HAROLD JOHN RIVRON FRENCH

Photograph courtesy of Elaine.

 

Born: 18th April 1917, Dovercourt, Essex.

Died on or since: 8th June 1944; age: 27; at sea.

Residence: ‘West Elms’ 113, Fronks Road, Dovercourt, Essex.

Occupation: Civil Engineer.

 

Rank: Captain; Service Number: 233139.

Regiment: Royal Engineers.

 

The final resting place is unknown.

 

Memorial Reference:

Panel 11, Column 3.

Bayeux War Cemetery,

Calvados,

France.

 

Father: Francis Harold French, born November 1885, Worthing, West Sussex – died March 1946, at ‘West Elms’ Fronks Road, Dovercourt, Essex.

Mother: Beatrice Ruby Mace Rivron, born January 1884, Ipswich.

 

Harold was educated at Ipswich School.

 

ENGLAND & WALES REGISTER 1939.

Harold was a Civil Engineer. He was living with his parents & sister at their family home – ‘West Elms’ 113, Fronks Road, Dovercourt, Essex.

Francis, a Borough Engineer & Surveyor.

Beatrice, a Mantle Maker.

Margaret Joyce Isabel French, born July 1913, Dovercourt, Essex.

 

On the 23rd December 1939, at St. Mary the Virgin Church, Little Ilford, Essex, 22 year old Harold, a civil engineer, of The Rectory, Little Ilford, married 21 year old Hannah Margaret Woolf, of Mill Cottage, Lothersdale, Yorkshire, a Women’s Land Army worker, born 24th July 1918, Montreal, Ontario, Canada – daughter of Walter Reginald Woolf, a designer – clothes, and Margaret Woolf (nee Mason). The Woolf family were Congregational Calvary.

Hannah’s mother, Margaret Mason died at the end of July 1921, aged 27. Walter returned to his family in England with his 5 year old daughter, Hannah a few months later.

 

Probate to Margaret Joyce Isabel French – sister.

 

Harold is also commemorated on the Ipswich School Chapel war memorial and the British Normandy Memorial, virtually opened by His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales, on the 6th June 2021.

 

2nd Fife and Forfar Yeomanry

Maybe the greatest achievement of the Royal Engineers was the construction and operation of the Mulberry Harbour and its support for the Battle of Normandy on the 6th June 1944 and is possible that Harold may have been involved in this during the D-Day landings.

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