Three Holes World War II

World War II in Three Holes

Three Holes Soldiers’ fund.

During the Second World War, a committee raised money for service men and women from Three Holes. If they were still in England, the committee sent them the money. If they were abroad or were Prisoners of War, the money was held in trust until they came home. Nelson Watson was MC and chief organiser of whist drives, which were held in an old house at the top of the Oddfellow’s allotments opposite the present hall. The house had been papered and smartened up, but was still full of fleas! They also held fetes.

The garden fete for the Soldiers' Fund, held in Large’s Bakery field

The garden fete for the Soldiers' Fund, held in Large’s Bakery field

Mrs Mahalia Large is in the centre with bouquet. She gave a doll, as a guess-the-name competition. Anne Maria Watson was the only person in the village who knew her name and guessed she would use it! She won the doll and gave it to Audrey’s cousin Mary Dockerty.]

The Home Guard

The Home Guard included Christchurch, Three Holes, Lakesend, Lots Bridge and Tipp’s End. When it was first formed, it was called the local Defence Force (LDF) and then changed to the Home Guard. The Colonel was Chris Clarke of Upwell, who had been in the First World War. The Lieutenant was Bernard West (George West’s father). They used to meet at the West’s house in Christchurch on a Sunday before they walked to church for church parade. They were drilled by a Son Turner who lived in Christchurch and he had been a sergeant in one of the Guards Regiments in the First World War. They used to patrol the villages at night and took it in turn to be up all night. They went on manoeuvres at
weekends, usually around this area. They were highly motivated and very skilled.

George West remembers:

‘The Home Guard did their manoeuvres by whistles. Jim West and I used to hide in the shed and occasionally would blow the whistle and mess them up. We would have been in big trouble if they had caught us!’

Three Holes men and women who served in the forces, 1939 – 1945.

Those who served in the forces in the Second World War included Derek Allen, Hugh Beckett, Ted Cornwell (POW), Ernie Cousins, Son Crampton, Ernie Fiske, Jack Fiske, Bert Forth, Fred Forth, George Goodrum (P of W), Albert Hunt, Wally Hunt, Arthur Jermey (POW), Hubby Jermey, Stan Jarvis, Maisie Roofe, Dick Thorpe, Herbie Tombleson, John Tombleson, Jack Warby, Ted Warby, Hazel Watkinson (Fire Services), Alf Waterfield, Ken Waterfield, Levi Waterfield, Bill Williams, Laura Williams, Louis Youngs.

Three Holes People killed in action 1935–1945

The Ely Cathedral Second World War Book of Remembrance lists the following from Three Holes:

Jack Roland Bellamy, son of Sidney Albert & Ada Bellamy, of Poulter’s Drove, Three Holes Bridge. He served with the 2 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery, and died on 24th October 1944, aged 21. Cemetery: Farenza War Cemetery, Italy.

Norman Lionel Parker was the son of John and Emma Parker, of Sherlock House, Three Holes and husband of Freda Evelyn Joan Parker. He was in the 250 Tank Delivery Squadron, Royal Armoured Corps, and died on 26th April 1943, aged 20. Cemetery: Medjez-el-Bab War Cemetery, Tunisia.

Ernest Nelson Watson was the son of Hannah Mary Elizabeth Watson, and stepson of William Kent; husband
of Barbara Lily Watson, of Addington, Buckinghamshire. He served as a rear gunner in Lancaster bombers for the 630 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, and died on Tuesday 8 August 1944, aged 21. Cemetery: St.
Valery-En-Caux Franco-British Cemetery, Seine-Maritime, France.

Leave a Comment