Aberaeron is a pretty seaside resort town situated on the main A487 road between Aberystwyth and Cardigan. The town is relatively modern, having been planned and developed from 1805 by the Rev. Alban Thomas Jones Gwynne, who built the harbour, which operated as a port and supported a shipbuilding industry in the 19th century. The fallen of both World Wars are commemorated on two brass memorial plaques, which are situated within the Memorial Hall, while Holy Trinity Church contains scrolls which commemorate its fallen Parishioners. Many thanks to Mike Berrell for the photographs of the memorials.
The Great War, 1914-1918
Albert Gordon Davies, MC, Second Lieutenant, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Albert was born at Aberaeron in 1889, the son of John and Elizabeth Alban Davies, of Tanyfron Villa. He was commissioned into the 7th Battalion (Merioneth & Montgomery), Royal Welsh Fusiliers during 1916, but was subsequently attached to another battalion in France. Albert was probably wounded at Messines in 1917, during an action which led to him being awarded the Military Cross. His citation, which was published in the London Gazette of 25 August 1917, read; For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. During an attack in complete darkness, he pushed through our own barrage to the enemy line in order to restore the direction which his platoon had lost, afterwards leading them to their objective. He displayed magnificent gallantry throughout. Sadly Albert died of his wounds at Bailleul on 1 August 1917, aged 27. He is buried at Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, France.
Thomas Davies, Corporal, 13736, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Thomas was born at Aberaeron. He lived at Aberystwyth prior to enlisting at Ogmore Vale into the 9th Battalion, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. The battalion was attached to 58 Brigade, 19th (Western) Division, and landed in France during July 1915, taking up positions north of Loos, near Givenchy, for trench familiarisation. The division took part in a diversionary assault for the Battle of Loos on 25 September 1915 and suffered heavy casualties. It had moved to the Somme prior to the launch of the great offensive there on 1 July 1916, and took part in the capture of La Boisselle. Thomas was killed in action at La Boisselle on 3 July 1916. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, France. Thomas does not appear to be commemorated locally.
Thomas Jones Davies, Second Mate, Mercantile Marine. Thomas was the son of John and Mary Davies. He married Selina Thomas at Aberaeron in 1912, and the couple lived at 1, Vulcan Place, Aberaeron. Thomas served in the Mercantile Marine aboard SS Duckbridge, a Newcastle registered steamer. On 22 February 1916, when on route with Welsh steam-coal for the British fleet from Cardiff to the Orkneys, she struck German mines, and sunk, six miles from Straithie Point. Thomas died in the sinking, and is commemorated alongside his crew-mates on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Alfred Evans, Private, 2754, Welsh Guards. Alfred was born on 14 June 1894, the son of Jenkin and Rachel Evans, of 14, Rock Terrace, Aberaeron. He was an agricultural labourer prior to enlisting into the Welsh Guards on 8 May 1916, and was posted to the 1st Battalion, Welsh Guards in France from 15 December 1916. The battalion was attached to 3rd Guards Brigade, Guards Division. Alfred was wounded in March 1917 and spent a short spell in hospital. He returned to action soon after at took part in the famous attack on Pilckem Ridge that year. The Guards Division was then moved to the Cambrai Sector, and spent the winter around Gouzeaucourt, where it saw heavy casualties during the German spring offensive of 21 March 1918. Alfred suffered gas poisoning during the ensuing fighting, and was evacuated to Britain, where he was hospitalised at the Gerneral Hospital, Denmark Hill, London. He died there of his wounds on 20 April 1918, aged 23, and was brought home to be buried at Rhydybont Congregational Chapelyard.
Evan Evans, Private, 13513, Royal Fusiliers. Evan was born in 1894, the son of John and Ellen Evans, of The Rope and Anchor, Aberaeron. He enlisted at Cardigan into the army, and was posted to the 25th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers. The battalion was raised in London by the Legion of Frontiersmen on 12 February 1915, and on 10 April embarked at Plymouth for East Africa, arriving at Mombasa on 4 May. It took part in fighting against the German Forces which occupied much of East Africa. Evan was wounded in Tanzania late in December 1916, and was hospitalised. He died of his wounds there on 6 January 1917, and is buried at Dar Es Salaam (Upanga Road) Cemetery, Tanzania. His brother, thomas Morris Evans, also fell.
John Evans, Carpenter, Mercantile Marine. John was the son of John and Rachael Evans, of 2, Belle Vue Terrace, Aberaeron. He served as a Carpenter in the Mercantile Marine, aboard the SS Euston, a London registered steamer. On 24 October 1917, she was on route from Malta to Mudros with a cargo of coal when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UC-34. John was the only casualty among her crew. He was 55 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
John Morgan Evans, Sergeant (Signaller), 562, South African Rifles. John was the son of John and Catherine Evans, of 1, Alban Square, Aberaeron. He probably lived in South Africa prior to the outbreak of war, as he served with the 2nd Battalion, South African Rifles. John died of fever during the campaign in German occupied East Africa on 6 June 1916. He was 34 years old, and is buried at Iringa Cemetery, Tanzania.
Thomas Morris Evans, Private, 52053, Cheshire Regiment. Thomas was born in 1897, the son of John and Ellen Evans, of The Rope and Anchor, Aberaeron. He lived in London prior to the war, and enlisted into the Royal Welsh Fusiliers on 1 April 1916. He was transferred to the 13th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment on 4 September 1916, which was attached to 74 Brigade, 25th Division. The Division had been in France since 26 September 1915, and were posted to the Vimy area, where they defended Vimy Ridge against a German attack in May 1916. They then moved to the Warloy area and attacked on 3 July near Thiepval, remaining on the Somme over the coming months. Thomas joined the battalion here, but within weeks of arriving in France. he was killed in action on 21 October 1916. He has no known grave, and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, France. His brother Evan also fell.
David William Griffiths, Private, 45141, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. David was the son of Elizabeth Griffiths, of 2, Waterloo Street, Aberaeron. He enlisted at Cardigan on 7 December 1915 into the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, and was posted to France on 16 July 1917, becoming attached to the 13th Battalion, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, which formed part of 113 Brigade, 38th (Welsh) Division. David joined the battalion as a reinforcement after its exertions at Mametz Wood in July 1916, and was with the battalion during its famous assault on Pilckem Ridge in July 1917. They then moved to Armentieres, where they remained from September 1917 until March 1918 when the German Spring Offensive was launched on the Somme, coming under increasingly heavy German artillery and gas shelling. David was shot in the chest at Armentieres in March 1918, and was brought to 54 Casualty Clearing Station at Merville, where he died of his wounds on 19 March 1918. He was 35 years old, and is buried at Merville Communal Cemetery Extension, France.
Edwin Lewis Hardy, Private, 41374, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. Edwin was born at Aberaeron, the son of Harry and Mary Ann Hardy. After Harry died, Mary moved to Morfa Cottage, New Quay, while Daniel resided at Peniel Lane. He enlisted at Brecon into the army, and was posted to France where he joined the 1st Battalion, Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. The battalion had been in France since August 1914, and had taken part in almost every major battle since, attached to 2 Brigade, 1st Division. Edwin probably joined the battalion in Flanders early in 1918. The Division was near Estaires when the German Spring Offensive caught them, fighting through the Battles of Estaires, Hazebrouck, and Bethune before being moved South again to Arras, fighting at the Battle of Drocourt-Queant, and at the Battle of Épehy, after the tide had been turned in the favour of the Allies. The Division pushed on towards the St. Quentin Canal. Edwin died on 18 September 1918, during the great advance. He was 19 years old, and is buried at Brie British Cemetery, France. He is also commemorated on a memorial within St Nons Church, Ciliau Aeron.
Edgar Lewis James, Driver, W/1341, Royal Field Artillery. Edgar was born in Aberaeron in 1895, the son of Magdalen James, of Aeron Cottage. He worked for the Great Western Railway, at Ammanford, and enlisted there into the Royal Field Artillery, serving with ‘B’ Battery, 119th Brigade, which was attached to the 38th (Welsh) Division. Edgar landed in France on 24 December 1915, and the Division spent its first winter in the trenches near Armentieres. In June they marched south to the Somme, where they famously captured Mametz Wood in July 1916. The Division suffered terrible casualties at Mametz, and were taken out of the line, and moved to Ypres to rebuild. Edgar was killed in action here on 28 May 1917. He was just 22 years old, and is buried at Dickebusch New Military Cemetery Extension, Belgium. He is also remembered on the GWR Memorial at Chester.
James Thomas Jones, Second Lieutenant, London Regiment. James was the son of David Rees Jones and Mary Jones, of 13, Amersham Grove, New Cross, London. His parents were natives of Aberaeron, but all of their children had been born in London. James was commissioned into the 20th Battalion, London Regiment (Blackheath and Woolwich), which was attached to 141 Brigade, 47th (2nd London) Division. He landed in France in the summer of 1917, joining the battalion at Ypres. James was wounded not long after joining his battalion, and died at Remi Sidings on 24 August 1917 aged 20. He is buried in Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Belgium. Although he was a regular visitor to his grandparents at Aberaeron over the years, James does not appear to be commemorated locally.
Jenkin Jones, First Mate, Mercantile Marine. Jenkin was the son of David and Hannah Jones of Aberaeron. Prior to the war he resided with his wife, Isabella Jones, at 5, North Road, Aberaeron, and served in the Mercantile Marine aboard the SS Wavelet, a West Hartlepool registered cargo ship. On 13 February 1915, Wavelet was eleven miles north-east of Goodwin, bound for Leith, when she struck a German mine. Although badly damaged, the ship was salvaged, and towed to London for repairs. Jenkin however was killed when the mine exploded. He was 40 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
John Jones, Seaman, 1268D, Royal Naval Reserve. John was born at Aberaeron on 27 May 1868, and had lived at Masons Row for many years prior to getting married. He then lived with his wife, Jane Jones, at 5, Parry Street, Ton Pentre. John was a Royal Naval Reservist, and at the outbreak of war rejoined the colours, and was posted to HMS Goliath, a Canopus Class battleship, which had been mothballed at Pembroke Dock. After being swiftly re-commissioned, Goliath took part in operations against German East Africa, participating in the blockade of the German light cruiser SMS Königsberg in the Rufiji River. From March 1915, she took part in the Dardanelles Campaign, supporting the landings at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915. On 13 May 1915 Goliath was sunk in Morto Bay off Cape Helles by two torpedoes from the Turkish torpedo boat destroyer Muavenet-i Milliye. Over 570 of the 700 strong crew died when she sank, including John. He is commemorated alongside his shipmates on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.
John Daniel Jones, Sailor, Mercantile Marine. John was born at Tywnllain, Cillan Aeron in 1901, the son of Elizabeth Jones. The family later resided at 7, Regent Street, Aberaeron. John served in the Mercantile Marine aboard the SS Isleworth, a London registered cargo ship. On 30 April 1918, Isleworth was on route from Bilbao to Middlesbrough with a cargo of ore, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UC-17. Twenty-nine men died in the sinking, including John. He was just 18 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
John Harold Jones, Second Lieutenant, Royal Welsh Fusiliers. John was born in 1889, the son of Benjamin C. Jones, and Mary Jones, of 16, Alban Square, Aberaeron. He was commissioned into the 1st Battalion, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, which was in France attached to 22 Brigade, 7th Division. John probably joined the battalion after the Somme Battles of 1916. In March 1917 they followed up the German Retreat to the Hindenburg Line, and took part in Flanking Operations Round Bullecourt. The 7th were moved into a scene of incredible ferocity at Bullecourt, a strongly fortified village on the Hindenburg Line, and alongside the Australians played a major role in penetrating the village defences. Later in the year the Division moved to Ypres, and fought at the Battle of the Polygon Wood. They then took part in the Battle of Broodseinde, the Battle of Poelcapelle and the Second Battle of Passchendaele, suffering terrible losses during Third Ypres, especially in the fighting for Polygon Wood. John was killed at Polygon Wood on 1 October 1917. He was 28 years old, and is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium.
John Martin Jones, Boatswain (Bosun), Mercantile Marine. John was the son of John and Catherine Jones. Prior to the war he resided with his wife, Mary Ellen Jones (nee Davies), at 6, Victoria Street, Aberaeron. He served with the Mercantile Marine, aboard the SS Australia, a London registered steamer. There is no sign of any enemy action concerning Australia on that day, but on 29 April 1918 John died at sea. He was 47 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Joseph Sydney Jones, Corporal, 546053, Royal Army Medical Corps. Joseph was the son of Jonathan B. Jones and Anne Jones, of Garth, Aberaeron. Prior to the war he resided with his wife, Winifred Alice Jones, at 346, High Street, Lewisham, London. Joseph enlisted in London into the 2nd London Sanitary Company, Royal Army Medical Corps, and was attached to their 29th Sanitary Section. He served in Egypt during the war, and became ill there due to the terrible conditions. Joseph survived the war, but died of sickness in Kent on 5 April 1919, aged 33. He is buried at Lewisham (Ladywell) Cemetery, London. His brother, William Edgar Jones, died in France on 24 October 1918.
Lewis Roberts Jones, Private, 201820, Welsh Regiment. Lewis was born at Aberaeron in 1895, the son of David Rees Jones and Catherine Jones, of 2, Tabernacle Street, Aberaeron. He enlisted at Swansea into the 1/4th Battalion, Welsh Regiment, which was attached to 159 Brigade, 53rd (Welsh) Division. The Division landed at Cape Helles, Gallipoli, on 9 August 1915, and was immediately thrown into action, spending the next few days in isolated pockets, fighting against a Turkish counter-attack during the Battle of Sari Bair, and then at the Attack on Scimitar Hill. The Division remained here throughout the coming months, and suffered severe losses in manpower strength during the great November 1915 blizzard on Gallipoli, when its total strength was reduced to less than that of a full-strength Brigade. On 11 December 1915 the Division was evacuated to Mudros, and by 23 December 1915 were moved to Egypt. They remained on the Suez Canal Defences for the next twelve months, where it took part in operations against the Sultan of Darfur, and in March 1917 took part in the advance into Palestine. Lewis was killed here during the First Battle of Gaza, on 26 March 1917, aged 21. He is commemorated on the Jerusalem Memorial, Israel.
Owen John Jones, Private, 51595, Cheshire Regiment. Owen was the son of David and Mary Jones, of 9, Regent Street, Aberaeron. He worked as a sailor prior to enlisting at Cardiff into the Cheshire Yeomanry on 27 February 1917. Owen was posted to France on 11 October 1917, joining the 13th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment. A week later Owen was posted to the 1st Battalion, Cheshire Regiment. The battalion had been in France since August 1914 attached to 15 Brigade, 5th Division, and had fought in every major battle thereafter. Owen joined the battalion at Berthen, in the Ypres Salient on 20 October, where the battalion was training in preparation of a forthcoming assault on Poelcapelle. On the following day the battalion left Berthen for Micmac Camp, then on 22 October moved forward to Bedford House, relieving a battalion of the Somerset Regiment the following morning. Owen was one of three men killed during the relief that morning, on 23 October 1917. The 19-year-old has no known grave and is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium.
The Reverend William Edgar Jones, Chaplain 4th Class, Army Chaplains’ Department. William was the son of Jonathan B. Jones and Anne Jones, of Garth, Aberaeron. He served as a Chaplain with the Royal Army Chaplain’s Department, and had served in Salonika from 15 July 1917. Early in 1918, William was posted to the 9th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment, which was attached to 74 Brigade, 25th Division. The Division had been in France since September 1915, and had fought at Loos. In 1916 it took part in the Somme Offensive, and in 1917 saw action at Third Ypres. The Division took part in heavy fighting during the German Spring Offensives of March and April 1918. After suffering heavy casualties, it was moved to the Aisne, where it saw further heavy fighting during the German offensive of 27 May. The core of the Division returned to England to rebuild, and returned to the front in September 1918, moving at first to St Riquier near Abbeville. Late in the month, it entrained for Fourth Army, coming under XIII Corps, and took part in the advance across Picardy, fighting at the Battle of Beaurevoir. They then fought during the remainder of the great offensive, at the Battle of Cambrai, the Pursuit to the Selle, the Battle of the Selle, and the Battle of the Sambre. William was wounded during the Battle of the Selle, and was evacuated to a Casualty Clearing Station at Roisel, where he died of his wounds on 24 October 1918. He was 30 years old, and is buried at Roisel Communal Cemetery Extension, France. His brother, Joseph Sydney Jones, also fell.
Evan John Leonard, Civilian, Munition Worker. Evan was born at Ferndale in 1890, the son of Thomas and Jane Evans. The family were originally from Aberaeron, and Evan married Hannah Beynon at Aberaeron in March 1913, the couple setting up home at the Prince of Wales Inn. Evan worked at the Pembrey Ordnance Factory during the war, and was killed there on 29 March 1916, aged 26. Evan is not commemorated by the CWGC, so nothing further is yet known.
Griffith Lewis, Master, Mercantile Marine. Griffith was born at Aberayron in 1871, the son of Mary Lewis. He resided with his wife, Annie Ellen Lewis, at Aldborough, Aberaeron, and was a long serving mariner. At the outbreak of war, Griffith served with the Mercantile Marine as Captain of the SS Oaklands Grange. Griffith died of malarial fever aboard his ship on 21 October 1917, aged 46. He was initially thought to have been buried at sea, but information has recently come to light which shows that his body was brought ashore at Plymouth and taken home for burial in Henfynw Cemetery. He is not a casualty of war, so is not commemorated by the CWGC.
Daniel Edwin Morgans, Ordinary Seaman, Mercantile Marine. Daniel was born in 1899, the son of Edward and Margaret Morgans, of 16, Market Street, Aberaeron. He served with the Mercantile Marine as a seaman aboard the London registered cargo steamer, SS Baykerran. He was just 17 years old when Baykerran was lost, presumed sunk, with all 41 hands whilst en-route from New York for St. Nazaire on 23 January 1918. It was not a war loss, so Daniel is not commemorated by the CWGC.
Henry Loyn Pugh, Second Lieutenant, South Wales Borderers. Henry was born in 1888, the son of Thomas and Mary Pugh, of 7, Alban Square, Aberaeron. Educated at Llandovery prior to the war, Henry was a Councillor, and also a Scoutmaster at Aberaeron prior to his enlistment in the Inns of Court Regiment. He was commissioned into the 3rd Battalion, South Wales Borderers in October 1915. Henry was then attached to the 1st Battalion, South Wales Borderers, which was attached to 3 Brigade, 1st Division, and he arrived in France on 29 August 1916. The Division was on the Somme, and in early September 1916, were in support of the Gloucester’s and Welsh Regiment in the fighting for High Wood. Henry was wounded on 9 September 1916, and evacuated to 36 Casualty Clearing Station at Heilly. Sadly he died of his wounds on 11 September 1916. He was 29 years old, and is buried at Heilly Station Cemetery, Mericourt-L’Abbe, France.
Thomas Gwilym Rees, Second Engineer, Mercantile Marine. Thomas was born in 1885, the son of Joseph and Elizabeth Rees, of 3, Belle Vue Terrace, Aberaeron. He married Mary Morris prior to the war, and the couple resided at Min-afon, Borth-y-Gest, Portmadoc. Thomas served in the Mercantile Marine as an Engineer aboard the SS Paddington, a London registered steamer. On 21 July 1917, she was on route from Cartagena to Britain with Admiralty cargo and passengers, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-96, with the loss of 29 crew. Thomas was among the dead. He was 29 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
David Charles Shepherd, Private, 29862, South Wales Borderers. David was the son of Richard and Jane Shepherd, of Swansea. He married Lydia Ellen Jones, a Drapery Assistant, of Ripon House, Aberaeron, in 1913 and the couple lived at 10, Pell Street, Swansea, where David worked as a despatch clerk to Edwards & Sons, Drapers, Oxford Street. He enlisted at Swansea into the army and was posted to the 11th Battalion, South Wales Borderers, which was attached to 115 Brigade, 38th (Welsh) Division. During December 1915 the division moved to France and moved to the Fleurbaix sector, where it was initiated into trench warfare. During June 1916 the Division marched south to the Somme, and on 7 July 1916 attacked Mametz Wood. The initial attack failed, and it was three days later, on 10 July, that a fresh attack was mounted. After two days of heavy hand to hand fighting within the wood, the Germans withdrew, and the battered Welshmen moved via Hebuterne to Boesinghe, on the Yser Canal, where it remained until launching its attack on Pilckem Ridge on 31 July 1917. The 15th Welsh remained in the line, and also took part in the Battle of Langemarck. David was killed in action at Langemarck on 23 August 1917, aged 29. He has no known grave and is commemorated on the Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium. David is not commemorated at Aberaeron, although his widow returned to live there after his death.
Arthur Thomas Williams, Private, 95511, Middlesex Regiment. Arthur was the son of David Williams, of Stratheaton, Aberaeron. He had lived in London for several years prior to the war, with his wife and three children, and worked as a station house manager for the London Fire Brigade. Arthur was attached to the London Brigade workshops early in the war, before being posted to France, and joined the 1st Battalion, Middlesex Regiment in September 1918. Arthur was wounded the following month, and sent to the base hospital at Rouen, where he died of his wounds on 30 October 1918. He is buried in St. Sever Cemetery Extension, Rouen, France.
William Williams, Lamps, Mercantile Marine. William was the son of David and Jane Williams (nee Davies), of Aberaeron. He had moved from the town many years prior to the war, serving with the Mercantile Marine aboard the S.S. Beatrice, which was owned by Cleeves Western Anthracite, Cardiff. On 20 July 1917 Beatrice was en-route from Penarth to Honfleur with a cargo of coal when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UC-47, with the loss of eleven lives. William was 57 years old when he died that day and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
World War Two, 1939-1945
John Aeron Davies, Merchant Navy. John was born at Aberaeron in 1908, the son of James and Sarah Davies. He resided at 11, Tabernacle Street, Aberaeron prior to the war. John worked at Middlesbrough and was killed during the last air raid to hit the town, whilst working at The Dock Cut at Middlesbrough on 18 March 1943. No more is known of him, as he is not commemorated by the CWGC.
John Islwyn Davies, Chief Steward, Merchant Navy. Islwyn was born at Norland, Aberaeron in 1912. He served for many years prior to the war with the Merchant Navy, and married Mildred Mary Salmon, of Trefine, Pembrokeshire in 1941. John served aboard the S.S. Chulmleigh, a London registered cargo steamer. Chulmleigh had entered service in 1938 and at the outbreak of war was at Colón, Panama, and returned to the UK via the Caribbean. She carried out several long-haul voyages over the next two years, sailing with various convoys in the Atlantic. In September 1942 She moved to Iceland to continue supply work to Russia, in the Arctic Convoys. On 30 October 1942 Chulmleigh left Iceland and headed into the Barents Sea, but ran aground at South Cape, on the main island of Spitzbergen. She was abandoned after being attacked by German aircraft, so her crew took off in her lifeboats, hoping to reach safety at the Norwegian base at Barentsburg. While the crew were trying to row for safety, their ship was torpedoed and sank by the German submarine U-625. Conditions were terrible for the men and they boats became separated when they got caught in a storm on 8 November. John died of hypothermia aboard his lifeboat on 10 November 1942. Two days later some of the survivors reached the safety of Barentsburg. John was 30 years-old when he died. He was buried at sea by his fellow crewmen and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Thomas Irwin Davies, Leading Aircraftman, 930988, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Thomas was the son of Richard M. Davies and Hannah Francis Davies, of Aeron Belle, Aberaeron. He served with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. After the invasion of occupied Europe, Thomas was posted to the B.S.R.U. (Base Signals and Radar Unit). On 7 November 1944, Thomas was among a large party of RAF servicemen who, along with trucks and supplies for the RAF in Belgium, were aboard the Landing Ship LST-420. It was unable to enter the port of Ostend because of a severe storm and the captain decided to return to England, but hit and mine, split in two, and sank. Fourteen officers and 224 other ranks were lost in the disaster, with only 31 men saved. Thomas was among the dead, and is buried at Blankenberge Town Cemetery, Belgium.
Evan Evans, Sailor, Merchant Navy. Evan was the son of Thomas and Margaret Evans, of Llyswen Mill, Aberaeron. He served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Empire Tower, a London registered cargo ship. Early in 1943 Empire Tower joined convoy XK-2 from Gibraltar to the UK. On 5 March 1943 the German submarine U-130 attacked the convoy and sank Empire Tower, SS Fidra, SS Ger-y-Bryn and SS Trefusis. Empire Tower sank within a minute, with the loss of her Captain, six gunners and 35 crew. Evan was among the dead. He was 31 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
James Harold Evans, Junior Engineer Officer, Merchant Navy. James was the son of John and Mary Evans, of Aberystwyth. He lived with his wife, Minnie Evans, at Maesglas, Aberaeron prior to the war, and served with the Merchant Navy aboard the MV Lady Glanely, a Cardiff registered Motor Vessel. On 2 December 1940, she was on route from Vancouver via Panama and Bermuda to London, carrying a cargo of wheat and lumber, when she was torpedoed and sank by the German submarine U-101. The Master, 30 crewmen and a gunner were lost on the sinking. James was among the dead. He was 37 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Alban Lewis Gwynne, CB, Commander, Royal Navy. Alban was born in 1881, the son of Alban Thomas Jones Gwynne and Mary Edith Gwynne (nee Harford), of Monachty, Cardiganshire. He married Ruby Bond in 1914, and served throughout the Great War with the Royal Navy. During the Second World War Alban was serving aboard HMS Southern Princess. Little can be traced about the ship, but Alban died on active service on 5 July 1942, aged 62, and was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium, England. Alban does not look to be commemorated locally, as he had sold the Monachty Estate prior to the war, and had moved to London.
William Ewart Herbert, Master, Merchant Navy. William was born at Aberaeron in 1895, the son of Evan and Jane Herbert. He resided with his wife, Margaret Mary Herbert, at Gwynlys, Llannon, Aberaeron prior to the war, and served with the Merchant Navy, as Master of the SS Stangarth, a London registered steamer. On 16 March 1942, Stangarth was on her maiden voyage, when she was hit by a torpedo from the German submarine U-504, and sank northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico. William was 47 years old when he went down with his ship, and he is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Allen Stanford Jones, Sergeant, 530722, Royal Air Force. Allen was the son of Timothy James Jones and Evelyn Lucy Jones, of Newholme, Aberaeron. He served with 228 Squadron, Royal Air Force. The Squadron was a flying boat squadron in Coastal Command that was equipped with the Short Sunderland. In May 1939 the squadron moved to Alexandria, but at the outbreak of war the squadron returned to Pembroke Dock. Detachments were based at Invergordon and at Sullom Voe, and the squadron flew patrols between Scotland and Norway. In June 1940 Italy entered the war, and in response 228 Squadron returned to the Mediterranean. Most of the squadron was based in Egypt, a detachment operated from Gibraltar, and the squadron used Malta as an advanced base. In October the squadron’s maintenance base was moved from Pembroke Dock to Malta, where it remained until March 1941, carrying out fleet reconnaissance duties and anti-submarine patrols. Allen was killed at St. Paul’s Bay, Malta on 7 March 1941, during one of the many German air raids on the Island. He was 22 years old, and is buried at Malta (Capuccini) Naval Cemetery.
David Horace Jones, Warrant Officer (Pilot), 1056939, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. David was the son of Captain John T. Jones and Catherine J. Jones, of 3, Queen Street, Aberaeron. David enlisted into the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and trained as a pilot before being posted to No. 1697 (Air Despatch Letter Service) flight. On 12 November 1944 David was flying Hurricane IIc, Serial PZ773 from Dijon to Le Bourget when he became caught up in poor weather and crashed into trees on high ground near Molay, killing him instantly. David was 28 years old, and is buried at Choloy War Cemetery, Meurthe-et-Moselle, France.
Christopher David Lewis, Master, Merchant Navy. Christopher was the son of Owen and Sarah Peers Lewis. He lived with his wife, Belva Margaret Williams Lewis, at The Mount, Llanon prior to the war, and served in the Merchant Navy as Master of the SS Stanburn, a London registered steamer. On 29 January 1940, Stanburn was south-east of Flamborough Head, when she was attacked by a German Stuka dive-bomber, and was struck by three bombs, which sank her. Reports stated that around twenty survivors took to the life boats, but were machine-gunned by the Stuka. Christopher, and twenty-five of his crew were killed in the attack, there were only three survivors. Four bodies were later washed ashore, one being identified as Christopher. He was 40 years old, and was buried at Llansantffread (St. Bridget) Churchyard, Ceredigion.
John Harold Lewis, Third Officer, Merchant Navy. John was the son of Harold and Elizabeth Lewis, of Melbourne, Aberaeron. He served with the Merchant Navy, aboard the MV Corbis, a London registered tanker. On 18 April 1943, she was on route from Abadan for Table Bay, carrying a cargo of 13,100 tons of diesel oil and 50 tons of aviation spirit, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-180. Fifty of her crew of sixty were killed, whilst some got away in a lifeboat. John survived the sinking of his ship, but was sadly drowned when his lifeboat capsized on 29 April 1943, 11 days later. John was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Thomas William Lloyd, Trooper, 14497632, Royal Armoured Corps. Thomas was the son of John and Ann Lloyd, of 8, Water Street, Aberaeron. He served with the Royal Armoured Corps. Nothing further is yet known of Thomas’s service, but he died at Swansea on 25 January 1944, aged just 18. Thomas is buried at Henfynyw (St. David) Churchyard, Ceredigion.
Evan Samuel Morgan, Able Seaman, P/JX 252993, Royal Navy. Evan was born on 22 November 1906, the son of Daniel James and Jane Morgan, of Gwel-y-Don, Aberaeron. He married Violet Winifred Laura Pearce, of Stanmore, Middlesex, in 1932. Evan served with the Royal Navy during the war, and had been attached to HMS Excellent II. He was killed during the landings at Augusta, Sicily on 29 July 1942, aged 37. Evan served as Sydney for some reason, and is commemorated under that name on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Hampshire.
Evan Lewis Williams, Able Seaman, Merchant Navy. Evan was the son of Evan and Sarah Williams, of Aberaeron. Prior to the war he lived with his wife, Margaret Jane Williams, at 18, Tabernacle Street, Aberaeron. Evan served with the Merchant Navy aboard the MV Kolchis, a Greek registered Motor Vessel. Kolchis departed from Sorel, on the St Lawrence River in Canada with a cargo of grain and formed up with Convoy SC13 which departed Sydney, Cape Breton, Canada on 22 November 1940. The convoy sailed straight into an Atlantic storm and Kolchis, now a straggler from the convoy, foundered and sank on 23 November 1940 with the loss of all 23 on board. (Kolchis was previously thought to have been torpedoed by the German submarine U-123 on 22 November 1940). Evan was 37 years old when he died aboard Kolchis that day, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.
Ivan Cooper Williams, Ordinary Telegraphist, P/JX 299248, Royal Navy. Ivan was born on 12 July 1921, the son of William Lewis Williams, Master Mariner and Margaret Bennett Williams, of Belle Vue Bungalow, Aberaeron. He served with the Royal Navy, and was based at HMS Drake, the Royal Naval Base at Plymouth. Ivan became ill whilst serving in Plymouth and was hospitalised where he was diagnosed as suffering from tuberculosis. He died of tuberculosis at Aberaeron on 13 September 1943. Ivan was 22 years old, and is buried at Henfynyw (St. David) Churchyard, Ceredigion.