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Person Details
12 Jun 1893
Hyson Green Nottingham
Horace James was the only son of James and Ada Priscilla Chappell (nee Woodward). His father, James, was the son of William and Mary Chappell and born in Calverton, Nottinghamshire, in 1875. James was baptised at St Wilfrid's parish church, Calverton, on 24 February 1875. His mother, Ada Priscilla, was born in Bulwell in 1876 (J/F/M Basford/Osborne), the daughter of John and Ann Woodward. They were married in 1892 (O/N/D Basford) and had two children: Horace James b. 1893 (J/A/S Nottingham) and Florence (Florrie) b. 9 November 1894 (O/N/D Nottingham). Both children were born in Hyson Green. In 1901 James (27), a painter and paperhanger (own account), and Ada (25), a shopkeeper (sweets), were living at 137 Gladstone Street, Nottingham, with their two children Horace (7) and Florrie (6). The famiy had moved to 67 Monsall Street, Nottingham by 1911. James (38) was still working as a house painter, but Ada (36) was now working as a lace mender. Horace (17) was a lace machine fitter while Florrie (16) was a pinafore machinist. The family home was at 65 Monsall Street at the time of Horace's death in 1916 but the later CWGC record gives the address as 63 Monsall Street. His parents were living at 4 Sneinton Road, Nottingham, when his father was killed in an accident on 25 May 1925. (See 'Extra Information' for reports of James' death.) His mother Ada was living at 77 Radford Bridge Road at the time of her death on 20 January 1961 (J/F/M Nottingham). Horace's sister, Florrie, married Frank Housden in 1922 (J/A/S Nottingham). In 1939 she and Frank (b. 7 September 1895) were living at The Grange, Winthorpe Grange, Newark, Nottinghamshire. Frank was working as a chauffeur/groom. Florrie died in 1989 (Spilsby Lincolnshire).
He was a lace machine fitter in 1911 and his occupation given as fitter when he joined the Royal Navy in 1913
31 May 1916
23
2876114 - CWGC Website
M/6579
Armourer's Crew
HMS Black Prince Royal Navy
Horace's RN record gives his date of birth as 12 June 1895 although the birth registration record is dated 1893 and the CWGC record gives his age as 23. He joined the Royal Navy as an Ordinary Seaman on a Short Service Engagement (5 years RN, 7 years Royal Fleet Reserve) on 10 July 1913 (SS4362). However, he transferred to a Continuous Service Engagement (12 years RN) on 13 August 1913 and rated Armourer Gunner. He served in the following ships and shore establishments: Victory 1, 10 July 1913-13 August 1913 (Ordinary Seaman); Victory I, 13 August 1913-16 August 1913 (Armourer Gunner), HMS Excellent, 17 August 1913-20 April 1914 (Armourer Crew, 9 December 1913); HMS Black Prince, 21 April 1914-31 May 1916. His service record was annotated:'NP4065/1916. DD [Discharged Dead] 31st May 1916. Killed in Action.' Horace's body was not recovered for burial and he is commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memoria.l
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.' Nottingham Evening Post, ‘Deaths/Roll of Honour’, 7 June 1916: Chappell. Killed in action. Horace James, Armourer, HMS Black Prince, only son of James and Ada Chappell, 65 Monsall-street. He nobly did his duty. Deeply mourned by mother, father and sister.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, ‘In Memoriam. 1914-1918’, 1 June 1925: ‘Chappell. Horace James, HMS Black Prince, killed in action, Jutland, May 31st, son of the late James Chappell. Heroes.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 26 May 1925 (with photograph of James Chappell): ‘A Nottingham Hero. Man gives his life to save children. Tragedy of a runaway motor lorry. In an act of gallantry which saved the lives of three small children, James Chappell, aged 49, a paperhanger and decorator, 4, Sneinton-road, Nottingham, early last evening forfeited his own life. The story told to the Post reveals an act of supreme heroism. A motor lorry belonging to the Home Brewery Company, Daybrook, and in charge of Frederick Charles Hartland, 29, Peveril-street, Nottingham, had turned into Haywood-street from Sneinton-road and had ascended a short by-street on the right known Keswick-street. This hill if not particularly steep, is at least pronounced, and was a factor in the terrible tragedy which ensued. Outside the Dog and Pheasant public-house, Hartland left the lorry temporarily unattended while he delivered goods. The heavy vehicle commence to run down the hill. Paralysed by fear. Three small children - their ages probably anything from four to seven – were either playing in, or passing along, Haywood-street, at the foot of Keswick-street as the runaway – now travelling at an alarming pace – descended upon them with paralysing force. Fortunately for the children, who were too terrified to save themselves, Mr Chappell – in his overalls – was passing at the time. He was apparently on his way home at the foot of Sneinton-road, where the family keeps a tobacconist‘s shop. The children screamed in terror. Mr Chappell appears to have taken in the situation in one tragic glance. Instead of ensuring his own safety, he deliberately courted death in order to preserve the helpless children, He had just succeeded in flinging them clear when the lorry bore down upon him. He was a fraction too late to save himself. The bonnet of the lorry caught him and pinned him against the house wall of 7 Haywood-street, immediately to the right of the window. The violence of the impact was such that a gap was made in the wall of the living-room large enough for a man to climb through ...The injuries inflicted upon the hapless victim were too dreadful to describe. His body was literally reduced to a pulp. Death was instantaneous. A cyclist hurried off to inform the police and to summon the ambulance. A constable in the vicinity was quickly on the scene and the ambulance followed directly afterwards. It was obvious, of course, that Mr Chappell was beyond human aid, but there being no doctor on the spot to certify death, the body was first removed to the General Hospital, and subsequently to the Leenside mortuary. Mr Chappell’s daughter was serving in the shop when a rumour first reached her that it was her father who had met with so tragic an end … The circumstances in which the lorry got out of control are, of course, a matter for investigation by the Coroner. The tragedy created a sensation in Sneinton, hundreds of people visiting Haywood-street to gaze at the damage done to the house long after the lorry had been removed.’ (www.britishnewspaperaachive.co.uk) Photographs of the damage to the property were published in the Nottingham Evening Post on 26 May 1925. Nottingham Evening Post, 28 May 1925 (extract): ‘Nottingham Hero. How James Chappell gave his life to save children. The runaway lorry tragedy. No blame attached to men in charge of vehicle. The heroic act of James Chappell, 49, paperhanger and decorator, of 4, Sneinton-road, Nottingham, in sacrificing himself in a successful attempt to save the lives of four children from a runaway motor lorry in Haywood-street, Sneinton, on Monday, was inquired into by the City Coroner (Mr. CL Rothera) to-day. After hearing exhaustive evidence as to the condition in which the lorry was left, the efficacy of the brakes, &c, the jury returned a verdict of ‘Accidental death’, and found that no blame was attached to the men in charge of the vehicle. The Coroner said there was no doubt Chappell lost his life in saving the lives of others.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 29 May 1925: ‘Nottingham Hero’s Funeral (extract). Many sympathisers and floral tributes. The funeral of Mr James Chappell, 49,of 4, Sneinton-road, Nottingham, who was kiled after a successful attempt to get four little children out of the way of a runaway motor lorry in Haywood-street, on Monday, took place at Wilford Hill cemetery to-day. A large crowd of sympathising friends assembled to witness the passing of the cortege. The chief mourners were the widow and daughter of deceased, and near relations. ‘ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 20 August 1925: ‘Local Happenings. Effort to aid widow of Nottm. Hero. For the benefit of the widow and other dependents of James Chappell who lost his life in helping a child out of the track of a runaway motor lorry in Nottingham about three months ago, a concert is being organised by local members of the Order of Buffaloes.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Nottingham Evening Post, 12 February 1926 (extract): ‘A Nottingham Hero. Life Given For Little Girl. Lorry Fatality. Rescued Child Since Killed By Another Motor. During the hearing of a claim for compensation at Nottingham Assizes to-day, arising out of the runaway lorry incident in Keswick-street on May 25th, when James Chappell, a painter and decorator, was killed in saving some children, it transpired that one of the children whom he saved, a little girl named Emma Tyers of Hayward-street, was killed three weeks ago by another lorry. The plaintiff was Ada Priscilla Chappell, the widow, of 4 Sneinton-road, who claimed compensation from the Home Brewery Company, the owners of the lorry, in respect of her husband’s death, alleging that this was due to the defendants’ negligence.’ (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) Probate: Chappell Ada Priscilla of 77 Radford Bridge Road Nottingham widow died20 January 1961 Administration Nottingham 16 March to Florrie Housden (wife of Frank Housden). Effects £148
Remembered on