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Person Details
24 Mar 1891
Pimlico London
George was the son of William and Harriet Ferriman. William and Harriet had three sons; George Frederick William, Sidney (Sydney) Clement and Ernest Edward. George Frederick William was born on 24 March 1891 and baptised on 26 April 1891 at Holy Trinity, Upper Chelsea. Sidney Clement was born in 1893 (birth registered J/F/M, Ticehurst, Sussex) and baptised on 16 April 1893 in Tunbridge Wells, Kent. The youngest boy, Ernest Edward, was born in 1894 (birth registered O/N/D, Ticehurst, Sussex). Harriet Frith was born in Beighton, Derbyshire, the daughter of George and Ann Frith; she was baptised in Beighton on 29 April 1866. William was born about 1862 in Marylebone, London. They were married in London in 1889 (O/N/D). (When Harriet was 15 she was in service in Yorkshire and so may have moved later to London for work.) In 1891 William (28), a coachman/groom, and his wife (25) were living at 16 Ebury Square, Chelsea, with their one-month old son, George. Also in the household was Sarah Golding, a 'monthly nurse.' By 1893 when their second son, Sidney, was born they were probably living in the Tunbridge Wells area; the births of their two youngest children were registered in Ticehurst, Sussex, but census records gave their place of birth as Tunbridge Wells, Kent. William, died aged 33 in 1895 (death registered O/N/D, Ticehurst, Sussex). The widowed Harriet married John Henry Gelsthorpe (b. Teversal, Derbyshire, parents Joseph and Margaret) four years later in 1899 (marriage registered O/N/D, Chesterfield, Derbyshire) and in 1901 they were living at 2 Cherwell Terrace, Woodford Halse, Northamptonshire. John Henry was a railway engine driver. John (24) and Harriet (34) had a daughter, Florence Grace, aged 2 months who had been baptised in Woodford cum Membris, Northamptonshire, on 25 March 1901. Also in the household were John's three stepsons, George (10), Sidney (8) and Ernest (6). By 1911 John and Harriet were living at 86 Broomhill Road, Bulwell, Nottingham. John was still employed as a railway engine driver. He and Harriet, who had been married for 11 years, now had three children; Florence (10) and Margaret Mary (6) and John Henry (4, b. 10 September 1906, died 1979 aged 73) who were born in Bulwell. Harriet's three sons were still living at home; George (20, butcher), Sidney (18, apprentice letter press printer) and Ernest (16, grocer's assistant). Also in the household on the night of the census was Annie Harriet Ferriman (46, b. Marylebone) who was described as John's sister-in-law. George's brother, Sidney, also served in the war in the King’s Royal Rifle Corps (RR9534 Rifleman). He enlisted on 18 January 1915 and was discharged on 10 April 1917 (cause of discharge, Para 392 XVI KR, wounds). Sydney qualified for the British War Medal and Victory Medal; Silver War Badge (R9534 Rifleman KRRC), badge no. 165770. George's youngest brother, Ernest, died aged 24 in 1918 (registered December, Nottingham), his mother in 1954 aged 88 (registered December, Nottingham), his stepfather, John Gelsthorpe also in 1954 aged 77 (registered December, Nottingham) and his surviving brother, Sidney, aged 75 in 1968 (registered December, Nottingham).
In 1911 he was a butcher. He joined the Royal Navy in 1912, apparently using his brother Sidney's name and personal details; this deception was not discovered by the Royal Navy until his death in June 1916. (See 'extra information')
05 Jun 1916
25
2876747 - CWGC Website
SS/4055
Able Seaman
HMS Hampshire Royal Navy
George was lost in HMS Hampshire. His body was not recovered for burial and he is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. For details of George's RN career see 'extra information'. Immediately after Jutland, HMS Hampshire was ordered to carry Lord Kitchener from Scapa Flow on a diplomatic mission to Russia via the port of Arkhangelsk. Sailing alone in heavy seas, Hampshire was approximately 1.5 mi (2.4 km) off the mainland of Orkney between Brough of Birsay and Marwick Head at 19:40 when an explosion occurred and she heeled to starboard. She had struck one of several mines laid by the German mine laying submarine U-75 on 28/29 May 1916, just before the Battle of Jutland. The detonation had holed the cruiser between bows and bridge, and the lifeboats were smashed against the side of the ship by the heavy seas when they were lowered. About 15 minutes after the explosion, Hampshire sank by the bows. Of the 655 crewmen and 7 passengers aboard, only 12 crewmen on two Carley floats managed to reach the shore alive. Kitchener and his staff were lost. (Wikipedia)
Nottingham Evening Post notice (abridged), 22 June 1916: 'AB G Ferriman, 86 Broomhill Road, Bulwell, Leading Stoker W Stevenson, 132 Northgate, New Basford, both lost with HMS Hampshire.' Identification of GFW Ferriman: The name on the Bulwell St Mary memorial is clearly 'GFW Ferriman'. There are only eight UK First World War casualties with the surname ‘Ferriman’ on the CWGC database and only one with the initials ‘GFW’. The identification of GFW Ferriman as Able Seaman GFW Ferriman who died when HMS Hampshire was lost on 5 June 1916 is corroborated by the information in the notice of his death in the Nottingham Post on 22 June 1916. Unusually there is no record of an Able Seaman GFW Ferriman on either the RN&RM War Graves Roll or the RN Register of Seamen’s Services. However, there is a record of the death of an Able Seaman Sydney Clement Ferriman on each of these RN records. The man’s personal details, including date and place of birth and next of kin/address match those of George’s brother, Sydney (Sidney). A note in the 'remarks' section of SC Ferriman's record on the RN Register of Seamen's Services and obviously added after the man's death, reads 'According to relatives this seaman’s name is George Frederick William Ferriman (GR5970)’. There is a record of a Sidney (sic) Clement Ferriman serving in the King’s Royal Rifle Corps (RR9534 Rifleman). He enlisted on 18 January 1915 and was discharged on 10 April 1917 (cause of discharge, Para 392 XVI KR, wounds). Sydney qualified for the British War Medal and Victory Medal; Silver War Badge (R9534 Rifleman KRRC), badge no. 165770. The RN Medal Roll shows Sydney qualified for the Star, BWM and VM. A Sidney C Ferriman, born about 1893, died aged 75 in 1968 (registered Nottingham, December). It seems, therefore, that when George joined the Royal Navy in 1912 he used his younger brother's name and details. There is no obvious explanation to this conundrum except that the Royal Navy records were correct in that these were the details given to them by the man when he joined up and the relatives were made aware of the inconsistency in the records when they were notified of the death of their son 'Sidney Clement' when HMS Hampshire was sunk. We can but provide the details of the Naval record attributed to Sydney Ferriman which appear more properly be those of his brother, George. RN Register of Seamen's Services: Sydney Clement Ferriman, born 29 January 1893 (Tunbridge Wells), occupation baker's assistant. Twelve year engagement (5+7 years), 19 August 1912. Served in the following ships and shore establishments: Ships and shore establishments: Victory I, 19 August 1912-15 October 1912 (Ordinary Seaman); HMS Prince of Wales, 16 October 1912-13 November 1913; Victory I, 14 November 1913-15 December 1913; HMS Europa, 16 December 1913-26 January 1914; HMS Hampshire 27 January 1914-5 June 1916. Service record annotated ‘NP 4098/1916. DD 5 June 1916 when HMS Hampshire was sunk.’ RN&RM War Graves Roll: Sydney Clement Ferriman, SS4055 (Po) Able Seaman, born 19 January 1893 at Frant and Tunbridge Wells Kent, killed or died as a direct result of enemy action 5 June 1916, HMS Hampshire. Relatives notified and address: mother, Harriett Gelsthorpe, 86, Broomsfield Rd, Highbury Vale, Bulwell, Notts. RN Register of Seamen's Services: Sydney Clement Ferriman, born 29 January 1893 (Tunbridge Wells), occupation baker's assistant. Twelve year engagement (5+7 years), 19 August 1912. Served in the following ships and shore establishments: Ships and shore establishments: Victory I, 19 August 1912-15 October 1912 (Ordinary Seaman); HMS Prince of Wales, 16 October 1912-13 November 1913; Victory I, 14 November 1913-15 December 1913; HMS Europa, 16 December 1913-26 January 1914; HMS Hampshire 27 January 1914-5 June 1916. Service record annotated ‘NP 4098/1916. DD 5 June 1916 when HMS Hampshire was sunk.’ Nottingham Evening Post, Roll of Honour, 13 June 1916: ’Ferriman. Perished on HMS Hampshire, Able Seaman Ferriman, eldest and dearly beloved son of Harriet and the late W Ferriman of Tunbridge Wells, and of John Henry Gelsthorpe, 86 Broomhill-road, Bulwell. A brave and fearless life sacrificed. From his sorrowing mother and family.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, Roll of Honour, 13 June 1916: ’Ferriman.’In affectionate remembrance of my dear friend, who was lost with HMS Hampshire, June 5th. Rest in peace. Frances. 2016 - A First World War Centenary Wood devised by the Woodland Trust has been planted at Kirkwall, Orkney. The copse will be planted with 746 saplings to commemorate the 737 men lost in HMS Hampshire and also the nine men lost from the drifter Lauren Crown which struck a mine after she was sent to help clear the minefield.
Remembered on