Great niece’s delight as plaque is put in place

David Stephenson.
David Stephenson.

The project is pleased that one of the three Wallace brothers killed in the Great War is now remembered on the home he shared with his sister before being mobilised on the outbreak of the war on August 4, 1914.

Sadly, he was killed in action only six weeks later, on September 19.

David Stephenson Wallace was born in North Shields, the son of William and Mary Ann (nee Wilkinson), of Rosedale Terrace, but lived for a large part of his life with his brother-in-law and sister Eleanor (Doxford on marriage).

His mother and father both died within nine months in 1893.

He was educated at the Royal Jubilee School in North Shields. He was awarded the Haswell Medal in 1903 and would later become a master there after going to Armstrong College, later Newcastle University, via Tynemouth High School.

He played rugby for Percy Park, where his brother, the famous pre-war international Harry Wallace, had played in a match against the All Blacks on the Preston Avenue field.

Both men are listed on the Percy Park RFC war memorial.

An elder brother, John, a veteran of the Boer War, was to die on the Somme on July 3, 1916, and Harry was killed in action in the battle of Arras on May 8, 1917.

The detailed story and images of all three men can be found on our database at www.tynemouthworldwarone.org

Their great niece Roz Boylan has come to the north east on holiday and was delighted to be told that she could be present on Tuesday when the plaque for David Wallace was placed at his former home.

Mrs Boylan said: “What a wonderful project this is. Congratulations to all the people who selflessly give of their time to make it such a success.”

More than 120 blue plaques have now been placed on the former homes of Tynemouth men killed in the war, with 560 in total to be put up.

Now, as we expand into other parts of North Tyneside, a significant number of the casualties from those areas will also be remembered in the same way.

Anyone interested to help with this aspect of our work is welcome to contact us at info@tynemouthworldwarone.org

We need more volunteers to help in the task of contacting property owners to seek permission for plaques to be put up, organising events when plaques are placed, and liaising with relatives of the casualties.

The exhibition of Victor Noble Rainbird’s paintings and art has been very well attended since opening on July 10 at the Old Low Light Heritage Centre at Clifford’s Fort on the Fish Quay, North Shields.

It will feature a special showing of two of Rainbird’s paintings, done in the trenches at Armentieres and Vimy Ridge in France, from Saturday, August 15, until Monday, August 24. On that latter day, a talk will be given by Ian McArdle in the gallery exhibition space on the subject of shellshock, which it is believed by many was a possible factor in the later period of Rainbird’s life and tragic early death.

The exhibition continues until Sunday, September 6, with all proceeds going to the fund to establish a fitting memorial at the site of Rainbird’s final resting place in a pauper’s grave in Preston Cemetery, North Shields.

Tickets for the talk, due to start at 11am, cost £2 and are available in advance from the Old Low Light Heritage Centre, and from the project workroom at room B9 of the Linskill Community Centre in North Shields.

Anyone with information about anyone killed or died as a result of the war is asked to contact the project at the Trevor Terrace community centre.

Its workroom is open from 10am to 4pm each weekday for visitors and for anyone wanting to learn more about the project or how to get involved. Our address for correspondence is: c/o Essell, 29 Howard Street, North Shields, NE30 1AR.