World War 1 Remembered

Every year at the 11th hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, we stand outside in the cold, crisp air to pay tribute, and to remember the men of this village who fell in the Great War, and every year as I listen to the names being read out I wonder about the men behind those names. So this year being the 100 years anniversary, seemed like an opportune moment to find out just who they were.

The first thing I found was that not only do we have two sets of memorials in St Andrew, one behind the altar emblazoned in gold, and one written in stone on the memorial, but we also have a third set in the Memorial Hall (which was built incidentally to commemorate the fallen of both wars), AND one in each of our two schools. And surprise surprise they don't match! My list of the fallen has steadily grown and to date I currently have 50 plus names and hopefully this will prove correct unless you can tell me any different!

The ages of the men range from 18 to early 30's, some married but most single. Not all the men were Ombersley born and most were farm workers of one sort or another, but they all had Parish connections. Like Frank Bellamy who was a private in the Worcestershire Regiment, born at Powick, enlisted at Kidderminster and was a farm labourer at Comhampton, later to be killed at Ypres aged 34 years. Remembered with honour on the Menin Gate where they still honour the men at a nightly service there. Frank must have died during the 3rd battle for Ypres before the capture of Passchendaele which was in November 1917, 4 months after he died.

Young Percy Biddle, the son of Henry and Ann worked at Ombersley Court and was 19 yrs. old when he died in France.

We have brothers Albert and Joseph Butler of Mortimer Terrace, aged 18 and 28 respectively when they died. Joe is buried in St Andrew's churchyard, you can find him just by the big fir tree in the middle of the churchyard if you want to pay your respects. Albert was a corporal at 18 and is buried on the Island of Malta.

James Wainwright Blount was aged just 19 when he died of wounds at sea. His parents lived at Chadwick. His death confused me as he died at sea yet was a corporal in the 4th battalion of the Worcestershire Regiment, so what was he doing on a ship?

An example of a soldier who wasn't local but had local connections, was John William Hincksman who emigrated to Canada and became a rancher there. He became an Infantryman one of the Canadian Expeditionary Forces. He is described on De Ruvigny's Roll of Honour as the most promising officer who was due for immediate promotion for all the good works he had done for his unit. He was, it says, a thoroughly efficient, courageous, reliable officer of a most pleasant character. His mother lived at Sinton. Mrs Hincksman had 3 sons on active service.

Henry Sheppard lived at Sarah House, Boreley and was dad to 4 young children when he was killed aged 29, and I am pleased to say that I have a picture of Henry resplendent in his bowler hat with a magnificent moustache!

Lastly Aubrey Herbert Bower Webster was the only son of John Webster, the Vicar of this church. Killed in April 1916 Aubrey was 27 yrs old and a schoolmaster at a boys boarding school in Tonbridge, Kent. When he died, Aubrey left a will containing £215 7s 7d . There is a memorial to Aubrey behind the choir stalls.

I hope I have given you just a small insight into the lives of some of these brave, ordinary men. Please take some time to think of them on this anniversary of what is the worst loss of life in conflict ever; after all they did give their tomorrow so you could be here today. November 11th 2018 was the 100th Anniversary of the Great War and for every month we feature the names of the Tommies who gave their tomorrow for your today.


  • Thomas Ashmore aged 19 years
  • Edward Berry Harvey Barnes aged 26 years
  • Frank Bellamy aged 24 years
  • Percy Biddle aged 19 years
  • Henry Brown aged 29 years


  • James Blount aged 19 years
  • Wilfred Brooks aged 18 years
  • William Burgess aged 36 years
  • J Brown Albert Butler aged 18 years
  • Joseph Butler aged 28 years


  • Charles Chesshire Marcus Cragg aged 28 years
  • Samuel Cotterill aged 26 years
  • George Cotterill aged 21 years
  • Henry Cotterill aged 20 years
  • William Childs aged 24 years


  • Percy Davies aged 23 years
  • Allen Davies aged 23 years
  • Alfred Farley aged 34 years
  • Henry Farmer aged 26 years
  • Percy Green MM aged 26 years
  • Rowland Green MM aged 27 years


  • Ernest Griffin aged 26 years
  • John Haffner aged 29 years
  • Albert Hicks aged 21 years
  • Albert Hill aged 30 years
  • E Hill John Hickesman aged 27 years


  • Herbert Hobday aged 23 years
  • Alfred Hobday aged 23 years
  • Harold Houghton aged 20 years
  • Claude Kershaw aged 20 years
  • Richard Knight aged 33 years
  • Ernest Knight aged 26 years


  • Fredrick Keyte aged 25 years
  • Reginald Moule aged 21 years
  • Elias Marshall aged 23 years
  • Joseph Master aged 25 years
  • Albert Miles aged 28 years
  • William Morris aged 30 years
  • Albert Norman aged 24 years
  • Wilfred Page aged 32 years
  • Charles Pardoe DCM aged 23 years
  • Fredrick Pardoe aged 39 years
  • Joseph Pardoe aged 27 years
  • David Price aged 34 years


  • Alfred Passey aged 32
  • Charles Phillips aged 19
  • Ernest Phillips aged 20
  • Frank Phillips aged 23
  • George Phillips aged 21
  • Leonard Pitman aged 24


  • Henry Read aged 42 years
  • Henry Rice aged 27 years
  • James Roberts aged 19 years
  • Alfred Skerrett aged 18 years
  • Alfred Smith Herbert Smith aged 40 years


  • Henry Smith aged 23 years
  • Henry Sheppard aged 29 years
  • John Taylor aged 28 years
  • Oswin Taylor aged 26 years
  • John Warner aged 30 years
  • Aubrey Webster aged 27 years
  • Joseph Weston aged 20 years


  • Charles Williams aged 25 years
  • Christopher Wigley aged 26 years
  • Frederick Wild aged 27 years
  • Harry Wild aged 35 years
  • Reginald Wild aged 22 years
  • George Wood aged 27 years
  • Charlie Worth aged 20 years

Their Name Liveth Forever more

I would love to hear from anyone who has further information or photographs about any of the men named.

Jeanette Horn This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.