Marlow Remembers WW1 - Contents
We provided an exhibition of our research as part of the Buckinghamshire wide World War One Commemoration event that was held in High Wycombe.
Bucks Hospital Sites
at 10.00am William Borlase School chapel, Marlow
2nd Lieutenant Basil Horsfall VC
Basil Arthur Horsfall, VC was born in Colombo in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) in 1887 to Maria and Charles William Horsfall, the youngest of four brothers. Along with all three of his elder brothers, he was educated at St Thomas’ College in Ceylon and then at William Borlase’s School in Marlow.
After completing his education at Borlase from 1903 to 1905, he worked briefly at Barclay’s Bank in London. On his return to Ceylon he first took up rubber planting. Later he was appointed as a Financial Assistant in the Public Works Department of the Civil Service. He also qualified in signalling and searchlight operation in the Ceylon Engineer Volunteers.
Following the outbreak of the Great War he was refused enlistment in the British Army for two years because of his status as a volunteer. Finally he was allowed to come to England where he followed an older brother into the 1st Battalion East Lancashire Regiment in December 1916. He was transferred to the 11th Battalion in October 1917 after injury and a spell of recuperation in a hospital in England. He won his VC in France in March 1918 during an action to stem a massive German offensive near Arras for his extreme bravery despite having been wounded. The citation for the award is attached. He died on the afternoon of the 27th March and his body was never found.
On the 27th March 2018 the Marlow Remembers WW1 Association and Borlase School held a commemoration of Basil Horsfall at the school. The service in the school chapel began at 10AM followed by a show of exhibits and archive material prepared by the Association and by students at the school.
2nd Lt. Basil Arthur Horsfall, late E.Lane. R.
For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty. 2nd Lt’. Horsfall was in command of the centre platoon during an attack on our positions.
When the enemy first attacked his three forward sections were driven back and he was wounded in the head. Nevertheless, he immediately organised the remainder of his men and made a counter-attack, which recovered his original positions.
On hearing that, out of the remaining three officers of his company, two were killed and one -wounded, he refused to go to the dressing station, although his wound was severe. Later his platoon had to be withdrawn to escape very heavy shell fire, but immediately the shelling lifted he made a second counter-attack and again recovered his positions.
When the order to withdraw was given he was the last to leave his position, and, although exhausted, said he could have held on if it had been necessary.
His conduct was a splendid example to his men, and he showed throughout the utmost disregard of danger.
This very gallant officer was killed when retiring to the positions in rear.
The above is an extract from Gazette Citation ( pdf 0.1mb )
Barclays Bank Photos 1906
Barclays Bank Photos 1906
Barclays Group Archives hold a set of 3 small photograph albums from the early 1900s showing staff of Barclays Bank at 54 Lombard Street “at work and play”. This image (of Basil Horsfall) is extracted from the photograph above from one of the albums. The photo has surnames written above and beneath it, and these have been used in conjunction with information from other Barclays Bank sources to identify the men.
We gave a talk to the Marlow Society Local History Group on 'Life on the Home Front: Marlow in 1917'. This was in the Garden Room at Liston Hall, Marlow at 8pm. Members £1.50, Visitors £3.00.
The photograph on the poster is local - a group of Marlow ladies and a few Girl Guides standing outside Martin's the chemist, now HSBC, in Marlow High Street. They are about to collect for the Red Cross during World War 1.
Battle of Passchendaele commemoration.
On Sunday 30 July, we held an event at The Causeway in Marlow to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the start of the Third Battle of Ypres, known as the Battle of Passchendaele.
Captain Hedley Foster letters (pdf 0.2mb) - the letters of local man, Hedley Foster who was killed during the Passchendaele campaign.
The event began with a short commemorative service led by the Town Mayor - Passchendaele Commemoration Service Sheet (pdf 0.1mb)
An exhibition about the battle and the Marlow men who participated in it was held at The Causeway throughout the day, attracting well in excess of 200 people from Marlow and elsewhere.
In addition, we held two guided walks at 11am and 2.30pm to show people sights in the town that are linked to the First World War. Around 30 people attended the guided walks. - view the Handout for World War One Walk July 2017(pdf 0.8mb)
George Silvey graveside commemoration
George Silvey was one of the servicemen who died during the war and are buried in Marlow. We held graveside commemorations on or close to the 100th anniversary of the death of these servicemen. On 28 June, we held a service for George Silvey who died in May 1917. We were delighted that relatives of George from Kent and Berkshire were able to join us for the commemoration service.
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