Halifax or Lancaster?

Yesterday was the anniversary of the death of Sgt W. E. L. HARRISON.

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William was in the RAFVR when he was killed. One online source has a photograph of him (giving his second name as Edward) and states in part:-

…the unit was equipped with Halifax bombers, one of the mainstay bombers within the R.A.F. at the time.

Unfortunately, during one particular training flight Billy’s Halifax was seen to lose control and the bomber crashed.  Harrison died of the wounds he received in the crash and his body was interred in St. Oswald’s cemetery just over a week later.

Another source offers “Edmund” rather than Edward but, more importantly, says he was the bomb aimer aboard a Lancaster.

Both sources agree on his service number – and his prowess on the football field. He played semi-professionally for Bradford Park Avenue FC. I thought that the CWGC website might offer a definitive casting vote but the information there is sketchy. It reckons Edmund was his middle name, but the St Oswald’s burial register gives Edward. (His birth registration has “William E. L.”).

William isn’t on the FamilySearch Tree but his great-grandmother, Eleanor AUTON, offers a starting point to build upon.

Today’s Image

The official record of the deaths of Port Hunter’s crew gives Geoffrey Bradley’s last address as 16 West Avenue, Filey. (Wednesday’s post.) If the numbering hasn’t changed since the Second World War, the space where this dwelling should be is occupied by Thornton House. With its three gables and sunny appearance, it makes me smile whenever I walk past. It is very clearly a one-off in architectural terms, and may well be the fanciful creation of a capable small town builder.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASamuel Bradley was such a man. He appears in a number of newspaper court reports seeking restitution for non-payment, mostly for minor debts relating to materials used, but one customer defaulted on a house that Samuel built in Lincolnshire.

The birth of his first son with Harriet Smith was registered in that county and Geoffrey’s, three years later, in Scarborough. Perhaps Thornton House (at left in the photo) was a fresh-start project for his second family.

FV ‘Emulator’

The steam drifter, wood built at Lowestoft in 1904, was bought by Matthew ‘Matty Airy’ CRIMLISK in 1914 when he saw the success ‘Billy Butter’ WATKINSON was having with a similar vessel, Lord Kitchener. Matthew shared ownership with William ‘Billy Trummy’ JENKINSON and the latter’s nephew, Richard Cammish JENKINSON. The war intervened and Emulator was requisitioned by the Admiralty and operated as a minesweeper. It is a terrible irony that she served without mishap until released by the government and then, on the first peace-time fishing trip from her home port, was blown up by a mine, about 25 miles east of Flamborough Head.

‘Matty Airy’ and his sons, Wilfred and Tom Robert CRIMLISK were killed. ‘Billy Trummy’ and his son, Thomas Castle ‘Toye’ JENKINSON also died, with Richard Cammish JENKINSON and Richard Baxter ‘Dick Fipney’ COWLING. Seven in all. A plaque in St Oswald’s Church names nine fishermen who died in 1919 but two were drowned from the coble Annie (yesterday’s post).

Seven Filey Men Lost

Drifter Sunk by Mine

There was great distress at Filey on Wednesday when it became known that the steam drifter Emulator, had been sunk through striking a mine 30 miles out of Scarborough, and that her crew of seven, all Filey men, had been lost. The Emulator left Scarborough on Tuesday afternoon for the fishing grounds, and the steam drifters Tryphena and Fear Not went out at the same time. The Tryphena returned on Wednesday morning and the Fear Not in the afternoon, and reported that shortly before ten o’clock on Tuesday night they heard a terrific explosion in the direction where they last saw the Emulator fishing. They missed the Emulator’s lights, and later, whilst cruising round, discovered traces of oil on the water, but there was no sign of any crew. A search was made at daylight by the Fear Not, but nothing could be seen, and after getting in their own lines the two drifters returned to port. The Emulator was taken over by the Government in 1916, and several members of the crew have been with her all the time. Latterly she has been fishing out of Grimsby, and only returned to Scarborough last Friday. She was owned by three of the men who, it is feared, have gone down with her, namely, Matthew Crimlisk, skipper aged about 40, married, of Filey (who had two sons with him); William Jenkinson, of Filey, mate (who had one son with him); and Richard Jenkinson. The other missing man is Richard Cowling, who married the daughter of a well-known Scarborough fisherman, and who leaves a widow and six or seven children.

Hull Daily Mail, 17 April 1919

There haven’t been enough hours today for me to find all the lost men and their families on FamilySearch Tree. Mainly because I have a studio portrait and headstone photograph, I’ll briefly introduce ‘Dick Fipney’ now.

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photographer Walter Fisher, no date, courtesy Suzanne Pollard

Richard Baxter, son of William ‘Fipney’ COWLING and Margaret BAXTER, was born in 1871. Through common ancestors Robert JENKINSON and Margaret TRUCKLES, he was a third cousin to the other six aboard Emulator.

He married Alice BAYES in Scarborough in 1898  and the couple had seven children. Filey Genealogy & Connections shows that all but one married. The children of Richard and Alice haven’t been entered on the FamilySearch Tree yet.

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FV ‘Joan Margaret’

It is thought that HMT D. V. Fitzgerald triggered an enemy mine in the River Humber on this day, 1941. The explosion sank the motor fishing boat Joan Margaret, and the herring drifter Gloaming, with the loss of eight lives.

There are two posts about this event on the archived Looking at Filey:-

‘Joan Margaret’

‘Joan Margaret’ Revisited

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‘Joan Margaret’ about 1934, Grimsby New Fish Dock, courtesy Martin Douglas

Wreck Site gives the location of the event, details about the vessels and their crews. Joan Margaret, Gloaming.

Below is a list of those killed with links to their Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) web pages and, for the Filey men, links to their pedigrees on Filey Genealogy and Connections (FG&C). At the time of writing, only George WILLIS can be found on FamilySearch Tree. (I haven’t looked for the Gloaming men on FST.)

 

Richard HAXBY, CWGC, FG&C

Thomas Edmond PEARSON, CWGC, FG&C

George Robert PEARSON, CWGC, FG&C

John William POWLEY, CWGC, FG&C

George WILLIS, CWGC, FG&C, FST

Charles A. LITTLE, CWGC

William S. REDGRAVE, CWGC

Robert SWANN, CWGC