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  • Scotton War Memorial
Person Details
Scrotton, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
Son of Thomas and Margaret Clayton, of Scotton, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire. Born First Quarter 1893 On 1901 Census he is living with his parents and siblings – Thomas, Jessie, William, George and John – at Mill Place, Scawby, Lincolnshire. His father is listed as a farm foreman (agricultural) On 1911 Census he is listed as living with a Christopher Wright at Sands Lane, Scotton. He is listed as a carpenter. Worked at Marshall, Sons & Co. an agricultural machinery manufacturer based in the Britannia Iron Works, Gainsborough
Worked at Marshall, Sons & Co.
23 Sep 1916
23
333029 - CWGC Website
2217
In 1911 he lived at Sands Lane, Scotton
Private
Nottinghamshire Yeomanry (Sherwood Rangers)
Enlisted September 1914 in 1st/1st Nottinghamshire (Sherwood Rangers) Yeomanry April 1915 - sailed from Avonmouth for service in Egypt Entered Theatre 27th April 1915 Landed Suvla Bay during night (17th/18th August 1915). Moved to Lala Baba (20th August 1915) Forward position at Chocolate Hill (21st August 1915). Took part in fighting for Scimitar Hill (21st August 1915) December 1915 - evacuated from Gallipoli and returned Egypt. January 1916 - 2nd Mounted Division broken up. February 1916 - Nottinghamshire (Sherwood Rangers) Yeomanry moved to Salonika, with brigade retitled as 7th Mounted Brigade. Killed in Action 23rd September 1916 Buried Struma Military Cemetery Plot VII Row F Grave 14 The inscription on his headstone is “HE GAVE HIS LIFE FOR HIS COMRADE.”
Article published 'Sheffield Daily Telegraph,' 1st November 1916. “In an attempt to rescue a wounded comrade, Private P. Clayton, of the Yeomanry, has been killed. He was only 23, and was a native of Scotton.” Article published 'Hull Daily Mail,' 3rd July 1915. The former carpenter was the 23 year-old son of Thomas and Margaret Clayton, of Scotton, Gainsborough. He described his journey to Egypt and first impressions of the country in a letter to his old headmaster on 1st June 1915: “SCAWBY LAD'S INTERESTING LETTER FROM EGYPT. “An old Scawby schoolboy, Philip Clayton (Notts. Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry), writes to Mr Whitaker (headmaster of Scawby School) an interesting letter from Cairo. The letter reads:— “Abbasia Barracks, Cairo, Egypt “June 1st, 1915. “Dear Sir, — You will be surprised to have a letter from this rather out of the way place. But in these times your old boys will be in many parts of the world. We have been in Egypt now for some two months. I cannot say that I like the country, at any rate, the climate. As for the country itself, it is not so bad. You will be aware that I belong to the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry. For some time while in England we were stationed at Sheringham, near Cromer. The Abbassia Barracks, where we are at present stationed, about four miles out of Cairo, will hold nearly half of the entire British Army at normal strength. What we anticipate doing in the future we don't yet know. Some talk of the Dardanelles; others the Suez Canal and others say we will stay where we are until the end of the war. About our journey here. We had a very good voyage. The weather was very nice and calm all the way. We embarked on a large transport steamer, which was a splendid sailor, but as a passenger boat she was very inconvenient, and uncomfortable. We had our horses on board, too. We lived fairly well. The ship authorities found our rations. They were rather more liberal than regular Army contractors. We passed close to Gibraltar, but did not call. We had left Gibraltar about day's journey, when we sighted a submarine, but she did not attack us, as was reported in the papers. The Wayfarer, a vessel on the same mission as we were, was disabled near Queenstown in Ireland. They with true British heroism and coolness, acted nobly, and under the able command of the colonel of the regiment, were landed safely. I salute the Warwickshire Yeomanry, and am proud to be in the same division. To go on with my story: Our first call was Malta, a magnificent place. The barracks and fortresses appear cut out of the solid rock, and woe betide any interfering enemy that dares intrude. She is one mass of guns. The turreted walls that look innocent on the outside can speak with no uncertain sound. The inhabitants seem to be rather a lazy lot, and the harbour reminds one somewhat of the pictures we see of Venice. Gondolas and smartly painted boats are seen in scores; I may safely say, hundreds. The majority of the boats are used for trading among the ships that call. The people chatter like monkeys, trying to sell their wares, which consist practically of everything that can be carried conveniently. Canaries are plentiful, and can be bought for shilling. Of course, they were of use to us on our outward voyage. We stayed in the harbour four hours, during which time we learned much of our doings in the Dardanelles. There was a French gunboat laid close by. There was one of the gunners who had a good knowledge of English, and we had a nice conversation with him. There were several boats of all nationalities in dock. We left Malta, with few regrets. We had three days' journey from Malta to Alexandria. We landed at night and unloaded our horses. That was our first real experience of the natives. They crowded round us with their wares and we had to be very severe with some of them. We stayed near the docks for two days, during which time we saw three shiploads of our Indian troops. They looked a very desperate lot, and yet they are very friendly among themselves, and especially with we English. They would shake our hands and say, “English soldier! Good!'' They offered us supper, which, I may tell you, we refused. Their methods of cooking are too pre-historic for us to enjoy a meal of their making. They have a stone bowl and mix some dirty-looking flour with water, and then take it in their hands and squeeze it, similar children making clay models. I must say that they are very cute at the work. Several of them carried bowie knives on their belts. They do look a desperate lot with those knives in their hands. Their bayonets are much longer than ours, and would go straight through a man. They dress pretty nearly as do, with the exception of the headgear. They all wear turbans, whereas we wear pith helmets. We left the docks, and went about eight miles further out to a camp named Sidibish. This was close to the sea, and very pleasant, although the sand got in our tea, and all our meals. The water was good and plentiful. We marched right through the town, and an interesting time it was for us. The ever-changing scenes as we passed, the picturesque natives with their peculiar cries and more peculiar dress. Their long robes and bare feet, in some cases bedecked with rings and anklets, and others of the working class with just a robe over them for decency's sake. We passed on through the town to the suburbs. No scenery in England can compare with it. The lovely green of the trees and the brilliant flowers grow in such abundance all make a scene that for four miles is the finest I've ever seen. To go on with our journey. We came at length to our camp. It was midday, and we got the full heat of sun on us, that was more keen than ever because of the attraction the sand seems to have for it. We only stayed there a fortnight, as it was killing us all slowly with dysentery. We came to Cairo into barracks. You can have an idea of the size of them. They are colossal buildings, and there is a wall front three miles long, and then the stables and riding schools, hospitals, soldiers' homes, chapels, cinemas, and institutes, to say nothing of the shops that we have in the barracks. We can buy practically anything we want without going out of barracks. We must have a pass to go into Cairo; we are granted one every four nights if we desire one. The city of Cairo is a wonderful place. The buildings are wonderful constructions, and have some of the finest work that I've ever seen. To speak of the morals the city, to put it shortly, there none. Its utter disregard for any morality is awful, as is chiefly the case in eastern cities. We are eight miles from the Sphinx, and can go for 10d. return on the trams. It is worth the money to have the journey alone, without seeing the Sphinx and pyramids. They are without, doubt one of the seven wonders. How in the medieval days they built such a wonderful structure as the pyramids. The stones themselves each weigh several tons, and they are placed high as 400 feet, and no electric cranes in those days. Then on the way to the Sphinx from Cairo is the finest Zoo in the world. There are plenty of places of interest and amusement in the town, but, very little English. It is mostly Oriental, but a good deal of French, especially the singing and music at the theatres. The tram service in Cairo is very good. One can travel from our barracks into Cairo for less than one halfpenny, and it is four miles away, and very decent trams too. There are some of the finest shops in the world in Cairo — one draper's shop in particular was marvellous. The Australians have been stationed here, and caused quite a sensation. British soldiers as privates get 1s. 2d. per day. The Colonials get — Canada 4s. 5d., Australia, 6s., New Zealand 5s. That is a slight difference, isn't it. Why, I don't know. I hear this morning of the air raid on London. The Germans seem to have a certain amount of pluck, despite our assertions the contrary. Luckily the damage is small. We don't see aeroplanes out here. We see camel corps and mule trains and such like out here. The Egyptian Army are a fine body of men. I don't see why some of them could not be sent to the Dardanelles, as it is in their country's interest to subdue the Turk. The Sultan of Egypt's brother lives about a quarter of a mile from our barracks. He has a grand residence, and seems to have a good deal of influence in Cairo. We, in our horse lines, employ a lot of native grooms and general handymen. A groom on his own will work well, but a gang of men for cleaning up take some looking after. It is a characteristic in hot countries to be idle. A native on average gets five piastres a day. A piastre is 2½d. — not a great wage you will say, but they live very cheaply. Oranges grow in plenty in Cairo, but are only three for 2½d. It is said that pork pies are scarce in Melton Mowbray, and boots dear in Northampton, and the same rule applies here. I hear now that our colonel is asking for volunteers for the Dardanelles, to go as infantry. We do not relish going as infantry, after all the trouble we had in bringing our horses out here. A horse is a big burden on a man, but a good friend to one in a tight corner. We are Britishers and cannot shrink from danger. The thought of our homes and womenfolk banishes all thoughts of that kind. They close-barred in their peaceful homes by our watch on the death-mined flood. We fight in a. kind of a holy war. The strong defending the weak; trying to stay the tyrant's hand. It will be an awful struggle, but we shall win through. I often think of those words one our poets: “Not once, nor twice, in our fair island story, the path of duty was the way to glory." Now, Sir, I want, to say how I appreciate the efforts you made whilst I was under your tuition to instil into us those ideals that pointed to making men of us. I am sure that words of counsel you gave have been a great help to me since I have been away from home. I've lost sight of most of the other Scawby lads now, but feel sure that they are wiser and better for the instruction they received at school. Time is getting limited, the bugle is sounding, so I will close with sincere regards from Philip Clayton, 2217. A Squadron. Notts Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry.” Above articles are courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
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    St Genewys Church, Scotton - Scotton War Memorial
  • Struma Military Cemetery -