Suffer Little Children

I wrote about the accident that ended the life of Henry Herbert CAMBRIDGE on Looking at Filey. There is currently a security issue at the UK Web Archive so I’ll copy the 2012 post here rather than give the link to the Wayback Machine.

A Fatal Hesitation

Three days after celebrating his 37th birthday Jonathan Bulmer CAMBRIDGE saw a motor lorry knock down his son in Station Avenue. Herbert Henry, thighs broken and skull fractured, died about an hour later, at 11.45 am. He was two years and five months old.

The Scarborough Mercury of Friday 30th October 1914 carried the story: –

Manoeuvres of the troops at Filey on Monday [26th] were attended by a regrettable fatality, a child being run over by a motor lorry. A full report of the inquest will be found in another part of this paper. Men of the Hunts Cyclists Battalion were called out to proceed to Driffield. Many people in Filey thought they were leaving the town for good, but this was not so, they returned in the evening. Thinking, however, that they were leaving permanently a large number of people gathered, and the motor approached the quarters of the men at the same time. The child ran across the road and was returning when there was shouting, the child hesitated and was knocked down with fatal results. The boy was the only male child of Mr. and Mrs. J. B. Cambridge. The incident was exceedingly distressing, but at the inquest no blame was attached to the driver, who seemed to feel the incident very much.

The driver was Lance Corporal Robert WALTON of Coanwood, Northumberland. After crossing the railway line, heading into town, he was slowing as he approached his destination, traveling at five or six miles an hour. He saw Herbert cross the road in front of him but the child’s  sudden doubling back took him by surprise. Even so, he expected Henry to regain the pavement before he passed by. The shouting of a person or persons in the crowd had, however, confused Henry and caused him to hesitate in the middle of the road. The lorry’s mudguard caught him a glancing blow to the head and he fell under the wheels.

 

2012_StationAveFiley
Station Avenue,  2012

 

It appears from witness statements at the inquest that Henry was with his mother at one side of Station Avenue but, seeing his father on the other side, dashed over to be with him. Approaching the opposite pavement, though, he could no longer spot his father’s face in the crowd and so turned back. Perhaps one or two people saw the lorry approaching, sensed the child was in danger and shouted a warning that triggered his fatal hesitation. Herbert Henry CAMBRIDGE may have been killed by kindness.

Blameless Lance Corporal WALTON may not have survived the war. A soldier of the same name and rank serving in the Northumberland Fusiliers was killed on 1st July 1916 and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial. Herbert rests in St Oswald’s churchyard.  (Added note:  This Robert was almost certainly killed at La Boisselle on the first day of the Battle of the Somme.)

Herbert rests in St Oswald’s churchyard.

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In loving memory of HERBERT HENRY, the beloved son of JOHN & ELIZABETH CAMBRIDGE, died Oct 26th 1914 aged two years & 5 months.

Suffer little children to come unto me.

Also ALICE MAY, aged 3 weeks.

(The burial register gives Alice’s age as 14 days.)

Young Herbert has a fairly substantial pedigree on Filey Genealogy & Connections, going back as far as John CAMMISH born 1660. He has fewer forebears on the FamilySearch Tree but I’ve added some today.

 

 

Polygon Wood

PolygonWood

Before the Great War began the wood may have had this exact shape – but probably a different mix of tree species. It was fought over in October 1914 by, amongst other regiments, the 2nd Worcesters. When they returned in September 1917 –

…the aspect of the scene at dawn was very different from what it had been three years before. The open fields had been beaten into a desolate expanse of boggy shell-holes. Such trees as still stood had been stripped and broken. On the skyline to the left, a mere stubble of bare tree trunks marked the site of Polygon Wood.

The Battle for the Wood “raged” throughout the day of the 26th and in the hours of dark the area was subject to an intense bombardment.

…as dawn broke at 5am the artillery of both sides suddenly ceased their fire. For some minutes all remained under cover, then, as the guns did not recommence, men
ventured cautiously from their defenses and gazed around in wonder. The intense bombardment of two days and nights had beaten the whole area into a different
appearance. Such landmarks as had existed beforehand had disappeared. The surface of the ground from Stirling Castle to Gheluvelt had been churned up afresh, the whole
landscape was even more desolate and repulsive than before.

Source

The battle for Polygon Wood was effectively over. “Intermittent sniping alone
continued throughout the day of Thursday the 27th of September.”

Perhaps it was a sniper’s bullet that ended the life of Private Harold CRIMLISK of Filey, fighting with the 6th Battalion Yorkshire Regiment.

Harold is buried at Cement House Cemetery, about 12 kilometers distant from where he fell. There is a small cemetery at Polygon Wood and this source offers a gallery of 14 photographs showing the difference a hundred years make.

Harold and some of his forebears may be found in Filey Genealogy & Connections and on the FamilySearch Tree.  He also has a page on the Looking at Filey Wiki.

Fox Hunt

Dr. George Sheeran (Bradford University) appealed to the readers of the Dorset Echo last November for information about the FOX-HAWES sisters who had been the main beneficiaries of Elinor Clarke’s will in 1905. I’m sure he hoped that a photograph of Elinor might be flushed from cover. I doubt anyone in Filey today knows what the wealthiest resident at the turn of the last but one century looked like.

I’d hardly begun my online search when I picked up the scent – and received a major surprise. Not that her sister Eliza had borne six children but that she had married William Fox HAWES at St Oswald’s Filey – and the Reverend William ALDERSON had officiated.

(All of William and Eliza’s children were given Fox as a middle name but most of the official records I found today gave their last name as HAWES – so I have decided not to add the hyphen.)

Circumstantial evidence suggests that William was introduced to Eliza by her brother Robert Dennison CLARKE. Robert was called to the Bar by the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple in 1865. William had been called by Lincoln’s Inn three years earlier. They both took their first degrees at Cambridge and William stayed on to take an M.A., which he received in October 1866. One of his ways of celebrating was to go up to Filey a short time later and, on the 1st of November, marry Eliza.

Eliza gave birth to four sons – William, Robert, Edward and John. Caroline was first born and Elinor fourth to arrive. Eliza died in 1878 aged 39  when John was just a year old. William Senior married Margaret Annie SIMPSON in 1884. She was in her mid- twenties but there are no signs in the Census or GRO of her having any children. Twenty years William’s junior she outlived him by 26; she died aged 78 in 1936 and William in 1910 at 72.

What of the fortunate nieces? Caroline, who does have a the FOX-HAWES name in her marriage registration, was wife to Raoul Hyppolite C. ROBICHON for only nine years. He died aged 43 in Croydon in 1908. I looked for children but didn’t find any. (The information that I was given some years ago that the couple had married in 1865 isn’t correct.) Elinor died a FOX-HAWES aged 82 in 1956 in Bournemouth (Poole Registration District).

The Terence Edward mentioned in the Dorset Echo is a plain HAWES in his birth registration, mother’s maiden surname DRISCOLL.

I wonder if Northcliffe family photographs of Elinor, Eliza and Robert Dennison Junior. The fourth Clarke child, Mary Anne, did not survive infancy. There is a Chorlton death registration for a 3-year-old in March 1844 which fits reasonably well with a June Quarter birth in 1841 in the same place. The wee mite didn’t make it to Strawberry Cottage in 1851.

 

ClarkeWindow
The Elinor Clarke memorial window in St Oswald’s, Filey; photo courtesy Ray Kilsby

Update 19 August

Elinor’s window, all of it, snapped this morning.

StOs_CLARKEwindow1_1m