Farnham, St Andrew

Six men are mentioned in contemporary reports as having been ringers at St Andrew, Farnham, prior to joining up. Reports in The Ringing World suggest there was often quite a bit of overlap between the Farnham band and that at Frensham, with F W Elliott also being described as a Frensham ringer in some reports.

  • Alfred Richard Elkins — Hampshire Aircraft Parks, Royal Flying Corps (Territorial Force). [Probably brother of below]
  • William George Elkins — Royal Flying Corps. [Probably brother of above]
  • Private Frederick Walter Elliott — King’s Royal Rifle Corps [Originally from Little Munden, Hertfordshire, he came to Farnham to work for the tower captain, Charles Edwards, around 1907; had moved to Cromer, Norfolk, by the 1911 census; after the war settled in Dover; before returning to Hertfordshire (Rickmansworth) in 1925.]
  • Lance Corporal Robert C Keeble — Suffolk Regiment; Signal Service, Royal Engineers. [a regular soldier who enlisted in the Suffolk Regiment in 1909 and susbequently transferred to the Royal Engineers – he had probably been a battalion signaller with the Suffolks. Became a regular ringer at Farnham while stationed at Aldershot.]
  • E J King
  • Edwin Prior — Hampshire Regiment.

Lieutenant John William Russell also rang at Farnham (and Frensham between 1907 and 1910 (having moved at the same time as F W Elliott, also coming to work in the plant nursery of tower captain, Charles Edwards), but is listed on the original roll as a Dorking ringer, so is not included in this list. He originally hailed from Ewhurst where he had learnt to ring.

As Farnham is not far from Aldershot, the home of the British Army, and the training areas had to be expanded considerably to meet wartime needs, it is no great surprise to find several more men who are mentioned as ringing at Farnham during the war while stationed close by. So far the following have been identified: Serjeant George Gilbert (a regular soldier who rang in the first army/navy peal on 8 Janaury 1914 and was stationed at Aldershot on the outbreak of war and for some months afterwards) and Corporal F Barker (from Saltburn) both Royal Engineers; Private Jones and S Davis both King’s Own Lancaster Regiment; and Corporal A W Cole, Military Foot Police.

Information about today’s ringers and the bells can be found on the Guildford Diocesan Guild website.

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