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The Urry Brothers and William Richardson of the Isle of Wight Rifles

The Urry Brothers and William Richardson

B Company at Sandown Barracks Dec 1914



When Florence Richardson married Edward Urry on 17th March 1906 in Newport, Isle of Wight she married into a local family. Her father Alfred worked with leather, as a tanner and she came from a family of 7 children, who moved to Newport from Chichester in the late 1880s

Edward Urry had trained as a blacksmith, but was a member of the 5th Hampshire Volunteers and signed up on 10th Aug 1904 in Sandown for a 3-year period as a driver. Discharged after only 74 days as “not suitable” he returned Newport where he worked for Bright and Minns in their dye works. In his spare time he joined the Isle of Wight Rifles in 1910

Edward’s father George Urry, was a journeyman carpenter, a Newport man who lived for some years in Dorset. He returned to set up a carpenter’s yard in Orchard Street, Newport, near to where the Library is 100 years later. His mother, Emma, was from Honiton Devon and they had four sons; Edward, Arthur, William (Bill) and Frederick and three daughters, Clara, Edward’s twin, plus Ethel and Gertrude.


By early 1915 Edward and Florence Urry had five children themselves; three girls and two boys, with their last daughter, Ivy Urry born on 1 Jan 1915. Florence’s brother William Richardson was living with them in Clifford St. Newport, working as a carriage painter and Edward’s brothers were still living in Orchard St, with their parents.


B Company prepare for Gallipoli.

The Urry lads and William, were in training for war. They were keen members of the IW Rifles Territorials. Edward had joined in 1910 when he was 30 and the youngest, Fred in 1911 at the age of 17. Florence’s brother, William Richardson, joined in 1913 age 18 and Bill Urry joined them in 1914. All would have been with B company in training and attended camps each year. They all signed up for war service with the Isle of Wight Rifles. The photo heading this story was sent as a Christmas card in 1914 shows all of the Urry lads and William at Sandown Barracks. They are in matching sweaters alongside a few others in regular uniforms, and probably were the members of the B Coy Football Team. The owner of this photograph was their coach and goalkeeper.


The photo heading this story is from Leonard Ledicott’s collection sent to his wife and shows three sturdy Urry brothers in the second row. Left of Len, is William Richardson. Next to Leonard who is in uniform behind the Sergeant Jack Denham is Fred Urry then Edward and an unknown soldier and at the end with arms folded is Bill Urry.We know from the County Press booklet issued in 1915 that Edward, Fred and Bill Urry were in B Company along with their Brother-in-Law William Richardson. Tragically for their loved ones, they were all killed on the 12th August 1915.

Edward (35) Bill (26) and Frederick (21) along with William Richardson 21, stepped onto the beach at Suvla Bay on August 10th 1915 and died in the advance across Kuchuk, Anafarta Ova. None have a known grave and all are commemorated on the Helles Memorial to the Missing on the same day, the 12th of August 1915.

 Soldiers’ Effects

In preparation for active service soldiers were required to make a will and have a photograph taken in uniform. The register of their wishes is available to the public today from Government sources, as the Army Register of Soldiers’ Effects.

This register gives an insight into the minds of the men as they prepared for war as each soldier had his photo taken and made a will, deciding on who might benefit in event of their death in battle. Men choose their wives and sweethearts, many their mothers or fathers. Edward’s wife Florence received £2 10s in October 1916 and a further £3.10 War Gratuity in August 1919. By this time she had found a new father for her five children.

Florence’s brother William chose his father Alfred and in September 1916 he was paid £2-7s followed by a war gratuity of £3 10s on 23rd September1919.

Bill Urry chose his mother who received £2 3 2d in Nov 1916 and £3 war gratuity in August 1919 but we can see that Fred Urry, the youngest, had his brother’s children at heart and their details can be seen below.

Soldiers’ Effects (copied from the original)

Frederick Albert Urry 8th Hants Regiment Pte 853 Died 12.8.15 on or since death presumed

Account managed in Exeter 8.16

11/1916           £2   5s 9d        Mrs Emily

12/1916           £7 11s 5d        Mrs Emily

                        £2   9s 6d       Sister Clara

                        £2   9s 7d       Florence L (for children-sister in law’s children)

                        £2   9s 6d       Sister Gertrude Fanny Florrie

15/9/19            £3 10s WAR GRATUITY Mrs Emily



URRY Edward George b 4 Jul 1880 Rifleman 670 1/8th Hamps d 12 Aug 1915 Gallipoli married 1906  Florence Laura Richardson

Children Irene Florence 1906-1967

Cecil Alfred George 1908-1960

Leslie Horace Urry 1909 – 1985

Ruby Clara Kate (Kit) Urry 1912-1994

Ivy Mabel URRY 1915-2002


URRY Albert b 1885 d 1933 Newport

URRY William Henry Pte 2032 1/8th Hamps b 1890  d 12 Aug 1915 Gallipoli

URRY Frederick Albert Rfn 863 1/8th Hamps b 1894 d 12 Aug 1915 Gallipoli



1881 Melcombe Regis Dorset

2 Grove Buildings

George Urry Head Mar 32 Carpenter Journeyman   b Hants Newport

Emma Wife Mar 24                                                     b Devon Honiton

Clara Urry Daur 9 mo

Edward G Son 9 mo                                                    born Weymouth (Twins)


1891 Whippingham IW

George Urry Head M 42  Carpenter                         b Newport IW

Emily Urry wife 34                                                      b Honiton Devon

Clara daur 10                                                             all born Weymouth

Edward son 10

Ethel daur 8

Alfred son 6

Gertrude daur 3

William son 1  


1901 Census 42 (Yard) Orchard St Newport

George URRY Head M 52 Carpenter                        b Newport IW

Emily URRY Wife M                                                   b Honiton Devon

Edward 25 Blacksmith                                                b Weymouth

Ethel Daur first 4 children                                          all born in Weymouth

Alfred age 16

Gertrude age 13

William age 11

Frederick  age 7                                                          b Newport IW


CENSUS 1911 42 Orchard St (Carpenters Yard) Newport

George Urry Head M 60 Carpenter                                                  b Newpor

Emily Urry Wife M 55 married 31 years 7 children born 6 alive       b Honiton Devon

Alfred Urry Son S 26 Labourer                                                           b Weymouth

Gertrude Urry Dau S 23                                                                     B Weymouth

William Urry Son 21 S Labourer                                                        b Weymouth

Frederick Urry Son 17 S Carriage Painter                                          b Newport


In 1906 Edward Urry married Florence Laura Richardson in Newport Register Office

CENSUS 1911 45 Trafalgar Rd Newport

Edward URRY Head     Dyers Cleaner Worker                     b Weymouth Dorset

Florence Laura URRY Wife Married 5 years 3 children born 3 alive b Chichester

Irene Florence Urry Daughter age 4 children all bron Newport IW

Cecil Alfred George Urry Son age 3

Leslie Horace Urry Son age 1

 (Source Census sheets from Ancestry.co.uk transcribed by Lin Watterson)


Florence remarried in 1917 to Frederick George Palmer at St Mary’s Carisbrooke and lived in 30 Clifford Street Newport as Mrs Palmer but by 1932 she was living in Battersea London.


Alfred does not appear in any roll of honour. He was married in 1913 at the age of 28 to Charlotte Jane Plumbley in Godshill Church. Charlotte died in 1978.

They had one son Frederick Henry Alfred URRY born in Newport in 1922.

Alfred worked at Morey’s Woodyard in Trafalgar Road for many years and then for Saunders Roe in East Cowes. Alfred was not fit for army service as he had lost a finger from his right hand in an accident. This stopped him from using a rifle. Reference (jacksontree.co.uk)

As a family there was one more sadness to deal with as Alfred was attacked in the street by a 34 year old  ex-soldier with the Royal Ulster Rifles, “Tommy” (Robert) Clay. A man he knew from the local football club.

The County Press of 26th Aug 1933 tells how an unprovoked attack caused head injuries, but Alfred was carried home by his attacker who told Charlotte that her husband was drunk and needed to sleep. The doctor was called at 4am and found him dead.

His attacker was convicted of manslaughter and given one year hard labour in prison.

(Source IW County Press Archives)






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