EVES Alfred Frederick
Regiment : H.M.S. Queen Mary Royal Marine Light Infantry
Service number : PO18194
Conflict : WW1
Date of death : 31st May 1916 aged 15
Place of death : Battle of Jutland, North Sea
Buried : Commemorated on Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Hampshire, England, Panel 22.
Relatives : Son of Albert Frederick and Georgina Sarah Eves, of Alcester Rd., Lickey End, Bromsgrove, Worcestershire
Memorial : Bromsgrove All Saints Church WW1 Memorial
Credits : Researched by Alfred Eves and Sandra Taylor.
Alfred Eves was born on the 31st August 1900 at Alverstoke, Hampshire, one of three children of Albert and Georgina Eves. His father Albert was a Colour Sergeant in the Royal Marines. At some point after the birth of Alfred’s younger brother Bertram in 1906, and Alfred being enrolled at St Thomas’s School, Dudley on 15th September 1909, the family moved first to 14 Tower Street, Dudley and later to New Street, Dudley. Alfred left the school on 19th April 1912 and the family moved again prior to 1914, this time to Bromsgrove, Worcestershire.
New Street, Dudley
Albert Frederick Eves, head, age 38, Colour Sergeant, Royal Marines Recruiting Sergeant, born Hammersmith, London
Georgina Sarah Eves, wife, age 37, married 13 years, 3 children, 2 still living, 1 died, born Litchfield, Hampshire
Alfred Frederick Eves, son, age 10, born Gosport, Hampshire
Bertram George Eves, son, age 4, born Gosport, Hampshire
Harriet Dean, servant, age 15
Thomas Henry Milner, boarder, age 34, widower, Police Officer
Alfred enlisted as a Private in the Royal Marine Light Infantry in Birmingham on 7th December 1914 at the age of 14 years 3 months and 7 days. At the time of his enlistment he was learning carpentry and was 4 feet 10¾ inches tall with brown hair, blue eyes and a fair complexion. He was appointed as a bugler in 1915 and joined HMS Queen Mary on 16th November 1915. He was killed in action aged 15 at the battle of Jutland on 31st May 1916 when the Queen Mary was sunk.
HMS Queen Mary was a Lion Class Battle Cruiser. Built in 1913 for speed and long range, she displaced 26500 tons with a main armament of 8 x 13.5 inch guns and 16 x 4 inch guns. On 31st May 1916 she was part of the 1st Battlecruiser Squadron under Vice Admiral Beatty who engaged the German battlecruiser group of Vice Admiral Franz Hipper. During this battle HMS Queen Mary was hit and blew up with a loss of 1,266 men. There were only 9 survivors. The loss of the Queen Mary was the greatest single British naval loss of the First World War.
The following report appears in the Bromsgrove, Droitwich & Redditch Weekly Messenger, Saturday 24th June 1916:
LOST IN THE NAVAL BATTLE
Bugler Alfred Frank Eves, Royal Marine Light Infantry, H.M.S. Queen Mary, late of Lickey End, Bromsgrove.
News has been received of the death in the naval battle off Jutland of Bugler Alfred Frank Eves, Royal Marine Light Infantry, who perished in H.M.S. Queen Mary when she was sunk on May 31st. Bugler Eves, who was nearly sixteen years of age, was the son of Sergeant-Major Eves, also of the Royal Marine Light Infantry, and now in H.M.S. Empress of India. Before the war Sergeant-Major Eves was employed at the Austin Motor Works as a watchman, and lived at Lickey End for about four years. At the outbreak of war he re-joined his regiment, and the lad also enlisted in the same force as his father. After continuing to reside at Lickey End for a while, Mrs Eves returned to her home at Gosport.
Alfred Eves has no known grave, the photograph available shows his name on Portsmouth Naval Memorial.