WW2 Civilian death criteria

Discussion in 'Non-Commemorated War Dead' started by temptage, Dec 5, 2017.

  1. temptage

    temptage I thought it would only take a few weeks......

    Do all civilian deaths that are in the CWGC database have to have been killed by 'enemy action' or can they have been killed accidentally in the defense of the Country?

    The reason I ask is I found a 1942 newspaper story of 2 young boys who wandered into a minefield defending a local village and one was killed outright and the other severely injured.
  2. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member


    Quickly copying the info from Ancestry

    “These volumes contain the Roll of Honour of those civilians, citizens of the Commonwealth and Empire, who were killed in the United Kingdom by enemy action during the 1939–1945 War, while engaged in household or in business activities, or at their posts as members of the Civil Defence Services. Their graves are scattered throughout the country.”

    While most of these records are for the United Kingdom, they do include civilian deaths from around the world, including many lost at sea.

    If I find more ...........................


    It also states:
    ......................civilians in the British Commonwealth and Empire who died during World War II and are commemorated on Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) memorials or buried in CWGC cemeteries.

    So I would guess the criteria was set by CWGC??
  3. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    All WW2 war related civilian deaths should be within the CWGC database which,if researched may reveal a wide scope of death causations.

    From this, I would think that the deaths of the two boys should be recorded within the CWGC database.
  4. CL1

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

    Drop Chris Harley a line he has managed to get a number listed on CWGC
    killed by accident will fit
    example from one of Chris successes

    "The two boys were killed when they handled a mortar bomb"
  5. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    In the CWGC database should also be the Grimsby civilians who inadvertently were victims of the aircraft dropped anti personnel weapons such as the butterfly bombs.
  6. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Basic answer - all civilians who died due to enemy action. Those civilians who died as the result of military accidents although we would have to look at each on a case by case basis.
  7. ChrisR

    ChrisR Senior Member

    I came across this record of a Mrs Hogg of 162 Manor Road, Mitcham, killed 12 April 1942. I guess you could say her death was as an indirect result of enemy action. Not on the CWGC that I could see.
  8. CL1

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

    Killed by a souvenir accidentally thrown on the fire with the coal.
    might be worth dropping Chris Harley a line

  9. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    I would say this would be a high possibility for CWGC commemoration. Would you be able to supply a copy of the document along with the details of where it was obtained from. We at IFCP would then be happy to submit this case in your name. Sorry about late reply, but the day job & family have been taking up all my time.

  10. Nick Cooper

    Nick Cooper Junior Member

    I found some very odd actual inclusions on the CWGC Register while researching my Hull book. What appeared to be the last civilian casualty - injured in November 1941, died November 1946 - turned out to have actually committed suicide.

    Also a couple of ARP personnel who died in training accidents, but the strangest was a Fire Guard who accidentally rode his bike into a dock while on his way home, was pulled out and survived for six months, before being admitted to hospital and dying from pneumonia-related toxaemia.
  11. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    My understanding is that any Civilian who was a 'war worker' (AFS or Firewatcher etc etc) is commemorated, no matter what the cause of death was.
  12. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    No Pete they are not. Death must be due to enemy action or military accident. I myself have found several AFS/ARP who died accidentally who should not have been recorded on the CWGC civilian ROH. It seems that the local authorities totally misunderstood the rules.

  13. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    Correct Womens Land Army personnel who despite the title were civilians and died in farm accidents were not commemorated.
  14. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    How common do you reckon this was? There weren't many civilian casualties reported in the largely rural area round my way, but I've still found three that seem completely unrelated to any enemy action or military incidents.
  15. CL1

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

  16. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Does the DC state the nature of the illness Clive?

  17. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member

    Hello Paul,

    if you have got the names I will have a look at them? I have found a very few who should not have made it into the civilian ROH as they died of non war connected injuries/illnesses. I did find an ARP warden who died of burns after he managed to upset a Tilley lamp on himself.
  18. PaulC

    PaulC Member


    Rhoda Ashcroft, NFS messenger, road accident responding to a heath fire
    Thomas Horrocks, NFS Fireman, burns following petrol fire at station
    Eva Seddon, BRCS Nurse, pulmonary tuberculosis

    Perhaps there was more to some of these than what was published due to censorship, but inquest reports for the first two suggest the deaths were purely accidental.
  19. chrisharley9

    chrisharley9 Senior Member


    The first 2 definitely should have not been awarded CWGC civilian ROH status, but I wonder why they were?

    All I know is that now if their cases were submitted they would not get through.

  20. CL1

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

    Hello Chris
    yes it does in many cases
    Either TB ,heart disease etc
    or died through war operations (various wording can be used but along the same lines) which is useful for getting a commemoration if not already commemorated and fits the commemoration criteria

    in the case above t he died of a stomach disorder

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