Devonport (Devenport), Arthur John

Arthur John Devonport was born circa 1922, (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/29A/38) the son of Joseph Harold and Florence Emily Devonport (nee Cooper), who, I believe, married in St. Ethelwold’s Church, Shotton on the 31st of December 1921.

In 1911, Joseph Harold Devenport was living with his family at Everdale (Overdale?), Fairfield Road, Queensferry, Flintshire (6 rooms).  Head of the household was Arthur John Devenport, 45, an Ironworker, born in Handsworth, Birmingham, he tells us that he had been married for 23 years to Julia Devenport (nee Upton).   Julia Devenport was 43 years old and born in Summerhill, Birmingham, she tells us that they had 13 children of whom 4 died and sadly, their youngest son on this census, died in the September quarter of 1911, making those 5 very sad losses.   Their eldest daughter May Matilda Devenport was 22 years old and single; she helped in the house.  Charles Henry Devenport, 19 and single, born in West Bromwich and George Frederick, 17, also born there were Ironworkers.   Sidney Robert Devenport, 13, was a Shop Assistant, and Joseph Harold Devenport, 11, at school, was also born in West Bromwich.  Clara Lena Devenport, 8, Alfred Leslie, 4, Wilfred John, 3 and Bertrum*, 9 months, were all born in Connah’s Quay.   Julia’s mother, Selina Upton, 73 and a widow was also in the household, she had been born in Summerhill, Birmingham.

*Born in the September quarter of 1910 (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/12A/10) and died in the September quarter of 1911 (Hawarden Vol. 11b Page 302).

St. Ethelwold’s Church, Shotton on the 31st of December 1921.   Joseph Harold Devenport was 22 a Bachelor and Ironworker, his residence 13, Welsh Road, Garden City, Father, Arthur John Devenport, Deceased & Florence Emily Cooper, 19 and a Spinster, residence, 9, Bridge View, Garden City, Father, John Cooper, Deceased.   (After Banns) Witnesses: -Charles Henry Devenport & Mary Ethel Williams.

There is a Baptism for Arthur John in the Hawarden Parish Registers, where it states that the baptism was performed at St. Andrews Church, Garden City on the 18th of June 1922 and he was born on the 18th of May 1922, son of Harold & Florence Emily Devenport, Garden City.

I believe that Arthur John Devonport, was named after his grandfather Arthur John Devonport, of 13, Welsh Road, Garden City, who was buried in Hawarden on the 2nd of May 1917 age 51 years.

As no Censuses since 1921 have been published it is hard to get to find out about Arthur John’s early life.    Here is Joseph Harold Devenport living with his mother and siblings on the 1921 census, which was taken on the 19th of June 1921 before his marriage in December 1921.

They were living at 13, Welsh Road, Garden City, Queensferry, Flintshire.  Joseph Harold’s mother, Julia Devenport was a widow and aged 52 years and 6 months old, she had been born in Birmingham, Warwickshire.   Her eldest son Charles Henry Devenport had taken on the role of Head of the household and was 30 years and 3 months old, he had been born in West Bromwich, Staffordshire, as had his brother George Fred Devenport, aged 27 years and 3 months.  Sidney Robert Devenport was 23 years and 11 months, and Harold Devenport was 21 years and 7 months old, they had been born in Great Bridge, Staffordshire and these 4 sons were working at John Summers & Sons, Steelworks.   Her other children were Arthur Leslie Devenport, 14 years and 9 months old, and Wilfred Devenport, 12 years and 11 months old, both born in Connah’s Quay.  Dorothy Devenport 5 years and 6 months old had been born in Garden City, Flintshire.   Also, in the household was Selina Upton, Julia’s mother, aged 80 years and 6 months, a widow. Born in Birmingham, Warwickshire.

After the 1921 census, Joseph Harold and Florence Emily Cooper were to marry in the December 1921, see above.

The 1939 Register was taken on the 29th of September 1939 and War was declared on the 3rd of September 1939.  Arthur is probably one of the redacted records, he would have been only 17 years old then.   As can be seen there are 7 redacted records, probably the children of Joseph & Florence.  They were living at 75 Sealand Avenue, Garden City, Flintshire, Wales.   Joseph H. Devonport (sic) had been born on the 9th of November 1899 and was an Ironworker, Heavy Worker.   Florence’s date of birth was the 2nd of March 1902, and her description was “Housewife.”

Any information to tell Arthur John’s story, so he won’t be forgotten would be appreciated.

I have listed below websites that may add to the picture of what Arthur John went through: –

To find out more, you will have to visit Kew or get a researcher to look up the records below: –

Catalogue description -Field Regiments: 115 Regt.

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Reference:         WO 172/7416


Field Regiments: 115 Regt.

Date:     1945 1st Jan.- 30th Sept. 1945

Held by:               The National Archives, Kew

Legal status:       Public Record(s)

Closure status:  Open Document, Open Description

Access conditions:           Closed For 29 years – open now.  (Page 493)

Excerpt from :- SOUTHEAST ASIA COMMAND (19 May to 18 June 45)


The main British operation has been an advance by the Indian 19th Div* east from Toungoo, along the Mawchi Road. The line was approximately 11 miles east of Prome. On 21 May enemy attacks were repulsed. On the 28th the Indian troops started their advance. It has been very slow, as the enemy contested every attempt to move. Details of the fighting are unknown. By 18 June the British had advanced to a line 23½ miles east of Toungoo. The enemy retained hills bordering the road for a mile and a half in rear of the advance British elements. To aid the foregoing advance a left flank column was started from the vicinity of Aungban with the mission of reaching the Salween valley in rear of the enemy facing Toungoo. On 1 June this force attacked a defended hill position and captured a zigzag road approach covering a 3,000-foot lift. Next battle developed on 5 June near Lake Inle. This lasted to include the 8th, when the enemy was driven out of Kalaw. On the 11th contact with the enemy was lost.

Minor fighting has occurred near Kyaukkyi and Shwegin.

*See below: –

Regiment                             Type    Origin/Change         Where – When – With

115 (N Midland) Fd Regt   TA       Of 60 Fd Regt.           France 1940 – GHQ Troops (Army Fd Regt)

UK 1940-2 – E Comd (Army Fd Regt), Ceylon, India 1942-4 – 20 & 19 Indian Divs,  Burma 1944-5 – 19 Indian Div.

Disposal  –         315 Med Regt,_Royal_Artillery

Excerpt from :-

115th (North Midland) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery

Burma Campaign

19th Indian Division began to clear the Toungoo–Mawchi road, but the fighting was tough, and it took seven days to capture 1.5 miles (2.4 km) of road.  115th Field Regiment was pulled out for rest from 19 May to 3 June, when it was ordered back to the Mawchi road. It came into action alongside 62nd Indian Infantry Brigade in a very open position on a ridge, with the guns wheel to wheel. The exposed regiment came under enemy shellfire and an ammunition lorry was hit. Battery Sergeant Major Norman Brummell led a party to clear the ammunition, which they did despite being surrounded by bursting charges. Just as they completed the job, BSM Brummell and others were hit by a Japanese shell and were killed. Later, BSM Leonard Hayes dragged a blazing limber full of ammunition away from the tightly packed gun position of 480 Bty. Both Hayes and (posthumously) Brummell were awarded the MM.[42][58][59][60][61]

Also –

Excerpt taken from:- Battle of Rangoon – 25 Apr 1945 – 6 May 1945

On 6 May, the Battle of Rangoon officially ended as the Indian 26th Division made contact with the Indian 17th Division near Hlegu. The Allied offensive in Burma was generally regarded as over at this point, although fighting would continue as Anglo-Indian troops, British aircraft, and American aircraft continued to harass the Japanese troops attempting to escape Burma into neighboring Thailand. Meanwhile, many Anglo-Indian units saw their role converting to police duty, at least in May and Jun 1945, to contain the widespread looting and vigilantism that took place in Rangoon after the Japanese evacuated.

Casualty List (2) (Malaya Cont.) – Killed in Action

Royal Artillery 1131496 DEVEPORT (sic) (833) Gnr. A.J.  115 Fd. R. – 12th June 1945.

His entry in the Royal Artillery Attestations, shows Arthur John: – 1131496 (F/s NO. 1459411) (O/No.L485 MA) (N/R ZIRK 125/4) DEVONPORT, Arthur John  – Attested in 1941 – Killed in Action 12th June 1945.

His Casualty Card shows that his place of birth was Garden City, and his residence was Queensferry.   His place of death is shown as “Unknown – Burma” and he was Killed in Action, age 23 years.

If anyone can add anything to Arthur John’s story so he won’t be forgotten, please contact the website.

He was obviously loved as his name was put forward to be added by his family or friends to the Hawarden WW2 War Memorial, he must be remembered.





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