November 1915‘Our’ Day fundraising
‘Our’ Day was a fundraising campaign organised by the Red Cross. Small flags were sold for a penny and silk ones were sold for sixpence.
The first Our Day was held on 21st October, and it was reported in The Surrey Advertiser for Saturday 6th November - ‘notwithstanding the inclement weather on Tuesday week the ladies of the ‘Our Day’ movement –Mrs Clark Kennedy, Mrs Russell, Mrs Saunders and Mrs Elsie Cumber bravely faced the elements with a temporary shelter at the Mount for the whole day. The result of £6.6s.10d was especially gratifying in that the sum was collected from passersby only.’
The paper also reported that the total for the Cranleigh Division was £66.12s.6d.
Memorial service for the fallen in the parish church.
The Surrey Advertiser reported that ‘A memorial service was held in the parish church on Monday for all those of the parish who have fallen since the outbreak of the war. There was a large congregation and the rector (Rev. A.J. Hamlyn) conducted the service. Special psalms and hymns were sung and before the Intercession Prayers were said, the rector read the following list of officers and men who have been killed – Captain E.H. Sartorius, Captain F. Heath, Sergt. E.E.Whitty, Sergt. S. Randall, Oliver Tidy (HMS Formidable) Ptes. F Alywin, Chas. Barnett, Timothy Benjamin Woodley, G. Eldridge and A.W. Victor Lawrence. At the close of the service the ‘Dead March’ was played and a muffled peal rung on the church bells.”
(note – the list does not include the names of J Parsons or W.Haffenden, both killed at the Battle of Loos in September 1915)
The late Corporal Whitty
The Surrey Advertiser for Saturday 20th November 1915 gave more news about the death of Corporal Whitty who had been killed in a mivne expolsion on 23rd October. “Relatives have received a letter from Second Lieutenant Morse, 7th Buffs attached to Royal Engineers in which he states that corporal Whitty ‘was one on whomI put absolute trust. He always did his best to help me. The very day before his death I had him up before me specially to congratulate him on a bit of work he had done a few days previously. When all but an officer had left a certain bit of dangerous work, he alone remained to help the officer and stayed with him until the danger was over. Lieutenant Heath sent his name to the Captain for recommendation. This however falls through owing to his unfortunate decease.”
The 23rd Middlesex Regiment camp breaks up
The 23rd Middlesex (Footballers) Regiment who had been camped at Holmbury for training were preparing to move on. Miss Topham had been active in organising entertainments for the troops and her kindness was recognised in a letter from Major Hicks. The Surrey Advertiser reported “Miss Topham, who has been the prime mover in organising a series of weekly concerts for soldiers in the church hall has received a letter from Major Hicks of the 23rd Middlesex stating that the camp was likely to be shortly breaking up, he wished to express his most sincere thanks for all her kind help and interest in amusing the men. The kindness of herself and friends has been very much appreciated.”
Four Sons Serving
The paper regularly carried reports of serving men and their proud families. On 27th November it was the turn of the Stemp family of Ewhurst Green – “The four sons of Mr and Mrs Stemp of Ewhurst Green are serving their King and country. They are Pte P. Stemp, 9thNorfolk Regiment B.E.F., France; pioneer J Stemp, 11th Hants Regiment, Pirbright; Gunner W. Stemp 183rd Brigade R.F.A., Leipzig Barracks Farnham; and G. Stemp, RN Barracks Portsmouth.
(Gunner W Stemp was Walter Stemp, remembered by many Ewhurst Residents for his memories published in the Parish Magazine in the 1980s)