Brothers James Norman (1890 – 1918 ) and William Norman (1898 – 1917) lived at 54 Albert Street when their father James enrolled them at North School.
In 1911 James was working as a warehouseman for a toy and fancy good dealer. He married Elizabeth Smith in 1915 in Myland, and in July 1916 they were living in Maida Vale, London. Later, when he joined up he gave his profession as a leather buyer and was a member of the Dressing Case makers and Fancy Trades’ Friendly Society.
James joined the Royal Garrison Artillery in June 1916 in London. He was posted overseas later in the year, departing from Southampton and arriving at Le Havre on 18 November 1916.
He was promoted to Lance Bombardier in 1917 and was killed in action in October 1918 in France where he is buried in Honnechy British Cemetery. His headstone reads “Never shall thy memory fade”.
After James’ death Elizabeth was forwarded his private possessions which included letters, photos, wallet, wrist watch and strap, scissors, cigarette case, clasp knife, penknife, whistle and strap, diary, cards, dictionary, pencil case and pencil.
On receipt of these in March 1919, Elizabeth contacted the War Office to say:
“I am very much surprised to see there was no money on him. I feel quite sure there must have been some as he was a fellow always had some on him, I don’t say he would have much, but I feel sure he would have a little, but it seems to me that others came before me. Another thing, why were the leaves torn from his Diary. Surely I was entitled to my Poor Boys belongings.”
James and William are remembered at home on the St Paul’s roll of honour in St James the Great Church.
1894 – 1903 Admission Register
1903 – 1913 Admission Register
British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920
UK, WWI Service Medal and Award Rolls, 1914-1920
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919