What were people back in Sychdyn doing whilst the troops were away fighting?
Ysgol Sychdyn during the Great War 1914 – 1919 According to the School Log Book, life at the school during the war years went on relatively normally. There are few references to the war and no mention of the ex pupils that were killed, (Sychdyn was just an infant school until 1915, most pupils then went onto Northop school). Nevertheless, there were some references to war issues which I reproduce here because they are interesting and relevant. All the entries were written by the headteachers at the time (Mr J. R. Macfarlane, Mr Arthur Evans and Mr William Davies)
Nov 25th 1914. This morning I received from Mrs Ivor Davies, 4 lbs of wool and 12 sets of needles from the Soughton Committee in order that the upper standard girls should knit scarves for the troops. Dec 22nd 1914This morning I forwarded 15 scarves and 7 pairs of mittens to Mrs Ivor Davies, Bryn Siriol. Oct 21st 1915.All the children brought potatoes this morning. These are to be sent as a gift to the Leeswood Hall Hospital for wounded soldiers. Dec 7th 1915 I was away from 10 – 12.10 this morning visiting the Recruiting Office. Jan 10th 1916 Dear Sir, Please convey to the children our very grateful thanks for the 6 chairs which they have kindly sent for the use of the soldiers at the Leeswood Hall Hospital. Believe me, yours very sincerely, B Lloyd Parry . Quartermaster. March 21st 1916The Attendance Officer called here this am. He informed me he was leaving to join the army. Nov 11th 1918The children were given a holiday in the afternoon to celebrate the cessation of hostilities and signing of the armistice by Germany. June 30th 1919The managers granted a half holiday today to celebrate the ‘Signing of Peace’. July 19th 1919Peace celebrations took place today. The scholars from this school were entertained at Northop in conjunction with the Northop children. Nov 7th 1919Today four German rifles were sent to the school from the Northop CE school. Dec 17th 1919I received today a number of Peace Memorial Certificates from Mrs Helen Gladstone. Nov 11th 1920The two minutes silence was observed today in commemoration of Armistice Day.
Nov 11th 1924The children paid a visit to the War Memorial and kept the two minutes silence after which a hymn was sung.
The School Log Books are available at the Flintshire Archive Office in Hawarden (Ref C/LB/63/1
Girls from Ysgol Sychdyn selling daffodils for a Red Cross appeal for wounded soldiers who were patients in Leeswood Hall auxiliary hospital
County Herald 31 March 1916. (They didn’t print the photograph in the newspaper- just this description of it)
The County Herald 2nd October 1914
The County Herald 18th November 1914 ‘The programme was rather lengthy’ They must have been there till midnight!
The County Herald 4th December 1914 What is a ‘cholera belt’? Does anybody know?
Sychdyn girl weds soldier. The County Herald 9th July 1915
The new Mrs G Lloyd Thomas receives a letter from her husband (County Herald 22 October 1915)
Good News from the front. The County Herald 5th November 1915
Frustratingly, this fantastic little item of Sychdyn news has not been copied very well onto the micro film as it lies on the fold of the newspaper. It is from The County Herald 3rd December 1915. Here is an educated guess at how it should read –
Letter from the ‘Soughton Boys’
-Lance Corporal J Tyson Machine Gun Section 10th Battalion, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, in France writes us as follows on date November 26th -” Just a few lines on behalf of the Soughton boys thanking one and all for what they have done to help in getting a ball for us to pass the time away while we are out of the trenches. You don’t know how cold it is in the winter, especially where we haven’t any fire to get to. We have got to have something to keep us warm. Hoping we have something else in the future. This letter leaves all the boys in the pink at present, so I will close my letter with many thanks and best wishes.”
And yet more fund raising. The County Herald 10th December 1915
The Reverend Christmas Jones for the Front . The County Herald 23rd June 1916
Another letter from Jack Tyson County Herald 24th December 1915
The next three photographs are probably pre -war but they were too intruiging to leave out. If anyone can help us explain any of them, please get in touch. They were provided by Jane Bradshaw who is a member of the Piercy family.
This is, we believe a church outing. Isabella Piercy is seated on the second row from the front and is the 7th from the left. On her knee is baby Griffith dressed in white. This is circa 1897
What on earth this is about, we can’t begin to guess. What are the sashes about? Can anyone help? Again, Isabella Piercy is there, standing right of centre with a brooch at her throat and wearing a straw hat. She is holding baby Griffith who has a dark hat on. This would be circa 1898 and it is in Sychdyn.
We think this must be the opening ceremony for the new Coop in Sychtyn (with a ‘T’).
Advertisement from a Parish Magazine of 1914
Gladys Jones whose mother was Jenny Piercy (sister to Griffith and William) kindly sent us this photograph from Canada.
The lady is walking along the road now known as Vownog Newydd. The large house on the right was the home of Jack Tyson who figures frequently on this page with his letters from France to the County Herald. It is said that the house was once used as the first school in Sychdyn
Thanks to Robert Hodgkinson for this photograph of New Brighton Road
12th September 1919 County Herald
We were delighted to receive this wonderful photograph of P.C. Wasley who apprehended the apple pilferers in the news item above. Many thanks to Pauline Higgins, the great niece of P.C. Wasley who shared the photograph with us. What we need now, of course is some mug shots of the villains. Anyone?
Who is this Mystery Major?
This item wich appeared in the County Herald on 19th October 1917 is something of a mystery. Major Samuel seems to have been a remarkable soldier. He signed up at a recruitment meeting in Sychdyn Village Hall but we know nothing else at all about him. Can anyone help?