[From Manx Quarterly, #28 1922]
The war memorial tablet erected in Arbory Parish Church to commemorate the names of the sixteen men of the parish who fell in the Great War was unveiled on Thursday afternoon, October by the Lieut.-Governor. His Excellency delivered an eloquent address to a congregation that filled every seat in the edifice. The Lord Bishop, was also present, and was to have given an address but his health was such that his medical advisers instructed him to abandon the idea. When he walked up the aisle he looked wan and ill, and one felt that it must have been a ordeal for him to sit throughout the proceedings. The service itself was conducted by the Vicar, the Rev. F. W Subbs B.D., the other ministers present being the Revs Canon Leece, W. R. Cannell, J. Graham, and W. J. Hannam.
The service opened with the hymn, "O God our help " (Tune, " St. Ann") followed by prayers by the Vicar. The first lesson (Joshua i. 5-9) was read by the Rev. J. Graham (Primitive Methodist) and the second (Revelation vii, 9-17) by the Rev W. J. Hannam (Wesleyan Methodist). Psalm xxiii and the Deus Misereatur were also sung.
At the request of the Captain of the Parish (Mr J. T. Cooil), his Excellency unveiled the memorial, which was inscribed as follows:-
To the Glory of God
in honoured memory of the men of this Parish,
who laid down their lives in the Great War, 1914-1918
Edward Cooil,. Ballabeg.
H. Stuart Cooil, Ballabeg.
Charles Costain, Ballabeg.
J. Frederick Costain, Ballabeg.
W. Norman Stubbs, Ballabeg, .
Fletcher Watterson, Ballabeg,
John Curphy, Colby.
Fred Cubbon, Strandhall.
Wilfred J. Corrin, Ronague.
E. Edward Cubbon, Ballakilpheric.
William Faragher, Ballakilpheric.
John Woods, Ballabeg.
Edward Craine, Colby.
Elliot Crellin, Colby.
John H. Watterson, Colby.
Thomas J. Cubbon, Ballakilpheric.
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
After the unveiling had taken place, his Excellency observed that the ceremony in which they were taking part was one that stirred the deepest emotions of everybody. They were paying a tribute of honour and respect to the memory of the sixteen gallant men whose names they saw engraved on the tablet, sixteen gallant men who came forward in the prime of their strength and manhood, when their country was in peril and needed her sons. What thoughts arose in their minds as they looked at the tablet! Thoughts of the dauntless valour of these men, and their splendid fortitude in the midst of war's perils and hardships. Thoughts of the splendid and unselfish sacrifice they, made of their lives to ensure the safety of the country which they loved. When they thought of these things their hearts swelled with gratitude for what those men had done, and with pride that they themselves belonged to a nation which reared such gallant men. Their hearts, too, would go out to those relatives and others who held these men dear, and who felt a great and terrible loss. They could only trust that time would soften their sorrow, and their sense of loss. It would afford them some consolation to know that the names of these men would be revered and respected for generations and generations to come by their own countrymen. When looking at the tablet they would also rejoice that those gallant men who had been the comrades of the brave sixteen whose names they were commemorating were with them to-day. These men had shared the same dangers and perils. Some bore honourable scars, others, more fortunate, had come out unscathed. They would trust that these would be spared to them for many years, and that they would be an example to the rising generation and an inspiration in unselfishness and in the value of patriotism. They would also hope that these men would ever remember their dead comrades, and order their lives accordingly, and scorn anything then would besmirch the honour of those who had sacrificed their all. These men had left us all a great heritage, and the preservation of that heritage lay in living useful and unselfish lives. If future generations of that parish looked at the monument, and took heed of the lessons it taught, the sacrifice that had been made by the sixteen men would not have been made in vain.
The Bishop then came forward, and dedicated the tablet in the following terms:-" In the faith of Jesus Christ, we dedicate this tablet to the glory of God. and in memory of the men connected with this parish who fell in the Great War. In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.-Amen."
After a, pause for silent prayer and remembrance, Rev. Canon Leece said that it would be a matter for regret that the Bishop's health did not permit him giving one of his touching and eloquent addressees. His Lordship was no less grieved, but his medical advisers had forbidden him to gives an address. His Lordship had suffered greatly during the last few months, but they were extremely thankful and pleased to see him back with them again, and, at least, so far recovered as to be able to attend this gathering.
The 'hymn " For all the Saints, who from their labours rest," to the tune of " Pro omnibus sanctus " (Barnby), followed, after which the Bishop pronounced the Benediction.
The service concluded with the singing of the National Anthem.
The tablet is the work of Mr Charles Cubbon, of Hope-street, Castletown.
At Rose Mount Wesleyan Church, Douglas, on Sunday, Dec. 11th, the ceremony was performed-of unveiling a bronze tablet which has just been erected in the vestibule of the church in memory of twelve young men connected with the church and Sunday-school who gave their lives in the Great War. The tablet was made by Messrs Williams, Gamon, and Co., of Chester, from a design drawn by Mr J. F. Douglas. There was a remarkably large congregation, and the company of Girl Guides which has been newly formed in connection with the church, added an official touch to the proceedings. The officiating minister was the Rev. Arthur T. Burbridge, B.A., Who afterwards discoursed on the revelations of the noble in human nature which had come through the war, and appropriate prayers were said and hymns sung. The church choir rendered Mr Clement A. Moore's beautiful anthem, " What are these?' and a duet, " The Psalm of Life " (Richd Knight), was given by Messrs John Christian and Fred Craine. At the close of the unveiling ceremony, the "Reveille' and the " Last Post.' were sounded by Mr Town Lewin.
The names on the tablet are:-
W. J. COWIN,
W. E. SAYLE,
R. A. SAYLE
H. H. COWIN
E. W. CAINE,
G. L. MITCHELL,
S. G. ASPELL,
R. F. DOUGLAS,
H. F. GOLDSMITH,
F. K. LOONEY.
The Parish Memorial to the men of Ballaugh, who fell in the Great War, was dedicated on Thursday, November 10th. A large assembly, numbering about 500 people gathered at the Parish Church for service in church at 2-30 p.m. This service consisted of a shortened form of Evening Prayer, taken by the Rector; Canon Quine reading the lesson, and the Venerable the Archdeacon, the Revs. A. E. Clarke, M. W. Harrison, Dr. Devall, and J. A. Cooil being also present. At the conclusion of the Prayers, the " Dead March" was feelingly played by Miss Gawne, the organist. A procession being then formed, consisting of the choir, children, clergy, forty relatives, and forty ex-service men moved from the church to, the memorial erected on a site between the churchyard gate and the church door. Canon Quine's dedication hymn, given out by Mr W. Corlett, was then sung.
Mr J. F. Crellin, M.C., unveiled the memorial, reading the inscription on the shaft of the Cross, " To the Glory of God, and in Memory of the Men of the Parish who fell in the Great War, 1914-1918," and the names of the fallen, viz. :-
John James Boyde, Australian Imperial Forces.
Robert Nelson Boyde, King's Liverpool Regiment.
Robert Alfred Boyde, Army Service Corps.
Charles Alfred Cannell, Lancashire Fusiliers.
Charles Henry Lace Clague, Cheshire Regiment.
Charles Henry Cleator, Loyal North Lancs.
John James Corkish, King's Liverpool Regiment.
Ernest Corlett, Royal Scots.
Thomas Sayle Corlett Australian Imperial Forces
Ernest Corkill Dragoon Guards.
Thomas Fargher, King's Own Scottish Borderers.
Thomas Patrick Finn, Army Service Corps.
George William Kermode, King's Liverpool Regiment.
Harold Robertson Kissack, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry.
Walter Alfred Kneale, King's Liverpool Regiment.
David Lawrence, Honourable Artillery Co.
Robert Vondy Wade, 1st London Royal Rifles.
William Wade, Sherwood Foresters.
The Venerable the Archdeacon dedicated the memorial, and gave an appropriate address.
Wreaths were placed by the relatives, by the ex-soldiers, Mr Frederick Caley, M.M., representing them; by the schoolchildren and by the committee. The " Last Post " being sounded, and benediction said, this imposing ceremony came to a close.
The Cross, the dimensions of which were drawn out by Mr A. Knox, was erected by Mr Edward Christian, of Ramsey. It stands 16 feet high. The marble shaft, surmounted by the Cross, rises from a block of red stone, on which is inscribed the manes of the fallen on panels of marble. This block rests an three steps of red stone. The whole structure is noble and beautiful - a fitting Parish Memorial to the fallen parish men.
The parish committee consisted of Messrs J. Wade, R. Corlett. S. D. Jelley, John Teare, J. T. Quayle, J. Quayle, P. Mylcraine, T. H. Kneen (treasurer), J. T. Teare (hon. secretary), and the Rev. T. R. Kneale (chairman).
indicated in our last issue, a war memorial, the gift of Mr J. L. Goldie-Taubman, M.L.C., which has been erected on Douglas Head, was unveiled and dedicated on Armistice Day, 11th Nov. The site is just below the Douglas Head . on a grassy space above the steep cutting at which the electric tram commences its journey along the Marine Drive. The memorial is constructed of red sandstone, and stands 28½ feet high. The shaft and runic cross weigh nine tons, while the base, which is made of rustic limestone from Castletown, weighs no less than forty tons. The arms of the cross measure, end to end, 6 feet 3 inches. In the centre of the shaft, the words, " The Great War, 1914," are inscribed. On each, side near the base, a slate tablet is let into panels. The inscription on one tablet reads: " This monument is erected by John Leigh Goldie-Taubman, of the Nunnery."
The inscription on the other tablet reads: " To the chivalry of the men of this Island and all who died for us. A token of profound admiration and deep gratitude."
" These leave a notable example to such as be young, to die willingly and courageously."-(II Macc. iv. 28.)
The unveiling ceremony was performed by the Lieut.-Governor, and the dedication by the Rev. H. S. Taggart, M.A., Vicar of St. Matthew's, Douglas, who was assisted in the conduct of the service by the Rev. T. A. Kynaston, of the Nunnery Private Chapel, and the Rev. Walter J. Karran.
Mr Goldie-Taubman, before requesting the Governor to perform the unveiling ceremony, expressed his opinion that Douglas Head was a very appropriate location for the memorial, because Douglas Head was the last point of their native land seen by Manxmen departing for the war.
The Governor paid an eloquent tribute to the memory of the fallen men, and also remarked that there were those who considered that a memorial in that pleasure ground was out of place; but he disagreed with that. Those who came to sit round would gaze upon the memorial, and regard it as an emblem of victory and sacrifice, and their minds would be elevated. He hoped that the time was not far distant when that beautiful headland would be restored to its natural beauty, when all that was vulgar and unsightly would be cleared away, and that it might become a real pleasure ground, where visitors and residents might seek pleasure and refreshment.
The special form of service was reverently followed by those present, and the ceremony was brought to an end by the sounding of the " Last Past."
A very different atmosphere from that which usually prevails was most discernible at the Post Office on Sunday, Dec. 18th. As in the busiest days of summer the room was packed to its utmost, but instead of seeing people jostling against one another in an unruly scramble to purchase a stamp, one saw a concourse of bareheaded people standing in reverential silence and gazing at a bronze tablet on the eastern wall, a tablet which had beep erected by the members of all branches of the Post Office Service in the Isle of Man as a testimony to the sacrifice and service of their colleagues in the Great War. Members of the Service were present almost to a man, and conspicuous among those of the outside public was the Mayor of Douglas (Councillor T. G. Kelly) and Scout Master T. Fisher.
The task of unveiling the memorial tablet was most impressively carried out by the Postmaster (Mr R. H. Nicholls), who preceded this function by an address, the text of which is as follows:-
We are all aware of the object for which we have been invited to assemble here to-day, and the large gathering testifies to the great sympathy extended to the relatives of our late colleagues who made the supreme sacrifice during the Great War, and it may be of interest. to mention that out of a total staff of 130 eligible men 100 joined up and went to the Front. Unfortunately six of the total from the Island lost their lives. These were attached to the Post Office and Engineering Departments. Those engaged in the Post Office did not always escape criticism, but there was one part of the activities of that great department of the State which was a pride to us all. It was the part the men played during the War, and it is very doubtful if the public fully realize what the Post Office did to help to win the War. When it is remembered that the Duke of Wellington at the Battle of Waterloo commanded only 30,000 troops, yet the British Post Office supplied three times that number, and out of the 90,000 postal men of all ranks who sprang to the Colours, 9,000 had given their lives to France and other parts of the War area, and this is a record unequalled by any other organization. The various officials throughout the Island decided to mark in some permanent manner their deep appreciation and regard for those who sacrificed so much for us, and the handsome Memorial on which the names of those who were killed have been inscribed, and also particulars of those who joined the Colours, has been erected. I think you will agree the Committee have been fortunate in their choice of the form of the Memorial, and on behalf of the subscribers I now unveil it, and trust it will always remind us of those who laid down their lives that we eight live in peace, prosperity and security, and whose memory it will permanently record.
The inscription on the tablet, which is the work of Mr A. Knox, is as follows:-
In grateful memory of W. N. Hughes, P. H. Hunter, G. E. Kelly, W. S. Kennaugh, J. Kennedy, J. J. Shimmin. Members of the Staff of the I O.M. Post Office, who gave their lives, and a Testimony to others who fought in the Great War, 1914-1919."
Then followed the dedication which was conducted by the Rev H. S. Taggart, who afterwards gave a short address. Of all the branches of the Civil Service there was not one branch, he said, or department which was of greater utility to the people or one that conspired in a greater degree to the well-being and stability of the State than the Post Office Service. He did not believe, and he said these words with deep conviction and great deliberation, that there any country in the world where that service had been run with greater faithfulness and integrity on the part of its workers, and with greater satisfaction from the view of the public than in our own country. So much then in a few words, to the services Post- Office during the time of peace. But as they had been reminded by the Postmaster Nicholls, when the days of peace gave place to war the Post Office servants proved their eagerness, their readiness and willingness to manifest that same devotion in time of warfare. They bad met there that day to commemorate and honour those men who, in their devotion, had laid down their lives. In those terrible days, which now happily were past, they all desired and they all tried in their several places and in their several stations to do their part in carrying out that task to which their country had set itself. They all had had one common task, one common aim; but with the carrying out of that common task vast numbers of their brethren were called upon to give that which they and all wen valued most highly, their life. "It was as dear to them as life is dear to us; they sacrificed it and we, brethren, have it still. So when we see this memorial to-day and in the coming days, it seems to me that it should always spur us to make the best and fullest use of that life spared to us so that we, by every means in our power, by service and sacrifice, may advance the cause of our country and the human family, in the interests of which they died. I think I may also add these words in closing. We are not likely to do this unless we severally obey the voice of He who came among men about this time, and who still says to men 'Follow Me.' Washed in His blood, encouraged by His example, and strengthened by His presence, we shall live, we shall not work in vain. "
The hymn, "Peace, perfect peace" and prayers followed. After the singing of the hymn, " O God our Help in ages past," a laurel wreath was placed beneath the tablet by Mr R. Hunter, assisted by Sapper W. Moore. Mr Hunter was chosen for this office because his son, Robert Henry, was the first of the six men to fall on the field of battle. The National Anthem was then sung.
Two Boy Scout buglers impressively sounded the " Last Post," and when the final note had died awAy the congregation bowed their heads for a minute in silence. The triumphant "Reveille" was then sounded.