Gabrielle Ginger - mystery name on memorial

Discussion in 'The Women of WW2' started by PaulC, Nov 24, 2013.

  1. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Hi folks, my local war memorial at Scarisbrick includes the name "Gabrielle Ginger" but I'm having a hard time identifying her or connecting her to the war. The CWGC have no record of a casualty with this name. The only match I can find in the death records is a Gabrielle May Ginger who died at Torbay Hospital, Torquay, on 19 March 1945, age 22. Her DC says she died from illness and that she worked as a shorthand typist - no reference at all to any wartime service. Birth index says she was born at Chorlton in Manchester, there's also a probate record on Ancestry but that's all I've got. Have tried a few lines of enquiry but so far nothing.

    I'm posting this out of hope rather that expectation, but any help or suggestions would be most welcome!

    Attached Files:

  2. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

  3. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    During the war the RAF had a number of training establishments in the Torbay area requisitioned for the duration.

    Also as in the Great War there was a large military hospital established in Torquay.

    It could be that Grabrielle was employed in the area as a clerical support worker...may also have been a civil servant in this capacity.She was at the age where she would have been subject to conscription or undertaking work which exempted her from conscription.
  4. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Her probate record is here - but I note the Administration district is Llandudno, leaving her estate to her father and mother.

    Her birth cert is

    Name: Gabrielle M Ginger Mother's Maiden Surname: Rippingham Date of Registration: Oct-Nov-Dec 1922 Registration District: Chorlton Inferred County: Lancashire Volume Number: 8c Page Number: 961

    I know this does not answer your question directly, but does start to provide a trail of sorts.

    Edited to add.
    On reading her probate record more closely it says she died at "19th March 1945 at The Torbay Hospital, Torquay" so perhaps she had an illness or accident. Following on from Harry's post I note the 316th US Hospital was based there, so perhaps she was a nurse.
    Checking the local newspaper archives for the time and also perhaps Nursing associations would help find that link to her.
  5. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery

    Hello Paul
    just for ref I have taken photos of many war memorials and have also found names on them that do not match with CWGC it is quite common.
    It is possible that names get included who died (not only those killed as a result of war) during the war period.

  7. ritsonvaljos

    ritsonvaljos Senior Member

    As you rightly say, Clive, there are many war memorials which list some people who are not commemorated by the CWGC. For example, civilians accidentally killed working at an ordnance factory. I know of several instances of this. The CWGC will not commemorate these individuals but they may well be remembered on a local war memorial or Book of Remembrance.

    Ideally, Paul, it might be worthwhile if you could establish where Gabrielle Ginger was employed at and the circumstances that led to her death. I compiled a 'Roll of Honour' for one community and included two civilians who were accidentally killed while working at an Ordnance Factory (one of them is also listed on the war memorial for his local parish church). These two will never be commemorated by the CWGC but I see no reason why they should not be remembered by their home community.

    Good luck with your research, Paul.
  8. JRCowie

    JRCowie Member

    Have you tried reversing the the name i.e. to Gabriel?

    Quite a few under this name - and "Ginger" could be a nickname commonly used by aircrew?

    Just a thought

  9. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Thanks everyone for the comments, you've given me a few things to chew over.

    I've already searched my local papers for Gabrielle May Ginger, but there are no reports of her death that I can see. Enquiries at Torquay Library have also failed to turn up any information. It is of course possible that the name on the memorial refers to someone else, though there are no obvious candidates.

    I'll keep at it though!
  10. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member


    Her birth cert shows she was born in Lancashire, so perhaps that is one lead to follow. Another was that the admin for her probate was Llandudno, and her parents were her benefactors. Two thoughts come out of that a) trace where her parents lived and perhaps that's where she was buried, and possibly noted in the local press (obituaries), and b) perhaps others who read this have some idea why Llandudno. I was tracing another person who died on active service in 1940/41, postal address was Edinburgh, yet his probate showed the admin district for his probate as Llandudno

  11. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    I believe the Probate Office moved to Llandudno during the War to be away from the bombing.
    There are countless WW2 era Probate records that are recorded at Llandudno an that's the only logical explanation I can find.
    I don't think that suddenly all those dying during wartime were of Welsh extraction!
    Many soldiers Probate records also include the reference (with Will) and that supports the notion that she may have been serving in some context with the Armed Forces.

    EDIT: Mothers maiden name was Rippingham, and that led to an elder sister Norah Mary Ginger, who married in Newton Abbot (where Gabrielle's death was recorded) to Arnold W Horsfield in 2nd Qtr 1946. Norah died in Torbay in 1999, just short of 80 years old.

    That ties both sisters to the Newton Abbot area. Norah Hrsfield is also shown on several UK incoming passenger lists, travelling back from South Africa. Those lists show Arnold, Norah and 2 children with their address as Lynwood, Lincombe Drive, Torquay, which is the same as that recorded for Gabrielle in the Probate record. The passenger list shows that Arnold was with the Northern Rhodesia Police force in the 1950's.

    Perhaps Gabrielle and Norah were employed in some capacity with the Military Police during the War, with Norah meeting and subsequently marrying Arnold in the same line of business?

    It might give another avenue to explore?
  12. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member


    Thanks for that info - it was something I may have looked into but you have answered that question. It did seem odd that probates were being recorded at Llandudno and yet they seemed to have no welsh connection :)

  13. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Have been doing a bit more digging on Ancestry, and it confirms the details above:

    Gabrielle May Ginger
    Born 1922 Chorlton, Lancs

    Walter Ginger - 1887 - 1973 (Torbay)
    married - 1917 (Stockport)
    Annie Rippingham - 1891 - 1948 (Newton Abbot)

    Sister: Norah - 1919 - 1999 (Torbay)
    Married - 1946 (Newton Abbot)
    Arnold Horsfield
  14. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Registration Districts can be confusing to the researcher.The above records would be from the same area,ie Torquay within the Newton Abbot Registration District. Then Torquay registrations were recorded in the newly created Registration District of Torbay from1 April 1968.

    The Newton Abbot Registration District covered Torquay and surrounding Parishes from 1837 until 1 April 1968 when the new Registration District of Torbay was created from elements of the Totnes and Newton Abbot Registration Districts.
  15. Angela Walters

    Angela Walters New Member

    Am unable to work out how to leave some information on The Women of WW2 Gabrielle Ginger - mystery name on memorial started by PaulC.
    If anyone can help please let me know.
    Thank you
  16. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Hello Angela and welcome to the forum.

    I've moved your post over to the thread, hope that helps.
  17. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Just to follow up on this from a few years ago... Despite having no clear ideas about military service I decided to take a punt on the RAF and received a copy of her service record (just two sheets with some bits redacted). LACW Gabrielle May Ginger 2086347, enlisted at Southport 16/4/42, discharged 23/11/44 para. 652 (4b), physically unfit for Air Force service alth. fit for employment in civil life. Last unit before discharge was 39 MU (RAF Colerne?), presumably moved to Torquay later. No indication that her death was service related.
    CL1 likes this.
  18. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Seems like Angela had something to add to the discussion?
  19. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Attached some excerpts from her file, I gather that she was promoted to ACW1 on 1/12/42 and LACW on 1/2/43, also that she was with the following units:

    No. 921 (West Lancashire) Balloon Squadron AAF at Lime Tree Farm, Fazakerley
    No. 10 Group RAF at RAF Box, near Bath
    No. 39 MU at RAF Colerne in Wiltshire
    No. 51 MU at RAF Lichfield in Staffordshire

    Is anyone able to glean anything else from this?

    Attached Files:

    CL1 likes this.
  20. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    Here is the 1939 census still doesn't answer your question Paul sorry but just adding for reference.
    Name: Gabrielle M Ginger
    Gender: Female
    Marital status: Single
    Birth Date: 17 Oct 1922
    Residence Year: 1939
    Address: 30 Chretien Rd.
    Residence Place: Manchester, Lancashire, England
    Occupation: Shorthand Typist
    Schedule Number: 323
    Sub Schedule Number: 4
    Enumeration District: NJEE
    Registration district: 464-1
    Inferred Father: Walter Ginger
    Inferred Mother: Anne Ginger
    Household Members:

    Walter Ginger
    Anne Ginger
    This record is officially closed.
    Gabrielle M Ginger
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