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Stroma, Caithness

 
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ADP



Joined: 13 Jun 2008
Posts: 466
Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:32 pm    Post subject: Stroma, Caithness Reply with quote

Memorial: Stroma (Island), Caithness
Location: almost at the centre of the Island of Stroma, Caithness
Grid Ref: ND351773
WMR: 6036
Count: WWI=6, WWII=6


Stroma's last inhabitants (apart from lighthousekeepers?) left the island in 1962. I think there is a summer tourist boat trip available to the island from John o' Groats. So in the meantime until such time as someone can get there and photograph the war memorial for the forum, can this link to the Caithness Community Website be accepted as a stand-in?

http://www.caithness.org/atoz/stromamain/stroma8july2001/stromawarmemorial.htm

ADP


Last edited by ADP on Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:07 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Adam Brown
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Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 7356
Location: Edinburgh (From Sutherland)

PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ADP

I recently joined the Caithness.Org forum and posted a message about this project so I'm hoping we'll attract some Caithness folk who may be able to get us photographs of Stroma (and the other Caithness memorials we don't have)

Regards

Adam
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Adam Brown
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Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 7356
Location: Edinburgh (From Sutherland)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Accordig to the Roll of Honour 'Caithness and the War' this Stroma man was lost on the SS Stockport.

SMITH, DONALD
Rank: Able Seaman
Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
Unit Text: S.S. Stockport (Grimsby)
Age: 30
Date of Death: 25/02/1943
Additional information: Son of Donald and Georgina Smith; husband of Janet L. Smith, of Wick, Caithnesshire.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 102.
Memorial: TOWER HILL MEMORIAL

For more information on the loss of the Stockport see here:

http://scottishwargraves.phpbbweb.com/viewtopic.php?t=563

His brother Nicol (one L on memorial) also died during the war.

SMITH, NICHOLL ANDREW
Rank: Stoker 1st Class
Regiment/Service: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M. Submarine 'Grampus'
Age: 24
Date of Death: 24/06/1940
Service No: C/KX 89128
Additional information: Son of Donald and Georgina Smith; husband of Gladys Smith, of Leicester.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: 38, 3.
Memorial: CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL

The Grampus was sunk by Italian MTB's off Syracuse, Sicily whilst on mine laying duties.

Adam
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Adam Brown
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Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 7356
Location: Edinburgh (From Sutherland)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 10:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And here are the other Second World War names

DUNDAS, CECIL THOMAS
Rank: Third Officer
Regiment/Service: Merchant Navy
Unit Text: S.S. Jumna (London)
Age: 23
Date of Death: 25/12/1940
Additional information: Son of Matthew and Ann Dundas.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 59.
Memorial: TOWER HILL MEMORIAL

ROBERTSON, MALCOLM
Initials: M
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Marine
Regiment/Service: Royal Marines
Unit Text: R.M. Group, M.N.B.D.O.1.
Age: 21
Date of Death: 23/05/1941
Service No: CH/X100806
Additional information: Son of John and Annie Robertson.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 84.
Memorial: CHATHAM NAVAL MEMORIAL

SINCLAIR, DAVID SIMPSON
Rank: Able Seaman
Regiment/Service: Royal Navy
Unit Text: H.M.S. Rawalpindi
Age: 39
Date of Death: 23/11/1939
Service No: D/SS 9484
Additional information: Son of Peter and Margaret Sindair, of Stroma, Caithness-shire.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 33, Column 3.
Memorial: PLYMOUTH NAVAL MEMORIAL


SMITH, WILLIAM
Rank: Private
Regiment/Service: Parachute Regiment, A.A.C.
Unit Text: 3rd Bn.
Age: 23
Date of Death: 19/09/1944
Service No: 1826449
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: 19. A. 2.
Cemetery: ARNHEM OOSTERBEEK WAR CEMETERY
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stclair15



Joined: 21 Jun 2011
Posts: 1
Location: Derbyshire (from Caithness)

PostPosted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 4:55 pm    Post subject: Stroma War Memorial Reply with quote

In 1918 the inhabitants of Stroma raised funds of 1,489 for the war effort, which was an enormous amount in those days. This represented just over 5 for every person on the island. After the end of World War I it was decided to use the remainder of this money to build a Memorial Hall and this was nearly completed when a gale damaged it so badly that it had to be demolished. The wood was sold and the money put into a bank account.

In 1948 it was decided that the money should be used for a Memorial Plaque commemorating the dead of both World Wars, which was to be placed in the Church of Scotland. The balance was donated to the new harbour fund. The plaque was dedicated in April 1948 by the Rev. W. Fulton of Canisbay.

Around 1970 James Simpson, who had purchased the island in 1960, wanted to use the church as a store and therefore an approach was made to the Canisbay Church to have it erected there. However, the Church of Scotland had decreed that no plaques would be placed in their buildings. A proposal was then made that a War Memorial, incorporating the plaque, should be erected on Stroma. A team of volunteers then started work on the memorial. The base was built with stones from the school and boulders from the shore. Pat Simpson made a concrete cross with a harled surface. The new memorial was erected on the foundations of the old Memorial Hall, thus coming full circle. It was dedicated by the Rev. William MacDonald, Canisbay, on 19th July 1975 in front of a congregation of around 150 people who had been ferried across to Stroma. My mother attended the ceremony, as tribute to my late father's two brothers and other relatives who were lost in the second World War.

The Memorial stands on the highest point in the middle of the island, between the Church and the school, and can be seen from almost everywhere on the island. It is a lonely and heart-breaking sight.

In 1939, out of a population of around 160 almost one quarter, 36, fought with the armed forces. Six of them never returned.

These photos are not very good quality but, I think, they bring home the fact that these people were not just names on a plaque but real people who lived, and loved, and gave their lives so that we could live in freedom.

Able Seaman Donald Smith (my Uncle Donnie):


Seaman Nicol Smith (my Uncle Nicol) (this is the correct spelling of his name):


3rd Officer Cecil Dundas:


Marine Malcolm Robertson (my mum's cousin):


Seaman David Sinclair (and his sister Jean). This photo was taken during World War I when David served in the Royal Navy. He joined the Merchant Service after this and served in World War II as well:


Private William Smith (a cousin of my father):


The dedication of the Stroma War Memorial on July 19, 1975:
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ADP



Joined: 13 Jun 2008
Posts: 466
Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Transcription of the plaque as pictured on the www.caithness.org webpage
http://www.caithness.org/atoz/stromamain/stroma8july2001/stromawarmemorial.htm

    To the glory of God and in memory of the men of this island who gave their lives in the First Great War 1914-1918.

    Alex Campbell, Seaforths
    James Falconer, Seaforths
    William McAdie, Seaforths
    John Sinclair, Seaforths
    David Manson, R.N.R.
    William Sinclair, R.N.R.

    And the Second Great War 1939-1945

    Cecil Dundas, M.N.
    Donald Smith, M.N.
    Malcolm Robertson, R.M.
    David Sinclair, R.N.P.R.
    Nicol Smith, R.N.
    William Smith, Paratrooper

Grid reference and UKNIWM info inserted into first post.

ADP
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stuartn



Joined: 13 Dec 2016
Posts: 2378

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 6:37 am    Post subject: WMR (ex UKNIWM) number Reply with quote

The former Community Hall is now recorded as a memorial in its own right- WMR 76116
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