Roland M. Poole on the Thiepval Memorial, Photo taken on the 12th April 2015 by Mavis Williams
Roland M Poole first appeared on a census in 1901. It shows him living with his family at 5, Dee Cottages, Saltney, (Flint), Shotton, Cheshire. Roland’s father, John F.M. was 36 and a Sheet Iron Roller who had been born in Morley, Staffordshire. His wife Lititia was 34 and had been born in Birmingham. Their children were Francis H 7, Roland M 5 (They had been born inWolverhampton, Staffordshire). The 2 youngest children were Leslie V 2 and Norman S 5.
1911 census sees the family in Chester Road, Shotton, Flintshire. The father, John Francis M. was 46 and listed again as a ‘Sheet Iron Roller’. Letitia M, his wife of 18 years was 44 and a ‘Tobacconist’. She had given birth to seven children but one had died. The children listed were Francis H 17 who was at school but also a Part Time Assistant in a Shop. Rowland M was 15 and a Schoolboy. Leslie V 12, Norman S. 10, Eric H. 8 and Clement A. M. 5 were all scholars.
The Monumental Inscriptions Book The Flintshire Record Office gave us the fact there was a gravestone with his name on. – in St. Deniol’s Churchyard. The month of death is different to the monumental inscription, (I have checked it and this is what is on the Gravestone.)
“In loving memory of Emma Gammerer who died July 27th 1909, aged 75 years also Pte. Roland M. Poole of the KLS Beloved son of Frank & Lettie Poole, who was killed in France Sep. 9th 1916 aged 20 years. “I have fought the good fight” also the above Letitia Poole who died Jan 7 1927 aged 61 years. “Peace Perfect Peace” also the above Frank Poole who died Nov. 11 1927 aged 83 years.”
Roland is also remembered on the Imperial War Museum – Memorials Project – http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/60367
UK soldiers who died in the Great War 1914 -19, accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk confirms the regimental information above and adds that he was born in Wolverhampton and enlisted in Liverpool.
British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920 about Rowland M Poole does not tell us his first Theatre of War nor when he entered it.
Rowland Maertens Poole in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 tells us that the sole Legatee is his father John F.M. who was paid £3. 11s 4d on the 22nd February 1917 and his War Gratuity of £3 on the 1st September 1919
There is an index card for Rowland in the Flintshire Roll of Honour at the County Record Office in Hawarden. (Flintshire WW1 Index Cards F26 Hawarden Poole, Roland). It confirms the regimental details above and gives the address Rydal Mount, Upperdale, Hawarden. It adds that he served for approximately 12 months and that he was Killed in Action 9th August 1916 on the Somme. The card was signed on the 21st October 1919 by Horace Poole.
Roland was named on 4 other memorials – the Hawarden War Memorial and the memorial screen at St Ethelwold’s Church, Hawarden County School and the Caergwrle War Memorial. Somebody made an effort to ensure he was remembered.
I received a letter from Ann Stone (nee Poole) who explained Roland’s proper name:-
—– Original Message —–
From: “Ann & John Stone”
Sent: Sunday, February 15, 2015 1:51 PM
Subject: Info which may be helpful
I enjoyed your talk on war memorials for the Deeside and District Local
History Society last Thursday.
I looked for the name of an ancestor of mine which was displayed on your
website of the Hawarden memorial.
The name appears to be wrongly spelt. Rowland Martin Poole should read:-
Roland Maertens Poole, of I believe the Liverpool Highlanders Regiment,
born in 1896 died at the Somme in1916 third son of John Francis Maertens
and Sarah Letitia Cammerer.
Another relative by marriage to my mother’s sister was a dispatch rider
somewhere in France who suffered a gas attack and although survived the
conflict died as a result aged 33.His name was James Bain Bennett.
I hope this is of some interest to you.
Ann Stone nee Poole
I replied:- “Thank you so much for getting in touch about Roland’s name, I try to be correct, but it seems his name was miss-spelt all through his Army service” (his Service & GWGC documents).
Many thanks to Ann for adding to Roland’s story.
Additional thanks for further information and photographs to Andrew Moss, (who is researching the Caergwrle War Memorial), and to Andrew’s connections to other relatives of Roland’s , (Carol Bates, Terry Rogers and others in America).