regarded as a good NCO and had a cheerful outlook on life. He was killed on July 13th 1916 at the age of19 in the early stages of the Battle of the Somme. The Battalion had relieved the Liverpool Scottish Regiment in the front line near Bellacourt when B Company lines were subjected to a heavy German bombardment. Ernest was killed by a shell from a trench mortar and is commemorated at Bellacourt military cemetery.
  • Private John William Renshaw. He was yet another of the men who served in the local 1/8 Battalion Sherwood Foresters. He was the son of Mr W.B. Renshaw and his wife Mary. He was aged 20 when he was killed in one of the earliest major actions in which his Battalion was engaged, just a few days after Sergeant Harrison. The Battalion had been designated for a diversionary action against German positions around the mining town of Loos. Their particular target was known as the Hohenzollern Redoubt. Private Renshaw was killed on Friday October 15th 1915. He has no known grave and he is commemorated on a panel on the Loos memorial.
  • Private (Sometimes referred to as Drummer) Edgar Sharpe. At the age of 36 Edgar Sharpe could be counted as one of the veterans of the local Battalion of the Sherwood Foresters. His military career began when he joined up in the 2nd Notts. Volunteers before the Territorial Army had even been created. His parents lived at Trent Villas but when he married Edgar moved to Newark. He was a part time soldier until 1914. His full time work was as a core maker at Simpsons. When war was declared he was at summer camp with a lot of the rest of the Battalion so he would have shared the excitement of mobilising in Newark Market Place, preparing for active service and marching off from Newark to Derby via Radcliffe and Nottingham. He survived all the action from 1916 through to November 1917. It was then on November 2nd that he was caught in enemy artillery barrage and killed by shellfire leaving a widow and 2 young children. His grave lies in Philosophe Military Cemetery.
  • Private George Henry Taylor. George Taylor presented me with a lot of problems. The starting point was the brief entry on the War memorial in church which read: “Pte Taylor G. Lincolns”. Nothing in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission site threw up any name which corresponded to this entry and could be associated with this area. Eventually the Newark Advertiser for the week January 31st 1917 showed up the name of Private G H Taylor of the West Yorkshire Regiment as being one of the Farndon casualties. This led to the information that Private George Henry Taylor aged 20 of the 15th Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales Own) had been killed on January 10th 1917. Even this is not totally conclusive evidence of a connection with Farndon since his parents John and Ann lived in Eakring and I would be delighted to discover a more definite link. He is commemorated on the monument at Thiepval.
  • Private James Willows. Private Willows served in the 4th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders. The Willows family lived at ‘The Ivies’ on Farndon Fields and again it seems to have been a case of the parents coming in from surrounding areas for work. George Willows was a maltster from Foston and the mother Emma came from Flintham. James had 2 brothers George and Jack and 2 sisters Sarah Ann and Florrie. He attended Christ Church School and then worked at Warwicks and Richardsons Brewery. He joined up in 1915 and was invalided home twice, once for appendicitis and again for trench feet. He returned to France in May 1917 and was killed in action according to the report from the War Office sometime between September 19th and 21st aged 20. This would be during the later stages of the Battle of Passchendale (properly known as the third Battle of Ypres). His body too was never identified and his name is carved on the panels at Tyne Cot cemetery.

George Harper

This page was added by Website Administrator on 06/05/2015.

If you're already a registered user of this site, please login using the form on the left-hand side of this page.