Greatness Cemetery Guided Walk on 9 November

We’re pleased to announce that following the success of last year’s Great War guided walks at Greatness Cemetery, we will be leading a group on Saturday 9 November from 11.00 until 12.30.

The walk is free and available to all, including children aged ten and above. Please bear in mind that some of the ground we will be walking is uneven and may be muddy depending on the weather, so suitable footwear and clothing is advisable.

Local historian Matthew Ball will speak about the Great War, telling a diverse range of stories regarding local people buried in the cemetery, from a Crimean veteran who appeared at early recruitment meetings, to a local victim of a Zeppelin raid, a Conscientious Objector’s family, and officers and men of The (Queen’s Own) Royal West Kent Regiment.

The tour includes graves in the care of The Commonwealth War Graves Commission and many private memorials.

To book, or for any other queries, please email matt@sevenoaksww1.org

 

 

An Invitation to a Memorial Service for Bridget Aurea Lambarde, Tuesday 5 March

We are pleased to have organised a memorial to a local nurse who served throughout the war on the hundredth anniversary of her death during the influenza pandemic. Bridget Aurea Teresa Lambarde (known as Aurea), is buried in a wargrave with a private memorial in the churchyard at St Mary’s Riverhead.

Aurea had served with the Kent Reserve Voluntary Aid Detachment and was commandant at St John’s VAD Hospital from October 1914 until July 1915.

Aurea Lambarde

Aurea was born in 1889 in Ireland and was the elder daughter of Major William Gore Lambarde. William Lambarde was the last owner of Bradbourne House and estate in Sevenoaks, whic was sold in 1927. Lambarde Road in Sevenoaks is named after the family.

She died from pneumonia whilst serving at the Royal Naval Hospital, Portland in Dorset. The inscription on her grave reads

‘In loving memory of Bridget Aurea Teresa Lambarde, elder daughter of William Gore and Florence Lambarde of Bradbourne Hall, Riverhead, who died March 5th A.D. 1919 aged 29 years’.

As a commandant at one of the town’s VAD hospitals Aurea oversaw arrangements for the arrival of the first wounded men and Belgian refugees who began to arrive in Kent from October 1914. She would have been well known locally and often wrote to the Sevenoaks Chronicle to appeal for funds and support for the hospital and her efforts.

Aurea died in the influenza epidemic that had begun in late 1918.

The short service to remember Aura will take place on the centenary fo her death at 10.00 on Tuesday 5 March and those attending are asked to arrive for 9.50.

Sevenoaks Mayor, Cllr Roderick Hogarth, will be attending along with Riverhead Parish Councillor, Martin Denton.

Prayers will be offered by Daphne Harrison of St Mary’s church.

We hope that local residents will be able to join us to rememebr Aurea and all women who served with the local Voluntary Aid Detachment and British Red Cross during the Great War.

 

 

Great War Medal Reunited with a Sevenoaks Family

Last week we were able to reunite a Great Great Nephew of Gunner Robert Jappe with one of his medals.
Robert Jappe was born in Argentina in 1896. His widowed mother had returned to the U.K. in 1901 with her six sons and settled at Watson’s Villas in the St John’s area of Sevenoaks.
Robert enlisted at Woolwich with the 93rd Brigade Royal Field Artillery and served on the Western Front from October 1915. He was killed on 17 July 1917 and is buried at the Canada Farm Cemetery, Belgium.
Shane Jappe at the war memorial standing to the left of his uncle’s name
Robert’s nephew, Shane, had previously been in contact with historian Matt Ball, who has been able to purchase Robert’s  1914-15 Star at auction.
Matt had recently been invited to attend the national service of remembrance at Westminster Abbey and had taken Gunner Jappe’s medal with him to the service.
Shane recently contacted Matt again and the pair met up with Shane’s wife and father-in-law at the War Memorial, where Matt was able to hand over the medal, which Shane’s father-in-law purchased as a gift for him and Matt also presented a signed copy of his first book.
Both Shane and Matt are keen to hear from anyone connected to the Jappe family, especially anyone who may have Robert’s other medals (The Victory and the British War medals) and the Memorial Plaque that would have been sent to his next of kin.