15th August 1916

Lieutenant Theodore Newman Hall died at Rouen on 15th August 1916 from wounds received on 23rd July whilst serving with the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry. He was an only child and was born on 12th November 1894 in Sligo, Ireland.

His father, Rev. William Aidan Newman Hall, known as Aidan, was a minister with the Congregational Church, who moved to Sligo in July 1892, having previously attended Mount Pleasant Church, Hastings and been a student at Cheshunt Hall, Hertfordshire. He married his wife, Alice, in the same year.

By 1901, the family was still in Ireland, where Rev. Newman Hall had been minister at York Street Congregational Church, Dublin for five years. However, they moved to New Zealand in December 1901, so that Rev. W. A. Newman Hall could take up the post of pastor of Courtnay Place, Wellington. He left the position in 1905, travelling to London via the United States and Canada.

Leaving the Congregational Church, he was ordained deacon in the Established Church at Glasgow in October 1905 and took up the post of curate at St John’s, Dumfries. After two years, he moved to become curate at High Wycombe and then, in 1909, he became curate at Solihull, with sole charge of the district church at Catherine-de-Barnes.

By 1911, the family was in Solihull, living in “Cortina”, Park Road, Solihull and Rev. Newman Hall was working as senior curate of Solihull parish. Shortly awards, he became vicar at St Philip’s Church, Dorridge, where he served until his death on 12th October 1915 following surgery for a brain tumour a few weeks earlier.

Theodore Newman Hall was educated at Seafield Preparatory School, Bexhill-on-Sea, before attending Eastbourne College, which opened in 1867 “for the education of the sons of noblemen and gentlefolk”. He was a boarder in Gonville House, becoming Prefect 1909-1912. He joined the Officers’ Training Corps (OTC), which had been founded in 1896, and became Sergeant as well as being in the Shooting VIII. After leaving school, he went up to Oriel College, Oxford, where he was a cadet in the OTC. taking a commission in January 1915 and going to France in January 1916.

He was wounded on 23rd July and died, aged 21, in hospital in Rouen on 15th August 1916. He is buried in St Sever Cemetery, Rouen and is commemorated at St Philip’s Church, Dorridge.

If you have any further information, please let us know.

Heritage & Local Studies Librarian

tel.: 0121 704 6977
email: heritage@solihull.gov.uk



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