Born: 12th September 1905, Brandon & Byshottles, County Durham.
Baptised: 3rd October 1905, at Brandon & Byshottles, County Durham.
Died: 19th March 1940; age: 35; Killed in a collision at Longstone Lighthouse, Northumberland.
Rank: Able Seaman; Service Number: C/J 1000183.
Regiment: Royal Navy, H.M.S. ‘Jervis’
Tynemouth (Preston) Cemetery,
Relatives Notified & Address: Son of Frederick & Edith Lait; nephew of Charles Lait, of Ipswich.
1911 19, Potter Street, Ipswich.
Sydney was 5 years old and living with his paternal grandparents & uncles.
Harry Lait, 67, a Superannuated Gas Worker, born St. Margaret’s, Ipswich.
Sarah Lait (nee Jaye), 57, born Woodbridge, Suffolk.
Charles Lait, 20, a Machinist Turret Lathe – Engineers & Boiler Makers, born St. Clement’s,
James William Lait, 14, a Learner Iron & Steel Turnery – Engineers & Boiler Makers, born St. Clement’s, Ipswich.
In 1911, Sydney’s widowed father, Frederick Lait, was a boarder at the home of 58 year old, Henry Lowe, a Painter’s Labourer. 4, Milton Court Road, New Cross, S.E. Frederick was 23 years old, a Postal Clerk – Magadi Soda Co. Ltd.
Sydney’s mother was Edith Mary Lait (nee Gill).
His father, Frederick Lait, born 1887, St. Clement’s, Ipswich – died in the First World War on the 11th September 1914, of Wounds received on the same day at Nantes. Frederick was a Corporal, service number 14649, for the 48th Heavy Battery of the Royal Garrison Artillery. He was laid to rest at Nantes (La Bouteillerie), France.
On the 10th January 1918, 12 year old, Sydney was sent from the care of the town of Ipswich to the Training Ship Exmouth, moored on the Thames off Grays in Essex. He was 4ft 10ins in height. Exmouth was managed by the Metropolitan Asylums Board, for boys from the age of 12 chargeable to the poor rates. Sydney was discharged on the 8th December 1920 to H.M.S.’Impregnable.’
In 1929, Samford, Suffolk, Sydney married Alice Mary Briggs, born March 1907, Norwich, Norfolk.
H.M.S. ‘Jervis’ 19th March 1940
H.M.S ‘Jervis’ was a J-class destroyer, built by Hawthorn Leslie & Co. Ltd., Newcastle. Laid down 26th August 1937. Launched 9th September 1938. Commissioned 8th May 1939. On the 19th March 1940, H.M.S. ‘Jervis’ was involved in a collision with Swedish freighter, S.S. ‘Tor’, near Longstone Lighthouse, Longstone Rock, Seahorses, Northumberland, and sustained major damage to her bow structure. 17 crew killed in the collision. She was taken for repairs at Swan Hunter Shipyard, Newcastle.