Uley War Memorial - Kathryn's history blog

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Uley War Memorial



The war memorial in Uley is an interesting one as the stone cross on the church lawn is dedicated only to 'the men of this parish' and bears no individual names. The names of the 20 Uley fallen, as well as 13 from the Second World War, are listed on a wooden memorial inside. This is a surprisingly high number of casualties for a village which had less than 1,000 residents in the 1911 census.

The memorial was designed and built by the Art Memorial Company of Stroud (previously Freebury and Hillman). It was unveiled in 1921 and is made of a local limestone.




'Praising God for the valour of England this Stone of Remembrance is raised to honour the men of this parish and all who gave their lives in the Great War 1914-1919'


The named memorial within the church is of a very unusual design, which looks like an ornate wooden cabinet within which are the names of the First World War fallen inside. On the inside of the left door is Laurence Binyon's iconic verse and on the right door are the names from the Second World War. I'm not sure why the parish chose such a design as it would seem odd to close the doors and shut away the names. 



2nd Lt. Henry Parkyns B. Baines Glos Regt                                                 
2nd Lt. JE Power Clutterbuck RFA/ RAF                                                   
L.Sgt. Richard Smith Glos Regt
Pte. Arthur Walkley Glos Regt
Pte. Cecil Long Glos Regt
Pte. Joseph N. Bick Glos Regt
Pte Frederick C. Bick Glos Regt
Pte. Harry Taylor London Regt
Pte. Jack Younger Glos Regt
Pte. J. Elliott Glos Regt
Driver Sidney T. Mynett MGCorps
Pte. Maurice Ball Glos Regt
Pte. Charles H. Trull Grenadier Guards
Pte. William Trull Coldstream Guards
Gnr. George H. Trull RFA
Gnr. Joseph C. Trull RGA
Sergt. Horace Barnett Glos Regt
Sergt. Henry Pullin Rifle Brigade
Pte. Dennis Hoart Royal W. Fus
Sergt. E.W. Dowsell Grenadier Guards                                                     

 (L-R) Charles, George and William Trull

Perhaps the most poignant names on the memorial are the four Trulls, who were all brothers from Shadwell Field. They were among ten siblings  born to William and Margaret and five who served in the First World War. Charles (1894-17/10/1915) died on service with the Grenadier Guards at the Battle of Loos. He had joined the army in 1912. 
William (1892-31/7/1917) joined the army, under conscription, in September 1916 and sailed to France in March 1917. He had been wounded in action on 29th July, likely in the Third Battle of Ypres, and it was reported that he had died two days later at a casualty clearing station. He is buried at Dozinghem Cemetery on the Belgian/ French border which had been the site of a military hospital. 
Just a few months later George (1897-30/10/1917) was killed in action, while also fighting at the Third Battle of Ypres. He is buried at Vlaamertinghe cemetery, a few miles west of Ypres and just six miles from his brother William.
Following the deaths of the three brothers the Dursley Gazette published a story dedicated to the family which said the deaths 'caused great sorrow in the parish and universal sympathy is felt for the parents in their sore losses'. They also published the three pictures above, although sadly there doesn't seem to be one of Joseph.
Joseph (1884-9/4/1918) was the eldest of the brothers who died in the war. He served with the Royal Garrison Artillery and died in Contay on the Somme region during the German Spring Offensive. He left behind his wife Bessie Dowsell who he'd married in 1914 and their son, Joseph, who was just a year old. Joseph Junior, is remembered on the panel to the right of his father, having died in 1944 while serving in the Royal Air Force. He is buried in Uley Churchyard.

Pte James Elliott of the Gloucestershire Regiment was 40 years old and unmarried when he enlisted in Kitchener's Army. He was initially deployed with the 7th battalion to Gallipoli where they re-enforced the ANZAC troops in the second wave of attacks in summer 1915. This soon ground to a stalemate with many British casualties taken, not least by the heat and diseases the English men were not accustomed to.  The troops were finally evacuated in January 1916.

From here, his battalion was then sent to the British base in Egypt which was primarily used to defend the Suez Canal trade route, before they moved again to Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq). Jim Elliott was killed in the final few days of the Baghdad offensive on 23rd March, 1918. Here, the British Army were pursuing the Turks (who controlled Mesopotamia) in order to maintain their provision of oil, essential to keep the war effort going. The Turkish Headquarters in Mesopotamia had fallen to British hands in March 1917 but it took another year before the fighting around the city would cease.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission's website currently warns against visiting Elliott's grave where fighting still continues today. Even a century on, it is still the region's oil and unstable governments which perpetuate the violence and destruction of the region.
Baghdad War Cemetery - photo source

Please get in touch if you'd like to know more about any of the names on the Uley memorial or have any information you'd like to share with me.

Kathryn

2 comments:

  1. Really interesting to read this. Thanks for researching and posting.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Kath
    I have just seen the info on the Trull family from Uley, This is my family, my name is Robert George Trull
    i am now 68 years old, my Grandfather was Percy Henry Trull he was one of the brothers from the same family he died in 1964 at the age of 67, so was born around 1897. i remember a picture that i think was him in a uniform of a Scots Regiment, i remember playing with his leg putties when i was very young, sadly i was only 14 when he died, so never talked to him about his time in the war.
    As you can see the same names were used in later generations, George being popular.
    I hope this has given you a bit more insight into our Family, if you have any questions please let my know, kind regards Robert Trull
    He had a son George Charles Trull who was my father

    ReplyDelete

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