James Fane Turner

James is listed on the War Memorial as one of those who gave his life during the First World War.

James was born on 25th March 1864 at Upton, Norfolk as the fourth child of Robert Turner and Letitia, nee Ward. He had six siblings, namely: Robert Joshua, William, Sarah, George Richard, Herbert Benjamin and John Richard.

James  appeared in the 1871 census living with his family at 4 Providence Yard, Black Street, Martham.

On 2nd July 1889 when he was 25, he married Sarah Ann Elizabeth Gallant, who was the daughter of Samuel Gallant & Judith, nee Watson. They married at St Mary the Virgin and he was a farm labourer both then and according to the 1891 census when they lived at Rectory Cottage, Cess.
James and Sarah had the following children:

  1. James Freddy Gallant who was born on 24th March 1887 in Martham and married Ellen R Ward in 1921.
  2. John Turner who was born on 8th November 1889 and married Susanna King in 1911.
  3. James Turner (Jnr.) who was born on 14th March 1891 in Martham and married Catherine Gunns in 1916.
  4. Laura Elizabeth Turner who was born in 1893.
  5. Alice Adelaide Turner who was born in October 1902 in Martham and married Horace J Grimble in 1921.

He was a 2nd Hand in the Royal Navy Reserve serving aboard the Hull drifter HMS Hilary II which was blown up on 25th March 1916 resulting in his death. The Royal Navy Reserve death record has his next of kin listed as Laura E,  formerly of Old Rectory Cottage, who is his sister.

HMS Hilary II was a drifter built in Hull and was hired by the Admiralty for the war effort. Built in 1902 she was registered in Great Yarmouth with number YH.674. Eight lives were lost when she hit a mine near Spit Buoy on 25th March 1916.  Spit Buoy is a beacon between Old Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight.  Samuel Charles Falgate was the skipper when she sank with all hands. Two other members of the crew were Henry Marston Smith an engineman (No.TS.2508)  from Great Yarmouth and Alfred Charles Howes, a deck hand (No DA.5124) who is commemorated on Bradwell Parish Council War Memorial.

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