Arlingham in many ways is the end of the road. The dead-end before road meets river. In former times, it would have been a quick ferry boat over the water to Newnham on the other side of the river Severn, but now few traverse the river as they once did. It now makes a peaceful drive to the end or a leisurely peddle-out on the bicycle as you wander the peninsula which is almost surrounded on three sides by the river. Newnham is now a forty minute drive via the Severn Bridge or Gloucester. Oh how times have changed.
St Mary’s church is a pretty lime-washed building. Old. As so many usually are. But this church perhaps harks back to those times when Arlingham was full of river people, traders and merchants. The churchyard is scattered with the stylish designs of the 18th and 19th century, and now the 20th and 21st century graves are tucked adrift around the back, as the land dips down the river level.
On a pretty gravestone, memorials to the children of parents that once loved them. Sydney who died at Peshawar, Kashmir in 1902, Beatrice a daughter and a soldier son who died in the Great War.
Also of Pte E. Hayward, Worcestershire Regiment
Son of Daniel and Esther Hayward
Who was wounded at the Dardanelles
And died at Malta November 21st 1915
Aged 30 years
Edwin was born in 1885 in Arlingham where he grew up, his father Daniel a gardener and his mother Esther. In the last census before the war in 1911, he’s working the land as a farm labourer in Ashleworth, a little village north of Gloucester up the river.
The local newspaper proudly stated that Edwin enlisted in Gloucester on June 21st 1915, as war seemed certain to rage on. Then in December, amongst a list too long to seem read, Edwin’s name is listed with those lost to the war Edwin died on November 21st 1915 in Malta from wounds received in action at Gallipoli. The plan by the British to open up a secondary front and push up the eastern Mediterranean and take the Ottoman forces out of the war. The attack on that particular peninsula was problematic from the start, difficult conditions, formidable opponents, disease, sickness, exposure… the list went on. Men, like Edwin, went into action from beach-heads into mountainous, crag-ridden valleys. It was little wonder, casualties became numerous. The Commonwealth forces would be pulled out in December 1915; with little learned. Just too late for Edwin.
He was buried at Pieta Military Cemetery in Malta. Those who were wounded or ill due to sickness were transported to Malta and Gozo in the Mediterranean for treatment at military hospitals there. Many died. Thousands were treated.
It seems crueller then to understand that Edwin reached Gallipoli on the 29th October 1915; his death less than a month later demonstrates just how dangerous the Gallipoli campaign was. From one peninsula to another, his memory remains here at Arlingham.
Frederick James and Lionel Greenway
I don’t think I shall ever get used to brother, or fathers and sons, or sisters, mother, cousins dying at war. The same war. Different wars. It seems too close, too painful, too much for one family to bear. At Arlingham, on a family memorial to the Greenways. Two brothers remembered for their actions in war service.
Also of Lionel Greenway
Who died from wounds received in
Action in Mesopotamia
January 26th 1917 aged 22 years
Also of Frederick James Greenway
Who was killed in action in France
July 17th 1917 aged 32 years
All sons of
Arthur and Sarah Ann Greenway
Their father Arthur was a bricklayer, and Frederick James was the eldest was working as a bricklayer as well probably helping his father, whilst Lionel worked as farm labourer in the last census before the war in 1911.
Lionel died from wounds received in action in Mesopotamia. Amara, where Lionel is buried, was a hospital centre for those wounded in the Middle Eastern campaign, now in modern-day Iraq. On the night of January 24th/25th 1917, the 9th Worcesters were preparing to attack on the Hai Salient in Mesopotamia in conjunction with the 7th Glosters. It was part of a much bigger plan to push back forces along the river Tigris to re-take Kut, which had been the site of a terrible military failure in 1916. The 9th Worcesters lost many men in this the Battle of the Hai Salient. Men had dug trenches to get close to the enemy, but conditions were tough and disease rife. Lionel was one of those Worcesters who died as a consequence of this action.
Whilst his younger brother Lionel was fighting in the Middle East, Frederick James was being wounded on the Western Front. Like his brother, Frederick had enlisted in Dursley.
His elder brother Frederick was killed in action on the 17th July 1917 and was buried at Roclincourt, a little village just outside Arras. The 12th ‘Bristol’s Own’ Glosters had just returned to the trenches near Roclincourt when they were heavily shelled on the night of the 17th July, Frederick was killed then. He had been married in 1914, and left a wife grieving his loss as well as his family.
William Henry Greenway
Just a few houses down, was another part of the Greenway family. William Henry Greenway was the son of George Greenway, a builder. He had been married since 1903 and enlisted in May 1916. He was posted overseas in January 1917 to France.
The 2nd/5th Glosters were in the trenches around Bihecourt having followed up the Germans that had retreated to the Hindenburg Line. They made continued efforts to break holes in the German wire despite repeated shelling and counter attacks. William was killed in action on April 7th 1917. He is remembered at Arlingham:
William H. Greenway
Who fell in France 1917
It is on the grave belonging to his wife’s family.
The loss of these three men from some a tight local community must have been keenly felt.
These are the men who never returned from the Great War whose memorials lie at Arlingham in Gloucestershire:
Private Edwin Hayward
DoB 1885 Arlingham, Gloucestershire DoD 21st November 1915 Malta age 30
23142 4th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment
Buried: Pieta Military Cemetery, Malta
Private Lionel Greenway
DoB 1894 Arlingham, Gloucestershire DoD 26th January 1917 Mesopotamia age 22
31411 9th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment
Buried: Amara War Cemetery, Iraq
Private Frederick James Greenway
DoB 1884 Gloucester DoD 17th July 1917 France age 32
202660 12th Service Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment
Buried: Roclincourt Military Cemetery, France
Private William Henry Greenway
DoB 1878 Arlingham, Gloucestershire DoD April 7th 1917 France age 39
202168 2nd/5th Gloucestershire Regiment
Buried: Vadencourt British Cemetery, Maissemy, France