HERALD WAR REPORT: Advert from the Morpeth Herald, July 5, 1918.
HERALD WAR REPORT: Advert from the Morpeth Herald, July 5, 1918.

In this feature to commemorate the First World War, we will bring you the news as it happened in 1918, as reported by the Morpeth Herald. All material is published with kind permission of the Mackay family. We thank them for their support and generosity in allowing us access to their archive.

Will be at the Town Hall, Morpeth, every Wednesday, commencing July 3rd, from 9 to 12 o’clock, and would be grateful if people would bring fresh vegetables to send to the Sailors.


Under the existing circumstances the Camp Meeting at Ulgham Grange Villa will not be held this year.


Mr and Mrs J. Purvis, Riverside, Morpeth, have received news that their youngest son, Private Selvey Purvis, N.F., has been reported missing since May 27th, 1918.

Mrs Sims, 13 Chapel Place, Seaton Burn, has received official news that her husband, Corporal D, Sims, N.F., is notified as wounded and missing since 14th April.


RIDDELL.– Killed in action June 15th, 1918, Sergt. Norman G. Riddell, M.M., in his 32nd year, beloved husband of Harriet Riddell, and dear son of Mary and the late William Riddell, of High Church, Morpeth; and step-son of James Waterston, 7, Alexandra Road, Morpeth.–Deeply mourned.

RUTHERFORD.–Killed in action on June 15th, 1918, in his 21st year, William, dearly beloved son of William and Jane Ann Rutherford, The Crescent, Ewesley, Morpeth.–Deeply mourned by his sorrowing father and mother, brothers and sisters, Jack (in France), his sorrowing friends, and all who knew him.

ROBINSON.–Killed in action, July 5th, 1916, Private David Robinson, 24 years of age, beloved husband of Mary Robinson, Minto House, Newbiggin.–Deeply mourned by his sorrowing wife.

HARKINS.–Killed in action, June 16th, 1918, in Italy, Corporal J. James Harkins, M.M., 11th N.F., beloved husband of Margaret Jane Harkins (nee Dunn), and son of Mr and Mrs J. Wm. Hogg, Chevington Drift, Acklington.–Loved in life and shall be respected in death by his loving wife and baby son, father and mother-in-law, sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law (Harry in France, Andrew serving), also by his mother, father, sisters, and brothers, uncles and aunt, and all who knew him.


Saturday, July 13th, will be “Barnardo Day” in connection with the Morpeth Habitation of the Young Helpers’ League. Never have the demands of the Homes been more real and earnest than they were today, and these for obvious reasons. Since war broke out Dr. Barnardo’s Homes have admitted 5,884 boys and girls, a great record at an era when Britain’s greatest need is the child, and when every baby’s life is doubly precious. It has been said that the wealth of the nation is in its offspring, and regarding the position of our country to-day, when the war carries away in a mighty torrent thousands of its best and noblest manhood. Collections of necessity have to be organised, and it is hoped that the one arranged in Morpeth for Saturday, July 13th, will prove an unqualified success. Donations or subscriptions may be sent and will be acknowledged by the local hon. secretary, Mrs Purdy, The Ferns, Morpeth.


Thanks to the splendid arrangements which had been made by the Mayoress (Mrs James Elliott), Queen Alexandra Rose Day, which was held at Morpeth last Saturday, was a great success. There bring many visitors to the town. The ladies, who assisted the Mayoress in her good work, were actively engaged all day in disposing of the artificial roses. The collections amounted to £51, subscriptions from various ladies £9 10s, making a grand total of £60 10s. The proceeds were devoted to the headquarters at London, Morpeth V.A.D., Cottage Hospital, and Dispensary.

The following kindly acted as collectors:–Mrs Atkinson, Miss Angus, Miss K. Hopper, Miss Drysdale, Mrs Robson, Miss Naisby, Mrs James, Mrs Harper, Mrs Hoey, Mrs J. Temple, Mrs Wood, Mrs Armstrong, Mrs Turner sen., Mrs Turner jun., Mrs Jobling, Mr Gordon Jobling, Mrs Wyatt, Mrs Baylis, Mrs T. Hooper, Mrs G. W. Purdy, Mrs Frank, Miss Bruce, Miss Ayre, Miss Harbottle, Miss Wood, Miss Cairns, Miss Trueman, Miss Seabrook, Miss Hughes, Miss Brown, Misses Lowrison (2), Miss Eva Brittain, Miss Allan, Miss Legge, Miss Donelly, Miss Temple, Miss Daglish, Miss Elliott, Misses Harrison (2), Misses Simpson. From the V.A.D.: Lance-Corporal Barry, Gnr. Cooper, Private McClay, Corporal Pashby.



The Commandant wished specially to thank Mr Andrew Stranghan of the Black Bull, who has most generously done the carting of the laundry and other things for the hospital from March 1st to July 1st, free of charge, as a gift to the hospital.

She wishes also to acknowledge the following gift with many thanks:– Cabbages, Miss Davidson; spring onions, Mrs Stevenson; flowers, vegetables, and books, Mrs Joicey; books and cakes, Mrs Oliver, Bowmer Bank; cakes, Mrs McDowell; brown loaf, Mrs J. S. Mackay; vegetables, Mrs J. J. Gillespie; eggs and butter, Mrs Rayne; 36 eggs, Mr Pringle, Tritlington.


The Commandant gratefully acknowledges the following gifts:–Miss Williams, butter; Mrs J. Robson, teacakes; Miss Rowntree, rissoles; Mrs Davidson, cakes and marmalade; Mrs Crisp, lettuce; Miss Atkinson, butter and gooseberries; Mrs J Robson, jam tart; Mrs T. B. Robson, gooseberries.


All wise gardeners are very busy with the hoe these hot days. It is the only way to keep the allotments growing. The long spell of sunshine has dried up the earth, and in ground which has not been well hoed long cracks are spreading across the surface, letting the precious moisture below rise to the surface and evaporate. This is bad gardening and results in poor crops. We cannot afford to lose any plant or vegetable which will help the food supply this year, and everyone who neglects this garden is neglecting his duty, the hoeing of a vegetable plot seems a small thing in these days of big happenings, but it may make all the difference in the fate of the war. If you can’t shoulder a rifle, carry on with the hoe.

Mr George Reid, Belgian Consul, Newcastle, has pleasure in announcing that the King of the Belgians has conferred a decoration of the “Medaille de la Reine Elisabeth” upon Lady Margaret Percy, Alnwick Castle, in recognition of valuable help and assistance given to Belgians during the war.

Primitive Methodist Church (Howard Terrace), Morpeth.

SUNDAY JULY 7th, 1918



Morning 10.30 a.m.; Evening at 6.


Sir,–Some people are objecting to the supplies of frozen meat. It can only be because they do not understand the position. To kill lean home stock now, when it can be cheaply fattened on pasture, would be the worst kind of waste. If frozen meat is used now there should be a good supply of home killed meat in the winter.

The use of frozen meat is a part of the general war conditions and should be accepted as cheerfully and willingly as any other. Much of the objection to its use would disappear if it was properly cooled, and I append instructions which I hope you will publish in view of the importance of this question.–Yours, etc.

H. BARNES, Major (V.F.),

Assistant Commissioner for E. and P.

“Frozen meat must be thawed. The simplest method is to sprinkle a little salt over it and leave it in the kitchen cupboard for the night. If it should be necessary to cook the meat as soon as it arrives from the butcher, it can be thawed, by putting into tepid (never hot) water and allowed to stand from half an hour to an hour, according to the size of the joint. In cooking frozen meat the usual methods of procedure are reversed. If roasted it should be put into a cool oven, and the heat should be gradually increased; if boiled it should be put into cold water and brought gradually to the boil. This water should always be used for stock, because by this method of boiling more good is extracted from the meat than by the usual method. But the best way to cook frozen meat is to steam it unless it is in large joints. A scrag end of mutton is delicious if it is cooked in a stone jar placed in a pan of water. The water in the pan should come about halfway up the jar, but there should be no water inside the jar, as the ice in the meat will supply all that is needed. Slow cooking is essential whichever method is used, and as the saving of fuel is important it is a good plan to cut up the meat into small portions before steaming it, so that it will cool more quickly.


The annual statement of account of the Northumberland Football Association for the year ended April 30th shows an increase for the past season of £178 19s 1d, which included a balance carried forward of £156 12s 9d. The expenditure was £18 9s 11d, leaving a balance of £160 9s 2d. The charity account showed an income of £151 2s 5d, including a balance of £3 15s. Donations amount to £159 had been paid, the chief of these being £52 10s each to the Newcastle War Relief Fund, and £22 to the F.A. National War Relief Fund, leaving a balance of £2 2s 5d. Assets amounted to £167 11s 7d, with liabilities nil. The secretary, in an accompanying circular, refers to the loss sustained by the death of the president, Mr G. T.Milne, of the appointment of Mr Jonathan Ridley as his successor, and the election of Messrs J. Gibson (Ashington) and Sep. Browell (North Shields) to the council. The game had been kept going by means of the Newcastle District United League, the Ashington Competition, and innumerable charity matches.



The Hon. and Rev. W. C. Ellis presided at the monthly meeting of the Morpeth Rural Council on Wednesday.

The medical officer (Dr Philip) reported that in the eastern district there were nine deaths and 24 births, and in the western district two deaths and three births, equal to an annual rate of 8.8 and 21.4 per thousand. The causes of death were: Three from senile decay, two from heart disease, and one each from epilepsy, debility from birth, diphtheria, arterio sclerosis. There were only five notifications, three being of scarlet fever (in one house) at Stobhill, one of measles at Ellington Colliery, and one of ophthalmia neonatorum at Chevington.

Chairman: Have you many cases of Spanish influenza?

Medical Officer: Yes. I never had so many cases. I am sorry the newspapers have given so much space to it, because it only frightens the people.

Mr Young: Any schools in the rural district closed?–Doctor: No.

The surveyor (Mr Osborne Blythe) reported that during the past month eight cases for of infectious disease had been notified and eight had been disinfected.

He had made an inspection of the ashpit cleansing at Pegswood, Widdrington, and West Chevington, and found no causes for complaint.

He had completed improvement of part of the village sewer at Ellington.

In reference to the difficulties in connection with the ashpit cleaning of private property at Broomhill the surveyor reported that he had gone to considerable trouble in the matter, and had not been able to find a solution.

After the clerk had explained the present position, Mr Dormand moved that the question be adjourned for a month in order to await the reply of the Coal Company, and in the meantime the surveyor to report as to the state of the ashpits.

Mr Colvin seconded.

Mr C. E. Young: Better leave it to the sanitary inspector and the medical officer.

Mr Colvin: And the surveyor to give a report as to the sanitary state of the area.

Medical Officer: We might go round the place and warn the people and give a report to the next meeting.

Chairman: And in the meantime they must not leave the nuisance unabated.

Mr G. Young: It has been caused by the people refusing to pay the 6d or 1/- to have their ashpits cleaned out.

It was finally agreed to adjourn the matter for a month the medical officer and surveyor to inspect the place and warn the people to abate the nuisance and report.

The surveyor reported that he had received a letter about overcrowding at Widdrington. He had no doubt as to the accuracy of what was stated. Recently he had had some correspondence with the Widdrington Coal Company about another case of overcrowding, but had not got any satisfaction.

A letter was read from the County Medical Officer stating that there was a bad case of overcrowding at Stamp’s Stead, Widdrington, there being ten persons in two rooms. The drainage of the premises had been in a most unsatisfactory condition, and occasionally a pool of dirty water collected near the house.

Medical Officer: The Clerk might report to the Coal Company and give them a chance to get a larger house.

Mr Annett: There are plenty empty houses.

Mr Blythe (surveyor): I don’t think the clerk will succeed, because you get nothing but diplomatic letters from them. I went to the manager on one occasion, and I received a letter stating “The case you refer to is under consideration, and will deal with it shortly.”

Clerk: We will have to take some action, because we cannot allow it to go on.

Medical Officer: A letter from the Board may be very effective by threatening closure if overcrowding is now abated.

|The doctor’s suggestion was adopted.

The surveyor (Mr H. Walker) reported that the western district kept free from infectious disease. No notifications had been received during the month. He had samples of water taken at Shelley Farm after complaints of pollution which would be sent for analysis. An application had been received from Mr Hall, Low Angerton, for registration of cow byre. There was a cubic space of 600 feet per cow. He recommended that the application be granted.–This was agreed to.

Mr Annett asked if anything had been done with regard to the water supply at Middle Steads.

Clerk: We got a reply that the matter would receive attention.

Mr Annett: The water is sometimes off three days at a time. I would suggest a storage tank be put in by the landlord or the Coal Company.

Clerk: They were asked to put in a storage tank, but nothing was done.

Mr Annett: When there is water at one place there is none at the other.

The clerk was instructed to write again.