Second Lieutenant Cyril George Notton, the King’s Own Norfolk Yeomanry, attached to 12th Battalion,
Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1917, Second Lieutenant Cyril George Notton, the King’s Own Norfolk Yeomanry, attached to 12th Battalion, the Norfolk Regiment, was killed in action near Jerusalem.
His parents’ only son, he was educated at King’s School in Rochester and was studying to be a dental surgeon. He was considered not to be of “sufficient physique” when he volunteered to fight, so embarked on a course of physical training to bring his chest measurement up to the required size. He joined the Inns of Court Officers’ Training Corps, and with the aid of Sir Samuel Hoar gained a commission with the Norfolk Yeomanry, and went on to attend the Military Staff College at Camberley as well as Hythe School of Musketry. He also became a First Class Bombing Instructor.
In November of 1916, Second Lieutenant Notton went to the Suez Canal defences in Egypt; An obituary (writer unknown) refers to him going through the campaign across the desert, suffering “unknown privations and torture from black flies and lack of water”. He later saw action during the Second and Third Battles of Gaza. The obituary continues: “On the eve of the taking of the city [of Jerusalem], he was killed. A splendid type of the Public School boy…idolised at home and a favourite with all whom he came in contact. Lieutenant Notton was one of those boys the Nation can ill afford to lose”. He is buried in the Jerusalem War Cemetery, located nearly three miles north of the walled city, at the north end of the Mount of Olives.
Cyril, from Gravesend, was 20 years old.