Faversham Gunpowder Mill

At 14:20 on Sunday 2nd April 1916, 109 men and boys were killed by an explosion at the gun powder works at Uplees, near Faversham. 200 tons of TNT blew up when some empty sacks caught fire. So great was the explosion that windows across the Thames estuary in Southend were shattered and the tremor was felt in Norwich. The crater made by the explosion was 40 yards across and 20 feet deep.

A brave attempt was made to extinguish the fire before it got out of control, but factory manager George Evetts ordered everyone to leave the site when the situation became hopeless. However, the explosion occured as everyone was leaving the site.

Included in the 109 dead, was the whole of the Works Fire Brigade. Many firemen died in subsequent smaller explosions on the site. Many bodies were recovered from the surrounding marshes and dykes, but seven were recorded as missing, most probably atomised by the explosion. Many of the dead were buried in a mass grave at Faversham Cemetery on 6th April 1916.

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Faversham Gunpowder Mill Burial Plot

C Southam H Bushell T Lane A G Chidwick L F Coord
W J Godden F Wyles pte W Catlow W Chantler W T Morris
E J Dawkins S C Vincent P C Wade M A Wellard G Singer
L S Wright F Coe B A Lyons E C Davy pte E Court
H B Taylor T H Bleackley J R Jarman S S Clements S H Clubb
F C Taylor W E Chadwick C T Garland F J Beer F Wiles
E Legg W S Maley S W Holbourn W Appleton A Goodwin
C A Webb J E Bartlett E Baker H Terry A H Chandler
H Pilcher A D Driscoll J Crawford E J Farthing F T Jarrett
W Mills T W Randall W J Wellfare L M Lloyd E West
G Powell A J Perryman F W Gilbert W Turner pte J Harding
G Kittle C M Taylor M Butler G J Warren H Wood
A L Fedbarb C W Kerrison A W Goatham S Lloyd J Hoare
H Anderson H C Jarvis C J Stickels J Saddington W T Waller
W Beaney A J Philpott W H A Wood R Stock H T Dray
N G Richards Pte A Dowsett C F Robus W J Stickens J W Beale
W Scrogie H Skinner G Hall pte W E Jarvis H C Beach
J Sutton T Stacey W Faircloth R M M Palowkar A W Beesley
A E Cole E R Penning J Collins A L Freestone W C Selmes
G Cornwell T Chambers S H Cox. J W Morris H C Walker
T A Clarke R D P Reader E J Warren J Williams F Manser
A Phillips A Ashby J Spillett    

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