HERALD WAR REPORT
PRIVATE ALEXANDER EMBLETON KILLED IN ACTION
The Rev. Joseph Miller, of the Congregational Church, Morpeth on Sunday morning last paid the following tribute to the above named late member of the church and Sunday School teacher.
Dear Friends.— It is my painful duty once again to refer to the awful toll of life demanded by the war, and particularly to a further loss sustained by our church. Private Alexander Embleton was killed in action on 28th March.
He joined up at the beginning of June, 1917, and was for a considerable time stationed at West Boldon. In a letter to me whilst he was still there he described the conditions under which he had to live and work, but there was not one word of complaint about anything.
His food was good, his duties were quite acceptable, his fellow soldiers, especially his two companions, were nice young men, and they got on very well together. There was a library in the camp, which was a useful institution, and they had a religious service in the canteen every Sunday morning, which afforded him much pleasure and profit.
I mention these things because they serve better than anything to show what kind of man Alexander Embleton was, namely, one of most unassuming, amiable, gentle, appreciative, humble and truly Christian men I have ever met.
When he came to Morpeth one of the first things he did was to seek a church in order that he might go there regularly to worship. He also became a teacher in our Sunday School, and from conversations I had with him he experienced much joy in this capacity, as he faithfully did his duty, and I learnt from other sources his boys were exceedingly fond of him.
Mr Embleton was a member of our church, too, and we are the poorer today because he is no longer with us, but those who knew him are richer for their fellowship with him.
His mother and relatives — particularly his mother, to whom he was devoted — will naturally feel the loss most, and your sympathy, as well as mine, will be extended towards them in their great sorrow.
We have already sent a message of condolence through our secretary, but I shall forward this brief testimony to a noble character and Christian soldier to them, and assure them that we share their grief and pray that God in His mercy may sustain them.
The members of Morpeth Company continue to put in a good deal of useful work. The instruction given has been of a varied and interesting character. There have been lectures in physical training and other subjects, special instruction in bayonet fighting, squad, and company drill.
The latest addition to the Company’s equipment is a Hotchkiss gun. Corporal Heddon, who has recently had a special course of training, is in charge. The gun team consists of ten men.
At Tuesday night’s parade the attendance was far from satisfactory. Lieut. W. Duncan intimated that the Adjutant of the battalion had informed him that unless there was decided improvement in the attendance of some members — and this applies to members of other companies as well — drastic steps under the Military Act would be taken to see that men carried out their obligations.
As it is only by regular attendance at drill that real progress can be made, it is up to every man in the Force to make every endeavour to put in at any rate their requisite number of drills as efficients or recruits each month.
There is a movement on foot in connection with the 5th Battalion to hold a standing musketry camp for at least a month. It was found last year that a large proportion of the time at the annual camp was taken up by musketry, with the result that little time was left for other forms of training. By having the musketry camp as suggested, when both efficients and recruits could attend and fire their tests, it would allow the whole week at the annual camp to be devoted to collective company and battalion training.
Such a scheme if carried out would provide excellent facilities to the whole battalion to avail themselves of the opportunity of going through their musketry course. Men attending for a complete 24 hours will be provided with accommodation and rations.
The proposal is to hold the camp at Morpeth from about the 15th June until the end of that month, and at Berwick from the beginning of July to the middle of the month.
The annual camp is to be held in August Bank Holiday week and the present arrangements are that it should be held at Rothbury.
The Longbenton Detachment has now been in existence for two years, and is making an effort to increase its numbers. In that time 87 men have been enrolled, but after deducting resignations the muster roll is now only 45. There is good material for at least another hundred men in the district to become members of this detachment, and a platoon at Burradon and another at West Moor is the ideal that the commander of the detachment has in mind as a reasonable number to prove that this area is doing at least as much as the rest of the county in the matter of recruiting for the Volunteer Force.
A smoking concert recently held revealed good talent amongst the members, and the Commanding Officer and the Adjutant both contributed enjoyable items to the programme.
Prizes won in the miniature rifle competition were presented to Sergt. Millington (cigarette case), Private Tomlinson (letter case), and Private Patterson (silver mounted pipe in case), and the proceedings throughout were marked by the spirit of camaraderie that exists throughout all ranks of this detachment.
WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN!
What has been aptly described as the triumph of the screen is the masterpiece produced by the Vitagraph Coy under the title of “Womanhood.”
The picture, over which a fabulous sum has been spent to give to it that realism so necessary, will represent in absolute true to life style what would probably have come to our own beloved land had it not been that the waters and our brave lads riding thereon, formed the impenetrable barrier.
Morpeth’s Playhouse will therefore give patrons a peep of the organised treatment meted out to those who had the misfortune to fall into the enemy’s hands.
In seven reels, the picture appears during the last half of next week, and it would be well for seats to be booked.
ROLL OF HONOUR
Mrs Young, Hepscott, has received a card from her husband, Private John Young, Cambridgeshire Regiment, stating he was a prisoner.
News has been received that William Clark, son of George and Ellen Clark, of Hillgate, Morpeth, is a prisoner of war.
Official news has been received by Mrs H. Fairbairn, 99 Newgate Street, Morpeth, that her son, Private William Fairbairn, Northumberland Fusiliers, has been missing since the 2nd April.
Mr Wm. Swann, of West Sleekburn Farm, has received official intimation that his son, Private W. Swann, N.F., late Hussars, died on April 19th at No. 3 Canadian General Hospital, Boulogne, from wounds received in action.
Pte. E Wood, N.F., late of Dinnington Colliery, has been killed in action.
News has been received by Mrs J. Summers, that her son, Private William Summers, of East Yorks Regiment, has been wounded in the right foot and is in hospital at Liverpool.
Mrs E. Charlton, Bothal Park Cottage, Morpeth, has received word that her youngest son, Pte. Walter M. Charlton, Middlesex Regt., is in hospital at Estaples, suffering from trench fever.
Mr and Mrs Thos. Meech, 3 East View Terrace, Dudley, have received word that their son-in-law, Pte. C.M. Hall, D.L.I., has been posted as missing since the 21st March, 1918.
Mr and Mrs W.H. Snowdon, Station Cottages, Seghill, have received official news that their son, Pte. Harry Snowdon has been posted as missing since March 21st, 1918. He was employed before enlistment as a Clerk with the N.E.R. company.
Mrs Turnbull, of Sinkers Row, Dudley Colliery, has received official news that her husband, Pte. Harry Turnbull, N.F., has been posted as missing since the 28th March. Prior to enlistment he was manager of the Cramlington Village Workmen’s Social Club.
Mrs Grey, Blakewell Road, West End, Tweedmouth, has received official news that her husband Corporal William Grey, has been killed in action on the 28th March. The deceased soldier’s parents live at 5 Liddel Terrace, Widdrington. He has seen more than three years service in France. He was a 1st glass gunner of the Lewis Gun section. The deceased soldier’s widow received a letter of sympathy from his Commanding Officer. Corporal Grey was home last year to Tweedmouth on sick leave after suffering from septic poisoning. He was in the Northumberland Fusiliers. He was twenty-six years of age. He enlisted at the beginning of the war.
Mrs Dunn, Ashington, late of Kennington, received news that her son, Sergt. Thomas W. Dunn, Highland Light Infantry, has been killed in action, March 25th, 1918. At the very beginning of the war he responded to his country’s call, enlisting on Sept. 1st, 1914, into the Dragoon Guards.
Mr and Mrs Scougal, 43 Doctor Terrace, Bedlington, have received information that their only son, Gunner Thomas Scougal, R.G.A., has been killed in action on March 21st. He joined H.M. Forces in October, 1915, and was severely gassed in July last year. He went out to France again in October. He was 23 years of age.
Mrs Stanners, Stobhill Gate, Morpeth, has just received word that her son, Private Robert H. Stanners, D.L.I. has lost his left leg in the recent fighting.
News has been received by Mrs C. Riley, of Bell’s Yard, Morpeth, that her third son, Private P. Riley, M.M., T.S., N.F., is a prisoner of war. He was previously employed by the Ashington Coal Company. He is a grandson of the late Mr James Gray, New Hartley.
Official information has been received by Mrs D. Fitzsimmons, Post Office Buildings, Bedlington Station, that Private Daniel Fitzsimmons, N.F., has been missing since 23rd march.
Mrs Scott, of 3 Cleveland Terrace, Darlington, has received official information that her son, Morris H. Scott, Royal Scots, has been missing since March 22nd, 1918. Previous to enlisting he was employed on the clerical staff of the Newbiggin Coal Company, and was a member of the Eastcliffe Golf Club, Newbiggin.
Mrs Lynch, of 12 Low Cross Row, Seaton Burn, has been notified that her son, Private Isaac Harem, N.F., has been gassed and is in hospital.
ROLL OF HONOUR
DIXON.— Died in France on April 14th, from wounds received in action on that date. Pte. William Dixon, N.F., aged 24 years, son of James Dixon, of Forest Hall, late of Cramlington Village.— Deeply mourned.
GREY.— Killed in action March 25th, 1918, aged 26 years, Pte William Grey (11451), 5th N.F., dearly beloved and youngest son of George and Annie Grey, of 5 Liddell Terrace, Ferney Beds Colliery.— Deeply mourned by his father and mother, sisters and brother and sister-in-law, and all who knew him.— There is a link which death cannot sever, Sweet remembrance lasts forever.
McCREADY.— Died from wounds received in action, aged 21 years, Richard William, beloved son of James and Hannah McCready, 90 Rosalind Street, Hirst. Interment at Seaton Hirst, Saturday, at 3pm. All friends kindly invited.
ROSS.— Killed in action 13th April, Sergeant Robert Ross, West Ridings, 4th son of Mr and Mrs Alexander Ross, 6 Hedgehope Terrace, Chevington Drift, aged 22 years.
SPROAT.— Killed in action in France, May 6th, 1917, aged 33 years, Private Thornton John Sproat, Australians, eldest son of Mr and Mrs John Sproat, late of Abbey Mills, Morpeth.
ROUTLEDGE.— Died of wounds received in action in France on April 12th, 1918, Pte. Thomas Routledge, aged 25 years, dearly beloved son of Robert and Frances Routledge, 122 Rosalind Street, Ashington. Ever remembered by his father, mother, brothers, sisters, his brother John (serving in India), his friends and neighbours, and all who knew him.
MORPETH V.A.D. HOSPITAL
The Commandant wishes to thank all those who have been kind enough to send the following gifts to the hospital:— Miss Hopper, De Merley Road, fresh eggs; Mr Pringle, Tritlington, fresh eggs; the employees of Messrs. J.T. Procter and Co., fresh eggs; Mrs J.S. Mackay, brown loaf; Miss Hopper, cigarettes; Mrs Joicey, 12 mufflers, 8 pairs socks, and flowers; Mrs Crawford, Stanton Fence, 72 fresh eggs.
MORPETH RURAL DISTRICT COUNCIL
The annual meeting of the Morpeth Rural District Council was held on Wednesday.
The Surveyor (Mr Osborne Blythe) stated that the repairs under contract at Chevington Hospital were completed. He had inspected the work, which was quite satisfactory.
At Ulgham Grange Old Colliery Cottages the privies and ashpits were in a very insanitary condition owing to the lack of attention in cleaning. They had been done heretofore by local farmers gratis, but owing to labour shortage such could not be done now.
The tenants appeared to think, stated the surveyor, that it was the duty of the Council to see that the ashpits and privies were cleansed. However, the cottages were not in a scavenging area, and he thought it was the tenants’ duty to keep them in a sanitary condition.
The surveyor was instructed to write to the tenants and inform them that it was incumbent upon them to clean the ashpits, and also notice that if it was not done measure would be taken.