St Botolphs church, Eastwick Hall Ln, Eastwick, Herts CM20 2QY
Details on cross:
On Circle: DULCE ET DECORUM EST PRO PATRIA MORT
On Cross Beam: LIONEL HENRY SALVIN BOWLBY
LIEUT ROYAL SCOTS GREYS
KILLED IN ACTON JUNE 4 JUNE 1916
Above appears to be painted on the cross and is in poor condition
On front: G.R.U
On Rear: —LT. L. H. S. BOWLBY
Text type (e.g. hand-written, GRU tags, carved): GRU tags and paint.
Cross dimensions (millimetres please)
Shaft Height: 1486
Cross beam width:609
Width of wood:101
Thickness or depth:43
Circle plate (if celtic type)
Width of circle: 76
Mounting to wall: Cross freestanding on floor but there were two countersunk holes 421mm and 875mm from the foot of the cross which indicate the cross may previously have been wall mounted. There is a screw protruding at an angle from the wood just below the top hole.
Detailing: Chamfers on the shaft and cross beam.
Evidence of use in field (earth marking, cracking, staining, shrinkage): Nothing noted
Surface insertion depth (into ground if apparent):
Finish (varnish, paint, oiled, unfinished etc): Remains of white paint on the cross.
Condition (cracked, paint peeling, woodwork, damage etc): In very good condition-home to many ladybirds at the time of the sur-vey
Notes and observations:
At the time of the visit the cross was home to a colony of ladybirds!
From Regimental War Diary
Becourt 28 Nov 1915 Lt Bowlby returned from trench mortar course
Bonningues 29 May 1916 70 O-R [other ranks] under Lt Bowlby paraded at 8am and proceeded with Bde [Brigade] working party in Louviers to be attached to 3rd Canadian Division for digging.
Bonningues 4 June 1916 LT LHS Bowlby killed whilst in charge of a Regimental working party at Bridge 18 KEMMEL-YPRES road, where it crosses the canal. He was buried East of the CHATEAU, 1 mile SE of the bridge.
Lt Bowlby is now buried in the Bedford House Cemetery – Enclosure No 4 1.0.9
The Bowlby family owned nearby Gilston Park and Lt Bowlby’s brother (Geoffrey Vaux Salvin Bowlby ) also died during the war. There was a third brother (Hugh Salvin Bowlby) who survived.
There is a war memorial in Eastwick near the church but the brothers are not mentioned on this. Instead they are on the Gilston memorial.
Lt Bowlby is also commemorated with his brother on the family memorial in the Eastwick churchyard
Internet research has revealed that both Lionel and Geoffrey are commemorated in St Lawrence’s Church, Marston St Lawrence, Northants with a plaque and two battlefield crosses. It is not clear what connection Lionel had to this location and why he should have two crosses. (Note this site does not appear to be on your list.)
Survey and photographs courtesy of Janet & Mark Ratcliff
Date of survey: 21 April 2017