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Roll of Honour (Shaw - Thomson)
Private John William SHAW ( ? )
6th Bn. The Yorkshire Regiment
Born: Abt. Aug 1892, Glenridding, Westmorland
John William Shaw was the second child of John Shaw, a Lead Miner at the Greenside mine, and his wife Mary (nee Nicholson). He was baptised, at the Wesleyan Chapel in Glenridding on the 18th September 1892. His parents had both been raised in Glenridding and had married in October 1884. John William was one of four children, his siblings were; Edith (1889), Amy (1898) and Frank (1899). In 1901, the family were living at 'Glenridding' in Glenridding but had moved to 2, Stybarrow Terrace by 1911 and John William, then 18, was working as a Lead Miner, like his father, at the Greenside Mine. Edith had left home by 1911, possibly going to Canada. John’s mother Mary died in August 1912, aged 54 years, and his father on the 19th August 1914, aged 59 years. We’re not entirely sure what happened to the younger children at this point (there were other 'Shaws' in the village, possibly relatives, who may have taken them in) but it appears that John moved to Ryton in County Durham, presumably to work in the Coal Mines, and married Annie H(arvey?) Walton there around February 1917.
The Roll of Honour in Glenridding records that John served in the '6th Yorks'. There are quite a number of 'John W(illiam) Shaws' listed in the records, who served with Yorkshire raised regiments, so unfortunately we have not been able to find evidence that would identify 'our-man' with any certainty. However, the newspaper report about his wounding, is evidence that he served in a theatre of war, so would have at least received the British War Medal and Victory Medal. Without knowing when he enlisted or when he first entered a theatre of war, we cannot say if he was entitled to receive the 1914/15 Star.
We have no further information on either John or his siblings. As mentioned above, we believe that Edith may have gone to Canada in 1912. Again, there are quite a number of 'Shaws' who appear on ships manifests so it isn't possible to be certain that any of them are John or his siblings.
Census Returns: 1891, 1901, 1911 Baptism Register John William Shaw Wounding Report - C&W Herald 8 Jun 1918
Seaman Harry SLEE (306791)
Stoker 1st Class, Royal Navy
Born: 12 Sep 1885, Patterdale, Westmorland
Died: Abt Feb 1942, Durham Area (Age 56)
Harry Slee was the sixth child of Robert Slee, a Wagonner at the Greenside mine, and his wife Margaret Jane (nee Young). He was baptised, along with 5 of his siblings, at Patterdale Church on 10th June 1888. Harry and his family moved to Rookings in Patterdale around 1884 from Hawkshead where he had been a Labourer in a Quarry. Harry was one of ten children, his siblings were; Ellen (c1875), Thomas (c1877), Margaret Anne (c1879), Robert (1881-1917), Fred (c1884), Ada (c1889), William (1892), John (1895-1917) and Arthur (1899). By 1891 the family were living in nearby Blowick, where their son William was born, then back to Rookings for while where John was born and finally to Blowick again where Arthur was born around September 1899. A couple of months later in 1899, we discovered that John's father Robert had died in Newcastle, so by 1901 his widow Margaret was living in Witton Park just west of Bishop Auckland with her seven youngest children including Harry who, along with brother Fred, was working as a Putter in a coal-mine. Harry's mother, Margaret Jane Slee, died in early 1907 at the age of 58.
On the 22nd June 1904, at the age of 18, Harry enlisted with the Royal Navy for a 12 year term of service. He trained as a stoker aboard the destroyer HMS Acheron until early 1905, before moving to the shore-based station HMS Pembroke II, which was a Royal Naval Air Station at Eastchurch on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent. He returned there many times over the course of the next 15 years of his naval service. Before the outbreak of war he served aboard a number of ships including HMS Antrim, HMS Pathfinder (one of the first ships to be sunk at the outbreak of World War One), HMS Attentive, HMS Vindictive and HMS Forward (a three funnel Scout Class Cruiser of 2,850 tons built to be the ‘eyes of the Grand Fleet’). He was a member of the ships company of HMS Forward when war was declared.
On the 16th December 1914, HMS Forward saw heavy action when Hartlepool, was attacked by the German cruisers Blücher, Seydlitz and Moltke. At 8am, the German ships appeared off Hartlepool and opened fire on the town. Their initial targets were the two gun emplacements that protected the harbour, but they soon opened fire on the docks and harbour entrance. Over 100 people died as more than 1,000 shells rained down on the town for about 40 minutes. While another ship, HMS Patrol was able to get out to sea (where she was hit and badly damaged), HMS Forward was delayed by the German barrage. When she did finally get out of Hartlepool, the German battle-cruisers had already turned east to make their escape. HMS Forward was ordered to keep in touch with them but they soon escaped into the mist. There seems to be some dispute over the exact details of the engagement as another account says that HMS Forward was in fact blocked by HMS Patrol and a British Submarine which had dived to avoid the Germans had grounded itself. Either way it was an eventful start to the war for Harry and his shipmates. After the raid HMS Forward was sent to the 7th Destroyer Flotilla in the Humber. In April 1915 Harry transferred to back to shore and HMS Pembroke II for a year before returning to HMS Forward from June 1915 to July 1918. In May 1915 HMS Forward was one of five of the seven surviving scout cruisers to make up the 6th Light Cruiser Squadron, whose duties were to guard the east coast against Zeppelin raids. This squadron was soon broken up as newer ships became available, and HMS Forward was sent to the Mediterranean. From June 1916 to the end of the war she served in the Aegean, with Harry aboard for most of it. He ended the war aboard HMS Blake before his final demobilisation in March 1919.
Harry's RN Medal Roll shows that he was awarded the 1914/15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. We do not know what happened to Harry after the war although we think he died in Durham in March 1942 aged 56.
Driver John SLEE (43422)
Royal Field Artillery
Born: 31 Jul 1895, Patterdale, Westmorland
Died: 2 Jun 1917, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland (Age 21)
John Slee was the ninth child born to Robert Slee, a Wagonner at Greenside mine, and his wife Margaret Jane (nee Young). Robert and his family moved to Rookings in Patterdale around 1888 from Hawkshead where he had been a Labourer in a Quarry. John was one of ten children, his siblings were; Ellen (c1875), Thomas (c1877), Margaret Anne (c1879), Robert (1881-1917), Fred (c1884), Harry (1885-1942), Ada (c1889), William (1892) and Arthur (1899). By 1891 the family were living in nearby Blowick, where their son William was born, then back to Rookings for while where John was born and finally to Blowick again where Arthur was born around September 1899. A couple of months later in 1899, we discovered that John's father Robert had died in Newcastle, so by 1901 his widow Margaret was living in Witton Park just west of Bishop Auckland with her seven youngest children including John. It seems unlikely that John would have attended school in Patterdale but some of his brothers and sisters would certainly have done. John's mother, Margaret Jane Slee, died in early 1907 at the age of 58. As yet, we have been unable to trace John's whereabouts from 1901 to when he joined the army in 1915.
In the early part of 1915, John went to Carlisle where he enlisted in 8th Division Royal Field Artillery (RFA) and trained as a Driver with the Division's ammunition column. As a Driver, John would have been responsible for two of the horses in the six horse team that pulled the two ton ammunition wagons. The 8th Divisional Ammunition Column was an integral part the 8th Division Royal Field Artillery and was formed at Hursley Park, Winchester during October 1914 from regular army units returning from around the British Empire. We know that John arrived in France to join them on the 4th September 1915. During 1916, they were in action at the Battle of The Somme and in March 1917 fought in the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line before moving to Flanders. The 8th Div. RFA fought in two major battles during 1917, 'The Battle of Pilckem Ridge' and 'The Battle of Langemarck' but these occurred after John had died so we cannot attribute his injuries to a specific action. Even so, travelling in the slow moving ammunition columns must have been quite dangerous in itself, as German shelling of the trenches and support lines was fairly constant. Being seen by a German spotter plane would make them a valuable target.
The CWGC records show that John died at the First Northern General Hospital in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on the 2nd June 1917 and that he was 22 years of age. This suggests that he was wounded in Flanders, brought home to recover but sadly died from his wounds.The burial register records that he died in Walkergate Hospital (probably part of the military run 1st NGH), aged 23 years and was buried on the 6th June in St Andrews and Jesmond Cemetery in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. John's actual age when he died was 21 years and 10 months.
John had completed about two years service with the RFA, the majority of which was spent in France and Flanders. His medal card shows that he was posthumously awarded the Victory Medal, British War Medal and the 1915 Star.
For Research Documents and a more detailed biography, see his War Memorial Page Click Here
Sergeant Robert SLEE (20/476)
South African Constabulary
Northumberland Fusiliers (Tyneside Scottish & Irish Bns)
Born: Mar 1881, Skelwith, Lancashire
Died: 26 Apr 1917, Arras, France (Age 36)
Robert Slee was born in March 1881 in Skelwith, near Hawkshead, which at that time was part of Lancashire. He was the fourth child born to Robert Slee, a Labourer in a Quarry in the Coniston area, and his wife Margaret Jane (nee Young). His family moved to Rookings in Patterdale around 1888. Robert was one of ten children, his siblings were; Ellen (c1875), Thomas (c1877), Margaret Anne (c1879), Fred (c1884), Harry (1885-1942), Ada (c1889), William (1892), John (1895-1917) and Arthur (1899). It appears that at least six of their children had not been baptised, so on the 10th of June 1888, Thomas, Margaret Anne, Robert, Fred, Harry and Ada were all baptised at St Patrick's Church. By 1891 the family were living in nearby Blowick, where their son William was born, then back to Rookings for while where John was born and finally to Blowick again where Arthur was born around September 1899. The family left the dale soon after this, as a couple of months later in 1899, we discovered that John's father Robert had died in Newcastle. As Robert was 7 years old when the family arrived at Rookings and 18 when they left, he would have almost certainly attended school in Patterdale and then probably worked at the Greenside Mine for a few years. By 1901 the family were found living at Witton Park just west of Bishop Auckland; Robert, now 20 years old and working as a Labourer in a Pipe Works, is recorded as the 'Head of the Household', along with his widowed mother and his six younger brothers and sisters. During 1901, after the census had been taken, Robert enlisted as a Trooper in the South African Constabulary and fought in a number of the Boer War battles. He was discharged from ''C' (Eastern) Division of the S.A.C. and returned to England on the 25th February 1903.
Towards the end of 1904, Robert married Mary Elizabeth Nicholson in the Auckland District of County Durham. In 1909, Robert received 2 further clasps to attach to the Queen's South African Medal that he had been awarded in the 2nd Boer War - the address these clasps were sent to was 'Leadgate Farm, Chopwell, Co. Durham', it is not known if he was working on the farm or just lodging there. However, by April 1911, they were living in Chopwell itself, where Robert was working as a Coalminer, and had two children, Joseph and Robert (a third child had died). The census also records that they had adopted a boy called John R Webster, who was 15 and worked as a Driver in the mine (could he have been a child by one of Robert's older sisters Ellen or Margaret Anne?). Robert's mother, Margaret Jane Slee, died in early 1907 at the age of 58.
Soon after war was declared, Robert enlisted in the 20th (Tyneside Scottish) Battalion of the Northumberland Fusiliers on the 31st October 1914. The Battalion was initially billeted in various parts of Newcastle and using the City Football Ground for training. However, a new camp was built at Alnwick and on the 29th January 1915, the 20th Battalion marched the 40 miles, over two days, to their new huts in Camp C. During their training, all Battalions of the Northumberland Fusiliers marched back to Newcastle in May, where a gathering of 18,000 troops on Town Moor on the 20th May were reviewed by H.M.King George V. On the 1st August all four Battalions of the Tyneside Scottish travelled south by train (ten trains were needed) to Salisbury Plain. After 6 weeks of intensive training, they moved again on 26th September to Sandhill Camp near Warminster. At some point, we do not know when, Robert was transferred to the 25th (Tyneside Irish) Battalion, this could have been on his promotion to Sergeant but there is another possible explanation. It is recorded that when the 34th Divisional Cyclist Company was formed, every Battalion sent men to join it's ranks but when the company disbanded in late 1916, those who had served in the Tyneside Scottish were re-transferred into the Tyneside Irish.
By the end of 1915, frustrations were building amongst the officers and men all of the Battalions of both the Tyneside Scottish and Irish at not being sent to France - they had been training for over a year. Orders finally came through on the 4th of January 1916 that they were to be mobilised. At 6.10pm on Sunday the 9th January, the 20th Tyneside Scottish left Southampton bound for Le Havre in France. One consequence of this delay was that none of the men in the Tyneside Scottish or Irish Battalions received the 1914/15 Star Medal. By the end of January they were in the trenches at the front in the Fleurbaix sector.
No records have been found which tell us exactly when Robert transferred from the 20th (1st Scottish Tyneside) to the 25th (2nd Tyneside Irish) Battalion but as they were both part of the 34th Division, they would have been fighting close to each other and in the same battles. It is well documented that all of the Tyneside Battalions of the Northumberland Fusiliers took part in the terrible offensive on the 1st July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme. The 20th Bn. were amongst those that led the advance across open ground to try and take the village of La Boisselle, whilst the 25th were behind in reserve. The bravery of the men, who continued their slow advance, even though their comrades were being killed and wounded all around them due to the heavy machine gun fire, is legendary. The 20th Battalion was almost wiped out, at least 350 killed and over 300 wounded, so either Robert was very lucky or had already transferred to the 25th Battalion (even so, they had at least 144 men killed and some 360 wounded). By the 3rd July, the survivors of the battle had been withdrawn for rest and when reinforcements arrived later in July, both Battalions were moved north to Armentieres, which was considered to be a 'quieter' area.
We can be sure that by early 1917 Robert was a Sergeant with the 25th Tyneside Irish Battalion, when they moved, at the beginning of March, from the Bois Grenier sector near Armentieres to Ecoivres near Arras. He would have taken part in the Battle of Arras which began at 5am on the 9th April, when the 24th and 25th (Tyneside Irish) Battalions advanced into No-Man's Land whilst the Artillery laid down a barrage on the German front lines. They succeeded in taking the German front line and reserve trenches but as they advanced further they came under heavy and accurate machine-gun fire. Significant ground was gained but at a high price, the 25th alone recorded 24 dead, 143 wounded and 63 missing (quite likely dead). On the 14th April, the 25th Battalion were relieved and after marching back to Arras, travelled by motor bus to billets in Marquay for a rest and to rebuild the Battalion with a draft of reinforcements, many of whom had no front line experience and had to be trained - some had never even fired a rifle!
After only a week's rest and with very little training, the reformed 25th Battalion were back in the front line trenches near Roeux. The Germans still held Roeux and had machine guns and snipers in and about the Chemical Works and the Chateau. In preparation for an attack that was planned for the morning of the 27th April, the Battalion were employed in deepening their trenches. This work was done under heavy shellfire and the war diary records that three men were killed during those preparations. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission, records that Sergeant Robert Slee died on the 26th April and is commemorated on the Arras Memorial for the missing. It is possible that Robert was one of those three but if he was killed in his Battalion's trenches, surely his body would have been recovered for burial in a known grave. It therefore seems possible that he was killed the next day leading his company during the attack on the 27th April and that his body was not found or identified.
Robert served in the South African Constabulary for around 18 months and was awarded the Silver Queen's South Africa Medal with five clasps. In WW1, he completed about two and a half years service with the Northumberland Fusiliers, of which almost fifteen months were spent in France. His medal card shows that he was posthumously awarded the Victory Medal and British War Medal.
For Research Documents and a more detailed biography, see his War Memorial Page Click Here
Private George W STOUT ( )
Died: (Age )
Work in Progress
Private Stephen STOUT ( )
Durham Light Infantry
Died: (Age )
Work in Progress
Private Henry STOUT ( )
Died: (Age )
Work in Progress
Private George THOMPSON ( )
Died: (Age )
Work in Progress
Private Edmund THOMPSON ( )
Died: (Age )
Work in Progress
Driver Moffat THOMPSON (159724)
'C' Battery, 72nd (Army) Brigade, Royal Field Artillery
Born: 22 Feb 1889, Patterdale, Westmorland
Died: Abt Aug 1969, Derwent (RD), East Riding Yorkshire (Age 80)
Moffat Thompson was the second youngest child of Edmund Thompson, a Farmer and Lead Miner of Noran Bank Farm in Patterdale, and his wife Elizabeth (nee Thompson) and was baptised at St Patrick’s Church in Patterdale on the 31st March 1889. Moffat was one of eleven children, his siblings were; John (1866-1945), Margaret Ann (1868), George (1869), Mary Elizabeth (1872), Edmund (1875), Thomas (1880), twins Hannah and Eleanor (1883), William (1887) and Brownrigg (1892-1941). Moffat would have attended Patterdale School with his siblings and on leaving school we believe he worked as a Shepherd, whilst living with his father at Side Farm. In March 1908, Isabella Brownlee, a daughter of Jas. Brownlee, a slate dresser from Hartsop, gave birth to a baby girl that she named Hilda - Moffat was named as the father but he did not marry Isabella and so was ordered by the Magistrates to pay maintenance of 2s 6d per week until the girl was 14 years of age. On 10th April 1912, Moffat married Edith Hall, the daughter of John Hall, who had been working as a housekeeper at Grisedale Lodge for Robert Grisedale.
Moffat enlisted in Guisborough, Yorkshire on the 11th December 1915 into the Royal Field Artillery (RFA). He stated his occupation as a Farm Bailiff and his address as Home Farm, Hulton Hall, Guisborough. Shortly afterwards, on 22nd January 1916 Edith gave birth there to a daughter, Edith Frances. Sometime during 1916, they moved to Market Square in Cartmel-in-Furness. Given his age and marital status, Moffat would have been in Group 32 of the Derby Scheme who were notified on the 7th March 1916 that they were to be mobilised but in fact this didn't occur until the 21st August 1916, he was then posted to the 8th Reserve Battery RFA. A few days later, Edith and their baby moved back to Yorkshire, to 15, Murton Street, Keighley.
Moffat arrived in France on the 29th October 1916, where he soon joined B Battery of the 252nd Brigade RFA - part of the 50th (Northumbrian) Division. When he joined the unit they were enjoying a short lived rest period from the line but were rotated back into the line from the 23rd November 1916, and were in positions on the Somme from the start of 1917. On the 20th January 1917 the 252nd Brigade RFA left the 50th Division to become an Army Brigade RFA and was renamed the 72nd (Army) Brigade RFA and Moffat was transferred to C Battery. In April 1917, the Brigade was attached to the 1st Canadian Division and about to fight in the Battle of Vimy Ridge (9th to the 12th April 1917). However, Moffat would have missed this action as he was admitted to hospital on the 7th April 1917 suffering from an 'Inflammation of the Connective Tissue (ICT)' to the left leg. It cannot have been too serious as he was discharged a week later.
On the 10th November 1917 Moffat was granted leave to the UK and 5 days later he was posted to Italy, where he remained until March 1918. British forces had been sent to Italy in an effort to strengthen Italian resistance to enemy attack after a recent disaster at Caporetto. By all accounts conditions there were wonderful after the horrors of the Western Front but sadly for Moffat and his Battery they were sent back to the Western Front, returning on the 28th March 1918. Apart from another short period of leave at Christmas 1918, Moffat then remained in France until his demobilisation in September 1919.
At some point after the war, Moffat and his family appear to have settled near York (in the Derwent sub-registration district) in East Yorkshire, which is where he died around August 1969. We do know that his illegitimate daughter Hilda married Marian Tamborski in Cockermouth in 1949. Marian was a shoemaker from Poland and was granted naturalisation in January 1953 stating his address as Maiden Moor, Grange-in-Borrowdale near Keswick.
Air Mechanic Brownrigg THOMPSON (251333)
Royal Air Force
Born: 10 Feb 1892, Patterdale, Westmorland
Died: 23 Jun 1941, Kendal, Westmorland (Age 50)
Brownrigg Thompson was the youngest child of Edmund Thompson, a Farmer and Lead Miner of Noran Bank Farm in Patterdale, and his wife Elizabeth (nee Thompson). Brownrigg was one of eleven children, his siblings were; John (1866-1945), Margaret Ann (1868), George (1869), Mary Elizabeth (1872), Edmund (1875), Thomas (1880), twins Hannah and Eleanor (1883), William (1887) and Moffat (1889-1969). Brownrigg would have attended Patterdale School with his siblings. We’re not sure exactly what he did after leaving school, although in May 1907, when he was Confirmed at the age of 15, his address was given as Side Farm, so perhaps he was farm labouring. However, when the 1911 Census was taken, he was lodging in a Kendal boarding house and working as a Clerk for a company making 'handles'. He married Edith Lavinia James, in Kendal, around February 1913 and had a son, Edmund, around June the same year.
Unlike his elder brothers, it appears that Brownrigg did not join up at the start of World War War - given his age and marital status, he would have been in Group 29 of the Derby Scheme who were mobilised on the 7th April 1916 - so perhaps he had requested deferral or was in a skilled/protected occupation. In 1918 his occupation was listed as a 'Supervisor of Wood-working'. From the service records we have been able to find, it appears that he joined the Royal Naval Air Service late on in the war on the 21st February 1918. He was initially posted to HMS President II, the Royal Naval shore based training establishment at Chatham, but by the end of March 1918 he had moved to the Naval Aviation depot at Chingford. On the 1st April 1918, the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) and the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) were amalgamated to form the new Royal Air Force. On the 5th April he was posted to the RAF Depot at Tregantle, an aircraft storage depot in Cornwall, but which was also used for training Aircraft Mechanics. Two months later he was posted to the RAF Number 10 Training Depot Station, at Harling Road Airfield near Norwich. Whilst there, Brownrigg was promoted to Aircraft Mechanic second class in August 1918. His final posting, on the 7th February 1919, was to the Heaton Park Despatch Centre in Manchester, from where he was discharged from the RAF on the 30th April 1920.
There is some confusion about which medals, if any, Brownrigg was entitled to receive. His postings suggest that he never entered a theatre of war and therefore should not receive any, yet his Navy Medal Roll shows the Victory Medal against his name. However, this was never awarded without the British War Medal (as the award criteria were the same), although there were some special exceptions for Navy and RAF personnel, such as delivering aircraft to France.
After the war Brownrigg returned to Kendal, where he lived with his wife Edith until his death on the 23rd June 1941. Edith continued living in Kendal until her death on 3rd June 1965. She left her estate to their son Edmund Thompson, an insurance official.
Trooper Thomas THOMSON ( )
Westmorland & Cumberland Yeomanry
Died: (Age )
Surname spelled Thompson on Mrs Marshalls list