Penrhynside war memorial FWW

First Word War (1914-18)

Below are details of the men with connections to Penrhynside who died in the First World War. They were Privates, except where a different rank is shown.

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  • Leonard Astley Bowker, Serjeant, M2/113531, died 29/10/1918. Army Service Corps, M.T Depot (Isleworth). Buried at Layton cemetery, Blackpool. He was born in Radcliffe, Lancs, in 1891 and by 1914 his mother and sister were living in Llanrhos Road, Penrhyn Bay.The ASC’s job was to keep the front line supplied with vital food and equipment. By September 1916 Leonard had been wounded and suffered from shell shock. It is likely that he died of his war wounds in a hospital in Blackpool, shortly before the end of the war.
  • Frederick Cox, 5628, died 21/08/1915, age 23. Royal Munster Fusiliers,1st Bn. Commemorated at Helles memorial, Turkey. Son of John and Mary Cox, of 9 Quarry Cottages, Penrhyn Bay; husband of Mary Cox, of 6, Windmill Lane, Crumlin, Co. Dublin.He was born in Belfast. His father had served with the Royal Irish Fusiliers. Frederick took part in the ill-fated assault on Gallipoli, which was meant to lead to the capture of Constantinople. He died during the failed attempt to seize Hill 112.
  • Arthur Thomas Clarke, 15530, died 03/07/1918, age 27. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 16th Bn. Buried at Varennes Military Cemetery, France. Son of Ellen and W A Clarke of Llandudno; husband of Jane T Clarke of Bryn Horeb, Great Ormes Head, Llandudno.
    His battalion was conducting reconnaissance on the Western Front when Arthur was killed in an enemy bombardment.
  • Edward Evans, 160396, died 30/11/1917, age 24. Royal Field Artillery "B" Bty. 298th Brigade. Buried at Vlamertinghe New Military Cemetery, Belgium. Son of Ann Parry of 3 Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside. Next door neighbour of William Glyndwr Owen – see below.His job as a driver was to care for the horses that pulled the heavy guns, usually six in a team. He would also ride horses when the battery was moving. He saw the allies capture Passchendaele on 6/11/1917 after one of the longest battles the world has ever seen, but he was killed several weeks later while the artillery continued its task of firing on the enemy.
  • Goronwy Evans, 310555, died 28/10/1917, age 20. Royal Garrison Artillery, 177th Siege Bty. Buried at Ypres Reservoir Cemetery, Belgium. Son of Daniel and Jane Evans of Wiga, Bryn Pydew, Llandudno Junction.
    Goronwy was taking part in artillery bombardment of enemy positions during the third battle of Ypres (Passchendaele) when his own position came under attack and he was killed, along with a young officer and sergeant.
  • John James Griffiths, 19087, died 23/07/1917. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 14th Bn. Buried at Bard Cottage cemetery, Belgium.
    John hailed from the Rhondda, in South Wales, and was a coalminer, like his father. While stationed in Llandudno with the RWF, he met Emily Roberts of Bryn Hafod, Penrhynside. They married in Conwy and she was pregnant with their daughter, Emrysena, when he died during preparations for the third battle of Ypres (known as Passchendaele).
  • Joseph Griffiths, 17402, died 07/12/1916, age 30. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 13th Bn. Buried at Essex Farm cemetery, Belgium. Husband of Jane A Owen, of Pen-y-Parc Cottage, Penrhynside.
    The Llandudno Advertiser reported in March 1916 that Joseph had been wounded. He died while his unit was stationed near the Pilckem Ridge, which was to be the scene of a battle the following year. It is thought that he and Jane had two sons, John and Joseph.
  • Samuel Edward Hall, 14530, died 18/09/1918, age 23. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 11th Bn. Buried at Doiran Military Cemetery, Greece. Son of Joseph and Jane Hall, of 2 Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside.
    Samuel was born in Llanrwst, one of five siblings. His family moved to Penrhynside in 1911, having previously lived at Quarry Cottages, Penrhyn Bay. His stone-mason father worked at the Little Orme quarry. Samuel’s division arrived in Salonika (now Thessaloniki) in November 1915. After years of fighting, the enemy surrendered that front on 30 September. Samuel died during the second battle of Doiran less than a fortnight before the surrender.
  • Robert Harris, 20454 died 01/09/1917. Royal Welsh Fusiliers "B" Coy. 14th Bn. Commemorated at Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium. Son of Robert George and Annie Harris of 10 Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside.
    Robert was the eldest of 14 children in the family. Five of the brothers went to war and all but Robert survived, although injuries from a gas attack in France are likely to have hastened the death of one brother, Elias, in 1931. Robert may have been one of the casualties when battalion headquarters were struck by enemy shells.
  • John Mark Jones, 21375, died 18/03/1916, age 33. Royal Welsh Fusiliers "A" Coy. 14th Bn. Buried at Le Touret Military Cemetery, Richebourg-L'avoue, France. Son of Thomas and Ann Jones, of 2 Penyffordd Terrace, Penrhynside.
    Next door neighbour of Robert John Williams – see below.
  • George Thomas Langford, Corporal, 18543, died 22/04/1918, age 20. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 16th Bn. Buried at Bouzincourt Ridge Cemetery, France. Son of William Langford and his wife Susan (née Berryman) of Glamorgan.
    While his battalion was stationed in Llandudno, George met Hannah Elizabeth Owen, whom he later married. She was brought up at Bryn Ifan, Bryn y Bia Road, Penrhynside. They had a daughter, Laura Gwendoline. He died trying to secure some high ground after the German army’s Somme spring offensive.
  • Edward Samuel Lloyd, Able Seaman, J/39238, died 03/05/1918, age 19. Royal Navy. Commemorated at Hollybrook Memorial, Southampton. Son of Llewelyn and Ellen Williams, who lived at Llysvaen View, Penrhynside, before Llewelyn died in 1905. Ellen took her children to live in Dwygyfylchi but later married Hugh Hughes of Pant Uchaf, Pant y Wennol.
    Edward joined the navy aged 16 and served on HMS Bombala when it was attacked by two German U-boats off Africa. This was an armed decoy ship, also known as Willow Branch, dressed to look like a merchant ship to lure submarines into battle. On this occasion it took two submarines more than two hours to cause enough of a fire on the ship that the crew had to take to the lifeboats. Only two of the crew survived, after their lifeboat made land at the Senegal River estuary. Edward was buried on a beach nearby.
  • William Glyndwr Owen, 45003, died 26/10/1917. Northumberland Fusiliers 1st/5th Bn. Buried at Cement House Cemetery, Belgium. Son of Owen Hugh Owen and Elizabeth Jane Owen of Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside.
    William was born in Rhondda, South Wales, on 7/6/1896. He and his father may have worked in the Little Orme quarry before enlisting. He died as his battalion tried advanced on Houthulst Forest under heavy fire, when 12 officers and 439 men of other rank were killed or injured. Almost a year passed before his family was told he was presumed dead. Later his body was found and buried in Cement House Cemetery.
  • John Owen, 75428, died 08/01/1918, age 21. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 19th Bn. Buried at Mory Abbey Military Cemetery, France. Son of John and Frances Owen of Tan-Y-Wal, Penrhynside.
    His battalion was in the Bullecourt sector of the western front when he was killed. A fierce attack on this sector was repulsed on that day.
  • Emrys Ceredig Phillips, died 19/06/1917, age 20. The Welsh Regiment, 19th Bn. Buried at Bard Cottage Cemetery, Belgium. Son of Rev William Phillips, minister at Ebenzer Congregational Chapel, Penrhynside. The chapel closed in 1980 and is now the village community centre.
    During heavy fighting in advance of the third battle of Ypres (known as Passchendaele), Emrys was stationed on a canal bank at the Ypres Salient.
  • William Roberts, 16069, died 01/08/1917. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 13th Bn. Commemorated at the Menin Gate memorial, Ypres, Belgium. Son of Joseph and Hannah Roberts of Tyddyn Bluan, later Howard House, Penrhynside.
    He died on the second day of the third battle of Ypres (known as Passchendaele). Heavy rain had turned the ground into mud, which made the soldiers’ offensive even more difficult to complete with success.
  • Thomas Edward Roberts, 26349, died 04/08/1917. Welsh Regiment 17th Bn. Buried at Gouzeaucourt New British Cemetery, France. Son of William and Elizabeth Catherine Roberts of Craigle, Hen Dwr Lane, Penrhynside.
    His battalion was in the Cambrai area when he died.
  • Llewelyn Roberts, 21378, died 06/10/1918, age 25. Royal Welsh Fusiliers, "D" Coy. 14th Bn. Buried at Prospect Hill cemetery, Gouy, France. Son of Mr. and Mrs. W Roberts, of Llandudno; husband of Dorothy Roberts of Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside.
    Llewelyn fought through three years of trench warfare but died just a month before the armistice while maintaining pressure on the German army after the Allies’ capture of the strategically important Mametz Wood.
  • George Frederick Sanford, 10135, died 30/10/1914*, age 24. Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1st Bn. Buried at Sanctuary Wood Cemetery, Ypres. Son of James and Kate Sanford, of 13, Mount Pleasant, Penrhynside.
    He was killed during the first battle of Ypres, and was one of a total of over 800 officers and men of the battalion who were killed or taken prisoner from 19 to 30 October.
  • James Whittle, 26209, died 08/08/1917, age 20. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 17th Bn. Buried at Wimereux Communal Cemetery, France. Son of James and Mary Whittle, of Tan-y-Fron, Penrhynside.
    His battalion was involved with the third battle of Ypres (Passchendaele), which started on 31/7/1917. By the following day the battalion had lost 16 officers and 324 men of other rank. It is likely that James was wounded and moved to a military hospital near Wimereux, but died there of his injuries.
  • Robert John Williams, 21010, died 23/02/1916, age 26. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 14th Bn. Buried at Windy Corner, Cuinchy, France. Son of Henry and Elizabeth Williams, of 3 Penyffordd Terrace, Penrhynside.
    He was shot accidentally by a member of another unit, and died of his wounds.soldier icon
  • John Richard Williams, 310051, died 02/05/1918, age 23. Royal Garrison Artillery 1st/1st (Welsh) Heavy Bty. Buried at Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Belgium. Son of Samuel and Catherine Williams of Tŷ Hen, a smallholding on Pen y Garreg Lane, Little Orme.
    John and his father probably worked at the Little Orme quarry. He became a gunner and died while his unit provided artillery support on the Western Front.

*Official records give 30/10/1914 as GF Sanford’s date of death, but one gives 29/10/1914