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Men on the Albert Schools WWI Memorial

WWI War Memorial Plaque found in the Albert Schools Building

Marmaduke Cooper and familyOriginally from the Union Rooms Mission Church

There are eight men named on the WWI War Memorial plaque recovered by the Marple Website from the Albert Schools in 2019 and now restored and on display in Marple URC Church on Hibbert Lane.

The War Memorial from the Union Rooms Mission Church

Seven of the men have well established local connections and are commemorated on the Cenotaph in Marple Memorial Park but the inclusion of Marmaduke Cooper was at first less clear. With the help of Marple Local History Society and "Lest We Forget" Hollingworth we now have a much better understanding of how Marmaduke came to be named on this recently rediscovered War Memorial.

What links these eight men together?

The War Memorial was orginally located in the Union Rooms Mission Church, and that is the location referred to in the last sentence of the enscription: "Formerly associated with this place of worship". We know this because there is a record of the War Memorial being added to a list assets transferred from the Union Rooms to the Albert Schools when the former was closed and sold in 1931.

Below are the cards from the WWI Timeline in Marple Memorial Park for the seven Marple men featured on the Cenotaph in the park, plus additional material about Marmaduke Cooper provided by "Lest We Forget" Hollingworth and orginally researched by author Tony Catchpole for his book "A Simple Cross of Cornish Granite" that helps to explain his inclusion on the Memorial too.

John Brown: KIA 29 April 1917

John Brown

John Brown 44828 enlisted Hyde, 27 years old when killed 29/4/17.

Lived 104 Hilldrop Terrace, Stockport Rd. Worked at Hollins Mill.
Attended Marple Wesleyan Sunday School and Marple Union Rooms Mission Church.
Remembered on Marple Methodist Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Joesph Burrell: KIA 25 September 1916

Joe Burrell

Joseph Burrell 24578 enlisted Hyde, 18 years old when killed 25/9/16.

Lived Hollins Side, Stockport Rd. Worked at Hollins Mill.
Attended Marple Unitarian Church and Sunday School.
Remembered on Marple Reformed Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Harold Cooke: KIA 2 September 1918

Harold Cooke

Harold Cooke 44060 Enlisted Chester, 19 years old when killed 2/9/18.

Lived 18 Hollins Terrace.
Remembered on All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Marmaduke Cooper: KIA 25 March 1918

Marmaduke Cooper and family
Marmaduke and Lizzie Cooper with children L-R: Olive, Dorothy, baby Clifford and Doris.

Marmaduke Cooper: Private 50238; 9th Battalion Cheshire Regiment

One of five children of Joseph and Elizabeth Cooper, three of whom died in infancy, Marmaduke Cooper was born on December 8th, 1882, at Mottram Moor, Hollingworth. He was baptised at Hollingworth United Methodist Church on January 7th, 1883. In 1887, in a school roll, his address was given as 14, Well Row. He attended Hollingworth British School and Newton Moor Church of England School.

The 1891 census shows the family living on Back Market Street; in 1894 at Atherton Square; in 1901 the family lived at 120 Market Street, Hollingworth and Marmaduke was a grocer's assistant.

Marmaduke married Lizzie Moores on June 9th, 1906 at Bethel Methodist Church, Stalybridge. Marmaduke’s life had changed considerably by 1911. The census shows that he, his wife Lizzie and two daughters Doris and Olive Mary, were living at 37 Prestbury Road, Macclesfield and Marmaduke was an Assistant Superintendent, Life Assurance, for the Prudential Insurance company.

Olive Mary is recorded as being born in Marple on 27 January 1909, so the family must have lived here for a period sometime either side of Olive's birth. It must have been during this period that Marmaduke, and presumably the family too, became associated with the Union Rooms Mission Church.

It is interesting that even though their stay in Marple can only have been for a few years prior to 1911, Marmaduke was well enough remembered to be included on the Union Rooms Mission Church war memorial after the end of the war in 1918.

Marmaduke and Lizzie went on to have two more children, Dorothy Margaret in 1913, place of birth not recorded, and Clifford Moores, recorded as being born in Stockport in 1915. So even after 1911 the family's movements are not completely clear.

Marmaduke enlisted at Chester in August 1915 aged 32, first joining the Cheshire Yeomanry as Private 1812, then 5522. The address he gave was 79 Market Street, Hollingworth. In December 1916 he became Private 50238, 9th Battalion Cheshire Regiment. On enlistment, Marmaduke stood 5ft 9ins tall and had a chest measurement of 36 inches.

Private Cooper was reported missing, presumed killed in action, aged 35 on March 25th, 1918. He was awarded the British War and Victory medals.

His widow, on enquiring if there was a scheme to assist her to visit the grave without too much expense, was advised to contact the Salvation Army. She was awarded 33s 9d per week (about £1.70) for herself and her four children. Marmaduke had made a Will in November 1911, and bequeathed everything he had to his wife.

Private Cooper is remembered on Hollingworth War Memorial, the recently rediscovered Union Rooms Mission Church Memorial and on the Arras Memorial, Pas-de-Calais, France, bay 5 & 6.

Burt Morris: KIA 7 June 1917

Burt Morris

Burt Morris, 50473, enlisted Stockport, 21 years old when killed 7/6/17.

Lived "Canal Buildings". Worked at Hollins Mill.
Attended Union Rooms Sunday School.
Remembered St. Martin's Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Fred Pickford: DoW 25 October 1918

Fred Pickford

Fred Pickford, 76896, enlisted Stockport, 22 years old when killed 25/10/18.

Lived 46 Market Street.
Attended Marple Recreation Club; Marple Union Mission Church and Sunday School.
Remembered on Carver Recreation Club Roll of Honour; Marple Methodist Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Note: Fred's brother Raymond (age 24 when killed 8/10/18) was a member of Marple Band, attended Albert Day School as a boy and All Saints' Sunday School.

Fred Thelwall: DoW 28 July 1916

Fred Thelwall

Fred Thelwall, 34742, enlisted Hyde, 23 years old when killed 28/7/16.

Lived 9 Chapel St. Worked at Hollins Mill.
Attended Marple Congregational Church Sunday School.
Remembered on Marple Reformed Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Samuel Thelwall: KIA 25 October 1917

Samuel Thelwall

Samuel Thelwall, 26454, enlisted Hyde, 20 years old when killed 25/10/17.

Lived 29 St James Terrace, Hollins Lane.
Remembered on Marple Reformed Church plaque; All Saints WM; Marple WM.

Acknowledgements

The Book: “REMEMBERED – Marple Men who fell in The Great War” by P Clarke, A Cook and J Bintliff. This book and the research behind it carried out by the authors is a key source for the cards about the Marple men and would not have been possible without their efforts. Unfortunately the book is out of print but there are reference copies available at Marple Library.

"Lest We Forget" Hollingworth for information provided about Marmaduke Cooper's life story and Tony Catchpole for all his hard work and research for "A Simple Cross of Cornish Granite", his book about the men on Hollingworth's War Memorial, on which Marmaduke's information was based.

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