Tag Archives: 1941

Auxiliary Fire Service graves in London Road Cemetery

London Road Cemetery, Mitcham, CR4 3LA (Google map).

In the Commonwealth War Graves section, plot 14, of this cemetery there are three gravestones for Auxiliary Firemen who died at the Surrey Theatre, on 10th May 1941.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) website doesn’t include the details of these graves in their list of the war graves at this cemetery, because, as commented below, they are not classed as full war graves. The three gravestones in plot 14 are shown below, the sequence being from left to right as viewed from the path, which leads from the entrance in Victoria Road.

E. G. Pepper, aged 32

E.F. Robinson, aged 35

C.A. Elliman, aged 37

A pdf plan of the the layout of this cemetery is available from Merton council’s website.

Lilian Bullock – obituary

From the Mitcham Cricket Club Yearbook for 1977 :

Mrs Lilian Bullock who died last November in her seventy ninth year – just eighteen months after retiring from the Kings Head, had been in poor health for some little time.

By her death the Club has lost its only lady Vice-president and a very good friend over many years, as Lil took a great interest in the catering side of the Club affairs and really enjoyed supervising the formidable array of helpers in her earlier days.

Lil and her late husband Burn came to the Kings Head in 1941. When he died in 1954 she carried on managing and created a wonderful “crickety” atmosphere about the place which showed particularly during the Club’s Cricket Weeks, the frequent visits by many County players undoubtably added to that feeling.

Thanks to Lil’s kindness the Club had come to regard the “Head” as its second headquarters especially during the close season when the Pavilion was not too inviting.

Lil was very pleased when the brewers decided to rename The Head to the “Burn Bullock” in memory of her late husband. She leaves one daughter Stella and one grandson Nicholas.

Gilliat Hatfeild – Obituary 12th February 1941

Daily Express
12th February, 1941

Man refused £500,000 to live on 5 pounds a week and three texts

Gilliat Edward Hatfeild refused half a million and lived on five pounds a week in a cottage. He didn’t need a half million. He was rich; and he was giving away practically all his income. Gilliat Edward Hatfeild has just died in his cottage. He was 77 years old, and had never married. He spent his life fulfilling three passages from the Scriptures:-

1. It is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts XX, 35)

He received much. His father was head of 180-year-old tobacco and snuff firm James Taddy and Co. in the Minories whose Myrtle Grove Brand used to be a popular smoke before the firm shut down in 1920. From his father, Gilliatt Hatfeild inherited a fortune and Morden Hall at Morden Surrey along with 700 acres.

He set to work to give much.

In 1920 he turned the 60-room hall into a convalescent home for the London Hospital. He lived in his cottage on the estate, and patients from London’s East End lived in the hall, recovering health and strength.
He paid for everything. It must have cost him at least £150 a week

2. Take heed that you do not do your arms before men (Matthew six, one)

That figure of £150 a week is an estimate. Even the secretary of the hospital does not know the real amount. He said yesterday: “Officials at the hospital visited Mr Hatfeild about once a week but he never discussed money with them.”

Gilliat Hatfeild hated anyone knowing about his generosity. He wore inexpensive clothes till they were threadbare, ate simply, drank no alcohol, did not smoke.

When he gave the estate staff Christmas gifts each year he made a little speech to thank them for their loyalty.

3. Whoso shall receive one such a little child in my name receiveth me (Matthew XVIII 5)

Always there with children when the patients at the hall. Every day he played with them – they went to his cottage to fetch him into the sunshine, and hung on arms, laughing and chattering.

His estate was a sanctuary for sick children and a sanctuary the songbirds – both his friends. That was why, when offers totalling half a million came along in the Morden land boom of the 1920s he simply said “No”

Firemen killed in 1941 at Surrey Theatre Blackfriars Road

A plaque near Blackfriars Bridge reads

In memory of 11 London Auxiliary Firemen, a Sub officer of the London Fire Brigade and five Mitcham Auxiliary Firemen, killed by enemy action while relaying water from the basement of the demolished Surrey Theatre, which stood on this site and was then used as an emergency water supply, to fires at the Elephant and Castle on the night of 10th/11th of May 1941

The five firemen from Mitcham are listed below. The links are to Commonwealth War Grave Commission web page entries.


Name Rank Age Address
Cecil Arthur ELLIMAN Fireman 32 75 Longthornton Road, Mitcham
Harold Charles PARKES Fireman 40 15 Homefield Gardens, Mitcham
Edward George PEPPER Fireman 32 1 Aberdeen Terrace, Merton
Ernest Francis ROBINSON Fireman 35 49 Courtney Road, Collier’s Wood
Albert Henry SPILLER Leading Fireman 34 24 Heyford Road, Mitcham

Source of age and address is the Commonwealth War Grave Commission website.

Probate for Edward George Pepper

PEPPER Edward George of 1 Aberdeen-terrace Merton London SW19 who is believed to have been killed through war operations on 12 May 1941 and whose dead body was found on 12 May 1941 at Surrey Theatre Blackfriars-road Surrey

Adminis-tration Llandudno 4 July to Kathleen Isabel Pepper widow. Effects £329 14s. 10d.