New CWGC Commemorations 1st Feburary 2017

Discussion in 'Non-Commemorated War Dead' started by chrisharley9, Feb 1, 2017.

  1. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    CWGC added the following casualties to the WW2 War Dead Roll today.

    The following merchant seamen died 15.01.45 when Hopper Barge ‘D’ was sunk by a mine in the River Mersey. All are commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London

    BOOTH, Eric
    Boy Age 16

    BRENNAN, Michael
    Fireman Age 40

    LEE, Richard
    Master Age 48

    MURRAY, Robert
    Chief Mate Age 54

    ROWE, Albert
    Engineer Age 61


    Volunteer for all Chris Harley.
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  2. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    Chris, good to see this at long last - I remember Billy McGee putting in a hell of a lot of effort on this case and many others and being frustrated by the CWGC even with the evidence submitted to them.

    What has caused the change of mind?

  3. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member


    When it first got started with IFCP there seemed to be at CWGC a misunderstanding that those of the MN who died in inshore waters were not eligible for commemoration. This has now been swept away & those that died in those circumstances are now to be put forward. If you know of any more please let me know.

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  4. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    Thanks Chris.

  5. ritsonvaljos

    ritsonvaljos Senior Member

    At times, and especially for new commemorations the CWGC can be most discouraging. In this instance, presumably this was a German mine and hence their deaths were due to enemy action?
  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery

    I would imagine that they will go on the addenda panel.
    The addenda panel is currently being refurbished .
  7. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Well done by everyone involved - a great result
  8. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    I fought this case with the CWGC for over two years started back in 2009 and was initially rejected on the "Home Waters" cause of loss, which has since been removed from the criteria. After arguing the case once more and even submitting an eye witness report and death certificates of two of the bodies recovered stating they had died from war related injuries had they were rejected due to the fact they were not supposedly covered by the Merchant Navy Pensions Act, another ridiculous criteria, though I was informed if I could trace any next of kin for just one of those named to prove the family had received any form of pension they would all be accepted. This proved unsuccessful. You can read the correspondence I had with the Commission all those years back at the link below.

    Finally glad they have the commemoration they deserve, but it is a sad affair that it has taken eight years.

    Lest We Forget!
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  9. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Thanks for your reply Billy.

    Today I have had confirmation from Halton Council that Robert Murray & Eric Booth are buried in Widnes Cemetery. Eric Booth's grave is unmarked.
  10. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    Cheers Chris,

    Any chance you can get an official document copy of his grave reference number from the Council, or pass on the details to me to look into obtaining an official MN war grave headstone for Eric Booth.

    Attached are copies of the original Death Certificates I obtained on both men back in 2009 stating they were killed by enemy action, which was ignored by the Commission due to them invoking the Merchant Navy Pension Act, which the crew were deemed not to be part of. Just another ridiculous part of the official commemoration act the CWGC are governed by, where common sense has now prevailed after all these years.

    Hopper-Barge-D-Booth.jpg Hopper-Barge-D-Murray.jpg
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  11. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    Found in my old correspondence the plot number for both of those buried ashore.

    Eric Booth - Plot No.- 3378 8C
    Robert Murray - Plot No. - 1320 3U
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  12. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Probably was a German mine, but it would not matter as if they had struck an allied mine the increased war risk clause would have come in to play.
  13. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Date of Death:
    Merchant Navy
    Hopper Barge "D" (Liverpool)
    Grave Reference:
    Sec. 8C. Grave 3378.
    Commemoration Moved From Tower Hill Memorial.
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  14. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Sorry for misleading people, but it is Robert Murray's grave that is unmarked.
  15. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Chief Mate
    Date of Death:
    Between 15/01/1945 and 16/01/1945
    Merchant Navy
    Hopper Barge "D" (Liverpool)
    Grave Reference:
    Sec. 3U. Grave 1320.


    Recent research has shown that Chief Mate Murray is buried here. The Commission is in the process of producing a headstone to mark his grave.

    Commemoration Moved From UK BOR.
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