First World War

Edwinstowe War Memorial The Unveiling Ceremony

On Sunday afternoon in the presence of a very large assembly, the Memorial Cross erected by the people of Edwinstowe to the men from the parish who laid down their lives in the war, was unveiled with solemn and simple ceremony. The unveiling was preceded by a service in the Church, which in itself was a tribute to the gallant dead, and an expression of the love and pride the people of Edwinstowe entertain for those who made the supreme sacrifice.

December 1920

Go to War Memorial to read more.

The Fallen World War 1 – Edwinstowe Parish.

“If I should die, think only this of me: That there’s some corner of a foreign field That is for ever England.” Rupert Brooke (1887-1915).

The memorial plaque in St. Mary’s Church Lady Chapel bears the inscription:

This Chapel was restored to the Glory of God and in proud memory of the men of Edwinstowe, Clipstone and Carburton who fell in the Great War, 1914-1918. (Names of Clipstone and Carburton men are included because, at the time, those two villages formed part of the ecclesiastical parish of Edwinstowe).

The following were Edwinstowe men:

Ernest Bentley, a Private in the Cheshire Regiment and then in the Highland Light Infantry, was killed in action on 8.8.1917 aged 24. His father George Thomas Bentley. His wife was Monzella (née Simpson) Bentley  He lived at ‘Little John Cottage and was a wagon maker. His wife lived on until 1960. His death is recorded on a gravestone in the churchyard.

Some of our readers are aware of the anguish endured by Monzella Bentley when, for over forty years, she didn’t know where her brave husband, Ernest, was lying after his untimely death in 1917. Their daughter, Violet, and her husband, Norman Boucher, were determined to find Ernest’s final resting place. They made unremitting enquiries into Ernest’s fate and, eventually, his grave was located in Ieper Cemetery in Belgium. Violet was further comforted when a photo of her father was discovered by John Hammond. Violet and Norman visited the cemetery, where it was established that Ernest had lost his life at Ypres. So, in 1986, sixty-nine years after his death, Ernest’s name was added to the village memorial. Thus, Violet was relieved of the darkness and despair which she had long shared with her mother and brother for many anxious years. Clarence Jenkinson Belfield, a Private with the 21st Battalion, King’s Royal Rifle Corps, died in September, 1916, aged 25 years, and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France. He was a relative of Bob Belfield and lived in Old Clipstone. This tribute wouldn’t be complete without reference to Budby which is still part of the wider parish of Edwinstowe. A tall stone cross, twelve feet high on a square plinth, and close to the A616, Ollerton to Worksop road, proclaims:

W. Branford, a Private with the 1st Battalion, Sherwood Foresters. He was the son of Walter and Ellen Branford. He was brother to Horace, Frederick, Mable, Albert and Ivy. In 1911 they lived on Town (High) Street Edwinstowe. He was a groom and later a baker. He died on 27.10.1918, (2 weeks before the end of the war) and is buried in Hautmont Communal Cemetery, Nord, France. Further details at this link NCC Role of Honour

Norman Bowyer,Son of Benjamin E. G. Bowyer and the late Hannah Bowyer, of West Lane, Edwinstowe. He is accorded the initials H. H. on the plaque. A Private in the East Yorkshire Regiment, he was killed in action on 24.10.1917, aged 19.

Arthur Pinder, Royal Flying Corps. He was an Air Mechanic 1st Class. Sidney was the son of George and Elizabeth Pinder at Lidgett House,  later of The Crown Hotel Wells-next-the-Sea Norfolk. He was brother to Georgina and Frances May as well as Sidney who died in action – see below. He died in hospital on 1.7.1917, aged 33. He was born in Edwinstowe. In the 1911. His family lived at Lidgett House and he was a domestic chauffeur. His father worked as a pyrotechnician and had a firework factory on Sandy Lane.

Sidney Reuben Pinder, a Lieutenant in the Royal Flying Corps. Sidney was the son of George and Elizabeth Pinder at Lidgett House, later of The Crown Hotel Wells-next-the-Sea Norfolk. He was brother to Georgina and Frances May as well as Arthur who died in action – see above. He was killed in action at Marquillies, Belgium, on 19.2.1918, aged 29. Arthur’s and Sidney’s names appear on a headstone in Edwinstowe churchyard, along with the name of Gunner Wilfred Dennis (killed in action at Grenway, Belgium, aged 36), who had married their sister, Georgina Pinder.

Frederick Parsons, Lincolnshire Regiment, was killed in Gallipoli, Eastern Turkey, in the Dardanelles campaign, on 9.8.1915, aged 20. He was the son of John and the late Sarah Ann Parsons of Mansfield Road. His name appears on a headstone in the churchyard, along with the names of his mother and father, with the inscription, ”Peace, perfect peace.”

Fred’s death as recorded in Parish Magazine October 1915:

News was received through H. Rabbitt from thee Dardanelles at the end of August, that Fred Parsons had been killed in action. This sad news was confirmed by the War Office at the beginning of September, Fred was of a bright, cheerful disposition, popular with his companions and a very young yet, promising soldier. He was one of those who readily volunteered for service, when his country needed him, and whose name and memory must ever be honoured by us. We must deeply sympathise with Mr. Parsons and his daughters in their sad bereavement. Harry Parsons, his elder brother, joined the Police at the outbreak of war.

George William Coupe, he was son of William, a railway plate layer, and Edith Coupe, of East Lane. He was sister to Edith. He was a driver in the 179th Inf. Bde., Army Service Corps formerly Leicestershire Regiment. He died on 5.11.1918, aged 19 on active service at Ramleh, Palestine. His name appears on his parents’ gravestone.

Simon Harrison, He was son of Mrs. Hannah Harrison, of East Lane and lived on Town (High) Street with his elder sister, May, and younger brothers Willie and Sidney. Before his call up he was a farm worker. He was a Lance Corporal in the Sherwood Foresters. He died on 27.4.1917, aged 20.

Ernest Richard Dorsey, He was the son of Richard and Ruth Dorsey, of Edwinstowe; husband of Louisa Dorsey, of 80, Seville Place, Strand Rd., Dublin. He joined the 733rd Coy. Labour Corps formerly Royal Army Medical Corps R.A.M.C. He died on 2.11.1918, aged 33, 9 days before the end of the war.

Walter Rabbitt, a Private with the 11th Battalion, Sherwood Foresters, died on 8.10.1918. He was the son of Joseph and Maggie Rabbitt and the brother of Ephraim (killed in action 25.4.1917 aged 20 see below), and Lewis Rabbitt. In 1911 they lived at Mill Lane and later 7 Hazel Grove. He is buried in the Doingt Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France.

Ephraim Rabbitt, a Corporal in the 8th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry, died on 25.4.1917 aged 21. He was the son of Joseph and Maggie Rabbitt and the brother of Walter (killed in action 8.10.1918 see above), and Lewis Rabbitt. In 1911 they lived at Mill Lane and later 7 Hazel Grove. and is buried in Bucquoy Road Cemetery, Ficheux, Pas de Calais, France.

Frank Rabbitt, a Private with the 1st Battalion, Sherwood Foresters, died on 8.7.1916, aged 29.

Harry Rabbitt, son of William and Maria Rabbitt and brother to William, Arthur, Theresa, Ida and Ivy Rabbitt. In 1911, they were living at Kirkstall Lodge, High Street, Edwinstowe. He was a Labourer in Woods. He joined the 9th Bn. Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment)  Further details at this link NCC Role of Honour

James William Creamer, a Lance-Corporal with the 1st/3rd Battalion, Sherwood Foresters, who died on 17.10.1918, and is buried in Fresnoy le Grand Communal Cemetery Extension, Aisne, France;

Harry Deakin, a Private with the 10th Battalion, Sherwood Foresters, who died on 14.12.1915 of wounds in Paris, and is commemorated on the Menin Gate, Ypres, Belgium;

E. Estrop, a Private with the 2nd Battalion, Sherwood Foresters, who died on 1.7.1917, and is buried in Loos British Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France;

C. Dumbarton, a Private with the 66th Auxiliary Patrol Company, R.A.S.C., who died on 11.7.1917, and is buried in Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, Nord, France; 

Bernard Rodgers, died on the way to the coast of India.

William Horace Allcock, He was the son of John and Eliza Allcock of Clipstone. 2nd Bn Lincolnshire Regiment also on Thiepval Memorial, Somme.  Died 4.3.1917.

William Henry Little,  son of William Henry and Gertrude Little of London. His wife was Florence May (née Lowe) of  Belper Derbyshire. grocer at Edwinstowe Co-op. He d3.8.1917 aged 30. His name is also entered at Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium.

Clarence Jenkinson Belfield, son of John & Mary Ellen Belfield. A brother Horace Edgar Belfield. In 1911, they farmed at Clipstone. Mrs. Belfield later moved to the Dog and Duck public house in Clipstone. We was a rifleman in 21st Bn King’s Royal Rifle Corps. He name is also on Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France. He died 17 .9.1916.

His name is also on Portsmouth Naval Memorial Hampshire.

Retford Times, 2nd November 1916 reported;

“In grateful memory of those men from this parish who gave their lives in the Great War.”

Cooper, G. Gratton, J. Knight, * G. Robinson, F. Watkinson. H. Widdowson.

Unaccountably, the name of Private E.G. Mendham, Machine Gun Corps, who died on 12.2.1919, aged 24, is missing. He is commemorated in Edwinstowe churchyard by a gravestone, with a carved crown and crossed rifles. He was born in Budby, the son of Albert and Adah Mendham.

* Private John Knight of the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, the only child of John and Jane Knight of Budby, died, aged 21, as a prisoner of war in Germany and was interred in Berlin Southwestern Cemetery.          

D.W.  – Acorn Magazine Article

reported in The Parish magazine October 1915 The following men have recently been wounded:-   E. Estrop. W. Fletcher, G. Hill, G. F. Hutton, R. Reavill.

The Choristers who sang before King Edward V111 – Rufford Abbey, September 18th 1907

Back Row:  F. Schamach, W Rabbitt, H. Lees, A. Rabbitt, F. Rabbitt

Front Row:  J. Kitchen, S. Parsons, W. Lees, G. Gutteridge, F. Levick (Organist), E. Gouk, T. Musgrove, W. G. Moore, H. Rabbitt