Lieutenant Gerald E. Combe

Killed in Action Lieutenant G. E. Combe Lieutenant Gerald E. Combe, of The Queen’s Own, Royal West Kent Regiment, previously missing, is now officially reported killed in action in Belgium in May, 1940. He was the younger son of Mr and Mrs H.W. Combe, of Elmbank Hotel, Sundridge Avenue, and late of 11 Tweedy Road, Bromley, and was 23 years of age.  He was educated at Carn Brea School and Dover College. Lieutenant Combe joined the Territorial Force hen he was in business living in Norfolk, and on returning to…

Mortimer Family: Father and Seven Sons Serving

Notable Family Record Father and Seven Sons Serving Mrs Mortimer, of 120 Homesdale Road, Bromley, gave to a Kentish Times reporter some particulars of her family’s exceptionally fine record of service for King and Country. Mr and Mrs Mortimer lived in Croft Road for nearly 20 years.  They have had 13 children, and there are 11 living – seven sons and four daughters.  The two eldest are twin sons, Horace Mortimer (who has a family of nine children), and Leslie Mortimer (who has 10 children). Three other sons are married,…

The Durling Sisters

It wasn’t only sons who helped fight the war in WW2.  Many families with girls were also proud of their daughters achievements.  This feature from the Bromley and District Times promotes the efforts of three sisters from Bromley. Two in A.T.S. and one in Land Army Many parents speak proudly of their sons in the Forces, but Mr and Mrs G. Durling, of 72 Martins Road, Bromley, are proud of their three daughters in the Services. Before the war Joan and Dorothy worked at Morris’s of Bromley, and Margaret was…

Award for Gallantry: Lieu. (E.W.) Kevin Walton

Eric William Kevin Walton, known as Kevin Walton, was an officer in the Royal Navy during World War II. Born in Kobe in Japan on 15 May 1918, Lieu Walton was the son of William Heward Murray Walton, a clergyman and missionary, and his wife Myra (née Hebbert), whose family had served for four generations in the Indian Civil Service. Walton joined the Royal Navy as an engineer officer at the start of World War II, and took part in various naval actions during the first five years.  Walton later…

Private E. Brooker

Prisoners of War Private E. Brooker News has been received that Private E. Brooker of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, son of the late Mr James Brooker and Mrs Brooker, of 19 Chatterton Road, Bromley, is a prisoner of ward in Japanese hands at Camp Malai. Private E. Brooker joined His Majesty’s Forces in 1940 and was in Singapore when it capitulated and no news had been heard of him for 15 months.  He was educated at Raglan Road and Bromley Common Schools. Private Brooker has two other brothers serving,…

Trailblazing iconic fashion of the 1940s

Although we look back at the 1940’s and think of it as a decade of mostly war and hardship, it was in fact a milestone decade for style in women’s fashion, despite the 1930’s being a hard act to follow. With style icons such as Christian Dior, Ava Gardner, Bette Davis, Doris Day and Rita Hayworth, these women were trailblazers in styles and new silhouettes – many styles of which are still supported today in women’s fashion. These adverts appeared in the local newspaper in 1943, encouraging women to invest…

Private John Bertram Ecott

Private John Bertam Ecott was the son of John Roland and Edith Miriam Ecott, of Bromley, Kent. He volunteered  in February 1940 and was called up almost immediately.  The Commonweath War Grave Commisson reported his death as being sometime between 07/06/1940 and 18/07/1940.  This report of his death was reported in local newspaper in April 1940. He is buried at Pornic War Cemetery in Loire-Atlantique, France. Private J.B. Ecott We regret to record the death of Private John Bertram Ecott, R.A.S.C.  He had been posted as missing more than eight…

Boxalls – Our Service Families

Notable Golden Wedding Year Mr and Mrs E.J. Boxall of 28 Nichol Lane, Bromley, who were married exactly 50 years ago last Sunday, March 20, will have cause to remember their golden wedding year since it coincides not only with a year of British victories, but is marked by the fact that no fewer than eight members of their family and their son’ families are serving with the Forces. Mrs Boxall, who was Miss Charlotte Annie Friend, has lived in Bromley all of her life, but Mr Boxall came from…

Death of popular local soldier – Leslie Ralph Eden

Leslie Ralph Eden was a sergeant in the 83 Squadron of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.  He lived in Bromley wth his aunt and cousins, but was educated and worked in Camberwell. He was interred into the family grave in Camberwell New Cemetery , Grave 2094 Sergeant L.R. Eden, R.A.F. We have to record the death on active service of Sergeant Leslie Ralph Eden, R.A.F. He was the only child of the late Mr J. Eden and of Mrs Eden, who lives with her sister, Mrs Frances Jordan, 104…

Many people caught out with Gas Tests in Bromley

Gas attack tests were conducted during WW2 to prepare civilians for such attacks from the enemy.  This article was published in the local Bromley newspaper explaining, and possibly also warning, its readers to be vigilant and remember to take their gas masks with them everywhere. Gas Tests in Bromley Many people caught in Main Street THEY CAME OUT WITHOUT THEIR MASKS A mother with her baby set a fine example during the first gas test in Bromley; they both had their respirators.  On the other hand, some Service men were…