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Compiled and copyright © 2000 Martin Edwards

The memorial stands beside the road just inside the grounds of St. Andrew parish church. It consists of a two tiered plinth with inscriptions on the four sides of the large, upper, part and a pyramid style top with sculptured wreaths of poppies surrounding its base. The memorial is made from stone. It has one step with paving surrounding it enclosed by a small, ornate, wrought iron fence. Separate vases also sit at the base of the memorial. Although the unveiling date of the memorial has not as yet been ascertained there are clues. The local school was cloed on 14th April 1919 for the uneviling of the memorial although this may conflict with the Parish Council Minutes for the 8th July 1919 that talk about providing a meat tea for the village on 19th July 1919 when the memorial was unveiled.

This article from the Cambridge Independent Press - Friday 23 April 1920, page 5:


Unveiling Ceremony Performed by
Lieut.-Col. Clayton, D.S.O.

A graceful memorial to the seventeen men of Girton who made the supreme sacrifice in the war was unveiled Wednesday, in the churchyard, by Lieut.-Col. M. C. Clayton, D.S.O., Commanding Officer the Cambridgeshire Regiment. Prior to the unveiling ceremony, an impressive service was held in the Church, which was packed to overflowing. Hymn 221 (A. and M.) followed by a shortened evening service, conducted the Rector (Rev. R. M. Linton). The lesson was taken from Isaiah xxvi., 1—13, and read by Dr. Cobden Haslam, after which followed the singing of hymn 457 (A. and M.). A short but impressive address was then delivered by the Right Rev. Bishop Price. Archdeacon of Ely, who took as his text. "Greater love hath man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends."

After the thanksgiving prayers, the congregation left the church in typical April weather, and the ceremony of unveiling memorial was formally performed Lieut.-Col. Clayton, who paid high and honourable tribute to the memory of the gallant men who had fought and died under him. He said he had been proud to command such men. and to call them comrades-in-arms. Col. Clayton spoke with intense feeling, and went say that now the memorial was finallv erected, it would not do to pat oneself complacently upon the back in the belief that our duty to the fallen was as fully discharged as lay within our power. It was not, and never could be discharged, but our duty lay now towards the dependants of those gallant dead, towards those men—soldiers indeed—the men who were broken and crippled for life. They had a just and legitimate claim upon our sympathies and upon ourselves, and it was our plain duty to help them to the uttermost.

At the conclusion of the address, the "Last Post” was sounded Staff-Sergt. Bugler J. J. S. Kent, a veteran of many years' service, late of the 1st Cambs. Regiment Volunteer Training Corps. Many beautiful wreaths were then placed upon the memorial.

The memorial, which was designed by, and is the work of the well-known local stonemason, Mr. F. Baccus, of Histon, is a slender obelisk, twelve feet in height, of finest Portland stone, and two faces bears the 17 names of the men to whose memory has been erected.

Upon the front the obelisk bears the inscription: "In Grateful Memory of Men of Girton Who Gave Their Lives in the Cause of Freedom during the Great War, 1914-1919, whose names are inscribed hereon.”

Then follow the names: Horace Asplen, 11th Suffolk Regiment; C. Asplen, M.G.C.; Noble Cranfield, Ist Canadians; Reginald Cranfield, 4th Yorks. and Lancs. Regiment: James Cote, 2nd Suffolk Regiment; Thomas Heath, Royal Fusiliers; Elias Hankin, 11th Suffolk Regiment; Alfred Hancock, 2nd Suffolk Regiment; Albert Jackson, 1st Beds. Regiment; Charles Jackson, 1st Beds. Regiment; Sidney Loweth (Sergt.), R.F.A.; Reginald Nightingale, 11th Suffolk Regiment; Walter Nightingale, 1st Cambs.: A. H. North, Royal Engineers; Frederick Pauley, 1st Cambridgeshire Regiment; Luke Speed, 1st Cambridgeshire Regiment; Richard Watson, 8th Suffolk Regiment; William Wilson, 2nd Suffolk Regiment, and Henry Nightingale, of the Grenadier Guards.

Among those present were Dr. Cobden Haslam, Mr. Edward Newton, Mr. Bernard Newton, Mr. and Mrs. Searle. Mr. G. R. Brown, Mr. J. H. Garner, Mr. and Mrs. Pond, Mr. F. Baccus, the designers of the memorial.

In every sense the memorial takes the form of a united and spontaneous tribute of honour from the entire village. Every inhabitant has subscribed towards its cost, and despite incessant rain a representative of practically every family in the village was present at the ceremony. The committee responsible for the inception of the scheme was composed of 68 members, under the presidency of Dr. Haslam, who has been the prime mover throughout.

GirtonWM5.jpg - 15206 Bytes

Photograph Copyright © Martin Edwards 2000


AMPS James Young
Private 106029, Machine Gun Corps (Infantry). Killed in action 25 March 1918. Born and resident Oakington, enlisted Cambridge. Worked for Great Eastern Railway. Buried in ASSEVILLERS NEW BRITISH CEMETERY, Somme, France. Plot IV. Row E. Grave 7. See also Liverpool Street Station War Memorial and Oakington St Andrew
ASPLIN Charles  
Lance Corporal, 21928 39th Battalion, Machine Gun Corps (Infantry), who Killed in action on Tuesday, 3rd September 1918. Age 31. Enlisted Cambridge. Husband of Elizabeth Asplen, of 18, New St., Cambridge. Formerly 1813, 1/1st Cambridgeshire Regiment. Went to France 14th February 1915, 'B' Company, transferred to 118th Brigade Machine Gun Corps in 1916, which later amalgamated to become 39th Battlion Machine Gun Corps. Buried in MONCHY BRITISH CEMETERY, MONCHY-LE-PREUX, Pas de Calais, France. Plot II. Row D. Grave 32. [ASPLEN on CWGC]. See also Cambridge Guildhall and Cambridge St Matthew
ASPLIN Horace William
[ASPLEN on CWGC] Private 17354, "B" Company, 11th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, who was killed in action on, Saturday, 1st July 1916. Age 21. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. Son of Walter Charles Asplen, of Church Lane, Girton, Cambridge. No known grave. Commemorated on the THIEPVAL MEMORIAL, Somme, France. Pier and Face 1 C and 2 A.

COLE James Arthur
Private 31411, 2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, who died of wounds on Sunday, 28th April 1918. Age 32. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. Husband of J. A. Cole, of 44, Richmond Rd., Cambridge. Native of Girton, Cambs. Buried in LAPUGNOY MILITARY CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot IX. Row D. Grave 8. See also Cambridge Guildhall
CRANFIELD Noble Charles
Private 427667, 13th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Quebec Regiment), who died on Thursday, 12th October 1916. Age 33. Born 7th January 1883 at Girton. Son of Mrs. Ann Cranfield, of High Street, Girton. Labourer by trade. Unmarried. Enlisted and passed fit 20th September 1915 at Regina, Canada, aged 20, vision 20/20, height 5 feet 5½ inches, girth 39 inches, complexion ruddy, eyes blue, hair dark brown; religion Church of England. Buried in HERMIES HILL BRITISH CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot IV. Row J. Grave 2. National Archives of Canada Accession Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 2113 - 42
CRANFIELD Reginald John
Private 46746, 1st/4th (Hallamshire - Territorial Force) Battalion, York and Lancaster Regiment who was killed in action on Sunday, 13th October 1918. Age 19. Born and resident Girton, enlisted Bury St. Edmunds. Son of Charles and Ann Cranfield, of Girton, Cambridge. Buried in YORK CEMETERY, HASPRES, Nord, France. Plot/Row/Section C. Grave 27.
HANCOCK Alfred [J]
Private 64579, 2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who killed in action on Wednesday, 23rd October 1918. Born Fulbourn, enlisted Cambridge. Formerly G/29765 Middlesex Regiment. Petty Sessional Division of Cambridge, Roll of Service, July 1915 lists him as A J Hancock, Loyal Suffolk Hussars. Buried in QUIEVY COMMUNAL CEMETERY EXTENSION, Nord, France. Plot/Row/Section A. Grave 2.
Private 23687, 11th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who was killed in action on Friday, 22nd March 1918. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. No known grave. Commemorated on ARRAS MEMORIAL, Pas de Calais, France. Bay 4

HEATH John Thomas
Private 67629, Royal Fusiliers (City Of London Regiment) posted to 2nd/2nd Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City Of London Regiment) who died on Friday, 26th October 1917. Age 29. Husband of Emma Day (formerly Heath), of Suffield House, Girton, Cambs. No known grave. Commemorated on the TYNE COT MEMORIAL, Zonnebeke, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 28 to 30 and 162 to 162A and 163A
Private 10361, 1st Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment who was killed in action on Wednesday 5th May 1915. Age 21. Born Kingston, Cambridgeshire, enlisted Cambridge, resident Girton. Son of Mr. and Mrs. William John Jackson, of Ladysmith Cottages, Huntingdon Rd., Girton, Cambridge. In the 1911 Census he was the son of William John and Mary Ann Jackson, aged 17, Farm Labourer, born Kington, resident Plough and Harrow Cottages, Madingley Road, Cambridge. No known grave. Commemorated on YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 31 and 33

1st Bedfordshire Regiment possibly either Charles Jackson, Private 3/8605, 1st Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment who died of wounds on 27th [CWGC] or 24th [SDGW] April 1915. Aged 29. Born Bourn, enlisted Bedford, resident Langford, Bedfordshire. Son of William and Mary Ann Jackson, of Bourn, Cambridge; husband of Susannah Jackson, of Church Lane, Great Paxton, St. Neots, Hunts. In the 1911 census he was a Son-in-Law, married to Laura for 6 years, aged 28, Brewery Carman, born 1883 in Cambridgeshire, resident Inn Street, Biggleswade. IN the 1901 census he was the son of William J and Mary A Jackson, single, aged 15, Horseman on farm, born 1886 in Bourne, cambridgeshire, resident Cottages, Wintringham, St Neots Rural, Wintringham, Huntingdonshire. Buried in BOULOGNE EASTERN CEMETERY, Pas de Calais, France. Plot VIII. Row A. Grave 37. Also commemorated on Langord War Memorial, Bedfordshire or Charles William Jackson, Private 40052, 1st Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment. Killed in action 23rd April 1917. Born Beccles, Suffolk, enlisted Bury St Edmunds, resident Ringfield, Suffolk. Formerly 28840, Suffolk regiment. No known grave. Commemorated on ARRAS MEMORIAL, Pas de Calais, France. Bay 5.
LOWETH [Frederick] Sydney
Serjeant, 56109, 135th Battery, 32nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery who was killed in action on Monday, 8th October 1917. Born Kettering, Northamptonshire in 1891, enlisted Huntingdon. In 1911 he was a Driver with 135th Battery, RFA, aged 20, born Gretton, Kettering, resident at Bordon Barracks, Hampshire. In 1901 he was resident in Gretton, Rutlandshire, his mother was born in Cambridge. Buried in CEMENT HOUSE CEMETERY, LANGEMARCK, Langemark-Poelkapelle, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Plot I. Row F. Grave 15. Note: There were only two men called LOWETH who are listed on the CWGC, one being John LOWETH and the other this man listed here, Frederick LOWETH.
[Memorial shows A H NIGHTINGALE]. Guardsman (Private) 27743, 1st Battalion, Grenadier Guards who was killed in action on Saturday, 1st December 1917. Age 20. Born Guton (sic - Girton), enlisted Cambridge. Son of Emily Nightingale, of High St., Girton, Cambridge, and the late Arthur Nightingale. No known grave. Commemorated on the CAMBRAI MEMORIAL, LOUVERVAL, Nord, France. Panel 2.
NIGHTINGALE Reginald [Victor]
Private 13641, 11th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who was killed in action on Tuesday, 23rd May 1916. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. Buried in BECOURT MILITARY CEMETERY, BECORDEL-BECOURT, Somme, France. Plot I. Row M. Grave 8.
Private 326135, 1st Battalion, Cambridgeshire Regiment who was killed in action on Tuesday, 31st July 1917. Age 22. Born Girton and enlisted Cambridge. Son of Annie Nightingale, of Grove Cottage, Girton, Cambridge. Formerly 3117, Cambridgeshire Regiment. Buried in NEW IRISH FARM CEMETERY, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Plot XVII. Row B. Grave 10.

Photograph from Cambridge Independent Press - 14 September 1917.

Extract from Cambridge Daily News - Friday 7 September 1917, page 3:



News has been received by Mrs. J. Nightingale, of Girton, that her youngest son, Pte. Walter Nightingale, of the Cambs. Regt., was killed in action July 31st. Corpl. S. Rose, of the same section, writing to Mrs. Nightingale, says: "No one feels his loss more than I do, although he has only been in my section a short time. I knew he was a good chap, as I was with him when he was wounded on the Somme, so when he came out this last time I got him into my section. Our company got off very lightly considering we only had two men killed the first day, and, strange to say, they were both named the same. Walter suffered no pain, as he was hit in the head by a piece of shell, and never moved.” Lce.-Gorpl. G. F. Coote says: "Walter was killed in action by the bursting of a shell on Tuesday. I cannot say how sorry I am for you all in your great loss of a splendid son, and I have lost one of the best friends I ever had." Mr. E. S. Montagu, the Member for West Cambs., writing to Mrs. Nightingale, says; “I was so very sorry to hear of the death your son in the service of his country in France. Will you please accept my most sincere sympathy with you and your family in the great loss which you have sustained?—Yours very truly, E. S. Montagu." Pte. Nightingale, who was 22 years of age, joined the Cambs. Regt. at the beginning of the war, and went to France in February, 1915. He formerly worked on his father's farm at Girton.

NORTH Henry Albert
[Memorial shows A H NORTH]. Sapper, 323045, 98th Light Railway Train Crew Company, Royal Engineers who died at sea on Monday, 31st December 1917. Age 38. Born and resident Girton, enlisted Long Eaton, Derbyshire. Son of Mrs. Eliza Hawkes, of Church Lane, Girton, Cambs. No known grave. Commemorated on the JERUSALEM MEMORIAL, Israel. Panel 9.
PAULEY Frederick William
[Memorial lists him as F.H. PAULEY - There is only one F PAULEY listed on CWGC and SDGW] Private 327869, 1st Battalion, Cambridgeshire Regiment who was killed in action on Wednesday, 26th September 1917. Born Histon, enlisted Cambridge. Formerly 6174 Cambridgeshire Regiment. In the 1911 census he was aged 26, born Impington, Cambridgeshire, a Gardener's Labourer, married to Ethel Janet Pauley with one son Stanley Fred Edward Pauley, resident Primrose Terrace, High Street, Girton, Cambridgeshire. Frederick and Ethel had three children, Stanley, Thomas and Cyril, of these Thomas wnet on to have Patricia and John Pauley. Buried in VOORMEZEELE ENCLOSURES No.1 and No.2, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Plot I. Row J. Grave 41.
SPEED Luke [Edward]
9th Suffolk Regiment. Private 327889, 9th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who died of wopunds on Tuesday, 20th November 1917. Born Chesterton, enlisted Cambridge. Formerly 6217, Cambridgeshire Regiment. Buried in FINS NEW BRITISH CEMETERY, SOREL-LE-GRAND, Somme, France. Plot II. Row B. Grave 19.
WATSON Richard H
Private 24990, 8th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who was killed in action on Tuesday, 26th September 1916. Age 30. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. Son of Phillip and Alice Watson, of White House, Girton, Cambs. No known grave. Commemorated on the THIEPVAL MEMORIAL, Somme, France. Pier and Face 1 C and 2 A

WILSON William
Private 8790, 2nd Battalion, Suffolk Regiment who was killed in action on Wednesday, 30th December 1914. Age 19. Born Girton, enlisted Cambridge. Son of Barnett Wilson, of 1, Hicks Lane, Girton, Cambridge. No known grave. Commemorated on the YPRES (MENIN GATE) MEMORIAL, Ieper, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Panel 21.


Private 5933303, 1st Battalion The Cambridgeshire Regiment, Suffolk Regiment who was killed in action on Sunday, 15th February 1942 the day Singapore fell to the Japanese. Age 28. Son of William N. and Mary Elizabeth Andrews, of Girton, Cambridgeshire. No known grave. Commemorated on the SINGAPORE MEMORIAL, Singapore. Column 58.

AUSTIN Reginald George Cecil
Serjeant, 5933178, 1st Battalion The Cambridgeshire Regiment, Suffolk Regiment, prisoner of war, who died of cholera, at Kinsaiyok, Thailand, on Thursday, 29th July 1943. Age 33. Son of George Edward and Gertrude Austin; husband of Winifred Annie Austin, of Girton, Cambridgeshire. No known grave. Commemorated on the SINGAPORE MEMORIAL, Singapore. Column 57.

R.A.F. No further information currently available - there are three L BURGESS listed for World War 2 none of which stand out as this man.
DIXON Walter Philip Arthur
Private 5827933, 4th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, who died as a prisoner of war on Friday, 28th May 1943. Age 25. Buried in KANCHANABURI WAR CEMETERY, Thailand. Plot 2. Row F. Grave 56.

GERRARD Thomas Cecil
Corporal, T/73322, Royal Army Service Corps attached 3rd Commando Regiment who died on Wednesday, 19th August 1942. Age 30. Son of Joseph and Emily Mary Gerrard; husband of Vera G. Gerrard, of Cambridge. Commemorated on the BROOKWOOD MEMORIAL, Surrey. Panel 15. Column 3.
HULLYER Bertie Frederick

Leading Stoker, C/KX 99440, H.M.S. Danube III, Royal Navy who died on Sunday, 13th October 1940. Age 45. Son of William and Kate Elizabeth Hullyer; husband of Nellie Elizabeth Hullyer, of Little Wilbraham, Cambridgeshire. Commemorated on the CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL, Kent. Panel 38, Column 1.

Note: HMS Danube III was a Rescue Tug, launched in 1924, commissioned on 28th August 1939. Displacement: 234 tons. HMS Danube III (Cdr. J.R. Stenhouse, RNR, OBE, DSO, DSC) was mined and sunk of Sheerness on 13th October 1940.

JOHNS Leonard Maurice
Corporal, 7632613, Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers attached Royal Corps of Signals who died on Wednesday, 23rd August 1944. Age 34. Son of Arthur Edward and Alice Florence Johns, of Cambridge; husband of Elsie Ada Johns, of Cambridge. Buried in GAUHATI WAR CEMETERY, India. Plot 3. Row K. Grave 2.
PAULEY Thomas Alfred
Private 5833854, 5th Battalion, Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regiment who died on Saturday, 6th May 1944. Age 31. Son of Pte. Frederick William Pauley, 1st Battalion The Cambridgeshire Regt. (killed in action in Belgium, 26th September, 1917), and Ethel Janet Pauley, of Girton, Cambridgeshire; husband of Gladys Pauley, of Girton. Buried in HELIOPOLIS WAR CEMETERY, Egypt. Plot 6. Row Q. Grave 4.
PIGDEN Ernest Sidney
Private 14524374, Army Catering Corps, attached to H.Q. 21 Army Group, died 13th February 1945, age 36, Son of William and Ann Pigden; husband of Christine Lilian Pigden, of Girton, Cambridgeshire. A.C.C. Separate vase at base of memorial states "Ernest S Pidgen 1908-1945". Buried in EINDHOVEN (WOENSEL) GENERAL CEMETERY, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands. Plot RR. Grave 31.
SMITH Norman Alastair Lloyd

Pilot Officer, 40950, 235 Squadron, Royal Air Force who died on Sunday, 12th May 1940. Age 25. Son of Frederick Charles and Elsie Smith, of Cambridge. B.Sc., Hons. (Lond.). Buried in THE HAGUE (WESTDUIN) GENERAL CEMETERY, Netherlands. Allied Plot. Row 3. Grave 47.

Note: 235 Squadron flew Blenheims from Bircham Newton. On 30 October 1939, No 235 reformed at Manston as a fighter squadron and received Battles for training purposes in December. In February 1940, it equipped with Blenheims and was transferred from Fighter to Coastal Command on 27 February 1940 for fighter-reconnaissance duties. When the German invasion of the Low Countries began in May 1940, the squadron flew patrols over Holland and during the Battle of Britain was engaged in convoy protection and reconnaissance missions over the North Sea. It was during this period that Norman was killed.

WILSON Cyril Stephen
Private 6031884, 2nd Battalion, Durham Light Infantry who died on Sunday, 23rd April 1944. Age 30. Commemorated on the RANGOON MEMORIAL, Myanmar. Face 17.
Also listed for this parish in the Ely Cathedral Second World War Book of Remembrance:
JOHNSON William Henry Harper
Sergeant 755396, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Died 7th January 1941. Aged 33. Son of Thomas and Annie Johnson; husband of Margery Gwendoline Johnson, of Willingham, Cambridgeshire. Commemorated on RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL, Surrey. Panel 46.

Last updated 29 October, 2022

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