Iron Acton War Memorial, Gloucestershire.

Extended Description
Iron Acton War Memorial.
St James the Less Church

Compiled with additional information by kind permission of the
Commonwealth War Graves Commission

The memorial is inside the church

To the glory of God and in grateful remembrance of the men of this parish who gave their lives for Justice, King and Country in the Great War

This tablet is set up by their friends and neighbours


BALL-ACTON Reginald Thomas Annesley Major, 7th Kings Yorkshire Light Infantry died 22nd May 1916 aged 38. Born 2 October 1877 at Co Wicklow, Ireland to Charles Ball-Acton, C.B. [Colonel K.O.R.L.I.] and Georgina Cecilia Ball-Acton, nee Annesley.
1881 residing with his parents and siblings at Combermere House, Tonbridge, Kent
1891 with his parents and siblings at Priory Road, Malvern, Worcestershire.
Husband of Isabel nee Richmond who he married at the parish church of Iron Acton Co Gloucestershire 17 April 1913. He was aged aged 35, bachelor, gentleman Capt (retired) 51st K.O.Y.L.I Residence at the time of marriage, Dunganstown, Co Wicklow, father Charles Ball-Acton, Colonel late K.O.Y.L.I. Isabel was aged 36, spinster, residing at Iron Acton, father William Richmond, clerk of Holy orders at Iron Acton. His widow some time after his death remarried 1920 at Christchurch, Hampshire to Hugh Norman Diguis La Touche residing of Kilmacurragh, County Wicklow. His widow was granted a Gratuity 16 January 1917.
Wills and Admin, Ancestry.
BALL-ACTON Reginald Thomas Annesley of Kilmacurragh Rathdrum County Wicklow and of Holme Ray Iron Acton Gloucestershire major 7th K.O. Yorkshire Light Infantry died 22 May 1916 in France on active service. Effects went to his widow.

At Rest in White House Cemetery, St. Jean-Les-Ypres, Belgium

Full Extract from UK, De Ruvigny's Roll of Honour, 1914-1919 Ancestry

“BALL-ACTON Reginald Thomas Annesley Major 1st Battn (51st Foot) The King’s Own (Yorkshire Light Infantry), 3rd and only survg s. of the late Col. Charles Ball-Acton, C.B., The King’s Own (Yorkshire Light Infantry), by his wife, Georgina Cecila, 2nd dau of George Annesley [Vicount Valentia Coll]; and gdson of Lieut-Col. William Acton of West Aston, co Wicklow, J.P., D.L., M.P.; and brother to Major C.A. Acton (q.v.); b. Wicklow 2 Oct 1877; educ. Rugby School; Oxford Military College, Cowley and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst; gazetted 2nd Lieut King’s Own (Yorkshire Light Infantry) 22 Dec 1897, promoted Lieut 26 March 1899; Capt 6 August 1914 and Major 3 March 1916; served with 2nd Battn (105th Foot) in the South African War April 1900-2 (Queen’s Medal with three clasps and King’s Medal with two clasps); resigned his commission soon after the termination of the war and took up farming in South Africa and the Argentine; joined the Special Reserve of Officers about 1912; re-joined his regiment on the outbreak of war in Aug 1914; went to France in Dec.; was wounded at the end of Jan 1915 and invalided home; subsequently was with the 7th Battn. at Hull for a year returning to France in March 1916 and killed in action near Ypres 22 May following. Buried in St. Jean Cemetery there. On this occasion Major Ball-Acton had volunteered to go out with some men on patrol duty; on their return two were absent and he immediately o ered (offered) to go and look for them and in doing so was twice wounded, the second time fatally, 2nd Lieut. Bond and Private Garnet bringing him back at great risk, think he was alive. Lieut Bond was awarded the Military Cross for his conduct. He m. at Iron Acton, co Gloucester 17 April, 1913, Isabel (Kilmacurragh, Rathdrum, co Wicklow), 2nd dau. of the late Rev. William Richmond, Vicar of Rockhampton co Gloucester and had a son, Charles b. 25 April 1914”.
I note that Private Garnet was not awarded for his actions with Lieut Bond.

His brother’s Charles Annesley Acton. Captain (Reserve Officers) Temp Major 9th (Service) Battn. The Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Killed in action near Givenchy 25 Sept 1915.

BLANCH Alvan Digby Private 40263, 2nd Worcestershire Regiment. Formerly Trooper 3633 2/1st Royal Gloucestershire Hussars Yeomanry
Born 1891, baptised at St James the Less Church, Iron Acton 1 January 1892 to Alvan Thomas and Hanna Maria Blanch, nee Pritchard. Birth surname registered as Blanche.
1901 residing with his parents and siblings at, Iron Action.
1911 with his parents and siblings on the family farm at Iron Action. Occupation aged 19 working on his parents farm.
Killed in action 5th November 1916. His mother was granted a war gratuity 23 February 1918 revised 23 October 1919.
Commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France

BRAIN William John Private 20138, 4th Grenadier Guards
Born 1896 to James and Mary Ann Brain nee Alsop of Chaingate Road, Iron Acton.
1901-1911 residing with his parents and siblings at Chaingate Lane, Iron Acton. 1911 his occupation, farm labourer.
Died 13th April 1918 aged 22. His mother was granted a war gratuity 3 September 1919.
Commemorated on the Ploegstreet Memorial, Belgium

COLBOURNE William Henry Private 5119, 1/6th Gloucestershire Regiment.
Born 1890 to Joseph and Mary Ann of Northmead Lane, Iron Acton.
1891 aged 8 months residing with his parents and siblings at No13 Grange Villas, Iron Acton.
1901 with his parents and siblings at Ways Hill, Coalpit Heath, Gloucestershire
1911 with his parents and siblings at High Street, Iron Acton. Occupation aged 20 collier at The Ram Hill Colliery, Coalpit Heath near Iron Acton.
Killed in action 15th August 1916 aged 26. His father was granted a war gratuity 28 November 1916 revised 8 October 1919.
Commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme France

JONES William Thomas Private 3117, 8th Gloucestershire Regiment.
Born 1898 at Rangeworthy near Iron Acton to Reuben and Selina Anne Jones, nee Williams of Chaingate Road, Iron Acton.
1901-1911 residing with his parents and sibling at Rangeworthy Road, Rangeworthy.
Died 9th July 1917. His mother was granted a war gratuity 3 October 1917 revised 1 November 1919.
Commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Belgium

PRITCHARD Francis (k/a Frank) Private 266705, [Memorial has 4th] 2/6th Gloucestershire Regiment.
Born 1897 at Iron Acton to Charles and Elizabeth nee Ross of Iron Acton Gloucestershire. Baptised 6 June 1897 at St James the Less, Iron Acton.
1901 residing with his parents and siblings at Goosegreen, Iron Acton.
1911 with his widowed mother and siblings at North Road, Yate, Gloucestershire. Occupation aged 13, farm boy.
Killed in action in Belgium 23rd August 1917 aged 20. His mother was granted a war gratuity 14 January 1918 revised 28 October 1919.
At rest in New Irish Farm Cemetery, Belgium

RUMMINS Silas (Served as George Jones) Private 412768, 13th Canadian Infantry (Quebec Regiment) (Memorial has Canadian Black Watch)
Born (twin) 1891 at Iron Acton to George and Eliza Rummins. Baptised 27 March 1891 at St James the Less, Iron Acton
1891 aged 1 month residing with his parents and siblings at Acton Lane, Iron Acton.
1901 in the Union Workhouse, Yate, Gloucestershire aged 9 with his twin brother Thomas. No other family in the workhouse.
Next of kin his sister Mrs. E. Brown, of 7, Wellington Terrace, Clifton, Bristol, England.
He embarked alone from Liverpool for Quebec, Canada 3 August 1905 on ship Dominion aged 11 years. The majority on the passengers were young and teenage children from 5 to 17, a few were aged 20 all with no parents. Many of these children who were classed as adult from age 12, they had an occupation. There was other passenger, but not connected to the children in any way.
Notes from his service records.
Joined up 19 February 1915 at Lindsay, Ontario, Canada aged 23. Posted to 45th Victoria Regiment, Victoria County, Ontario. later transferee to 13th Battalion (Royal Highlanders of Canada) of the Canadian Expeditionary Force
Embarked on active service for England from Canada 24 June 1915, disembarking in England 3 July 1915. He and his regiment may have been posted the Canadian Expeditionary Force Transit Camps at East and West Sandling, Kent or to Shorncliffe Training Camp, Kent
16 September 1915 posted to France where his joined 13th Canadian Infantry.
22 November 1915 he went sick with influenza. Treated at 3rd Canadian Field Ambulance, discharged fit to join his unit 11 November 1915.
14 June 1916 received a bullet wound (GSW) to his left hand whilst in action. Treated at 3rd Canadian General Hospital, Boulogne, transferred to St John Ambulance at Etaples 20 June 1916. Discharged fit for active duty, rejoined his unit 29 June 1916.
8 October 1916 reported missing in action, later reported killed in action at Rouen aged 25.
At rest in Ovillers Military Cemetery, France.

His twin brother, Thomas, served as Private 8489 in the 2nd Gloucestershire Regiment in World War 1 and survived.

REED Gilbert Private 33338, 7th Norfolk Regiment.
Born 1893 to Robert and Mary Jane Reed, nee Smith of Chaingate Lane, Iron Acton.
1901- 1911 residing with his parents and siblings at Chaingate Lane. 1911 his father was not at home at the time of the census taking.
UK, Army Registers of Soldiers' Effects, 1901-1929 have Gibbert Reed
Died of wounds 13th December 1917 aged 25. His sister Mary Jane Reed was granted a war gratuity 4 April 1918 revised 11 November 1919.
At rest in Rocquigny-Equancourt Road, British cemetery, Manancourt, France

THOMAS Percy George Private 23578, 15th Royal Warwickshire Regiment [Memorial has Royal Engineers] Medal Card shows Warwickshire Regiment.
Born 1891 to William Thomas and Caroline Thomas, nee Goulding of The Green, Iron Acton. Baptised 17 November 1891 at St James the Less, Iron Acton.
1901-1911 residing with his parents and siblings at The Green, Iron Acton. 1911 his occupation was a general labourer.
Killed in action 9th May 1917. His father was granted a war gratuity 22 November 1917 revised 21 December 1919.
At rest in Orchard Dump Cemetery, Arleux-En-Gohelle, France

WOLLEN Alfred George Private 202833, 6th Wiltshire Regiment
Born 1897 to George and Caroline Jane Wollen, nee Higgs of Iron Acton.
Baptised 20 June 1897 at St James the Less, iron Acton.
1901 residing with his parents and siblings at Wotton Road, Iron Acton,
1911 with his parents and siblings in Iron Acton, no location given.
Died in action 30th August 1917 aged 20. His parents were granted a joint war gratuity 13 February 1918, revised 13 November 1919. His parents at the time of his death were residing at High Street, Iron Acton.
Commemorated on his parents headstone in St James the Less churchyard, Iron Acton, also on the Tyne Cot memorial, Belgium


SMITH John Lawrence. Stoker Petty Officer, D/K1200, H.M.S. Drake, Royal Navy,
Born 27 December 1892 at Iron Acton to Enoch and Ellen, nee Crook of Iron Acton.
1901 residing with his widowed mother and siblings at Bagstone Roar, Wickwar, Gloucestershire
1911 with his mother and siblings at Wotton Road, Iron Acton, occupation, farm labourer.
Notes from his Naval Record
Joined the Royal Navy at Devonport 23 August 1911 and posted to HMS Vivid 2 as Stoker Class 2 to the 26 March 1912. Next ship was HMS Bellona from 27 March to 6 November. Promoted to Stoker Class 1 whilst still on Bellona. Other ships he was on Impregnable, Benbow, now Stoker Petty Officer, Europa, Ceres, Colossus (Collingwood), Glorious, and Victory XI (Burslem)
22 November 1922 on an agreement of 2 years sent to Royal Australian Naval Depot, Australia House, London as Stoker Petty Officer 10527 (Australian naval number) until 4 December 1922. Serving on the following Australian Naval Ships HMAS Cerberus from 5 December 1922 to 16 January 1923, Adelaide from 17 January 1923 to 24 January 1924. Brisbane from 25 January 1924 to 28 October 1924. Cerberus from 29 October 1924 to 23 December 1924. Royal Australian Navy, London Depot, Australia House, London 24 December 1924 to 6 April 1925 when he reverted to the Royal Navy for duty on Naval Base HMS Vivid 2, Esprey and Comus which he joined 23 April 1927.
Notes from his 2nd Naval Record
Joined HMS Vivid 2, 17 August 1929, Tamar 28 May 1931, Vivid 2 30 January, Defiance 29 April 1933. On shore 22 August 1933 discharged to pension. He was mobilised to HMS Drake 2, 28 September 1938, demobilised 2 October 1938. He was again mobilised 26 August 1939 onto Naval Base HMS Drake 2 as Stoker Petty Officer. and on the following ships. Gleaner (J83) 4 November 1939. Caroline 1 January 1940, Naval Base HMS Drake 16 February 1940. Caroline (Whaless) 23 April 1940, HMS Calendula 29 April 1940, Eaglet 1 October 1940, Edinburgh Castle 15 December 1940 and Eaglet 27 October 1941.
Died aged 50 of pneumonia on Naval Base HMS Drake 6 February 1943.
UK, British Army and Navy Birth, Marriage and Death Records, 1730-1960 record his death at Royal Naval Hospital, Plymouth, Devon.
At rest in the churchyard, St James the Less, Iron Acton.

MOORE Donald Norman Able Seaman, D/JX, 152298. H.M.S. Glorious. Converted to aircraft carrier, 1924–1930
Born 13 April 1921 at Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire to Joseph Upavon and Mabel Annie Moore, nee Colborne When his parents married 20 December 1919 his father was serving as 1st Aircraftman R.A.F.
1939 he was residing with his parents and siblings at The Green, Chipping Sodbury
Died at sea 8 June 1940 aged 19 the result of the sinking of his ship by German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau,
Commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial

CULLUM Sidney Leading Seaman, D/JX 132196 Sidney Cullum also went down with that ship

FORTUNE Frederick Charles Flight Lieutenant, Pilot, 145670, 45 Squadron, Royal Air Force Reserve
Formerly Flight Sergeant 1290310 RAFVR
Born 2 December 1918 to James George and Beatrice Alice of Patch Elm Lane Rangeworthy, Glos.
1939 Civilian occupation, Metropolitan Police Constable and resided at Violet Road, Bromley. Police Section House
National Archives.
Frederick Charles Fortune, warrant number 126975. Joined on 20 June 1938, and left on 14 May 1945. Last posted to H Division as a PC.

Supplement to London Gazette dated 29 June 1943 RAFVR. General Duties Branch To be Pit. Offs. on prob. (emergency Flt Sgts. 1290310 Frederick Charles FORTUNE (145670) from 5th March 1943

On the 14 May 1945 he was piloting a North American Harvard Mk IIB FE614 along with Flying Officer, Navigator 163685 Gordon RAFVR, ex, USAAF 4200811 from their base at RAF Chiringa, Bengal on a ferry flight to RAF Kumbhirgram, Assam. The plane crashed when the pilot carried out and lost control during a low level inverted flypast over Monierkal Tea Estate, Paianghat. killing both occupants he was aged 26.
Wills and Admin, Ancestry.
Frederick Charles Fortune of Patch Elm Lane, Rangeworth, Gloucestershire died 14 May 1945 on war service. Administration Gloucester 2 May 1946 to his mother.

At rest in Gauhati War cemetery, India 4.F.13

Source for crash credited to

CULLUM Sidney Leading Seaman, D/JX 132196. H.M.S. Glorious. Converted to aircraft carrier, 1924–1930
Born 1 January 1913 at Fulham, London to Ernest and Mary Cullum of 87 Inville Road, Walworth, Southwark. His father was a Police sergeant.
Notes from his service record.
Joined as Boy Class 2 the 28 August 1928 Training Ship HMS Impregnable. Moored in the Hamoaze estuary , Devonport, Plymouth. Occupation Garage Boy.
22 November 1928 he was posted to HMS St Vincent as Boy Class 2. No other information on his record.
1931 his parents were residing at Iron Acton
Died at sea 8 June 1940 aged 27 the result of the sinking of his ship by German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau,
Wills and Admin. Ancestry.
Sidney Cullum of 19 Fore Street, Ashton Keynes, Wiltshire died on or since 9 June 1940 on war service. Administration Gloucester 12 March 1942 to Ernest Cullum retires police sergeant.
Commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon

(Able Seaman, D/JX, 152298 Donald Norman Moore also went down with that ship)

Not on the memorial.

Private Philip WOLLEN No. 235320 1st Royal Gloucestershire Hussars
Born 1894 at Iron Acton to Afred James and Henrietta Stevens Wollen, nee Amos.
Baptised 4 February 1894 at St James the Less, Iron Acton.
1901-1911 residing with his parents and siblings at Coombs End Farm, Old (Father farmer). Sodbury, Gloucestershire. 1911 occupation working for his father
Killed in action 12 November 1917
His father was granted a war gratuity 27 June 1918 revised 29 December 1919.
Commemorated on his mothers’ headstone in St James the Less churchyard, Iron Acton.
At rest at Gaza War Cemetery.
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3633 Tpr. A D Blanch(e) was enlisted into 2/1st RGHY November 1915 and transferred to 2nd Worcesters. The Army Registers of Soldiers Effects states Dth psmd (sic), Death presumed.

He is recorded as having been killed in action in the book "The Royal Gloucestershire Hussars Yeomanry 1898-1922" by Frank Fox and his name is also inscribed on the RGH War Memorial, College Green outside Gloucester Cathedral.

As with many of those who were transferred or commissioned out of the Regiment and subsequently fell, we still remember them.

All relevant data has now been uploaded onto the “Index to Yeoman” which is maintained by the Historical Research sub-Committee of the Royal Gloucestershire Hussars and would like to thank, on their behalf, all those who have contributed to this resource

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