The following biography was written by Victoria Doran. Edward is not mentioned on the Grange Hill War Memorial and does not feature in the Hoylake and West Kirby News and Advertiser‘s 1922 list; neither can his name be found on any church memorial plaques in West Kirby. He is, however, remembered on a memorial window in West Kirby Methodist Church.
EDWARD HYLTON WYNNE HUGHES
Edward Hylton Wynne Hughes was called ‘Hylton’ (sometimes spelled ‘Hilton’) by his friends, so that is how these notes will refer to him. Although he is not recorded as a War Death by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, there seems no doubt that all who knew him thought that his death occurred as a result of his wartime service, as the following article from the Deeside Advertiser makes clear. Several of those recorded by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) would seem to have had no greater reason to be included than Hylton , as he is most unlikely to have died when he did without suffering from his war service.
Hylton was born early in 1893 in Liverpool. He was the only son of Edward Hughes (1854–1943) and Annie (1864-1939). He also had two sisters who survived infancy Annie Gladys Hughes (1889-1913) and Doris Gwendoline Hughes (1899-1968), another sister Eleanor having died in infancy. They were an upwardly mobile middle class Methodist family. Edward Hughes was born in Beaumaris, Anglesey and married Annie, a Liverpudlian, sometime around 1888, though the marriage has not been found. In 1891 the family was living at 38 Arkles Lane, Walton on the Hill and Edward was a timber salesman. His sister Anne was living with them, and they had a servant living in, as they do from now on.
In 1901 the family, by now including Hylton, are living at 45 Anfield Road, Anfield, and Edward has progressed to become a timber merchant and employer. His unmarried sister Anne is still living with them. Sometime before the 1911 census the family had moved to ‘Novar’, 26 Park Road, West Kirby, and at the 1911 census Hylton was working as an apprentice timber merchant (presumably for his father). From the 1911 edition of the Gore’s Directory covering Liverpool we know that Edward Hughes’ business was in Bootle at 56 Regent Road, Gladstone Dock. At that time there were many timber merchant’s yards near the docks in Bootle.
We know that Hylton was among the first to join up, as he is listed in the Deeside Advertiser of 6 November 1914 as already serving. He served as Private 1176 with the King’s Liverpool Regiment, arriving in France on 24 February 1915.
By 8 May 1915 he is mentioned in a letter from Gray Blackburn to his mother as ‘having got it in the leg’. This letter is one of a collection of letters from members of the Blackburn family that is in the possession of West Kirby Museum. Presumably after this he had some sick leave to recover. On 28 December 1915 he was promoted from Private to Lieutenant, whilst remaining in the King’s Liverpool Regiment.
From the report of his funeral above, we know he later transferred to the 293rd Army Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery.
At some point his batman had rescued him from ‘No Man’s Land’ and presumably it was this injury that caused him to be discharged from the army before the end of the War.
He returned to working for his father, but succumbed to pneumonia on 6 Mar 1919 at the age of 26. By this time the family had moved to the large house called Cremlyn on Village Road, West Kirby. He must have been doing well as a timber merchant as he left £4554 according to the probate record, which was a large sum for one of his age at the time. Possibly he had been made a partner in his father’s firm.
Although a Methodist, he was buried in St Bridget’s church yard in the same grave as his sister Annie Gladys who had died in 1913. This was the only place of burial in the area at that time.
The Hughes family grave in St Bridget’s churchyard
Whilst not included on Grange Hill War Memorial, or on the plaques in St Bridget’s, St Andrew’s or West Kirby Methodist churches, he has a memorial window at West Kirby Methodist Church which was dedicated by his parents.
Birth: January 1893 in Liverpool
Death: 9 Mar 1919 at Cremlyn, Village Road, West Kirby
Addresses: 45 Anfield Road, Liverpool (01); ‘Novar’ 26 Park Road, West Kirby (11); ‘Cremlyn, Village Road, West Kirby (death)
Occupation: Timber Merchant
Units: King’s Liverpool Regiment; 293rd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery
Number and Ranks: 1176 Private; Lieutenant
Medals: 15 Star, Victory and British War
Commemorated and Buried: St Bridget Church Yard (1266), West Kirby; West Kirby Methodist church
Sources: Census: 01, 11, Prob, DA, MC, WK Methodists, LG