Return To Fforestfach History/Memorial page

John Davies Hocknell (1913 - 1942)
Trooper Hocknell John Davies, C Squadron 11th Hussars (PAO)
1939-1945 War Medal, 1939-1945 Star, Africa Star

John Davies Hocknell was the son of Harry Hocknell and Margaret Jane Davies of London House, Fforestfach. He was born in London House on 1 June 1913.

He was educated at Gendros School and Swansea Grammar School and sat his matriculation examinations in 1928. He was indentured for 5 years to Evan Jenkins & Co, then the largest ironmongers in Swansea, and was appointed manager of the Builders’ Supplies Department in the mid-1930s. In 1938 he started work in London House alongside his father.

He enlisted in the Royal Armoured Corps in 1940 as a Trooper in the 11th Hussars (Prince Albert’s Own). After recruit and basic training at Bovington Camp he was posted to the Middle East on active service with C Squadron, 11th Hussars. He arrived in Egypt in April 1941 and his military training continued in the field. He was trained in MORSE and wireless at a training school near Cairo. He saw much action over the next 15 months, taking part in several operations in support of the Desert Campaign in the Persia-Iraq theatre of war. His duties concerned reconnaissance.

In May 1942 C Squadron was sent to Basra in Iraq to collect a shipment of armoured cars and other military supplies in preparation for the attack from El Alamein under General Montgomery. The convoy of new vehicles began the return journey in mid-June.

He was killed on 16 June 1942 in accident on the return journey when the armoured car in which he was travelling crashed and overturned. He was buried in a temporary grave the garden of the English Resident in Kermanshah, Iraq. He was later re-interred in a military cemetery in Tehran and, finally, in the North Gate military cemetery on the outskirts of Baghdad.

John Davies Hocknell was unmarried. He was survived by his parents and his two younger brothers, David and William Hocknell.

Stuart Hocknell OBE(mil)