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Person Details
15 Jun 1897
Silloth Cumberland
He was the elder son of Dr George Martin LRCSI LRCPI and Margaret Emily Martin. His father, who like his mother was born in Ireland, was a general medical practitioner. Cecil was christened in Christ Church, Silloth, on 15 July 1897. In 1901 the George and Margaret were living at 4 Park Terrace, Silloth, Cumberland, with their two sons, Cecil (3) and George P. (2 months). Also in the household at the time of the census was a live-in servant, Margaret Bennett (23), and a professional nurse, Margaret Bolwerwell (40), presumably employed to care for Margaret and her son, George. His parents later lived at 27 Elm Avenue, Nottingham (CWGC).
He was educated at a preparatory school in Cumberland and later at St Bee's School, Cumberland. He was a member of Silloth Golf Club.
01 Nov 1914
17
3045192 - CWGC Website
5419
Clerk
HMS Monmouth Royal Navy
He joined the Royal Nay on 1 August 1914 as an assistant clerk (Naval Pay Department) and was appointed to HMS Monmouth which was lost with all hands at the Battle of Coronel. His body was not recovered for burial and he is commemorated on the Royal Naval Memorial, Plymouth. At the Battle of Coronel HMS Good Hope and HMS Monmouth were tracked by more heavily armed German vessels. Spee's flagship, Scharnhorst, engaged Good Hope while Gneisenau fired at Monmouth. The German shooting was very accurate, with both armoured cruisers quickly scoring hits on their British counterparts while still outside six-inch gun range, starting fires on both ships. Rear Admiral Christopher Cradock, knowing his only chance was to close the range, continued to do so despite the battering that Spee's ships inflicted. By 19:23 the range was almost half of that when the battle began and the British ships bore onwards. One shell from Gneisenau blew the roof off Monmouth 's forward turret and started a fire, causing an ammunition explosion that completely blew the turret off the ship. Admiral Spee tried to open the range, fearing a torpedo attack, but the British were only 5,500 yards (5,000 m) away at 19:35. Severely damaged, Monmouth began to slow and veered out of line. At 20:05 HMS Glasgow discovered Monmouth, listing and down by the bow, having extinguished her fires, 10 minutes later. She was trying to turn north to put her stern to the heavy northerly swell and was taking water at the bow. There was little that Glasgow could do to assist the larger ship as the moonlight illuminated both ships and the Germans were searching for them. The light cruiser Nürnberg had been trailing the German squadron and spotted the plume of smoke from Glasgow at 20:35, and then saw Monmouth with a 10-degree list to port shortly afterwards. As Nürnberg closed the range, Monmouth 's list increased so that none of the guns on her port side could be used. The German cruiser closed to within 600 yards (550 m) and illuminated her flag with its spotlight in the hopes that she would strike her colours and surrender. There was no response from the British ship and Nürnberg opened fire at 21:20, aiming high, but there was still no response. The German ship then fired a torpedo which missed and turned off its searchlight. Monmouth then increased speed and turned towards Nürnberg, which caused her to open fire again. Monmouth capsized at 21:58, taking her entire crew of 735 men with her as the seas were too rough to attempt any rescue effort. (Wikipedia)
(Photograph) MARTIN, CECIL TAYLOR, Assistant Clerk, R.N., elder s. of George Martin, of 4. Park Terrace, Silloth. L.R.C.S.I., L.R.C.P.I., by his wife, Margaret Emily, dau. of Robert Taylor; ft. Silloth, Co. Cumberland, 15 June. 1897 ; educ. Preparatory School there, Cherbourg. Malvern, and St. Bee's School, Cumberland; joined the Navy as Assistant Clerk, 1 Aug. 1914; was appointed to H.M.S. Monmouth, and was lost when that ship was sunk in the battle off Coronel, on the coast of Chile, 1 Nov. 1914. (UK De Ruvigny’s Roll of Honour 1914-1919) He is commemorated on St Bee's school memorial, Silloth Golf Club memorial (CT Martin) and Silloth war memorial: 'Liberty. To the glorious dead. In honour and loving appreciation of the men of this parish who fell in the Great War 1914-1918 and 1939-1945. Live thou for England, we for England died. They were a wall unto us both by night and by day. (1914 Assist Clerk CT Martin RN HMS Monmouth)' His parents installed a memorial (brass plaque) in Christ Church, Silloth, to his memory: 'In loving memory of Cecil Taylor Martin Assistant Clerk HMS Monmouth aged 17 years elder and dearly beloved son of George and Margaret Emily Martin killed in the action off the coast of Chile 1st November 1914 Blessed are the poor in heart for they shall see God'
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