Living in Aynho

Published on November 7th, 2018 | by Content Admin


Today We Remember

Edward John SECCULL
Service no. 27240

Sergeant, 115th Company,
Machine Gun Corps (Infantry)

Edward was killed in action on 24 August 1917 during the Battle of Passchendaele.

Family Background

Edward was the son of Eli and Rhoda Ann Seccull of Aynho; he had three siblings. They lived in part of what is now 15 The Square and then moved to 3 Skittle Alley.

The Seccull family had been in the village since the 1690s when Arthur Secull inherited a tiny house which is now the smallest part of 35 Blacksmith Hill. Arthur was a stonemason and there followed the generations of Secculls in stone masonry. Every senior male family member followed this trade down to the time for the First World War. Part of the family then moved to Melton, Leamington Spa in the mid/late 19th century. Eli had two cousins, Joseph Henry and Ernest Cecil who were also casualties – the former killed in action on the first day of the Battle of Loos in 1915 and the latter died probably from illness, just at the end of October 1918 in India. Large numbers of British soldiers move to India to replace Indian soldiers fighting on Western Front.

We don’t know whether Edward was trained as a stone mason but it is likely that he followed in father, Eli’s, footsteps. The Seccull family was involved in all the big building projects in the village – from Manor Court (Aynhoe Park), Church Cottage (now Catton House), the Almshouses, and the new school. Not surprisingly the churchyard has a large number of Seccull graves and headstones. Eli and Rhoda Ann were the last Secculls, dying in 1933 and 1954 respectively and are buried in the churchyard.

Like so many Edward has no known grave but his name appears on Panel 154-159 and 163A of the Tyne Cot Memorial just to the east of Ypres.

Edward had previously served with The Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry. It is likely that he transferred to the Machine Gun Corps when it was formed in 1915.


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