Images and information courtesy of Wendy Sadler
image from 1917 Suffolk Chronicle & Mercury newspaper.
Born: 18th May 1898, Cromer, Norfolk.
Died: 9th July 1917; age 19; Killed by internal explosion of vessel at Scapa Flow.
HMS Vanguard a St. Vincent class Dreadnought Battleship, part of the grand fleet saw action during the Battle of Jutland in May 1916 seeing most of her service in the North Sea during WW1.
9th July 1917 HMS Vanguard was anchored in Scapa Flow north of Scotland and suffered a series of explosions in her magazines shortly before midnight, rapidly sinking with the loss of 843 men of the complement of 845 crew.
Residence: 50, Rendlesham Road, Ipswich.
Employed: at Messrs. Jackson Bros., Ipswich.
Rank: Private; Service Number: CH/20588; H.M.S. ‘Vanguard’.
Regiment: Royal Marine Light Infantry
Enlistment details: 5′ 7″, had dark brown hair, grey eyes and a dark complexion. A tattoo of an anchor on his left forearm. His trade when he left school was a butcher, before he enlisted.
Relatives Notified & Address: Son of James Burrell Metcalf & Esther Robertson Metcalf, of 50, Rendlesham Road, Ipswich.
1901 West Street, Cromer, Norfolk.
Henry was 2 years old and living with his parents & siblings.
James Burrell Metcalf, a Grocer’s Shopkeeper, born King’s Lynn, Norfolk.
Ester Robertson Metcalf (nee Fielding), 35, born Hindringham, Suffolk.
Thomas James Metcalf, 12, born King’s Lynn.
Leonard Fielding Metcalf, 9, born King’s Lynn.
Cyril George Metcalf, 8, born King’s Lynn.
Muriel Bessie Metcalf, 6, born Cromer.
1911 54, Rendlesham Road, Ipswich.
Henry was 12 years old and living with his parents & siblings.
James, 51, a Grocer’s Assistant.
Leonard, 19, a Fishmonger’s Assistant.
Muriel, 16, a Domestic Servant.
A note from Joanne Mckeon : My great grandma was Annie May Allen and she died 1970 for some reason she kept a tiny newspaper cutting of Harry Metcalf.
Ipswich men lost on the Vanguard:
Arthur Palmer Athroll
John William Warne
William Henry Warne
Boy 1st Class
Henry Metcalf was my Great Uncle – my Grandmother’s younger brother
We have visited Scapa Flow twice on the anniversaries of the sinking of HMS Vanguard and hope to be going to the Centenary commemorations this year.
I would love to hear from anyone that knows any more about my Great Uncle who was fondly known as ‘Kif’ by all his relations.