KINGSLEY UNION FLAG

In memory of Frederick Arthur Kingsley, Yeoman of Signals, HMS Kelly 1940



  In May 1940 HMS KELLY was torpedoed in the North Sea. Amongst those killed was Acting Yeoman of Signals, Frederick Arthur Kingsley. The ship was towed to the Tyne and docked for repair at Hebburn. The next of kin were informed and the casualties were buried in Hebburn Cemetary.   Yeoman Kingsley's father was Jetty Superintendent for Tunnel Cement at their Thames Wharfs. He worked under Mr W.E. Lunnon, Tunnel Cement's overall Traffic Manager. The latter granted him leave to go to Hebburn, and helped arrange his travel.   While at Hebburn, Mr Kingsley senior received from Lord Mountbatten, the Captain of HMS Kelly, a Union Flag which may have been worn by the ship, or perhaps had been on Yeoman Kingsley's coffin at this funeral.   Mr Kingsley senior gave the Union Flag to Mr Lunnon on the occasion of the Coronation in 1943. Mr and Mrs Lunnon, who moved to Devonshire after he retired, used to fly the flag at their house on "State" occasions.   Mr Lunnon gave the flag to Mr C.L.H Reckitt, who was Chairman of the Parish Council, on the occasion of the Silver Jubilee in 1978. Mr Reckitt offered it to HRH The Prince of Wales when he read of HRH's Presidency of The Kelly Reunion Association in 1983.   His Royal Highness attended an HMS Kelly Re-union Association Dinner aboard HMS President on the 25th of May 1984, at which he presented the flag to Captain W.W.F. Chatterton-Dickson, Commanding Officer of HMS Mercury, for safe keeping on behalf o the HMS Kelly Association.   The flag was then passed to the HMS Mercury Museum/Library and subsequently transferred with all the other exhibits to HMS Collingwood when the Royal Navy Signals School at HMS Mercury was decommissioned in 1993.



  The torpedo attack, by a German E-boat, killed a total of 27 ratings, 13 of which were 'Communicators'. Although this Union Flag is in memory of Yeoman of Signals Frederick Arthur Kingsley, the following 'Communicators' are also remembered:


ALLENAMOSBOXERCAMPSEDWARDSFOWLERPALMERPICKERINGPRESCOTTRICHARDSONWILKINSON WILLIAMSON Thomas PercivalAlexandraBill Thomas AmesPercyHarold B.GordonAlbert WilliamHerbert CharlesCyril HenryLeslie FrankEric TarrelBernard Eric Alex TelegraphistLeading SignalmanLeading SignalmanPetty Officer TelegraphistLeading TelegraphistOrdinary Telegraphist Leading TelegraphistTelegraphistTelegraphistLeading TelegraphistPetty Officer TelegraphistSignalman


They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old,

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn,

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

WE SHALL REMEMBER THEM.



  Hebburn Cemetary contains 41 scattered burials of the First World War. Of the 52 Second World War burials, 33 form a war graves group in Section C. Among these graves is the collective grave of 20 sailors who were killed on 9 May 1940 when the destroyer H.M.S. "Kelly" was torpedoed whilst in action against German E-boats in the North Sea. Four of those men could not be identified. There is also a memorial to the officers and men who died when the "Kelly" was sunk during the Battle of Crete in 1941. The memorial was erected by surviving members of the crew and employees of the Hebburn shipyard where she was built.