Name of Researcher / Enw’r ymchwylydd: Mavis Williams
Name of Memorial / Enw’r gofeb: Connahs Quay
Name / Enw: Cooper, Thomas
Regiment/Catrawd: 2nd South Wales Borderers (formery Royal Welsh Fusiliers)
Service Rank and Number / Rheng gwasanaeth a rhif: Private 41271 (formerly 69361)
Military Cemetery/Memorial / Fynwent milwrol: Cambrai Memorial
Ref No Grave or Memorial / Rhif cyfeirnod bedd: Panel 5
Country of Cemetery or Memorial / Gwlad y fynwent neu gofeb: France
Medals Awarded / Medalau a ddyfarnwyd: Victory and British War medals
Date of Death: 20th November 1917
Date and Circumstances of Death / Dyddiad ac amgylchiadau marwolaeth:
Killed in Action 20th November 1917
Thomas first appears on a census in 1901. He was living with his family at 9 Golftyn Street, Connah’s Quay. The family comprised of Martha, widow and mother aged 43 who originated from Northop Hall, Flintshire and her children Joseph 18 a clerk, Martha 15, Mary J 13, Thomas 9 and William 7.
Ten years later in the 1911 census the family was living at 13 Golftyn Street. Martha was then 56 and living at home were Mary Jane 23 and a dressmaker, Thomas 19 a weigh clerk and William 17 a bricklayer’s labourer.
I believe that Thomas C. Cooper married Sydney Roberts in St. Mary’s Church, Liscard (Manor Lane) (Wirral Cheshire (C3/3/276) in the June quarter of 1916. (or FreeBMD – Birkenhead Vol. 8a Page 987)
UK Soldiers who died in The Great War 1914 -19 accessible on www.ancestry.co.uk gives us all the regimental details above and tells us that he enlisted in Connah’s Quay and that he was ‘killed in action’.
Thomas Cooper in the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929 tells us that the Sole Legatee was his wife Sydney Cooper, who was paid £6. 17s 1d, which included his War Gratuity of £5.0s 0d on the 17th October 1919
Thomas Cooper in the UK, WWI Service Medal and Award Rolls, 1914-1920 does not tell us where his first Theatre of War was nor when he entered it.
There is a card for Thomas in the Flintshire Roll of Honour at the County Archive Office in Hawarden. It gives the address 13 Golftyn Street Connah’s Quay, his regiment and number. It says he served from July 1917 and that he was reported missing on 20th November 1917. This card includes a letter from Thomas’s wife Sydney Cooper of Liscard Wallasey (see copy below). When Sydney referred to “one of the cards” it may be she was referring to one of the Flintshire WW1 Index Cards that was distributed to Servicemen’s families from the Gladstone family, they wanted a record of all Flintshire Servicemen. It says:-
Dear Mrs Davies Thanks for your letter, glad to say Phyllis and myself is keeping pretty well. I shall be pleased to receive one of the cards of my husband private Thomas Cooper 41271 2nd South Wales Borderers C Coy S71 BEF France. Joined up on the 20th July 1917 was reported missing 20th November 1917. Yours truly, Sydney Cooper.
Thomas is named on the Memorial Plaque in St.Mark’s Church, Connah’s Quay.