Home Page
Main War Memorial Page
a general page for these particular years
of remembrance, plus the 2013
Remembrance Service

The names of the following five men have been added to our War Graves Photo page.


Some of these names have been missing from our war graves page ever since we started, some 16 years ago, when I first posted what I thought was a complete list of Sutton's war dead. It was simply because I did not know any were missing, though I did hear mention over the years of some 'ommisions'. It was only a chance overhearing of a conversation with our churchyard maintenance man, Jamie (who now has to do the job by himself), that made me aware of more details. From that, I could examine more closely the Monumental Inscription booklets, and sure enough, the names above became more clear. Stanley Parrott, the Rowntree brothers, and Charles Westoby are listed on the war memorial itself, but their ommission from the graves page, along with the Frankish brothers and Thomas Selby, was my mistake. I hope this has righted a grevious wrong, and put matters to rights.
Rob H

I can only say that the evening service, both in the church, at the memorial, and the candle-lit vigil that followed, was all that we could ask. Moving and sensitive, handled with professionalism, I think that the servicemen and women we remembered would consider that we did their memory proud. We collectively recognised what they gave, and I think most folks present were very aware, and grateful, of what they gave it for.

Again, we in the Old School Museum wish to pay tribute to the work of the RBL, both present and former members of the Sutton branch, over this past 90 years or so, for all they have done in keeping alive the collective promise the nation made all those years ago . . . "We Will Remember Them."

In all our discussions when planning the August Commemoration, we tried to keep in mind what former branch members would have wished us to do. It is largely through those hundreds of past members' efforts, and those of their wives and friends that helped them, that we are where we are now.

And so now, we will remember you too, dear friends, and promise to pass on to following generations how the Sutton Branch also remembered and paid tribute to their fallen comrades from all wars, over the past 10 decades.

Research on all of the names on the memorial is now well in hand. The first 36, of Sutton men carved in stone on the memorial itself, have already been completed, and in addition, there may be another half-dozen or so names that we feel were missed from the original inscriptions. The details of more of these men is now on display in the museum at our exhibition inside the Old School and over the Commemoration Weekend.


Work on this is now well advanced, and progresses slowly but surely, as I'm sure all who are involved in genealogy and military research will well appreciate. Not something to be rushed, details are easier to find on some men, and much harder on others. But we're getting there.

We still welcome contact from any descendants and relatives, with any extra information they may wish to give us. We implore anyone who knows of a casualty in their family, one not already recognised on those original rolls, to contact us or their ward councillor, and give those details. This really is the last chance to set the record straight.

We have until May 2018 to complete this, after which date no further submissions can be accepted, and the lists as they then stand will be published. The new stone scrolls bearing any additional names will be then be inscribed ready for the Armistice Day service in November of that year, itself being the centenary of the end of the Great War. We anticipate a period of 6 months will be required to make the neccessary arrangements and to have all the newly inscribed scrolls ready for November, 2018, hence the cut-off date of May.

(We can now say that, in a joint effort between several parties, notably Councillor Terry Keal, Charlie Dinsdale RN Rtd and Paul Bishop, an astonishing 230 or so extra names have been identified to be added to the new scrolls. More details to be announced soon. All opportunities for private submissions for a relative's name to be added are now closed.
16 May 2018)

Largely as a result of information from Jamie, now our lone keeper of the churchyard, I have finally added photos of 5 family graves and memorials which also contain remains of, or tributes to, more of Sutton's war dead. Four are from the First World War, and one memorial stone from the Second containing the names of two brothers, a seaman and an airman lost within months of each other.

The First War graves mainly date from the time before the war ended and long before the CWGC was founded and decisions made about standardised headstones for war casualties. Hence all over the country, many war dead are lying in family graves that are never marked with a British Legion cross as a mark of respect, unless surviving relatives put them there themselves. We intend to try to see this is put right in Sutton in future, and all 19 graves and memorials will be so marked every year.

The CWGC are aware of 3 of these 5, and indeed, are included in the payment made to churches and parish councils for their maintenance, of which Sutton also receives a small sum. So in total, the CWGC pay towards the upkeep of 17 graves, and not just 14 as we've always thought. And as of 8 November, in time for Armistice Sunday on the 9th, all 5 graves with the names of 7 men have had their photos and details added onto our War Graves Photo Page. The names of the 7 men added are in the panel just above here.

8 Nov 2014 -- Rob Haywood


Further to me saying that we have had no success at all in finding out any more about the memorial itself, it turns out that some records are indeed in Beverley at the Treasure House. It seems that our war memorial was paid for by Public Subscription - as indeed many were - and the sum required at the time to have a loved one's name added was 2/-. It seems such a tiny amount now, 10p today, but when a lot of low-paid working men only earnt 30/- a week, then 2 of those shillings was a quarter of the way to paying the rent. As such, many simply could not do it, and by the time they could or changed their minds, it was too late, the stones were cast or carved. As alluded to above, we aim to put much of that right.


There are in total nineteen official war graves and memorials in Sutton-on-Hull churchyard. This page has been amended, because as has been pointed out, there are three men who died during the First War who are buried in family graves rather than under the more recognisable Commonwealth War Graves headstones. There are also one other family grave, and one family memorial containing two names. The names of the 7 men added are in the top panel just above here.

The War Graves notice on the churchyard gate There are fourteen CWGC headstones, of which six are from the Great War, and eight from the Second World War. All six of the GWGC Great War graves are of men not of this local area, though two of them were in what may be described as our 'local' unit, the East Yorkshire Regiment. The remaining four were in other units, the Lancashire Fusiliers, the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, and the Machine Gun Corps. As far as we can tell, sadly, there are no surviving 'full service records' for any of them. So we cannot be sure where any of them actually came from.

Although they are buried here, those from 'away' are almost certainly remembered in their own home towns or villages on their own memorials, just as Sutton men are remembered on ours. Should someone recognise a name, and seeing the regiment and service number then realise it is the same man, we'd be grateful if they could let us know. Otherwise, it's a case of wait and see if, one day, any of their family contact us, from which we may glean more information.

The eight men buried here from the Second World War are also mainly from away, one of them from a long, long way away. One is again from the East Yorkshire Regiment, and one each from the Royal Engineers and Royal Artillery. Two are from the Royal Army Service Corps, and three from what was then the newest service of all, the Royal Air Force. Two of those, we think, were based at the local air station, RAF Sutton on Hull, which was in fact the base of a barrage balloon squadron for the provision and maintenance of the barrage balloons that protected Hull from low level air attack. It is not widely known that several RAF men were killed during Hull's blitz when manning barrage balloon sites ashore around the city, or on the barges moored in the Humber.

It's even more difficult to find details on seven of these men because their Second War service records are not yet generally available to the public, only to their immediate families. But we know a good bit about the eighth, paradoxically because he was from the furthest away. He was an Australian airman, a pilot killed in the Battle of Britain, who lies in our churchyard only because he married a local girl when he was stationed in Cornwall. He died in a head-on collision between his Spitfire and a Dornier, over Surrey, and because his next of kin was now his wife of only six weeks, and she came from Sutton, his body was brought back here for burial. Otherwise, he would have been buried in Surrey, near to where he fell. We have a lot more details about him on this page, HERE.

As you can see in the photo above, the City Council have now placed a notice to the churchyard gate, pointing out that there are Commonwealth War Graves inside the churchyard to the rear. You'll see the gate when in the car park in front of the Church Hall. It is hoped that folk who visit our newly refurbished memorial will also take the time to pop into the churchyard, just at the back of the memorial, and remember our 'other seventeen' servicemen, and perhaps leave a flower.

Of course, Sutton folk have known of the existance of these graves all along, and it is merely an accident of geography and design that with the memorial being totally enclosed by trees and shrubs, the cemetery itself is 'hidden away' around the back. So visitors may not realise that it is there, let alone how to get into it. At first glance, the walkway up the ramp to the church hall looks as if it may be a private drive. And yes, if visiting the churchyard, you can park there. If you do, please be aware that parking is very limited, so please do park 'tidily' with consideration for others. There is another free car park just the other side of the Old School and Museum.

This Google Map is now more up-to-date, with the memorial itself easily viewed even from this angle. Even so, when standing inside the memorial garden, there is little clue as to what resides behind the high brick wall at the back. Perhaps this image will help. Since this image was posted, the bus stop has been moved some distance 'behind' the camera.

the notice reads, At This Location, There Are . . .
The way up the side ramp to our cemetery
(picture courtesy of Google Maps)

A page of photos of all the war graves in our churchyard,
and further web links, can be seen HERE

Home Page
Main War Memorial Page


A few images of this year's Remembrance Service
at the Sutton on Hull War Memorial

Our final view of the war memorial today was taken before the service, the now fading wreaths of the August 4th commemorations laid to one side in preparation for today's service. The shrubs, having been extensively cut back at the time the new paving slabs were laid, afford us the view to the church that once was to be had before, decades ago, when our War Memorial was first consecrated.

Further above, a lone veteran of more recent wars bows his head in tribute and ponders Binyon's words on our new plaque, words he will have heard at innumerable services during his long career. Further above still are the two poppy planters presented to us in the museum by the children of St James' School, and seen placed here on the altar in the church for our service.

A bit further down this page is a selection of images of last year's service. We can see how much the trees and shrubs, pretty though they are in their autumn finery, encroached upon the monument, and in times of high winds and storms, can pose some danger. Also visible in the photos below is the former gravelled area around the monument, no problem to the fit, but of considerable hazard to walking sticks and almost impossible to cope with in a wheelchair.

This view, also taken on Remembrance Sunday before the service, looks back towards the church from near 'our pilot's grave'.


A few images of last year's Remembrance Service
at the Sutton on Hull War Memorial

There are a few more photos of the service on
Monday evening, August 4th, on our Facebook page.

click individual smaller images for a slightly larger version
Use backspace button when done. Use F11 to hide toolbars.

another useful tip: Ctrl+F4 closes a tab window without closing the programme



An unusual poppy wreath was that laid by 'Charlie', an English Springer Spaniel and now retired 'War Dog'. It can be seen in close up in the photo upper right, the large RAMC wreath on the left. Now with his new owner, Phil Jones, who took charge of Charlie after he was badly injured on recent operations in Afghanistan, he made the most of the affectionate attentions of the crowd at this year's service. The wreath was to honour and remember all those military working dogs that have already been lost when helping our forces in theatres of war. Click his picture to see his medals!

Phil, a retired Para as you can see, regularly takes Charlie to give talks on the work of our War Dogs, those especially trained to sniff out explosives, to schools and other organisation. Charlie, you may be surprised to know, is also a 'Para', fully qualified having undergone two parachute descents himself, and is the mascot of the 2nd Battalion of the Parachute Regiment. He wears his wings on the other side of his hi-vis coat to his medals.

Our best wishes to all those men and women still out 'in theatre', and especially to Charlie's hard-working compatriot War Dogs, many of who suffer terrible injuries before they are retired. See this link to see more Information on Working War Dogs, and the valuable service they perform daily. Few people know that retired army dogs can be adopted, but beware, it is a hard ask to give these wonderful dogs a home. Like marriage, adopting a War Dog is an institution not to be entered into lightly. If you're sure you can do it, and the selection process is rigorous, believe me, then visit this Pets4Homes Site for your next bit of advice.

there's a few more photos a little further down this page,
as well as on the museum's Facebook pages.

our FACEBOOK page

The photo above is of Sutton churchyard from a more unusual direction. It has often occurred to me that men with surnames that are at the end of the alphabet always did get a raw deal when privileges and goodies were being handed out. The last to sign the register at school, last for dinner, the last in a named line-up in the forces, last in everything. And so it has often seemed to me in the case of our war dead, and the guys that come at the end of any list. Last in life, and then last in death as well. So it must have always seemed for Robert Wright. This is his headstone, sprinkled here with dappled November sunlight in the darker corner at the very north end of the churchyard. Probably the last war grave, in the far end of the churchyard, almost out of sight to most of our frequent visitors. In fact, none of the war graves are together, in a formal group. They are sprinkled around individually, buried where the next plot became available at the time of their deaths.

We in the museum have just embarked upon a lengthy project to compile a modern database of all of Sutton's war dead. In a four year rolling project, we hope to find and publish all the known details of every name on our memorial. Not just an initial and a surname, but who they were, where they or their parents lived, what regiment or ship, and if possible, when and how they died. So that's why I include Robert Wright here. By definition, and his name, he is at the end of our list for WW1. But just for once, let him be first.

Lest we Forget.

taken November 2013

click individual smaller images for a slightly larger version
each opening in a new window. Use F11 to hide toolbars.

another useful tip: Ctrl+F4 closes a tab window without closing the programme


If you press F11, or select View - Full Screen, these photos will appear
without the encumbrances of the top toolbars.
Just pressing F11 again brings them back.

Home Page
Main War Memorial Page


1938 and All That
being an outline of the causes of the Great War

You may well ask, what has 1938 got to do with anything, particularly the Great War? The quick answer is, Everything. Because of all that had gone before, and all that was about to happen after.

At the bottom of this page is to a link to an extraordinary article, of a lecture in fact, given by an unknown naval officer, in November of 1938. I say, 'unknown', as he simply signs himself M.C.R. And I include it here on this website for those fascinated enough with the origins of the tragedy of the Great War, and all the subsequent tragedies that followed. It gives the best summing up that I have ever seen of the main causes of what led up to that terrible August of 1914, and an equally keen insight into the terrible events that led directly to what followed. Just remember that within 3 years of this article being written, Hull city centre was largely reduced to rubble. That terrible event had its roots in what happened 24 years before, the centenary of which we mark this year.

The author, perhaps without realising it, brilliantly outlines the chain of events in the Germany of Bismarck's era and leading up to 1914, the Great War itself and how that war ended, through to the 1930s and the rise of the Nazi Party, and on to the Second World War, even though that hadn't started when he wrote this. I'd love to know who MCR really was. And did he survive the coming onslaught? I hope so, but we really don't know. His writing seems to show an awareness of his own impending fate.

It's a long read, and takes about 30 minutes. I recommend it to old and young alike, those with a good knowledge of those events, and also the younger students of history who may well be just delving into this momentous period of European history. I would say that anyone much younger than 14 would struggle to fully understand all that this article says, it was after all meant for other naval officers of good and broad education, from 18 year old Midshipmen upwards to more senior ranks. It appeared in the 1939 Spring Edition of a magazine called THE NAVAL REVIEW, the in-house magazine of the Royal Navy, along with lots of other articles and discussions of naval interest. Once read, anyone will have a far better appreciation of what 1914 was all about, and why it is so important to understand and remember it now, even after 100 years. I wish I could have read this when I was about 16 and first getting really interested in naval history and the origins of the two great wars that cast such a shadow over my family and would be such an influence on myself.

You must understand that, at the time of its publication just before the Second War, these articles were meant only for the eyes of officers of the Royal Navy, to give them some background of the situation Britain was then in, and some idea of what may well be facing them in the near future. On that score, it is amazingly prophetic. The writer hopes there will not be a war, but in his heart of hearts, he knows it's coming, and coming soon. A case of 'hope for the best', and 'prepare for the worst'. As we know, 'the best' did not happen. It's a classic example of the meaning of the phrase we have all become familiar with from the recent TV series, "A WARNING FROM HISTORY." My Goodness, it certainly was that.

To answer the question, 'what has 1938 got to do with anything?', the answer is simple. Munich. The previous September to this article appearing, in 1938, had seen what we now call The Munich Crisis, that last-ditched and doomed effort by the British Government, in particular Neville Chamberlain, to avert another European war. The Munich summit was designed to persuade Herr Hitler to reign in his European military adventures, with no more repeats of the recent 'annexation' of neighbouring countries like Czechloslovakia. It was well known even then that Poland was next on the list.

So the article was written as a lecture, and given in the November, only weeks after Chamberlain returned from meeting Hitler, famously stepping off his aeroplane and waving the piece of paper bearing Hitler's signature, declaring it meant 'Peace in Our Time.' Well, he was right in a way, it was, for just under another year. But for so many millions, their 'time' was just coming to an end. Many men of the Royal Navy, reading this article in 1939, would not be alive six years later when it all came to an end.

If you've got this far, you may well now want to "READ THE ARTICLE".


Home Page