Return To Fforestfach History/Memorial page


John Henry Charles, born about 1894 in Morriston, Swansea.

Parents: Daniel  J. (Head), a Coal Miner Hewer, age 31 and Rachel Charles age 28. Sons: John H. age 7, Richard E. age 5 and Fredrick H age 2.  All spoke both Welsh and English except Fredrick, and lived at Tyrhelig Terrace, Llangyfelach, Glamorgan.   They were all born in Llangyfelach, Glamorgan.1

Daniel John, Hewer at Colliery, age 41 and Rachel Charles, Housekeeper, age 38, married 18 years, children born 8, children living 7. Daughter: Doris Isabel, at school, age 2. Sons: John Henry Charles, a Blacksmith Striker at Colliery, age 17, Richard Earnest, Screen at Colliery, age 15, Fredrick Harold, at school, age 12, William Edgar, at school,  age 9, David Clifford, at school,  age 7 and Daniel Milton, at school, age 4. The family lived at 7 Armine road, Fforestfach, Swansea, Glamorgan and spoke Welsh and English.2

Served with Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve, service number (Wales Z/1778), signaller, aboard H.M. Trawler “Artic Prince”.  Died 15th April 1917, when vessel came in contact with a mine.  Memorial panel reference 25. Plymouth Naval Memorial U.K.3 & 4

A public reception was held at Calfaria for two local heroes, in the persons of Private Daniel Charles and Signaller John Charles, R.N. (lather and son), when Mr. Thomas T. Thomas ably presided over a large attendance. Private Daniel Charles has landed home for a short leave. He joined a local unit and has seen strenuous times. His three sons are with the Navy, all three having joined shortly after the outbreak of war. Private Charles is an old Northern Union halfback.
 A public reception to Sapper John Rees, Royal Engineers, was held at St. Illtyd’s Church, Ystrad road, when the Rev. D. Charles (curate-in-charge) presided over a large gathering. A reservist, Sapper Rees was called up at the outbreak of war, and thus far has come out unscathed. Following a neat and appropriate address by the Chairman, an excellent programme was gone through. Stirring addresses were delivered by Messrs. Daniel Williams, Ben Jones (overseer) John Thomas (Glengarey). The musical items were rendered by Messrs. Harry Thomas, D. H. Evans, D. T. Ponsford and Oliver Williams, and recitations were given by Miss Rosie Davies and Master Herbert Mainwaring. Miss R. Evans, Cynore road, presented Sapper Rees with a Bible and wallet on behalf of the reception committee and local inhabitants, The recipient suitably responded. Mrs. Harry Thomas accompanied.”5

“Mrs. Daniel Charles, Armine road, Fforestfach, has received a communication to the effect that her eldest son, Signaller John Henry Charles, has made the supreme sacrifice.  He was engaged on minesweeper.  His father and two brothers are with the colours.”6

Medals: Victory & British.7

1 1901 Census Wales
2 1911 Census Wales
3 Commonwealth War Graves Commission
4 Forces War Records 07.03.2014
5 Herald of Wales 10.06.1916
6 Herald of Wales 28.04.1917
7 UK, Naval Medal and Award Rolls, 1793-1972