SRY Somaliland 1944

Discussion in 'North Africa & the Med' started by noggin1969, Aug 25, 2019.

  1. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Has anybody details on this man or any ideas why he may have been in Dire Dawa I think the CWGC has it spelt as Dire Daua unless this is another town in Somaliland.

    Serjeant HOPEWELL, FRANK
    Service Number 545597

    Died 27/10/1944

    Aged 37

    Nottinghamshire Yeomanry
    Royal Armoured Corps
    HARGEISA WAR CEMETERY C. 21.

    Named on the Newark parish Roll of Honour. Son of Joseph and Martha Hopewell of 6 Mount Lane Newark. Husband of Kathleen Margaret Hopewell nee Vamplew married 1930.
     
  2. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Well-Known Member

    Wiki refers to Dire Dawa today being part of Ethiopia, but says:
    See: Dire Dawa - Wikipedia

    The town was then on the only railway line (French built) from Djibouti to Addis Adaba, so had some strategic value. My recollection is that neither Ogaden or what is now Somaliland were ever truly quiet or free from bandits.

    Curious that he is buried in Hargeisa, which had then been part of British Somaliland. Could it be that there was a local preference for burial in what was then the British Empire, as distinct from an occupied region of an independent nation, Ethiopia.

    The CWGC entry for the cemetery shows that deaths occurred after military action against Ethiopia, which could also mean it was unhealthy. See: Cemetery

    It is a puzzle as there is a smaller CWGC @ Dire Dawa: Cemetery
     
  3. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Got this reply from another site : ' In '41, Major Basil Ringrose of the Sherwood Rangers took two Sgts to Abyssinia with a bag of gold to raise an army to fight off the Italians...which they succeeded in doing... I believe Hopewell was one of these Sgts and remained there.' Seems along time to be kicking your heels though. I've ordered his death cert , but I'm trying to save myself £30 at the MOD ( they seem to be on a go slow atm anyway ).
     
  4. Guy Hudson

    Guy Hudson Looker-upper

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  5. BFBSM

    BFBSM Very Senior Member

    From FindMyPast:


    The record states he died due to Malaria.

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  6. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for that , nothing showing on Ancestry.com. Still strange he should be there , when the rest where in Italy and France. Unless the had been suffering with malaria for a while and stayed behind incapacitated or doing other duties.
     
  7. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Well-Known Member

    A general remark follows. This Wiki explains why the British were still there in 1944: Anglo-Ethiopian Agreement - Wikipedia

    A online article could help to: THE ROOT CAUSES OF POLITICAL PROBLEMS IN THE OGADEN, 1942-1960 on JSTOR and this: British Somaliland

    I doubt there is an Official History being such a small "sideshow". Perhaps worth trying? See: War Office: East Africa Command: Papers | The National Archives

    This is a pointer to an article, probably behind a pay wall, but the sources are listed: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00263206.2014.933424?mobileUi=0&journalCode=fmes20
     

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