On 26th February 1918, Acting Matron Katy Beaufoy lost her life when HMHS Glenart Castle, the hospital ship on which she was serving with Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service, was torpedoed by German submarine UC56 ten miles west of Lundy Island. The ship was making her way from South Wales down the Bristol Channel, bound for Brest, France, and was clearly displaying hospital ship markings, including lit Red Crosses and being painted white with green stripe on the sides. The torpedo hit the no. 3 hold at 03:47am, destroying most of the lifeboats in the process, and the ship sank within eight minutes. Only 32 people survived, with 162 losing their lives.
Second Lieutenant Claude Charles Langford, 6th Dragoon Guards (Carabiniers) died on 23rd February 1918 at Tidworth Camp. Born in 1897 in Birmingham, he was the eldest of the four sons of parents, Oliver Charles (a cardboard box manufacturer) and Emma Blanche Lillian (née Thompson) who had married in the Solihull Registration District in 1896.
Lieutenant Colin Sutherland Lynden-Bell, 99th Deccan Infantry, was accidentally killed on 21st February 1918 whist on active service in Nusayrayah, Mesopotamia. He was the second and only surviving son of parents Colonel Edward Horace Lynden Lynden-Bell (1858-1922) and Mary Haigh Lynden-Bell (née Guyon) who had married in December 1891 in Dover. Both parents came from families with a long tradition of military service. Colonel Lynden-Bell was a surgeon in the Royal Medical Corps, whilst his two brothers, Charles Perceval (1862-1934) and Arthur Lynden (1867-1943) were also career officers in the Army. His father, Major-General Thomas Lynden Lynden-Bell, served in the Army for 43 years. Mary’s father was Major-General Gardiner Frederick Guyon.
Able Seaman Arthur Leslie Ryland Hill, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, was killed in action on 19th February 1918 when his ship, the transport liner SS Philadelphian, was sunk by torpedoes from German submarine U-82 whilst 47 miles from the Lizard peninsula, Cornwall. The ship had left New York on 11th February and Able Seaman Hill was one of four crew members to lose his life, along with an entire cargo of horses destined for the Romsey Remount Depot, Hampshire.
Second Lieutenant Robert Dyott Willmot, 2nd Battalion, King’s Royal Rifle Corps, was killed in action on 17th February 1918, dying at St. Julien Dressing Station Cemetery at Langemark-Poelkapelle, West Flanders. He was the second of the two sons of parents, George Dyott Willmot and Nellie Pratchett Willmot (formerly Heatley) to be killed in the war. His elder brother, John Dyott Willmot, had been killed on 3rd July 1915.
23-year-old Lieutenant Percy Lilico was killed in a flying accident at the Royal Flying Corps airfield at Northolt on 16th February 1918, as a result of his aeroplane nose-diving off a steep, low turn. He was born in Wooler, Northumberland, on 30th April 1894 and was the younger of the two sons of parents, Charles Gordon Lilico (1855-1912) and Emily (née Atkinson) (1864-1955) who had married in Edinburgh on 13th January 1890.
Lance Corporal Thomas George Robinson died of wounds on 9th February 1918, serving with the 10th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment. Known as George, he was born in Copt Heath on 10th May 1895 and baptised at St Alphege Church, Solihull on 4th August 1895.