Pant World War 1 Roll of Honour – Morton Parish

About the Moreton Roll of Honour

Following our press coverage of the 2018 Remembrance service and the mention of the lost World War 1 plaque from the hall, we were honoured to be gifted the roll of honour document for Morton Parish. At the time the name of the parish was spelt ‘Moreton’.

The village of Pant covers two parishes, Llanymynech and Morton. The hall itself lies within Morton, which is centred on the church of St Phillip and St James in the hamlet of Morton a few minutes north of us.

This unique item was donated by Mr John H Davis of Crickheath. It had been in his family home since 1919. At that time the house was occupied by Tom Whitfield, (cousin to Mr Davis’ grandmother ) and his family. Tom was a pillar of the local Methodist organisation and would have known many of those listed on the roll as friends and neighbours.

The document was gifted to the hall charity ‘for use as it shall choose’. Due to its age and fragility, we have decided to place the original item in the safekeeping of Oswestry Town museum on long-term loan. We have had some basic conservation carried out to ensure that it will not deteriorate, and the museum will keep it in a secure environment.

We have placed a high-quality photographic copy in the hall so that everyone who visits can see the document. This page tells you more about the men commemorated.

The names

The names are listed in order of their dates of death. Click on each name to see the commemorative certificate from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. These men are also commemorated on the war memorial pillar in Morton Churchyard. Inside the church is another version of this roll of honour, including the two Second World War dead of the parish.

Read about the men of the Llanymynech parish part of Pant lost in WW1 on this link. Information on the WW2 memorial plaque for the village can be found here.

Captain Charles Sidney Garnett-Botfield, 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment

Born in Rochdale and baptised there on 3rd November 1887. Son of the Rev. Charles Ramsay Garnett-Botfield and his wife Ida Mary, of Morton Vicarage.

He was wounded at Ypres on 31st October 1914 , and transferred to Boulogne with a shattered right leg. Sadly his condition worsened and he died in the hospital at Boulogne on 14th December 1914, aged 27. Mentioned posthumously in despatches for his gallantry in his last battle.

Unusually for a man who died abroad, his body was repatriated and he is buried in the churchyard at Morton. He is also commemorated on the memorials at Rossall School Chapel in Lancashire and Elleray Park School in Merseyside. More information and a photograph on this link. His gravestone is inscribed ‘Pro Patria’ – ‘for country’.

Private John Jones, 2nd Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

2nd Bn. King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, 6828. Born in 1881, son of John and Elizabeth Jones of No 2 Railway Terrace Cottages, Pant. Before the war he was employed on the London and North-West railway at Trench crossing.

He had served for eight years and spent four months at the front. He was killed in action in Belgium on 9 May 1915, aged 34, having been hit by a shell that exploded in his trench. His mother applied for his medals in 1920, when she was living at Blodwel Woods, Llynclys.

With no known grave, he is remembered on the Menin Gate memorial, Ypres, Belgium. Panel 47 and 49. Uniquely among these men, he is also commemorated on the Llanymynech War Memorial.

Sergeant Elijah Thomas Biggs, 1st Batallion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

The only match for this rank and regiment is of a Thomas Biggs, service number 5320. Born in Knockin, son of Elijah and Mary. KSLI records show that he enlisted in Welshpool about 1908, giving his residence as Llanfechain. Killed in action 25th May 1915. With no known grave, commemorated on the Ploegsteert Memorial, Hainault, Belgium.

Private John Robert Probert, 1st Battalion Royal Welch Fusiliers

Service number 6160.  Born 4th January 1879, son of John and Emma Probert of Ty Coch, Llynclys. Baptized as a Methodist on 30th March 1879. Married Edith Ann Evison (born 1877) in 1910 – she later lived at 41 Council Houses, St Martins. In 1911 he had been a boarder at Ferndale in Pant with the Clark family, and was recorded as a ‘rockman’, working at the quarry at Porthywaen. At the time Marcia and her daughters were living in St Martins with her parents.

John Probert enlisted at Oswestry in the Army Reserve aged 38 in late 1914,  and was killed in action 25th September 1915 aged 38. With no known grave, he is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Pas-de-Calais, France.

Edith was ineligible for a widow’s grant, although a pension was paid to her daughter Marcia Winifred, John’s stepdaughter. Such pensions stopped at age 16 so Edith’s elder daughter Dorothy Adelaide did not receive one. Marcia married Arthur Green and died just before her 100th birthday in 2004.

Private Chas. Edward Wilfred Rowlands, 6th Batallion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Recorded as Charles Rowlands on the army information. The second of the three sons of William and Mary Jane Rowlands of the Firs, Crickheath Hill. He was born in Oswestry in late 1893 and a groom by profession. Enlisted in Oswestry in November 1914, service number 15736. Landed in France December 1915.

Killed in action 1st July 1916, aged 22. Buried at Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery, West Vlandeeren, Belgium. Also commemorated on the Llanyblodwel war memorial.

Private John Christopher Edwards, 1st Battalion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Service number 19790. Born in Morton in 1887 and lived at Gronwen Cottage, and worked as a waggoner.  He married Fanny (nee Whittall) in 1910 and was a labourer at Trelydan Hall near Welshpool. They had two sons (John Christopher and Thomas James) and a daughter named Dorothy Myfanwy who died in February 1917 at the age of three. He enlisted in Oswestry.

John Edwards was killed in action on 26th July 1916. With no known grave, he is commemorated on the Menin Gate Memorial at Ypres, Belgium.

Fanny was recorded at 2 Sycamore Cottage, Moreton, rather than Gronwen Cottage. She married Sergeant Chas Hackett (service number 49612) in November 1917. They later moved to Canada – Fanny is recorded arriving at St John, New Brunswick in December 1922 to join her husband in Ontario.

Private John Davies, Kings Royal Rifles

The Wildings, Sweeney Mountain.  Rifleman David John Davies, service number R/13072 of the 7th Battalion. Son of Thomas and Elizabeth Davies. Born in Cardiff in 1896. Enlisted in Market Drayton in 1915. Died of wounds from the battle of the Somme on 15th September 1916, aged 19. Buried at Guard’s Cemetery, Somme, France.

His pension was awarded to his mother, following the death of his father in early 1919.

Private Thomas Lewis Jones, 1st Battallion Shropshire Yeomanry

Service number 1748, born in Denbighshire in 1882. Husband of Martha Ann Jones (born 9 September 1881), of Chapel House, Sweeney Mountain – they married in 1905. The 1911 census shows them living there with her father John Evans and a nephew John William Jones. Thomas worked as a farm worker and took his horse with him to war.  He may have been a volunteer, although conscription was extended to married men in May 1916.  His service number was 1748. Died 24th October 1916 aged 34. Originally buried at Minia War Cemetery and reinterred in 1960 at Cairo War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt.

He left Martha with a small son John William Jones (born 18 December 1905) and she received his pension of 26 shillings per week, although the records did not record the existence of their son. His wife remained in the house until her death in the early sixties, and never remarried – a keen gardener, she was known locally as ‘Annie up the garden’. She is buried with her parents, John and Martha, at St Phillip and St James, Morton. John William married Mary and was recorded on the 1939 register  at no 9 Belle Vue, Oswestry. He died in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire in 1981.

Private Henry Gittins, 8th Battalion Royal Welch Fusiliers

Service number 12567. Born in Llandrinio in 1892, the third of the seven children of Elizabeth and George Gittins, a confectioner and grocer. The family lived at Wern Villa, Crickheath until his parents separated in 1910, shortly before the apparent suicide of his father on the railway at Llynclys.

A butcher by trade, he enlisted in Wrexham, where he was living in  Chester Road in Gresford in 1911 as a boarder in the Roycroft household. Died of wounds in Mesopotamia on 28th March 1917, aged 26. With no known grave, he is commemorated on the Basra Memorial, Iraq, the Gresford War Memorial and also on the family headstone in Morton churchyard. His pension was left to his mother.

Two of his brothers later started a garage and bus company from Crickheath, which ran until their retirement in 1966. The eldest brother, George, was also a butcher, and his suicide by gunshot in Corwen was reported in 1915. Father, mother and sons are all commemorated on the gravestone in Morton.

Private Robert Evans (Bob Edwards), 7th Batallion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Robert Evans is recorded under service number 15694, and was from Treharris in Glamorgan. He died of wounds in France on 13th May 1917. Buried at Etaples Military Cemetery.

The CWGC records show that he was the nephew of ‘N Harris’ of Yew Tree Cottage, Moreton Common. More detailed records show that this is Mrs Mary Harris (nee Edwards), listed as his aunt and sole legatee.

A Robert Edwards is listed at Yew Tree Cottage in 1891, the grandson of the household head John Edwards, Mary’s father. It is unclear why two names are recorded on the roll of honour for this man.

Robert Evans is also commemorated on the Cambrian Railways employee memorial, now in Cae Glas Park in Oswestry. This would further explain his connection to the area.

Also see the entry for Sapper Edward Harris at the end of this page; a son of Mrs Mary Harris.

Private Edward Roberts, Royal Garrison Artillery

Gunner Edward Roberts, service number 69903, of the 120th siege battery, Royal Garrison Auxiliary. Born in 1887, one of the ten children of Thomas and Sarah Roberts, Primrose Cottage, Sweeney Mountain. Baptised May 22 1887 at Moreton Church.

Gnr Edward Roberts (courtesy Mr and Mrs R Owen)

Educated locally and worked as a labourer. He enlisted in Manchester on the 22nd February 1916 aged 28 years and 10 months. He gave an address of  21 Henry Street, Gorton, Manchester, which was the address of his sister, Alice Ann Lloyd, wife of William Cooper Lloyd. He gave his profession as ‘blacksmith’s striker’, and also worked in munitions in Manchester before enlisting.

He landed in Boulogne on 15th July 1916. He fell sick in February 1917 and returned to duty on the 20th March. He was killed in action by a shell on 12th August 1917 aged 30,while serving with the British Expeditionary Force in France. His parents were notified in a letter from the Army Record Office in Dover, dated 29th August 1917. Some letters, photos and cards were returned to his mother in November 1917. She was also sent his War and Victory medals. The Major of his battery described him as ‘ a sterling fellow who will be missed by all’.

He is buried at the Huts cemetery, West Vlandeeren, Belgium. As he was unmarried, his parents received a war pension for him until their deaths in 1921 and 1927. His parents later moved to Chapel House in Whittington, and some of his siblings migrated to Rhode Island, United States. Two of his cousins, brothers Joshua and John Chetwood, were also killed in action and are commemorated on the Cae Glas park gates memorial in Oswestry.

Corporal Arthur Pearce MM, 7th Batallion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Service number 15695. Born in Shrewsbury around 1881, the son of Mrs Mary Pearce of 2 Schoolhouse Bridge, Crickheath. She is recorded there on the 1911 census, living with another son William and daughter Edith. Enlisted at Cefn in November 1914 and landed in France 19th December 1915. He was originally posted as ‘wounded and missing’, but died of wounds on 26th September 1917 aged 38, possibly as prisoner of war. With no known grave, he is remembered on the Tyne Cot memorial, West Vlandeeren, Belgium. He was awarded the Military Medal for ‘Gallantry in the Field’.

A pension of 7 shillings a week was awarded to his mother from 1918. His youngest brother enlisted as Private William Pearce (born around 1891) also of the KSLI, (service number 15696) . He appears to have survived the war.

Private John Lloyd, 7th Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Service number 12356. Son of Richard and Elizabeth Lloyd (nee Evans). The family moved around Shropshire, but by the time of the war had settled at 3 Canal View, Crickheath. Born in Nobold, Shropshire and enlisted in Oswestry during October 1914. Landed in France on 24/07/15 with 6th KSLI. Wounded some time between 30th June and 1st July 1916 while in the Railway Wood-Y Wood sector, Ypres. Then posted to 7/K.S.L.I, but died of wounds on 2nd October 1917 aged 28. Buried at Lissenthojek Military Cemetery, West-Vlandeeren, Belgium.

Private Richard Thomas Lloyd, 5th Battalion Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Service number 11417. Son of Mr R Lloyd of 3 Canal View, Crickheath – brother to Private John Lloyd of the same address. He enlisted at Shrewsbury into the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, and after training at Pembroke Dock was posted to their 5th Battalion, which was attached to 42 Brigade, 14th (Light) Division. The division saw active service at Loos and the Somme among many others. Richard was wounded during the final stages of the second battle of Passchendaele, and died at a Casualty Clearing Station on 23 October 1917. He was 30 years old, and is buried at Godewaersvelde British Cemetery, Belgium. He is also commemorated on the KSLI memorial at Pembroke Dock.

The dependants pension card for their mother has both John and Richard listed on it – the paperwork for John was still being processed when Richard was added to it.

Thank you to the West Wales War Memorial project for some of this information.

Lance Corporal Jesse Kendrick, 25th Battalion Royal Welch Fusiliers

Service number 355145. Formerly 2049 Montgomeryshire Yeomanry. Born in 1897 in Oswestry, the sixth and youngest son of Charles and Fanny Kendrick (nee Corbett), who had moved to Pear Tree Cottage Morton by 1901. Enlisted aged 18 in the Montgomeryshire Yeomanry (service no 2049) on 5th March 1914 at Oswestry for a term of four years. Transferred to the Royal Welsh Fusiliers in December 1916. He died on 31st October 1917 aged 21 – he was first reported wounded but was then found to have died of those wounds at the batallion first aid post. Buried at Beersheba War Cemetery, Israel.

He was a sawyer by trade, employed by David Davies.

Jesse Kendrick’s records survived the WW2 blitz. His parents were sent his effects: a muffler, a woolen cap, a belt, a hat, a gift box and photos. His medals were sent to them in 1922. The Reverend Garnett-Botfield witnessed the list of his relatives required by the government for a memorial scroll. His mother was awarded a pension of 7 shillings.

The inscription on his headstone reads ” I have fought the good fight, I have finished my course”.

Private William Lewis, 25th Batallion Royal Welsh Fusiliers

Service number 355347, and formerly 2884 of the Montgomeryshire Yeomanry. Son of Richard and Margaret Lewis, late of Buarth Glas, Llangynog, and worked at the Porth-y-waen limeworks before joining up. In 1911 lived at the Wildings, Sweeney Mountain where was an agricultural labourer for the farmer, Mr Jones. Married Catherine Davies in early 1915 – her father Thomas also lived at the Wildings.

He enlisted in May 1915 and was sent to Egypt in February 1916 before transferring to the Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Killed in action 31st October 1917 aged 34.

His records include a letter sent by his widow Catherine, dated 23rd November 1917. She writes: “he was my husband and no news of his death has yet reached me. The enclosed papers were sent to my husband’s home. Kindly let me know all particulars as early as possible. Yours faithfully, Catherine Lewis.’

She eventually received his effects, including a pair of spurs, an identity disc and his hymn book. She was awarded a weekly pension of 20 shillings for her and their son David William Lewis (1915 – 1998). She remarried to Edward Pugh in 1919 whose surname also shows on the CWGC records. William’s medals were forwarded to her in 1922.

William Lewis is buried at Beersheba War Cemetery. His headstone reads “Peace, perfect peace”.

He was one of eight brothers, all but two of whom served in World War 1. All survived their actual service, but eldest brother Richard died on 8th December 1919 from injuries incurred in a quarry accident. Fourth brother Thomas died of influenza on 11th November 1918 aged 28, the day that the armistice was declared. They are both buried at St Melangell in Llangynog, with CWGC headstones due to their service.

Private Robert Ellwood Ellison (Bob), Machine Gun Corps

He was baptised on 25th September 1898 at Moreton Church by the Reverend Garnett-Botfield, and was the son of John and Elizabeth Ann Ellison. At the time John Ellison was a schoolmaster and they lived at School House, Moreton until at least 1911  – that year’s census records both parents, Robert and his twin sister Kate. They had older siblings Douglas and Percy. His parents later moved to Tower View, Gobowen which is the address on the military records.

He enlisted in June 1917 at the age of 18. His service number was 116042 in the 6th Battallion Machine Gun Corps (Infantry), he had also served in the Shropshire Light Infantry as 33816. He was invalided from Cambrai in 1917 and remained in hospital at Etaples until March 1918. He returned to the Machine Gun Corps,  but was killed in action on 21st March 1918 aged 19 and his effects sent to his father. He had originally been listed as ‘missing’. He is buried in Queant Road Cemetery, Pas-de-Calais, France. A memorial service was held at Morton in May 1918.

His two brothers also served. Captain Douglas C Ellison, survived the full duration of the war, receiving his promotion in December 1918. Another brother, Sgt J Percy Ellison, was mentioned in despatches and awarded the military medal for service with the Royal Fleet Auxilary in Salonika. He had been a banker in Boston, USA at the outbreak of war.

Private Tom Frederick Lloyd,  1st Batallion South Wales Borderers

Service number 41143 of Ash Cottage, Crickheath.  Born in Moreton in 1898, son of Emily Maria Lloyd, stepfather David Robert Lloyd – Tom’s former surname was Mitchell.  Enlisted Shrewsbury and also served in the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry with number 27257. He trained at Pembroke Dock and was attached to the South Wales Borderers as a signaller.  Died of wounds on 18th April 1918, aged 19 – he was en route to the field hospital at the time having been wounded earlier that day. He is buried at Gorre British and Indian Cemetery, Pas-de-Calais, France.

Private Albert Edwin Higgins, 14th Welsh

Lived at Pear Tree Cottage, Crickheath. This looks to be Private Albert Edward Higgins, 15th Battalion Welsh Regiment. He was born in Welshpool in 1897, the son of David and Catherine Higgins, and is recorded with a residence of Crickheath. He was killed in action on 4th September 1918. Service number 56983 and also 3023 for the 1st Batallion Montgomeryshire Yeomanry. With no known grave, he is commemorated on the Vis-En-Artois memorial, Pas-de-Calais, France and on the Morton War Memorial.

Private Arthur Jones, 5th Kings Shropshire Light Infantry

Cockhale Cottage, Crickheath. No confirmed record found as yet – the 5th batallion was disbanded in February 1918 and the troops dispersed to other units. Nearest possible match: Private Arthur T Jones of the 7th batallion, service number 11416, died of wounds 7th October 1918 aged 26. Buried Mont Huon Military Cemetery, Seine-Maritime, France.

Son of Mr Edwin Jones of Wrockwardine.  Arthur Jones was born in Kinnerley and lived in Cressage, so the connection with Morton is not clear.

There are three official CWGC graves at Morton:

  • Captain Garnett-Botfield, listed above; the only one commemorated on the roll of honour and the only man to be repatriated to Morton after his death.
  • Gunner Dennis Robert Drayton of the Royal Artillery, born 1928. He enlisted on 4th April 1946 in the Royal Artillery training wing. aged 18. He died on 22 December 1947 from tuberculosis, but was still in service and so qualifies for a CWGC memorial.
  • Private John Jones, Royal Defence Corps: Born on 24th August 1857 in Welshpool, the son of Thomas and Sarah  Jones. Married Jane Davies in Oswestry in 1887.  A farm labourer by trade, he lived at Walnut Tree Cottage in Morton. Enlisted in Shrewsbury on 18th December 1876 aged 20 years, served in the 2nd and 4th battallions of the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry. Later joined the Royal Defence Corps, service number 18680. He served in India and was gassed, discharged 20th June 1916 and returned home. Died 3rd September 1916 aged 57, of peritonitis connected to the gas, and buried at St Phillip and St James, Morton with a CWGC headstone.

One more WW1 serviceman is also buried at Morton; Sapper Edward Harris. Because his death date was after the ‘cut-off’ for the CWGC commemoration, he does not have an official CWGC grave nor a record on their website. Nonetheless, he is listed on the Shropshire Roll of Honour with all his comrades, and also on this page.

Sapper Edward Harris, Royal Engineers
Born late 1896 in Kinnerley, the eldest of the six surving children of Edward and Mary Harris. They moved to Trefonen by the time of the 1901 census. By 1911 the family were living at Yew Tree Cottage, Morton Common, with Mary’s widowed father John Edwards. Edward worked as a quarryman.

Enlisted on 17th August 1914 in Oswestry, initially as a private in the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry with service number 10835. He transferred to the Royal Engineers on 28 February 1917, with service number WR28951. He served in the Road and Quarry troops division, working on the railways in France. His rank was then ‘sapper’ – a soldier responsible for building infrastructure and clearing mines.

He did rack up some disciplinary actions for drunkeness during his service, and was also wounded which resulted in a return to England in September 1916. A great deal of paperwork survives for him in the ‘burnt records’ although not all of it is legible.

He was honourably discharged from military hospital in Italy due to being ‘unfit for service’ on 20th February 1919, with a diagnosis of ‘neurasthenia’. We now know this as ‘shell shock’ or in modern terms, post traumatic stress disorder. He was awarded silver badge no B132902 – these badges were awarded to all those honourably discharged due to wounds or sickness. Wearing the badge with civilian clothes was intended to stop harrassment of men without visible wounds. He also received a military pension.

Edward Harris died at Cannock Chase Hospital on 4th November 1921 and is buried at Morton Church.

The statement of relatives completed by his mother in 1922 shows that his brothers Alfred, John and Thomas Herbert also served. He had two younger sisters, Gwennie and Elsie, and an uncle John Edwards living in Wrexham.


Note: This page is a work in progress. Further information or corrections are most welcome; please email secretary@pantmemorialhall.org.uk

“At the going down of the sun, and in the morning – we will remember them