Tributes to town resident who died in the Great War

Morpeth Clock Tower Bellringers and the town's high school honoured a man exactly 100 years after he died in the First World War.

Monday, 6th March 2017, 5:01 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 9:54 am
The eight bellringers who rang a half-muffled quarter peal in memory of Sgt Sidney Arthur Wright. Picture courtesy of Christopher Teasdale.

Sidney Arthur Wright was born in 1882 in Farnborough, Hampshire. He learned to ring under his father’s tuition at Westerham, Kent. He later moved to London to study at St Mark’s College, Chelsea.

In 1909, he married Maud Benson in Carlisle and they went on to have four children together. In 1912, they moved to Morpeth when he took up a position as the music teacher at the King Edward VI Grammar School.

During his short time in Morpeth, he was a member of the Clock Tower band and was also organist and choir master at St George’s Presbyterian (now URC) Church.

A resident of 17 Olympia Hill, he enlisted in the 2nd Battalion Scots Guards at Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1914. Sgt Wright died on March 1, 1917, aged 34, due to complications from bronchitis at a casualty clearing station near Méaulte – a commune in the Somme department, northern France.

On the morning of March 1 last week, a minute’s silence was observed at King Edward VI School in his memory.

In the evening, the Clock Tower Bellringers rang a half-muffled quarter peal in honour of Sgt Wright as part of Ringing to Remember, the Durham and Newcastle Diocesan Association (of bellringers) First World War Centenary Commemoration.

His remains are interred in plot III C 17 in Grove Town Cemetery, Méaulte, Somme, France.

He is commemorated on Morpeth Cenotaph, the King Edward VI School Memorial and St George’s Presbyterian Church Roll of Honour.