Charles Saul - HMS Hood
By Norman Saul
This article was originally published in the April 2004 edition of Soul Search, the journal of The Sole Society
I wrote an article which appeared in the August issue of 'Soul Search' about Charles Saul who lost his life when HMS Hood was sunk by the Bismarck.
Jennifer Ball, a long serving member of the Society, and a regular contributor to 'Soul Search' got in touch with me after reading the article. Thanks to her considerable help and search skills we have arrived at the following.
Charles Saul was born on 26 October 1910 at Fullers Vale, Headley, Hampshire to Nelson Charles Saul and Rose Moorey. Nelson Charles Saul's occupation at the time was that of Postman. Three years later in 1913 a second son was born to the couple namely Herbert William Saul. Nelson Charles Saul in turn was the third child of seven born to Daniel Alfred Saul and Mary Ann Bramley on 4 June 1883 at Snodland, Kent.
The 1881 census shows the family at 2, Constitution Hill, Snodland, Kent. The 1901 census shows the family minus Nelson Charles Saul and his sister Ellen Louisa at Malling. Ellen Louisa married in 1898. Of Nelson Charles Saul there is no trace.
Charles Saul joined the Royal Navy, date unknown, and was married on 19 December 1936 at the Parish Church at Haslemere in Surrey. He married Violet Louise Carpenter both aged 26 years. His occupation was Stoker R.N. and she a Laundress. On the marriage certificate Nelson Charles Saul is still a Postman. Two of the four witnesses were Nelson Charles Saul and his younger son Herbert William Saul. I have not traced any children from this marriage. Tragedy struck some five years later with the loss of Charles Saul on HMS Hood.
Sadly the story does not end there. Herbert William Saul was married in 1938 to Joyce Penney and in 1942 a daughter Carole L Saul was born. Herbert William Saul was an Able Seaman in the Royal Navy and on 12 December 1943 he was serving on HMS Holcombe. The ship was on escort duty in the Western Mediterranean on UK/North African Convoy KMS 34 when it was sunk by the U 593. He too lost his life.
So in the space of just over two years the couple lost both of their sons.
The names of Charles Saul and Herbert William Saul both appear on Portsmouth Naval Memorial which is situated on Southsea Common overlooking the promenade.
As a result of the additional information which is now available on Charles Saul I contacted the Commonwealth War Graves Commission to see if they would add his parents name and the name of his wife to the memorial on their official site. I have just received confirmation from them that they have done so.
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