Gravestone Image – Jesse William & Bessie Beatrice Marsh

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Photo of gravestone taken in 2015 by Jan Marsh

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Inscription

Jesse William Marsh was born at Kingston on 14 May 1892 to Charles Marsh (1858-1936), a carter, and Sarah Marsh nee Tatchell (1858-1927) who were living at West Hill. Between 1901 and 1911, the family moved to Orchard Hill. Soon after the outbreak of the First World War, Jesse was serving his country. He is thought to have been with the Royal Garrison Artillery.

Jesse married Bessie Beatrice Bray at Kingston on 11 September 1916. At the time Jesse was residing at South Farnborough. Bessie was born on 18 January 1894. Her father was named as William John Bray on the marriage record but further investigation suggests her father’s middle name may have been Henry instead. The witnesses were John Marsh (brother of Jesse) and Katherine Hunt.

Jesse and Bessie continued to live at Orchard Hill. It is thought they had three children (born 1920, 1922 and 1924) but none were living at home in September 1939 when Jesse gave his occupation as Farm Foreman.

Bessie saw the RAF airplane immediately before it crashed on 18 March 1938 – see Three Killed in R.A.F. Accident.

Bessie died on 22 December 1945 aged 51 and was buried at Kingston New Church two days later (Christmas Eve). Jesse survived her by just under eleven years. He died aged 64 on 1 December 1956 and was buried three days later.

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Loxston

Alfred Loxston (1858-1921)

Alfred, born in 1858 at Spaxton near Bridgwater in Somerset, married Elizabeth Hill (1860-1957) in 1888 and they had four children (see later). In 1911 the family were living at 4 Frankley Buildings, Camden Road, Bath. Alfred and Elizabeth moved to Kingston around 1912/13 so he could take up the post of Foreman at the Estate Carpenter’s Shop.

During the Great War, Alfred played the organ in the Old Church until the regular organist, Gilbert Dorey had recovered from injuries sustained on active service. Alfred died in 1921 aged 63 and Elizabeth died in 1957 at the ripe old age of 97. Both are buried in the Old Lower Churchyard although only Elizabeth’s grave is marked with a headstone.

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Elizabeth Loxston’s headstone in the Old Lower Churchyard. Unfortunately the metallic lettering has been damaged by use of a strimmer in the churchyard. Some of the buckled letters lie in the soil.

Children of Alfred & Elizabeth:

1.   Mary Loxston (1889-?)

In 1911, Mary was an Elementary School Teacher in Bath.

2.   George Hugh Loxston (1891-1978)

In 1911, George was an Assurance Clerk. He signed up in 1915 and initially served with the 2nd King Edward’s Horse Regiment and then later in the newly formed Tank Corps achieving rank of Acting Colour Sergeant. George was living at Kingston with his mother after his father’s death in 1921. George married Hilda Maisie Marsh (1902-1957) of The Square, Corfe Castle in 1926. He later moved to Cowley, Oxfordshire where he was a leading fitter. Three years after Hilda died, in 1960, George married Sarah Emily Bradshaw (1907-1995). George died in 1978 and his ashes were interred at Kingston in 1983. Sarah died in 1995 in her birth county of Derbyshire.

3.   Alfred Gerald Loxston (1893-1985)

In 1911 ‘Gerald’ was a Builder’s Clerk in Bath. During World War 1, Gerald who was 5 feet 9½ inches tall, served as a Gunner with the Royal Field Artillery initially in France. After leaving service in 1919 he lived at 3 Sunnybank, Lyncombe Vale, Bath. In 1940, Gerald Loxston married Kingston resident Lilian Matilda Bartlett neé Allen (1900-1978), widow of the late George Edward Bartlett (1903-1939). George Bartlett’s mother, Georgina, was publican at the Eldon Arms for almost 50 years. Lilian’s mother was Beatrice Mary Allen neé Bydder (1871-1940) who taught at the School in Kingston.

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Gerald & Lilian Loxston

Gerald and Lilian played an important role in the life of Kingston. Not only was Gerald the Clerk of Works for the Encombe Estate, but he was also:

  • Secretary of the Kingston Reading Room
  • Secretary of the ‘Kingston Cricket Team’, winners of the Dorset Cricket Cup Div II in 1929
  • Treasurer of the Church Fête and Flower Show in 1935
  • ‘Trinculo’ in the 1937 open-air production of ‘The Tempest’ at Encombe
  • ‘Churdles Ash’ in the 1946 production of ‘The Farmer’s Wife’, while wife Lilian played ‘Sarah Smerdon’

Meanwhile Lilian was secretary of the Women’s Institute and during the Second World War helped serve refreshments in the Reading Room which had been converted to a canteen for troops billeted at Kingston House and Encombe House.

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Lilian & Gerald Loxston standing in the front garden of their home in West Street. The names of the two ladies in the gateway are not known.

Gerald and Lilian lived in West Street opposite the School House. They did not have any children.

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The old cobbler’s shop in the back garden of Gerald & Lilian’s home in West Street

4.   William Robert Loxston (1896-1976)

In 1911, William was an Auctioners & Estate Agents Clerk in Bath. In 1926 he married Hilda Grace Seager (1898-1956) and they had two sons,  Alfred Robert Loxston (1928-2003) and Bernard George Loxston (1930-1997). William was a Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths from 1930 to 1942.  Hilda died in 1956 aged 58 and William died in 1976 aged 80.

Photographs of the Loxston brothers together…

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The Loxston brothers c. 1913 – Gerald, George & William

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The brothers again, this time in uniform c. 1914 – Gerald, George & William

We are grateful to Neil Loxston, Gerald’s great nephew, for giving permission to publish all of these photographs.

If you have any further information, memories, photographs etc. about the Loxston family then please contact us.

Page last updated: 6 January 2016

1938: Dorset R.A.F. Crash

Disaster in Coastal Fog – Three Men Killed near Corfe Castle – Aircraft in Flames

The three occupants of an R.A.F. aeroplane, a Fairy Swordfish, bound from Gosport to Roborough, near Plymouth, on Friday afternoon, were killed when the machine, after hitting some trees, crashed in a coastal fog, near Encombe House, the Dorsetshire residence of the Hon. Sir Ernest S. Scott, K.C.M.G., M.V.O. Hearing the noise of the crash, Sir Ernest went to the scene with some of his employees, but was unable to render assistance owing to the flames which burst from the wreckage.

The dead men were Pilot-Officer Frederick Edgar Williams, Corporal Cyril John Coles, and Leading-Aircraftsman David Samuel Hurrell.

Eye-Witness’s Story

Mr. E. Hixon [Hixson], of the Encombe Estate Office, who, with others, heard the crash and rushed to the spot in a motor-car, told a representative of this paper that the ‘plane was flying in the fog over the coast line at 2.45 p.m. and must have hit some tree on the road to Swyre Head, just outside the village of Kingston, near Corfe Castle. When he arrived the aeroplane was in flames. “There were three men in it, but we could not get near them owing to the great heat. I think the men must have been killed when the plane crashed.” The aeroplane had rolled down through the trees and then down the hill-side in the vale. An overcoat of R.A.F. blue, was thrown out of the aeroplane, and in the pocket was a handkerchief bearing the name ‘Williams, Gosport.’”

The bodies were subsequently removed to the mortuary at the Poor-law Institution, at Wareham, pending the inquest on Tuesday by the Coroner for East Dorset (Mr. R. N. Neville-Jones).

“Flying Too Low”

Coroner and Cause of Accident.

Graphic stories of the disaster were told the Coroner by witnesses and the jury, of whom Mr. S. W. Roshier was foreman, returned a verdict of “Accidental Death.”

The Coroner, reviewing the evidence, observed for some reason or other the aeroplane was flying very much too low round the Purbeck Hills, and one of the probable reasons for that was that there was a good deal of low cloud about, and the pilot, having lost sight of the ground, came down to see if he could see it again, and in doing so, unfortunately, came down too low and had the very great misfortune to strike some trees. Had he been a very few feet further up he would have missed them altogether and got out to sea quite safely.

How Men were Identified

Leading Aircraftsman Gwyn Lewis, of the R.A.F., stationed at Gosport, identified Pilot-Officer Williams (aged 21 and single) by his flying overalls, and Corporal Coles (married, aged 32) by his name on a piece of his trousers, which was not burned. Hurrell was aged 21 and single.

Squadron-Leader John Goodenough Elton, commanding the R.A.F.  training squadron at Gosport, stated Mr. Williams was a pupil on torpedo training course, and was on a cross-country training flight to Roborough, which witness had authorised. Williams had had just over 200 hours flying as a pilot, and he was considered one of the best pilots, being qualified in all respects. The two passengers were both members of the training squadron and on a pilot course.

Flying Low Regulations

Coroner: What are the regulations about flying low?

Witness: In the normal course of events a pilot is not supposed to fly lower than 1,000 feet, but he is occasionally forced lower by the weather.

The Coroner: The visibility in places was very good apparently that afternoon, but over the Purbeck Hills and the particular spot where he crashed there was fog.

Witness observed it was supposition, but he thought probably the aeroplane was flying under a cloud and keeping sight of the ground, which a pilot would often do. “They should actually keep up high and wait until they came out of it,” added witness.

The Coroner pointed out that this was the second fatality which had occurred in his district within the last few months due to almost exactly the same cause – fog and low flying, and there was an instruction the pilot should keep up.

Witness: Pilots are definitely instructed not to fly low when they get in bad weather, but remain at a safe height and turn round and trace their way back into the fair weather again. The machine was completely equipped with instruments which showed its height.

The Coroner: What it really amounts to was inexperience and he was doing what he ought not to do – a dangerous procedure? – Yes.

Witness: Oh, yes. In this particular case I instructed the pilot to return if the weather deteriorated after leaving Gosport, where it was quite fine. There were special orders about low flying.

The Coroner: Which are honoured in the breach apparently.

Eye-Witnesses’ Stories

Stories of the disaster were told by witnesses – Misses Bessie Beatrice Marsh, of Orchard Hill Farm, Kingston, Mr Ernest Albert Hixon [Hixson] of Rabling-road, Swanage, a clerk employed at the Encombe Estate Office, Kingston, and Mrs. Alice Pamela Sampson [Sansom], of Encombe.

Mrs. Marsh said her husband remarked, “He is going to hit the house,” it was flying so low – within another foot it would have touched the chimney. There was a very thick mist and she was only just able to make out the outline of the ‘plane as it passed straight over the house. A few seconds later she heard a loud crash in the direction the ‘plane had gone, followed by a loud bang or explosion. She went in a lorry with her husband and found the machine in flames. It had torn right through Polar Wood and was burning fiercely on the hill-side – the sea side of the wood – just below.

Mr. Hixon [Hixson] stated there was a very thick fog. He heard the roar of a ‘plane which seemed directly over-head and apparently travelling at a very fast speed. Next he heard a crash of splintering wood.

From her upstairs window, Mrs. Sampson [Sansom] said she saw the ‘plane fall in flames half-way down the hillside, and she observed an object – what it was she did not know – roll down the hill.

Replying to Mr. R. C. Hockey, Air Ministry Inspector of Accidents, witness said she could not quite remember but she was under the impression the aeroplane hit the hillside before bursting into flames.

P.C. Cutler produced the overcoat of an R.A.F. officer, singed but not badly burnt., which he said he found near where the ‘plane crashed. Parts of the aeroplane were scattered all over the hillside, and trees in polar Wood had had their tops cut off by the plane. Later, with the assistance of other policemen, he recovered the bodies from the wreckage.

The Coroner, on behalf of himself and the jury, expressed to the relatives of deceased, the sympathy which they all felt for them in this “most unfortunate tragedy.” – Inspector G. E. Burt, on behalf on the police, associated himself with these remarks.

Western Gazette, 25 March 1938

1938: Three Killed in R.A.F. Accident

Crash near Corfe Castle

The three occupants of an R.A.F. aeroplane from Gosport were killed yesterday when the machine crashed on a hillside near Corfe Castle, Dorset.

They were: Pilot Officer F. E. Williams; No. 335,888, Corporal C. J. Coles;  and No. 526,069, Leading Aircraftman D. S. Hurrell.

The accident occurred in thick fog. The aeroplane just missed some farm cottages, tore through a small wood, came to rest 200 yards down the hillside, and burst into flames. The engine was torn from the fuselage and came to rest at the bottom of a valley, 300 yards from the wreckage of the fuselage.

Mrs. Marsh, an occupant of one of the cottages, said she saw the aeroplane come out of the fog. It narrowly missed the house and disappeared. She then heard it crash through the wood, and there was a loud explosion.

Sir Ernest Scott, who lives at Encombe House, Corfe Castle, said the aeroplane crashed about 500 yards from his home. He heard the crash and went to the scene with some of his men. There was a thick fog at the time, and it appeared that the machine, which had been flying along the top of the hill, had struck a number of trees in a wood and then fallen down the hillside. The tops of about a dozen trees were cut off.

The Times, Saturday 19 March 1938

 

1935: Fete in the Purbecks

FETE IN THE PURBECKS – EFFORT FOR KINGSTON VILLAGE FUNDS.

An unusual privilege – that of viewing the beautiful grounds of Encombe Manor –  was enjoyed by hundreds of villagers and visitors who attended a flower show and fete held there by kind permission of Sir Ernest Scott, K.C.M.G., M.V.O, on Thursday afternoon and evening. Fete attractions were scattered over the smooth lawns surrounding the delightful bright green lake at the rear of the house, and a small but excellent lot of entries for the flower show were exhibited in the quaint temple in the grounds round a magnificent bronze statue of a gladiator.  Glorious sunshine and an admirably organised programme made the occasion ideal. The effort was in aid of general parish funds and the flower show was the second annual.

The fete was opened by Sir Ernest, to whom sincere thanks were voiced. There was a variety of attractive side-shows and the general arrangements were supervised by Rev. F. S. Horan (vicar). Mr. W. E. Candy was hon. Treasurer, and the show was organised by Mr. N. Phillips, head gardener to Sir Ernest. Sir Herbert Cook, of Studland, was among those present, and his head gardener, Mr. F. C. Gibbons, judged the show exhibits. Commenting on their all-round excellence he said: “It is a much better show  than it was last year; it is at least twice as good.  I really do think that it will be a better show than that at Swanage in years to come.”

Organisers of the various departments of the fete were: – Side-shows, Mr. R. Dorey; gymkhana, Col. Muspratt; entertainments, Mrs. F. W. Pond of Swanage; refreshments, Mrs. Orchard (assisted by members of the Kingston W.I.). A folk dancing display was given under the direction of Miss Dawson, and there was Morris dancing under the leadership of Miss Dymand, of Langton Matravers. Many of the dancers had competed in winning teams in Albert Hall competitions. In the evening modern dancing took place of the lawn. The two entertainments arranged by Mrs. Pond of Swanage, and given voluntarily by the Everest Concert Party, were excellent. Selections were played by the Kingston and Corfe Castle Band, under the direction of Mr. W. Hooper, who gave their services.

There were frequent ‘buses from Corfe Castle and Swanage to Kingston, from where a special ‘bus service ran to Encombe along the steep and richly wooded slopes of the Purbecks, on top of which the beautiful village of Kingston stands.

Five hundred entrance tickets were sold and yet there were not enough for all. Besides these, Scouts, Guides, and children were admitted free.

 

FLOWER SHOW RESULTS.

Three vases of cut flowers – Mrs. W. Dorey, Mrs. A. Cooper, Mrs. C. Orchard. Cut flowers – Mrs. Tizzard, Mrs. W. Dorey, Mrs. Orchard. Sweet peas – Mrs. Orchard, Mrs. W. Dorey, Mrs. A. Cooper. Asters – Mrs. Orchard, Mrs. A. Dorey, Mrs. Tizzard. Stocks – D. Hunt. Window plant – Mrs. C. Hunt, D. Hunt, Mrs. W. Dorey.

Potatoes – J. Marsh, W. Dorey, W. Damer. Shallots – R. Beavis, J. Marsh, D. Hunt. Carrots – W. Tuck. Spring Onions – G. White, D. Hunt, G. Bartlett. Peas – Mrs. H. Hunt. Marrow – Mrs. J. Marsh. Runner beans – W. Dorey, P. Damer, D. Hunt.

Cooking apples – R. Beavis, W. Tuck, C. Brown.

Wild flowers – Miss I. Marsh, Miss G. Dorey, Miss Stickland.

Home-made jam – Miss Joyce, Mrs. A. Cooper, Miss K. Bullen. Plain cake – Mrs. W. Dorey, Mrs. C. Orchard, Mrs. A. Cooper. Fruit cake – Mrs. A. Cooper, Mrs. A. Dorey, Mrs. P. Damer. Jam sandwich – Mrs. A. Cooper, Mrs. W. Dorey. Collection of vegetables for special prize given by Mr. Gibbons – W. Dorey, J. Marsh, P. Damer.

OPEN CLASSES.

Runner beans – L. Stockley. Spring onions – G. Wright, Mrs. Stockley. Peas – 2, L. Stockley. Cucumbers – L. Stockley. Stocks – L. Stockley.

 

GYMKHANA FEATURES.

A gymkhana was admirably arranged by Colonel Muspratt of Swanage. Among the various amusing events were blowing up balloons (Miss Daphne Bankes was the winner in completion with many Scouts); balloon sticking; and sausage stakes.

There were two bowling competitions. A pig presented by Mr. Barnes of Afflington Farm, was won by a visitor at the farm. A ham given by Mr. Dicker, of Wareham, was secured by Miss Roupell, a visitor from Surrey. The skittles prize, a shoulder of mutton, presented by Mr. Budden, of Corfe Castle, went to Mr. Brain. Treasure “stakes” were arranged by Mrs. Hare.

Western Gazette, Friday 23 August 1935

1914: December: Parish Magazine

Vicar: Arthur Napier

Church Services

I hope to have the usual Lantern Services on the first three Wednesdays in Advent, namely – December 2nd, 9th and 16th, at 7 p.m.

There will be no Mid-day Service of Communion on the third Sunday of the month, but two Celebrations on Christmas morning at 8 and 11. The collections on this day will be made for the Church of England Society for Waif and Stray Children.

Confirmation

The Lord Bishop of the Diocese held a Confirmation Service at Corfe Castle on Thursday, November 26th, at 3 o’clock. Three candidates were presented from Kingston: George Caines, Seymour Tatchell and Lillian Allen.

O.H.M.S

We have now, I am proud to say, twelve (in addition to E. J. Collins, at present a prisoner of war) connected directly or indirectly with our village who are serving with the Colours.

May God protect them and enable them to be a credit to their King, their Country and their village home:

William Cooper            Fred Bullen

Walter Hunt                  Robert Grant

James Medd                 Jesse Marsh

Robert Dorey                George Davis

Jack Caines                  Alan Travers

Parish Almanacs

These Almanacs for the New Year can be had after any of the Lantern Services in December.

Baptism

Nov. 15.            Mary Geraldine de Courcy Cooper

1914: July: Parish Magazine

Vicar: Arthur Napier

There is not much news to put on record this month, with the exception of a visit from the Rev. T. Russell-Wright, who conducted the Services on Trinity Sunday in my absence, and whose ministrations, from all that I can hear, were very much appreciated.

We are at last able to get back to our routine of Day School and Sunday School Afternoon Services, which have been so much broken in upon (by chicken-pox) of late. July 5th will be kept as “Flower Sunday”, and for convenience of taking the flowers to the Vicarage, will be held in the New Church. The flowers will be sent to the sick people in the East London parish of Horsleydown; and the Church collection for sending the poor children to the seaside will be made on the last Sunday of the month, viz., July 26th.

Our June collection for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals amounted to £2 3s. 8d.

The Dedication Festival of our Church will be held on Sunday, July 26th. The proper day (St. James’ Day) is Saturday, July 25th, but for convenience we will observe it on the day following.

Baptisms

May 31.                        Amelia Ann Marsh

,,    ,,                             Henry Charles Kellaway

Wedding

June 22.                      Freeland George Vincent and Lillian Grace Arnold