[Skip to content]

Person Details
17 Feb 1916
Hednesford, Staffordshire.
SIRTISFIELD on memorial. James was the son of William and Sarah Sirdifield. William was born in Staffordshire and Sarah (nee Dorricott) in Cheshire. They were married at Hendesford, Staffordshire, on 22 May 1893; both were 22 years old. They were to have five children: James Thomas (b. 1895), William (Willie) (b. 1899), John (b 1902), Robert (b. 1 February 1906), Arthur (b. 15 July 1908). With the exception of John who was born in Claycross, Derbyshire, all the boys were born in Staffordshire. (The dates of birth of Robert and Arthur have been taken from the Death Index.) In 1901 William, a coal miner, and Sarah were living at Hillstown, Langwith Road, Scarcliffe, Derbyshire, with their two sons James (7) and William (1). Also in the household was William's widowed mother, Mary Sirdifield (54). Sarah died in 1910 and in 1911 the widowed William and his five sons - James (17), William (12), John (9), Robert (4) and Arthur (2) - were living at 48 Coke Street, Mansfield Woodhouse. Also in the household was a boarder, Violet Hartley (26), who was a domestic servant (housemaid). William married Violet in Mansfield in 1915 (O/N/D). At the time of James' death in 1916 the family was living at 10 Greyhound Yard, Mansfield. James' brother, William, may have served in the Sherwood Foresters (Labour Corps) during the war as there is a record of a William Sirdifield (20991.547886) who was awarded the 1915 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medal. The Death Index records suggest the following dates of the deaths of James' brothers: John E. died 1947 (registered March, Chesterfield, Derbys); William E Sirdifield died 1962 aged 63 (registered September, Mansfield); Robert died 1990 aged 84 (registered October, Mansfield); Arthur died 1999 aged 90 (registered May, Mansfield).
In 1911 he was a coal miner/underground labourer. He was a pony driver (colliery) when he joined the Royal Navy in 1913.
05 Jun 1916
3038492 - CWGC Website
Stoker 1st Class
HMS Hampshire Royal Navy
James joined the Royal Navy on 18 March 1913 on a 12 year engagement. He served in the following ships and shore establishments: Victory II, 18 March 1913-2 September 1913 (Stoker 2nd Class); HMS Dryad, 3 September 1913-31 October 1913; Victory II, 1 November 1913-15 December 1913; HMS Europa, 16 December 1913-26 January 1914; HMS Hampshire, 27 January 1914-5 June 1916 (Stoker 1st Class 18 March 1914). Service record annotated: ‘NP 4098/1916. DD 5 June 1916 when HMS Hampshire was sunk by a mine.’ His body was not recovered for burial and he is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial. The armoured cruiser HMS Hampshire, on passage to north Russia, was sunk by a mine laid by a German submarine off Marwick Head, Orkney. Field Marshall Lord Kitchener, Secretary of State for War, his staff and 643 men were lost.
2016 - A First World War Centenary Wood devised by the Woodland Trust has been planted at Kirkwall, Orkney. The copse will be planted with 746 saplings to commemorate the 737 men lost in HMS Hampshire and also the nine men lost from the drifter Lauren Crown which struck a mine after she was sent to help clear the minefield.
Remembered on