Thurrock in WW1: On this day, these Thurrock men gave their lives

PRIVATE 8574 WALTER KNOPP aged 29, of 2 Trilby Terrace, South Ockendon, Essex serving with the ‘B’ Coy, 2nd Bn. Durham Light Infantry, landed at St Nazaire in France on the 10th September 1914 with the 6th Division at the outbreak of WW1, and was Killed In Action during ‘The Battle of the Armentieres’ on the 13th October 1914.

Walter is commemorated on the Memorial at PLOEGSTEERT MEMORIAL in Belgium.


In October 1914, the 10th Cruiser Squadron was deployed in the North Sea as part of efforts to stop German warships from attacking a troop convoy from Canada. On 15 October, the squadron was on patrol off Aberdeen. Hawke stopped at 9:30 am to pick up mail from her sister ship Endymion After recovering the Mail Boat, Hawke proceeded to rejoin the squadron when at 10:30 a single torpedo from the German submarine U-9, struck her and she quickly capsized. The destroyer SWIFT was dispatched from SCAPA FLOW to search for Hawke and found a raft carrying one officer and twenty-one men, while a boat with a further forty-nine survivors was rescued by a Norwegian steamer. 524 officers and men died, including the ship’s captain, Hugh P. E. T. Williams, with only 70 survivors (one man died of his wounds on 16 October).


Stoker 1st SS/106968 Herbert Plume BARNES Aged 26 of West Tilbury

L/Seaman G BISHOP of Tilbury

A/Seaman SS/190567 James COWLEY aged 36 of Tilbury

These men are commemorated on the CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL, Chatham, Kent

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