First World War Centenary – Ryde’s Toll of War 1917
Another year when families in Ryde suffered great loss of beloved sons, brothers, husbands, and fathers. Many from the same street, remembered by friends and neighbours and many known from schooldays and as workers in the town. All adding to the continuing death toll of war and those left, wondering, ” When will it end and what is it all for?”
STRICKLAND Alfred Thomas died March 1917 (aged 35) with the Canadian Infantry. Son of the late Frank Strickland and Mary Ellen, 41 St. John’s Rd. The census of 1891 and 1901 show the family at 15 St. John’s Rd – Father is the Board Schools caretaker. Brother Robert had died young in1912. Another brother Richard was a Naval death in 1913.
ORCHARD George died April 1917 with HMS Broke, off Dover (aged 33) husband of Florence, Hope Cottage, 8 Hope Rd. Son of William and Fanny Orchard.
RANDS Percy died April 1917 (aged 29) son of Frederick and Bessie Rands, Great Upton Farm (both pre-deceased him.) Brother Ralph killed in action April 1918.
MACKENZIE Keith Ingleby died April 1917 (aged 18) son of Kenneth and Florence MacKenzie, Landsdowne House, Ryde. Keith was shot down while taking photographs.
COOK Cornwall died April 1917 (aged 34) son of Cornwall and Jane Cook and husband of Kate, 1 Lower Bettesworth Rd. Cornwall Cook wasn’t reported missing until June 1917.
HILTON Frederick Charles died April 1917 (aged 24) with the Canadian Infantry, had emigrated a few years before the outbreak of the war. He has been previously wounded at the Somme. Youngest son of John and the late Kate Hilton, 9 Surrey St. (Their eldest son Walter died 1923 of war wounds.)
MOREY John died April 1917 in Palestine (aged 22) had survived Gallipoli. Son of George and Janet Morey, 7 Bettesworth Rd. The 1911 census recorded John as a dairyman’s labourer.
NASH James died June 1917 at Ypres (aged 27) with the Australian Infantry. Son of John and Elizabeth Nash, 4 High Pk Sq. Oakfield. James had emigrated in 1913 and joined up July 1915. (His brother later had the Ryde High St. fish and chip shop.)
COYNE Percy died July 1917 in Palestine (aged 20) youngest son of Joseph and Mary Coyne, 8 Preston Place.
HENDY Percy died July 1917 (aged 31) son of Isaac and Hannah Percy and husband of Mary, 51 Surrey St. Percy was previously a porter at Yelfs.
WHITTINGTON Harold James died August 1917 (aged 19) son of Charles and Mary Whittington, 43 Green St. Previously of 74 Upton Rd, Ashey. The 1901 and 1911 census recorded his occupation as brickmaker at Brickyard Ashey.
ALEXANDER George Luard died August 1917 (aged 34) with the Post Office Rifles, only son of Capt. Ronald, J.P., of Strathallan, Queens Rd. Husband of Marjorie.
WILLIAMS Sydney Harry died September 1917 (aged 30) son of Harry and Elizabeth Williams, 8 Church Lane. Husband of Bessie, “Sardins”, Bettesworth Rd. Sydney’s brother George Henry had also been killed in 1914. There were 5 Williams brothers who fought in the Great War.
WARD Edgar died September 1917 at Ypres (aged 35) son of Edmund and Eleanor Ward and husband of Jessie. The 1901 census recorded Edgar at 10 Monkton St, cycle makers, with his father and older brother.
BALL Albert Leonard died October 1917 in Egypt, of pneumonia, (aged 29) eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Ball, 30 Surrey St. Husband of E. L. Ball, Myrtle Cottage, Bettesworth Rd. her family home. (Albert’s wife’s brother Arthur King served at Gallipoli and Palestine but died of wounds in 1918.)
BESSANT Harry died October 1917 (aged 30) son of Harry and Rose Bessant, 45 Weeks Rd. Harry’s brother Fred had been killed at Gallipoli in 1915.
LANGFORD Alfred died October 1917 (aged 39) with the Canadian Infantry. Son of widow Mrs. Maria Langford, 17 Salters Rd. The census of 1901 records Alfred’s mother as a laundress. (She had lost her husband in an accident in 1878 and another son was a naval death that same year.)
MCCAUGHIN Daniel John died October 1917 (aged 20) with London Post Office Rifles. Son of Mrs. Alice Rose McCaughin, 7 Colenutts Rd.
STROUD Willis Robert died October 1917 at Ypres (aged 34) with the New Zealand Rifles. Willis was a window cleaner prior to the war. Son of Frederick William and Mary Jane Stroud, 15 Victoria Cres. High Park Rd.
ELEY William Campling died November 1917 (aged 39) Prisoner of War in Germany. Son of James and the late Fanny Eley (Fanny died in October 1917 – James died June 1918 ) Census 1881 and 1891 record the family business at 49 Union St. Harness Makers. The family home was 22 Well St. William had emigrated to the United States but came back in 1916 to serve.
RAYNER Arthur Edward died November 1917 at Gaza (aged 24) son of Thomas and Eliza Rayner, “Hughenden,” 47 St. John’s Rd. The census of 1911 recorded Arthur as a florist shop assistant. Arthur’s brother Alfred had been killed at Gallipoli in 1915.
BUGDEN William George died November 1917 at Gaza (aged 33) son of William Bugden, “Victori”, Argyll St. Husband of Alice Emily, 69 Arthur St.
BAXTER Arthur Fred died November 1917 in Palestine (aged 32) only son of the late Frederick and Elizabeth Caroline Baxter, “Kingsthorpe”, Yelfs Rd. Wife Caroline, 172 High St.
DYER Harold John died Dec 1917 (aged 25) Army Service Corps, 11th Field Bakery. Son of Frederick and Caroline Dyer, 14 Bank Gdns.
Sources: Isle of Wight Memorials & Monuments website, CWGC records & RSHG Archive
Original postcard – Kate MacDonell