News from 1917.

It is worth remembering that a daily newspaper in 1917 was not the norm so the Parish Magazine was a valuable source of news. Here are some excerpts to give a flavour of the news topics 100 years ago in Ivybridge.


National Service

The result of the Vicar’s interview with the Chaplain-General is the offer of home service, and the refusal of service abroad. This is very disappointing after the long wait. The Vicar has been advised by those in high authority in the Diocese that his home service can be done best, perhaps, in Ivybridge. It seems probable that he will have to accept this advice because of the many difficulties in the way of providing another priest to do his work. It will be good to have things settled one way or the other after such long suspense.

Sunday School Sports

After a wet and threatening morning the weather cleared and we were blessed with a sunny breezy afternoon for the holding of these, in the beautiful park-like field so kindly lent us by Mr and Mrs W.B.Craig; to whom our deepest thanks are due not only for the use of their grounds but also for so kindly giving an excellent lot of peaches and gooseberries to supplement the prizes, and for providing all the cartage of forms and other necessaries.
After a short service in the Church the children proceeded to Torr Hill, and amused themselves on the swings and in various ways until tea-time. The picnic tea was a great success, and everyone seemed thoroughly to enjoy it. After tea the sports began, and lasted virtually until it was time to go home. Messrs Elcock, Hannaford, and Gard, and later on Messrs Baber and Moysey, worked indefatigably in arranging races, long and short, egg-and-spoon, three-legged, sack, obstacle, and so on, giving the children a thoroughly good time and providing the on-lookers with much amusement. Some of the children showed surprisingly good form, the running of the girls being particularly good. Cheers were given for Mr and Mrs Craig and helpers, before dispersing for home. It was generally agreed by those present that, notwithstanding the fact that no food was provided, in accordance with the desire of the Food Controller, yet the treat was one of the most enjoyable of those held at home of recent years. It is regretted that some children did not come because of the non-provision of a tea. We asked for no subscriptions this year, but the following were kindly sent: Mr and Mrs .B. Craig, 4/-; Dr and Mrs Cooper, 5/-; Mr Wright, 2/6; Anon. 2/6; Mrs Giles, 1/-; Mrs Hart, 1/- The latter also gave a quantity of nuts. Mr E.Hawker kindly lent his boiler, Mr Drake the eggs and spoons, and Mr Lee, sacks. We much regret that the weather so interfered with the plans of our Wesleyan friends on the day of their Sunday School outing; and we the more sympathise with them in that they abided loyally by the understanding supposed to have been come to, that all the Sunday Schools in the village should this year act alike with regard to a summer treat.

Golden Roll

Another name has to be added to this roll, that of Albert Edward Cole, C.E.R.A., the second and only surviving son of Mrs Cole and the late John Cole, R.M.L.I. He died in hospital as the result of shock and immersion, his ship being torpedoed. We laid his body to rest in Ivybridge Cemetery on Aug 16th. R.I.P. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his relatives.


Albert Cole served on HMS Recruit, which was mined and sunk on 9th August 1917 in the North Sea. Further details exist of Albert Cole on the Roll of Honour website

Roll of Honour

We are glad to welcome home Harry Fortune convalescent, after being badly “gassed”

Frank Haynes

Private Frank Haynes, Canadian Machine Gun Corps, has given his life for God and King and Country. His chum, Driver Frank Hodge, another Canadian, has sent a letter to his friends saying, “With much regret I write to tell you of the death of poor Frank. He was killed by shell fire, with four of five of his comrades, on Aug.17, at a place called Moric. He was buried very respectably by his fellow comrades with full military honours at the Canadian Cemetery at Fosse 10, near Sains-en-Gohelle. I rode out and visited his grave, which is in good order.” We all share in Driver Hodge’s regret. Everybody here knew him and everybody liked him, and, better still, respected him for his unblemished character.
His brother Percy has been “gassed” in France, and is now in hospital at Nottingham. We wish him a speedy and complete recovery.
An extract from the Cornwood Parish Magazine September 1917.
Frank Haynes was one of 4 brothers, all Cornwood boys and all the other brothers survived the war. Other members of his family lived in Ivybridge and relatives today are still in possession of some of his medals.
Frank Haynes was a fine horseman, and when horses were exported to Canada to work the wheat prairies Frank went with them.  While he was there WW1 broke out. He volunteered for the Canadian Army and went with his horses to France. Whilst a story with shades of War Horse, sadly there was no happy ending.
Frank Haynes is commemorated on the war memorial in Cornwood Church and on the family grave in the churchyard.  He is also commemorated in Canada on their national war memorial.
Frank Haynes

Frank Haynes

From the Tom Maddock collection.


Golden Roll

Our deepest sympathy is with the parents and friends of Harold Folley, who has given his life for God, King, and Country. He was seriously wounded on Sept. 7th, and died next day at a “clearing station” somewhere in France. He was for some years a member of the choir, and was a communicant. He was a general favourite, and his parents have received great sympathy. R.I.P.


Harold Folley was born in Ivybridge and he is commemorated on the Ivybridge War Memorial. Further details of Harold Folley exist on the Roll of Honour website

Roll of Honour

Wilfred T.Cook, Edward Head, William John Watts, Richard Ford, Alfred H.Warley, Thomas S.Reeves, Stephen Friend, Frank Watts, Frank Reeves
Thomas Williams, 24, Keaton Road, who was home for a few days in August, is again at Finsbury Square Hospital, still suffering from the effects of having been buried owing to shell explosion. We wish him complete recovery as speedily as may be.
We regret to hear that Harry Phillips, 16, Belmont Road, is in Warrington Hospital suffering from shell-shock.


Harry Philips is notable in that his age is given as 16, so he must have been underage when he enlisted – not an uncommon event.

Girls Club

Girls are invited to spend Wednesday evenings 7 to 9 p.m. in the Church Room: first meeting Oct. 3rd. Girls at the mill from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m., with a rush home for breakfast and dinner, need relaxation and recreation. Will nobody help to bring a little wholesome, innocent brightness into their lives? Our Lord’s displeasure is more frequently expressed against His servants for what they left undone than for what they did that was amiss. Please to unearth some buried talents for the good of God’s children, that is, for His own glory.

Ivybridge War Savings Association

I am pleased to report a slight increase in the membership of the War Savings Association for the quarter ending 29th Sept. We have received in subscriptions for War Savings certificates the sum of £78 0s. 6d., with which we have purchased 100 certificates, and paid out three items as withdrawals; and have distributed amongst the members 109 certificates. The Treasurer holds a balance of 36 certificates. The accounts of the Association have to be audited during the next week by Messrs. Birch and Elcock.


War Savings Associations were set up locally following the establishment of a National War Savings Committee in 1916 to encourage people to save and lend their money to the government. War savings certificates were designed to be affordable for ordinary people. A £1 certificate cost 15s 6d to buy and could be redeemed, free of income tax, five years later, representing a very attractive return of 29% in five years.