Local History - Great Malvern Cemetery
Some of the graves (page 2)
Here are some more memorials recorded during the guided tour of Great Malvern cemetery organised by Malvern Civic Society in July 2014, and after. Below this we have added some notes about Commonwealth War Grave burials. Read on, else click to continue to page 3.
Not far from the Wilton Road entrance to the cemetery are touching memorials to two boys, Laurence Henry Holland who died in 1916 aged 14 years, and Neville Bellamy.
The memorial to Neville Bellamy shown opposite reads:
Neville, the dearly loved little son of Victor and Dorrie Bellamy called away 5th March 1923 in his 6th year.
Neville was the only son of Albert Victor Bellamy and Malvern girl Dorothy Beatrice Price. Neville was survived by a sister, Marian.
Below the inscription to Neville Bellamy is a second inscription in memory of his uncle who was killed in a flying accident. The second inscription reads:
and his uncle
Victor W Price RAF, killed while serving 8th Nov 1917
Jesus was out plucking flowers, on the way he gathered ours
Lieutenant Victor William Price, 14th Bn Worcester Regiment, attached to 73 Squadron Royal Flying Corps, a passenger under instruction, was killed when his Avro 504 biplane, serial number B3179, went into a spinning nose-dive from 200 ft and crashed at Lilbourne near Rugby on 8th November 1917 (refs 8 and 9). An RAF casualty card records that he had already made 12 solo flights and had spent 19 hours in the air, 6 solo.
Wreckage - source: G Smith
The Commonwealth War Graves Commision records that Victor was buried at Great Malvern cemetery in plot 8a, grave 148, and that this was a private grave which first had a Military Wooden memorial.
The other occupant of the aircraft, instructor, 2nd Lt Norman Eustace Sassoon Croager, Royal Flying Corps, died the same day from his injuries. An account of his life can be found in reference 10. He had been studying at Kelham Theological College when war was declared.
Victor was aged 23 years when he died. He was educated at the Lyttelton Grammar School, Great Malvern, the only son of builder William Thomas and Beatrice Price of West Malvern.
More information about Lt Victor William Price can be found on the Malvern Remembers website.
A cross upon a small pedestal marks the grave of a man who retired to Great Malvern after a distinguished career in the Indian Civil Service.
The inscription reads:
Harry Arbuthnot Acworth CIE
Born March 8th 1849
Died May 19th 1933
'My peace I give unto you'
Anna Mary Godby Acworth
wife of above
Born December 6th 1860
Died July 20th 1938
'The Lord is my shepherd'
The 1911 census records that Harry was born in Nice, Italy, and that he was a retired Indian Civil Service pensioner. His wife was born in Lahore, India. The Times reported that after two years of study he had passed his final examination for the Civil Service of India in 1870.
The London Gazette records he was made a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire in 1895.
A 1902 Directory lists him as a Fellow of the University of Bombay, JP, Great Malvern. Later Directories record him living at the Walmer Lodge in Abbey Road, The Mythe on the corner of College Road, and latterly at The Palms in Orchard Road.
The publication 'Malvern in the Great War 1914' records that:
The death of Harry Arbuthnot Acworth was reported in the Times (London, England) on May 30th 1933. The transcription of his obituary reads:
Harry and Anna's eldest daughter Edith Mary Acworth, born Bombay India, married Cecil Acworth, and she died at Tunbridge Wells in 1949. Their youngest daughter Rosamund Alys Acworth, born Bombay India, married Robert F W Conquest, and she too lived to a good age.
Harry and Anna's sons Douglas Harry Acworth and John Arden Acworth are recorded on the rolls of the fallen at Great Malvern library and in The Priory and they are also remembered at Winchester College.
His inscription reads:
Royal Field Artillery
21st October 1914
The CWGC do not give his age or name his parents, but we think Charles was born Malvern, the son of Edward and Emily Sutton of Lower Wyche. His father Edward was a butcher.
Charles was a member of 2nd South Midlands (249) Brigade Royal Field Artillery TA when he fell ill on the Isle of Wight and died in hospital.
We think he was aged only 17 years.
Charles was survived by his elder brothers Ernest James, who joined the Army Service Corps, James Robert, a butcher like his father, and two sisters.
A tall monument containing the outline of a missing sword, above a laurel wreath, marks the resting place of a young French soldier of the Great War.
The inscription reads:
A la memoire bien aimee
De mon fils
1898 - 1919
Charles was born at Bernay in France on 21st December 1898 and he died at Malvern on 29th March 1919 aged 20 years.
He was a French soldier of the159th Regiment, Alpine Infantry, who had been evacuated to Malvern for convalescence suffering from gas poisoning. He was probably accommodated at a small Red Cross auxiliary hospital, subordinate to a larger military hospital in Birmingham.
Malvern Urban District Council had made the old Malvern Hospital, off Newtown Road, available to the Red Cross, and beds were also made available at the then new Community hospital at Lansdowne Crescent. Rhydd Court, home of Sir Edmund Lechmere, and Brand Lodge, on Jubilee Drive in Colwall, were also converted to convalescent hospitals (ref 4) as was Ashfield on the junction of Abbey Road and College Road.
Charles was the only son of Madame Giraudeau who was then a member of staff at Clarendon School for Girls in Cowleigh Road, North Malvern. His grave is not listed by the CWGC because although France was an ally, only the casualties of Commonwealth soldiers are recorded. Can you tell us more about either him, his sister, or his mother?
Charles obituary appeared in the Malvern Gazette on Friday April 11th 1919. It reads:
On the south western boundary of the cemetery are two Second World War graves.
One is inscribed:
R 65658 Sergeant
A F B Brodribb
Royal Canadian Air Force
1st September 1941
He was the son of Francis Bower Brodribb, a civil engineer, born London, who had emigrated to Ontario, Canada with his wife Nellie Gwendolyn Morgan Brodribb.
AFB Brodribb attached to 99 Squadron Bomber Command at RAF Waterbeach in Cambridgshire was killed when his Vickers Wellington bomber crashed in a field in Suffolk after being attacked by a Junkers 88 night-fighter as it came in to land.
We wondered why a Canadian who crashed in Suffolk should be buried in Great Malvern cemetery, and the answer proved to be quite simple. His mother Nellie Gwendolyn Morgan had been born 1st August 1893 at St Winefrides in Wilton Road, Great Malvern, and perhaps it was his uncle Tom Higgins Cook Morgan or aunt Ruth Winefride Morgan who arranged his burial in Malvern, yards from the old family home.
Anthony was survived by his brothers Peter and Richard Bower Brodribb.
The inscription reads:
S C Smith
22nd February 1941
Greater love hath no man
Sidney was a member of 149 Battery, 27th Light Anti Aircraft Regiment.
We have not been able to find out anything about 149 Battery but wonder if the unit was then equipped with light machine guns to protect English airfields.
Sidney, born Malvern in 1905, was the son of Albert Smith and Harriett Stone of north Malvern. The 1911 census recorded Albert as an upholsterer of 6 Labernum Terrace, Newtown, Malvern.
Sidney was survived by his elder brothers Albert William, Christopher Ernest and Joseph Harold Smith, who lived to a good age. Joseph died at Woodside, Guarlford in 1960.
Not far away, there are two memorials to the MacDonald family.
The first inscription reads:
In loving memory of
John Alexander MacDonald
Died 17th April 1948, aged 16
only son of the late
Major Alexander John MacDonald, RE
Killed in action on 28th May 1940
and buried at Comines
'These have entered before us into everlasting life'
Major, 894, Alexander John MacDonald, 59 Field Company, Royal Engineers, was probably killed in Belgium during the withdrawal of the British Army to Dunkirk. He was aged 39 years and mentioned in despatches.
Alexander was the son of Colonel Frederick Weston Peile MacDonald (1863 - 1955), formerly of the Indian Army, and of Edith Inez Macdonald (nee Powlett). Alexander married Stella Constance Christian Stuart in 1929 and in addition to their son John they had a daughter Jean Constance Lucy MacDonald born 1929.
Stella was a descendant of Sir David Pollock who was appointed Chief Justice of Bombay in 1846 and knighted in the same year.
Stella's memorial is a tablet laid in the grass.
The inscription reads:
Also of Mrs
1900 - 1976
Wife, mother, and
We don't know the McDonalds' connection with Malvern but surmise Alexander's parents retired to Great Malvern and lived at 'Howards' in Avenue Road where his mother was living at the time of her death.
In 1957 Stella, with many others, was admitted to the Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem.
Not far away is a memorial to Thomas Frederick Downes (1885-1948), his wife Sarah (1884-1961) and their son William.
The inscription is worn away at the base but appears to read:
In loving memory of my dear husband
Thomas F Downes
Died March 17th 1948
Also our son William
Killed on active service
Died November 29th 1944
Faintly below is written:
Also Sarah wife of above
Died Nov 19th 1961
Thomas Frederick Downes married Sarah Batkin in 1907. In the 1911 census he is recorded as a publican and monger of Birmingham. They had two sons Thomas Frederick born 1908 and William Henry born 1913. At the time of his death Thomas was living at Lansdowne Close, on the north side of the cemetery.
At the outbreak of war in 1939, William married Esther Algava Seaborne and they lived at 101, Pickersleigh Road, Malvern.
The CWGC database records:
William Henry Downes, known as Bill
88 Field Regiment Royal Artillery
Died 29th November 1944, aged 31 years
Commemorated Kachanaburi War Cemetery, Thailand
The inscription at the bottom of his memorial at Kachanaburi reads:
To the memory of Bill, my beloved husband
God's greatest gift. Remembrance
During the Second world War, 88 (2nd West Lancashire) Field Regiment fought in France amd Belgium in 1939-40 before being posted to Malaya in 1941. They fought in the defence of Malaya against Japanese forces throughout 1941. Read more
They then withdrew and went on to see action in Singapore, where they were captured by the Japanese.
Sadly, William was just one of thousands of Allied POWs and others, who were treated very harshly by the Japanese, and died, far from home, building the Burma Railway.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records other burials which are listed below; the CWGC also recorded that:
The cemetery is now managed by Malvern Town Council.
Died of pneumonia at Winchester on 25 October 1918 aged 25 years. He was a Captain, Hants Bty, Royal Garrison Artillery, and had been stationed at Horse Sand Fort off Portsmouth.
Alan was the son of glass merchant Arthur Thomas Bate (born Malvern Wells,1858-1941) and Alice Florine Maude Barker.
His mother Alice was the daughter of banker Christopher Dove Barker and Alice Gray Elmslie (1835-1918) who lived at a large mansion known as Radnor House in College Road, Great Malvern. The house is now one of the boarding houses of Malvern College public school.
Alan had married Frances Eva King in 1916; he was survived by his brother Leonard Robert Arthur Bate and a sister.
We have not located his headstone.
Thomas Bowley, born at Malvern in 1868, and died of sickness in England on 27th December 1916 was a Driver, service number '71800' based at the Royal Engineers' Wireless Training Centre at Worcester.
A veterans' website quotes:
We trained at Worcester and Morton on British field sets with a cat’s whisker receiver; there were no amplifiers in those days.
Little is said about 'Wireless' in WWI but it appears it did have a role to play; for example see this blog about sigint.
Strangely, Thomas does not have a CWGC headstone, but a civilian monument topped by a cross which has become detached and now lies behind the inscribed base. The inscription reads:
Loving Memory of Thomas Bowley,
Driver Royal Engineers
who died December 27th 1916
aged 42 years
Erected by his devoted Eva
Thomas is thought to have been a Malvern man, the son of farm labourer William and Sarah Bowley. In 1891 he married Mary Ann Edgington. The 1911 census records that Thomas had been a jobbing gardener of 2 St Mary, Woodshears Road, Malvern, married 20 years with one daughter. Sadly his wife had died in 1912.
There are two mysteries about the inscription. Thomas was born in 1868, so in 1916 would have been 48; did he lie about his age in order to get into the army? Secondly, who was Eva who commissioned the headstone. Was she his fiancee and prospective second wife or was this the nickname of his only daughter, Frances Marion Elizabeth born 1894 who died at Worcester in 1980?
The grave of William Carveth lies next to that of Kenneth Williams a few yards north east of the chapel and mortuary. The inscription on his headstone reads:
29th May 1915
Possibly aged 21, he was killed in an accident on the railway at Malvern Wells where the Gloucestershires were attending a training camp at Peachfield Common.
His mother was Mrs John Carveth of Ontario, Canada.
His headstone reads:
R E Edwards
3rd May 1915
Died at Malvern aged 35 years. 13th Battalion, Gloucestershire Regiment (Forest of Dean Pioneers).
We know little about him except that he was born at Llandudno, enlisted at West Hartlepool and his wife may have lived at 3 Provence Road, Bootle, Lancashire. He is listed on the Llandudno War Memorial.
Like William Carveth he may also have died from sickness or injury at the training camp on Peachfield Common.
His headstone reads:
F J Harrison
Royal Field Artillery
4th March 1916
It seems Francis was wounded on active service on several occasions and sadly took his own life on the railway at Winchester aged only 27 years.
He was a member of 4th Reserve Brigade, Royal Field Artillery.
Born 1890 and one of a large family, the 1911 census records that he was the son of bank clerk Richard Henry and Sarah Harrison then of Langham Villa, Barnards Green, Malvern, where new shops now stand recently occupied by Jane's Flower Box, and the Toy Corner.
After his father died in 1912, his mother Sarah moved to Barber's Hill now known as Wedderburn Road, off Pound Bank.
Aged 20, Francis had been an assistant attendant at Malvern College Gymnasium.
The inscription on his headstone in the south west quadrant of the churchyard reads:
H E Hetherington
Royal Marine Light Infantry
24th November 1919 age 47
Until the day break
Henry was the son of musician Henry Ralph and Frances Hetherington, of Pimlico, London born on 8th Sep 1872.
He enlisted with the RMLI, Chatham Division on 8th October 1890.
The 1911 census records him on board HMS Vanguard, First Class Battleship, Portland Harbour, commanded by Captain John Bridges Eustace.
In 1901 at Alverstoke he married Lily Sabina Williams (1871 - 1937) and they had three daughters. Lily is later recorded at 14 Upper Chase Road, Great Malvern.
Died on 27th May 1917 aged 45 years. Private 33239, 10th Bn Welsh Regiment.
Edward Evan Llewellyn was born 1872, St Athan, Glamorganshire, Wales, the son of agricultural labourer Thomas and Mary Jenkins Llewellyn. He was one of a large family and in 1901 he was a coal miner.
We assume, he was injured and brought to Malvern to convalesce, where he died.
He was survived by his youngest brother Arthur William Llewellyn and other siblings. As his parents had died, his next of kin was recorded as his brother J Llewellyn of 61 Salisbury Rd, Barry, Glamorgan.
Headstone not located.
The inscription on his headstone reads:
Royal Horse Artillery
23rd January 1917
He was attached to 'P' Battery, Royal Horse Artillery which may have been a home based training unit at Larkhill.
We have not been able to identify him in the census, but possibly this was Kenneth C Williams listed on the roll of the fallen in Christ Church, Avenue Road.
A manuscript CWGC document records that he was the son of Mrs E Williams of Hawthorn Lodge, Lower Wilton Road, Malvern.
Died on 16th April 1941 at Brentford, Middlesex aged 25 years. Private 7634996, Royal Army Ordnance Corps.
We think he was the son of butler Edwin and Alice Jane Sparks nee Dew, born Aldbourne, Wiltshire 1906.
Possibly his parents had moved to work in Great Malvern, as his mother died at Malvern in 1974.
Headstone not located.
Died at Malvern on 31st May 1942 aged 37 years. Corporal Home Guard 7th Worcestershire (Malvern) Bn. Son of bank accountant Frederic Whitfield and Mary Evans of the Gower, Glamorganshire.
He married Hilda Alexandra Ponder in 1937 and they lived at 4 Bello Squardo Mansions, Foley Terrace, St Ann's Road, Malvern, a Victorian Villa built on the site of an old chapel circa 1825. They had a two year old son.
Mick Wilks relates in his excellent book 'Chronicles of the Home Guard' (ref 7) that:
His elder brother Whitfeld David Evans died, not long after, at Derby in 1945, aged 44 years. In 1916 he had joined the London and North Western Railway aged 16 years. The London Gazette listed that he was a Flight Cadet made 2nd Lt Air Observer in 1918 and in 1928 he was made a Lt in the Royal Engineers Transport reserve. Passenger lists record him as an Engineer travelling to and from from Argentina in the 1930s.
Headstone not located.
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Last updated 28th August 2016