THESE ALSO GAVE THEIR LIVES
Wm B Berwick
Howard H Bucknell
Charles W Cooper
Percy C D Evans
Andrew T Callon
Lionel R James
Edward C Morgan
Reginald W Napier
A small war memorial plaque that was once on the Howardian High School organ.
In 1914 Howard Gardens School was taken over and converted into a military hospital. Other schools in Cardiff were similarly converted into military hospitals. Howard Gardens became the Headquarters of the Third Western General Hospital. Fifty five soldiers died in the hospital during WWI but no doubt many more were saved. It was not converted back into a school until 1920.
There was a small alter dedicated to the 65 soldiers who died in the hospital in All Saints Church, Adamsdown. The marble plaque for that alter was handed over to Howardian High School for safe keeping. It has now been mounted on a wall in Howardian Primary School.
Story behind the names on the WWI memorial tablet:
An ongoing piece of research is to look at the people behind the names on the war memorial. This can be somewhat challenging given that only the names appear and not for instance their regiment. Some doubt will always remain over whether the correct person has been identified. Where difficulties have been encountered identifying the person these are expressed. Perhaps others can help fill in the information.
William was born on 15th Oct 1898 in Barnstable Devon. His father William Henry Alford was a carpenter by trade. In 1901 the family are living at 23, Forrest Road, Canton, Cardiff. In 1904 the family are living at 5 Grouse Street in Roath and William is enrolled in Stacey Road Infants School, Cardiff having previously attended Grange School. In 1910 he is enrolled at Howard Gardens. In the 1911 census the family consisting of his father William Henry (42), Eliza (44) his mother, his sister Edith (3) and widowed grandmother Jane (75) and William (12) are still living in Grouse Street.
William enrolls in the 16th Royal Devon & R.Nth. Devon Yeomanry in Cardiff and his regiment number was 67705. He was awarded the following medals: Britain, Campaign, Gallantry & Long Service Medals & Awards. He died on 22nd Sep 1918 aged 20 in northern France. He is buried at Ronssoy Communal Cemetery (Section B, Grave 8) in the Somme region of France.
His name is also recorded on the Roath Parish WWI memorial in St Edwards church, Blenheim Road, Cardiff.
William Allan is a bit of a mystery. The school records show that a William Allan, born 8th Dec 1897, did enroll in Howard Gardens in October 1912 and left in December 1914. His father was also called William , worked as a Board of Trade Inspector and they were living at 22 Edington Ave (Cathays). The record states that William’s previous school was Anfield Road Elementary School in Liverpool. Having failed to find William Allan in the 1911 census for Cardiff I looked further afield and found him in Anfield, Liverpool, together with his father(37), mother Elizabeth Anna Allan (37) born in Holland, and brother Edward (7). The census states that both William and his brother Edward were born in Belgium. I then found his military record which shows that William Allan (b. 8/12/1897) survived the war and was a Lieutenant in the RAF and served till at least 1928. This seems to indicate he was not the William Allan on the memorial board, or an error was made. There was a William Allen enrolled at Howard Gardens in 1898. He lived in Paget St and was born in December 1885. I haven’t been able to match this person with any WWI Military Record or War Grave.
HUGH TAYLOR ALLEN
Corporal, 1st battalion, East Surrey Regiment (Service Number 36576)
Hugh Taylor Allen was born on 23rd Sep 1896 in Basford, Nottinghamshire to Thomas Holtom Allen, a clerk, originally from Stratford on Avon, and Robina Allen née Munro originally from Scotland. The Allen family appears to have moved regularly given that Hugh’s siblings were born in various places in England, though in the 1901 and 1911 census the family are settled in Cardiff. In 1911 the family are living in 119 Tewkesbury Street, Cathays and Hugh attends Howard Gardens Secondary School. When Hugh Allen signs up for the East Surrey Regiment and states his profession as a Pupil Teacher and living at 22 Salisbury Road, Cathays. He dies on 21st May 1918 but has no known grave and is remembered on panel 6 of the Ploegsteert Memorial in Belgium. He is also remembered on the Howard Gardens Memorial now in Howardian Primary School. Commonwealth War Graves Commission record.
THOMAS JOHN EDMUND ANSTEY
Corporal, City of London Yeomanry (Rough Riders), (Service Number 1613)
Thomas ‘Tom’ John Edmund Anstey was born in Cardiff on 27th Aug 1884 to Thomas Henry Anstey, a railway clerk, originally from Llangattock, and Eliza Hannah Anstey née Morse originally from Cheltenham. His mother dies in 1888 when he is only four and Tom goes to live with his grandmother in Henllys, Monmouthshire. He attended primary school at Hafodyrynys School, Monmouthshire and then returned to Cardiff to attend Cardiff Higher Grade School (Howard Gardens). By 1901 he had moved to live with his aunt in Wandsworth London. He worked as a clerk at the Finsbury Circus Branch of the Capital and Counties Bank. He joined the City of London Yeomanry in October 1909 and is promoted to Corporal in 1914. When war breaks out he volunteers for foreign service and went to Egypt with his regiment in April 1915 and from there to Suvla Bay, Gallipoli in August. He is killed in action on 6 Oct 1915 aged 31. That night he was covering a party of Royal Engineers who were erecting a barbed wire entanglements about 50 yards from the Turkish trenches. He is buried at Green Hill Cemetery in Gallipoli. The Commonwealth War Records Commission record for Tom records his father living at 17 Dalton Street, Cathays. Tom is remembered on the Howard Gardens memorial in Cardiff, and with a memorial plaque at Church of St Michael and All Angels, Llantarnam and one at St Ann’s Church in Wandsworth. During the period from 1905 to 1914 Tom became very interested in researching both his family ancestry and the Anstey surname. His great-nephew has since taken up the research and published a book on the Anstey surname authored by Gary Anstey and posthumously by his great-uncle Tom.
CHARLES EDWARD ASPLIN
Private, 9th Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment (Service Number 15856)
Charles Edward Asplin was born in the summer of 1895 in Cardiff to Charles John Asplin,a postman and Sarah Asplin née Samuel from St Fagans, Cardiff. He attended Cardiff Higher Grade School (Howard Gardens) and the family lived were living at Bruce Street, Cathays in 1901 and then 58 Gelligaer St, Cathays in 1911. Charles Edward Asplin followed his father and worked as a postman. He signed up for the South Staffordshire Regiment as a transport driver aged 19 and serves on the Western Front. He was killed on 23rd December 1915 is buried at the Sailly-sur-la-Lys cemetery in eastern France. He is remembered on the Howardian war memorial plaque and the Cardiff Post Office workers plaque. Commonwealth War Graves Commission record.
WILLIAM THOMPSON ATKINSON
Second Mate, Mercantile Marine, S.S. “Torrington”
William Thompson Atkinson was born in 1888 in Cardiff to Captain William Thompson, a master mariner originally from Corbridge, Northumberland, and Elizabeth Atkinson née Davies. He was probably born in the Canton area of Cardiff but the family later move to 39 Crwys Road and William attends Cardiff Higher Grade School (Howard Gardens). He followed his father into the merchant navy but loses his life in a cruel fashion. He was serving as Second Mate on the SS Torrington. On 8 April 1917 the ship was sailing from Italy to Cardiff to load coal for the Italian railways. Shortly after 11.30am she was torpedoed by a German submarine, 150 miles off the Isles of Scilly. The torpedo hit forward of the bridge. A submarine then surfaced and opened fire on the ship. Capt. Starkey ordered his men into the lifeboats, but the submarine came alongside. Capt. Starkey was ordered below deck of the U-boat, which he did thinking he could save his men. Some of the crew went on the deck of the U-boat, whilst others remained in a lifeboat. The captain of the U-boat then ordered the vessel to dive remarking that “the others could swim”. Through the submerging of the U-boat about 20 member of the Torrington’s crew were washed off and killed. The remaining crew in the lifeboat were never heard of again. In total thirty four members of the crew were killed and Capt. Starkey was the only survivor. Wilhelm Werner, the captain of the submarine, and his actions had become well known to the authorities and he was charged with war crimes. He should have been on trial at Leipzig, but he fled to Brazil and was never tired for his crimes. William Atkinson is remembered on the Tower Hill memorial for merchant seamen in London and the Howardian war memorial plaque. Commonwealth War Graves Commission record.
THOMAS ALFRED ATWILL
Private, 10th Battalion, Australian Infantry, A.I.F. (Service Number 299)
Thomas Alfred Atwill was born in Dover in 1875. He was the oldest son of Sarah Helen Atwill née Gerard, from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada and Thomas Atwill, a Sergeant Major in the Royal Artillery, who were married in Canada in 1872. Thomas Alfred Atwill was baptised on 30th April 1875 in Dover Castle. The family then move to Cardiff and in 1881 are living at 80 Clifton Street. In 1891 they were living at the Drill Hall in Dumfries Place. He attends Cardiff Higher Grade School (Howard Gardens). The family then move to Walkhampton in Devon and are there in 1901 and 1911 but sometime later return to Cardiff and live at 7, Richmond Crescent. Three of the sons emigrated from the UK to Australia prior to the outbreak of World War I to try their hand at gold-mining. Prior to emigrating Thomas Alfred Atwill had served Glamorgan Volunteers Artillery. He enlists in the Australian Infantry in 1914, sails for Europe but is killed in action on 19th May 1915 aged 40 at Dardanelles, Gallipoli. He is buried in Shrapnel Gully, Gallipoli. Two of his brothers also die in WWI. He is remembered on a number of memorials in Australia, one in the village of Walkhampton in Devon and on the Howardian School memorial plaque in Cardiff. Commonwealth War Graves Commission record.