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Information and photograph from Clive Wood, 2008
Elsie Priestley

20424 R E Special Depot (Haynes Park) Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps

Elsie Priestley 1895 - 1918

Elsie was the oldest child of George and Elizabeth Priestley, born in 1895. George and Elizabeth both came from Barton-in-the-Beans in Nottinghamshire and moved to Rushden on their marriage in 1893 in order to find work. They lived at 34 Albion Place throughout their married life. Elsie became a member of the Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps in the Great War. She died on 30 October 1918, just two weeks before the end of the War, in the County Hospital Bedford. Cause of death is given as influenza and double broncho-pneumonia, contracted during the influenza epidemics, which were rife at that time. Elsie is commemorated in the Five Sisters Chapel in York Minster, where there is a memorial to all the women who gave their lives in war. She is buried in Rushden cemetery, in a grave with her parents who died in the 1940's, where her brother George is also commemorated.

Her brother George also died in the Great War. There were four other siblings — Nellie, who married Cyril Neville and had one son Richard; Maud, who married Sydney Sumpter, no children; Lizzie, who married Charles Edmund (Eddie) Ekins and had three children, Eddie junior, Bob (deceased) and Mary; and Leslie, who married Sylvia Margaret Bailey and had one son, David (deceased).


Rushden Echo, 1st November 1918, transcribed by Kay Collins

The Death took place at the Bedford County Hospital on Tuesday last of Miss Elsie Priestley, daughter of Mr and Mrs George Priestley, of Albion-place, Rushden. Deceased, who was 23 years of age, succumbed to pneumonia. She had been serving in Queen Mary’s Army Auxiliary Corps.

gravestone left: Kerbstone on grave C.177 Rushden cemetery

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