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Act of Remembrance for Harry Cheeseman

Kahren Glossop
06 November 2019 14:09

In honour of Lance Corporal Harry Cheeseman of the Royal Sussex Regiment who died in 1917 of wounds received in 1915.

Full account of his brave actions ...



To the accompaniment of full military honours the mortal remains of Lance-Corporal Harry Cheeseman, Royal Sussex Regiment, were laid to rest at Angmering yesterday afternoon amid touching scenes. The soldier hero had fully earned the splendid tribute which was paid to him, for gallant and devoted conduct on the battlefield was followed by many months of terrible pain and suffering. Lance Corporal Cbeeseman, who was only 23 years of age,was a fine specimen of the patriotism of this typical English village. He joined the colours early in September 1914, being one of the first in the village to respond to the call. His four brothers also joined up, the proud, but now saddened parents, being Mr and Mrs Cheeseman, of 2 The Cotterells, Angmering. Lance-Corporal Cheeseman and two of his brothers went safely through the Loos, but on 18 November, 1915, he received a wound, which subsequently proved fatal. It was an heroic act which cost him his life. Deceased (sic) and several of his comrades left their trenches for an airing when they were met by an enemy patrol greatly superior in numbers


The British Tommies tried to get back to their trenches, but several of them were hit. Lance-Corporal Cheeseman, who had got safely into his trench, heard the shouts of the wounded, and, despite the fire of the enemy, he returned to the spot and brought back a wounded comrade. He made off again to repeat the act, but this time he was shot before he could accomplish his merciful purpose. The shot went through his spine and lungs, and from that day he lingered between life and death. For 16 months up to the time of his death he was perfectly helpless, but with true british grit and pluck he bore his pain with a minimum of complaint. For the past five months he received every care and attention at the Duchess of Norfolk’s home, which her Grace with such characteristic sympathy and tenderness provided for such cases. His death, a happy release, took place on Monday. Much sympathy has been shown to the parents, who have been deeply touched by the numerous messages of condolence.



In view of the heroism of the young soldier, it was only fitting that due tribute should be paid to his memory at the funeral. The ceremony taking place yesterday gave everyone an opportunity to shew their respect and admiration, and thanks to the interest of Colonel F G Hamley A.P.D., and the kindly co-operation of Captain Fraser J.P. of Worthing, full military honours were accorded. The arrangements were made by Sergeant-Major Renham of Worthing and the coffin was conveyed from deceased’s home to the chinch on a naval 7- pounder gun, specially adapted for the purpose. Members of the Littlehampton Volunteers provided the gun team in charge of Sergeant Hill and Corporal Shepherdson, and also the firing party, under Sergeant Town. Many other members of the Volunteers under the command of Lieutenant James N. Snewin were present together with the Littlehampton (Men's) VAD, in charge of Corporals Griffiths and Waterman. The square was lined with people as the cortege passed through, the coffin being preceded by the firing party with their rifles reversed. Behind the mourners came the members of the Volunteer band, carrying numerous floral tributes.


As the procession entered the church, the organist played Chopin's funeral march. The church was completely filled, and many people stood throughout the service, which was deeply impressive. The Rev. J. B. Orme officiated, and most touching was the manner in which the aged clergyman recited the opening passages of the funeral service. The surpliced choir sweetly chanted the 90th Psalm, and the congregation afterwards joined in the singing of the well-known hymn, "Abide with me." The final obsequies at the graveside were performed in the presence of upwards of 500 people, and at the conclusion the firing party gave three volleys and the "Last Post" was sounded. On the coffin was the inscription: "Harry Cheeseman, aged 23 years. Died, February 26 1917. The family mourners were: Mr and Mrs Cheeseman (parents), First Class Mechanic J. Cheeseman, R.N.A.S., and Corporal J. Cheeseman, Royal Sussex Regiment (brothers) Mrs Booker, Mrs Barber, Mrs Blann, Mrs Milne and Miss Cheeseman (sisters), Mr Booker, (brother-in-law), Mrs Cheeseman (sister-in-law), Signaller Jacobs (cousin), Mrs Jacobs (aunt), Miss Buckley, Miss Street, Master C. Miller and Mrs Mason. Members of the Equitable Friendly Society, of which deceased was a member, also followed.


Parents, grandparents and carers are most welcome to join us for a simple act of remembrance that will take place on the top playground.

Please arrive at school via the school office no later than 10.50am on Monday 11th November