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Promotions in WWII
Notes from the newspapers

Lt. LeeThe Rushden Echo & Argus, 13th August, 1943, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Commission Won - Success for Rushden Artilleryman

  A commission as 2nd Lieutenant in the R.A. has been gained by Walter Sidney Lee, of 31, Tennyson-road, Rushden.

  Lieut. Lee, who is now 25 years old, has been serving since March, 1938, and is at present attached to an anti-tank regiment.  Prior to joining the Army he worked for Messrs. Allebone and Sons, boot manufacturers, and was a keen sportsman.  He is the only son of Mr. and Mrs. W. Lee, who also have two daughters, both engaged on war work.

Pilot Officer Fred Newell
Sgt-Pilot JacquesThe Rushden Echo, 28th May, 1943, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Won His Wings - Rushden Airman’s Success in Canada
Mrs. M. Jacques, of 100, High-street South, Rushden, has learned that her husband, Sergt. Pilot Jeffrey Lewis Jacques, R.A.F.V.R., has gained his wings while in training at Weyburn, Canada. He is 24 years of age and has served for 14 months, eight of them at Weyburn. He formerly worked with his father, a plumber, and was the assistant cub master of Rushden St. Mary’s Wolf Cubs. His parents are Mr. and Mrs. A. Jacques, of 84 Bedford-road, Rushden.

The Rushden Echo, 18th June, 1943, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Pilot Officer BoneWon His Wings - Rushden Airman Also Gains Commission
News has been received by Mrs. M. Bone, of 119, Washbrook-road, Rushden, that her son, Corporal W. J. Bone, aged 25, of the R.A.F., now in South Africa, has gained his wings and has been granted a commission. He joined in 1939 as a general clerk, and served in that capacity in France, and was at St. Nazaire when France capitulated. He was among the last to get away, the Germans being in the next village. After further service as a clerk at a home station, he volunteered for training as a pilot. He was sent to South Africa to do his practical training.

Pilot Officer Bone was educated at the Intermediate School, Rushden, and worked for a time in a grocery department of the Rushden Co-operative Society, and then for a year or two he was employed by Messrs. H. W. Chapman, Ltd., carton manufacturers, at their Irthlingborough branch.

The Rushden Echo & Argus, 23rd July, 1943, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Commission for Air-Gunner - Rushden Man’s Fine Record of Flights
Ronald Cox
A commission as Pilot Officer in the R.A.F. has been gained by Ronald Cox, only son of Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Cox, of 45, Park-avenue, Rushden.

Joining the Air Force in February 1940, P/O Cox became a sergeant air-gunner and took part in scores of operational flights over enemy territory. During a well-earned rest period recently he has been serving as a gunnery instructor.

After attending Rushden Newton-road School, where he was in the hands of Coun. J. Allen, he completed his education at Kettering Grammar School under the late Mr. J. I. Scott. He afterwards worked in Rushden Co-operative Society’s furnishing department (Higham-road) and then obtained a position with the Worksop Co-operative Society.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 4th February, 1944, transcribed by Gill Hollis

A.T.C. Boy Wins Commission - Rushden Squadron is Proud of Him
  Latest ex-member of the Rushden A.T.C. Squadron to win a commission in the Royal Air Force is Pilot Officer John Edward Drage, described by his old A.T.C. chief Ft.-Lt. A. H. Whitton, as “one of the best boys we ever had.”

  P.O. Drage is the only son of Mr. and Mrs. G. E. Drage, of 47, St. Margaret’s-avenue, Rushden.  After school days at Alfred-street he worked for the London Central Meat Co., and when the Rushden A.T.C. Squadron was formed he became one of the original members.  He had less than nine months’ pre-service training, but in that time gained a useful degree of proficiency in drill, navigation, signalling and aircraft recognition.

  This all proved of value to him when he joined the R.A.F. in March, 1942.  He became a sergeant last June, and his commission has just come through.  His air work is as a navigator under Bomber Command, and he has already made a number of operational flights.

  The Rushden Squadron is particularly proud of P/O Drage as an example of what can be done – with the help of the A.T.C. – without the advantage of secondary education.

F/O LaughtonRushden Echo & Argus, 11th February 1944, transcribed by Kay Collins

Air Officer’s Promotion – Formerly Employed by Rushden Firm
The promotion of Pilot Officer Ernest Eaton Laughton, R.A.F., to the rank of Flying Officer took place recently in N. Ireland.

F/O Laughton is 23 years of age and the son of Mr and Mrs H Laughton of 38, Wollaston-road, Irchester. He is married and his wife is in Ireland with him. Previously employed as a carpenter by Messrs Sanders and Sanders, of Rushden, he has been with the R.A.F. since the beginning of the war and was commissioned about nine months ago.

As a boy he attended the Irchester Council School and was connected with the Irchester Boys’ Brigade.

Rushden Echo & Argus, 17th March 1944

Gordon SeamarksWings Won - Rushden ex-ATC Boy Now Fighter Pilot

News has been received by Mr and Mrs Seamarks, of 13 Kings-road, Rushden, that their son Gordon has gained his wings as a fighter pilot in Canada, where he has been training since August 1943.

Aged 19, Sergt. Pilot Seamarks was an enthusiastic member of the Rushden A.T.C. before he joined the R.A.F.  He attended the Intermediated School where he won several medals for high jumping and qualified for the all-England sports at Derby.

After leaving school and up to the time of joining the R.A.F. he worked in the office of Messrs Cattell and Chater, accountants. His sister Beryl is in the W.A.A.F. training as a wireless operator.

LAC PerkinsRushden Echo & Argus, 17th March 1944

Won Commission - Rushden Airman’s Success in Canada

Mr. and Mrs. H. Perkins, of 55 Park-avenue, Rushden, have learned that their only son, L.A.C. H. E. Perkins, has gained his commission while in training in Canada.

Aged 19, Pilot Officer Perkins left Wellingborough School in October 1942, and took a short preliminary course at Oxford. At the completion of this he became a member of the R.A.F., and later went to Canada, where he received his commission in February.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 23rd June, 1944, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Another Pilot - Rushden Fleet Airman Gains Wings in Florida

  A cable from Midshipman James B. Neville, R.N.V.R., Fleet Air Arm, in Florida, U.S.A., to his parents at Rushden on Monday notified them that he has received his pilot’s wings.  Midshipman Neville was 19 years of age last Saturday and was commissioned a fortnight previously.  He is the elder son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Neville, of 10, Windmill-road.

  In the service since April, 1943, he went to America last September.  Formerly he worked in the R.U.D.C. offices, belonged to the Home Guard and attended Rushden Adult School.  He was educated at the Higham Ferrers School and Wellingborough Grammar School.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 21st July, 1944, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Rushden Man on Ferry Control
Promoted to Warrant Officer
  For the past twelve months on ferry control from this country to Algiers and Gibraltar and back the active R.A.F. career of Warrant Officer Horace Roberts, elder son of Mrs. F. Roberts, of 20, Irchester-road, Rushden, has been interesting.

  Joining the R.A.F. in 1939, he went to the Middle East in 1941, and returned here from one tour of bombing operations in 1942.

  Another tour, bringing his total operations up to about 58, was done out there, and he came back again early in 1943.  The airman encountered one stroke of bad luck in November, 1942, when he was badly wounded, accidentally, by a hand grenade.  In addition he has been mentioned in dispatches.

  During this period he held the rank of Flight/Sergt. and was promoted to Warrant Officer two months ago.  Before service, he was employed at Messrs. John White’s Newton-road factory.  He used to attend Rushden Adult School.  He was educated at the Alfred-street school and is now 23 years of age.

  His younger brother, Pte. E. L. Roberts, R.A.S.C., is serving in France.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 15th September, 1944, transcribed by Gill Hollis

Wireless Operator and Navigator - Airman’s Promotion in Canada

Sgt Bazeley  A wing and promotion to Sergt.-Navigator-Wireless Operator have been gained by Ronald Wm. Bazeley, R.A.F., of Rushden, who is training in Canada.  The news reached his wife at 10, St. Peter’s-avenue, Rushden, on Monday.

  Sergt. Bazeley is 29 years of age and has been in the R.A.F. nearly two years and in Canada since February.  Before joining up he was a member of the A.T.C. and worked for Messrs. John White, Ltd., at the Lime-street factory.  He was educated at the Intermediate school and is the youngest son of Mr. J. Bazeley, of Fletcher-road, Rushden.

Sgt perkinsRushden Echo & Argus, 10th November 1944, transcribed by Kay Collins

Air Navigator – Solicitors’ Clerk Wins his Wings
Well-known in Rushden, where he was employed in the office of Messrs. J. T. Parker, Son, and A. N. Groome, solicitors, Sergt. W. D. (“Don”) Perkins, only son of Mrs. W. Perkins, of 119 Finedon-road, Irthlingborough, has gained his wing as a navigator, following training in Rhodesia and South Africa. He joined the R.A.F. in March 1943, at the age of 19, proceeding overseas shortly afterwards.

One of the earliest members of the A.T.C., he held the rank of Flight Sergeant in C Flight, No. 378 Mannock Squadron.

Don LoakesRushden Echo & Argus, 17th November 1944, transcribed by Kay Collins

Fleet Airman – Rushden Man Wins Wings in Canada

P.O. Donald Loakes, Fleet Air Arm, has cabled from Canada to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Loakes, of “Shirlyn,” Shirley-road, Rushden, Rushden, to say that he has gained his wings.

Aged 18½ years, P.O. Loakes is a telegraphist – air gunner. He has been in the service for 12 months and went to Canada in February. Formerly he was employed by Messrs. A. Sargent and Sons. He was educated at the Intermediate School, played in the junior football and attended St. Peter’s Church Sunday School.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 15th December, 1944

Major BondRose From Ranks - Rushden Major Serving In India

  With 23 years’ Army service to his credit, promotion to the rank of Major has been bestowed upon Capt. Stanley Bond, Northamptonshire Regiment, who originally joined the Army as a private.

  Major Bond comes from Rushden, where his wife and their two daughters live at 120, St. Margaret’s-avenue.  He is the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. R. Bond, of 3, Washbrook-road. Aged 40 years, Major Bond has been in India for the past six years, and also served there for five years at the beginning of his Army career.

  Two brothers are in the R.A.F., one in the Army and a sister in the N.A.A.F.I.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 26th January, 1945

Naval Promotion
Rushden Sportsman Becomes Sub-Lieutenant

Mr Clark  Promotion to Sub-Lieut. (Special) in the R.N.V.R. has been gained by Mr. Herbert A. Clark, of 22, Brookfield-road, Rushden, the commission dating from January 1st, 1945.

  Sub-Lieut. Clark has had much interesting experience, for after joining the Royal Navy in January, 1942, he served almost three years as a Coder, spending 27 months on Combined Operations H.Q. Ship and taking part in the North African and Normandy landings and all those in the Mediterranean.  For this service he has gained the North African rosette and 1939-43 Star.

  Before joining the Colours he was assistant works manager for the Wholesale and Export Shoe Co., Irchester.  Active in sport, he played cricket with Rushden Baptists and hockey with Rushden Town.  A member of Park-road Baptist Church, he was a superintendent of the Highfield Baptist Sunday School from its opening in 1936.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 26th January, 1945

Sub-Lieutenant - Commission for Rushden Musician

cyril  Promotion to Sub-Lieutenant of the Special Branch, R.N.V.R., comes to Mr. Cyril George Cave, of 9, Montague-street, Rushden, who has gone through some of the most hazardous sea operations of the war.  The commission dates from January 22nd and follows service as a Petty Officer.

  Joining the Navy in July 1940, Sub-Lieut. Cave served in the Battle of Norway, the Battle of Crete, the Syrian Campaign and the Tobruk and Malta convoys.  In March, 1941, his ship, the Dido-class cruiser Naiad, was sunk in the Mediterranean, and with the help of a lifebelt he swam around for three hours before being picked up by a destroyer.  He then served on the Valiant, and for the last 18 months he has been an instructor at the Royal Naval Barracks, Portsmouth.

  Born at Rushden, he showed high ability as a musician and became organist of Wollaston Parish Church and assistant organist at St. Mary’s, Rushden, taking the A.R.C.O. at an early age.  While in the navy he has been pianist with a concert party and a band.

  In peace-time he was on the grocery staff of the Rushden Co-operative Society.

Lieut. ShipmanRushden Echo & Argus, 9th March 1945

Indian Service - Further Promotion for Rushden Officer

Further promotion to First Lieutenant has been achieved by Mr. G. P. S. Shipman, youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Shipman, of 87, Hayway, Rushden. Lieut. Shipman joined up in October, 1943, from Wellingborough Grammar School. He went to India in December, 1943, after training at the Indian Military Academy, was commissioned in the Royal Indian Army Service Corps in August 1944. He was 19 years old last November.

Rushden Echo & Argus, 16th March 1945

War Prisoner Promoted - Rushden Craftsman

A prisoner of war in Germany, Sergt. Clifford W. Case, R.A.P.V.R., has been promoted to Flt. Sergt.

The news came from the Air Ministry to Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Scroxton, of 8, Portland-road, of whom he is the nephew and adopted son.

Sergt. Case is 34 years of age and joined the R.A.F. in Match, 1943 and became a Flight Engineer in a Lancaster aircraft. He has been a prisoner for 12 months. Previously he was a carpenter for Messrs. Sanders Ltd.

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