George Arthur is commemorated twice on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission database, as he served under the name of Ellison and well as Ellson, his true family name. Please click on the links here and below –https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2055265/ellson,-george-arthur/.
I start this with reservations as on the Gravestone is the Inscription:-
“THO’ OUR YEARS BE MANY OR FEW EACH WILL BE SPENT REMEMBERING YOU. LOVING WIFE, JUNE & DAVID”
However, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission gives the name of the George Arthur ELLSON’s wife as F.J. ELLSON from Connah’s Quay, so this might not be the right story or indeed the right people, but most of the facts fit in, except of course the name of the bride of George Arthur, who could, of course preferred the name June to Frances Jane, or perhaps her name was Frances June.???? I may also be a clerical error by the CWGC, but I hesitate to say so because of the wonderful work that they do.
George Arthur ELLSON and Frances Jane HUGHES were married at St. Mark’s Church, Connah’s Quay on the 11th of April 1936. George Arthur was an Ironworker, age 18, and his address was given as 18, Back Queen Street, Chester*, his father was Henry ELLSON (Dec.) Storekeeper. George’s bride was Frances Jane HUGHES, age 21, Spinster, her address was 3, Princess Street, Connah’s Quay,and her father was Robert Arnold HUGHES, Brickmaker. (After Banns). Witnesses were Rosanna JONES and Harold ELLSON, (probably George Arthur’s brother)
*This matches the address of his parents on the 1927 Electoral Roll.
Just over 3 years later they are seen on the 1939 Register which was taken on the 29th September 1939. They were at 34, Wellington Street , Chester (Near Back Brook Street). (Another lady lived here, Sch. No. 49 Sarah BARTNELL (RAPER), single, born 6th July 1900, General Dealer Grocery & Sweets, suspect they were in “Rooms” as they used to say.) It is this source that give George Arthur’s date of birth of 23rd February 1915 and Frances Jane’s as 10th August 1914. His occupation is given as a Metal Window Maker.
George Arthur’s parents were Henry & Emma Beven Ellson, and on the 1927 Electoral Register for Boughton Ward, Chester, they are seen living at 18, Back Street, Chester. I believe that they married in Chorlton, Lancashire in 1897 (Chorlton Vol. 8c Page 1390).
The 1911 census shows us that they then went on to have, I believe, Albert Henry in 1899, Beatrice in 1902, Joseph Richard in 1903, Gertrude Victoria in 1906, Percy in 1909. Henry Ellson, then 34 and married 14 years was a Storekeeper in the Engineering Dept. of a Motor Garage, and Emma, also 34 years old, tells us that they had 5 children born to them , all still living. Harold was born circa 1912 (Chester Vol. 8a Page 708) and George Arthur circa 1915 (Chester Vol. 8a, Page 65.) All the children were born in Chester. So according to this George Arthur was their youngest son.
I do not have any information about George Arthur’s early years, so any information would be gratefully received.
George Arthur’s Casualty Form No. 1673, Page 7, tells us that 14747563 ELLISON, Pte G.A. was Killed in Action on the 18th January 1945 and sadly I have not found any more of his Army papers that may help tell his story.
The History Information on CWGC tells a little more:-
The burials in the cemetery, apart from a few dating from November 1944, are almost all from the months of January and February 1945. The men buried here belong mostly to the Scottish regiments of the 52nd (Lowland) Division, engaged in the battle in this vicinity from 18th to 24th January 1945, which had as its object the clearing of a salient west of the River Roer which was still held by the Germans. There are now over 230 1939-1945 War casualties commemorated in this site. So it seems that George Arthur was killed on the first day of the battle.
Second World War
The 5th and 6th Battalions landed in France as part of the 157th Brigade in the 52nd (Lowland) Division in June 1940; after evacuation from Cherbourg later in the month, they landed in Belgium in October 1944 and took part in Operation Infatuate in November 1944 and the subsequent capture of Bremen in April 1945.
The 11th Battalion was converted to armour in 1942, becoming the 156th Regiment in the Royal Armoured Corps, but with the men retaining their Highland Light Infantry cap badges on the black beret of the RAC.
After the War
The Highland Light Infantry was amalgamated with the Royal Scots Fusiliers in 1959 to form the Royal Highland Fusiliers. The regular 1st battalions of the two Regiments combined at Redford Barracks, Edinburgh to form the 1st Battalion of the new regiment (1 RHF).
Also George Arthur may have been fighting in Operation Infatuate as the 5th Bn Highland Light Infantry were among the many regiments involved. please see:- https://www.combinedops.com/Walcheren.htm – ~OPERATION INFATUATE ~ WALCHEREN – 1 to 8 NOV 1944
Any information would be appreciated, especially re George Arthur’s wife’s name.