Five Whitby brothers serving in war

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Mrs W Davidson, of Salt Pan Well Steps in Whitby, is the proud mother of five sons who are serving with His Majesty’s forces.

One of them is on board the armoured cruider Euryalus, which was built in 1904, is at 12,000 tons displacment, steams at 21 knots and carries two 9.2 inch guns and 12 six-inch guns.

In a letter to his mother, he said: “I am in the best of health and spirits. We have come in to get slight repairs to the condenser or something.

“We go away again tomorrow, we have been coming in about every seven days for coal. One ship is always relieving another.

“We have been knocking about Heligoland and the Dutch coast. We were one of the ships that escorted our troops to France.

“We have also taken several cargoes of soldiers to Ostend but as you know, we don’t get to know much of what is going on. Our Grand Fleet is waiting quietly all the time.

“You will no doubt have seen our Admiral’s photos in the paper.

“They were our squadron that sank those German battleships off Heligoland.

“Our Admiral, Admiral Christian, is a fine fellow.

“We are getting four hours’ leave tonight. We have been having a rough time of it, with four hours at the guns, and relieved for two hours, but everybody is merry and bright.”

* Mr John McLean, an old resident of Whitby, has six sons serving their country, all of whom were born at Tate Hill.

Their names are John, 4th Durham Territorials; James Wilson, served five years on HMS Hawke (called up as reserve); William George, 3rd Durham Light Infantry; Thomas, 3rd Durham Light Infantry; Leonard, 18th Hussars; Alfred, King’s Own Scottish Borderers.