Epping Remembers

The Royal British Legion in Epping

A new local book, EPPING REMEMBERS is a tribute to the young men of Epping and the surrounding villages who lost their lives in the two World Wars.  The book lists their names, their ages, their Regiments, when they died, where they are commemorated, the names of their parents, and in many cases where they lived.  A lot of the names are recorded on the various local War Memorials, but surprisingly many are not.  Local servicemen took part in some of the greatest battles in recent history. In the First World War Paul Kinnell and Percy Whiting were among the 20,000 British and Commonwealth troops killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme; Walter Chater died on board HMS Queen Mary at the Battle of Jutland;  others lost their lives at Gallipoli, Loos, Cambrai, Ypres and Gaza. In World War 2 Epping men fought and died at Dunkirk, El Alamein, Monte Cassino, in the Normandy landings, the crossing of the Rhine and the war against Japan, while others died in RAF Fighter or Bomber Command or at sea with the Royal and Merchant Navies. how do I obtain the book?

EPPING REMEMBERS also features photographs and memorabilia of the wartime experiences of local people both at home and abroad, plus stories of battles involving people from Epping.   These include the following:

SERVING ABROAD IN WORLD WAR 1

Arthur Trundle’s memorabilia from the Western Front


THE EFFECTS OF THE WAR

The Annual Report of the Epping Literary & Mechanics Institute (now the Hemnall Social Club) for 1917 shows how the Great War was affecting it’s members.


THE BATTLE OF JUTLAND

Epping man Walter Chater lost his life at sea in 1916


THE ACCIDENT-PRONE SUBMARINES

An exercise at sea goes tragically wrong


PREPARING FOR WAR

Rehearsal for war in Epping during the 1937 Coronation celebrations


PRISONER OF WAR FOR 5 YEARS

Joe Williams was captured in France in 1940 and spent the next 5 years in captivity. Unfortunately his family mistakenly received a telegram saying he had been killed in action!


WARTIME NEWS

A number of wartime incidents reported locally


POLICEMEN REMEMBERED

Policemen from Epping and Epping Green are commemorated at Chelmsford.


INTERVIEWED ON BBC TV

Theydon Bois resident Peter Twinn was a tail gunner on Lancaster bombers. He related his experiences on BBC TV’s “Battlefields” in 2001.


SERVING AGAIN

After his service with the Royal Garrison Artillery in World War 1, Arthur Trundle served throughout the Second World War as a Special Constable in Epping


SERVING ABROAD IN WORLD WAR 2

Memorabilia of serving with the RAF in Burma and Malaya


THE GIRLS TRAINING CORPS

Pictures of Epping GTC at Theydon Grove


EPPING’S WARTIME SUBMARINE

HMS Sickle was “adopted” by Epping Rural District Council in 1943


THE ARMY IN EPPING

The Drill Hall in St John’s Road and the Armoury in Hemnall Street


WITNESS TO THE SURRENDER

Alf Davy was one of 10,000 Allied servicemen who witnessed the Japanese surrender in New Guinea in September 1945.


FIFTEEN YEARS IN THE ROYAL NAVY

Arthur Bird was invalided out of the Navy in 1943 after 15 years service. He died in 1947 and is buried in a Commonwealth War Grave in Epping Cemetery.


EPPING’S FIRE BRIGADE IN THE WAR

Pictures of the local Firemen in 1940.


CROSSING THE RHINE VIA HILL HALL

Epping Paratrooper Bill Austin spent the night at a Transit Camp at Hill Hall before heading to Germany


WAR GRAVES IN EPPING

The 17 Commonwealth War Graves in Epping Cemetery.


THE BATTLE OF BARKING CREEK

The RAF’s first case of “friendly fire” 


A TENUOUS CONNECTION

The USS Epping Forest was an American warship in Word War 2.


THE EPPING & DISTRICT BRANCH OF THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION

Early membership cards; Membership application forms; Membership card issued to George Duffell in 1947

It’s history, the Poppy Appeal, battlefield tours and Remembrance Day.


A report from the West Essex Gazette of Friday 7 December 1956. The Poppy Appeal total for that year had reached just under £510. The Appeal for 2002 raised £8,000. The same edition advertised a “Grand Xmas Whist Drive” organised by the Legion at Epping Green School on Tuesday 11 December. A coach was provided from Epping Church


An invitation to join the Legion on the Application Forms

As well as the unveiling of the War Memorial, the 1920’s saw the birth of the Epping & District Branch of the Legion.

AFTER THE GREAT WAR a number of ex-servicemen’s associations were formed. Epping had a branch of the “National Federation of Discharged and Demobilised Sailors and Soldiers”. There was some rivalry between the various organisations until July 1921, when they were amalgamated under the banner of the British Legion (the “Royal” was added in 1971).

It was to be another eight years before a branch was raised in Epping. On Saturday 7 December 1929 over one hundred ex-servicemen met at the Armoury in Hemnall Street (now Epping Sportscentre) and agreed to form what would be known as the Epping & District Branch. The following were elected to serve as Officers of the Branch: Colonel R.F. Wall (President), Colonel W. Simpkins (Chairman), C. Cottis (Vice-Chairman), F. Harknett (Secretary), and H. Fowler (Treasurer).

Since then the Branch has continued to flourish, and in 1979 received a Certificate in recognition of fifty years continuous service to the Royal British Legion.


EPPING REMEMBERS

AVAILABLE NOW
how do I obtain the book?

68 pages, many in full colour for  £5.95

 

50% of profits made from the sale of the book will be donated to the Poppy Appeal


picture courtesy of the Royal British Legion