Thursday, May 28, 2009

In a Country Churchyard

(1) CWGC Headstone of Volunteer Joseph Stuart, Home Guard

(2) St Mary’s Church, Threlkeld, near Keswick, Cumbria
(Originally a ‘Chapel of Ease’ for Greystoke Parish Church)
In this small country Churchyard lie two casualties of WW2
Recently, while researching casualties from the Cleator Moor area of Cumbria I paid a visit to the Cumbrian village of Threlkeld, situated between Keswick and Greystoke. In the recent past Threlkeld had many families involved in farming or mining. But it was also the location of Blencathra Sanatorium. This was where patients from the former county of Cumberland were often sent if they suffered from tuberculosis (TB).

A small number of the WW2 casualties from Cleator Moor had died at the former Blencathra Sanatorium, which was the primary reason for my recent visit to Threlkeld. Patients who died at Blencathra Sanatorium during the war were buried elsewhere – close to their home towns - I did find there were two WW2 casualties from Threlkeld buried in this small country Churchyard – Volunteer Joseph Stuart and Gunner Alfred Tangye.

For additional information click on ‘Comments’ below


Blogger ritsonvaljos said...

Additional information

The first WW2 casualty buried in Threlkeld Churchyard was Gunner Alfred Tangye in December 1941. These are his details, taken from his CWGC citation:

Service Number: 1742990,
Unit: 540 Battery, 88 Searchlight Regiment, Royal Artillery
Age: 33
Died: 14 December 1941
Next of Kin:
Son of Alfred and Elizabeth Jane Tangye, of Threlkeld.

Place of Burial:
THRELKELD (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD, Cumbria (S.E. portion of the churchyard)


The second WW2 casualty buried in Threlkeld Churchyard took place only a few days after the first. Joseph Stuart, a 60 year old Home Guard Volunteer died on 11 January 1942. These are his details, taken from his CWGC citation:

Name: Volunteer JOSEPH STUART
Service Number: None (Home Guard volunteers were not given a number)
Unit: 59th County of Lancaster (P.O.) Battalion, Home Guard
Age: 60
Died: 11 January 1942
Next of Kin:
Son of Thomas and Jane Stuart, of Threlkeld.
Husband of Sarah Stuart, of Keswick.
Buried: THRELKELD (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD (S.E. portion of the churchyard)

There are two things relatively unusual about Joseph Stuart as a WW2 casualty. Firstly, he was serving with the Home Guard at the time. This is the first Home Guard casualty I have ever come across in researching WW2.

Secondly, Joseph Stuart was 60 years old when he died. The only casualties I have previously come across of this age or older have been listed as civilian casualties killed by enemy action such as bombing raids.

Even in a small country churchyard such as Threlkeld lie victims of WW2. There is actually one WW1 casualty also buried in Threlkeld Churchyard: Gunner T.A. Watson, Royal Garrison Artillery (attchd. 47th Agricultural Company, Labour Corps). Gunner Watson died on 14 November 1918, three days after the Armistice.

Thursday, 28 May, 2009  
Blogger ritsonvaljos said...

Home Guard Volunteer Joseph Stuart was the fourth brother to give his life for the cause of freedom during a World War. Three of his brothers - Charles Henry, Thomas and Birkett Stuart - gave their lives on the Western Front during the First World War.

Although Home Guard Volunteer Joseph Stuart is an 'official' CWGC casualty and is buried in Threlkeld Churchyard, for some inexplicable reason his name is not listed on the Threlkeld War Memorial.

For further information about the Stuart family sacrifice during two World Was and the Threlkeld War Memorial click on the following link:
The Fallen Heroes of Threlkeld, Cumbria

Wednesday, 28 December, 2011  

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