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WAR MEMORIES
This area of the site is in rememberance of all the service men and women from Ashburton who lost their lives in two world wars and to keep their memories alive through the stories of those that lived through them.

Introduction
War Memorial
Remembrance Sunday 2011
A quiet pilgrimage to Normandy
War Veterans

 


War Veterans

We are gradually adding a list of local people with a brief history of their services during WWII. If you have a personal account of war and would like to see your story added to this area of the site please contact the Town Clerk, John Germon at townclerk@ashburton.org or call him directly on 01364 652142.

Click the links below to go straight to that entry

1. J Parnell 1939-1945 - now living in Canada
2. Sergeant Major Henry Bradford (MiD), 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment
3. Cpl John Henry Yolland MM + Bar (MiD), 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment
4. John (Jumbo) German, 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment
5. Ron Jones RAF Bomber Command
6. Corp Frederick John Routley 1st Devon Reg
7. Cpl Ellen Coventry Simpson RAF
8. Sgt William Charles Bowen 5th Devonshire Regt
9. Pte W H Smerdon Devonshire Regt
10. W.O Cl 2. F G Routley
11. Pte W Routley Devonshire Regt
12. Pte C.A.H. Woods (2nd Dorset Regt)
13. Pte G.E Stone (5th Devons)
14. H.G.Bradford A.B.R.N (Henry Bradford’s Father)
15. Shane Hawkins (Henry Bradford’s Nephew)
16. F/L Peter Burden
17. Francis William Ryall
 

1. J Parnell now living in Canada 1939-1945

 
Star. Atlantic Star. Africa Star and Clasp. Pacific Star. Italy Star. 1941-1945. Russian Convoy Medal 1939-45 Defence Medal. 1939-1945 War Medal. Brief account of Royal Naval service. 1938, left Ashburton Primary School and joined Royal Naval School at Holbrook. [RHS]. Joined RN Establishment at HMS St George, Isle of Man. Qualified as Boy Telegraphist and joined Battleship HMS Duke of York, at Scapa Flow.
J Parnell in uniform
Involved in Russian convoys, first one being the ill-fated PQ 17, where many ships of the convoy were lost. Aboard Duke of York during the sinking the German battleship "Scharnhorst at the North Cape. Loaned to British cruiser HMS Berwick in the Atlantic as a Leading Telegraphist. Returned to Duke of York for Force "H" landings in North Africa. Drafted to HMS Golden Hind in the Pacific.

[Australia] Injured and lost the sight of my right eye. Landed in Australian hospital, then returned to UK. Sent to Belfast, N Ireland for installation of Royal Naval radio station. Drafted to HMS Drake at Plymouth and there demobbed. Invalided out due to the loss of sight right eye.
On being demobbed, returned to Ashburton and employed at Ashburton Umber mine until draft came through to join Government Radio Reserch Foreign Office at Barnet Hants. Joined Diplomatic Wireless Service. Resigned and came to Canada in 1952 and joined Canadian Pacific Telecommunications as Testing and Regulating Chief. Retired in 1956.

2. Sergeant Major Henry Bradford (MiD), 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment

Henry Bradford Medals

3. Cpl John Henry Yolland MM + Bar (MiD), 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment

John Yolland Medals

4. John (Jumbo) German, 5th Btn Devonshire Regiment

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

5. Ron Jones RAF Bomber Command

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

6. Corp Frederick John Routley 1st Devon Reg

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

7. Cpl Ellen Coventry Simpson RAF

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

8. Sgt William Charles Bowen 5th Devonshire Regt

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

9. Pte W H Smerdon Devonshire Regt

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

10. W.O Cl 2. F G Routley

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

11. Pte W Routley Devonshire Regt

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

12. Pte C.A.H. Woods (2nd Dorset Regt)

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

13. Pte G.E Stone (5th Devons)

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

14. H.G.Bradford A.B.R.N (Henry Bradford’s Father)

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

15. Shane Hawkins (Henry Bradford’s Nephew)

John (Jumbo) Germon Medals

16. F/L Peter Burden

F/L Peter Burden Service detail. Two tours in Coastal Command, first in North Sea, South Western approaches, North Western approaches, West Africa. Including Photographic Reconnaissance over Vichy French Africa. Second tour in the Mediterranean and Atlantic from Gibraltar and the Azores. Third tour in Transport Support Command Airborne Operations at D Day, Arnhem and the Rhine interspersed with military transport up to forward landing strips and casualty evacuation.
F/L Peter Burden

17. Francis William Ryall

Francis William Ryall who was born and lived most of his life in Ashburton. His grandson understands that he fought in WW1, both in France/Belgium and in the Gallipoli campaign where he was wounded. He also believes that he had a training role with the TA during WW2. According to the engravings on the edge of his medals he was a private during WW1 but appears to have reached the rank of sergeant probably with the TA during WW2. The medals are from L to R:- British War Medal 1914 - 1918 1914 - 1918 Victory Medal Territorial Force War Medal 1914 - 1918 British War Medal 1939 - 1945 Territorial Army Efficiency Medal WW1 Territorial Army Efficiency Medal WW2. The photograph was probably taken during WW2 along with his youngest son Dennis together with his medals and cap badge.
F/L Peter Burden
 
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With special thanks to John Germon and Peter Webb for their supply of content without which this site would not have been produced.