Great War Memorials - Surnames N

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NASH, George Stanley (Revised 17/09/2010)
NATHAN, John (Revised 28/01/2015)
NEVES, William Henry (Revised 05/07/2010)
NEVILL, Ernest,
NEVILLE, Edwin Thomas (Revised 13/01/2015)
NEWMAN, Victor Horold (Revised 13/01/2015)
NICHOLSON, Cuthbert W (Updated 22/03/2014)
NORRINGTON, Raymond (Revised 05/01/2019)
NORTHEY, William (Updated 23/10/2014)
NUTTMAN, George William (Revised 03/06/2013)
If you are looking for someone whose name starts with a different letter please try:




NASH George Stanley, Rifleman. 5/4997.

1st Battalion King's Royal Rifle Corps (KRRC).
Killed in action 10 March 1915, aged 17 years 6 months.

George's inscription on the Le Touret memorial to the missing.
George's inscription on the Le Touret memorial to the missing.
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

George Stanley Nash was born on 17 September 1897 (GRO reference: Dec 1897 Epsom 2a 3) at 8 Diceland Road, Banstead Surrey, the son of William George and Amelia Kate (a.k.a Minnie) Nash (nee Feist). His parents had married in the Croydon Registry Office on 11 October 1896. When George was born his father stated his occupation as a cricket field groundsman.

Before he was married, George's father William, aged 19½, enlisted as a Militia Man on 18 June 1889 into the 3rd Battalion East Surrey Regiment as Private 4026. After serving for 172 days he paid £1 to be discharged. Apparently a militia man, if no wars were being fought at the time, could, before three months elapsed since signing up, pay to be discharged. He re-enlisted into the KRRC on 2 June 1891 and was discharged on 1 June 1903, having served in South Africa between 29 November 1900 and 21 March 1903. Consequently he was not with his family when the 1901 census was taken.

In the 1901 census George was boarding at 23, Morland Road, Sutton with his 25 year old mother Amelia and one year old sister Elsie. In May that year George's brother Eric William was born in Sutton, but may have died later that year in Brighton.

Map showing the location of Mansard Rd
Map showing the location of Mansard Rd
Taken from a WW2 ARP map

In the 1911 census the family lived at 4, Mansard Road, Epsom. George's 41 year old father was working as a coachman. His mother Amelia, aged 35 stated that she had given birth to four children but that only two were still living, George and his sister Elsie. Also living there were a niece and nephew of the head of the family, Irene Feist and Eric Hayward respectively, and a boarder George Burch.

George's siblings were listed on his and his father's military records (circa 1917) as Elsie born 1 July 1900, Kenneth John born on 3 October 1911, Ivy May born on 18 June1914, and an adopted brother, Eric Alfred (Hayward) Nash, born on 5 June 1907. Another brother, Ronald was born in 1921.

On 29 August 1914, nine days before his 17th birthday, George attested in Kingston upon Thames, signing on for six years. He stated that he was a shop porter and that his religion was C of E. His medical report shows that he was 5 foot 5½ inches tall, weighed 105lbs, had a 33½ chest with a 2 inch expansion, hazel coloured eyes and black hair and that he had 6/6 vision in both eyes. Two days later on 31 August 1914 he arrived in Sheerness to receive drill as a rifleman in the 5th Battalion KRRC.

On 2 February 1915, just 156 days after attesting, George was sent with the 2nd Battalion KRRC to join the BEF in France, and the next day was posted to the 1st Battalion. 37 days later, on 10 March, he was reported as 'missing, but presumed to be killed in action' in Givenchy France.

George's battalion was ordered to attack German positions at Givenchy on 10 March 1915, and spent the six days before the attack in preparation. The main objective of the higher command for 10 March was Neuve Chapelle, about four miles to the north. The 1st Battalion KRRC were to mount a diversionary attack at Givenchy to stop German reinforcements being moved north to Neuve Chapelle. The diversion cost the lives of 141 men from the battalion including George who was killed in action.

Out of his 17½ years George had served a total of 194 days for his King and country before being killed. He has no known grave, so is commemorated on the Le Touret Memorial to the missing, France.

George's father William joined/re-attested in to the East Surrey Reserve on 7 November 1914. Six weeks before George was killed, William was transferred, on 27 January 1915, to the KRRC, stating that his occupation was groom, and that he had previously served for 12 years in the 3rd Battalion KKRC. He was quickly promoted later that year to the rank of Sergeant, but after three years service, on 26 January 1918 he was discharged as no longer fit for military service.

George's medals were received by his mother, Mrs A K Nash; 1914-15 Star on 3 May 1919, Victory on 6 September 1921 and British War on 26 ?? 1921.

The St. Martin's Roll of Honour states that "GEORGE STANLEY NASH, was killed in action in France on 10th March 1915".


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NATHAN John, Private. 35803.

9th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment.
Died 5 January 1919, aged 38.

John Nathan
John Nathan
Image courtesy of Dee Redmond. © 2015

John Nathan was born in Aldgate, East London on 10 March 1881 (GRO reference: Jun 1881 Whitechapel 1c 333) to Henry and Maria Nathan (nee Newson). His parents had both declared to be aged 19 when they married on 17 August 1863 in St. Marks church Goodman's Fields, Tower Hamlets. They had six known children.

NameBorn - DiedNotes
Rosa/RoseBorn: 1868 Whitechapel
Died: 26 April 1946
Married George Dyke 18 March 1889 All Saints church, Walworth. Father Henry recorded as a deceased boot maker
Walter/WilliamBorn: c1874 Whitechapel 
CarolineBorn: 1876 WhitechapelMarried Alfred Arthur Moron 26 December 1897 St. Philips church, Lambeth
Raphael/RalphBorn: 1878Married Alice Louise Keeping 21 October 1901 St. Mary's church, Newington
JohnBorn: 10 March 1881 Whitechapel 
EstherBorn: 1883 Whitechapel 

In the 1881 census the family lived at 4 Johns Place, Whitechapel. John's father Henry is shown as a 27 year old general dealer. However, I believe he was actually nearer 36. His mother Maria is also shown as aged 27, but she was, I believe, nearer 38. There were four siblings, Rose aged 13, Walter (shown as William in 1891) aged 7, Caroline aged 5 and Raphael aged 2.

John's sister Esther was born in 1883 and although no death record has been found, it appears that John's father died or disappeared sometime after her conception but before his daughter Rose's marriage in 1889.

However, John's 23-year-old sister Rose appears with her family under her maiden name when the 1891 census was taken.

In 1891 the family lived at 10 Devonshire Street, Lambeth. John's mother, now a 45 year old widow, recorded as 'Mother' of the family rather than 'Head', was earning a living employed as a wardrobe dealer, and another sister had been born, Esther aged 8. Also, quite significantly there was a lodger in the house, a 28 year old poultry costermonger called Frank Hyde.

By the time the 1901 census was taken, the family lived at 37 Lavender Sweep, Battersea. Frank Hyde is shown as the 42 year old head of the household, and Maria aged 54 is shown as his wife, but I have found no marriage record. John and brother Ralph were both builders' labourers. Sister Esther, now aged 17, also lived there.

Aged 28, John Nathan married 20-year-old spinster Mary Ann Gardner on 14 March 1904 at St. Mary's Parish Church, Newington. At the time of their marriage they were both living at 24 New Street, Newington. They had five children:

NameBorn - BaptisedNotes
Rose SabinaBorn 2 April 1904 in Blackfriars. Baptised 5 June 1904 Christ Church, Southwark. Address: 8 Scoresby Street, Southwark. John was working as a horse keeper.
JohnBorn 7 November 1906. Baptised on 2 December 1906 in Christ Church, Epsom. Address: Ivy Cottage, Hook Road, Epsom. John was working as a window cleaner.
Miriam/MaryBorn 2 April 1909. Baptised Mary Nathan on 25 April 1909 in Christ Church, Epsom. Address: 227 Hook Road, Epsom.
GeorgeBorn 18 November 1911. Baptised 17 December 1911 St. Barnabas church Epsom. Address: 227 Hook Road, Epsom.
HelenBorn 7 February 1913. Baptised 30 March 1913 St. Barnabas church Epsom. Address: 227 Hook Road, Epsom.

When the 1911 census was taken, John's married sister Rose and his brother-in-law George Dyke were living at 159 Hook Road, Epsom. They had been married for 23 years but had never had any children. George was running a window cleaning business and it seems likely that he employed John as a window cleaner. John was living with his family along the road at 227 Hook Road.

John's mother Maria was aged 64 (giving her a birth year of 1847) and living with 48-year-old Francis Hyde at 6 Bolwell Terrace, Bolwell Street, Lambeth. They claimed to have been married for 17 years with no children. No marriage record has been found.

On 15 March 1915 John attested in Kingston into the Army Veterinary Corps. He had been medically examined on 9 March, when he gave his age as a very precise 34 years and 364 days. He was a small man at 5 feet 5½ inches tall, weighing 126lbs, with a chest measurement of 37 inches and an expansion of 5¼ inches. He had vaccination marks received during infancy, physical development described as fair, but only 6/9 vision in both eyes. He lived at 227 Hook Road, Epsom and his occupation was horse keeper

John's army rank was also Horse Keeper when he embarked at Southampton on 4 June 1916. He disembarked at Le Havre the next day. He had not been in France for long before being admitted to 137 Field Ambulance on 31 July 1916, then on the same day to 1 Casualty Clearing Station. He was then transferred on 2 August to 13 Stationery Hospital, returning to duty on 15 August. He was again admitted to hospital on 22 August rejoining his unit on 6 September. Unfortunately his surviving records do not tell us why he was admitted to hospital.

John's rank changed from Horse Keeper to Private on 30 January 1917, presumably when he transferred to the 9th Battalion York and Lancaster Regiment. The 9th York and Lancasters were in 70th Brigade 23rd Division, and were sent to the join the Italian campaign in November 1917.

John survived the war but a telegram brought the sad news that he had died in Italy of influenza on 5 January 1919, and is buried in plot 10, row D, grave 2 at Montecchio Precalcino Communal Cemetery, Northern Italy.

On 24 June 1919 Mrs Nathan, at 227 Hook Road, Epsom received notification that she was to receive a weekly pension of 37/11 (in decimal currency £1.90) in respect of herself and her 5 children.

Then on 14 July 1919 she was asked to acknowledge receipt of her husband's personal property. In due course she received his British War medal and Victory medal as well as her plaque and scroll commemorating his death.

John's widow married Henry Bentley in 1924.


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NEVES William Henry, Private. 535234.

1/15th Battalion London Regiment (Prince of Wales' Own Civil Service Rifles).
Killed in Action 23 March 1918, aged 19.

Williams Neves
Williams Neves
Image courtesy of Peter Collins, Sutton Grammar School Archivist

William Henry Neves was born on 5 December 1898 (GRO reference: Mar 1899 Dover 2a 1017) to Stephen and Rosa Annie Neves (nee Neame).

In the 1901 census the family lived at 51, Odo Road, Dover. William's father Stephen, was a 29 year old carpenter/joiner, and his mother Rosa was 28. They had married in 1896.

By the 1911 census the family had moved to 116, East Street, Epsom. William's father was still working as a carpenter, and he had two siblings, Hilda Mary aged 9 and Victor Ernest aged 3. His mother Rosa stated that she had given birth to four children and that three were still living.

William had two siblings, Hilda Mary born in Dover in 1901 and Victor Ernest born in Epsom in 1908. So, presumably the family moved to Epsom some time between 1901 and 1908. William attended the Sutton County School (now Sutton Grammar School for Boys), and he is commemorated on their war Memorial.

William attested in Epsom on 28 November 1916, just seven days before his eighteenth birthday, was immediately placed on the reserve, and was mobilised on 21 February 1917. He was 5 feet 5 inches tall, weighed 126 lbs, had a chest measurement of 34 inches with an expansion of 3 inches. His eye sight was not good without glasses, only 6 out of 18 in both eyes, nevertheless he was passed as A4, which meant he would be A1 by the time he reached the legal age of 19 to be sent overseas to fight. His occupation was as a clerk, and he lived at 116, East Street, Epsom.

William was sent to France on 18 December 1918 and served as a Lewis gunner in "D" Company, 1/15 London Regiment, which was in the 140th Brigade, 47th (London) Division.

On 21 March 1918 William's Battalion were in reserve trenches about two miles behind the front line in the Flesquières salient. The Flesquières salient was formed at the end of the battle of Cambrai in November 1917. The Germans began an immense bombardment at 4-15am on the 21 March at the commencement of the 'Kaiserschlact', their last desperate bid to win the war before the Americans arrived in force. Where William's unit was entrenched the Germans did not attack in force with ground troops, but sent out small fighting patrols. Further north and south this was not the case, and large amounts of territory was overrun by the enemy.

By the evening of 22 March the Battalion's situation was critical, they were in danger of being encircled by enemy troops, and had to fall back to the third defensive line.

By dawn on 23 March the Battalion had withdrawn to half dug trenches called 'Dessart Ridge Switch', just west of the Metz-Fins road. This was not a good position and was soon under attack. "D" Company was on the extreme right and was left exposed when the troops to their right withdrew. They were soon surrounded and were ordered to charge the enemy machine guns as this was the only chance they had of getting out. The charge was unsuccessful and the survivors crawled back to their trench. By 4.30pm the whole of "D" Company was lost, either killed or taken prisoner.

Initially William was reported as missing on 23 March, but later Corporal L Cropley stated that he had seen him killed in action. On 22 and 23 March, 40 men from William's Battalion were killed. William is buried in plot X D 5 in Assevillers New British Cemetery. This cemetery was started after the war and contains the remains of men exhumed from many other small cemeteries nearby.

William was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

William's Medals Front
William's Medals Back
William's Medals Inscription
Williams medals - front, back and inscription
Images courtesy of Glenn Roberts © 2010

The following appeared in the Friday 26 July 1918 edition of The Epsom Advertiser:
Epsomian Killed in Action. Private W.H. Neves, of 116, East Street, Epsom, reported missing a number of weeks ago, is now stated by Corporal L. Cropley, who was in the same platoon, to have been killed during fighting on March 23rd. The Epsom Brotherhood, of which Pte. Neves was a member, passed a resolution of sympathy with his mother on Sunday. Fourteen members of the Brotherhood have lost their lives during the war, four are prisoners, and one is missing.
Corporal L. Cropley, son of Mr. James Cropley, a member of the firm of Cropley Bros. builders, is a prisoner of war.
William attended Sutton Grammar School. The following is an extract from the school magazine 'The Suttonian':
At the school from 1911 to 1916. Joining the Civil Service Rifles on February 21st, 1917, he trained at Winchester and crossed to France a week before Christmas of the same year. He was killed in action at Cambrai on March 23rd, 1918.
William's headstone in the Assevillers New British Cemetery
William's headstone in the Assevillers New British Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

The St Martin's Church Roll of Honour states that "WILLIAM HENRY NEVES, was killed in action at Cambrai on 23rd March 1918".

He is also remembered on the Sutton Grammar School War Memorial.


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NEVILL Ernest, Private SR/7223

2nd Bn, Middlesex Regt.
Died of wounds 2 October 1915, aged N/K

Pending further research this is what we have discovered about this person

2nd Bn, Middlesex Regt. Died of wounds in France or Flanders on 2 October 1915. (Listed on the Ashley Road Memorial, Epsom).

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NEVILLE Edwin Thomas, Private. PS/8588.

2nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers (RF).
Killed in Action 1st July 1916, aged 31

E Neville's inscription
Edwin Thomas Neville was born on 10 May 1885 in Chelsham, Surrey (GRO reference: Jun 1885 Godstone 2a 186), the son of Edward and Jane Ann Neville (nee Wells). His parents married on 13 March 1881 in Chelsham, Surrey.

NameBorn - DiedNotes
John WellsBorn: 11 February 1882 Chelsham, Surrey
Died: 1956
Married Emily Emary 8 September 1912 St. Mary's church, Ewell
AnnieBorn: 1883 Chelsham, SurreyMarried Alfred Valentine Emary 1 May 1909 St. Mary's church, Ewell
Edwin ThomasBorn: 10 May 1885 Chelsham, Surrey
Died: 1 July 1916 France
Baptised 31 May 1885 St. Leonard's church, Chelsham
Bertha EllenBorn: 1886 Chelsham, SurreyBaptised 17 October 1886 St. Leonard's church, Chelsham
Ada JaneBorn: 1888 Chelsham, SurreyBaptised 26 February 1888 St. Leonard's church, Chelsham

When the 1891 census was taken Edwin aged 5 and his four siblings, John Wells (recorded as John William) aged 9, Anne aged 8, Bertha Ellen aged 4 and Ada Jane aged 3 were all living with their parents in 2 Chelsham Cottage, Chelsham, Surrey. His father was then working as a domestic labourer having previously worked as a groom. At some point after the census was taken the family moved to Old Malden, Surrey.

From there the family moved to Gibraltar in West Ewell, Surrey. Edwin and his older brother John first attended Ewell Boys School on 16 July 1897, having both previously been at a school in Old Malden. His brother left school on 24 May 1895 and Edwin on 31 March 1898, both to work in gardens.

In 1901, with the exception of Anne, Edwin and his family were living in Heatherside Road West Ewell. His father was working, as a domestic coachman, while his brother John was a general labourer and Edwin a domestic servant. Sister Annie was working as a kitchen maid for John Bridge and his family at Ewell Court.

Edwin was working as a gardener when the 1911 census was taken. Only he and his brother John were living with their parents at 'Chelsham Cottage', Heatherside Road West Ewell. His father filled in the census form stating that he and his wife of 30 years had had 5 children and that they were all still living. He also stated that he was a farm labourer while his wife was a laundress working at home and his son John was a carman's carter for a contractor.

On 2 August 1915 Edwin, aged 30, married 24 year old spinster Isabella Mary Barrett in Christ Church, Epsom. There were no known children.

Edwin enlisted in Epsom, and joined the 2nd Battalion RF, which was in the 86th Brigade, 29th Division. On Saturday the 1 July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the 2nd Battalion RF were ordered to attack the Hawthorn Redoubt.

For many weeks the 252nd Tunnelling Company Royal Engineers (RE) had been tunnelling under "No Man's Land" towards the German lines and had placed 40,000 pounds of ammonal (high explosive) under the Hawthorn Redoubt. At 7.20 am, ten minutes before the main attack started, the mine was detonated. The moment was famously filmed by the cine photographer Geoffrey Malins, and has become an iconic scene from the battle. The explosion caused a huge crater, and the 2nd Battalion RF moved to occupy it, and the ground to the left, but made no progress. Detonating the mine 10 minutes before the attack commenced proved to be a mistake, as the Germans then knew for certain that the attack was imminent. Whilst British troops had managed to occupy the near lip of the crater, albeit with casualties, the Germans had had time to occupy the far lip of the crater. The following is an extract from the Official History:
     At 7.20 A.M. the mine under Hawthorn Redoubt was blown, the heavy barrage lifted, and the Stokes mortars in the advanced emplacements, and four in the sunken lane in No Man's Land, to which two companies of the 1/Lancashire Fusiliers pushed forward, opened a hurricane fire on the German front trench, if any were needed, that the assault was about to take place. Under cover of this fire, the leading companies of the assaulting infantry began to leave their trenches and form up in No Man's Land. Two platoons of the 2/Royal Fusiliers, with four machine guns and four Stokes mortars, rushed forward to occupy the mine crater. They reached the near lip, not without a number of casualties, and at once came under heavy machine-gun and rifle fire from the German trenches on either flank and from the far lip of the crater, which the Germans had immediately occupied.
     The explosion of the mine ten minutes before the assault undoubtedly prejudiced the chances of success, as it warned the Germans to be on the alert. It immediately brought down the enemy barrage, and within five minutes it seemed that every machine gun along the front was shooting incessantly. The divisions were caught forming up. Even before the heavy barrage lifted at 7.20 A.M., the Germans appeared in the front line; and after that hour, with hardly a British shell or bullet striking the parapets, most of them fired standing in the remains of the trenches. Others sprang out to the front, some into shell holes, rifles and machine guns in hand. They received the British infantry lines with very heavy fire directly these tried to advance across No Man's Land to their assault position one hundred yards from the German front line; whilst the party on the far lip of the mine crater, armed with machine guns and light trench mortars, simply shot right and left as it pleased.

By the end of the day many had been killed and no ground had been taken. The attack cost the lives of 163 men in the 2nd Battalion RF, either killed or dying of wounds, including Edwin who has no known grave and is commemorated on The Thiepval Memorial to the missing.

Trench map
Trench map, Click image to enlarge.

He is locally remembered on four memorials: the Dipping Well memorial; St. Mary's church memorial; All Saints church memorial and Ewell Boys' School memorial.

Edwin was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.


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NEWMAN Victor Harold, Able Seaman. 239679.

Royal Navy (RN), HMS Tipperary.
Killed in Action 1 June 1916, aged 24.

Able Seaman Newman's inscription at Portsmouth Naval Memorial

Portsmouth Naval Memorial

Victor Harold Newman was born on 15 March 1892 (GRO reference: Jun 1892 Havant 2b 412a) in Rowland Castle, Havant, Hampshire to Herbert William and Elizabeth Jane Newman (nee Cornick). His parents had married in 1882 in the registration district of Christchurch, Hampshire and had six known children. Victor's second name is spelt 'Harold' on all documents scrutinised, with the exception of the registration of his birth, which spells his name 'Horold'. I suspect this may be a transcription error.

NameBorn - DiedNotes
Leonard Herbert Charles WilliamBorn: 1883 Boscombe, Hampshire
Died: 1950
Married Janet May Dyer, 1904 Epsom
Eva AnnieBorn: 1885 Bournemouth, Hampshire
Died: 1951 Suffolk
Married Edward Herbert Flatt, 1 February 1913, St. Mary's Ewell
Bertha SophiaBorn: 1888 Wimborne, DorsetMarried William Henry Taylor (Sergeant S.A.L.C.), 30 September 1918, St. Mary's Ewell.
Father was working as a hospital orderly
Victor HaroldBorn: 1892 Rowland Castle, Havant, Hampshire.
Died: 1 June 1916
Sidney or PercyBorn: c1894 Emsworth, HampshireNo birth record found for Sidney or Percy
Elsie MadelineBorn: 1896/7 Ewell1911 - working as a servant for the Corn family at 'Fairlight', London Road, Ewell

The 1891 census was taken on the night of 5 April 1891. Victor's parents and older siblings were living in 4 Woodbury Lane, Warblington, Hampshire. His father Herbert was aged 34 and working as a brickyard labourer to support his 27 year old wife and three children, Leonard aged 7, Eva aged 5 and Bertha aged 3. He also gave his place of birth as Freemantle, Western Australia. (Herbert's Australian birth record shows that he was the son of Charles and Sophia Newman. Sophia, who had been born in Clerkenwell, had by 1867 returned to England with her sons Charles and Herbert. In 1871 Sophia was recorded as a widow living in Chelsea with her two sons and daughter Alice who had been born in Chelsea c1867).

Victor first attended Ewell Boys School on 1 May 1900 having previously attending Ewell Infants School.

In the 1901 census the family was living at 'Gibraltar', which was a group of houses at the end of West Street, Ewell. Victor's father Herbert was a 'Clay worker', and incorrectly recorded as being born in Bournemouth. Victor had four siblings Eva aged 16, Bertha aged 13, Sidney aged 7 and Elsie Madaline aged 5. Looking at the birthplaces of Sidney (Emsworth), and Elsie Madaline (Ewell) the family probably moved to Ewell sometime between 1894 and 1896.

Victor's brother 'Percy' started at Ewell Boys School on 1 May 1902 having previously attending Ewell Infants School. His birthday was recorded as being 23 December 1894, so could this have been Sidney?

Although no record of the death of Victor's mother Elizabeth Jane has been found there is a record of 38 year old Elizabeth Martha Newman being buried in St. Mary's church graveyard on 1 July 1901. Victor's 46-year-old widowed father Herbert married 47-year-old spinster Emily Marshall on 1 August 1903 in St. Mary's church Ewell. He gave his deceased father as Charles Henry Newman, carter.

Victor left school on 23 February 1906 to work in the brickfields like his father, but his brother 'Percy' left school on 29 July 1908 after passing the Labour Examination.

Victor's RN service record shows that he joined the navy on 2 October 1909 at the age of 15 with the rank of 'Boy II'. His stated date of birth of 15 March 1891, instead of 1892 may have been a typo or an attempt to add a year to his age. On 15 March 1909 he signed on for 12 years and on 15 March 1910 was promoted to AB (Able Seaman).

The 1911 records Victor as aged 20 and an Able Seaman aboard H.M.S. Achilles, an armoured cruiser, which was docked at Spithead, Portsmouth. Victor's father was recorded as William Newman from Chelsea, London and was living with his second wife Emily and his 16 year old son Sydney in West Street, Ewell.

Victor was an Able Seaman aboard HMS Tipperary (a light Cruiser, Flotilla Leader, of some 1,737 tons, launched 5 March 1915) during the Battle of Jutland. The battle was fought on 31 May to 1 June 1916, when some 100 ships from the German High Seas Fleet clashed with 150 ships of the British Grand Fleet, the culmination of twenty years of naval rivalry. The German fleet lost 62,000 tons of shipping when 11 of their ships were sunk and 2,551 men killed. Whereas the British fleet lost 111,000 tons of shipping when 14 ships were sunk and 6,097 men killed.

H.M.S. Tipperary
H.M.S. Tipperary

At 11.20pm on 31 May H.M.S. Tipperary was struck by several shells and many were killed or wounded. An hour later she sunk, so Victor's death is recorded as being on 1 June 1916.

Victor has no grave but the sea and is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. Another local man, George Edward Baker, also died at Jutland serving on H.M.S. Black Prince.

He was awarded the 1915 Star, the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The CWGC states that he was the:
Son of Herbert Newman, of Lower West Street, Ewell, Epsom, Surrey.
Victor's father died aged 71 in 1929.


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NICHOLSON Cuthbert William, Sapper. 558263.

29th Division Signal Company Royal Engineers.
Killed in Action 30 November 1917, aged 26.

Cuthbert's headstone in the Gouzeaucourt New British Cemetery
Cuthbert's headstone in the Gouzeaucourt New British Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

Cuthbert William Nicholson was born in 1891 in Epsom (GRO reference: Jun 1891 Epsom 2a 25) to Cuthbert and Jane Nicholson (nee Bennett). Cuthbert's parents were married on 12 April 1884 in All Saints church, Banstead, and Cuthbert was baptised there on 28 June 1891.

In the 1891 census before Cuthbert was born, his parents lived at 24, Adelphi Road, Epsom. His father, also Cuthbert, was noted as a 38 year old carpenter from Durham, while his mother Jane, aged 33 came from Banstead. They had three boarders, William Attwood aged 19, a sorting clerk and telegraphist, Richard Hyde aged 19, a harness maker and Amy Chapman aged 74, a lady of independent means.

By 1901 the family had moved to 'Merrington', 98, Hook Road, Epsom. There were no siblings, and Cuthbert was destined to remain an only child. There were two boarders, Frank Taylor aged 24, a carpenter, and Frederick Watkins aged 28, a post office clerk and telegraphist. Cuthbert was to later become a first class telegraphist whilst serving in the Royal Engineers.

In 1911 the family lived at 110 Hook Road. Cuthbert aged 19 worked for the Post Office as a clerk. His father was still earning his living as a carpenter for the Kensington and Chelsea School on the Ewell and Banstead border.

Cuthbert's service papers survived the 1940 bombing but are badly burnt around the edges, water damaged, and therefore very difficult to read. He attested on 14 December 1914, in London into the Territorial Force, for '4 years' Service in the United Kingdom', joining the 1st London Reserve Signalling Company Royal Engineers as Sapper number 1702. The attestation paper was later over stamped with his new number 558263. He gave his address as Post Office Epsom, his religion as Church of England, and agreed to serve for the duration of the war.

His 'Medical Inspection Report' form dated 28 November 1914, notes his 'Apparent age' as 23, his height as 5 feet 6 ¾ inches, his chest measurement as 34 ½ inches with an expansion of 3 inches, and his vision and physical development as good.

Cuthbert's 'Military History Sheet' states that between the dates shown he was:

HOME December 1914 - 18 March 1915
MEDITERRANEAN EXPEDITIONARY FORCE (MEF)     19 March 1915 - 13 March 1916
BRITISH EXPEDITIONARY FORCE (BEF) 14 March 1916 - 30 November 1917 KIA

He underwent a test at a military workshop at Maresfield on 16 January 1915 and was declared a proficient telegraphist. Subsequently on 6 March 1915 he was graded as skilled, so was very good with Morse code.

On 17 March 1915 he married Marion Kate Moore, just two days before he sailed for Egypt. (Marion was born in 1890, but in Free BMD and Ancestry her name is spelt Marian). They had no children.

Cuthbert's medal card shows that the theatre of war he first entered was Egypt, on 30 March 1915. As he was with the 29th Division he would have seen action in Gallipoli, and was presumably wounded there because from his Army service papers, although badly damaged, it is possible to ascertain that on 3 July 1915 he was transferred from a hospital ship, to a hospital in Cairo, suffering from a gun shot wound to his right thigh.

After withdrawal from Gallipoli the 29th Division was next sent to fight in France, and Cuthbert was with them from 19 March 1916. On 12 May 1917 he made a simple will:
"In the event of my death I give the whole of my property to my wife Marion Kate Nicholson of the Endowed School, Highgate, Hawkhurst".
In both the 1891 and the 1901 census Marion lived at the school, where her father was a teacher. Possibly by 1916 she too was a teacher at the school or perhaps just living with her parents again.

The battle of Cambrai started on 20 November 1917, and is famed for the first use of massed tanks. Tanks had first been used on 15 September 1916 on the Somme, but relatively few were used, and were spread too thinly to force a breakthrough. The Cambrai battle was also novel because there was no preliminary bombardment. Four hundred and seventy six tanks were available, and the Germans were taken completely by surprise. So much so that they were pushed back some miles. The huge monstrous machines, which were flattening everything in their path, terrified many who then surrendered.

So great was the perceived British victory that Church bells were rung at home to proclaim the great event. However, celebrations were somewhat premature. Not only were the Germans taken by surprise, so were the British commanders who had no reserves available to make a total breakthrough.

On 30 November 1917 the Germans counter attacked and retook much of the ground they had lost, plus some ground that they did not hold previously. They took the village of Gouzeaucourt on 30 November but it was taken back the same day by the 1st Irish Guards.
2,718 men lost their lives on 30 November 1917 in 'France & Flanders' including Cuthbert William Nicholson. He was originally reported 'missing' but on 18 December 1917 was officially declared, killed in action on 30 November 1917. He is buried in Gouzeaucourt New British Cemetery, and has a special memorial at plot VIII. G. 11. that reads "Buried near this spot".

On 31 December 1917 Cuthbert's wife acknowledged receipt of a letter informing her of her husband's death. In the same letter she advised that her new address was 130, Rainham Road, Chatham. Despite this, letters were still sent to her old address at 134, Casewick Road, West Norwood.

Cuthbert's widow was awarded a pension of 13 shillings and 9 pence (68.75 pence in decimal money) commencing on 26 June 1918. The award was for her alone as they had no children. Previous to this she had received 12 shillings and 6 pence (62.5 pence in decimal money) separation allowance.

It seems that his widow married quite soon after Cuthbert's death. There is a marriage registered in Lambeth in the June 1918 quarter of Marion K Nicholson and Basil W Scott.

Cuthbert was awarded the 1915 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal. In addition to medals, the state also presented, to the next of kin, a bronze plaque and memorial scroll. Legally, Cuthbert's wife was his next of kin, and she was the only beneficiary in his will. By the time medals, plaques and scrolls were being distributed, his wife had remarried and moved away. Cuthbert's father wrote that he did not know her new married name, nor where she now lived, and that she would not appreciate or value them anyway. From the various pieces of charred and water damaged correspondence that survived it can be seen that the scroll and plaque were sent to his father, and it seems likely that his medals also went to his father eventually. Cuthbert was an only child, his wife had quickly remarried, and there had been no children, so his parents were the logical recipients of his mementos.

The CWGC states he was the "Son of Cuthbert and Jane Nicholson, of 110, Hook Road, Epsom, Surrey".

Cuthbert is commemorated on four memorials in the Borough, Ashley Road, the Epsom sorting office and two churches, Christ Church and St Barnabas.


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NORRINGTON Raymond, Rifleman. 551657.

1st/16th Battalion London Regiment (Queen's Westminster Rifles).
Killed in Action 16 August 1917, aged 20.

Raymond Norrington with his Father Edward
Raymond Norrington with his Father Edward
Image courtesy of Jeannette Norrington © 2009

Raymond Norrington was born in Epsom on 17 September 1896 (GRO reference: Dec 1896 Epsom 2a 24) to Edward and Edith Norrington (nee Constable) who had married in Lambeth 11 years earlier.

In the 1891 census, before Raymond was born, the family lived at 22 High Street, Epsom. Raymond's father Edward was a 30 year old butcher who employed staff to work with him in his butchers shop at 22 High Street Epsom. His mother, aged 29, was a bookkeeper. Both parents had been born in Cheam. Raymond had two siblings, Helena Margaret aged 4 (known a Nell), born on 19 August 1886 and Charles James aged 2, born on 21 August 1888, both having been born in Camberwell. The family had two boarders staying with them, both butcher's assistants, and they employed a domestic servant.

When the 1901 census was taken the family were still living in the High Street in Epsom, and Edward, was still plying his trade as a butcher shopkeeper, employing people. He was reputed to be a great judge of cattle and put his knowledge to good use in buying the very best cattle and sheep so that he could sell excellent meat. His slaughterhouse was at the rear of the shop. Another sibling had arrived, Alfred George aged 9 (known as Fred), born in Epsom on 6 June 1891. Raymond's maternal grandmother, Mary Constable aged 70, was also living with the family.

In 1911 the family was still living in Epsom High Street where Raymond's father still ran his butchers shop. Sister Helena now worked as a bookkeeper, brother Charles as a carpenter and builder, whilst brother Alfred was a student for the Civil Service. Raymond's grandmother, Mary Constable now 80, was still living with the family.

Raymond was a member of the Epsom Brotherhood, founded in 1909 by the Rev. Henry Atkinson. The Brotherhood movement, affiliated to the Congregational Church, was an organisation for all males in trade. Its remit was for Christian study and the moral welfare of local townspeople, and was open to all men irrespective of creed, politics or social position. It had charitable aims, and carried out projects in conjunction with Epsom's local authorities.

The Norrington Brothers (l to r) Alfred George, Raymond and Charles James
The Norrington Brothers (l to r) Alfred George, Raymond and Charles James
Image courtesy of Jeannette Norrington © 2009

Raymond enlisted in Westminster and served as a Rifleman in the 1st/16th Battalion London Regiment (Queen's Westminster Rifles), a territorial army unit. His initial service number was 4406, changed to 551657 when territorial army units were renumbered in early 1917. Unfortunately none of Raymond's service papers survived but his medal roll tells us that he went to France on 9 January 1916. From 10 February 1916 Raymond's battalion was in the 169th Brigade, 56th Division. The Surrey Recruitment Register tells us that Raymond's brother Alfred George served in the Machine Gun Corps.

At some point in early 1916 Raymond's battalion was held in isolation due to measles. He wrote to his parents on 16 March 1916 telling them that a few days ago he thought he was 'going to have another dose of the measles'.

Battle Field Map of Hooge (click to enlarge)
Battle Field Map of Hooge (click to enlarge)

On the 15 August 1917 Raymond's Battalion was in the line near Hooge, Belgium. The following is an extract from the war diary:
15th. In the evening the Battalion again went into the line in Brigade Reserve in trenches round Battn H.Q. at J.13.d.0.3. Shelling still heavy and continuous. "D" Company commanded by Capt. E. BRIMELOW, took up a position behind the JARGON SWITCH and were ordered to follow the fourth wave of the attack as "Moppers-up" to both attacking Battalions.
Casualties 3 O.R. Killed, 12 O.R. Wounded, 10 O.R. Sick.
16th. Zero Day. The Battalion was not called on during the day for any active part in the operations, except small carrying parties. At night the Battalion again moved into the line to relieve the L.R.B. With the exception of two Platoons of "A" Company, the whole Battalion was in the front line. "C" Company holding the forward posts. "D" Company during the operations had very little mopping up to do and eventually became involved with the forth wave of the attack and fell back later to the front line.
Casualties 2 Officers (2nd Lieut S. NORTH 19th London Regiment) and 16 O.R. Killed, 1 Officer (2nd Lieut .M. MACKLE 5th Border Regt) Died of Wounds, 4 Officers (2nd Lieut W.D. SMITH 21st London Regt, Lieut E. RIDEHALGH, 22nd London Regiment, 2nd Lieut E.E. ELLIS, 9h London Regt and Capt E. BRIMELOW) and 109 O.R. Wounded, 29 O.R. Missing, 3 O.R. Sick.
Raymond had been a pupil at Sutton County School (now Sutton Grammar School) from 1908 to 1911. Each term the school published a magazine called 'The Suttonian'. Extracts from the magazine were, in 1975, published in a booklet by A.E. Jones, called 'A Small School in the Great War'. The following is an extract from the booklet:
Raymond Norrington, according to The Suttonian, " is said to have been with some of his company, on the morning of the attack of August 16th last (1917), in a tunnel dug-out beneath the Menin Road. A heavy calibre shell landed on the top, smashing the place in completely. Most of the bodies were got out, but not all, owing to the situation of the place, and the fact that the other companies of the battalion had to move forward in support of the attack ".
Norrington later figured in the official lists as " missing, presumed dead".

On 16 August 1917, 28 men from the Queen's Westminster Rifles lost their lives including Raymond who was killed in action. He is commemorated on panel 54 of the Menin Gate at Ypres.

Raymond's inscription on Menin Gate at Ypres
Raymond's inscription on Menin Gate at Ypres
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2009

The following appeared in a local newspaper, probably the Epsom Herald:
      There is great anxiety as to what has befallen Pte. Raymond Norrington (Queen's Westminsters), son of Mr. E. Norrington, butcher, High-street, in consequence of the information contained in a letter sent to his parents by the Quartermaster-Sergeant of his Company, who, writing, says:--"I am taking the first opportunity to write to you concerning your son, who is reported missing during the last action on the 16th. The situation was very much confused owing to the very heavy shell fire. It appears from conversations with some of your son's comrades that he was badly wounded by a shell and was then assisted away, or that he was unfortunately killed when the Company next advanced. There is no one now in the Company who has seen him during the advance. They are all casualties. I have made very careful enquires, but cannot get any further information than that he was alive when his platoon advanced. There is, of course, a hope--a faint one--that he was carried off the field by some other regiment. Of course information of that nature takes some time to get through, especially when there is heavy fighting. I am more than sorry at the sad news. I knew your son very well, and also knew what a good type of boy and soldier he was, one of the best in the Company, and all the Company, including the N.C.O.'s were his friends. Such personal effects as he had left behind in his pack I have sent to you through the official channels. In conclusion, I wish to offer you my own sympathy and that of the Company as well. We have lost a good comrade, and you have lost a worthy and brave son. Should any further news come to hand, be assured I will acquaint you". Everyone who knows this popular young soldier is hoping that news will be received to remove the worst fears that can be entertained as to his fate. The letter may preclude any sanguine hopes, but it does not shut out all possibility of Pte. Norrington being still alive.
The CWGC records that he was the:
Son of Edward and Edith Norrington, of 11, Hyland's Road, Epsom.
Raymond was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The St Martin's Church Roll of honour states that:
RAYMOND NORRINGTON, was killed in action at Hooge in Belgium on the 16th August 1917.
Letters from Raymond to his mother, and other family members can be read here.

Norrington family gravestone
Raymond is remembered on his parents' grave in Epsom Cemetery. Grave M75
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2018

Raymond's mother Edith died on 27 July 1946, aged 87, and his father Edward died on 16 November 1950 aged 89. Both are buried in grave M75 in Epsom Cemetery.

Raymond's siblings:
      Charles James died in 1971, aged 82.
      Helena Margaret died 9 February 1973, aged 86.
      Alfred George died in 1976 aged 85.

He is also remembered on the Sutton Grammar School War Memorial.


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NORTHEY William, Major, DSO.

2nd Battalion Durham Light Infantry (DLI).
Died of Wounds 22 October 1914, aged 38.

William Northey
William Northey
Image Source: The Sphere

William Northey was born on 20 January 1876, in Chaddesden, Derbyshire (GRO reference: Mar 1876 Shadlow 7b 484) to the Reverend Edward William and Florence Elizabeth Northey (nee Honywood). William's father Edward, was born in Epsom in 1832, and died in Epsom in 1914 aged 82, at about the same time that William died. His mother Florence was born in Torquay, Devon in 1846, and died in 1928 also aged 82. They were married in 1867 in the Cranbrook District in Kent, and produced eleven children.

Name Born - Died Notes Married
Edward Born: June quarter 1868, Cockerham, Lancashire
Died: 1953 aged 85
Lt.Col KRRC. Later Major General Anna Evangeline Cloete, 1897
Florence Isabel Born: March quarter 1869, Cockerham, Lancashire
Died: 1941
  Frank Richardson, 1888. St Martins
Alfred Herbert Born: March quarter 1871, Long Lane, Derbyshire
Died September quarter 1871
Mildred Louisa Born: December quarter 1871, Long Lane, Derbyshire
Died: 1922, Bristol aged 50
  Archie Stewart Buckle, 20 July 1892. St Martins
Charles Henry Born: June quarter 1873, Chaddesden, Derbyshire
Died: Pre 1902
Mary Born: December quarter 1874, Chaddesden, Derbyshire   Charles Malcolm Cumming, 1 March 1905. Christ Church
William Born: 20 January 1876, Chaddesden, Derbyshire
Died: 22 October 1914, France
  Violet Jane Ferguson, 1905
Hilda Caroline Born: September quarter 1877, Chaddesden, Derbyshire
Died: 1903, St Pancras aged 26;
buried Epsom cemetery
Gwendolen Born: June quarter 1879, Chaddesden, Derbyshire
Died: 1939, Epsom aged 60;
buried Epsom cemetery
Muriel Born: September quarter 1880, Epsom Baptised Christ Church 29 June 1880 Oswald Birley Harter (Duram Light Infantry), 23 April 1903. Christ Church
Francis Vernon Born: December quarter 1881, Epsom
Died: 1911, Epsom aged 29
buried Epsom cemetery
Baptised Christ Church 18 December 1881  

In the 1871 census before William was born, the family lived at Long Lane Vicarage, Trusley, Derbyshire, where William's father Edward was the Vicar of Christ Church. William's three siblings, Edward, Florence and Alfred are recorded. The family were able to employ five servants. From 1872 to 1879 William's father was the Vicar of Chaddesden, Derbyshire.

By 1881 the family was living at Woodcote Green, Epsom, where William was a five year old scholar. His father, the Reverend Edward Northey was a 'clergyman without cure of souls' (having no parish of his own). William's 65 year old grandmother, Mary Honywood was staying with them. The family employed 12 servants.

The 1891 census shows the family living at Woodcote House. The three boys, Charles, William and Francis are still in education, but no occupation is recorded for the girls. Although this is typical of the time, it is surprising with the Northey family as in the previous census the girls had been recorded as scholars. William's youngest brother, Francis Vernon, was named after his illustrious uncle who had died in the Battle of Gingindlovu, South Africa in the Zulu war of 1879. Visiting them was 22 year old Archie Stewart Buckle, a Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery, who in 1892 married William's sister Mildred. The family then employed 11 servants.

In 1901 the family still lived in Woodcote House, but only four sisters remained and brother Francis, who was an apprentice electrical engineer. William, who joined the DLI in 1895 was away in South Africa fighting in the Boer War. They sill employed 11 servants.

In 1905 William married Violet Jane Ferguson, probably in India, their first son William Edward was born in Madras, India on 22 October 1909. Their only other child, Denys Vernon was born in Epsom on 12 August 1910 and was baptised in Christ Church on 16 September 1910. At the time they were living in Stanley House, West Street, Epsom, prior to Captain William Northey taking up a place at Staff College Camberley in September 1910.

William passed the qualifying exam at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst in July 1895 for a commission in the DLI and became a Lieutenant in December 1896. He fought in the second Anglo-Boer War from November 1899 to November 1902, being present at the relief of Ladysmith and the battle of Colenso. He was adjutant with the 13th Battalion Mounted Infantry from November 1900 to March 1902. He was twice mentioned in Despatches (London Gazette, 8 February 1901 and 29 July 1902) and was awarded the DSO (London Gazette 19 April 1901). He was also awarded the Queen's South Africa medal with five clasps and the King's South Africa medal with two clasps. There is a Northey listed on the ship Assaye that sailed from South Africa to Bombay in October 1902, and it is thought that this may be William.

By 1911 William, his wife Violet and their two sons, were living in Lansdowne Park Road, Camberley, Surrey, the only people living in the road. William was described as a Captain in the Army, and they employed three servants. Williams parents still lived at Woodcote House, stating they had been married for 43 years, and had produced 11 children of whom 3 had died. Although all their children had now left their childhood home, they still found employment for 9 servants.

When Britain went to war on 4 August 1914, William had already served 19 years in the Army. His Battalion, the 2nd Battalion DLI, was in the 18th Brigade, 6th Division. On 7 September 1914 the Battalion marched from Cambridge to Newmarket, and in two trains travelled to Southampton. William sailed from Southampton on the 'City of Benares' and arrived in St Nazaire, France on 10 September 1914. Then another train journey to Coulommiers, and then into billets at St Germain. By 15 September 1914 the Battalion had reached Chateau Thiery. The Battalion's first encounter with the enemy came on 20/21 September at Troyon when the Battalion lost 55 men. Between 20 September and 31 October 1914 the Battalion lost 129 other ranks killed.

On 12 October the Battalion was moved in French motor lorries to Hazebrouck, and then on 13 October it marched to Vieux Berquin, and on 17 October marched to Bois Grenier. The War Diary for 18 October reads as follows:
Ordered to make a demonstration to test enemy's strength at LA VALLEE, at 3.45pm commenced to attack ENNETTERES, attack successful.
Casualties; officers wounded Captain W. NORTHEY, DSO, Lieut N. CONANT.
     O.R. 4 killed, 74 wounded, 29 missing.
William was transported back to Boulogne, where there were large hospital facilities, but he died from his wounds on 22 October 1914 and was buried in plot I. A. 6. Boulogne East Cemetery. He was promoted Major from 21 October, the promotion being gazetted after his death.

William's headstone in Boulogne East Cemetery
William's headstone in Boulogne East Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2010

The St Martin's Church Roll of Honour states that:
MAJOR WILLIAM NORTHEY, D.S.O. was in the Army before the war. He died in Hospital in Boulogne on the 18th (sic) October 1914, of wounds received during the retreat from Mons. He was the fourth son of the Rev. Edward William Northey of Woodcote House, Epsom.
William was awarded the 1914 Star, British War medal and the Victory medal.

William Northey's Medals
William Northey's Medals
Image courtesy of Warwick & Warwick Ltd © 2014

William Northey's Bronze Penny
William Northey's Bronze Penny
Image courtesy of Warwick & Warwick Ltd © 2014

Front and back of William's medal card
Front and back of William's medal card.
Image courtesy of (Link opens in a new window)
Copyright 2010, The Generations Network, Inc. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.
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He is commemorated in the 'Roll of the Sons And Daughters of the Anglican Church Clergy Throughout the World And of the Naval And Military Chaplains of the Same Who Gave Their Lives in the Great War, 1914-1918'.

William is not only commemorated on the Epsom town memorial but on three churches, St. Martins, Christ Church and St. Barnabas.


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NUTTMAN George William, Private. G/6287989.

13th Battalion Royal Fusiliers.
Died 2 May 1917, aged 35.

George's headstone in the Douai Communal Cemetery
George's headstone in the Douai Communal Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013

George William Nuttman was born in Sutton in 1882 (GRO reference: Sep 1882 Epsom 2a 13) to Charles and Elizabeth Nuttman (nee King).

In the 1881 census before George was born the family lived at 2, Florence Cottages, Croydon. George's father was a 24 year old wood broker. His mother was 30, and he had a sibling, Charles aged 6 months.

At the time of the 1891 census the family had moved to 47, Morland Road, Sutton. George's father, still working with wood was a firewood dealer. Four more siblings had arrived, all brothers, Fred aged 6, Alfred aged 5, Bertie aged 3 and Harry aged 1.

By 1901 George was living with his uncle Harry, a wood merchant, employer, at 50, Sapon Road, Croydon. George may well have been working for his uncle as he was employed as a wood chopper. George's parents had moved to 'Pit view', Langley Park Road, Sutton. Two brothers, Fred and Alfred were working as firewood dealers, probably employed by Dad, Charles who was a firewood dealer, employer. Another male sibling, John aged 9 had arrived, the seventh male to be born to the family, and no females.

George married Florence Burchell in 1907 in Epsom.

George was working as a chemist's porter when the 1911 census was taken and living at 4, Controversy Cottages Epsom with his 34 year old wife Florence. (In the 1901 census Florence had been the servant of Frank W Harsant, a chemist).

It appears that they had two daughters, Mary born in 1913 and May born in 1916.

George attested on 11 December 1915 in Epsom aged 33 into the 7th Battalion Middlesex Regiment. George was a small man at 5 feet 2½ inches tall, weighing 115lbs and had a chest measurement of 34 inches with an expansion of 2 inches. He lived at Controversy Cottages, South Street, Epsom, and worked as a milkman.

George originally served as No 30939 Middlesex Regiment, but at some time was transferred to the 13th Battalion Royal Fusiliers which was in 111 Brigade 37 Division. George died on 2 May 1917 and is buried in Douai Communal Cemetery. Douai is 24 Km north east of Arras, and was in German hands between 1 October 1914 to 17 October 1918. Douai Communal Cemetery was used by the Germans to bury prisoners of war (POW) who died whilst captive. It therefore seems most likely that George died as a POW.

The battle of Arras was fought between 9 April 1917 and 17 May 1917, and although one of the shorter battles, on the basis of casualties per day, for the British, was one of the bloodiest battles of the Great War. The following statistics are taken from 'Cheerful Sacrifice' by Jonathan Nicholls:

Battle Duration Casualties Daily
  (days) (approx) Rate
Somme, 1 July - 18 November 1916 142 415,000 2,943
Arras, 9 April - 17 May 1917 39 159,000 4,076
3rd Ypres 31 July - 12 November 1917 105 244,000 2,323
Final Offensive 8 August - 11 November 1918 96 350,000 3,645

George's battalion made two assaults in the battle of Arras. The first between 9 and 12 April inclusive, during which the battalion lost 95 men killed in action or died of wounds. The second assault between 22 and 29 April inclusive cost the battalion another 102 dead. Reading the war diary it seems most likely that George was wounded and taken prisoner during the second assault. As soon as the men went 'over the top' communication became extremely difficult, and loosing direction became extremely easy. However, on the first day at 4.25am George's battalion went forward behind a creeping barrage and halted at their objective. Other men from a different brigade who had lost direction came running past George's battalion, which caused them to follow and become mixed up with men from many other battalions.

Two officers, 2Lt MV Vaughan and 2Lt JE Whaley on noting what was happening also went forward with a view to bring their own men back to the objective they were supposed to be holding. This they did with some success but not all made it back. Most likely George was one who did not get back.

George was awarded the British War medal and the Victory medal.

The CWGC tells us that he was the son of Charles and Elizabeth Nuttman, and the husband of Florence Nuttman of 17, Controversy Cottages, South Street, Epsom. He is buried in 'Joint grave H. 17' at Douai Communal Cemetery.

The Douai Communal Cemetery
The Douai Communal Cemetery
The Douai Communal Cemetery
Image courtesy of Clive Gilbert © 2013


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