College members who died in 1943
Roger Bainbrigge (1909-1943)
Roger Bainbrigge was born at West Linton in Scotland on 23 February 1909, the only child of the Reverend Prebendary Philip Bainbrigge, and his second wife Beatrice (née Borthwick). He was educated at St Edward’s School, Oxford from 1923 to 1926, where he was a member of the Rugby XV.
Roger Bainbrigge entered Worcester College on 14 October 1927, and achieved 3rd class honours in Modern History in 1930. On leaving Oxford he became a stockbroker at the London Stock Exchange. He married Elizabeth Baldwin on 3 April 1934, who died the following year, one day after the birth of their son Michael. Roger Bainbrigge subsequently married Kathleen Risley in 1937 and they had a son, Angus, the following year.
Following the outbreak of the Second World War, Roger Bainbrigge attended at Officer Training Unit before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Pioneer Corps on 30 June 1941. Lieutenant Roger Bainbrigge was killed in action in Egypt on 24 February 1943, aged 33.
Roger Bainbrigge is buried in Heliopolis War Cemetery, and commemorated on the war memorials of St Edward’s School Oxford, and Worcester College, Oxford.School information courtesy of the Archives of St Edward's School, Oxford.
Bryan Rupert Beckett (1922-1943)
The Hon. Bryan Rupert Beckett was born in London on 23 August 1922, the youngest son of the Rt. Hon. Ralph Beckett, 3rd Baron Grimthorpe, and his first wife, Lady Mary Alice Beckett (née Archdale). He was educated at Eton College until 1940 and came up to Worcester College, Oxford on 11 October 1940. He left Oxford in 1941 for officer training at the Royal Military College Sandhurst, without taking a degree. Officer Cadet Bryan Beckett was killed in a car accident on 11 March 1943, aged 20.
Bryan Beckett is buried at St Helen’s Church, Amotherby, Yorkshire. He is commemorated on the war memorial in the Royal Gallery at the Houses of Parliament, and on the memorials at Eton College and Worcester College, Oxford.School information from 'List of Etonians who fought in the World War 1939-1945'.
John Alistair Christison (1920-1943)
John Alistair Christison was born in Newcastle in 1920, the son of Lilie (née Allan) and Robert Christison. He was educated at Dame Allan’s School, Fenham from 1930 to 1938. He entered Worcester College on 7 October 1938 but left Oxford without taking a degree.
John Christison attended an Officer Cadet Training Unit before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 7th battalion Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) on 12 July 1941. Lieutenant John Christison was killed in action during the battle of Wadi Akarit, in Tunisia, on 6 April 1943, aged 23.
John Christison is buried at Sfax War Cemetery, Tunisia. He is commemorated on his grandfather’s grave at Abbey Church Cemetery, Coupar, Angus, and on the war memorials of Dame Allan’s School and Worcester College, Oxford.School information courtesy of Dame Allan's School Archives; further information from TNA - 7th Battalion Black Watch war diaries, WO 169/10181; and B. S. Barnes, Operation Scipio - the 8th Army at Wadi Akarit (2007).
Mervyn Theodore Lamb (1915-1943)
Mervyn Theodore Lamb was born in Ireland on 22 May 1915, the son of Wing Commander the Reverend Percy Cecil Chalmers Lamb and Kate Avarina (née James). He entered Worcester College on 11 October 1935, and graduated with a pass degree in 1939.
Mervyn Lamb was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry on 8 August 1942 and later transferred to the East Surrey Regiment, joining the 1st Battalion in North Africa on 20 December 1942. 2nd Lieutenant Mervyn Lamb was killed during the Battle of Oued Zarga on 7 April 1943, aged 28.
Mervyn Lamb is buried at Beja War Cemetery in Tunisia and commemorated on the war memorial at Worcester College, Oxford.Further information from TNA - 1st Battalion East Surrey Regiment war diaires, WO 175/519; and David Scott Daniell, History of the East Surrey Regiment Volume IV 1920-1955 (1957).
Nigel de Paiva Henderson-Scott (1920-1943)
Nigel Henderson-Scott entered Worcester College on 7 October 1938 to read Modern History but left without taking a degree in order to enlist in the army. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Scots Guards on 8 March 1941. In April 1943 the 2nd Battalion Scots Guards were advancing on Enfidaville in Tunisia in the final drive to push the German Afrika Corps from North Africa. On 20 April 1943 Lieutenant Nigel Henderson-Scott was leading his carrier patrol close to Enfidaville when he was killed, aged 22.
Nigel Henderson-Scott is buried at Enfidaville War Cemetery in Tunisia and commemorated on the war memorials at Burley, Wellington College, and Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph from George Edinger (ed), Wellington College Roll of Honour 1939-1945 (1949); further information from David Erskine, The Scots Guards 1919-1955 (1956).
Michael George Ralph Nevill (1917-1943)
Michael George Ralph Nevill was born on 19 June 1917, the son of Marjorie (née Nevill) and Percy Llewelyn Nevill. He was educated at Eton College until 1935 before entering Worcester College Oxford on 11 October 1935. He left Oxford without taking a degree.
Following the outbreak of war Michael Nevill attended an Officer Cadet Training Unit before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Scots Guards on 25 May 1940. He was married at Westminster to Maureen Rhodes on 17 July 1940 and they had two sons, David in 1941, and Michael born after his father’s death in 1943.
In February 1943 Michael Nevill embarked with his battalion at the River Clyde on board HMT Samaria, for service in North Africa. Lieutenant Michael Nevill was killed by a German sniper at Crich el Oued in Tunisia, during an attack on the enemy position. He was 25 years old.
Michael Nevill is buried in Massicault War Cemetery in Tunisia, and is commemorated on the war memorials at All Saints Church, Birling, Eton College, and Worcester College, Oxford. In 1953, the Bull pub in Birling was renamed The Nevill Bull in his honour.School information from 'List of Etonians who fought in the World War 1939-1945'; further information from David Erskine, The Scots Guards 1919-1955 (1956).
John Clifford North-Lewis (1913-1943)
After leaving the University of Oxford John North-Lewis became a solicitor, but was commissioned as a Pilot Officer in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve on 15 October 1941. He was promoted to Flying Officer on 1 October 1942, and married to Margaret Taylor the same year.
On 2 May 1943 John North-Lewis and his crew took off from RAF Honeybourne in Worcestershire for a night navigational exercise. They set a course towards the Scottish borders but the air station received a distress message from the aircraft when it was over the sea, as it had suffered an engine failure. Flying Officer John North-Lewis was forced to crash land onto the sea and he and two other crew members were killed. He was 29 years old.
John North-Lewis is buried at St Martin’s Church, Brampton in Cumbria, and is commemorated on the war memorials at Harrow School, and Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph of John North-Lewis in the Kingsley Club, 1935, Worcester College Archives; school information courtesy of the Harrow School Archives; further information from TNA - No. 24 Operational Training Unit Operations book, AIR 29/688/1.
Edward Guy Simonds (1914-1943)
Edward Simonds was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 99th (Buckinghamshire and Berkshire Yeomanry) Field Brigade, Royal Artillery on 30 January 1937 and transferred to the Royal Air Force with the rank of Pilot Officer on 24 January 1942. On 20 May 1943 Edward Simonds and his crew from No. 1 Overseas Aircraft Delivery Unit took off from RAF Portreath in Cornwall in a Blenheim aircraft for a ferry flight to Gibraltar. During the flight they were incepted and shot down by a German fighter with the loss of the entire crew. Flying Officer Edward Simonds was aged 29.
His commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial and the war memorials at Wellington College and Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph from George Edinger (ed), Wellington College Roll of Honour 1939-1945 (1949); further information from TNA - No.1 Overseas Aircraft Delivery Unit operations book, AIR 29/471/6.
Richard Maxwell Hanson (1920-1943)
Richard Maxwell Hanson was born in London on 21 May 1920, the only son of Beatrice (née Heald) and Lieutenant Colonel John Hanson OBE, a chartered accountant. He was educated at Imperial Service College, Windsor (now part of Haileybury) from 1933 to 1938, where he was a house captain, a school prefect, and captain of the 1st Cricket XI and the 1st Rugby XV. He entered Worcester College on 7 October 1938, but left without taking a degree.
Richard Hanson attended the 170th Officer Cadet Training Unit before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Gordon Highlanders on 1 February 1941. He transferred to the Royal Artillery with the same rank on 18 December 1941, and transferred to the Gilder Pilot Regiment on 4 March 1942. On 9 July 1943 the Allies began Operation Husky, the invasion of Sicily, with the dropping of paratroopers supported by glider borne infantry. Richard Hanson was one of the gilder pilots and took off with his crew member and three men of the 2nd (Airborne) Battalion South Staffordshire Regiment on board. After being released by the tug aircraft, the glider was forced to ditch in the sea. Lieutenant Richard Hanson insisted that the other men take the available life belts, and was drowned while attempting to swim to shore. He was 23 years old.
Richard Hanson is commemorated on the Cassino Memorial, and on the war memorials at Imperial Service College, and at Worcester College, Oxford.School information courtesy of the Haileybury School Archives, further information from TNA - Glider Pilot Regiment Casualties Operation Husky, WO 361/943.
George Redvers Hudson Banks Stewart (1921-1943)
George Stewart entered Worcester College, Oxford, on 13 October 1939 with an exhibition, but left to teach at Trinity College, Glenalmond in 1940. In 1941 he gave up his place at Worcester College, without taking a degree, and joined the armed forces. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) on 14 March 1942, and was subsequently wounded at the Battle of El Alamein.
On 7 July 1943 the 5th Battalion Black Watch landed at Sicily and advanced inland. On 21 July 1943 they relieved the 5/7th Battalion Gordon Highlanders on the right of the village of Sferro. On 23 July 1943 they came under heavy shell fire, during which Lieutenant George Stewart was killed. He was 22 years old.
George Stewart is buried at Catania War Cemetery on Sicily and commemorated on the war memorial at Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph, school and other information courtesy of Glenalmond College Archives; further information from TNA - 5th Battalion Black Watch war diaries, WO 169/10179.
Andrew Bruce Warwick Illius (1922-1943)
Andrew Illius entered Worcester College on 19 April 1940 to study law. During his time at the College he was a member of the Buskins, the College drama society, and served as its President for Michaelmas Term 1941. He did not return to the College after December 1941, instead joining the RAF. He trained as a pilot in the United States, passing out of his course with the Gold Medal.
Andrew Illius was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on 10 November 1942 and promoted to Flying Officer on 10 May 1943. On 23 August 1943 he and his crew from 156 Squadron took off from RAF Warboys for a raid on Berlin. Their Lancaster crashed in the Tegeler See in the northwest of Berlin and exploded on impact. Flying Officer Andrew Illius was killed instantly. He was 21 years old.
Andrew Illius is buried at Berlin War Cemetery in Germany. He is commemorated on the war memorial at the Holy Apostles Church, Cheltenham, and on the memorials at Oundle School and Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph and school information courtesy of Oundle School Archives; further information from W. R. Chorley, Bomber Command Losses of the Second World War (2005); and Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt, The Bomber Command War Diaires 1939-1945 (1985).
Cyril Harry Hallett (1919-1943)
Cyril Harry Hallett was born in Oxford on 7 October 1919, the son of Alice (née Brown) and Harry Hallett, a goods carman for a railway company. He was employed by Worcester College as the ‘Senior Common Room boy’.
Cyril Hallett married Vera Cox in Oxford in 1940. They had a daughter, Linda, born in 1941, and lived in Upper Wolvercote. He served as a Private in the 7th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, and landed on the beaches of Salerno, Italy on 9 September 1943. By 11 September they were in the front line and were under shell and mortar fire throughout the day. Private Cyril Hallett was killed in action during the following day, 12 September 1943. He was 23 years old.
Cyril Hallett is buried at Salerno War Cemetery, Italy, and commemorated on the war memorial at Worcester College, Oxford.Further information from TNA - 7th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Regiment war diaries, WO 169/10278.
Andrew Herbert Dixon (1918-1943)
Andrew Dixon was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Manchester Regiment, but was diagnosed with cancer in 1943 while serving in Malta. He underwent an operation there, and was treated with X-ray therapy but to no avail. He was evacuated to Edinburgh where he died on 5 October 1943, aged 25.
In his will he left the sum of £50 per annum for an Exhibition in either Classics or History to students at Worcester College, to be offered in the first instance to persons educated at Glenalmond College.
Andrew Dixon is commemorated on the war memorials at Glenalmond College, the Inner Temple and at Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph of Andrew Dixon in the Worcester College 2nd Torpid, 1937, Worcester College Archives; school and other information courtesy of Glenalmond College Archives.
John Roger Bodley Wright (1919-1943)
Roger Wright enlisted as a Private in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in September 1939, before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry in the summer of 1940. He joined the 7th Battalion of his regiment on 27 June 1940. After two years of training in England he embarked for overseas service in August 1942, the same month he became engaged to Daphne Dunkerley. Roger Wright served firstly in Iraq before deploying to Tunisia for the final stages of the North African campaign where they saw action at Enfidaville. He was appointed as A Company Commander on 25 January 1943. On the conclusion of the fighting in Tunisia a further period of training followed before the Battalion was posted to Italy where he saw action in heavy fighting in October and November 1943 and was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his actions there.
Captain Roger Wright was severely wounded in action at San Clemente on 10 November 1943 while making a personal reconnaissance. He was evacuated to a dressing station where he was operated on, but he died on 13 November 1943 without regaining consciousness. He was 24 years old.
Roger Wright is buried at Naples War Cemetery in Italy and commemorated on the war memorials at the Dragon School, Bradfield College, and Worcester College, Oxford.Photograph and school information from 'Memorials of the Old Boys of the Dragon School' (1948); further information from TNA: Recommendation for DSO, WO 373/4/16; 7th Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Regiment war diaries, WO 169/10278.
William Henry Caulfeild (1911-1930)
William Henry Caulfeild was born in County Limerick, Ireland on 7 October 1911, the youngest son of Mary (née Bacon) and George Blake Caulfeild. He was educated at Forest School, London from 1925 to 1929, where he was a House Monitor and played fives, cricket and football.
William Caulfeild entered Worcester College on 10 October 1930 and spent three years at the College, although he left without taking a degree. He married Lorna Wilkinson and during the 1930s he and his wife worked as hoteliers at Villefranche in the south of France. The family had returned to London by the outbreak of war and William Caulfeild attended the Officer Producing Centre for the Royal Army Service Corps before being commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the RASC on 18 May 1940.
Major William Caulfeild died on 2 December 1943, aged 32, in India. He is buried at Chittagong War Cemetery (now in Bangladesh) and commemorated on the war memorials at Forest School and Worcester College, Oxford.School information courtesy of Forest School Archives.
William Hugh Bailey (1911-1943)
William Hugh Bailey was born on 16 May 1911 in Penrith, Cumberland, the third son of Jessie (née Purves) and Richard Bailey, a book keeper in an estate office. He attended Worksop College, and was then Assistant Master at King William’s College on the Isle of Man before entering Worcester College, Oxford on 9 October 1931, aged 20. William Bailey achieved 4th class honours in French and Spanish in 1934. After graduating he taught at Wolverhampton Grammar School.
William Bailey was commissioned as a Sub Lieutenant in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve on 26 June 1942 and was posted to HM Trawler Rysa. On 8 December 1943 HM Trawler Rysa was mine sweeping off the Sardinian coast near the Maddalena archipelago in order to keep sea lanes open for supply ships supporting the Allied campaign in Italy. During the operation the ship struck a mine, which exploded killing nineteen of the crew, including Lieutenant William Bailey. He was 32 years old.
William Bailey is commemorated on the Lowestoft Naval Memorial, and on the war memorial at Worcester College, Oxford.Further information from TNA - Navael Casualties HM Trawler Rysa, ADM 358/1953.