Tring in War Time, 1914-1919


Extracts from the Bucks Herald of 6th March, 1915

Edited from British Newspaper Archive

Previous week ~~~~ Tring News Index ~~~~ Next Week

The big military news of the week  was the inquest on Lance-Corporal John White and Private William Hilton Thomas, members the 21st Divisional Cyclists Corps. They had been motor cycling to Aylesbury when they crashed, involving a motor ambulance returning to Tring with no side lights on, and both died of injuries. At the time of the accident the men were billeted  in Aston Clinton, where the accident happened, and the inquest was held in Aylesbury but because the men were part of the 21st Division (H.Q. Tring), the ambulance driver was in the Army Service Corp billeted in Tring, and the men had been in the 12 Northumberland Fusiliers who were billeted in and around Tring I have included extensive quotations from the report of the inquest. There are some interesting insights, such as the fact that Lance-Corporal White has hired the motor bike to help him carry out military duties as part of his training. Only a few weeks before another soldier had been killed while riding on the outside of a taxi cab - and now Private Thomas had died riding pillion on a motor cycle unsuitable for two.

Other war news was limited. Gas supplies were at risk because of transport problems for the coal. Lord Rothschild acknowledged the donation made by the Tring Agricultural Association to the British Red Cross (see earlier report), while Emma Rothschild called for donations to the Soldiers and Sailors" Families Association. The Church of England Men's Society discussed "Heroism" - carried over from an earlier meeting and several of the Situations Vacant advertisements may reflect labour shortages.

Local news is dominated by the Council by-election, although the court case involving two boy who stole admission tickets from the Gem Picture House may have raised some eyebrows about the "modern generation." Others will have been pleased the the licence of the Rose and Crown was being renewed after the earlier scare. The sudden death of Thomas Messenger, a carpenter on the Tring Park Estate was noted along with the illness of J. W. Grange of Grove Farm. The Rev. Charles Pearce celebrated 41 years at the United Free Church and Miss Sybil Boyson, who parents lived at Grove Lodge, Tring, got married at St. Marys Church, Vizianagram, Andhra Pradesh.



High Street Church. - The Rev. G. Crossland, Wesleyan officiating minister to the troops, will conduct the service on Sunday evening.

Damage by Storm. - During the storm on Monday a huge tree was blown down in Grove Park. The tree fell across a shed close by, and practically demolished it.

The Health of Mr. J. W. Grange. - We are pleased to learn that Mr. J. W. Grange is going on as well as can be expected. His friends hope that his condition is not so serious as was at first anticipated.

The Parish Church.  - The Rev. Kenneth Kirk, C.F., who is doing such a splendid work under very difficult circumstances amongst the troops stationed in Tring, will be the preacher at the Parish Church on Sunday morning.

Sudden Death. - Mr. Thomas Messenger, of 27. New Mill-terrace, died quite suddenly on the evening of Thursday, Feb. 25. Deceased had been employed for many years as a carpenter on the Tring Park Estate, and was 65 years of age. As Dr. O'Keeffe was able to certify the cause of ¦death, inquest was held.

The Price of Gas. - The Gas Company have issued an appeal to private consumers to use as little gas as possible, as it is almost impossible to get gas coal delivered in Tring while the railways are monopolised for military traffic. The Company also give notice that the price of gas will be increased 5d. per 1,000 from 1st of January.

Marriage. - "The many friends of Miss Sybil Boyson in Tring will be interested in reading the following announcement, and offer their best wishes to Mr. and Mrs. Lecky: -

Boyson - Lecky. On the 16th January, at St. Marys Church, Vizianagram, 6th daughter of Ambrose P. Boyson, to Reynolds Lemont, 4th son of the late Major James Lecky, R.M.L.I., and Mrs. Lecky, Billingshurst, Sussex." Tring Church Magazine.

Honours in the Shire Horse World. - A correspondent writes:- By a very narrow margin Tring has just missed an occurrence that would have been unique is the annals of the Shire Horse Show, via., to have taken the two highest honours bestowed at this the most influential meeting of the year. Lord Rothschild took the championship for the best horse, and Mr. J. G. Williams stands reserved for the championship for the best mare out of entry of some 700 animals from all over the country.

The Public House Trust. - The licensing justices have consented tot he renewal of the licences of the Kings Arms, Berkhamsted; the Bridgewater Arms, Little Gaddesden; the Rose and Crown, Tring; and the Two Brewers, Chipperfield, all the property of the Home Counties Public House Trust, on condition that within three months they were transferred to the joint names of Mr. A. F. Part (the managing director the Trust) and the resident managers, or the managers alone, if Mr. Part preferred.

Tring Agricultural Society. - At the annual general meeting of the Society in January, it was decided to give one hundred guineas to the funds of the British Red Cross Society. The amount was duly forwarded, and the following acknowledgment has been received from Lord Rothschild:-

"Tring Park, Tring. February 27th, 1915.

Dear Mr. Brown,

I beg to thank you very heartily for the cheque for one hundred guineas which you sent to me in the name of the Tring Agricultural Society, for the benefit of the British Red Cross Society. I need hardly tell you that this gift is most acceptable, and that all the members of the Society, as well as myself, greatly appreciate your kind thought.

I remain, yours very truly,

(signed) Rothschild.

Frank J. Brown, Esqre..

Secretary. Tring Agricultural Society.

41. High Street. Tring.

P.S. Will you also convey special thanks to all those who subscribed towards the £7:1, cheque for which you sent me.

The Council Election. - A great deal of interest is being displayed in the contest to fill the vacant seat on the Council. Three of the candidates have issued addresses.

Mr. John Bagnall, who was proposed by Mr. Wm. Allen, and seconded by Mr. William Smith, is the official Co-operative candidate, and the committee of the Society, in asking members to support him, "claim that the time has arrived when they should be represented on all public bodies responsible for the government of the town, that they may be counted amongst the largest ratepayers".

Mr. John Smith, proposed by Mr. Herbert Baker, and seconded by Mr. Ben Randall has not issued one, but understood to be making a personal canvass.

Mr. William Smith, who somewhat reluctantly came forward at the wish of many ratepayers, was proposed by Mr. Walter Mead, and seconded by Mr. Jabez Pratt. As he was for nine years a member of the old Local Board, he claims that he is not unacquainted with the work which the Council is called upon to perform.

Mr. Edward Wright. proposed by Mr. Geo. Parrott, seconded by Mr. R. G. Wright, asks for support on the ground that he able to understand the public wants of ratepayers, small property owners, and townspeople generally.

The poll was on on Friday (March 5th), at the Market House.

The Parish Church. - Services and music for 3rd Sunday in Lent:- Holy Eucharist at 7 and 8. Matins at 11; Venite and Psalms chants set (Cathedral Psalter); Benedicite, Turner; Benedictus, Dr. Boyce; hymns, 527, 266, 191; preacher, the Rev. Kenneth Kirk, C.F. Evensong, 6.30; Psalms, as set; Magnificat, ancient melody; Nunc Dimittis, S.S. Wesley: voluntary, "Spanish Chant" (variations). James Smart.

A. H. Baker, F.R.C.O., organist and choirmaster. Wednesday. March 10, evensong at 7; preacher, the Rev. Ernest Lang, D.D., vicar of Mentmore.

Pastors Anniversary. - The Rev. Charles Pearce celebrated on Wednesday the 41st anniversary of his pastorate of the United Free Church. The circumstances were exceptional. The Lecture Hall is in the occupation of the Day School and military authorities, and so it was impossible to hold the usual tea this year. This was a matter for regret, as the tea provides opportunities for social intercourse, especially to friends from a distance, which are greatly appreciated. But in spite of drawbacks the anniversary was a singularly happy one. Dr. Ewing, of London, an ex-president of the Baptist Conference, and one of the foremost men in the denomination, preached twice, and friends from the neighbouring Churches came to rejoice with the worshippers at High-street Church on the happy occasion, and to testify by their presence their appreciation of the consistent life and long continued labours of the pastor. At the evening service there was a large and representative congregation and Dr. Ewing delivered an eloquent and uplifting address on "Christ in you."

C.E.M.S - The monthly Federation night was held on Tuesday, and the evening was devoted to a discussion of various points raised in Mr Bell address on "Heroism," delivered at the previous meeting. So many questions were raised by Mr. Bell that it was felt impossible to deal with them in the very limited time available at the February meeting, so it was decided to postpone the discussion until the following month. The experiment was a decided success. The Secretary arranged that various topics touched upon in the address should be dealt with by different speakers, and after brief recapitulation of his principal propositions Mr. Bell, the Rev. H. E. U. Bull and Mr. A, H. Brown spoke on local government, the Rev. Guy Beech gave a general review of the arguments adduced in the opening address, Mr H Hobson spoke on heroism real and sham, and Mr W. H. Seymour defended the establishment of the Dioceasan Unions of. the C.E.M.S. Mr. Bell briefly replied. Others who took part in the discussion were Mr. A W Barton, Mr F. B. Fells and Mr H N Hedges. The Vicar, who presided, voiced the thanks of the meeting to Mr. Bell and the other speakers.



School Boys in Trouble. - At the Berkhamsted Petty Sessions on Wednesday - Mr. H. R. G. Craufurd. chairman

Two lads, W. Burrows, 12 of King-street, Tring, and Charles Poulton. 13, of Western-road, were charged with stealing 46 threepenny admission tickets from the Gem Picture Hall, Tring. on Feb. 3. Evidence was given by P. J. Darville, the proprietor of the Hall, two boys, Arthur Simmonds and George Seabrook, and by P.C. Prior, who had charge of the case. The tickets were kept the pay office, which is at the end of the passage leading up to the Hall. The office was locked, but the outer door of the passage is usually left open. On their way back to school on the afternoon in question the boys entered the premises, broke the window of the office with a stone, and by standing on the stairs at the side of the office were able to reach the rickets. They both admitted the offence, and Mr. Darville did not press the charge. They were bound over for twelve months, and had to pay the reduced coats. 5s. each.



Discovery of Human Remains. - During some trench digging operations by the military in the village the remains of a human skeleton were discovered about two feet below the surface. A the bones has evidently been buried for many years, it was not considered necessary to hold an inquest.



Dear Sir,

I enclose the report of the annual meeting of the Buckinghamshire Branch of the Soldiers and Sailors" Families Association, which I hope you will insert in your paper. At the same time have pleasure in asking you to convey through the medium of your paper heartfelt thanks to all those who have so generously contributed to the funds by sending donations, and also in organising entertainments for the benefit of the Soldiers and Sailors' Families Association.

I am, yours truly,


President. Tring Park, Tring, 1st March, 1915.



THE following varieties only once grown from Scotland: Arran Chief, Arran’s Hope, Cora {improved Up-to-Dete). Dalhousie, Fector, Imperial, Langwortby, King Edward VII., Table Talk, Dalmeny Regent, Up-to-Date, 8/- per bushel ; Eclipse, Duke of York, Midlothian Early, 5/- per bushel, delivered. — BEDFORD, New Ground Farm, Tring.



COOK-GENERALS and HOUSE-PARLOURMAIDS for Berkhamstead, Harrow, Chesham, and Hemel Hempstead; also Good GENERALS; high wages; stamp. Mrs. ROSS, Select Registry, Berkhamstead.

WANTED, HOUSEKEEPER, all duties, easy place, family two; suit middle-aged person. Write, Mr. COCKER, Ecklinville, Miswell Lane, Tring.

WANTED, YOUNG LADY, to help in Fruit and Florist Shop, willing to be useful, live in. A. WESTWOOD, 18, High Street, Tring.

WANTED, a MAN with some knowledge of SHEEP in HURDLES, and make himself useful on Farm generally.—Apply, PERCY E. MEAD, Gubblecote Farm, Tring.

 WANTED, for Tring district, a real good PLOUGHMAN; wages £1 per week and cottage.—Apply, LEONARD NEWMAN, Hampden Villa, Tring.



MANGOLDS for SALE, 14/- Ton at Pit. Apply, PERCY E. MEAD, Gubblecote Farm, Tring.



WANTED, to RENT, from 5 to 20 Acres of GRASS LAND in or near Tring.—Apply, "D," Bucks Herald Office, Aylesbury.

10,000 HENS WANTED: prices 1/6 to 3/6. LEVY, Buckland, Tring. Wednesdays, Rose and Crown, Aylesbury. Also feathers


MILK Wanted to Boxmoor Station. THREE CHURNS DAILY. Good references from present Farmers.—STREETE, 30, London Road, Apsley, Herts.

MILK WANTED, to Charing Cross Station; must be well cooled.—Apply, FAULKS & SONS, 129, Jermyn Street, S.W.

MILK! MILK!! Now making Contracts for 12 months. Please state lowest price; cash weekly. HANSON, New Yard, Great Queen Street, London, W.C.

MILK! MILK!! MILK!!! The Great Western and Metropolitan Dairies, Ltd., are now open to purchase for six or twelve months, large or small DAIRIES of well-cooled MlLK, delivered London by any Railway Company; good supply churns; no stoppages; payments fortnightly; Bankers' References: London & South Western Bank, Edgware Road, W.  Write or Call,  W Price, Managing Director 9, Harrow Road, Paddington (close to Edgware Station).

... (and even more similar milk adverts)




In the last issue of the Bucks Herald we announced the deaths of Lance-Corporal John White and Private William Hilton Thomas, members the 21st Divisional Cyclists Corps, billeted at Aston Clinton, which occurred on Thursday night at the Royal Bucks Hospital, the result of an accident on the road between Aylesbury and Aston Clinton. At that time the nature ox the accident was shrouded in mystery, but evidence was adduced at the inquest held at the hospital on Saturday evening which threw a good deal of light the circumstances. Both the deceased men hail from Dewsbury, and came to the district with the 12th Northumberland Fusiliers. They were first billeted at Aylesbury, and after the removal from Halton to billets, they went with their battalion to Tring. When the Cycle Corps was formed a month ago, White and Thomas were amongst the men selected for that important branch of the Service, and from the evidence of Major Vaughan, their commanding officer, were young men full of promise for the special duties for which they had been chosen. Like others in the Corps they were keen in taking every means of learning methods of mobility, and it was whilst thus engaged that the sad accident occurred, the details of which are recorded in evidence.

The Acting-Coroner (Mr. Stanley E. Wilkins) conducted the inquiry, and the jury comprised Messrs. F. Richings (foreman), J. A. Stammers, F. Hartridge, G. Sainsbury, J. Shore, P. Brisker, F. H. Samuels, J. W. Lovegrove, R. E. Eaton, A. Ginger, P. V. Jenns, H. J. Plater, S. G. York, F. Standring, and J. Lynch.

Supt. Wooton was present on behalf of the police, with P.S. Tucker as Coroner's officer: Mr. J. H. Coales (Messrs. J. and T. Parrott, solicitors. Aylesbury), represented Private Thomas Richard Skinner, motor driver of the Mechanical Transport. A.S.C., attached to 12th Northumberland Fusiliers; Major Vaughan and several subalterns were also present.


Major Arthur Owen Vaughan, commanding 21st Divisional Cyclist Corps, at present stationed at Aston Clinton, said the bodies the jury had viewed were those Lance-Corporal John White and Private William Hilton Thomas, who were members of the Cyclist Corps under his command. From the attestation papers he saw White enlisted on Sept. 10, 1914, his address being South View, Wakefield-road, Dewsbury, Yorks. Deceased was 19 years and 186 days old on enlisting. Thomas enlisted on Sept. 11, 1914. at Dewsbury, his home address being "Anroyd", Dewsbury. His age at that date was 21 years 24 davs. Shortly after four o'clock Thursday, Feb. 24. he gave the deceased White a letter to Colonel Mullins, Tring. Witness told him to go his own time that evening, and bring him an answer. Anytime between then and nine o clock morning would be considered his own time. He told deceased he could take a bicycle if he wished to do so. This was not order, but friendly advice. He gave no instructions whatever to Private Thomas. Witness could not say from his own knowledge as to whether Lance-Corporal White called with an answer. He did not give either of the deceased men instructions to hire a motor bicycle, or to proceed Aylesbury. He might add, however, that the men under his command were so keen in taking advantage of opportunities of learning means of mobility' that they devoted their leisure time and spent their own pay for it, in order to qualify themselves,. Continuing, witness said after delivering the message at Tring deceased was at liberty to cycle in the direction Aylesbury if he wished to do so. Both the deceased men bore the highest character for sobriety

... Mr Coles - You have 270 men in the Cyclist Corps. Is it possible for you to know their individual capabilities?

Witness They use every means of making themselves efficient for their duties, and I have every man before and enquire a« to their individual capabilities. One of the deceased men I know was a first-class motor cyclist.

Major Vaughan asked if, as commanding officer, might allowed to put questions to the witnesses through the Coroner, as would his duty make report headquarters.

The Coroner - Oh, yes; I have no objection your doing so.


Mr. George Brill, of Aston Clinton, stated that on Thursday, Feb. 25, at a quarter-pas eight, he was cycling from Aylesbury in the direction Aston Clinton. When near Mr. Fowler's farm a vehicle passed him, and he saw a light approaching him at the same time. The light it was approaching was on his right-hand side, and at the time appeared to be nearly a mile away. As the vehicle passed he came the conclusion it was motor ambulance. Lights were burning the front of the ambulance. thought it was travelling at a quicker pace than usual. After the ambulance had passed and he had cycled another 100 yards, he heard crash and a grating noise as of brakes being applied. The light that was approaching him went out suddenly. The ambulance when it passed him was well on the left-hand side of the road. After the crash he cycled for about 300 yards, and then saw a motor cycle on the metal portion of the road, on his right-hand side, about 2ft. from the edge of the grass. Witness saw the body of a soldier dressed in khaki uniform on the edge of the grass, and now knew him to be deceased John White. He was lying on his back on the metal portion of the road, with his head pointing towards Aston Clinton. Witness raised his head, and asked him if was hurt very much. Deceased made no reply, and appeared to be quite unconscious. Witness then discovered Private Thomas lying on the grass, three or four yards from the metal portion the road. was lying on his right side, with his head pointing in the direction of Aston Clinton. Witness lifted his head, but deceased did not speak. went for assistance, and Mr. Robert Howe came with conveyance, and (witness) assisted conveying both men to the hospital. Witness described the night somewhat hazy, and the roads were hard, as it was freezing, He did not notice any tendency to skid. The ambulance was going in the direction of Aston Clinton.

By a juror - When he heard the grating noise he did not hear the ambulance stop.


Miss Annie Thorne, Weston-road, Aston Clinton, said she was walking on the Aylesbury-road between 8 and 8.30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 25, and proceeded in the direction of Aylesbury for about mile. When returning to Aston Clinton she met a motor cycle going towards Aylesbury. There were two soldiers on it, the one driving being in khaki, and the other, on the carrier, in blue uniform. They were travelling on the left side, and her attention was attracted by the fast pace at which they wore going. Shortly after they had passed her her attention was attracted a sudden stoppage of the noise of the engine. She looked round but could not see the motor cyclists, although it was quite a light night. A little time afterwards a Red Cross ambulance van passed her. She thought it was going rather fast, but nothing out of the ordinary.

Private John Beaver, 21st Divisional Cyclist Corps, stationed at Aston Clinton, said was proceeding in the direction of Aston Clinton on Feb. 25. After he had paused Broughton Farm a motor van passed him. travelling in the centre of road. Witness was walking in company with Private John Lowe. and remarked to him that if they were in the ambulance they would not be long getting home. The ambulance was travelling at a moderate pace. He did not hear the horn sounded it passed. walked for about 300 yards, and then saw White and Thomas lying by the aide the road. Witness assisted in conveying the men to the hospital, and on the way White partially regained consciousness and enquired for his machine He also complained of pain in his leg. Witness did not hear the ambulance stop or the engine slow down.

By Mr. Coles: He was about 300 yards from the men, but heard no crash.

Mr. Robert Howe, of Aston Clinton, said he left Aylesbury at eight o'clock on Feb. 25 with his 'bus, to go to Aston Clinton. Between the Weston Turville turning and Mr. Fowler's farm a motor ambulance van passed him. Previous to its passing he heard a horn sounded. The speed of the ambulance was quite moderate; in his opinion at the rate of from 15 to 20 miles an hour. About beyond Mr. Fowler's farm he found the deceased men by the side of the road, being attended by Brill. They were placed in his conveyance, and brought them to the hospital. The road was in good condition, and he did not think the sides of the road were in a condition make skidding easy.



Mr. William Edward Plater, cycle engineer, Aston Clinton, stated that on Thursday, Feb. 25, about 7 p.m., Lance-Corporal White hired the motor bicycle produced that day. Witness understood that he was going to Tring. He told deceased that the bicycle was a light machine, and warned him not to ride "two up." By that he meant he was not to carry a passenger. The bicycle was in good condition, being in fact the machine on which deceased had learnt to ride a week or more previously. Deceased had gained sufficient experience of the machine to manage it thoroughly, and had ridden it three or four times during the previous week. ...


Private Thomas Richard Skinner, the driver of the motor ambulance van. expressed his willingness to give evidence, and was warned in the usual way by the Coroner, being informed that he need not give evidence likely to incriminate himself. Witness stated that he was residing at Langdon-street, Tring, and was a private in the Motor Transport, A.S.C. On the evening in question he was engaged in driving a motor ambulance van. Before joining the Army he owned a car, and had had considerable experience in driving motor cars. He had also passed the Army test before being admitted to the A.S.C.. and had had six years experience in motors. He left Tring about 2.30 p.m. on Feb. 25 and journeyed to Aylesbury. He afterwards proceeded to Leighton Buzzard, and reached Aylesbury again about six o'clock. He left at eight o'clock to return to Tring. He was accompanied by Private Middleton, who rode inside the van. Previous to starting on the journey he lit the two head lamps and the tail lamp. He did not know that it was necessary to light the side lamps when there were head lights, or that it necessary to have the side lamp on the extreme right of the body of the car alight. He knew the road from Aylesbury to Aston Clinton quite well, as he had driven over it so many times. He did not remember noticing light approaching him after he had passed the turn to Weston Turville on the evening in question, although several might have done. When he left Aylesbury his first stop was at Tring, where he arrived about 8.25 p.m. On the way he felt mo impact against his car. He could not remember suddenly applying his brakes, though he might have done so. He could not recall any special occasion requiring him to do so. There was nothing of any special nature to attract his attention between Aylesbury and Tring. He did not examine the ambulance van when got to Tring that night. From Aylesbury to Aston Clinton he travelled about to 25 miles hour. had complete control of the van, and was quite sober. Private Middleton rode inside the ambulance because it was a very cold night. Witness had had no intoxicating liquor between six and eight o'clock that night, and had not visited any licensed premises. ... Witness saw Lance-Corporal White at Tring with a motor cycle a few days previously, and assisted him in making it go. ...

Private Arnold Middleton ... stated that was a driver of a motor ambulance, and had had twelve months experience in driving motor vehicles. He was in company with Skinner on the evening in question. rode inside the ambulance it was a cold night. During the journey his attention was not attracted by anything special.


P.S. Tucker, stationed at Aylesbury, said on Friday, Feb. 26, he proceeded to a spot about a quarter of a mile from Mr. Fowler's farm, in the direction of Aston Clinton. The metalled portion of the road was 18ft. wide. On examination he found a quantity of glass from a cycle lamp about 5ft. from the edge of the road. ... there wore no marks indicating that a motor brake had been quickly applied, or that anything had skidded at the spot. ...

Mr. Henry Hobson, Langdon-street, Tring, with whom Private Skinner is billeted, stated that Skinner arrived home about quarter to nine on Feb. 25. and was perfectly sober. In fact, he was a teetotaller.


Lieutenant Alexander Wm. Rattrie. R.A.M.C., said he was at present acting surgeon at the Royal Bucks Hospital. The deceased men were admitted the hospital about 9.10 p.m. on Feb. 25. Lance-Corporal White was suffering from various severe injuries. He was conscious, but suffering from shock. Witness ascertained that had sustained various fractures to the right arm, shoulder, and leg. Private Thomas, who was unconscious, was suffering from internal haemorrhage. Thomas died at twenty minutes past ten and White at eight minutes to eleven the same evening. Witness had a conversation with White, who informed him that was a Wesleyan. Witness asked him if he was knocked down by a motor, and he replied "No." Witness said, "How did it happen ?" but he did not answer. was extremely dazed. Deceased evidently understood the questions put to him.  ...


The Coroner said in that very sad inquiry he must ask the jury to rely on ths evidence which had been given, and not to allow any outside conversations or prejudices to come into their consideration. The evidence seemed to point clearly to the fact that the deceased men collided with the ambulance van, and so met their death. The jury had to enquire whether anyone was responsible for causing the collision, or whether some other circumstances operated to bring the two vehicles together. If they came to the conclusion that Skinner was responsible, then they must satisfy themselves that he was driving the ambulance van in such way as not to have proper control. In reviewing the facts brought out in evidence, the Coroner directed the jury as to the verdict they might return, defining the legal position very clearly, especially in regard to verdicts ofmanslaughter.


The Foreman said the jury were unanimously of opinion that it was purely accidental, and their verdict was one of "Death from misadventure.” They would like the Coroner to take note of their opinion that the military authorities should be cautioned about the construction of these motor ambulances. The evidence showed that the head lights were 18in. from the outside of of the van, and therefore likely to deceive anyone passing. It was possible that the construction of the van was the reason of the collision.

The Coroner — lf it is the wish of the jury that I should write to the military authorities expressing that opinion. I will do so.

The Foreman — We desire that you should do so.

Mr. Plater — I think we should also like exonerate the driver of the motor ambulance van from all blame. The inquiry concluded at nine o'clock, having lasted for five hours.


There was inspection of the Cyclist Corps by General Sir E. Hutton, commanding the 21st Division, at Aston Clinton Park on Friday morning, Feb. 26. General Hutton, addressing the troops, referred to the sad fatal accident which had befallen Lance-Corporal White and Private Thomas, expressing his regret at the loss of two such promising young members of the Corps.

Major Vaughan has also testified to the personal regret he feels at the loss of the two men from the Corps he has the honour of commanding.


The bodies were conveyed by motor ambulance to Dewsbury on Sunday, the funeral taking place on Monday, Each hearse was preceded by a firing party from thw Reserve Regiment of the King's Yorkshire L.I., and Lieut. Duke, with twelve non-commissioned officers and men of the Divisional Cyclist Corps at Aston Clinton, attended as a bearer party. The service was conducted at the Wesleyan Cemetery Chapel, the officiating ministers being the Revs. J. F. Bailey, E. Hopkins, and C. Whiteley. Three volleys were fired at the graveside, and the sounding of the "Last Post" concluded an impressive service. The floral tributes included beautiful wreaths from the deceased men’s comrades at Aston Clinton.




March 2015


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