World War l



Many very young men some most definitely younger than they should be to enter the war as can be seen in this group of young men.  These young men are possibly cadets.




The report in the Wolverton Express of 5th September 1913 tells of the sham fight that had taken place at Grafton Regis on the previous Wednesday. The soldiers camps were at Warren Hill and Stacey Hill and it is likely that the soldiers above were on their way to Grafton. A copy of this newspaper report can be seen in the Castlethorpe Village website part of the MK Heritage site, look in people then Castlethorpe at war.

There were ten young men killed in action who came from Yardley Gobion or whose family had moved away from the village but grandparents were still there. They are remembered on the Yardley Gobion War memorial, a stone cross on a square plinth just inside the entrance to the village church, St Leonards.

Rifleman John Charles Lambert .

Rifleman John Charles Lambert

Cpl. Dennis Samuel Atkins or Atkins Q.R. West Surrey Regt. Died in July 1916

Pte. Frederick Adkins or Atkins Oxford & Bucks L.I. Died in May 1917

Pte. Frederick Henry J Bliss 23rd Middlesex Regt. Died in September 1916

Pte. Harrold Cross Northants Regt. Died in November 1915

Pte. Sidney Glenn 6th Northants Regt.

Pte. Alwyn Johnson 8th Batt East Surrey Rgt. Died in August 1917

Pte. Ernest John Lambert 1st Batt. Oxfordshire & Bucks L.I. Died in October 1916

Rifleman John Charles Lambert 12th Batt. London Rgt. Died in November 1917 ( pictured to right hand side.)

Pte. Herbert Harold Sanders or Saunders 13th East Surrey Rgt. Died in November 1917

2nd Lt. Arthur Johnathon Smith 36th Batt. M.G.C. (Infantry) Died in March 1918



Towards the end of World War I Prisoners of war were kept in the now redundant Workhouse, these soldiers pictured here were the guards to these prisoners, including one who married a local girl, he is standing far left. His name is Edwin George Munday.  He married Marjorie Shakeshaft. in 1924.


Believed to be the first memorial service in 1921

Wolverton Express August 25th 1916


A meeting of the Potterspury Military Tribunal was held at the Workhouse Yardley Gobion on Saturday evening. Mr. H. T. F. Weston, J.P. presided and there were also present: Messrs. W. Patterson, S. P. Starsmore, P. F. Ridgeway, J. S. Tapper, O. Harris, J. Bishop and A. Weston; with Mr. J. F. Bliss (Agricultural Representative), Major J. S. Brougham (Military Representative) and the Clerk (Mr. W. Snelgrove).

In all twenty case, the majority renewals, were dealt with. In the first, an Ashton man, unemployed through illness, the wife attended and stated that he complained of his insides and they could not find out what was really the matter with him.

A Member : Is he fit to travel? —

The wife; If he does it knocks him up.

It was elicited that the man was an out-patient of Northampton Hospital, Major Brougham remarked that he seemed in a bad way. — The case was put back for two months.


It was claimed for the head gardener of a Cosgrove landowner, married aged 36, that he was the only one on the premises that understood the acetylene gas plant. —

A member, to the estate agent supporting the claim: Is there no one else on the farm you can get to learn it?

The agent : I asked one man over 60, but he would not touch it, as he was afraid he would get blown up (laughter). —

Major Brougham: If he’s silly enough to light his pipe near it: otherwise there is no danger. —

The tribunal endorsed the military recommendation for exemption until Sept. 30 (final).


A Paulerspury farmer appealed for the renewal of the exemption of a horsekeeper, aged 28, single. Applicant said his farm was just over 200 acres, 90 of which was arable. He should never pretend to go with horses at 70 years of age; he might sit down and milk a cow. —

Major Brougham: You don’t see a single man of that age working on the land in France. —

Mr Bliss: I can’t see why they should not be kept on the land as well as in munitions work. They take these men away and then send you soldiers, engineers who are totally unfit for agricultural work at all. I had a man one day and he left the second. He put the machinery right. —

The Chairman: That’s very handy. —

Mr Bliss (drily): Handy for something. — The question arose as to whether the man should be asked to join the V. T. C.

A member remarked If he worked honest and fair, how could they trot him about with the V.T.C. He went to drill and got back at eleven, and what was he fit for next morning. Really it should not be made a condition for farm hands. For shopkeepers and the like it might do them no end of good. —

On being put it was carried by a majority that he should join the V.T.C. and be exempted a further four months.


Another application for a horsekeeper, single, of Deanshanger was made by the father, with 183 acres, who said he practically managed the farm. In answer to the question he said he had between 70 and 80 acres of grass, and finished his hay a week ago. —

A member: A man told me he had nothing to do but go to Coventry, and he could get as many Irishmen as he wanted (laughter). —

Applicant: They don’t do much if they come (renewed laughter). —

Exemption renewed for four months.


A Deanshanger baker was granted conditional exemption.

A firm of implement makers asked for leave to make a further appeal for a man. —

Application refused.

Messrs.. Dennis Faukner and Alsop, of Northampton, applied to re-open a case of a man whose case had been dismissed by the local tribunal and also by the county tribunal. —

The tribunal decided they had no power to re-open the case.

A wheelwright and a farm labourer on a neighbouring estate were exempted one month and to the 1st November (final) respectively.

In other agricultural claims four and five months were granted.

The adjourned case of a married man apprenticed as a motor mechanic to a Stony Stratford firm, again came up. —

One month (final) was granted.

B. Pittam 2006



Child Parent
Louisa Durrant Fred Durrant
Iris Mary Swain John Swain
John William Swain John Swain
John Charles Key John Charles Key
Stanley John Church Graham Church
Alfred Swain Frederick Swain
Walter George Glenn William Glenn
Ivy Maud Durrant Frederick Durran
Florence Rhoda Glenn William Glenn
Ivy Odell William Odell
Sylvia Church Graham Church
Emily Elizabeth Durrant Fred Durrant
Alfred James Horton Joseph Horton
Sidney Charles Swain Walter Swain
Ernest James Lambert Ernest Lambert
John Odell William Odell
Margaret Phillis Adkins Mr B Adkins
Maud Phyllis Swain John Swain
Elsie Muriel Ratcliffe Arthur Ratcliffe
Thomas Charles Kightly Frederick Kightly
Kathleen Joyce Atkins Joseph Atkins
Robert Nelson Atkins Joseph Atkins
Maurice Swain Frederick J Swain
Joseph Henry Swain Walter Swain
Violet May Evans John Evans
Victor Raymond Swain Fred Swain
Gladys Gertrude Swain John Swain