Malvern College First World War Casualties

Statue of St George which is inscribed 'To Our Brothers', and oak panel memorial inside the chapel.

The following is a list with biographies of the 459 people who attended Malvern College and died due to the First World War. Altogether 2,833 are known to have served. There is also a corresponding page commemorating the 248 casualties in the Second World War.
There was not a month from August 1914 to November 1918 that an Old Malvernian did not become a casualty, with 6 killed on the first day of the Battle of Loos on the 25th September 1915 and 13 killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme on the 1st July 1916.
The vast majority of casualties occurred in France and Belgium with 31 names recorded on the Menin Gate at Ypres, and 23 at Thiepval. There were also 23 casualties in Turkey due to the Gallipoli Campaign, and 16 in Iraq, including 2 near Kut.
They were in a wide range of regiments including 26 in the Royal Field Artillery, 13 in the Royal Engineers, 12 in the Worcestershire Regt, 11 in the Canadian Inf, 11 in the East Kent Regt (The Buffs), and 5 in the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Air Force.
Most were officers with 133 Captains, 125 2nd Lieutenants, 114 Lieutenants, 26 Majors, and 15 Lieutenant Colonels.
22 received the MC, 5 the DSO and 1 the DCM, as well as 3 knighthoods (the CB, CMG, and MVO).

The information below is based primarily on the memorial books held at Malvern College which Ian Quickfall, and now Paul Godsland, the Malvernian Society archivists, have arranged to be digitised with the official memorial web site still in development.
Further information was also obtained from 'The Malvern College Register 1865-1924' edited by H.G.C Salmon, 'The Malvernian' school magazine, 'A History of Malvern College 1865 to 1965' by Ralph Blumenau, and 'Malvern College: A 150th Anniversary Portrait' by Roy Allen.
Information was also obtained from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website, the Unit War Diaries and Service Records held at the National Archives in Kew, and various online commemorative websites whose links have been provided.

The main battles have tried to be identified in which Old Malvernians died in. Many though were killed in the general attrition of Trench Warfare which is so vividly described in the book 'Nothing of Importance' by Bernard Adams.

Below is a map showing the locations of the 240 cemeteries where Old Malvernians are buried or commemorated in. The markers are coloured yellow for one casualty, orange for between 2 and 9, and red for 10 or more. The name of the cemetery and number of casualties can be seen by hovering over the marker, and the list of names seen by clicking on the marker. Their full biographies and pictures can be seen by clicking on 'Further Info'.

The records can be filtered and/or sorted by name, house, age, regiment, battle, date, place etc by clicking on the appropriate drop down box and then the 'Search' button below the map. The original memorial book entry can be seen by clicking on the person's picture.


Month died:
Date Died:
eg 01 July 1916 or 01 July     Died this day
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Captain Jacob Andrew Norman Hessler
House: Sch 1907 - 1907. Regiment: Durham Light Inf..
Died: 27 May 1918 aged 25 in France. Killed in action near Rheims.
Cemetery: Soissons Mem

Son of Jacob Kruse Muller Hessler and Killy Hessler, of "Wyndcliffe", Seaton Carew, West Hartlepool. His brother Jacob K.M. Hessler also died serving with the D.L.I.
5th Bn. Durham Light Infantry

'Since leaving School he had been engaged in his father's shipping and timber business. He was in the West Indies at the outbreak of war, but immediately returned to take his place in the Territorial battalion to which he had been commissioned a year previously, and he went with it to France in 1915.' (Malvernian, Jul 1918)

He sought to alleviate the financial hardships of widows, that entailed his men making weekly voluntary contributions to the Company Sick Club, which would provide widows with financial support until they received a government grant, which elicited the approval of the Secretary of State for War and the Chancellor of the Exchequer.They Served

On 16th May 1916 at Kemmel, he spained his ankle while jumping an obstacle on returning from the firing line. He returned to his unit on the 15th October 1917.

Service record: WO 374/33011

Flight Lieutenant Lawrence William McArthur
House: No 5 1904 - 1907. Regiment: 12 Sq. R. F. C..
Died: 27 May 1917 aged 27 in Belgium. Killed in action.
Cemetery: Harlebeke New Brit XV11 B 12

Son of William and Constance McArthur, of The Meadow, Chislehurst, Kent. b. 1890.
Middle Shell Lower V. XL Cricket.
In business; H.A.C.
Great War, mobilised 1914, Lieutenant; Captain 12th Sqdn. Royal Flying Corps and Honourable Artillery Company .
Killed in action May 27, 1917 ; M.C., Despatches (2).

'A member of the H.A.C. before the war, he left for the front with the first contingent in September 1914, and in June, 1915, was awarded the Military Cross for conspicuous bravery in an action, in which he was severely wounded. On recovery he entered the R.F.C. and since October, 1916, has been engaged at the front. He was mentioned in despatches twice and was gazetted Flight Commander last January. His School career was not marked by any striking performances owing perhaps to his leaving when only 17. His chief interest was in amateur carpentering—especially in the form of building models of boats, at which he showed special ability.' (Malvernian, Jul 1917).

He won the MC with the following citation:
'For conspicuous gallantry on June 16, 1915, at Hooge. When our troops were forced to retire from the third line of German trenches he rallied part of the retiring troops and reoccupied and held the vacated trench under heavy fire until he was himself forced later to withdraw owing to retirements on his flanks. He was severely wounded on this occasion.'

On the 9th May 1917, Captain Lawrence William McArthur MC & Lieutenant Joseph Senior were in a Sopwith Strutter A8226 and were attacked. During the fight they appeared to have driven down one of their attackers, but Senior was badly wounded in the stomach and had his hand partially severed. McArthur put the Strutter into a spin and returned to Baillieu aerodrome. Senior later died of his wounds. The victory was claimed by Vitzfeldwebel Witterkind from Jasta 28 but this was not confirmed.Airwar19141918

Brass plaque memorial at St Nicholas Church, Chislehurst.IWM

Service record: WO 374/43517

2nd Lieut John Parker Norfolk Simpson
House: No 3 1904 - 1908. Regiment: Royal Fusiliers.
Died: 27 May 1915 aged 25 in Belgium. Died of wounds in German hands at Iseghem.
Cemetery: Harlebeke New Brit X1 C 12

Son of J. P. Simpson, Ravensmede, Alnwick, b. 1890
Lower IV—Modern II. House XI Football.
Great War, Private Public Schools Batt. 1914, 2nd Lieutenant Royal Fusiliers.
Died of wounds (in German hands) at Iseghem, May 27, 1915.

'Second Lieutenant 5th Battalion Royal Fusiliers, attached 3rd Battalion. He was reported as wounded early in June, as wounded and missing on July 13th, but is now stated to have died on May 27 at Isgehem of wounds received near Ypres.' (Malvernian, Jul 1915).

No of records: 3. View all 459 records     Second World War