Poppy Cyril Gordon HOSKING (1890–1914) Poppy

Cyril Hosking
Royal Aero Club portrait of Cyril Hosking

Cyril Gordon Hosking was born in Karachi, India on 30 July 1890, the youngest child of Edward Hosking (date and place of birth unknown, but likely to be India) and Annette Taylor (born in Thaua, Bombay in c.1855).

His parents were married in Tanna, Bombay on 12 August 1875 and had ten children, of whom the following nine survived:

  • Emily May Hosking (born in India on 12 October 1876 and baptised at Kaludgi, Maharashtra on 17 December)
  • Evelyn Constance Hosking (born at 23 Woburn Square, London on 30 November 1877 and baptised at St George's Church, Bloomsbury on 4 January 1878)
  • (Florence) Mildred Hosking (born in India on 31 December 1880 and baptised at Girgaum, Maharashtra on 4 February 1881)
  • Ethelwyn Agnes Hosking (born in India on 15 June 1882 and baptised at St Mary’s, Belgaum, Maharashtra on 12 September)
  • (Helen) Kathleen Hosking (born in India on 17 July 1884 and baptised at Deolali, Maharashtra on 31 August)
  • Herbert Edward Hosking (born in Karachi, India on 19 November 1886)
  • Sylvia Maud Hosking (born in Ramsgate, Kent in 1887 and baptised at Westbere Church on 18 September)
  • Harold William Hosking (born in Bombay, India in c.1888)
  • Cyril Gordon Hosking (born in Karachi, India on 30 July 1890
    and baptised in Karachi on 13 September)

Cyril’s father Edward Hosking was in the Indian Civil Service, and in 1868 was appointed a Second Grade Judge and Sessions Judge at Khanelsh. Hence the family was probably abroad at the time of the 1881 and 1891 censuses.

Cyril’s father Edward Hosking, then Judicial Commissioner for Lower Burma, died at Yercaud, Salem in the Madras Presidency of India on 26 November 1898, with his home address given as 2 Avenue Villas, Ramsgate. His effects came to £863 14s. 2d., and his wife was his executor.

His widow, Mrs Annette Hosking, returned to England with her children, including eight-year-old Cyril, who was sent to Durham School.

At the time of the 1901 census Cyril (18) was living at 5 Dynevor Road, Bedford with his widowed mother and five of his siblings, plus a cook, housemaid, and kitchenmaid. (The three missing children were Herbert and Harold, who were boarding at Durham School on census night, and Emily, who was already married.)

Cyril’s older brother Herbert Edward Hosking was up at Christ Church from 1904 to 1907, which may help to explain why in about 1909 their mother, Mrs Annette Hosking, moved to Oxford. She lived at 1 Staverton Road in St Margaret’s parish with those of her children who were still at home.

By the time of the 1911 census Cyril (20) had already joined the army and was a Second Lieutenant in the 102nd Battery Royal Field Artillery, based at Woolwich Barracks. Meanwhile back in Oxford the only members of Cyril's family at home at 1 Staverton Road were the Misses Evelyn and Sylvia Hosking and his brother Harold William Hosking (22), who was a student: they were looked after by a cook and a housemaid. Evelyn’s status on the census form was altered from “Daughter” to “Head”, suggesting that Cyril’s mother, who spent census night with her widowed daughter Mrs Emily May Bromhead at 22 Trafalgar Square, Chelsea, was away on a long-term visit.

On 30 April 1913 Cyril obtained a Bristol Biplane certificate at the Bristol School, Brooklands.

Poppy In the First World War Cyril Gordon Hosking served as a Lieutenant in the 102nd Battery of the Royal Field Artillery and in the 4th Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps. He died at Gheluvelt in Flanders at the age of 24 on 26 October 1914, and was listed as killed in The Times of 2 November 1914. It was stated on the Great War Forum that he was killed when shot down in error by British troops near Poperinghe when flying BE 2 612, with Captain Theodore Crean (formerly Lancashire Fusiliers, West African Regiment and Northamptonshire Regiment), as observer.

He has no known grave, but is remembered on the Arras Flying Services Memorial, on the Cheltonian Roll of Honour, on the War Memorial of Durham School, and on the war memorial outside St Margaret’s Church in north Oxford.

Administration was granted in Oxford to his widowed mother, Annette Hosking, on 12 December 1914 . He left £29 3s. 4d.

St Margaret's Church War Memorial

After the War

Cyril’s widowed mother
  • Mrs Annette Hosking went to live at Bigforth near Lancaster with her daughter Mrs Sylvia Storey, probably straight after Cyril’s death, as the house has no occupant listed in Kelly’s Directory for 1915, and then appears to have been let to a William George Mathews. She died at the age of 63 in 1919 (death registered in the Lancaster District third quarter), and left £493 14s., with probate granted to her daughter Sylvia.
Cyril’s two brothers
  • Herbert Edward Hosking (born 1886) also died in the First World War: see below.
  • Harold William Hosking (born c.1888) is probably the man of that name who married Eileen Murphy at St Martin’s, London in the second quarter of 1927. They had the following children: Harold W. E. Hosking (registered Birmingham North second quarter of 1928); Cyril Gordon Clowes Hosking (registered Totnes fourth quarter of 1933); Margaret Hosking (registered Chippenham third quarter of 1941); and Thomas C. T. Hosking (registered Pancras, London second quarter of 1947). Harold died at the age of 64 and was buried at Richmond Cemetery on 15 June 1953.
Three of Cyril’s six sisters
  • Emily May Hosking (born 1876) married Major Edward Gonville Bromhead on 8 November 1897, and they had the following children: Dorothea Janetta Gonville Bromhead (b. 1898); Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Benjamin Denis Gonville Bromhead (b. 7 May 1900, d. 1981); Lieutenant-Colonel Edmund de Gonville Hosking Bromhead (b. 23 August 1903, d. 1976); and Annie Marie Gonville Bromhead (b. 1905).
  • Evelyn Constance Hosking (born 1877) married the Reverend Arthur Edmund Legh Walker (b. 2 Nov 1878, d. 15 July  1952) on 14 June 1911 in St Margaret’s Church. Their son was the Reverend Edward Charles Cornwall Walker (b. 24 May 1918, d. 11 Apr 1999). Evelyn died at the age of 51 in the first quarter of 1929 in the Birmingham Registration District.
  • Sylvia Maud Hosking (born 1887) married the widower Herbert Lushington Storey, Esq., J.P. in November 1915 in the Tonbridge Registration District. They first lived in Bigforth near Lancaster, and their daughter, Margaret Sylvia Storey, was born there in 1920; but the birth of their son, Thomas Herbert Storey, in 1922 was registered in the Malmesbury district.

See also

Poppy Herbert Edward Hosking (1886–1917) Poppy

Not listed on St Margaret’s war memorial

The elder of Cyril’s two older brothers, Herbert Edward Hosking, who was at Christ Church from 1904 to 1907, was already in service with the 62 Punjabis by 4 August 1914. He was attached to the 66 Punjabis, and first served as a Lieutenant, then as temporary Captain from September 1915, and as Captain from December 1916.

He was killed in action in Mesopotamia at the age of 31 on 3 February 1917 and is buried in the Amara War Cemetery (XXI.K.6).

It is unclear why he is not listed on the St Margaret’s memorial with his brother, especially as when his will was proved his permanent address was given as 1 Staverton Road. (It is unlikely that he owned a home elsewhere, as when probate was granted on 8 October 1919, to his brother-in-law, the Revd Arthur Edmund Legh Walker, the sum left was only £2 14s. 6d.) He is however listed on the war memorial in Christ Church Cathedral.

CWGC: Hosking, Herbert Edward

Biography on the website of the Christ Church Cathedral war memorial

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