Ceremony Plans

Charles Nesfield Andrewes
Frederick Balchin
Henry Bennett
Charles Bradford
William Burgess
Arthur Chessall
James Compton
Aldwyn Custance
Charles Deacon
Frank Eames
George Fuggles
Isaac Gratwicke
Peter Gratwicke
Alfred Hide
Charles Howell
John Huntley
Arthur Kennard
Henry Kensett
Sidney Kensett
Bernard Laker
Frederick Laker
Frederick Lewry
Philip Mitchell
Thomas Owen
William Parsons
Charles Rapley
Charles Roberts
Arthur Rush
William Sayers
Alec Shoubridge
Thomas Shoubridge
Frank Simmons
James Standing
Albert Welcome
Frederick Whitner
James Willis

Frederick Boniface
Charles Bourne
Alexander Buller
John Corbet-Ward
Richard Corbet-Ward
Alfred Godward
Norman Gratwicke
Vivian Hughes
Harry Jones
Charles Knight
Frank Knight
John Lawson
Lawrence Moore
James Steadman
Herbert Turk
Charles Wieland
Richard Wykes

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Southwater War Memorial


Name Harry JONES
Regiment P/JX Boy 1st Class Royal Navy. HMS Royal Oak
Died 14th October 1939 Horsham’s first war casualty
Age 16
Cemetery Portsmouth Naval Memorial Panel 24 Column 2
Family Son of Harry and Florence Elizabeth Jones of Lorna Doone, Worthing Road, Southwater.
Born 23rd October 1922 in Queen Street, Horsham.
Went first to school in Southwater and later Denne Road Infants School, St John’s School and then Victory Road School, where he became Chief Monitor and School Captain. In 1936 he won the high jump at the Sussex County School Championships, clearing 4ft 9˝inches. He sent away for papers to join the Navy when he was just 11 years old and on 8th February 1938 he joined HMS Vincent at Gosport for training, being promoted to Leading Boy after only two months. Later he became PO Boy and then Instructor Boy, the highest rank he could obtain in the Barracks.

Portsmouth Naval Memorial

The family album in the custody of Southwater Local History Group
has many pictures including these :

The boys of HMS Vincent were confirmed all together in 1938

A later photo of Harry showing his new badges of rank

The Sinking of HMS Royal Oak

by Colin F. Jones

Lest We Forget the 833 officers and men, who lost their lives at Scapa Bay, on 14th October, 1939.

Like a sleeping giant the Royal Oak lay,
When the U-47 Submarine struck,
Three `eels' were fired two lost their way,
But with one there was some luck.

It hit Royal Oaks anchor cable,
Though it hardly left a mark,
Her shaded anchor lights still burned,
Faintly in the dark.

Flood number five from number one,
Open the outer door; she's ready!
`Los'; number five; fired from the stern,
The line of travel steady.

Close outer door! Tube is secured,
The fourth 'eel' is on its way.
But only a spiral of spurting sea,
Was visible through the spray.

"Reload the tubes," Priens order came,
"Prepare another `fan' of three,"
Down came the chain hoist from above,
As the Sub ploughed through the sea.

"Attack" the order turned the bows,
towards the sleeping ship,
Endrass bent over the optic aim,
Felt the Submarine turn and dip.

Doors reopened, the eels jumped out,
Three torpedoes from the bow,
Towards the Royal Oaks starboard side,
That were closing faster now.

The great ship shuddered, lifted up,
Then she gently settled back,
Lights flickered out, fans stopped running,
All power she did lack!

Across the decks the water flowed,
And a sheet of orange flame,
Exploded beneath the starboard deck,
Impossible to restrain.

Thick black smoke rose o'er the port,
Bulkheads shuddered and cracked,
Decks caved in and swirling flames,
Rose from the cruel impact

Through doors and hatches men were blown,
From hot ladders they were flung,
In hammocks brutally devoured by fire
Their flesh from the cabin walls clung.

Her death throes over the Royal Oak,
Plunged beneath the waves,
A tomb for more than eight hundred men,
For few that day were saved.

Silently the Submarine slipped,
Out to the ocean deep,
Leaving Scapa Flow and the Royal Oak,
To the nightmares of their sleep.

©Colin F. Jones 28 June 2002

See http://www.hmsroyaloak.co.uk/