Malvern College Second World War Casualties

Statue of St George which is inscribed 'To Our Brothers', and memorial in the Ante-Chapel.

The following is a list with biographies of the 248 people who attended Malvern College and died due to the Second World War. There is also a corresponding page commemorating the 459 casualties in the First World War.

The fallen are commemorated at Malvern with the statue of St. George, which is inscribed 'To Our Brothers', and the names themselves are written on a marble memorial in the Ante-Chapel.
After the Phoney war had ended, there was not a month from May 1940 to May 1945, that an Old Malvernian did not lose their life, though unlike the First World War there were not major spikes in losses on a particular day or month.
5 were killed in the Battle of Dunkirk at the end of May 1940, and 4 during the Battle of Britain between July and October 1940.
3 OMs lost their lives during the Blitz between September 1940 and May 1941.
21 lost their lives in the Western Desert Campaign between June 1940 to February 1943 with 5 buried at El Alamein War Cemetery and 6 commemorated at the Alamein Memorial.
4 were killed during the Allied invasion of Sicily between July and August 1943, and 5 at the Battle of Monte Cassino between January and May 1944 with 8 commemorated at the Cassino Memorial And Cemetery.
8 were killed after the D-Day landings during Operation Overlord between June and August 1944, and 2 in Operation Market Garden in September 1944.
In South-East Asia, 2 were killed during the Japanese-Thai occupation of Malaya between Dec 1941 and Jan 1942, 4 were killed during the Japanese occupation of Singapore in February 1942, and 7 were killed during the Burma Campaign between 1942 and 1945.
Most (97) OMs served in the R.A.F. with many in Bomber Command. 22 are commemorated at Runnymede Memorial as they have no known grave.
14 served in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve, 5 in the Royal Navy, 31 in the Royal Artillery, and 4 in the Royal Tank Regiment, with the remainder disbursed among 75 other units.

George Chesterton in the Remembrance Day Service of 2009, having described the lives and loss of five of his friends, reflected:
'Some of these brave men have no known grave, but we must remember them, along with all the tens of thousands of others, who gave their lives for their homelands and their friends. It is thanks to them that all of us sit in this Chapel, from a wide variety of countries and backgrounds and are able to sit together in security and friendship.'

The information below is based on 'The Malvern College Register, Second Supplement, 1949' edited for the Malvernian Society by F. W. Roberts, the 'The Malvernian' school magazine, and 'Malvern College: A 150th Anniversary Portrait' by Roy Allen.
Further information was also obtained from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website, the Unit War Diaries held at the National Archives in Kew, and various online commemorative websites whose links have been provided.

Below is a map showing the locations of the 126 cemeteries where Old Malvernians are buried or commemorated in. The markers are coloured yellow for one casualty, orange for between 2 and 4, and red for 5 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 can be seen by clicking on 'Further Info'.

The records can be filtered and/or sorted by surname, house, age, regiment, date, place etc by clicking on the appropriate drop down box and then the 'Search' button below the map.


Month died:
Date Died:
eg 27 July 1942 or 27 July     Died this day
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L/Cpl. Neville Topp Cowan
House: 9, 1935 - 1939. Regiment: R.A.C.
Died: 28 June 1944 aged 22 in France. Killed in action in Normandy.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: St. Manvieu War Cemetery, Cheux VII. F. 12.

Son of William J. Cowan, M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., and of Constance M. Cowan, of Kearsley, Lancashire, and of Southwood, Worlsey, Manchester.
Sci VI.
3rd County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters)
Royal Armoured Corps

Major Robert Blyth Fleming
House: Sch, 1921 - 1926. Regiment: Royal Tank Regt.
Died: 10 July 1944 aged 36 in France. Killed in action.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: St. Manvieu War Cemetery, Cheux VIII. H. 8.

Son of Robert Alexander Douglas and Ethel Mildred Fleming, Hawley House, Blackwater.
School Prefect.
Husband of Marjorie Ethel Fleming, of Farnborough, Hampshire.
7th Royal Tank Regiment, R.A.C.

Major Fleming was killed along with 4 others on Hill 112 near Eterville. 9 Tigers and Panthers knocked out. 8 Churchills k/o.
Unit war diary: WO 171/868
Operation Jupiter - wikipedia

Capt. Frank Norman Shippam
House: 8, 1928 - 1933. Regiment: Royal Sussex Regt.
Died: 10 July 1944 aged 30 in France. Killed in action.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: La Delivrande War Cemetery, Douvres VII. A. 2.

Son of Frank and Emily Shippam, Potwell Copse Ho., Walberton, Arundel, Sussex.
Hist V. House Prefect. Shooting VIII. Cricket XXII.
Peterhouse, Cambridge.
Husband of Elizabeth Mary Shippam, of Bighton, Hampshire.
Royal Sussex Regiment attd. 1/7th Bn. Middlesex Regiment.
Mentioned in Despatches.

At 16:00 on the 9th July 1944 he was wounded by a mine whilst making a recce in a jeep near Colville. The next day the unit war diary stated that 'Report received on death of Captain Shippam from pneumonia brought on by shock, a very sad loss.'
Unit war diary: WO 171/1345

Capt. Nigel Wendover Beeson
House: 9, 1932 - 1937. Regiment: Scots Guards.
Died: 30 July 1944 aged 25 in France. Killed in action.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: Hottot-Les-Bagues War Cemetery VIII. E. 1.

Son of Ernest and Doris Beeson, Heatherlands, St. George's Hill, Weybridge.
Hist VI. Head of House. Junior Chapel Prefect. XI Football 1935, 1936 (Capt.). XI Cricket, 1936, '37. Rackets Pair, '35, '36, '37. Athletic Colours. Cadet Officer.
Clare College, Cambridge. Cambridge Soccer Blue, and one of the best half-backs the School ever produced.
Husband of Anne Margaret Beeson, of Westminster, London.
Capt. Scots Guards.

The Bishop of Barking writes:- Captain Nigel Wendover Beeson, Scots Guards, who was killed in Normandy recently, was an outstanding example of the product of home influence and public school education. He was a conspicuous figure at Malvern, and at Cambridge he was a double blue. We had been in touch during his school and university days, and our friendship was renewed when he was stationed for a year or so close to Loughton. He honoured me with an invitation to officiate at his wedding 18 months ago, and only in May last at the baptism of his boy. Handsome and innocent in the best sense of the word, and utterly regardless of self, he was just such a character as the country can ill afford to lose. A shell hit his tank and he got out to help his driver. A second shell killed him instantly. He was the second of three brothers to give his life for his country. (Malvernian, Dec 1944)

G/Capt. Charles Henry Appleton
House: Sch, 1920 - 1924. Regiment: R.A.F.
Died: 12 August 1944 aged 38 in France. Missing, Normandy.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: Banneville-La-Campagne War Cemetery IV. C. 14.

Son of Capt. Henry M. Appleton and Maud Appleton,
Husband of Yvonne Marjarie Appleton, of Marandellas, Southern Rhodesia.
C.B.E., D.S.O., D.F.C., Croix de Guerre, Czech War Cross.
124 Wing. Royal Air Force.

'No. 124 Wing RAF was a Hawker Typhoon formation comprising of No. 137 Squadron RAF, No. 181 Squadron RAF, No. 182 Squadron RAF and No. 247 Squadron RAF.
On 10 June 1944 the wing took part in the Attack on Panzer Group West's headquarters at La Caine with 40 rocket-armed Typhoons which attacked in three waves from low altitude.'

'Air Ministry, 5th August, 1941. ROYAL AIR FORCE. The KING has been graciously pleased to approve the following awards in recognition of gallantry displayed in flying operations against the enemy: — Distinguished Service Order:
Wing Commander Charles Henry APPLETON, D.F.C. (24139), No. 604 Squadron.
This officer has commanded the squadron since February, 1941, and by his sound organisation, drive, energy, and high skill in flying has enabled it to attain a splendid record in night fighting. Whilst under his inspiring leadership, the squadron has destroyed at least 45 enemy aircraft at night and damaged many others.. He has personally destroyed two and damaged two enemy aircraft.'
London Gazette

Combat reports in May 1941 over the South of England and Flintshire

'Group Captain CHARLES HENRY APPLETON was pilot of Hawker Typhoon 1b MN928 'G' of 247 (Royal Air Force) Squadron. His aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire (flak) near Flers on Saturday the 12th August 1944. He was a Rhodesian pilot and had only one leg'.

Lt-Col. Robert George Cracroft
House: Sch, 1923 - 1928. Regiment: Royal Tank Regt.
Died: 13 August 1944 aged 34 in France. Killed in action in Normandy.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: Ranville War Cemetery IV. B. 17.

Son of Colonel Hugh Cracroft, R.A.S.C., and of Georgina Cracroft (nee Stevenson), The Garth, Combe Down, Bath.
House Prefect.
Husband of Helen Elizabeth Cracroft, of Shaldon, Devon.
148th (9th Bn. The Loyal Regt. [North Lancashire]) Regt.
Royal Armoured Corps

'By his devotion to duty and gallantry throughout the action on the 21st May 1940, south of ARRAS, he showed a very good example to others. On one occasion, having noticed some German infantry in position in a hollow supported by A.T. guns, he gathered together such ‘I’ Tanks as were available on the spot - 3 in number, and personally led the attack.
He was mounted in a Light Tank which is thin skinned and vulnerable, to A.T Gun fire. With utter disregard to his safety he dashed amongst the enemy, the majority of whom were killed, and their vehicles which included armoured reconnaissance cars, were destroyed. On another occasion, after the remnants of the battalion were in a position of readiness to assist our infantry in the event of a counter attack, he personally organised the attack, successfully resisting an encounter with German Tanks (one at least of which was a heavy type) which resulted with the withdrawal of the enemy.
This measure was carried out during a heavy enemy air attack, which made Captain Cracroft’s task very difficult.'
MC Citation: WO-373_15_16

Personal tribute in The Times:— Many of his friends at home and indeed all those who knew Robert Cracroft's worth must be thinking of him to-day, for his was a personality that stood out head and shoulders among his fellows. His last duty before the present campaign in France began was performed as a G.S.O. instructor at the Staff College. Here he was surrounded by officers, teachers, and students alike, all of them picked out from their fellows as having attainments above the average, but, even in that high company, it is no exaggeration to say that he showed himself a very pattern of the finest type of British regimental officer and one of which the old British Regular Army might well be proud. He combined with great charm of manner a quick brain, a strong character, determination, and ideals. Had he been spared, he might well have gone far in the Army as a leader of men.

Lieut. Robert Hayes-Smith
House: Sch, 1938 - 1940. Regiment: Duke of Wellington’s Regt.
Died: 15 August 1944 aged 20 in France. Killed in action.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: Ranville War Cemetery VIII. B. 13

Son of Dr Alfred Hayes Smith and May Hayes Smith, 2 Blenheim Rd., Bradford, and Manningham, Bradford.
C-in-C's Certificate for gallantry.
7th Bn. Duke of Wellington's (West Riding Regiment)

Lt-Col. Oscar William Robert Dent
House: 9, 1919 - 1922. Regiment: R.A.
Died: 18 August 1944 aged 40 in France. Killed in action in Normandy.
Battle: Operation Overlord: June – August 1944. Cemetery: Bayeux War Cemetery XIX. A. 10.

Son of Henry James Dent and Christiana Dent, Perton Ct., Stoke Edith.
House Prefect. Football XXII.
With Agricultural Dept., Imp. Chem. Industries Ltd.
Husband of Kathleen S. Dent, of Hereford.
Cdg. 110 Lt. A.A. Regt. Royal Artillery

'Joined a Territorial Brigade of the R.A. in 1924. Was in action with the B.E.F. in 1940 and evacuated his arm of the Regiment from Dunkirk with the loss of only two men.' (Malvernian, Dec 1944)

'Lt Col O.W.R. Dent TD R.A. Killed by mine at 903319 at approx 0900hrs. Clecy.'
Unit war diary: WO 171/1129

No of records: 8. View all 248 records     First World War

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