Allerton Cemetery


Part 2

Winners of the Victoria Cross, buried in the Cemetery


Neither of the following two have been commemorated by the War Graves Commission as their deaths were not war-related.  I believe it right to include their details here.


NURSE, GEORGE EDWARD, 66th Battery, Royal Field Artillery.  died 25/11/1945.

ALLERTON 2G.CE.608. (Pvt mem)       

Corporal Nurse was serving at Colenso, South Africa in December 1899

The London Gazette of 26 January 1900 published the recommendation of the GOC-in-C,. General Redvers Buller, for the award of the VC to two officers and to Cpl Nurse, which stressed that that he believed the recommendation for the VC required proof of initiative, whereas others put forward for lesser awards had been acting under orders.


The General’s report to the Secretary of State for War, also published in the Gazette, included this passage:



Nurse received his VC from the General at Ladysmith, Natal on 18 March 1900.  He rose to be a Battery Sergeant Major and left the army in 1913 after 21 years service.  On the outbreak of war he was recalled and commissioned, ending the war as a temporary captain..  When he died at the age of 73, he was buried at Allerton in a grave which was unmarked for many years, but through local efforts a headstone of the CWGC pattern was produced and dedicated in 1989.  A full account of Nurse’s life and the  story behind the headstone may be found in ‘Liverpool Heroes, Book 2’ – the stories of 18 Liverpool holders of the Victoria Cross.

Note: the rank of Corporal still existed in the Royal Artillery at that period. In later times he would have served as ‘Bombardier’.  See also note at end of section.


RATCLIFFE, William, VC, MM.  Private, South Lancashire Regiment.  2251, Son of William Ratcliffe and Mary Anne (nee Kelly).


Served in South African War, possibly enlisting under-age.  Re-enlisted in 1914, awarded the Military Medal in 1917 for bravery in the field at Messines Ridge. [London Gazette Suppl. 28 July 1917]

Before this award had been gazetted, he had earned the highest honour available, for which the citation appeared in the London Gazette, 2 August 1917:

Victoria Cross

Messines, Belgium, 14 June 1917, Private William Ratcliffe, 2nd Bn, South Lancashire Regiment.  
For most conspicuous bravery ( Messines, France ). After an enemy’s trench had been captured, Private Ratcliffe located an enemy machine gun which was firing on his comrades from the rear, whereupon, single-handed and on his own initiative, he immediately rushed the machine gun position and bayonetted the crew. He then brought the gun back into action in the front line.  This very gallant soldier has displayed great resource on previous occasions, and has set an exceptionally fine example of devotion to duty.

William Ratcliffe was invested with his Victoria Cross by King George V at Buckingham Palace on the 26th September 1917

He died on 26 March 1963.  A full account of his life is given in “Liverpool Heroes, Book 1” – the stories of 16 Liverpool holders of the Victoria Cross.



Part 3

Private memorials found with commemoration of a family member buried or commemorated elsewhere.


While searching for CWGC headstones and other memorials in the Cemetery I came across a number of private memorials recording the names of family members whose burial or official commemoration was elsewhere.  There may be more awaiting discovery.  Because so few memorials are marked with the plot number it has not been possible to give locations, but research at the city’s Record Office may provide the information.


AVERY, PERCY, Private, Scots Guards, 2nd Bn., 33, 20/07/1916, 13087, Son of Robert and Mary Avery, of 74, Cleveland St., Birkenhead. Born Garston, nr. Liverpool.

II. D. 5., , POPERINGHE NEW MILITARY CEMETERY, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium

5 CE 198  grave not traced Oct 2010.


BALLANTINE, J C John, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 4th Bn.  31/08/1916, 51511,


18 years.   of Wellington Road, Dingle.  Died of wounds (Evening Express)


BARLOW, GEORGE EDMUND, Ordinary Seaman, Royal Navy, H.M.S. Queen Mary., 18, 31/05/1916, J/31858, Son of Robert Nathan Barlow, of 69, Blythswood St., Liverpool.


26 CE 513 – the stone has been toppled at Oct 2010.         

Battle Cruiser, sunk at the Battle of Jutland.  The casualties were 57 officers and 1,209 men killed; 2 officers and 5 men wounded.


BENN, JOHN EDWIN, Civilian, 34, 12/03/1941, B E M, Station Officer, Stretford and Urmston Joint Fire Brigade. Son of John and Lydia A. Benn, of 36 Wingate Road, Liverpool; husband of Lily Benn, of 27 Lascelles Road. Died at 240 Park Road.

STRETFORD, MUNICIPAL BOROUGH [Civilian authority notifying CWGC]


His brother, TA Benn also died on police duty but is not among CWGC listing: 11 NC 314

BOWE, STANLEY GORDON, Lieutenant, Lancashire Fusiliers, 18th Bn. attd. 2nd/5th Bn., 33, 15/05/1918, Son of Thomas and Alice Bowe, of Liverpool.

I. E. 18., PERNES BRITISH CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France  ^

14 CE 231


BOYLE, W J, Private, Cheshire Regiment, 16th Bn., 01/01/1917, 22134


26 CE 333       


BROWN, EDWARD, Able Seaman, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, H.M.S. Glorious., 23, 08/06/1940, D/MD/X 2790, Son of Edward and Martha Brown, of Garston. Liverpool.


26 CE 174       

On the afternoon of Saturday the eighth of June, 1940, the aircraft carrier HMS Glorious and her escorting destroyers HMS Acasta and HMS Ardent were intercepted in the Norwegian Sea by the German battlecruisers Gneisenau and Scharnhorst. The three British ships were sunk by gunfire in a little over two hours, with the loss of over 1500 officers and men of the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, and Royal Air Force.”  []


CAIN, ANNIE, Civilian War Dead, 38, 04/05/1941, of 4 Swanside Avenue, Roby. Wife of William Cain. Died at 4 Swanside Avenue.


CAIN, BARBARA JOYCE, Civilian War Dead, 2, 04/05/1941, of 4 Swanside Avenue, Roby. Daughter of William Cain, and of Annie Cain. Died at 4 Swanside Avenue.

HUYTON-WITH-ROBY, URBAN DISTRICT [the local authority which notified CWGC of the casualties]

26 CE 93 for both the above entries, victims of the Blitz.  See also Evans, H.

CULLEN, PATRICK, Boatswain (Bosun), Merchant Navy, M.V. King Malcolm (London), 38, 31/10/1941, Husband of Dorothy Cullen, of Garston, Liverpool.


The ship was torpedoed and sunk in the North Atlantic  She was part of a slow convoy SC50 from Sydney, Cape Breton, bound for Garston but straggled and lost touch with the convoy.

22 CE ??       

CURRAN, THOMAS, Craftsman, Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, 10 Armoured. Troops Workshops, 32, 13/10/1943, 7645146, Son of Thomas and Matilda Curran, of Liverpool; husband of Florence Curran, of Liverpool.

Panel I. D. 2.  BONE WAR CEMETERY, ANNABA, Algeria       

DAVIES, JOHN ISAAC, Trooper, Royal Tank Regiment, R.A.C., 'C' Sqn., 1st, 23, 25/07/1944, 7897023, Son of Robert Morris Davies, and of Bridget Davies, of Liverpool.

Panel 8, Column 3. BAYEUX MEMORIAL, France       

DAVIES, WALTER, Second Lieutenant, King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), 9th Bn., 34, 19/09/1918, Husband of Irene Davies, of 73, Woolton Rd., Garston, Liverpool.


ALLERTON CEMETERY: Referred to on 22 CE 560, ‘killed in action’.        ###


DUNCAN, PETER, Boatswain (Bosun), Mercantile Marine, S.S. "Ledbury" (London), 33, 26/03/1917, Son of Charles Duncan, and the late Ann Duncan; husband of Hannah Duncan (nee Byrne), of 3, Whitehedge Rd., Grassendale, Liverpool. Born at Shetland.


Pvt mem at Allerton.  

Ledbury, a ship of the Houlder Line, was torpedoed and sunk in the Mediterranean with the loss of three lives.


EDGAR, FRANK MAXWELL, Serjeant, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 1st/10th Bn. (Scottish), 27, 09/08/1916, 1551, Son of John Dixon Edgar and Henrietta Edgar, of Liverpool; husband of Ida May Edgar, of Liverpool.

Pier and Face 1 D 8 B and 8 C., THIEPVAL MEMORIAL to the Missing, Somme, France.  ^


kia.  The date of death indicates that he fell in the Battle of Guillemont, confirmed by the memorial inscription.       

EDWARDS, THOMAS, Pilot Officer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, 76 Sqdn., 30/03/1943, 142008

Panel 131., [The Air Forces] RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL, Surrey

26 CE 103       

Bomber Command, flying Halifax bombers.  The squadron was under Wing Commander Leonard Cheshire’s command at that date.


ELLIS, WILLIAM, Private, East Lancashire Regiment, 2nd Bn., 35, 31/07/1917, 235179

Son of Catherine Ellis, of 15, Solon St., Edge Hill, Liverpool, and the late Philip Ellis; husband of Margaret Ellis, of 19, Aigburth Rd., Lark Lane, Liverpool.

Panel 34. YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Belgium       

EVANS, HERBERT, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 1st/9th Bn., 22/09/1917, 331680

Panel 31 to 34 and 162 and 162A and 163A., TYNE COT MEMORIAL

26.CE 93  see also Cain       

FAIRCLOUGH, JOHN, , Able Seaman, Royal Navy, (RFR/CH/B/10324). H.M.S. "Cressy.", 30, 22/09/1914, 203995, Son of Thomas and Sarah Fairclough, of 20, Bearton Rd., Hitchin, Herts. Native of Mossley Hill, Liverpool.


Mem at Allerton.  

Cressy was one of three British cruisers lost in battle in the North Sea on 22 September 1914 with great loss of life.  See note at end.


FORREST, ACHESON HILL, Third Engineer, Mercantile Marine, S.S. "Merton Hall" (Liverpool), 25, 11/02/1918, Son of James Watson Forrest, of 14, Admiral St., Liverpool. Born at Liverpool.


12 CE 45.       

Ellerman Hall Line: ex- Knight Templar, 1903 purchased from Greenshields, Cowie & Co, Liverpool renamed Merton Hall, 1918 torpedoed and sunk by U.53 off Ushant; loss of 57 lives.


FOSTER, ERIC CHARLES, New Zealand, Bombardier, New Zealand Field Artillery, 2nd Bty. 2nd Bde., 29, 18/09/1918, 11/2096, Son of Mary Foster, of "Holmeside," Mossley Hill, Liverpool, England, and the late Thomas Foster. Native of Woolton, Liverpool, England.


4 NC 271 [stone laid flat at Oct 3020]. Stone shows ‘Eighth Son…’

FOSTER, H   Harry, Assistant Steward, Mercantile Marine, S.S. "Hollington" (London), 16, 02/06/1917, Son of Mrs. Sarah Foster, of 9, Green's Cottages, Aigburth Vale, Liverpool.


Remembered at Allerton on brothers’ headstone.               

FOSTER, T, Private, Irish Guards, 2nd Bn., 27/06/1917, 10205,


Bapt at St Anne’s 4/3/1888.  remembered on family memorial at Allerton Cemetery.

FOWLER, CECIL JAMES, Private, Gordon Highlanders, 8th/10th Bn., 35, 28/06/1916, S/1604, Son of the late James and Annie Fowler.

Panel 115 to 119., LOOS MEMORIAL to the Missing , Pas de Calais, France  ^

14 CE 13       

GEORGE, F W  Frederick William, Carpenter's Mate, Mercantile Marine, S.S. "Zent" , (Belfast), 05/04/1916,


Zent was torpedoed and sunk 28 miles off Fastnet; 49 lives were lost.

22 CE ??       

GIBB, ROBERT ATKIN, Lance Corporal, Royal Fusiliers, 24th Bn., 36, 25/08/1918, G/73129, Son of Alexander and Sara Gibb, of 171, Union Grove, Aberdeen.

Panel 3.  VIS-EN-ARTOIS MEMORIAL, Pas de Calais, France

Comm. At Allerton see below       

Liverpool link: Pre-war, Alexander Gibb kept a pub in Dale Street, Liverpool.  His wife died in 1914, and after the war he lived in Aberdeen.


GIBB, W    William, Corporal, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 1st/10th Bn. (Liverpool Scottish), 29, 16/04/1918, 355815, Son of Alexander and Sarah Crooks Gibb, of 171. Union Grove, Aberdeen. Native of Edinburgh.


Comm. at Allerton with brother see above       

GORDON, JOHN STUART, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment)  , 17th Bn.  [Pals], 23, 22/01/1916, 15805, Son of John and Rachel Gordon, of 142, Windsor St., Toxteth, Liverpool.


commem at Allerton       

HAM, ALFRED ARTHUR, Chief Steward, Mercantile Marine, S.S. "Reventazon" (Manchester), 28, 05/10/1918, Son of Alfred John and Kate Hannah Ham, of 15, Selborne St., Liverpool.


Remembered at Allerton: 22 CE 16 with brother, Walter, d. 1918, who appears not to have been a war casualty.       

The ship was torpedoed and sunk in the Gulf of Salonika; 15 lives were lost.


HAMILTON, J, [Joseph], Private, Devonshire Regiment, 1st/5th Bn., 20/07/1918, 67514,

I. I. 14., MARFAUX BRITISH CEMETERY, Marne, France   ^

Date of death on family stone is 19/07/1918, but none found in CWGC to match; the CWGC entry shows the date of death as 20th. The name and unit agree with an entry on the Liverpool Town Hall Roll of Honour.       

HAROLD, HERBERT JAMES, Lance Serjeant, Royal Horse Artillery, 11 (Honourable , Artillery Coy.) Regt., 39, 24/01/1942, 1052600, Son of Frederick and Charlotte Harold; husband of Sarah Harold, of Liverpool.

Column 13.  ALAMEIN MEMORIAL to the Missing,  Egypt

errors on mem at Allerton – no. & regt differ.       

HAYES, JOHN, Sapper, Royal Engineers, 104th Field Coy., 33, 12/04/1918, 498531, Son of Charles and Margaret Hayes, of Liverpool; husband of Alice Maud Hayes, of 27, Gladstone Rd., Edge Hill, Liverpool.

X. B. 10A., WIMEREUX COMMUNAL CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France

19.CE ?   ^       

HODSON, FRED, Stoker 1st Class, Royal Navy, (RFR/CH/B/8341). H.M.S. Mignonette, 17/03/1917, 294199.


19 CE 473       

Hodgson is the spelling on the family memorial, but the Naval History website and CWGC entry spell it as Hodson.  A Naval record form shows he joined for 12 years as Hodson in 1900, born in 1880, went on to Royal Fleet Reserve in 1912; recalled August 1914. ref:ADM/188/475.  The birth of a Fred Hodgson was registered in the June qr, 1880, in the West Derby Regn District, but no Fred Hodson.  This may have been a clerical error when he joined the Navy, and never corrected.

This Arabis class sloop was mined and sank off Galley Head, Co Cork. (Claimed by U-boat, whose mines may have been the cause.)


HOWELL, ARTHUR EDWARD, Able Seaman, Royal Navy, 32, 21/05/1944, C/JX 266642, Son of Joseph and Anne Howell; husband of Hilda Howell, of Liverpool.


19 CE ??       

JOHNSTONE, ALEXANDER THOMSON, Chief Engineer Officer, Merchant Navy, S.S. Empire Endurance (Middlesbrough), 55, 03/05/1941, Mentioned in Despatches

Son of Walter and Adaline Sime Thomson Johnstone, of Bootle, Lancashire. 1914-1918 War.

Panel 40., TOWER HILL MEMORIAL, Trinity Square Gardens, London

Memorial at Allerton: 1 NC 12.               

Steam passenger/ cargo ship sunk on 20 April 1941 by torpedoes fired by German submarine U-73 at position 53° 05’ N 23° 14’ W.


JOYCE, ALLAN BROWNING, Gunner, Royal Artillery, 88 Field Regt., 23, 12/09/1944, 900180,

Column 22. SINGAPORE MEMORIAL Malaysia

Mem at Allerton states killed in action 12 September 1944 while POW in a Japanese prison ship.


KEOWN, WILLIAM ALEXANDER, Stoker 2nd Class, Royal Navy, H.M.S. Hebe, 18, 22/11/1943, D/KX 525446, Son of William Alexander Keown and Winifred Alexandra Keown, of Liverpool.

Panel 82, Column 3. PLYMOUTH NAVAL MEMORIAL.       

Hebe was a Halcyon class minesweeper built in 1936 and was sunk off Bari by a mine. 36 lives lost.

KIRKHAM, WILLIAM HENRY, Leading Stoker, Royal Naval Reserve, H.M.S. Lion", 35, 31/05/1916, 1973U, Son of John and Alice Kirkham, of Liverpool; husband of Hannah Kirkham, of 16, Hurry St., Dingle, Liverpool.


referred to at ALLERTON CEMETERY 2F CE 427 [ stone toppled at Oct 2010] – see next entry

Lion was a battle-cruiser, heavily damaged at the Battle of Jutland, one of the principal naval engagements in WW1.


KIRKHAM, FREDERICK, Gunner, Royal Horse Artillery, 13 (Honourable Artillery Coy.) Regt., 34, 18/07/1944, 1106990, Son of William Henry and Hannah Kirkham, of Liverpool.

XIV. C. 7.  BAYEUX WAR CEMETERY, Calvados, France.    see previous entry       

Pvt 2F CE 427

 the son of the above entry, kia at Caen.


LAWRENSON, GEORGE HERBERT, Pilot Officer, Royal Air Force, 110 Sqdn., 25, 23/04/1943, 51017, Son of George and Margaret Ann Lawrenson, of Mossley Hill, Liverpool.

Grave no. 1. F. 1. RANCHI WAR CEMETERY, India.       

110 Squadron served in India from early 1942, at first in Blenheim bombers, and then in American Vultee Vengeance dive-bombers for the Burma campaign.


LEGGATE, ARCHIBALD THOMAS, Surgeon Lieutenant, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, H.M.S. Registan., 30, 28/05/1941, M.B., Ch.B.

Panel 50, 1. CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL               

The merchant ship was requisitioned as an Ocean Boarding vessel and while on convoy escort duty was heavily bombed off Cape Cornwall [near Land’s End] and set on fire.  63 lives were lost; 27 unidentified bodies were buried at Falmouth.  After repairs, the ship was returned to merchant service but was sunk by torpedo in 1942.


LEWIS, SAMUEL, Lance Corporal, Reconnaissance Corps, R.A.C., 5th (3rd Bn. The Tower Hamlets Rifles) Regt., 32, 20/04/1945, 6919064, Son of J. T. and Edith Lewis, and stepson of W. C. Sawyer, of Liverpool.

18. A. 3.  BECKLINGEN WAR CEMETERY  Germany               

Killed in action.       

LOUGHRAN, HAROLD AUSTIN, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 20th Bn.  [Pals], 29, 08/09/1917, 38824, Son of Elizabeth Loughran, of 5, Durning Rd., Edge Hill, Liverpool.

E. 8. TORREKEN FARM CEMETERY No.1, Heuvelland, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium

22 CE ??               

McGIVERN, PETER, Lance Corporal, Durham Light Infantry, 2nd Bn., 04/05/1944, 3775369, Husband of Jane McGivern, of Liverpool.

Face 17., RANGOON MEMORIAL  Myanmar (Burma)

20 RC ??6


MARRIOTT, ARTHUR SPYZER, Civilian, 35, 12/03/1941, of 50 Lancaster Avenue. Son of Arthur and Edith Annie Marriott, of 43 Geneva Road; husband of Jenny Marriott. Died at 50 Lancaster Avenue.

WALLASEY, COUNTY BOROUGH : civilian authority notifying CWGC.

Mentioned as ‘Captain’ at Allerton Cemetery, 2E CE 316.  

No military or naval link traced.  Lancaster Avenue, Wallasey was heavily bombed with loss of lives.


MITCHELL, JOSEPH HAROLD, Private, Lancashire Fusiliers, 11th Bn., 19, 28/05/1918, 48634, Son of Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell, of 41, Knight St., Berry St., Liverpool.

SOISSONS MEMORIAL to the Missing, Aisne, France

31 CE??               

Also his brother Alexander, died from the effects of war, 30th April 1924, aged 38 years.


MORGAN, KENNETH , 12, BERNARD, 10, GWENNETH, 5 and RALPH, 2, died on 18 November 1940 when a bomb fell on 5 Wingate Road, Aigburth.


CWGC records civilian deaths separately from those of the armed services, and omits the place of burial, stating only the local authority which notified the death.  Many of the Liverpool blitz-related burials were carried out at a mass grave at Anfield Cemetery, but the Morgan children were buried at Allerton in a grave which was unmarked until discovered by family members who arranged the headstone.


MOSS, PETER FREDERICK, Private, Royal Army Service Corps, 648th M.T. Coy.32, 18/12/1918, M2/139481, Son of Peter and Clara Moss, of 4, Cressington Park, Aigburth, Liverpool.

A. 2.  PEMBA CEMETERY, Mozambique

Commem on brother’s grave at Allerton               

MUIR, SAMUEL WALKER, Private, Royal Scots Fusiliers, 2nd Bn., 30/04/1918, 47567, Son of Samuel Walker Muir; husband of Elizabeth Jane Gray Maitland (formerly Muir), of "Kelburn," Templemore Avenue, Mossley Hill, Liverpool.

Panel 60 to 61. , TYNE COT MEMORIAL to the Missing, Zonnebeke, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium

19 CE 575       


OFFLANDS, WILLIAM, Corporal, The King's Regiment (Liverpool), 1st Bn., 25, 20/05/1944, 3774338, Son of William and Hannah Offlands, of Liverpool.

Face 5. RANGOON MEMORIAL, Burma               

PHILLIPS, WALTER RALEIGH, Civilian War Dead, 35, 02/05/1941, Firewatcher. Son of Sarah Phillips, of 305 Upper Parliament Street, and of the late Thomas Charles Phillips. Died at New Bird Street.

LIVERPOOL COUNTY BOROUGH (the reporting authority for civilian casualties)

19 CE ??

This was at the start of the intense blitz on Liverpool.  An HE bomb fell on a meat factory at New Bird Street, between St James Street and the Dock Road, close to Parliament Street.


REAY, THOMAS STANLEY, Lieutenant, Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry, 3rd Bn. attd. 10th Bn., 24, 01/03/1918, Son of Thomas and Elizabeth T. Reay, of 18, Cumberland Avenue, Sefton Park, Liverpool.


5. CE ??               

RIMMER, GEORGE FREDERIC  ‘Eric’, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 1st/10th Bn.  (Liverpool Scottish), 21, 16/06/1915 , 3128, Son of Henry and Fanny Rimmer, of 52, Wembley Rd., Mossley Hill, Liverpool.

Panel 4 and 6, YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL       

kia at Hooge, commem at Allerton with brother, see below.  

Named as Eric at Allerton

[A Frederick Rimmer of the same regiment, from Aintree, was killed on the same day.]


RIMMER, H J   Harry, Private, City of London Yeomanry (Rough Riders), 22/09/1915  2438,

I. A. 14.  GREEN HILL CEMETERY, Turkey  Heading North from Anzac, you will encounter the cemetery after 17.6 kms. on the right, adjacent to the track. Green Hill and Chocolate Hill (which form together Yilghin Burnu) are adjoining eminences, about 52 metres above sea level, which rise almost from the eastern shore of the Salt Lake. The cemetery lies on the east side of the Anzac-Suvla Road.

kia at Gallipoli, commem at Allerton, with brother, see above.          ^


SAVAGE, WILLIAM GEORGE, Assistant Steward, Merchant Navy, S.S. Empress of Canada London), 40, 14/03/1943, Son of William and Ellen Savage; husband of Dorothy Savage, of Liverpool.

Panel 48., TOWER HILL MEMORIAL, Trinity Square Gardens, London

26 CE 497  memorial states ‘died at sea’.       

On the 1st March 1943 she sailed from Durban with 1,800 passengers, amongst their number 200 Poles released by Russia after the German invasion, over 200 Royal Navy Personnel and some 400 Italian Prisoners of war. Because of the circumstances the Italians were locked up only during the evening, in the forward hold. The speed of the Empress allowed her to sail out of convey and she duly sailed South for the Antarctic, swung round the Island of Tristan Da Cunha before turning on a Northbound heading. On the 12th March she was ordered to stop and pick up another 300 Italian Prisoners of War at Takoradi, Ghana. Having sailed immediately after loading she again proceeded Northbound but at 2345 hours 13th March some one thousand miles off the coast of Africa she was torpedoed, ironically by the Italian submarine Leonardo Da Vinci. Some thirteen hours later whilst the ship was still being abandoned the submarine struck again and within twenty five minutes the Empress sank taking 392 people with her. Those lost were 44 crew, 8 gunners and half of the Italian Prisoners of war.  [from:]


SEAFIELD, THOMAS ALEXANDER, Civilian War Dead, 39, 29/11/1940, of 25 Femwood Road. Son of Mr. F. A. Seafield, of 3 Chermside Road; husband of Edith Seafield. Died at 25 Femwood Road.

LIVERPOOL, COUNTY BOROUGHthe local authority reporting civilian deaths to CWGC.

5 CE ??

The same bomb accounted for Mr Seafield’s wife Edith, 37, and sons Thomas Albert, 14, John Alexander, 13 and Francis Brian, 11.  There were other deaths in the area.


SIDDORN, FRANK, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 25th Bn., 31, 05/09/1918, 381550, Son of Eliza Siddorn, of 66, Gorsedale Rd., Mossley Hill, Liverpool, and the late Albert Siddorn.

Panel 27 to 30., LOOS MEMORIAL to the Missing, Pas de Calais, France

15 CE 333         

The 25th Battalion had been 43rd, with Home Service Territorials, but was formed in 1915.  In May 1918 it landed in France, and became part of 176th Brigade in 59th Division.


STOCKWELL, ARTHUR Ernest, Private, Coldstream Guards, 3rd Bn., 13/04/1918, 22409.

Panel 1, PLOEGSTEERT MEMORIAL to the Missing, Comines-Warneton, Hainaut, Belgium  ^

At first not identified on CWGC data; but found, with own and brother’s details of regiment in Town Hall Roll of Honour.

STOCKWELL, W S   William Samuel, Private, Welsh Regiment, 18th Bn., 25/11/1917, 290959,

VIII. B. 10., GREVILLERS BRITISH CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France  ^

Commem at Allerton with brother see above.


THRELKELD, T W   Thomas, Private, Border Regiment, 2nd Bn., 37, 22/02/1916, 22311,

Son of William and Annie Threlkeld, of Liverpool; husband of Mary Threlkeld, of 148, Wellington Rd., Liverpool. Born at Carlisle.


Commem at Allerton               

TINNE, ERNEST PERCY JAMES, Lieutenant, Royal Naval Reserve, H.M.S. "Hogue.", 22/09/1914.


Commem on pvt grave at Allerton       

Also at  St Anne’s, Aigburth, Cunard SS Co. mem at St Nicholas, Liverpool.   See note at end on naval losses on this date.


UNWIN, REGINALD MARSHALL, Lance Corporal, Irish Guards, 2nd Bn., 22, 21/04/1945, 2723386

4. B. 10., , BECKLINGEN WAR CEMETERY, Soltau, Niedersachsen, Germany

26 CE 390.  The stone has been toppled at Oct. 2010.       

Burials were brought into the cemetery from isolated sites in the countryside, small German cemeteries and prisoner of war camps cemeteries… within a radius of about 80 kilometres. Most of those buried in the cemetery died during the last two months of the war.” [CWGC]  

This may account for the inscription on the Allerton memorial which states ‘buried at Elsdorf’.

[The text of the M.I. needed some deciphering to obtain the surname of this casualty]


WALSH, CORNELIUS, Private, South Lancashire Regiment, 1st Bn., 31, 20/05/1940, 3650251


Noted on All Cem website as commem on Ratcliffe VC stone, but name not shown  on recent photo.


WARD, DANIEL, Stoker 1st Class, Royal Navy, H.M.S. Punjabi, 31, 01/05/1942, D/KX 95525, Son of Christina Ward, of Liverpool.


 ‘Lost at sea’ on pvt memorial – 2G CE 405               

On 1 May, she was rammed and sunk in a collision with King George V in foggy conditions off the west coast of Ireland.   Punjabi was sliced in two by the battleship's bow. 169 of the ship’s company were rescued from the forward section, and another 40 were picked up from the sea by other escorts. Those crew left in the aft section — which sank very quickly — were killed when her depth charges were detonated. 49 of her crew lost their lives in the accident.  [based on Wikipedia]


WESLEY, MATTHEW, Sapper, Royal Engineers, 101st Field Coy., 10/07/1916, 89998,  

Pier and Face 8 A and 8 D., THIEPVAL MEMORIAL to the Missing, Somme, France.

8 NC 1340


WHITE, FREDERICK ANTHONY, Second Officer, Merchant Navy, M.V. Mary Slessor Liverpool), 30, 07/02/1943, Son of Frederick and Ellen White, of Liverpool.


10 RC 142               

The vessel was owned by Elder Dempster and sank after hitting a mine.  She was named after a Church of Scotland missionary who worked in Africa for many years.


WHITTLE, THOMAS, Private, The King's (Liverpool Regiment), 1st/10th Bn. (Liverpool Scottish), 24, 16/06/1915, 3957, Son of William and Mary Whittle, of 10, Elmswood Rd., Aigburth, Liverpool.

Panel 4 and 6., YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL  ^

Remembered at ALLERTON CEMETERY 2E CE 311 [stone strapped to support at Oct 2010]       

WICKHAM, WILLIAM ATHERLEY, Cook, Merchant Navy, S.S. Sithonia (London), 19, 12/07/1942, Son of Nathaniel Wickham, and of Elizabeth Wickham, of Liverpool.

Panel 98. TOWER HILL MEMORIAL               

Sithonia was bound from Belfast for Montevideo in convoy OS33 carrying coal when torpedoed 380 miles west of the Canaries.  7 of the crew of 54 were lost.


WIGNALL, GEORGE, Private, Cameronians (Scottish Rifles), 1st/8th Bn., 20/10/1917, 40014, Son of William and Anna Wignall, of 67, Canterbury St., Garston, Liverpool.


Commem at Allerton

[Jack Williams: two possibles, initial J, died on this day: one RWF, one RGA.]


WILLIAMS, REGINALD, Private, Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment), 2nd/5th Bn., 23, 16/04/1918, 260078, Son of Richard and Ellen Williams, of 5, Carno St., Liverpool.


8 NC ??

WILLIAMS, WILLIAM HAROLD TRANT, Second Lieutenant, Royal Flying Corps, 29th Sqdn., 19, 22/08/1917, Son of Dr. and Mrs. W. G. Williams, of 5, Dingle Hill, Liverpool.

III. C. 1.  HARLEBEKE NEW BRITISH CEMETERY, Comines-Warneton, Hainaut, Belgium  ^

Commem at Allerton               

William Harold Trant Williams of 5 Dingle Hill, Liverpool, wanted to be a doctor, like his father, and had just begun his second year of an MB course at The University of Liverpool when he volunteered to fight for King and Country. After pilot training, he was awarded his 'Wings' in the early summer of 1917 and built up his flying hours with 28 Squadron in England before being set to 29 Squadron at the Front. Returning from an operation on 14 August, he executed a poor landing and, in the process, crashed and completely wrecked his aircraft. His good fortune in walking away from the crash unhurt ended abruptly barely two days later when he fell under the guns of von Richthofen. Picked out of the wreckage by German troops, he was carried to a nearby Military Hospital but his wounds were extremely severe and he died six days later on 22 August 1917. He was 19.

Quoted on ‘Student Victims of the Great War website – Univ of Liverpool – citing ‘Under the Guns of the Red Baron’. Norman Franks, Hal Giblin and Nigel McCrery. Grub Street Publications.





Part 4



The Distinguished Conduct Medal was awarded for individual acts of gallantry in the Army, and was considered second only to the Victoria Cross.


GALLAGHER, George, 5691, RAMC, DCM

Citation for award of Distinguished Conduct Medal:



London Gazette Supplement dated 15 Sept 1915, page 9174

The award of his Military Medal, without citation, was in the London Gazette Supplement dated 14 May 1919, when his rank was given as Corporal/ Acting Sergeant.  16th Field Ambulance, RAMC served in 6th Division through the War.  Died in Liverpool 1923and buried at Allerton - after CWGC cut-off date.  Photo on file.
















Part 5

The present day


SMITH, , MICHAEL, WO2, 7 (Sphinx) Battery, 29 Commando Regt. R.A., 24714498, 39.

KIA in Afghanistan 8/3/2007, 39

Mentioned in Dispatches for gallant and distinguished services in Afghanistan [London Gazette 19/07/2010, Supp. No. 1]. He had almost 22 years service in the army and died from wounds after a grenade was thrown into the headquarters in Helmand province.

5 CE ??

HORNBY, SIMON, Corporal, The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, dow 19/12/2009 in Afghanistan, 29.

From Halewood.   Funeral was held at Liverpool Cathedral

11 CE ?? [verge by main driveway]

LANGTON, JOHN, Sgt., 120 Squadron, Royal Air Force,29,  d. 2/9/06 when a Nimrod MR2 aircraft crashed in Afghanistan with the loss of 12 crew members.  Son of Joe and Margaret Langton of Grassendale

Grave details not yet traced

DUNN-BRIDGEMAN, Jason, Private, 2nd Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, 20, died of wounds 13/9/2009 in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.  From Roby.

Former Army Cadet RSM.

Grave details not yet traced


Query on war death???

12 NC 357   This private stone names William R. Bibby (R.N.), died 10/10/1942.  The nearest CWGC entry is as follows, but the dates do not agree, and there is no evidence of a local link on the official records.

[BIBBY, WILLIAM, Able Seaman, Royal Navy, H.M.S. Sultan, 24, 16/02/1942, D/JX 191946

Panel 101. Column 1., PLYMOUTH NAVAL MEMORIAL]

HMS Sultan was the Naval base at Singapore from 1940 until abandoned after the fall of Singapore in February 1942.  



???Query on war death???

CLARK, GILBERT EDMUND ‘lost at sea 11th November 1917’, on Clark family memorial at 5 CE ??.   Son of William and Anne Clark.   Not found in CWGC register or FREEBMD, naval history, Town Hall Roll.  Aged 54.

Probate granted 28 Jan 1918, confirming date of death ‘at sea’ and giving occupation as ‘marine engineer’.

Info from LFHS Forum:  In 1881 they are in Toxteth Park and Gilbert is an apprentice engine fitter. He married Annie Holgate at St Peter's Liverpool in 1890.
Suggested vessels sunk that day: ss Basil, Booth Line of Liverpool: sunk in collision in English Channel carrying ammunition Southampton/Boulogne, 13 lives lost.

Ss Dana (Swedish), torpedoed in North Sea

Ss Lapwing, mined & sank 9 m. SE of Southwold.

In the 1911 census GEC was not present at the family home in 3 Stalbridge Avenue [off Greenbank Road], where his wife Annie (42) was the head, with two daughters aged 15 and 13 (at school) and son Gilbert Holgate aged 6, also at school.  Annie’s mother and sister were also in residence.


Clark’s son followed him into the Merchant Navy and was awarded the MBE in the King’s Birthday Honours, June 1944, as a Master.  The following is an extract from a website:

“April.1957 The following awards, for rescuing the crew of the BANNPRINCE, were made to members of the M.V. OCEAN COAST:- Captain Gilbert Holgate Clark, M.B.E., awarded a Silver Cigarette Box…”



Several Greek sailors are commemorated in 11.NC, with CWGC-style stones and inscriptions in Greek.



Additional Notes


HMS Aboukir, along with HMS Cressy and HMS Hogue, were all torpedoed by the German U-boat U9 on 22nd September 1914. Cruiser Force C (Cressy, Aboukir and Hogue) was on patrol in the Broad Fourteens on 22nd September 1914. The purpose of the patrol was to protect the Belgian coast and seaway from submarine action. An admiral should have been attached to the patrol on HMS Euryalus, but due to problems with his ship’s radio, he sailed home. The poor weather also caused the destroyer escort to return to port.

Aboukir was struck port side at bulkhead 69 by German Navy's Lt Otto Weddigen, U-9. Aboukir’s Captain Drummond ordered Cressy and Hogue to assist. With his five remaining torpedoes, Weddigen sank them both. Three cruisers and 1459 men were lost in the space of an hour and a half. This incident established the U-boat as a major weapon in the conduct of naval warfare.

From Wartime Memories Project website



The Battle of Colenso

Colonel Long had in 1898 commanded the artillery at Omdurman, achieving acclaim for taking his guns to the front and bombarding the Mahdi’s dervishes to great effect. Long had already demonstrated his lack of judgment in South Africa by sending the armoured train forward from Chieveley unsupported and into country occupied by the Boers, causing the loss of part of the train, which was derailed by the Boers, and the capture of a party of Durham Light Infantry and the correspondent Winston Churchill.

Long now repeated his Omdurman tactic, taking the guns of his two Royal Field Artillery batteries forward of the infantry advance into the open ground leading to the Tugela, where they were ambushed by a storm of Boer rifle and gun fire from across the river. Long and many of his officers and gunners immediately became casualties; the guns in the open ground under heavy fire. The Royal Navy 12 pounders were further to the rear, largely out of danger.

The strategic aim of pushing across the Tugela and relieving Ladysmith now had to be abandoned for the immediate crisis of retrieving Long’s stranded guns.



The attempt to rescue the guns


As Corporal Nurse of the Royal Field Artillery prepared to take two teams of horses forward to recover some of the guns General Buller invited officers of the staff to assist the gunners in recovering the guns. Major Prince Christian Victor, Queen Victoria’s grandson, Captain Schofield, Captain Congreve and Captain Roberts, Lord Robert’s only son took up the invitation. The four officers with the two teams of horses and limbers galloped over the open ground to the guns under a storm of fire. Christian Victor, Congreve and Roberts were all wounded and brought to the ground. Schofield, Nurse and the gunners hooked up two guns and brought them out.

All further attempts to recover the remaining ten guns failed. The Queen’s and Devons of Hildyard’s brigade, moving forward in open order, reached Colenso itself and took cover, suffering few casualties and showing what might be achieved if suitable field formations were adopted. But the guns were too exposed to reach.



The Death of Lieutenant Freddie Roberts VC, killed trying to recover the guns


Towards the end of the day it became clear that Dundonald could make no headway against the Boer positions on Hlangwane and fell back, leaving the British centre exposed to a Boer flank attack. Buller, ever an officer with a shrewd finger on the pulse of his soldiers, concluded that his infantry were close to collapse. The raging heat of the day and endless exposure to heavy rifle fire and their battlefield inexperience was proving too much. Buller ordered a general withdrawal. Even then Buller and his staff had to root many soldiers out of the positions of safety in which they had gone to ground and make them fall back.


• Lieutenant Roberts died of his wounds. His father, Lord Roberts, was overcome by grief at the loss of his only child. On his arrival in South Africa he came near to collapse as he heard from Captain Schofield an account of the battle.
• Victoria Crosses were awarded to Captain Congreve, Lieutenant Roberts, Captain Reed of 7th Battery, Royal Field Artillery who made the second attempt to retrieve the guns and Corporal Nurse, the initiator of the first successful attempt. Thirteen Royal Field Artillery soldiers of the 66th and 7th Batteries were awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

[from ‘British Battles’ website




Principal sources include:




ALLERTON CEMETERY WEBSITE:  an unofficial site with much useful information

This site run by Jeff Jones includes some transcriptions from headstones which helped in locating war-related commemorations, and notes on causes of death attached to CWGC data made by Eric Dermott-Powell [Australia], author of books on CWGC burials at Allerton & elsewhere.


NAVAL-HISTORY.NET  which provided causes of death for a number of Royal Navy personnel and information on ships.


THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES DOCUMENTS ONLINE:  Army and RAF campaign medal entitlements.


LONDON GAZETTE online:  data on gallantry awards and officers’ promotions etc.



NAVAL-HISTORY.NET 1998-2010 - archived by British Library & U.S. Library of Congress

working with National Maritime Museum & Citizen Science Alliance/University of Oxford







Staff at the Cemeteries Office, Allerton.