Ministry of Defence
Ministry of Defence

Lest We Forget
British Legion
The Royal British Legion

WITCHAM WAR MEMORIAL

World War 1 and 2 - Roll of Honour with detailed information
Compiled and copyright © 2000 Dave Edwards

The names of the fallen of Witcham are recorded on a brass plaque within St Martin's Church and beneath this a is wooden plaque recording the Second World War.

TO THE GLORY OF GOD
THIS TABLET IS PLACED BY THE PARISHIONERS OF WITCHAM
IN LOVING AND REVERENT MEMORY OF THE MEN
WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES FOR THEIR COUNTRY IN THE GREAT WAR
1914 - 1918

ATKIN Herbert
Private 7545, 1st Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. Died of wounds 15 February 1915. Age 28. Born Sutton, enlisted Ely. Regular. Lived Witcham Gravel. No known grave. Commemorated on YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 21. See also Mepal

CLARKE Joseph
Private 41231, 2nd Battalion, Essex Regiment. Killed in action 22 December 1916. Aged 32. Enlisted Chatteris, resident Chatteris. Son of Mrs. R. Clark; husband of Lily Day (formerly Clark), of Witcham, Ely, Cambs. Formerly 35133, Suffolk Regiment. No known grave. Commemorated on THIEPVAL MEMORIAL, Somme, France. Pier and Face 10 D. See also Chatteris [Listed as CLARK on CWGC]

GILES Charles [Ernest]
Lance Corporal 5939, 'C' Company, 3rd Battalion, Rifle Brigade (The Prince Consort's Own). Died of wounds 21 November 1915. Aged 26. Born Witcham, enlisted and resident Ely. Youngest son of William and Eliza Giles, of "The Bacque Whey," Witcham, Ely. Buried in BOULOGNE EASTERN CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot VIII. Row C. Grave 58.
KING George
Private 6915, 2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. Killed in action 28 March 1918. Aged 32. Born Witcham, enlisted Ely. Son of John and Jane King, of 62, Silver St., Ely, Cambs. No known grave. Commemorated on ARRAS MEMORIAL, Pas de Calais, France. Bay 4. See also Coveney [Listed as Lance Corporal on memorial and as A G KING]

LEEDING Charles Cecil
Private 41935, 7th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment). Killed in action 27 May 1917. Aged 29. Born and resident Witcham, enlisted Ely. Formerly 20797, 3rd Battalion, East Surrey Regiment. Buried in ALBUERA CEMETERY, BAILLEUL-SIRE-BERTHOULT, Pas de Calais, France. South Plot/Row/Section A. Grave 16.
NORMAN Arthur John
Private G/61427, 13th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment). Died of wounds 12 April 1917. Aged 21. Born Witcham, enlisted Ely. Regular. Son of John Norman; brother of Mr P Norman, West End, Witcham. Formerly 11919, Queen's (Royal West Surrey Regiment). Buried in ST. SEVER CEMETERY EXTENSION, ROUEN, Seine-Maritime, France. Section O. Plot VIII. Row L. Grave 12.
PATE Sidney
Private 26238, 'F' Company, 14th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Quebec Regiment.) Died 21 April 1915. Aged 21. Born 30 September 1893 in Witcham, Cambridgeshire. Son of George and Emily Pate, of 70, St. Mary's St., Ely, Cambs. Clerk. Unmarried. Enlisted 22 September 1914 at Valcartier, Quebec, Canada having been passed fit 28 August 1914. Height 5 feet 7 inches, girth 34 inches, complexion fair, eyes hazel, hair fair; religion Church of England. No known grave. Commemorated on YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 24 - 26 - 28 - 30. National Archives of Canada Accession Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 7625 - 6 [Listed as Private, Montreal Regiment on memorial]

PATE Thomas aka Tom
Acting Corporal 2705, 1st Life Guards. Killed in action 20 October 1914. Born Witcham, enlisted in London. No known grave. Commemorated on YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 3.

POOLE Walter
Private 3554, 1st Battalion, East Surrey Regiment. Killed in action 5 May 1915. Aged 33. Born Witcham, enlisted Kilburn, Middlesex. Son of Freeman and Betsy Poole, of Witcham, Ely, Cambs. Buried in WOODS CEMETERY, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Plot I. Row B. Grave 15.
PURELL John William
Sergeant 849, 1st Battalion, Cambridgeshire Regiment. Killed in action 21 March 1915. Born Witcham, enlisted Sutton. No known grave. Commemorated on YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 50 and 52.

Although it is stated he died 21 March 1915 according to CWGC but more likely 13 March 1915, see below.

Purrell was assistant overseer for Wentworth and his mother, Mrs Purrell, lived in Witcham. He was a pre-war Territorial with H (Ely) company. The Cambs. Times says he was buried in a trench through the bursting of a shell. Capt. Keenlyside wrote to his mother and stated that Sgt Purell (note spelling) went up to the trench with a regular Regiment, (this was the 2nd Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry), to gain experience on evening of March 13th. About 5.15pm the trench he was in was bombarded heavily and had to be evacuated. His trench and those on either side were captured by the enemy. It is not known whether he was taken prisoner or killed. There is no record of Purell ever being taken prisoner and subsequently dying.

Also listed on Wentworth Memorial

ROWELL William Seth
Able Seaman R/1803, Hood Battalion, Royal Naval Divison. Born 24 June 1898. Son of William Rowell, of The Green, Mepal. Mobilized 15 June 1917 to 3rd Reserve Battalion, at Blandford. Joined Hood Battalion, Royal Naval Divison, 29 October 1917 at Passchendaele. Posted Missing 24 March 1918 (retreat from Cambrai to Hamel), later reported PoW. Died while POW Lazarette War Hospital, Lehrerseminar A.27 D.F.35 19 October 1918. No cause of death stated, but very likely pneumonia/influenza. Buried in MONS (BERGEN) COMMUNAL CEMETERY, Mons, Hainaut, Belgium. Plot VIII. Row A. Grave 7. See also Mepal
SABERTON Richard Walter
Private 29866, 2nd Battalion, Duke of Edinburgh's (Wiltshire Regiment). Killed in action 18 October 1916. Aged 21. Born London, enlisted Isle of Ely, resident Ely. Son of Richard and M. J. Saberton, of Witcham, Ely, Cambs. Formerly 23943, Suffolk Regiment. Buried in WARLENCOURT BRITISH CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot VI Row E. Grave 21.
SABERTON Walter
Private, Middlesex Regiment. Probably: Henry William Saberton, Private 18257, 7th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment. Killed in action 8 November 1915. Aged 35. Born Bethnal Green, Middlesex, enlisted Newmarket. Son of Henry William and Sally Saberton, of Witcham, Ely; husband of Ada Saberton, of 65, Newnham St., Ely, Cambs. No known grave. Commemorated on LOOS MEMORIAL, Pas de Calais, France. Panel 37 and 38.
SHARP Charles aka Charlie
Lance Corporal 140972, 63rd Field Company, Royal Engineers. Died of wounds 20 October 1918. Aged 29. Born Witcham, enlisted Bourne, Lincolnshire. Husband of M. Cunnington (formerly Sharp), of 89, Station Rd., Langley Mill, Derbyshire. Lived in Witcham and moved to Derbyshire to become a miner. Buried in DUHALLOW A.D.S. CEMETERY, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Plot IV. Row H. Grave 37. [Listed as Sapper on memorial]
VYE George [Samuel]
Trooper 3082, 1st Life Guards. Died of wounds 20 May 1918. Aged 28. Born Witcham, enlisted Ely. Son of William and Elizabeth Vye, of Manor House, Witcham, Ely, Cambs. Buried in ETAPLES MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot LXV. Row C. Grave 27.

Their name liveth for evermore

On a wooden plaque beneath:

1939 - 1945

BEDWORTH Edward Albert
Private 5832466, 5th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who Died on active service as a japanese Prisoner of War on Sunday, 29 August 1943. Aged 29. Son of Mr. and Mrs. George James Bedworth, of Hendon, Middlesex; husband of Jane Bedworth, of Witcham, Ely, Cambridgeshire. No known grave. Commemorated on the SINGAPORE MEMORIAL, Kranji War Cemetery, Singapore. Column 54.

Last updated 19 January, 2012

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