West Wales War Memorial Project
West Wales War Memorial Project

Llangunnor (Babel Chapel) War Memorial

Babell Zion Newydd Chapel is situated on Babel Hill in the Pensarn area of Llangunnor, on the outskirts of the county town of Carmarthen. It was built in 1834 and restored in 1870. The chapel was rebuilt again in 1905 by the architect George Morgan of Carmarthen. The present chapel, dates from the later rebuild, was built in the Arts and Crafts style of the gable entry type. The Welsh Calvinistic Methodists beginnings can be traced to the Reverend Griffith Jones, of Llanddowror, whose sympathy for the poor led him to establish a system of circulating charity schools for the education of children through the medium of Welsh. The Chapel contains a faded war memorial in the form of a parchment scroll, which commemorates its members who served and fell during the Great War. The transcription of the memorial has been kindly supplied by Mr Geraint Bevan.

Roll of honour

 

Members of the above Chapel and residents of Pensarn who

Served in H.M. Forces during the great European War 1914-1919.

 

BERRY,  E.,           Davies Town, Pensarn.

DAVIES, D.,          Davies Town, Pensarn.

DAVIES, R.,           Victoria Place, Pensarn.

DAVIES, J.,            Victoria Place, Pensarn.

DAVIES. W.,         Victoria Place, Pensarn.

DAVIES, E.,           Spilman Street, Carmarthen.

DAVIES, T.,           Spilman Street, Carmarthen.

DAVIES, W.J.,      Cambrian Place, Carmarthen.

EVANS. W.,         Cawdor Cottages, Pensarn.

EVANS, H.,          Victoria Place, Pensarn.

*FALLON, A.,      Bolahaul Farm, Llangunnor.

ISSAC. S.,             Lammas Street, Carmarthen.

JENKINS. J.,         Victoria Place, Pensarn.

LEWIS. J.,             Victoria Place, Pensarn.

LEWIS. G.,           Victoria Place, Pensarn.

LEWIS. F.,            Victoria Place, Pensarn.

LEWIS. F.,            Victoria Place, Pensarn.

*MORGAN. W., Victoria Place, Pensarn.

RAY.       Davies Town, Pensarn.

+REES.  G.,          Avenue, Carmarthen.

THOMAS. S.,       Davies Town, Pensarn.

:TANSIL. W.,       Victoria Place, Pensarn.

§TANSIL, F.,        Victoria Place, Pensarn.

 

*  Died of Wounds    + Killed at Sea    : Died of Fever    § Missing

The Great War Fallen, 1914-1918

Arthur Fallon, Private, 13103, Welsh Regiment. Arthur was born at Worcester and was the brother of Frances Fallon. Records show that he resided at Abergwili prior to the War, and was well known at Llangunnor, through working for Colonel William Charles Aslett at Bolahaul Farm, Llangunnor, and enlisted at Carmarthen into the 8th Battalion, the Welsh Regiment, which was attached to 40 Brigade, 13th Division. During January, 1915 the Battalion were made the Pioneer Battalion to the Division, and on 15 June, 1915 sailed with the Division to Mudros. On 5 August, 1915 the Division landed at Anzac, Gallipoli, where they were to see some of the worst fighting on the Peninsula. During December, the Division were evacuated, arriving in Egypt in January, 1916. They were sent to Mesopotamia to attempt to relieve the besieged town of Kut, which is where Arthur sadly died of sickness on 29 June 1916. He is buried in Amara War Cemetery, Iraq.

William Llewelyn Morgan, Private, 29469, South Wales Borderers. William was the son of John and Rachel Morgan, of Penybank, Pensarn, Carmarthen. He enlisted at Carmarthen into the army, and was posted to France, where he joined the 11th Battalion, South Wales Borderers. The battalion had been in France since landing in December 1915 as part of 115 Brigade, 38th (Welsh) Division, and had fought at Mametz Wood from 7 July 1916. From August onwards the Division was at Boesinghe, situated on the Yser Canal, and here launched its attack on Pilckem Ridge on 31 July 1917. William was wounded in the head and neck at Langemarck, during an assault on White House, and was admitted to Hospital on 30 August 1917. He was brought to the 7th Canadian General Hospital at Étaples for further treatment, and seemed to be recovering, but had a relapse and died on 2 October 1917. He was 19 years old, and is buried in Étaples Military Cemetery, France.

Gwilym Hubert Rees, Signaller, Royal Navy. Gwilym was born in Carmarthen in October 1898, the son of Thomas and Elizabeth Rees, of 19, The Avenue, Carmarthen. He trained as a Wireless Operator at Swansea, before proceeding to Marconi House London, and passed out as a Signaller, joining the Royal Naval Transport Section. A report was published in the Welshman Newspaper of 7 December 1917, which stated that Gwilym had perished during an accident at sea on only his second voyage, and that he was 19 years old. He had in fact suffered a fall, causing concussion of the spine, of which he died on 17 November 1917, aboard the London registered steamship, SS Port Chalmers. He was buried at sea.  Gwilym is not commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, as he was not a casualty of war.

Frederick George Tansill, Private, 42156, East Yorkshire Regiment. Frederick was the son of George and Catherine Tansill, of 1, Towy Villa, Station Road, Carmarthen. He worked at the GWR Depot at Carmarthen prior to enlisting at Carmarthen into the army. He was posted to the 1/4th Battalion, East Yorkshire Regiment, which was attached to 150 Brigade, 50th (Northumbrian) Division. The Division had been in France since April 1915, and had fought at Ypres and on the Somme. During 1917 they fought at the Battle of Arras, then at Third Ypres. During March 1918 they were stationed near St. Quentin, and were hit here by the German Spring Offensive of 21 March 1918, taking part in a gallant rearguard action during the Actions at the Somme Crossings, and then at the Battle of Rosieres. After suffering terrible casualties, the Division moved north to Flanders to rest and rebuild, but in April the Germans launched an attack in Flanders, around the Lys, and the Division saw much fighting again. The battered Division was moved to a quiet sector on the Aisne to rebuild, but unfortunately the Division was hit hard by a surprise enemy attack, suffered heavy casualties. Frederick was killed on the Aisne on 8 September 1918. He was 19 years old, and is buried in St. Erme Communal Cemetery Extension, France. His elder brother William also fell.

William James Tansill, Sapper, 448488, Royal Engineers. William was the son of George and Catherine Tansill, of Towy Villa, Old Station Road, Carmarthen. He worked as an Engine Cleaner at the GWR Depot at Carmarthen prior to the war and enlisted at Carmarthen into the Welsh Field Company, Royal Engineers. The Company served at Gallipoli with the 53rd (Welsh) Division, before being evacuated to Egypt in January 1916, where it was renamed the 437th Field Company. It remained on the Suez Canal defences for a year, then in March 1917 took part in the advance into Palestine. William became ill and died of dysentery on 29 July 1917, aged just 22. He is buried in Alexandria (Hadra) War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt. His brother Frederick also fell.

Those Who Served and Returned

 

Details of the members of the Chapel who served and returned home after the war will be shown here, but it is much more difficult to research men who survived, so more work is needed. Below are details so far uncovered:

 

William Ernest Berry, Private, 320406, Welsh Regiment. William was the son of Thomas and Maria Berry, of 18, Davies Town, Pensarn, Carmarthen. He worked as a Drapers Assistant prior to the war and served with the Pembroke Yeomanry before transferred to the 24th Battalion, Welsh Regiment following its formation in March 1917.

 

David Davies, of Davies Town, Pensarn, worked with the GWR. He served as a Sapper with the Royal Engineers during the war.

 

Richard Davies was the son of Thomas and Margaret Davies, of 6, Victoria Place, Pensarn, Carmarthen and worked as a labourer for the GWR.

 

John Davies was the son of Thomas and Margaret Davies, of 6, Victoria Place, Pensarn, Carmarthen and worked as a wheel examiner for the GWR.

 

William Henry Davies was the son of Thomas and Margaret Davies, of 6, Victoria Place, Pensarn, Carmarthen.

 

DAVIES, E.,           Spilman Street, Carmarthen.

 

DAVIES, T.,           Spilman Street, Carmarthen.

 

William John Davies was the son of Gwilym and Annie Davies, of 14, Cambrian Place, Carmarthen.

 

EVANS. W.,         Cawdor Cottages, Pensarn.

 

Henry Newton Evans, Gunner, 112723, Tank Corps. Henry was the son of Thomas and Phoebe Jane Evans, of 9, Victoria Place, Pensarn. He worked as a grocers assistant prior to the war and resided at 10 Brook Street, Willliamstown. He died on 1 June 1962, aged 67.

 

James Stanley Isaac, Sapper, 448415, Royal Engineers. James was the son of Joseph and Ann Isaac, of 17, Lammas Street, Carmarthen. By 1915 had been the organist at Babell for eleven years and was presented with a Bible and a sum of money for his contribution. He served with the 1st Welsh Field Company, Royal Engineers. He died on 27 April 1946, aged 54.

 

John Jenkins, Gunner, 150474, Royal Garrison Artillery. John was the husband of Mary Jenkins, of 3, Victoria Place, Pensarn. He worked as a fitter for the GWR in the Carmarthen Depot prior to enlisting into the Royal Garrison Artillery and served with the 76th Siege Battery.

 

LEWIS. J.,             Victoria Place, Pensarn.

 

George Lewis was the son of Thomas Lewis, of 5, Victoria Place, Pensarn. He worked as a wheel examiner for the GWR.

 

Frederick John Lewis was the son of Thomas Lewis, of 5, Victoria Place, Pensarn. He worked as an errand boy at a butchers shop prior to the war.

 

LEWIS. F.,            Victoria Place, Pensarn.

 

RAY.       Davies Town, Pensarn.

 

THOMAS. S.,       Davies Town, Pensarn.

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Website News

4 November 2017. Some good news this week following the discovery, after much searching, of the grave of Private Thomas Davies, of Laugharne. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers page of the website for details.

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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