war memorial at dusk, photographed by Michelle Cooper




From the Dover Express, October 30th 1914 

The Dover Fleet in Action

Falcon’s Misfortune

The Admiralty late last night issued the following communication – 

The British Naval Flotilla continues to support the Allies left, and since the morning of the 27th the fire of 12in. guns has been brought to bear upon the German positions and batteries. The reports received from shore testify to the effect and accuracy of the fire, and its galling character. The flank is thus thoroughly maintained.  

Yesterday and the day before the enemy brought up heavy guns and replied vigorously to the fore of Admiral Hood’s ships. The vessels only received trifling structural damage. Today the opposition from the shore has practically ceased, and the preponderance of the naval gunnery seems to be established. 

The casualties have been slight throughout, but one shell exploded on the destroyer “Falcon” killed one officer and eight men, and wounded one officer and fifteen men (*). One officer killed and several wounded are also reported from the “Brilliant” and eight wounded in the Rinaldo. A full list will be published as soon as possible. Enemy’s submarines have been reported seeking opportunity to attack the bombarding ships, which are covered by British destroyers.  

The news was generally known throughout Dover yesterday, that the destroyer “Falcon” had had eight men killed, including an officer as well as fifteen wounded. The bodies of the men were brought to Dover and placed in the mortuary at the Prince of Wales Pier, the wounded taken to Deal. The “Falcon” is one of the destroyers, which has been at Dover for a good many years, and the crew are well known in the town. The officer killed has been with the boat since 1912, and the deepest sympathy is felt throughout the town at the misfortune that befell the boat.

*28th October 1914

The Secretary of the Admiralty regrets to announce the following casualties

Killed. Wounded. Slightly Wounded.
Lieutenant Hubert O. Wauton Gunner R. N.  Mr. Ernest Smith. Stoker 1st Class Joseph Henry Bradford.
Stoker P. O. Charles Beaney Petty Officer Chappell. Able Seaman William George Coath.
Stoker 1st Class William Heathcote Gee Able Seaman Arthur Darwin. Able Seaman Robert Howle.
Able Seaman Harry Hedges Stoker 2nd Class William Farquhar. Chief Stoker Harry Shergold.
Able Seaman Ralph Nutt Leading Stoker Edward James Gollop.  
Able Seaman William Skye Stoker 2nd Class Walter Richard Howes.  
Able Seaman Adolphus Charles Sunderland Leading Seaman Arthur Frederick Jenkinson.  
Able Seaman Albert Ernest Vidler Officer's Steward 2nd Class Ernest Port.  
  Able Seaman George Reeves.  
  Stoker 2nd Class William Henry Robinson.  
  Leading Stoker William Henry Sharman  
  Stoker 1st Class Thomas Alfred Storer.  


The Falcon Disaster. 

Funeral of Lieut. H. O. Wauton.


Impressive scenes were witnessed on Saturday afternoon, when Lieut. H. O. Wauton, one of the unfortunate victims of the disaster to HM.S. “Falcon” was interred at Charlton Cemetery with full naval honours in the presence of a very large number of people.


The band of the 3rd East Surrey Regiment preceded the coffin, which was borne to the cemetery upon a gun carriage. The deceased father followed directly behind the gun carriage. Naval officers acted as pallbearers, and seaman as bearers, and a number of officers and men, with a firing party followed the cortege, including representatives of the Dover Garrison.

At the conclusion of the service three volleys were fired, the “First Post” and “Second Post” being sounded by a naval trumpeter in the intervals, and concluding with the “Last Post.” 


The principal mourners were the Rev. Atherton Wauton (father) Mrs. Wauton (step mother) Miss Winifred Wauton (sister) Mr. Charles Wauton (uncle) Miss Catherine Curtis (aunt) Messrs. Frederick D. Curtis, Charles L. Curtis and Walter T. Curtis (uncles) and Mr. A. P. Braybrooke.


The coffin bore the following inscription – “Hubert Osmond Wauton, Lieut, died October 28th 1914, aged 29 years.”

Floral tributes were sent as follows – To my darling Hubert, with my best love, from his sister, To my darling Hubert, in ever loving remembrance from his devoted aunt, from Ruthie and Walter, in loving memory from Uncle Fred and Charlie, with best love, from Betty, with loving memory and sincere regret from, Grandmother Curtis, October 30th (T.W.) Captain and Ward Room Officers H.M.S “Foresight” with sincere sympathy from a friend (Dover). With deepest regret, from Mr. and Mrs Hodgkin’s Saul, with deep regret and sincerest sympathy, from Mr. and Mrs Arthur H. V. Rollaston.

The funeral arrangements were carried out by Mr. J. Parsons.



Hubert Wauton's headstone, by Joyce Banks

Lieut. Hubert Wauton, R.N.
Commander of H.M.S. Falcon
Fell in Action
Oct. 28 1914
He Did His Duty

Jesu Mercy.

(Plot No. Q. H. 12)


Two other servicemen, who lost their lives in WW1, are buried nearby in Charlton cemetery.

Lieutenant Hugh Stanton Hornby, who was in command of H.M. submarine 26, died 1st May 1916 in the Royal Victoria Hospital Dover, age 26 years. Hugh was buried with full naval honours. Plot No. Q. H. 4.

Flight Lieutenant Harold Rosher was killed whilst flying over Dover February 27th 1916. The disaster happened just before the sinking of the “SS Maloja” Harold aged 22 years was buried with full naval honours. Plot No. Q. H 8.

Compiled by J. Banks.

Copyright 2006 © Marilyn Stephenson-Knight. All Rights Reserved