West Wales War Memorial Project
West Wales War Memorial Project

Burry Port (Bethany Chapel) War Memorial

Bethany Chapel at Burry Port was a Welsh Calvinistic Methodist Chapel, situated in New Street. Two members of the Chapel fell during the Second World War and were commemorated on a marble plaque inside the building. When the Chapel was closed down, the memorial was relocated and is now to be found in Bethel (Welsh Calvanistic Methodist) Chapel, Gwscwm Road, Pembrey. The photograph of the memorial has been kindly supplied by Mr Wynford A. Davies, and reads (in Welsh):

 

ER COF ANNWYL AM

AELODAU O'R EGLWYS HON

A GOLLASANT EU BYWYD

YN Y RHYFEL MAWR 1939-1945

RAYMOND BOWEN

147 COLBY ROAD

DAVID OWEN DAVIES

LONDON HOUSE ABERPORTH

YN ANCHOF NI CHANT FOD

Raymond Bowen, Able Seaman, D/JX 188772, Royal Navy. Raymond was born at Burry Port on 10 February 1918 and lived at 147, Colby Road. He served aboard HMS Thanet, which was an S-Class destroyer, which had been commissioned after WW1. At the outbreak of WW2 she was on the China Station, and served in the Pacific, carrying out minelaying around Hong Kong. On the morning of 26 January 1942, Thanet along with HMAS Vampire was ordered to go to Endau on the east coast of Malaya where it had been reported that Japanese forces were landing. What was not reported was that there was a large fleet of Japanese warships assisting the landing. Thanet and Vampire went in, but within minutes Thanet had been hit by torpedoes and gun fire and she sank. A number of men escaped and made their way overland to Singapore, but were apparently executed that day by the Japanese. It is not known if Raymond was with those men who escaped, but he is recorded as having died on 26 January 1942, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

David Owen Davies, Able Seaman, D/JX 214757, Royal Navy. David was the son of John Thomas Davies and Martha Davies, of London House, Aberporth. He served with the Royal Navy at HMS President III. Edward had been posted aboard the steam merchant ship Erna II as a DEMS Gunner. He was killed when Erna II was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-562 on 25 September 1941, while en-route from Swansea to Montreal. David was 21 years old, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon. He is also commemorated on the Aberporth War Memorial and at Yr Hen Gapel, Llanbrynmair, Powys. For some reason the CWGC incorrectly show him as Edward Owen Davies, but all other records show that he is definitely David Owen Davies.

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Website News

4 May 2017. Welcome news this morning that a new CWGC headstone has been erected in Laugharne for Domingo Mobile, a sailor who I found to be buried there a couple of years ago. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

8 March 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated Welsh sailor, Samuel Arthur Griffiths, of Tredegar, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

8 February 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated soldier, Llewelyn Owen Roberts, of Penmaenmawr, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

 

7 February 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated soldier, Isaac Owen, of Seven Sisters, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

20 December 2016. Some good news today that another uncommemorated soldier, Private Thomas Owen Davies, of Machynlleth, has been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC following my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

30 November 2016. At long last my latest book has been published: Welsh Yeomanry at War. Please see the Steve’s Books page of the website for details.

23 November 2016. Some good news today with the acceptance of another Welsh soldier, Percy Griffin Williams, of the Welsh Horse Yeomanry, for commemoration by the CWGC following my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for details.

 

15 November 2016. I would like to thank the people of Laugharne, especially the members of the Laugharne and District Historical Society, for their welcome during their recent History Event on Saturday when I visited to make a talk about how researching the Laugharne War Memorial inspired me to create this website and to begin my writing career. It was a very interesting day and was well attended by the locals.

26 Sep 2016. After a lot of hard work I have finally managed to identify a soldier from Gwaun-cae-Gurwen, Morgan Price James, who since the early 1920’s has been commemorated by the CWGC under the wrong name, James Morgan. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for details.

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