Kiveton & Wales Heritage

Kiveton & Wales Heritage

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Names beginning with C

Lance Corporal George Carlile was born 1885 at Hound in Hampshire.  He was a career soldier, joining the Royal Horse and Field Artillery in Sept 1899 and served in India.  He transferred to the Military foot Police June 1910 and made Lance Corporal 5th September 1911.  He married Lilliam Smith 22nd September 1911 at Wakefield and lived at 57 East Terrace at Wales.  He was a Policeman prior to re-enlisting for 4 years 21/4/1914.  During his career he received 3 good conduct medals.

James CartrightSergeant James Cartwright was the son of Benjamin and Mary Cartwright of Waleswood, born 1895 in Killamarsh.  Prior to enlisting he worked at Waleswood Colliery.  He joined the Royal Army Medical Corps (7685), and later transferred to Royal Flying Corps.  He was mentioned in despatches, (gaz 1st June 1915) and awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) for tending wounded under heavy shell fire.  The report in the Worksop Guardian dated 30th June 1915 reads:

Corporal James Cartwright, R.A.M.C., 14th Field Ambulance, 5th Division, whose home is at Walesbar, has been awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for gallant conduct in the field.  The particular act of bravery for which the honour was awarded and for which Cartwright was promoted from Private, to full Corporal, was performed a few months ago and Corpl. Cartwright has just written home to inform his parents that he has been awarded the medal. The winning of the honour is described by a mate of Cartwright’s in a letter to the parents: the letter as follows

“I am sure you will be pleased to hear the story of your son’s brave and gallant act, which has brought him under the notice of his superior officers. A few days ago, whilst he was carrying out his usual duties the enemy began to shell the village, dealing death and destruction on all side. A man was wounded and lay exposed in the open square. Your lad saw him and without the slightest hesitation went to his aid and picked up the wounded man and began to retrace his steps. Shells were screaming around and one passed over your lad and his burden, burying itself in the ground a few yards in front of them, without hurting either. At last he reached the shelter of a wall and had begun to dress the wounds of his patient, when another shell burst close by. Although practically deserted, your brave lad stuck to his post and finally dressed the poor fellow’s wounds, five in all – and then removed him to a place of safety”.

Corporal Cartwright, who is 20 years of age, enlisted fifteen months ago and previous to enlisting he was employed at the Waleswood Collieries. The news of the honour won by Corporal Cartwright has given considerable satisfaction to a large number of friends in the district.

On 28th November 1917 he married Elsie Blackwell at St Johns Church.  After the war they moved to Doncaster; he died 1963.


Lance-Corporal Charles Chambers was the son of James and Ann Chambers, who lived at Norwood Locks. Charles was a member of A Company, in the 56th Battalion of the Machine Gun Corps, service number 130079. Before enlisting he worked at the Kiveton Park Colliery. He was killed on 29th August 1918, aged 20. In a letter from his O.C. (reported in the Worksop Guardian 4th October 1918) he states that he was hit by a German machine gun bullet in a plucky attempt to bring up a tripod through a gap in the wire which was swept by the enemy’s fire.

Charles Chamber's memorial card“I managed to get through with the gun itself, but when I signalled for him to follow with the tripod, he did not hesitate for an instant, though he knew the risk. He had been working his gun fearlessly earlier in this section under my direction, and up to the time of his death, he showed that courage which his invariable willingness and cheerfulness would lead one to expect. His death is a personal loss to all his section including myself. His unfailing cheerfulness and unselfishness under all conditions, won him the friendship of all. I may assure you that he was spared any suffering by being killed almost instantaneously, and so we need have no sorrow for the boy himself, as such a character as his has nothing to fear of death or what is beyond.”

He is buried at the HAC Cemetery in Ecout-St.Main, II.D.4, and commemorated on the Wales Square, Colliery memorial and St John's Church plaque.  The Worksop Guardian article quoted above also state "Mr. and Mrs. Chambers have three other sons serving, one in France, one in Doncaster Hospital and one at home on draft leave".  This must be referring to thier sons James Devine Chambers (b1894), Robert Chambers (b.1896) and Harry Chambers (b. 1900), however we have only been able to trace the service record of Robert (see below).

Gunner James Robert Chambers was born around 1895 (Anston) the son of Robert and Beatrice Chambers.  The family lived at Thorpe Salvin.  He served with the Royal Field Artillery, enlisting in 1915 (service number 106819).  A report in the Worksop Guardian of 21st June 1918 states:

James Robert ChambersMr. and Mrs. R. Chambers, Thorpe Salvin, have received news that their son, Gunner J. Chambers, R.F.A., was posted as missing on March 21st, and up to now no definite news of him has come through. His Lieutenant, writing to Mr. and Mrs. Chambers, says;-  “I regret to say that your son, Gunner J Chambers, has been missing since March 21st. He was at the guns on the morning of the attack, and we presume has been taken prisoner, though no word has filtered through concerning any who were with him. . . I sincerely hope you have more definite and brighter news in the near future. A. B. Wilkinson, Lt.”

Gunner Chambers joined up in 1915, and has seen two years and eight months service in France. Prior to enlistment, he was employed at the Kiveton Park Collieries. Any news concerning him would be most gratefully received by his anxious parents. We hope to reproduce his photo in our next issue.

He is commemorated on the Kiveton Pak Colliery memorial and the Wales UM chapel plaque.

Private Robert Chambers was the second son of James and Ann Chambers (b. 1896 at Hayton, Retford) brother to Charles (as above).  Prior to enlisting he worked at Kiveton Park Colliery with his brothers. He enlisted into the Notts and Derby Regiment, 4th Battation on 20th Oct 1914 at Killamarsh (service number 70559).  On 23rd February 1917 he was sent to Detenton and deducted 3 days pay for ‘misconduct’.  He suffered a fractured right leg and gunshot wound to his right hand in May 1918 and was discharged to ‘Class P’ on 2nd Nov 1918.  This meant that he could return to civilian life, was eligible to claim a pension but could be recalled to duty should the conflict continue.

Percy ChapmanPercy Chapman was born around 1895 at Wales, the son of John and Hannah Maria Chapman.  He lived on Springfield Terrace and worked at Kiveton Park Colliery.  We know he served in the war as we have a phot of him in uniform but have been unable to locate his service record.





Sapper Frank Checkley (born 1889 at Gainsborough) enlisted into the Royal Engineers (112951) and was part of a tunnelling corps due to his mining experience.  He was well known locally for his expertise in constructing roof supports in the mine.  He married Florence (nee Hurst). He went to France 22nd Sept 1915 and was discharged 30th January 1919.  He is named on the Wales United Methodist roll of honour plaque.

Harry Osborn CheckleyPrivate Harry Osborne Checkley was the son of Joseph and Hannah Checkley. Their family home during the war was at 1 Albert Terrace, the ‘Little Rows’ in Kiveton. Harry's father Joseph was one of the first miners to work in the pit at Kiveton, he moved here just months after it opened (he had been born in Kenilworth in Warwickshire and lived at number 11 ‘Kiveton’ with Hannah and Hannah’s sister Elizabeth in 1871). During his time in Kiveton ‘Os’ spend a great amount of time teaching his nephew John William Morton, or Jack as he was known when he worked at Kiveton Pit, to play the violin and developed his interest in reading. Harry was a member of the bible class, Sunday school teacher and on of the first members of the Wales Orchestral Band. He also worked in Kiveton Pit, first with pit ponies and then on the coal-face.

Os worked in the High Hazel and was a promising mining student at the University of Sheffield. In this picture Os (on the right) he is with his friend Albert Lamb.  The two did not join up with the other miners in September as Os had to have his appendix out, so they signed up together on 31st December 1914 in Sheffield, joining the second battalion of the Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry. Harry’s service number was 20785 and after training in Hull they were posted to France, where Albert died less than a fortnight later. Harry survived him by 61 days, dying at St. Eloi with twenty-five of his fellow KOYLIs on 18 July 1915. Harry was just twenty-one. At the time his parents were living at 47 Wesley Road, Kiveton.  He is remembered on the Colliery memorial, Wales Square and also St John's church plaque.

Private Joseph Checkley was the brother of Harry and Frank also worked as a miner.  He was born at Gainsborough in 1887 and married Florence (nee Whelpton) in 4th quarter 1909 (Sheffield).  He lived at 70 Sheffield Road, Killamarsh.  Joseph was amongst the first in the district to enlist in Killamarsh on 29th August 1914, joining the York and Lancs, 11th Battalion (service number 3750).   He was wounded on 26th November 1915, being shot in the left buttock while digging trenches.  A Worksop Guardian article of 24th December 1915 described the commitment of this particular family:


Intimation has been received at Kiveton Park that Pte. Joseph Checkley, York and Lancs Regiment, has been wounded in action and is now in hospital. Pte. Checkley, who is married and has two children, only went on active service on October 24th, and was wounded on November 24th, the news being received during the last few days. The wound sustained are said to be in the lower part of the body.

His mother, Mrs. Checkley, is proud of the fact that all her three sons and a son-in-law have joined the Army. Of the sons, Pte. Harry Osborne Checkley has made the supreme sacrifice, Pte. Joseph Checkley is wounded, and Pte. Frank Checkley is in the trenches.  Mrs. Checkley is justified in observing: “There are no shirkers in my family, thank God”.

The report also notifies of the wounding of Walter Blackwell and the hospitalisation of Private Edward Redfern due to ‘trench foot’.   Joseph Checkley returned to front line duty and was wounded again in December 1918, this time in the forearm and suffering the effects of gas.  He was discharged in January 1919.


Leonard Cheetham of Waleswood (b.1883), the son of Richard and Mary Cheetham, worked as a Water works chargeman.  He is named on the Wales UM chapel plaque for his service during the war.  We have been unable to locate his service records.

Private Alfred Clarke (born 1897 at Thorpe Salvin) was the son of Hugh Clarke of The Locks, Thorpe Salvin.  He served with East Riding Yorks Yeomanry, 2/1st Battalion (50989) enlisting on 21st March 1915 at Worksop.  He was a miner prior to the war.  Alfred was discharged to the reserves 18th July 1917 due to gun shot wound to left shoulder and the inability to raise his arm high above head.  He married Gladys Meese of Kiveton in 1920.

Able Seaman Albert Clarkson: Albert Clarkson, service number J/28603 had been made a leading seaman when he died, and it seems like his listed rank is a mistake on the Wales memorial. Albert was the son of Albert and Hannah (Daisy) Clarkson, who lived at 11 Colliery Road in Kiveton, just a few hundred yards away from the pit. Albert was a real Kiveton lad, his parents moved here even before the pits were sunk in the 1860s. He was 25 when he died, in rather different circumstances to the other Kiveton servicemen.

L55 was a British submarine which sank in the Baltic in 1919, a year after hostilities had come to an end on the Western Front. The British government had decided to intervene in Russia, to join those mobilising against the Soviet government which had been established there in late 1917. L55 was serving in the Baltic Battle Squadron. She had been forced into a minefield by the Bolshevik destroyers Gavril and Azard and was sunk by gunfire after striking a mine. The submarine was raised in August 1928 by the Soviet Navy and, after repair work, shown in the picture to the right, was recommissioned into the Soviet Navy. After much diplomatic wrangling, the bodies of her crew were taken to Heslar, via Kronstadt and Estonia. HMS Champion carried their bodies, with the ship’s Royal Marine Band playing Chopin’s Funeral March as they left Estonia. Albert and his forty-one fellow seaman were buried with full military honours in September 1928 at the Haslar Royal Naval Cemetery in Hampshire. The men of L55 are commemorated in various places, including on a new memorial in Portsmouth Cathedral, which was unveiled by the Duke of York in late 2005.

We believe his brother Wilfred Clarkson (b.1897) also served but have been unable to locate his service record.


David ClarksonPrivate David Clarkson was the son of David and Fanny Clarkson, who lived at 9 Church Street in Wales. His grandfather, also David Clarkson, had been the butcher in Kiveton, living at No. 5 Wales Road. In 1901 his father was the butcher for Wales, living between the Post Office and Wales Hall. David was 21 years old when killed on 18 April 1917, whilst serving with the Cameronions (6th Battalion Scottish Rifles), service number 240955. This was part of the Battle of Arras, one of the most important but relatively understudied episodes of the war. He is buried at Warlincourt Halte British Cemetery, Saulty, grave reference VII. J. 3.

John Clarkson (b.1899, Wales) was the brother of David Clarkson.  He is mentioned on the Wales UM chapel plaque but we have been unable to locate his service records.

William James Cooke (b.1892 at Barlborough) was living and working at Waleswood colliery in 1911, his occupation being 'stationary engine driver underground'.  His mother Sarah had remarried William Morris, a tailor. He enlisted with the York and Lancaster Regiment (service number 325) on 10th September 1914 at Sheffield.  Like other miners, he also saw service with the Royal Engineers, being seconded to a Tunnelling corps between 3rd March 1915 and 15th June 1915.  He was gassed and received a gunshot wound to his left leg 7th June 1918.  In 1919 he was living at 1 Main Street Swallownest.

The Cooper Family

Five sons of Mark and Emma Cooper of Church Street, Wales signed up for service during the war.  The eldest, Private Enoch Cooper (b.1889) had first offered his services to the military in 1906 with the Coldstream Guards, but appears to have only served for 82 days.  At the outbreak of the war he was a Police Constable with Sheffield City Police.  He served with the Military Police in Egypt.  James Cooper (b.1891) enlisted but was deemed medically unfit and discharged.  Corporal Horace Cooper (b.1892) was one of the first to enlist on 20th August 1914 and served with the Royal Army Medical Corp (service number 7684).  Prior to the war he worked at Waleswood colliery as a winch driver. He was hospitalised in 1915 due to gas poisoning in France and wrote a letter to the Worksop Guardian detailing German atrocities as they withdrew. He was awarded medals 'clasp and roses'. The youngest two brothers joined, served and died together.  Lance Corporal Samuel Cooper (b.1894) and his brother Private Lawrence Cooper (b. 1897) enlisted in the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (KOYLI) on 11th Nov 1914 at Sheffield.  They had consecutive service numbers; Samuel (19877) and Lawrence (19878).  Both worked at Kiveton Park Colliery.  Samuel played cricket and football at Wales.  They had been at the front for nine months when the news was conveyed to their parents that they had both been killed during the offensive of 1st July 1916.  A report in the Worksop Guardian of 14th July 1916 stated:

Samuel CooperLawrence CooperNews was received on Tuesday of the death of two brothers, Sam and Lawrence Cooper, both of KOYLI, sons of Mr and Mrs M Cooper, Church Street, Wales.  The news was conveyed to Mrs Cooper in a letter from Private W Ledger who wrote: Dear Madam, I am sorry to have to break the news to you of the death of your two sons, Sam and Lawrence Cooper, which took place during the advance.  They were well respected by their comrades and Platoon officers.  I think it my duty to write and let you know that they were both killed instantaneously by the same shell.  I have his little pocket book, which I got out of his pocket after the battle, so I will bring it with me when I come home to Sheffield and can tell you the full details.  I and a few more comrades buried them side by side, between our lines and the germans.  You must excuse bad writing, as I feel the blow as much as anyone, as Lawrence and I were bombers together. – Yours sincerely, W. Ledger, 9th KOYLI.

They are commemorated on the Thiepval memorial, the Kiveton Park Colliery memorial and at Wales Square.


Frank Cope's letter to Worksop GuardianFrank Cope:  We have found very little about Frnak except the following letter which he wrote to the Worksop Guardian (transcript of image below).  This gives an insight into social and community feeling towards those who were appealing in tribunals and towards those who had yet to serve their country.

Dear Sir, - I shall be very pleased if you will find space in your popular paper for this letter. There is a very strong rumour in circulation that I have appealed at the Local Tribunal for exemption on grounds of an invalid wife, and got exempt. This is altogether incorrect. I have not appealed before any Tribunal. I was in the Colliery “comb-out”, and stood my chance among other lads in the ballot. My number out of the bag was 180. I underwent a medical examination with them and was Grade 1.  Fortunately the required number was got before my number was reached, and now I await the military calling me up.  I also heard of a C.O. condemning me for appealing to five or six young chaps, but, thank God, I have a fighting spirit when needed, and am more than a match for any of the blooming lot, the rotters. They can neither let themselves alone or anybody else, and if I had appealed it would have been on a better principle than these shirking party, who are always anxious to grab all war bonuses, etc., to their advantage. I say stop them having it if they won’t fight at all when called on to defend their wives, children and country. I am no more than any other lad is to his mother, who has gone or has to go, but I think myself far superior to this lot. Yours faithfully,                                                                                                           FRANK COPE, 5 Wales-road, Kiveton Park, May 13th, 1918.


Daniel CopestakePrivate Daniel Copestake served with the 6th battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment, service number 15225, and was killed on 22 August 1915. When Daniel was killed, his brother William Henry Copestake was running the Sherwood Inn in Worksop. Daniel and his family (his parents were William and Jane) had grown up in No. 8 the Old Rows, Park Terrace off Station Road. His father and other brothers were all miners at Kiveton Colliery. Daniel died during the Gallipoli Campaign and he is commemorated on the Helles Memorial and also on the Wales Square memorial.



Private John Robert Jeremiah Isiah Culley was born in 1885 at Sponden, Derbyshire but his family appear to have moved to Sheffield soon after (probably for work).  He married Alice Matilda Maskrey in Sheffield in 1907.  They had two children.  He was working at Kiveton Park Colliery when war broke out and was among the 89 men who were the first to sign up at St John’s rooms, Kiveton on 2nd September 1914, joining the Notts and Derbys (Sherwood Foresters), 10th Battalion (service number 14748).  He was killed in action on 1st November 1915 and his wife probably moved back to Sheffield around this time as her address is recorded as 133 Washington Road, Sharrow, Sheffield.  He was buried at Hangard Communal Cemetary Ext, Plot i K14, and is commemorated on the Kiveton Park Colliery memorial.

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