Remembering Stanley Sadler

With many thanks to the Wood Norton Remembers project for this post, As ever if you or your local history group have any research to share please do get in touch.

Stanley Sadler was born in Ridlington on the 19th February 1898, the fourth son of Robert and Rebecca Sadler’s ten children.[1]

Stanley enlisted in the Royal Navy on the 26th October 1916, for the ‘hostilities’, as his card records.  He gave his place of birth as North Walsham (which is about 5 miles from Ridlington), and his occupation as blacksmith.  From the 26th October 1916 to the 30th March 1917 he was a Stoker (2nd class) and based at Pembroke II, a shore establishment at Sheerness.  On the 31st March 1917 he moved to HMS Hibernia (based at Sheerness) and remained there until the 15th October 1917, when Hibernia was moved to Chatham Dockyard as an overflow accommodation ship.   Stanley had been promoted to Stoker 1st class on the 19th July 1917.  He returned to Pembroke II until the 27th December 1917, when he was moved to HMS Dido (a depot ship), from where he joined HMS Scott (see Figure 1).

HMS Scott was the first of a new destroyer class built to be flotilla leaders for the V- and W- class destroyers.  She was launched on the 18th October 1917, but less than a year after entering service she was sunk off the Dutch coast on the 15th August 1918.  It is assumed that a German U-boat torpedoed her, but it is also possible that she hit a mine (the R-class destroyer HMS Ulleswater sank in the same incident).  The German submarine U-71 which had been patrolling and mining the area is usually credited with Scott’s sinking. The wreck of HMS Scott lies approximately 20 nautical miles (23 miles) off the Dutch coast, lying upright with the stern in 35 metres (115 ft) of water, and the bow in 28 metres (92 ft).[2]

Figure 1 : HMS Scott

The Naval records for Stanley record that his widow, Agnes, was informed of his death on the 16th August 1918, and the address on the record is given as 8 Langthorne Street, Stratford (East London).[3]

Stanley is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial, which records those members of the Royal Navy who died in WW1 (and WW2) and have no known grave, the majority of deaths having occurred at sea where no permanent memorial could be provided; 8,517 sailors of the First World War are commemorated on the memorial.

Further research in Stanley’s family reveals that his father, Robert Sadler, was born on the 8th August 1865 in Honing, the son of James and Hannah Sadler, and baptised on the 22nd August 1869, in Honing parish church.[4]  Robert married Rebecca Bacon in 1893.[5]  She was born in Honing in 1872,[6] the daughter of Charles and Mary Bacon.[7]  In 1901, Charles and Mary Bacon were living at Raw Hall, Wood Norton; Charles was a farmer.[8]  He died in 1901, aged 70, and is buried in Wood Norton.[9]  Mary Bacon continued to live at Raw Hall with her son Robert John Bacon and his family.[10]  Robert Sadler died in 1922, aged 56, and is buried in Wood Norton.[11]  Rebecca Sadler died in 1955, aged 82, in Hoxne, Suffolk, but is buried in Wood Norton.[12]

In the 1911 Census for Tunstead records Robert (a farm labourer) and Rebecca Sadler with nine children:

Name Born  Died
George c.1895, Honing.[13]

In the 1911 census, George is aged 16, and a farm labourer.

19th February 1916, aged 20, Carlton, New York, USA.[14]
Fred 14th October 1895, Ridlington.[15]

In the 1911 census, Fred is aged 15, and a farm labourer.  Fred married Anna Tebble in July 1916 in Wood Norton (Stanley Sadler was a witness), and he served in WW1.[16]

1974, aged 79, Essex.[17]
Robert 1896, Ridlington.[18]

In the 1911 census, Robert is aged 14, and a farm labourer.

1912, aged 16.[19]
Stanley 19th February 1898, Ridlington.

In the 1911 census, Stanley is aged 13, and a farm labourer.

15th August 1918, the Dutch coast.
Arthur 4th June 1899, Ridlington.[20]

In the 1911 census, Arthur is aged 11, and at school.  He served with the Royal Navy in WW1, and married Ivy Alice Pointen in October 1929 in Wood Norton.[21]

1985, aged 85, Norwich.[22]
Edward 1901, Salhouse.[23]

In the 1911 census, Edward is aged 9, and at school.  Edward served with the Royal Marine Light Infantry Division in WW1, and emigrated to Australia in 1922.[24]

1976, aged 75, Australia.[25]
Elsie Mary 1903, Salhouse.[26]

In the 1911 census, Elsie is aged 7, and at school.  She married George Bacon in 1924.[27]

1982, aged 79, Suffolk.[28]
Sidney 1905, Tunstead.[29]

In the 1911 census, Sidney is aged 5.  He spent time working in Canada in the 1920s and 1930s.[30]

Charles 1907, Tunstead.[31]

In the 1911 census, Charles is aged 3.

1993, aged 85.[32]

Their last child, Herbert William Sadler, was born on the 30th August 1912.[33]  He married  Gladys M. Warnes in 1937.[34]  Herbert died in 2011, in Fakenham, aged 99.[35]

Fred, Arthur and Edward Sadler are all commemorated on the war memorial in All Saints, Wood Norton, which records the servicemen who served and died, as well as those who survived, the WW1 conflict.  Stanley Sadler’s name also appears on the war memorial at Bawdeswell, church (approximately 6 miles from Wood Norton), but the link with Bawdeswell is not yet known.

We have been fortunate to be able to contact Stanley Sadler’s relatives, who have provided us with information on the Sadler family, including photographs of Stanley and his wife (see Figure 2), and his Memorial Plaque (see Figure 3).

Figure 2 : Stanley Sadler and his wife, Agnes.
The hat band bears the name HMS Scott.

Figure 3 : Stanley Sadler’s Memorial Plaque

[1] UK, Royal Navy Register of Seamen’s Services, 1848-1939 (; UK, British Army and Navy Birth, Marriages and Death Records, 1730-1960 (; FreeBMD, Quarter to March 1898, Smallburgh Vol.4b, p65 (

[2] Wikipedia, HMS Scott (1917) (; Wrecksite, HMS Scott +1918 (

[3] UK, British Army and Navy Birth, Marriages and Death Records, 1730-1960 (

[4] FreeBMD, Quarter to September 1865, Tunstead, Vol.4b, p.45 (; 1911 census, Tunstead (Schedule 47) (; Baptisms, Horning, 1869 (

[5] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1893, Smallburgh Vol.4b, p105 (

[6] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1872, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p51 (

[7] 1881 census, Honing (p.12) (

[8] 1901 census, Wood Norton (p.1) (

[9] Transcript and Index to Wood Norton, Norfolk, Parish Registers, compiled by Keith and Shirley Howell (February 2000), Burials, 1901 (p.130)

[10] 1911 census Wood Norton (Schedule 195) (

[11] FreeBMD, Quarter to March 1922, Aylsham, Vol.4b, p.120 (; Transcript and Index to Wood Norton, Norfolk, Parish Registers, compiled by Keith and Shirley Howell (February 2000), Burials, 1922 (p.131)

[12] Transcript and Index to Wood Norton, Norfolk, Parish Registers, compiled by Keith and Shirley Howell (February 2000), Marriages, 1898 (p.132)

[13] 1911 census, Tunstead (Schedule 47) (

[14] U.S., Find a Grave Index, 1600s-current (

[15] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1985, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p.56 (; England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 (

[16] UK, Royal Marines Registers of Services Index, 1842-1925 (; War Memorial, All Saints, Wood Norton

[17] England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 (

[18] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1896, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p.64 (

[19] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1912, Walsingham, Vol.4b, p.316 (

[20] FreeBMD, Quarter to September 1899, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p.65 (; UK, Royal Navy Registers of Seamen’s Services, 1848-1939 (; England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 (

[21] UK, Royal Navy Registers of Seamen’s Services, 1848-1939 (; FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1929, Aylsham, Vol.4b, p.253 (; Transcript and Index to Wood Norton, Norfolk, Parish Registers, compiled by Keith and Shirley Howell (February 2000), Marriages, 1916 (p.105)

[22] England and Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966, 1973-1995 (

[23] FreeBMD, Quarter to June 1901, St. Faiths, Vol.4b, p.105 (

[24] UK, Royal Marines Registers of Services Index, 1842-1925 (; Victoria, Australia, Assisted and Unassisted Passenger Lists, 1839-1923 (

[25] Australia, Death Index, 1787-1985 (

[26] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1903, St. Faiths, Vol.4b, p.97 (

[27] FreeBMD, Quarter to June 1924, Walsingham, Vol.4b, p.626 (

[28] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1982, Ipswich, Vol.10, p.2308 (; England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007 (

[29] England and Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915, Quarter to December 1905, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p.50 (

[30] Canadian Passenger Lists, 1865-1935 (

[31] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1907, Smallburgh, Vol.4b, p.49 (

[32] England and Wales, Death Index, 1916-2005, Registration August 1993, North Walsham,

[33] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1912, Aylsham, Vol.4b, p.150 (; England and Wales, Death Index, 2007-2015 (

[34] FreeBMD, Quarter to June 1937, Walsingham, Vol.4b, p.639 (

[35] England and Wales, Death Index, 2007-2015 (


Alfred Wright – Wood Norton

Alfred Wright was born in 1895 and baptised on the 8th December 1895, in Wood Norton parish church, the son of William and Jane Wright (see Figure 1).[1]

Figure 1: From the Baptisms Register, Wood Norton, 1895

The British Army WW1 Service Records 1914-1920 survive for Alfred, who gave his age on enlistment as 20 years 2 months, height 5’ 3¼”, chest 35½”, weight 9st 1lb, and his occupation as a ‘horseman’.  Alfred enlisted in Norwich on the 6th November 1915, in the 3/1st Norfolk Yeomanry.  He was posted overseas and left Davenport on the 15th September 1916, arriving in Salonica on the 30th September 1916.   He was transferred from the Norfolk Yeomanry to the 179th Company,  Machine Gun Corps on the 24th January 1917.  On 20th June 1917 he left Salonica, arriving in Alexandria a few days later on the 23rd June 1917.

On the 10th December 1917 the Casualty Form – Active Service[2] records that Alfred had been wounded in action on the 8th December 1917 (a gunshot wound to the abdomen), and had died from his wounds (Alfred had been involved in the fighting to capture Jerusalem).  He was 22 years old.  The Casualty Form notes that he was buried on the 12th December 1917, near the Russian Monastery at Ain Karim (in south-west Jerusalem) (see Figure 2).

Figure 2: Casualty Form – Active Service, for Alfred Wright

The Record of Soldier’s Effects[3] lists two amounts paid in May 1918 to Alfred’s father William, as sole legatee – £10 2s 11d and £3 16s 4d.  The Record of Soldier’s Effects also notes that Alfred died of wounds while in the care of the 2/4th London Field Ambulance, Palestine.  A War Gratuity of £9 was paid to William in November 1919.

At the outbreak of war Palestine was part of the Turkish Empire, but Allied forces did not enter Palestine until December 1916; the advance to Jerusalem took a further year.  By the 21st November 1917, the Egyptian Expeditionary Force had gained a line about five kilometres west of Jerusalem, although the city was spared direct bombardment and attack.   Very severe fighting followed, lasting until the evening of the 8th December, when the city’s prepared defences were captured.  Turkish forces left Jerusalem throughout that night and in the morning of the 9th December 1917 the Turkish forces letter of surrender was handed to the Allies, and Jerusalem was occupied.  The Jerusalem War Cemetery was begun after the occupation of the city, with 270 burials, but was later enlarged to take graves from the battlefields and smaller cemeteries in the neighbourhood.[4]

Alfred’s military headstone (No. 2075) bears the inscription chosen by his parents, Death Divides, But Memory Clings.[5]  Alfred was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.[6]

Further research into Alfred’s family reveals that his father, William Wright was baptised on the 22nd May 1864, in Wood Norton parish church, the son of Richard and Alice Wright.[7]  William married Jane Buck in December 1891 in Wood Norton parish church.[8]  In the 1911 census for Swanton Novers, William is recorded as aged 47 and a bricklayer working on the Estate; he died in 1954, aged 90, and is buried in Wood Norton.  Jane was baptised on the 30th July 1865 in Stibbard parish church, the daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Buck.[9]  She died in 1950, aged 84, and is buried in Wood Norton.

The 1911 census reveals that the family were living in Swanton Novers, near The Bell.  They had eight children (three boys and five girls) who were all living at home when the census was taken:

Alice Baptised: 30th October 1892, Wood Norton.[10]

In the 1911 census, Alice is aged 18 and a school teacher.

Died: 1919 (Watford), aged 26.  Alice is buried in Wood Norton.

Edward Born: 15th July 1894, Wood Norton, and baptised 14th October 1894, Stibbard.[11]

In the 1911 census, Edward is aged 16, and a bricklayer’s labourer.

Died: 1979 (Wood Norton), aged 85.

Alfred Born: 1895, Wood Norton

In the 1911 census, Alfred is aged 15, and a general labourer.

Died: 8th December 1917, aged 22.  Palestine.

Edith Baptised: 11th July 1897, Wood Norton.[12]

In the 1911 census, Edith is aged 14 and at school.

Margaret Baptised: 21st August 1898, Wood Norton.[13]

In the 1911 census, Margaret is aged 12 and at school.

Elsie Baptised: 3rd June 1900, Wood Norton.[14]

In the 1911 census, Elsie is aged 11 and at school.

Mary Born: 1902, Wood Norton.[15]

In the 1911 census, Mary is aged 9.

William Born: 1904, Swanton Novers.[16]

In the 1911 census, William is aged 7.

Died: 1989 (Swanton Novers), aged 85.

The Wood Norton War Memorial includes Alfred’s older brother, Edward, on the list of men who served in WW1, and survived.

A memorial to Alfred is included on the headstone for his elder sister Alice, who died on the 25th February 1919, aged 26 and is buried in Wood Norton churchyard.  The inscription to Alfred reads: Also Alfred, their second son, killed in action on Dec. 8th 1917, buried at Enab in Palestine, aged 22 years.

Beneath the dedication to Alfred is another inscription: Also [in memory of] Arthur Robert Buck, uncle of the above, killed in action in France, May 25th 1918, aged 40 years.  Arthur was Jane Wright’s younger brother. These inscriptions are followed by the words from Alfred’s military headstone, Death Divides but Memory Clings.


[1] FreeBMD, Quarter to December 1895, Aylsham Vol 4b, p77 (; Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1895 (

[2] British Army WW1 Service Records 1914-1920 (

[3] Record of Soldier’s Effects (

[4] CWGC information for the Jerusalem War Cemetery (

[5] CWGC graves headstone schedule and inscription schedule (

[6] Medal Roll Index Cards (

[7] Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1864 (

[8] FreeBMD Quarter to December 1891, Aylsham Vol.4b, p.269 (

[9] Baptism Register, Stibbard, 1865 (; FreeBMD Quarter to September 1865, Walsingham Vol.4b, p.267 (

[10] Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1892 (; Free BMD, Quarter to December 1892, Aylsham Vol.4b, p.70 (

[11] Baptism Register, Stibbard, 1894 (; FreeBMD, Quarter to September 1894, Aylsham Vol.4b, p79 (

[12] Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1897 (; FreeBMD Quarter to June 1897, Aylsham Vol.4b, p.80 (

[13] Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1898 (; FreeBMD Quarter to September 1898, Aylsham Vol.4b, p.78 (

[14] Baptism Register, Wood Norton, 1900 (; FreeBMD Quarter to March 1900, Aylsham Vol.4b, p.88 (

[15] FreeBMD Quarter to March 1902, Aylsham Vol.44b, p.82 (

[16] FreeBMD Quarter to June 1904, Walsingham Vol.4b, p.257 (

Remembering Wilfred George Lake

The team from Wood Norton have shared some more research with us about a man appearing on their war memorial but while they’ve found out lots about Wilfred George Lake if anyone help tell the stories of his siblings it would be wonderful.


Wilfred George Lake was the youngest son of William and Mary Ann Lake, born in Wood Norton and baptised on the 12th April 1896 at All Saints, Wood Norton (see Figure 1).[1]

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