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  • Photograph was published 26th June 1916 in the Nottingham Evening Post and is courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
Person Details
06 Jan 1888
Arnold, Nottingham
Wallace was born on 6th January 1888 (J/F/M Basford) in Arnold. The census records for 1891 and 1901 show that he and his sister Alice Lane (b. 1890 A/M/J Basford) were living in Arnold with their grandparents, Thomas and Sarah Lane. There is no indication on the census returns or other records of the identity of Wallace's parents nor that any of the other grandchildren who lived with Thomas and Sarah at various times had the same parents. However, another researcher has recorded that Wallace's father served in the Royal Navy and was also at the Battle of Jutland in which Wallace died. There is no evidence that any of Thomas and Sarah's surviving sons served in the Royal Navy which suggests that one of their unmarried daughters was their mother. (For a more detailed family history see the record for Alonso Lane.) Thomas and Sarah had 16 children of whom only nine were still living at the time of the 1911 census by when Thomas and Sarah had been married for 49 years. In 1891 Thomas and Sarah had nine children living at home in High Street, Arnold, together with their two grandchildren, Wallace (3) and Alice (1). In 1901 Thomas and Sarah were still living on High Street; only five of their children were in the household but they also had four grandchildren living with them: Walter Lane (19), Wallace (13), Alice (11) and Alfred Lane (1m.) Wallace's sister, Alice, was still living with her grandparents at 21 High Street in 1911 by which time Wallace had joined the Royal Navy. She was his nominated next of kin and was notified of Wallace's death in 1916; she was by then married to Alfred Straw (1913 A/M/J Basford)) and living on Bolts Row, Arnold. Two of Wallace's cousins also died in the war: 799255 Private William Lane, 11th Bn Northumberland Fusiliers, the son of John Thomas Lane, who was killed in action on 30 July 1916 (Thiepval Memorial) and 265950 Private John Thomas Lane 7th Bn Sherwood Foresters, the son of Harry Lane, who was killed on 27 May 1917 (Loos British Cemetery). (See T2T records) Wallace's uncle, Alonzo, Thomas and Sarah's youngest surviving child, served in the Royal Engineers in the latter part of the war. He committed suicide on 22 May 1919 aged 29 shortly before he was due to be discharged from the Army. (See T2T record, Alonso (sic) Lane).
In 1901 Wallace was a brewer's glass washer. When he enlisted in the Royal Navy in 1905 he was a gardener's boy.
31 May 1916
3037044 - CWGC Website
Leading Seaman
HMS Black Prince Royal Navy
It is known that Wallace followed in his father's footsteps in joining the Royal Navy. Wallace joined as a Boy Seaman on 10 February 1905 and his first ship was Boscawen III. He then served in the following ships and shore establishments: HMS Hawke (13 May 1905-10 September 1905), HMS Victory I (11 September 1905-23 September 1905), HMS Revenge (24 September 1905-23 October 1905), HMS Glory (24 October 1905-30 October 1906, rated Ordinary Seaman 6 January 1906), he was drafted 31 October 1906-4 March 1907 (name of ship illegible in the record), King Edward VII (5 March 1907-31 July 1911), HMS Excellent (1 August 1911-26 March 1912, rated Able Seaman 29 November 1911), HMS Pomone (27 March1912-9 April 1912), HMS Hecla (10 April 1912-30 April 1912) and HMS Black Prince (1 May 1912-31 May 1916, rated Leading Seaman 1 May). HMS Black Prince was an Iron Clad Cruiser which took part in the Battle of Jutland in 1916. Wallace was aged 28 years at the time he went down with his ship on 31 May 1916. His father, who was serving on another ship in the fleet, saw the Black Prince go down and later learnt that his son had gone down with her. Wallace's body was not recovered for burial and his name is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial.
HMS Black Prince was sunk at Jutland on May 31st 1916. The circumstances surrounding her loss were unclear for many years because there were no positive sightings of Black Prince after 17.42. Recent historians hold to the German account of the ship's sinking. Black Prince briefly engaged the German battleship Rheinland at about 23:35 GMT, scoring two hits with 6-inch shells. Separated from the rest of the British fleet, the Black Prince approached the German lines at approximately midnight. She turned away from the German battleships, but it was too late. The German battleship Thüringen fixed the Black Prince in her searchlights and opened fire. Up to five other German ships, including battleships Nassau, Ostfriesland, and Friedrich der Grosse, joined in the bombardment, with return fire from Black Prince being ineffective. Most of the German ships were between 750 and 1500 yards of the Black Prince - effectively point blank range for contemporary naval gunnery. Black Prince was hit by at least twelve heavy shells and several smaller ones, sinking within 15 minutes. There were no survivors from Black Prince's crew, all 857 being killed. Nottingham Post obituary (abridged), 18 July 1916: 'Lane. Killed in action May 31st, Leading Stoker Wallace Lane, HMS Black Prince, aged 28.' The Bundeswehr Museum of Military History, Dresden: Painting, oil on canvas: ‘SMS Thueringen destroys the English cruiser Black Prince in a night battle at 2am on 1 June.’ Clause Bergen (1885-1964). Caption: 'Present given by the commander of Thueringen, Captain Hans Kuesel, to his nephew in 1921. Bergen established his reputation as a marine painter with depictions of the Battle of Jutland (31 May-1 June 1916). When the Imperial German Fleet returned home, he was in Wilhelmshaven and asked officers involved in the battle to give him detailed accounts of the events.'
Remembered on


  • Photograph was published 26th June 1916 in the Nottingham Evening Post and is courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
    Wallace Lane - Photograph was published 26th June 1916 in the Nottingham Evening Post and is courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918