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Local Heroes - Your streets were their streets Local Heroes - Your streets were their streets

The names of 197 local men who lost their lives in World War I are
inscribed on the bells of the Memorial Community Church in Plaistow. They are our local heroes

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Arthur George Smith

Sidcot, Somerset (probably) - c 1881
France and Flanders - 19 December 1916
Killed in action
Served in
British War Medal & Victory Medal
82 London Road, Plaistow

Arthur George's story

The bell has Gunner G A Smith (rather than Rifleman A G Smith). Assuming this is the right person, he enlisted in March 1916 and served in the 17th Battalion K.R.R.C. as Rfm  R/30457. He was killed in action on 19 December 1916. In December the Battalion was in the area of Ypres (Flanders) taking its routine turn in the trenches.  No major British offensive was made during the month so it is likely that Pte Smith was unfortunately killed by enemy gunfire. Thanks to Barry Langridge for this information about the KRRC.

And thanks to Nicola Holmes, whose great-aunt Nora married Stanley Smith, Arthur and Evelyn’s son. She has provided the photos and the following biographical details:

Arther George Smith family photo“The family photo is of Arthur and his wife Evelyn and their son (known as Stan but I think this was his middle name) who was eight years old at the time, so I think it was around 1913. The picture of his grave was taken by Stan but I don’t know when.  The piece at the bottom says, “Forever remembered, Eve”.

I also found an indenture dated 1898, relating to Arthur George Smith.  He became an apprentice butcher.  It says his father Thomas was of ‘Sidcot’ – I think this is near Taunton in Somerset.   I know that eventually Arthur and Evelyn moved to Plaistow.   Their son Stan married Nora Doran and they moved to Stokenham in Devon.  Arthur George Smith’s widow Evelyn lived with them,  and she died in 1975.  I met her when I visited Nora and Stan in the 1970s.”

Arthur George Smith MedallionArthur George Smith certificate

George Arthur Smith Gravestone

Service Number
Essex Farm Cemetery, Belgium
No photos found for Arthur George Smith

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One comment

  1. nicola Holmes
    March 6, 2016
    2:57 pm

    I believe my Great Aunt Nora was married to Arthur George Smith’s son Stanley. I have a copy of the certificate sent with his war medals (from Winchester in 1921). I met his wife Evelyn when I was a child.
    His son Stanley was cremated and his remains are in Stokenham Church in Devon.

    I visited Essex Farm Cemetery in Belgium yesterday without knowing he was there…

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