MODERN SCHOOL - WW1 Memorial
World War 1 & 2 - Roll of Honour with detailed information
Compiled and copyright © 2001 Martin Edwards
With grateful thanks to Bedford Modern School
allowing the reproduction of various photographs and articles from the Eagle,
the research information supplied by Richard Wildman, the Archivist and many
FIRST WORLD WAR
tablets containing 167 incised names originally unveiled 1923. Location: Under
covered area between Kaye and Liddle Quads.
The Eagle Millennium published by BMS.
Throughout hostilities The
Eagle contained communications from Old Boys ín the various theatres of war and
published regular lists of casualties and awards. In every issue the Roll of Honour
provided a biography of each OBM killed. which included his war service and achievements
In all, 167 OBMs died on active service just under 14% of those who joined up.
The oldest casualty was Lt Col Sir George Farrar. Bt. who had left in 1875.
the best known was Lt Col Edgar Mobbs. DSO. CO of the 7th Battalion of the Northamptonshire
Regiment. His charisma and leadership was transferred from the rugby field to
the battlefield and he was killed on 31 July 1917 at Zilleheke in the Battle of
Passchendaele. Immiedìately prior to his death he had met Lt Norman Spencer, a
fellow OBM. and in the heat of battle the pair had reminisced about rugby and
mutual acquaintances at school. Spencer witnessed Mobbs' heroic effort: ‘In the
tornado of hostile shelling he got ahead and seeing a number of his men cut down
by an undiscovered machine-gun strong-point, he charged to bomb it, certain death
under such a terrific hail of shell.’ Mobbs’ body was never found and he is severally
commemorated. on the list of the missing at the Menin Gate. on the school memorial
tablets, by a public memorial in Northampton, by the
and by the annual rugby fixture between Northampton and the Barbarians played
in his memory.
a strong feeling at the time that Mobbs deserved a VC for his action. Amongst
OBMs that honour belongs to Major George Wheeler who was awarded a posthumous
VC for his
At the end of the war
published a comprehensive list of decorations and amongst these were 32 DSO's
and 57 MC’s.
of staff, H E Crane, died of his wounds in October 1916. He taught
for a year before volunteering in April 1916, one of the last to do so before
in the leg and died in Lincoln Military Hospital soon afterwards."
STILL IN THE PROCESS OF BEING TRANSCRIBED AND RESEARCHED ***
names below are OBM's who died in WW1 that should be on the list of men who died.
1st Battalion (15th Foot), The East Yorkshire Regiment. Son of the
late Henry Campion, of Bletsoe Castle, near Bedford; born 9th August
1871, Dean Bedfordshire. Educated at Bedford Modern School. Gazetted
2nd Lieuteneant East Yorkshire Regiment from the Militia, 122th
December 1894, promoted to Lieutenant 1st APril 1897, Captain 10th
May 1900 and Major 16th April 1913. Served in South African (Boer
War) 1900-2 with the Mounted Infantry where he was slightly wounded.
Took part in operations in the Tansvaal in mAy and June, 1900, including
actions neat Johannesburg, Pretoria and Diamond Hill (11th and 12th
June) : Operation Wittebergen (1st to 29th July), Bothaville and
Caledon River (27th to 29th Nov): operations in Transvaal, west
of Pretoria, including action at Frederickstad : was in command
of the 5th Battalion, Mounted Infantry from February to March 1902
: took part in the operations in Orange River Colony and Cape Colony
30th November 1900 to March 1901 : operations in Orange River Colony
March to September 1901 and October 1901 to April 1902, and those
in Cape Colony September to October 1901 and April to 31st May 1902
(mentioned in Desptaches [London Gazette 10th September 1901 and
29th July 1902] : brevet of Major : Queen's Medal with four clasps
and King's Medal with two clasps); subsequently served in Burma,
India, and with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders :
was wounded 20th September 1914 but returned to the front, and was
subsequently killed in action near Lille, 28th October 1914. Age
43. Commemorated in Ration Farm Military Cemetery, La Chapelle-d'Armentieres,
Nord, France. Special Memorial VI. M. [Soldiers Died in the Great
War CD lists him as William Ernest CAMPION].
Assistant Quarter Master General to Centre Division of Union of
South Africa Forces. Active Citizen Force. Died of wounds 18-5-15,
age 56, motor trolley collided with a train at Knibis, near Gibeon,
German South West Africa, on 17-5-15. Third son (born 17-6-1859
at Chatteris) of the late Charles Farrar MD, of Chatteris, and Mrs
Helen Farrar, of Bedford. An engineer, he went to South Africa in
1879 and lived in the Transvaal. Founder and chairman of East Rand
Proprietary Mines Ltd. Took part in Jameson Raid of 1895 and sentenced
to death for treason by the Afrikaners, but remitted on payment
of £25,000 fine. Awarded DSO (London Gazette 19-4-01) for services
during Boer War. Knighted in 1902. MP for Georgetown in the first
parliament of Union of South Africa in 1910-11. Created Baronet
on 2-2-11. Married Ella Mabel Waylen on 3-6-1893, had six daughters.
Bedford Farm Cemetery, Gauteng, South Africa.
Andy Pay's research into the Marquis de Ruvigny' s Roll of Honour
1, Part 1, Page 129, FARRAR,
Sir George Herbert 1st Bart D.S.O. Colonel and assistant Q.M General
- Central Force, Union Defence Forces, late Hon. Col South African
Light Horse. Son of the late Charles Farrar, of Chatteris, co Cambridge,
M.D. , by his wife Helen, (The Crescent Lodge, Bedford) , sister
of Sir Frederick Howard and dau of John Howard. Born Chatteris 17-6-1859,
educated Bedford Modern School and on leaving there entered the
engineering business of his Uncle Sir Frederick Howard going in
1879 to South Africa to the Port Elizabeth and East London branches.
Eight years later he and his brothers established themsleves at
Johannesburg, where in a few years he became one of the leading
men in the mining industry of the Witwatersrand. His cheif enterprise
was the formation of the East Rand Proprietary Mines, of which he
was chairman from its inception to the day of his death. He was
for some time a member of the Legislative assembly of the Transvaal
and Leadre of the opposition. For his share in the Jameson raid
he was tried for treason and sentenced to death, but the sentence
was remitted on payment of a fine of £25000.
When the South African
war broke out he raised two Regiments of South African Horse, and
was appointed Major , Kaffrarian Rifles, 1-12-1900 and served in
this campaign as major on the staff of the Colonial Division 1899-1900.
He took part in the operations in the Orange Free State, including
the defence of Wepener, operations in the Transvaal, west of Pretoria,
aug to sep 1900, operations in the Orange River Colony 1900 including
actions at Wittebergen 1-29 July) and in Cape Colony, south of the
Orange River. His services were mentioned in despatches ( London
Gazette 16th April 1901 ) and he was awarded the Queens medal with
4 clasps and the D.S.O (1900).
After the conclusion
of peace in 1902 he took an active part in the work of re-organisation,
and when responsible government was granted to the Transvaal , he
was unanimously elected leader of the progressive party in the house
of assembly, in opposition to the inistry of General Botha. In 1903
he was elected president of the Witwatersrand Chamber of mines ,
and took a leading part in the negotiations which led up to formation
of The Union of South Africa.
He had been knighted
in 1902 and on 2-2-1911 was created a Baronet for his services on
this occasion.He was M.P. for Georgetown in the first parliament
of the Union of South Africa 1910-11 but in dec 1911 business demands
in connection with the east rand co compelled him to retire from
political work in order to devote his whole energies to the re-organisation
of that enterprise.
When the European war
broke out he was in England on a visit and was about to join General
Sir Hubert Hamiltons staff with the army in Belgium , but the day
before he was to have left he was ordered by the authorities to
South Africa. On arrival he was appointed to General McKenzies Force
with the rank of Colonel and was despatched to German South West
Africa as Assistant Q.M-General.
Proceeding to Luderitz
Bay in advance of the main force he was engaged in the organisation
of the base camp , and subsequently had charge of the restoration
of the railway and of providing the water supply to the force, an
operation of primary importance in that country.
On 19th May 1915, he
was returning from a tour of inspection when the motor trolley in
which he was travelling collided with a construction train at Kuibis
, near Gidson, German South West Africa, and Sir George succumbed
to his injuries early next morning.
Sir George Farrar was
one of the best known men in South Africa to whose advancement he
had, by legislative work, by attention to mining process, and to
practical sympathy with agricultural, powerfully contributed.
He married at Johannesburg
2-6-1893 , Ella Mabel ( Chicheley Hall, Newport Pagnell,Bucks &
Bedford Farm , near Johannesburg , Transvaal), dau of the late Charles
William Waylen, I.M.S. and had six daus , Helen Mabel b 2-10-1894,
Muriel Frances b 6-4-1896, Gwendeline b 14-7-1897, Georgina Marjorie
b 17-8-1901, Kathleen Elizabeth b 9-5-1907 and Ella Marguerite b
9th Battalion, London Regiment (Queen Victoria's Rifles). Killed
in action 21st April 1915 in France & Flanders. Age 41. Son
of Alfred and Rosa Matilda Lees, of Bedford. Commemorated on YPRES
(MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 54.
See also Bedford St Peters.
from The Bond of Sacrifice Volume 2 January to June 1915
THOMAS PRIOR LEES, 1/9th (COUNTY OF LONDON) BATTN. THE LONDON REGIMENT,
(QUEEN VICTORIA'S RIFLES) (T.F.), younger son of the late
Alfred Lees and Mrs. Lees, of Bedford, was born on the 3rd September,
1874, at the Old Priory, Bedford.
He was educated at Bedford Modern School, under the Rev. R. B. Poole,
P.D. He was head of the school, and proceeded to Clare College,
Cambridge, where he was eighth Senior Optime, and took the degree
of M.A. He then entered the Civil Service, and on mobilisation he
was Assistant Secretary, Civil Service Commission, Burlington Gardens,
London. He was fond of tennis, rowing, and music, and studied naval
and military history. He joined the Victoria and St. George's Rifles
in March, 1889, becoming Lieutenant in September, 1900; Captain
in March, 1905 ; and Major in August, 1913; and passed the Army
examinations for Field rank. He landed in France with his battalion
(now the Queen Victoria's Rifles) in November, 1914, proceeding
straight to the trenches, in which he remained, with the usual rest
periods, all through the winter. On the night of the 20th-21st April
the enemy took the trenches on the top of Hill 60. Major Lees organised
and led a night assault with rather more than 100 of his men, afterwards
reinforced to 150, drove the Germans out, found he was the senior
officer left alive on the hill, and proceeded to conduct the defence.
For some hours the enemy made repeated attempts to drive our men
out by heavy artillery and machine-gune (sic) fire, bombing and
infantry attacks, which were all repulsed. Between 4 and 5 a.m.
on the 21st the situation became critical. He left his trench and
crossed under a heavy fire to the trenches held by the Bedfordshire
Regiment, which the Germans were assaulting, and he was shot through
the head and heart while giving orders to hold on, only ten yards
from the enemy. He fell into the arms of a Sergeant of the Bedfords
and never spoke again. Lieutenant-Colonel R. B. Shipley, C.M.G.,
writes: “He died like a hero, having retaken and made good
a position of primary importance which the enemy were on the point
of reoccupying. His last gallant charge was as he would have wished
it—to the assistance of his county Regiment., the Bedford
Regiment. The last words I heard him speak as he led his company
off into the trenches were: Now, remember, if anyone is wounded,
the others must carry-on—not stop with him. If I am hit, go
on I ' It was his initiative and courageous behaviour that has enabled
us to hold on to the position. I cannot even attempt to tell you
what a stupendous loss this is to the Regiment and myself, but we
must console ourselves by remembering and trying to emulate your
brother's unswerving devotion to duty and the unflinching gallantry
shown by him in all times of stress. His life so earnestly devoted
to others will live in our memories for all time."
On the advanced detachment of the Queen Victoria's Rifles being
relieved after this action they were found to have lost over seventy-five
per cent, of their number killed mid wounded.
Picture courtesy & copyright BMS
Colonel, 7th Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment who was
killed in action in the battle of Passchendale on
Tuesday, 31st July 1917 charging an enemy machine-gun post.
Age 37. Born 1882. Son of Oliver L. and Elizabeth Anne Mobbs,
of Northampton. Former England International Rugby Football
player. Awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO). Commemorated
on Yres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.
Panel 43 and 45.
size (three-quarter) posthumous portrait by Barbara Chamier,
originally unveiled 1925 . Location: Corridor adjacent to
School Entrance Foyer. BMS 1892-98
'The Millennium Eagle' published by BMS.
has been ninety years since Edgar Mobbs played rugby for
England. At school he was regarded as the greatest sportsman
BMS ever produced and was a hero to every man and boy who
played, and loved the game, of rugby football. He had a
natural aptitude for the game, to which he added great technical
skill. Since he could run 100 yards in a little over 10
seconds, it was not surprising that he became a wing three-quarter
1904 he was invited to play at Northampton and only a year
later he was made captain. He played for the East Midlands
and the Barbarians before being awarded an England cap against
Wales in 1909. The new cap was said to be majestic and full
of a will to win: his legendary status was born. In 1909
he captained his country against the touring Australians.
was a charismatic leader and at the outbreak of the First
World War he personally raised a company of volunteers of
the Northampton Regiment, known as 'Mobbs Own'. He was killed
in the battle of Passchendale, charging an enemy machine-gun
post. Today there stands a memorial to him in Northampton
bearing the words '...By subscriptions of admirers the world
over, to the memory of a great and gallant soldier and sportsman,
Lieutenant-Colonel E R Hobbs.' His name is also commemorated
in the annual Mobbs Memorial Match between the East Midlands
and the Barbarians."
5th Battalion (London Rifle Brigade) The London Regiment (Territorial
Force). Second son of William George Sedgwick, of Byfield, a draper,
by his second wife Jane, daughter of William Thompson, of Eydon
; and brother to Private H Sedgwick (q.c.); born Byfield, Northants,
26th October 1891. Educated Bedford Modern School and employed afterwards
as a warehouseman with Messrs. Cook, Son & Co., St. Paul's Churchyard
: joined the London rifle Brigade in 1910; volunteered for foreign
service at the outbreak of war in August 1914; obtained a commission
as 2nd Lieutenant, 26th February 1915; was promoted Lieutenant,
1st February 1916, and Captain in August 1916; served with the Expeditionary
Force in France and Flanders from November 1914 ; spent most of
the winter of 1914-15 at Ploegsteert : was wounded abd gassed 2nd
May 1915, while the Regiment was holding trenches at Ypres, where
they had relieved the Canadians after the first gas attack by the
Germans : went back to France in August 1916, and was again wounded
while leading his company in an attack on Leuze Wood near Combles
on 10th September 1916 and died in the Field Ambulance on the following
day, Sunday. Buried at Corbie. His Colonel wrote, "Since he
came to us in the 3rd Battalion he has been quite invaluable, and
I got to know and appreciate his qualities more fully. He was a
born soldier and beside that a most charming comrade ; one does
not often come across men like him. i have to ourn the loss of a
very gallant friend." and his Major wrote, "We will all
miss him terribly : he was a most gallant and excellent officer,
and I always knew that any duty or order entrusted to him would
be carried out. He had a most charming personality and was universally
popular with everyone." A brother officer wrote : "After
dark the night he was wounded, I was in my trench when I heard a
familiar voice call my name and I found him lying on a stretcher.
He knew that he would not live but his thoughts were not for himself
at all but only for the Regiment and for those of us still left
unharmed." He was a first-class cricketer and tennis-player
being captain of the first tennis team at Messrs. cook, Son &
Co., and took part in the march to brighton made by a company selected
from the L.R.B. in the summer of 1914, when they broke the record
for that distance formerly held by the LOndon Scottish : unmarried.
Aged 25. Buried in La Neuville British Cemetery, Corbie, Somme,
Lieutenant, 9th Battalion, Norfolk Regiment. Died
21st March 1918 in France & Flanders. Age 20. Son of Alfred
and Jessie Laura Setchell, of 16, Spenser Rd., Bedford. Educated
at Bedford Modern School. Commemorated on ARRAS MEMORIAL, Pas de
Calais, France. Bay 3. See also Bedford
7th Hariana Lancers, Indian Army. Killed in action 13th April 1915.
Aged 42. On 12 April 1915 at Shaiba, Mesopotamia, Major Wheeler
took out his squadron in an attempt to capture a flag which was
the centre-point of a group of the enemy who were firing on one
of our picquets. He advanced, attacked the enemy's infantry with
the lance, and then retired while the enemy swarmed out of hidden
ground, and formed an excellent target for the Royal Artillery guns.
On 13 April Major Wheeler led his squadron to the attack of the
North Mound. He was seen far ahead of his men, riding straight for
the enemy's standards but was killed in the attack. Awarded a posthumous
Victoria Cross for his valour in Mesopotamia in 1915. See the Victoria
Cross Reference site for more details and picture.
six (three quarter) posthumous portrait by Barbara Chamier, originally
unveiled 1925. Location: as for Lt Col Mobbs. (See Second World
War Memorial above for picture). NOTE: Bedford School
also had a Major G Wheeler VC, who survived (no relation to the
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28 August, 2009