Sydney’s mother Rose had been married before and had lost her husband John Edward Jones who, I believe, she had married in Gravesend in the June quarter of 1904 (Gravesend Dist. 2a Vol. 1206.).
On the 1901 census Rose Finch was in Paisley Scotland with her sister Eliza and Eliza’s family in 1901 age 15. I cannot get a copy of the Scottish Censuses from Ancestry, only a list of the people in the house etc., no relationships sadly, but Lorraine Jones who is connected to the family through John Edward Jones, tells me that this is Rose in 1901. Many thanks to Lorraine for her input and corrections re Rose and John Edward Jones especially.
I believe Rose met John Edward Jones, who was from Mold, when he was in the Army, perhaps when he was at Training Camp in Kent at some point, as that is where, I believe, they married. I say this because when John Edward died, his War Gratuity of £5 leads me to believe that he had been in the army for a number of years, perhaps as a territorial, but Lorraine tells me that he was in the Boer War and was injured, which explains the £5 and not the £3, as the average War Gratuity was £3 for men who had enlisted when war broke out.
The 1911 census shows Rose,26, John Edward Jones, 28, a Cutter Coal Merchant born Mold, Flints and their two children, John W. Jones, age 6 & Ivy Jones, age 5, both born in Gravesend living at LLwynegrin Cottage, Old Road, Mold (4 rooms) with John’s parents John & Hannah Elizabeth.
John Edward Jones died in the Great War on the 16th June 1915, he was in the 1st Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers, Regimental Number – 7324, he has no known grave as he is remembered on the Menin Gate at Ypres. In the UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929, the sole Legatee was his widow Rose who received £7 8s 11d on the 14th June 1916 and his War Gratuity of £5 on the 25th August 1919.
Lorraine Jones kindly told me about Sidney as he is a Step cousin once removed of hers and until she started researching her family tree she did not know of his existence. “My connection is that his Mother Rose Barton was previously married to my Great Uncle John Edward Jones known as Eddie (1882 – 1915) from Mold and as you will see from the date he was killed in WW1 (and is commemorated on the Mold War Memorial).
Eddy was in the army during the Boer war and after for a while and it was whilst in Kent that he met and Married Rose . They moved back to Mold with their two children by 1911”
“Rose was by this time a widow herself and living in Mold with two small children , according to John William’s Army Records Eliza Butler Finch is shown as his next of kin and her address is given as Llwynegryn Cottage , Mold ( the Jones family home ) and she stayed with Rose until her death in 1931.
I made contact with a lady in Mold who knew Rose (and was as I discovered after a lot of digging , a relative ). She said that every year until she died Rose would come to the Mold War Memorial every remembrance day to put a poppy on for her first husband, which I thought was lovely.“
Rose Jones (nee Finch) was then to meet Alfred Bunyard Barton and married him in a Civil or Superintendent Attended Ceremony, Lorraine tells me, at The English Presbyterian Chapel in Mold on 26 May 1919 (Flintshire (Mold) HOL/43/65). Witnesses were William Arthur Jones (John E’s elder brother) and his wife Gertrude Ellen Jones. (Lorraine’s Grandfather was Thomas Alun Jones the youngest of the 4 boys , Peter George Jones was the other son he died aged 7 from TB.)
Sydney was born in the March Quarter of 1923 (Holywell Vol. 11b Page 317), his sister Bertha E., being born in 1919, but not registered until 1920 (Holywell Vol 11b Page 372) and his brother Alfred Edward having been born in 1922 (Flintshire (Mold) MOLD/63/62).
Alfred & Rose with Alfred Edward are seen on the 1939 Register, which was taken on the 29th September 1939, living at 55 Sealand Avenue,Garden City, Flintshire, Alfred was a Water Service Pipeline employee, his birth date given as 28 Jun 1877, whilst Rose’s birthday being given as 13 Sep 1885, which gels with the documents I have seen and have, if anyone wants to have copies. There are two redacted records, and I wonder if one of them is Sydney? Alfred E. Barton’s birthdate is given as 8th March 1922 and he is a Storekeeper and single on the Register, whereas Bertha E. born 26th November 1919 doing “Home Duties,” but I believe that she married Albert H. Byrne at St. Bartholomew’s Church, Sealand in the June quarter of 1943.
Ancestry.co.uk – Family Tree – PhillipsHobbs Family Tree – hk43_1 -sent a message 9th June 2018.
Alfred Bunyard Barton, Sydney’s father was to die in the December quarter of 1946 (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/30A/95), just a year after Sydney was Killed in Action. Rose was to live until December 1979 (Delyn – Volume: 24 Page: 0383) age 94 years.
However I know little of Sydney’s death, so if anyone can shed some light on his life, I would be very grateful as he needs to be remembered for his sacrifice.
I know that he was the only one from his Regiment on the CWGC Registration Report Form who died on the 25th November 1944 and on the Casualty Form (page 4), he is one of only two men who died on that day, the other one being from the Durham Light Infantry.
Taken from the History Information on the CWGC citation:- On 3 September 1943 the Allies invaded the Italian mainland, the invasion coinciding with an armistice made with the Italians who then re-entered the war on the Allied side. Following the fall of Rome to the Allies in June 1944, the German retreat became ordered and successive stands were made on a series of defensive lines. In the northern Appenine mountains the last of these, the Gothic Line, was breached by the Allies during the Autumn campaign and the front inched forward as far as Ravenna in the Adratic sector, but with divisions transferred to support the new offensive in France, and the Germans dug in to a number of key defensive positions, the advance stalled as winter set in. The war cemetery at Faenza was formed during these months for the burial of those who were killed in the static fighting before the Allied advance was renewed in April 1945. Faenza War Cemetery contains 1,152 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War, 13 of which are unidentified.
Please click on the links to read more about the Queens Own West Kent Regiments movements and action in the War:-
1944: In action at Cassino and up the Peninsula to Florence, the Gothic Line and finally entering Austria.
The 6th Battalion was serving with the 78th Division throughout the war. Shortly Afterwards, the 6th Battalion, commanded by a future politician for the Conservative Party, Lieutenant Colonel Paul Bryan, landed in Italy on 24 September 1943. Like the 5th Battalion, the 6th Royal West Kents was engaged in combat throughout most of the Italian Campaign, seeing action in the Moro River Campaign, the Battle of Monte Cassino, the fighting around the Gothic Line, and the final offensive in Italy in April 1945, followed shortly after by Germany’s surrender and the European war over.
In the Spring of 1944 the three Queen’s Own battalions, although in different divisions, came together at Cassino, with the 6th in the Castle and on Castle Hill, the 1st in the town and the 5th at the railway station. The Germans overlooked these positions from Monastery Hill so movement was impossible in daylight hours. The 6th withstood two counter-attacks and inflicted severe casualties on the enemy.
The 6th. In reserve for the battle, joined in the advance on Rome. Rome fell on June 4th 1944 and the Germans retreated to Lake Trasimenem, where the 6th were in action again.
Many thanks to Lorraine Jones for her input and help.
Sydney was obviously loved as can be seen from the Inscription on his Gravestone “HE DIED THAT WE MIGHT LIVE” and the fact that his name was put forward to be remembered on the Hawarden War Memorial.