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Wednesday 21st April 2021  

Quorn WW1 Roll of Honour - Hilary Calvert Clarke

Died 31st August 1918, aged 22
Bailleul, France

Hilary Calvert Clarke was born in Loughborough in 1896. In 1911 he is recorded at Bishop Stortford College in Hertfordshire, whilst his family were living in Quorn at West Hayes on Chaveney Road, now numbers 65 and 67. Hilary was the youngest of three children of John and Constance Clarke. John ran a dye works, and the Clarkes were one of the middle class families who moved to Quorn, into the large new houses, which were built when the Great Central Railway came to the village, and provided an efficient link for commuting. The photograph below was taken in the early 1900s and shows Chaveney Road, with West Hayes, a very large pair of semi-detached houses, on the left. The Clarkes lived in number 67 (far left). ‘Then and now’ comparisons of this part of Chaveney Road can be seen at Artefact 1269.

The family were all involved in the life of the Church and Hilary’s father John was described by the vicar as an ‘ever ready helper of the Church’s work’. Hilary’s mother played the organ when the regular organists enlisted.

Hilary went to Loughborough Grammar School, before joining the Machine Gun Corps as a commissioned officer. He was killed in action on the Western Front, on 31st August 1918, aged just 22 years old, having reached the rank of Lieutenant. For his mother Constance this was the second life changing blow in less than two years, as Hillary’s father John had died in September 1916, after which she moved to The White House in Woodhouse Eaves, which is recorded as Hilary’s last address. Hilary’s name appears not only on the war memorial in Quorn, but also on the war memorial at Woodhouse Eaves and the roll of honour at Loughborough Grammar School. Hilary is buried at Meteren Military Cemetery in France.

Probate granted after his death records that he left £2,636, which is worth over £100,000 today.

Hilary was very well thought of in the village and at Church, where he was the assistant organist. The vicar, Reverend Henry Rumsey, writes in the October 1918 edition of the Parish Magazine:
“He was a man of exceptionally brilliant promise in many respects. At the shortest notice he would take his place at the organ to help us through a difficulty. He has surely gone where there is abundant scope for the exercise of gifts which we have developed here”.

1) Hilary Calvert Clarke.
2) Loughborough Grammar School Roll of Honour. Click 'Enlarge' (below the image) to increase legibility.
3) West Hayes (no 67 on the left) on Chaveney Road.

 Submitted on: 2020-01-13
 Submitted by: Sue Templeman with help from Elena Folkes
 Artefact ID: 2324

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