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Jasper Whitfield SNOWDON

Main CPGW Record

Surname: SNOWDON

Forename(s): Jasper Whitfield

Place of Birth: Bradford, Yorkshire

Service No: ---

Rank: Lieutenant

Regiment / Corps / Service: Worcestershire Regiment

Battalion / Unit: 9th (Service) Battalion

Division: 13th (Western) Division

Age: 20

Date of Death: 1917-02-25

Awards: ---

CWGC Grave / Memorial Reference: Panel 18 and 63.

CWGC Cemetery: ---

CWGC Memorial: BASRA MEMORIAL

Non-CWGC Burial: ---

Local War Memorial: EMBSAY-WITH-EASTBY, YORKSHIRE

Local War Memorial: ILKLEY, YORKSHIRE

Additional Information:

Jasper Whitfield Snowdon was the son of Edward and Ellen Snowdon, née Armitage. Edward was born at Ilkley, Yorkshire and Ellen at sea.

1901 Bradford, Yorkshire Census: 6, Park Drive - Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, aged 4 years, born Bradford, son of Edward and Ellen Snowdon.

1911 Fleetwood, Lancashire Census: Rossall School - Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, aged 14 years, born Heaton, Yorkshire. Student.

British Army WW1 Medal Rolls Index Cards: Lieut Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, Worcestershire Regiment. Theatre of War first served in: (1) [France]. Date of entry therein: 17 February 1915. Correspondence: Father - E. Snowdon Esq. The Garth, Embsay, Nr Skipton in Craven, Yorks.

A short biography of Jasper is included in: ‘Though lost to sight to memory ever dear - Embsay-with-Eastby First World War Roll of Honour’ by Jane Lunnon, David Turner, Chris Lunnon (2018).

See also: https://www.bradfordgrammar.com/former-pupils/bradford-grammar-school-in-ww1/

Data Source: Craven’s Part in the Great War - original CPGW book entry

View Entry in CPGW Book

Entry in West Yorkshire Pioneer Illustrated War Record:

SNOWDEN, Lieut. Jasper Whitfield, aged 21, Worcester Regiment, the Garth, Embsay, killed in Mesopotamia Feb. 25, 1917.

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Lieutenant Jasper Whitfield SNOWDON

Lieutenant Jasper Whitfield SNOWDON

Regiment / Corps / Service Badge: Worcestershire Regiment

Regiment / Corps / Service Badge: Worcestershire Regiment

Divisional Sign / Service Insignia: 13th (Western) Division

Divisional Sign / Service Insignia: 13th (Western) Division

Data from Soldiers Died in the Great War 1914 - 1919 Records

Soldiers Died Data for Soldier Records

Surname: SNOWDEN

Forename(s): Jasper Whitfield

Born:

Residence:

Enlisted:

Number:

Rank: Lt

Regiment: Worcestershire Regiment

Battalion: Battalion not shown

Decorations:

Died Date: 25/02/17

Died How: Killed in action

Theatre of War:

Notes:

Data from Commonwealth War Graves Commission Records

CWGC Data for Soldier Records

Surname: SNOWDON

Forename(s): Jasper Whitfield

Country of Service: United Kingdom

Service Number:

Rank: Lieutenant

Regiment: Worcestershire Regiment

Unit: 9th Bn.

Age: 20

Awards:

Died Date: 25/02/1917

Additional Information: Son of Ellen Snowdon, of The Garth, Embsay, Skipton, Yorks, and the late Edward Snowdon. Also served in France, and at Gallipoli. Twice previously wounded.

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England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1966

1918

SNOWDON Jasper Whitfield of The Garth Embsay Skipton-in-Craven Yorkshire died 25 February 1917 in Mesopotamia Administration London 13 February to Edward Snowdon fancy weaver. Effects £93 17s. 8d.

Bradford Grammar School in WW1

JASPER WHITFIELD SNOWDON

1896-1917 Aged 20

Lieutenant, 9th (Service) Battalion Worcestershire Regiment.

Jasper Snowdon joined up at the outbreak of war, served on four fronts and was twice wounded before his luck finally ran out. His grandfather John Snowdon, from Stockton in Co. Durham, was the Vicar of Ilkley for thirty years during the its transition from a rural backwater to a fashionable spa town. He was a great enthusiast for bell ringing and equipped the church with a peal of six bells. His three sons shared their father’s enthusiasm, and the eldest (also named Jasper Whitfield) wrote a standard account of change ringing.

In 1885, John Snowden’s third son Edward married Ellen Armitage, also from an Ilkley family. Edward was manager for a Bradford silk weaver and manufacturer. He would eventually own his own silk-weaving business and move to The Garth in Embsay. They had five children. Jasper, the youngest and their only son, was born in Heaton on 5th October 1896. He was named in memory of his uncle and his grandfather. He went to Bradford Grammar School in September 1906 when he was nine. In his first year he topped form First Lower and was runner up for the form prize, but thereafter he was in the middle of the form orders. His best subjects were Art, Geography, History, and Nature Study, while he was near the bottom for spelling, composition and grammar. This record may account for the decision to move him to Rossall School, Lancashire, in September 1910. His obituary in the Rossallian describes him as ‘shy, diffident and unassuming, and rather too ready to efface himself.’ He made his impact as a long-distance runner who often finished in the top four. The magazine reported an incident which showed ‘the stuff he was made of’ - despite losing his shoe at the start of the Junior Steeplechase he completed the course barefoot. He took a keen interest in the study of natural history, winning several prizes from the RSPB, and was an enthusiastic member of the OTC.

Jasper was at the OTC Summer Camp at Tidworth when war broke out at the start of August 1914, and although not yet eighteen he volunteered. He was gazetted Second Lieutenant (on probation) in the 6th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment on 21st October, and he proceeded to the Western Front to join the 3/Worcesters on 17th February 1915. A month later he was promoted to Lieutenant. After two months in the trenches near Ypres, Snowdon was wounded in the neck and head by a sniper. He convalesced in south London, then in September he was transferred to the 9/Worcesters at Gallipoli. Snowdon was hospitalized by dysentery, then rejoined his battalion in Egypt in January 1916, following the evacuation of the bridgeheads. The 9/Worcesters were next sent to Iraq as part of the force that attempted to relieve General Townshend’s Anglo-Indian force besieged by the Turks at Kut al-Amara. Snowdon was wounded again on 5th April and recuperated in India for nine months. Townshend surrendered with 13,000 men, a great blow to Britain’s reputation in the east.

When Snowdon returned in January 1917, the 9/Worcesters were engaged in General Maude’s systematic reduction of the Turkish entrenchments at Kut with a mainly Indian army. With this episode of siege warfare successfully concluded, in February the advance on Baghdad commenced. The Turks seemed to be fleeing, abandoning their equipment, until on 25th they made a stand at Azziyeh 60 miles north of Kut. Although they had good cover and their right rested on the River Tigris, the left was un-secured. The 9/Worcesters were ordered to outflank the position. Turkish fire was heavy but wild and caused few casualties, and they gave way in the face a determined bayonet charge. The Worcesters lost some twenty men including two officers, one of whom was Snowdon. The location of his grave was lost and his name is on the Basra Memorial. There is also a plaque to him in Ilkley parish church, and he is on the town memorial as well as at BGS.

Acknowledgements:

I used Ancestry.com to research Jasper Whitfield’s family history, and the Bradford Grammar School Annual Reports for 1906-7 to 1910-11 for his BGS years. Claire Moore, the Rossall archivist, kindly supplied me with invaluable information about his years there. The photo is taken from the BGS OBA Roll of Honour, with thanks to the School. For the Snowdon family in Ilkley I used accessed 11-1-2017. Some of Jasper’s military records are available on Ances-try.com, supplemented by forces-war-records.com. His Officer File in the National Archives is WO 339/23959.

An obituary to Snowdon was published in 1919 in Craven’s Part in the Great War, compiled and edited by John T. Clayton, 62. This also available at . There are online biographies at (David O’Mara, based on the Bradford Weekly Telegraph entry 16th March 1917) and (Edward Wild) accessed 11-1-2017. I used the 3/Worcester War Diary () which notes Snowdon’s first wounding on 8th May. The Worcester-shire Regiment website ( accessed 18-1-2017) gives detailed accounts of the operations at Kut, but was still in process of construction at the time I consulted it. I was able to benefit from a page of the battalion history posted on accessed 11-1-2017, post-ed 17-3-2016.

I hope that this is the most complete biography of Jasper Whitfield Snowdon to date. It was researched and compiled, with thanks to the authorities noted, by Nick Hooper in January 2017 ([email protected]).

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Bradford Grammar School War Memorial

Bradford Grammar School War Memorial

© Nicholas Hooper (WMR-28454)

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14 May 1915

ANOTHER EMBSAY MAN WOUNDED

News reached Embsay on Wednesday evening that Lieut. Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, of the 3rd Battalion Worcester Regiment, had been wounded in France, and was now in the 1st London General Hospital, St. Gabriel's College, Camberwell.

Lieut. Snowdon enlisted at the outbreak of War, and has been in and out of the trenches for the last three months, and in a letter home to his parents, he states that a sniper fired a round into the parapet, causing splinters to fly and wounding him in the temple and neck. He is progressing favourably and expects soon to be discharged from hospital.

Lieut. Snowden is the only son of Mr. Edward Snowdon, of The Garth, Embsay.

09 March 1917

SNOWDON – February 25th, 1917, in the battle of the Tigris, Lieut. Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, of the Worcestershire Regiment, the only son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Snowdon, The Garth, Embsay, aged 21 years.

09 March 1917

ANOTHER FINE OFFICER FALLS – LIEUT. J. W. SNOWDON, EMBSAY

Great grief was felt in Embsay on Friday evening, when it became known that information had been received of the death of Lieut. Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, the only son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Snowdon, of The Garth, Embsay, and grandson of the late Rev. John Snowdon, vicar of Ilkley. Born at Bradford in 1896, the deceased officer commenced his education at the Bradford Grammar School. In 1909 he went to Rossall School, where he soon became a credit to his ‘house’. He took a keen interest in sports, in photography, and in the study of natural history, and gained several prizes from the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. From the very first he was an enthusiastic and active member of the Officers’ Training Corps, and was in camp at Tidworth when war broke out. He left Rossall at the end of the summer term of 1914 and immediately volunteered for service and was given a commission in the Worcestershire Regiment. He was sent to France on February 17th, 1915, and was wounded at St. Eloi in May. In September he was sent to the Dardanelles and was there until a week or two before the evacuation, when owing to an attack of dysentery he was sent to hospital. He soon rejoined his battalion in Egypt, and later was drafted to Mesopotamia, where he was again wounded on Apri1 5th, 1916, in the operations for the relief of General Townsend. He was afterwards sent to India and was there for some months on sick leave. He returned to the Tigris Line at the end of January and fell in action on February 25th, 1917.

The flag on St. Mary’s Parish Church was flown at half-mast on Sunday last.

Great sympathy is felt for Mr. and Mrs. Snowdon and the Misses Snowdon in the great loss which they have sustained in the death of a brave soldier.

04 July 1919

PEACE SUPPLEMENT TO THE 'CRAVEN HERALD' – CRAVEN'S FALLEN OFFICERS

LIEUTENANT J. W. SNOWDEN

Worcestershire Regiment, only son of Mr. and Mrs. E. Snowden. The Garth, Embsay, killed on the Tigris line about February 27th, 1915.

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09 March 1917

EMBSAY – LIEUT. SNOWDON KILLED

News was received at Embsay on Friday evening that Lieut. Jasper Whitfield Snowdon, son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Snowdon, of Garth, Embsay, and grandson of the late Rev. John Snowdon, vicar of Ilkley, had been killed in action. He was born at Bradford in 1896, and started his education at the Bradford Grammar School in 1909 and went to Rossall School, where he soon became a credit to his house. He took a keen interest in photography and the study of natural history, and gained several prizes from the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. From the very first he was an active member of the O.T.C., and was in camp at Tidworth when war broke out. He left Rossall at the end of the summer term of 1914, and immediately volunteered for service, and was given a commission in the Worcestershire Regiment.

He was sent to France on Feb. 17th, 1915, and was wounded at St. Eloi in May. In September he was sent out to the Dardanelles and was there until a week or two before the evacuation, when he was sent to hospital suffering from dysentery. He soon rejoined his battalion in Egypt, and later was drafted to Mesopotamia, where he was again wounded on Apri1 5th 1916, in the relief of General Townshend. He was sent to India, and was there for nine months on sick leave. He returned to the Tigris line at the end of January, and fell in action on February 25th, 1917.

The flag on St. Mary’s Parish Church was flown at half-mast on Sunday, and Rev. C.V. Brown during his sermon on Sunday morning made touching reference to the memory of the two Embsay soldiers (Lieut. Snowdon and Pte. Bellas) who had fallen during the past week. Great sympathy is felt for Mr. and Mrs. Snowdon and the Misses Snowdon in their great sorrow and loss which they have sustained in the death of a brave soldier.

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