Introduction

Updated: Nov 4

It is our intention to include articles here relating to Silton village. CLICK TEXT At present we are researching the WW1 soldiers who gave their lives and appear on local memorials. In May 2021 we completed the stories of WW1 soldiers featured on Gillingham and Milton-on-Stour memorials. Please contact the Museum if you have any story to tell about Silton life.

The website manager reserves the right to include/amend or reject such articles and if included, to remove them at a future date.

Any articles received and accepted will be placed in the Museum's Digital Archive.


Details of Silton can be found on the following website https://www.british-history.ac.uk/rchme/dorset/vol4/pp76-79


The image below is the plaque in the church to remember those who died in WW1

Research about James Charles Burfitt appears under the entry for Bourton.


Research about Daniel Suter, Seth Suter and Richard Samuel Suter and John (Jehu) West is below.


SUTER Daniel James

6417 Private Daniel Suter 1st Battalion Dorsetshire Regiment was killed in action in France on 13 October 1914

Daniel was born at Silton in 1885, the son of blacksmith William Suter and his wife Jane.

He was one of ten children, his brothers Edwin, William, Frank, Arthur and sisters Flora, Susannah, Maude, Beatrice all being older than him.

Daniel’s father William died in 1885, the year that Daniel was born, and in 1891 Daniel was living at 1 Stroud Common, Silton with his mother Jane, sisters Susannah & Beatrice and brother Arthur.

His mother married again in 1893 to Emanuel Hicks and Daniel’s half-brother was born in 1894.

According to the Register of Soldier’s Effects Daniel enlisted in the army at Gillingham on 13 January 1902 and the fact that he served for several years is reflected in the fact that his war gratuity was £5 rather than the £3 awarded to those who only served during WWI. However he must have left the army by 1911 as he is shown in the 1911 census living at 4 Furze Hill Common, Silton with his mother Jane, stepfather and half- brother and he was employed as a labourer.

Daniel went to France soon after the outbreak of war and on 12th October the 1st battalion was holding part of the front line near Pont Fixe, a bridge over the La Bassee Canal when it came under a heavy German counter-attack. The heroic fighting at Pont Fixe cost the 1st Dorsets some 150 killed, 122 wounded and over 150 missing.

The fact that Daniel died only two months after the war began also indicates that he had served previously and so would have been among the reservists who were re-called as soon as the war began.

Daniel’s wages of £5 9s 2d and war gratuity of £5 was shared between his mother, four brothers, four sisters and half- brother – 10s/11d each. He is remembered on Le Touret memorial in France and on the memorial tablet in Silton Church.

LG

Entry posted 3 November 2021

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SUTER Seth and Richard Samuel

18183 Private Seth Suter 3rd Battalion Somerset Light Infantry died 12 June 1918 whilst serving in Ireland.

12457 Lance Corporal Richard Samuel Suter A Company, 7th Battalion Duke of Edinburgh’s Wiltshire Regiment died of wounds in France on 4 November 1918.

Seth and Richard Suter were brothers, the sons of Seth and Mary Suter of Silton. Seth and Mary were both widowed when they married in 1879 and had children by their previous marriages. Seth was 20 years older than Mary. In 1891 they were living at Waterloo Road, Silton with their children Florence 16 (daughter of Mary), Rosanna 8, Seth 4 and Ernest 2. Seth senior was a farm labourer.

Another child Richard Samuel was born in 1894 and Seth senior died in 1899. In 1901 Mary was living with her children Rosanna 18, Seth 14, Ernest 12 and Richard 7. Rosanna was a dressmaker and Seth a stable boy and groom.

In 1911 Mary and her children were living at Church Cottage, Silton. Rosanna was still a dressmaker. Both Seth 24 and Richard 18 were employed as domestic gardeners and Ernest 22 was a farm labourer. Seth was employed by Rev. AL Barnes-Lawrence and in addition to his duties as gardener and groom he was a bell ringer, clerk and choirman at Silton Parish Church.

On 11 January 1916 at Silton Church Seth Suter 29 married Jane Ann Sissens 33 a housemaid at Silton Rectory. Jane Ann came from Cranswick in Yorkshire and accompanied Rev. Barnes-Lawrence and his wife when they moved from Yorkshire to Silton in 1905. According to a report in The Western Gazette of 21 June 1918 Seth was rejected as unfit for military service from 1915 until 1917 because of his heart weakness. However, in March 1918 he was placed in Grade 1. Although he was exempted on appeal by the Shaftesbury Tribunal this exemption was swept away under the stringent conditions of the National Service Act.

On 18 May 1918 Seth joined the 3rd Battalion Somerset Light Infantry which was the training unit through which recruits passed and which was based in Ireland at that time. Three weeks later he died at Hollywood Barracks from heart disease after he contracted influenza. The Western Gazette of 21 June 1918 reported that his body was conveyed from Ireland to Silton under military escort and that over 200 relatives and friends attended Seth’s funeral at Silton Church where he is buried.

Seth’s widow Jane Ann returned to Yorkshire. In 1939 she was living at her former family home with her brother and his wife and was helping with the evacuation of school children. She died in Yorkshire in 1943 and is buried at Silton Church with her late husband Seth.

LG

Posted 3 November 2021

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WEST John Walter

27640 Private John Walter West 1st Battalion Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry was killed in action on 8 May 1917 in France.

John Walter West was born at Silton in 1880, the eldest child of carpenter Stephen West and his wife Emily.

In 1881 the family were living in Silton. In 1891 John was living in Fantley Lane, Silton with his parents and younger siblings Barham & Emily Rhoda and they were still there in 1901.

John’s father died in 1906 and in 1911 John was still living in Fantley Lane with his mother and brother and was employed as a labourer.

John enlisted at Gillingham but details of his army service aren’t known. It is possible that he went to France with 1st/5th battalion Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry in May 1916. He was killed in action on 8 May 1917 at the second Battle of Arras which took place between 9 April and 16 May 1917. He was 40 years of age.

His mother Emily had died in March 1917, just before he was killed.

A war gratuity of £4 and wages of £6 6s 4d were paid to sister Emily and brother Barham.

John West is remembered on the Arras Memorial (see below) and on the tablet in Silton Church where his name is shown as Jehu Walter West.


LG

Posted 4 November 2021

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