Rolls of Honour: Eccleshill, Park & St Paul’s; Plymouth Naval Memorial
Regiment: Royal Navy
William Arthur Sugden
William Arthur Sugden was born on the 14th September 1893 in Bradford, the third of four children of John Greenwood Sugden and Annie, nee Lightowler.John died in 1899 at the age of 38 years and by 1901 Annie was living at 17 Manor Street, working as a stuff weaver and her eldest son Harold as a weftman. By 1911 Annie no longer needed to work as all four children were working, and at 17 years of age William was working as an apprentice weaving overlooker.
He enlisted in the Royal Navy on the 3rd of July 1916 as Ordinary Seaman J55032 and was engaged for the duration of the hostilities. He was 5”6’ in height, a chest measurement of 37”, brown hair and eyes with a fresh complexion. He served on the ship Vivid I from the 4th of July to the 15th of September 1916 and then on the President III until the 14th of December 1916 when he was transferred to HMS Russian which was a British Cargo horse transport ship sailing from Salonika to Newport in the United Kingdom.
The ship sailed that night during a violent thunderstorm and was torpedoed and sunk by U-Boat 43 210 miles east of Malta in the Mediterranean Sea. Seven boats were launched, six got away with 120 men and these were eventually rescued after an eight-hours fight with the storm and were landed at Malta. But one capsized and 28 men lost their lives, William being one of them. He was 23 years of age.He is remembered on the Plymouth Naval Memorial.
Researched and written by Jean Britteon, to whom many thanks