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Dr Raymond Jones  

Killed on July, 10th 1916 at the Battle of the Somme

Dr Raymond Jones with his brother, Major Edgar Jones (seated)    

Scroll of Condolence


In Flanders Field

by Dr McCrae

  To Dr McCrae, the Canadian doctor, the poppy that grew around him in the trenches was a symbol of the sleep of the dead.

  In Flanders Fields, the poppies grow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our places; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amongst the guns below

We are the Dead. Short time ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw the sunset glow,

Loved and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders Fields

Take up our quarrel with the foe;

To you from falling hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders Fields.’


Westminster Gazette,

After Gods

By Patrick MacGill


Was only yesterday

Lusty comrades marched away,

Now they’re covered up with clay.


Seven glasses used to be

Called for six good mates and me

Now we call for three,

Little crosses neat and white,

Looking lovely every night

Tell of the comrades killed in fight

Hearty fellows they have been

And now no more will they be seen

Drinking wine.


Lithe and supple lads were they

Marching merrily away

Was it only yesterday?

  - - -

Carnoy Military Cemetery where Lt. Raymond Jones, RAMC is buried.

The cemetery is situated 1½ SE of Mametz Railway Station,


Fragments of letters from Raymond to his brother, Edgar, his nephew, Gareth, and his nieces, Gwyneth and Eirian.

  January 30th 1916

  Dear Edgar,

  Sorry to hear that you were not well. It must be what you suggested, anyhow, you had better see a ‘med.’, so as to feel easier in your mind.  It is not an uncommon thing.  I should certainly see Jack Reeve.  I suppose would be your army ‘med.’ Have been running Divisional Baths for now for 11 days.  We had to get different points that far behind the trenches.  I am really under Llewellyn Williams who is supposed to be responsible.  I go round every day on horseback and make a round of 10-12 miles.  All the course is under shell fire so you see it is quite exciting.  Have been very lucky so far and had no shells near me, but see them in adjacent fields etc so one bath had been shelled out before my arrival and two since.  Two are abandoned and I am restarting two new ones in new places.

  I do all the work.  Ll. is supposed to keep me supplied with fuel and also give all bathed a complete clean change.  Each bath can do 200-250 each day. altogether1000 a day.  Most washing, change and arranging for carting the dirty cloths off takes some doing. The supply waggon can only go round after dark (because of shelling) with ration and cloths etc.  I am billeted at a place with another chap Parry – fine chap with a section, but I am out of the Amb. for the present and simply under sanitary section.  W, surprises me greatly.  Does absolutely nothing.  Can’t get enough clean changes from him or transport and he left me isolated for the first 6 days.  I had to manage as well as I could.  Anyhow have bathed and changed all who came and find my own transport.

  Have done one brigade and most of another with clothes left by outgoing Division.  The staff colonel A.D.M.S. came round today and was very pleased.  I told him about the clothes grievances.  Wm was rather done down.  He is hopeless  (The general impression I find), anyhow, I had to put myself right as the staff colonel asked particularly about it.  They are very keen on bathing and change in the Div. and I like the work as going about is interesting and expecting more so than sticking is.  I am afraid our amb. is domed to “Itch” etc for sometime as our old man is not much relied on.  If I don’t see much prospect later I will take on other regimental work., but hear the places are swarming with rats which nearly intimidate me far more than the danger. 

  Letter incomplete  

March 29th 1916

My Dear Edgar,

  .The A.D.S.I have described, I think, an isolated farm short way behind and pretty exposed - shelled occasionally, because of the batteries near.  Fine cellar and ??(in which I sleep) and good accommodation for casualties.  The other man has had Military cross.  I was complimented on the baths and praised by the A.D.M.S. on Baths. Have had pretty interesting time here.  Been in trenches every day when off duty.  Trenches are dangerous as the Bosche trenches are very near and rifles are used a good deal.  Their range is within150-180 yards.  They are shot up into air and drop into opposing trenches and explode and make a jolly nasty wound and many deaths.  Sat on edge of a crater last week 20 yards from Bosche who were on the other edge and had to speak in a whisper.  This afternoon got into a sap and saw two periscopes of them moving at about 30-35 yards away at end of sap, also fired off a rifle grenade and then watched the effect of our rifle grenades, aimed at their trenches about 60 yards, but before they went one better and dropped three beauties on to us at 10 yards.  One went off , then a dud and then another  about 8 yards, then another 4 yards off but over the parapet.  I saw the last coming down and it seemed to come right on to me so I rushed for dug out but it was crammed full. ‘Pob pareh

  The man I have here with is M.O. to one of the battalions and is the ‘limit in daring’ etc.  Quite a byword!  After we left the sap – ½ hour afterwards, while we had tea in a dug out with the company, 3 men were killed at the place we had been at with the rifle and grenades.  Shan’t go again.  Too risky.  Had some views of the German trenches and well on to their lines the other days with a good glass.  Thought I could see some figures moving about.  I find the trenches fascinating and had great difficulty in refusing and invitation to go round.  Last Monday there was I was told of a strafe on our part of the trenches so I and a corporal went out.  We left the trenches and got on the open ground behind the front line on sloping ground towards our trenches.  We got to a ruined house and stayed there a bit and our guns started. Then we got nearer but found ourselves in full view and only 100 yards from the German trenches.  Then something happened.  The Germans started to fire from an angle over our heads on to our front lines.  We were by then fairly near.  Then the shells started to fall near our walls and ‘Jones’ felt a bit like going home.  We were told afterwards by our chaps that the Germans had spotted us and were shelling us.  One fell 34 yards away but a dud.  Then we started off in the open to another wall and another shell fell just behind this and covered our side with dust and fragments, just missing us.  I tried into jump in a ditch and slithered in and finally walked to a spot behind a sandbag wall and had a well-earned cigarette.  Then we ran back about 80 yards and simply got in to the trench.  Diolch byth.  (Thank heavens).  We had to scamper in the open 4 times and each time seemed miles but really it was extremely exhilarating though I was in an awful funk.     It was our fault as we could well have been back.  We didn’t count on the Bosche carrying on as they did.  Some of our officers had seen us an d given us up for lost as they could see bricks and timbers go up al around our devoted heads.  They thought a great joke, especially as we had ‘asked for it’.  I was glad afterwards of the experience especially as I found myself much cooler than I expected.  Anyhow don’t be worried.  I am satisfied now and I shall be more careful here.  The place I was in was at the parapets only but not where the intricate system of real trenches.  6 machine gun bullets passed over my head in one sap, first time I was in – a most terrifying noise.  Of course they skimmed over the parapets.

 Your Affectionate brother


  P.S. Don’t worry I certainly wont run any more risks. Again.  

10th South Wales Borderers,

38th Division

June 7th 1916

Dear Edgar,

  I must apologise for not answering your letter but I have written quite a lot to Gwyneth etc.  I am not sure whether I thanked Gwen for the cake, if not thank her again warmly.  We came back to the trenches Monday night after 10 days rest in same place as before, the company being in a farmhouse.  I had quite a decent rest .  Football matches between battalions etc and our band playing a lot – quite a good band.  Last Sunday morning I went to hear Grand Mass for the fallen soldier of both nations.  Quite impressive!

  Our C.O is a very decent chap and keen I have a very easy time when we are in a casualties with us are very low.  We are in the place I saw your lot last Christmas.  I believe my leave is coming in three weeks time, but I hear it is now 7 days - what a shame.  Then the ADMS is a pig.  I don’t think we would have it for long time only one of our medical men was up before the general about it.  He, himself is now on his second leave and staff are also following.  These political classes are not altogether satisfactory. These chaps want kudos at the expense of somebody else.  I am afraid now it will not be possible to come to Barry, as the time will be short.  Takes such a time to get to Llanrhaidr and I feel I must go home as long as possible.  You will understand.  I should awfully like to see you and the family but as it is it will be unfair.

  With warm love to all


  Letter to Gareth Jones (aged 10 years).



and about 20 men at different bathhouses.  There is not much glory about cleaning.

Thomas John Atkins Rhondda Jones is here, but it wants tremendous powers of organising and concentration, as he is very particular that his little singlets and socks should be in a nice condition and aired.  I don’t suppose I shall be at it very long.  The billet is very snug and I have a lounge chair before a good fire with coal etc and as an old campaigner you will realise that one’s duty (according to the Boy Scouts Manuel) is too look after one’s health and comfort.  I have got some fine shell caps, which I shall bring home also some pierces of a shell, which blew over my head in a field and dropped fairly near.  I clear forgot to duck my head.  They are very interesting to watch if you are out of the line of fire.  They generally aim at certain spots and make huge holes in the roads and fields. One man was killed and three wounded in one of our baths but not RAMC men.  Dai Jenkins, Barry was the sergeant in charge. He is now back with the field hospital and is getting on very well with his work.

 I am told you don’t get very nervy with shells until you feel the shock of one.  The shock of the biggest is enough to make a man unconscious even if no injury is caused.  There is a battery near my billet since a day or two ago so we may expect a lot of shells here as they always aim for the batteries.  I went up the trenches with a medical friend 2 weeks ago. I had to walk in the open on a narrow board for about 600 yards to get into the front line.  I was awfully afraid of tumbling over into pools and old trenches all around and it was pitch dark.  Bullets whizzing round but I was so funky of falling I had no time to think as much about these as I should otherwise have done.  You see I haven’t seen much excitement yet but no doubt shall have plenty when the big “strafe" commences.  I saw some fine shelling of 4-5 German aeroplanes by our guns the other day but sorry to say not one came down.  They must be very hard to hit.  Dada will be interested that Rev A Davies has been staying with us here and he is now in hospital but is coming back to stay with me tomorrow.  He is a fine chap and we are very friendly.  Bryn Lewis is also near here. There was at a very good concert wed. night at Div headquarters;  fine singing by one of our battalions.

I shall write to Eirian before long.  I am sending her a RAMC badge

Warmest love to dada, Mama, Dada, Auntie Winnie and Eirian and Baden Powell Yychan (boy).

Your affectionate uncle.


The shell fuses Uncle Raymond brought home for his nephew, Gareth

January 11th  ‘15

Dear Gwyneth and Eirian,

The baccy arrived safely.  Thanks awfully.  We have been away from our quarters a week and the letters were delayed etc.  I enjoyed my week up there very much.  We had two days in an Advanced Dressing Station, which I described in my last letter. There were RAMC regular officers in the mess who had been through all the war and their yarns about the different big ‘shows’ as they called them were really fascinating.  The RAMC officers seem to have a very exciting time in these cases.  Of course, now in the trench work it is pretty quiet.  Shells at times fall into their stations and messes and they have to vacate them.  We are likely to stay in this place for some time.  Hope we will be ‘up’ in time for the next big affair - almost certain to be.  We have a hospital here for very uninteresting cases ie skin cases.  This week I am in the office sitting down by a big fire and trying to look as busy as I can.  The work so far has been very light.  We have a comfortable mess room, a good new building. Since I’ve returned I sleep between sheets in a big bed.  Great! The O.C. and the other chaps are all good fellows and we get on famously.  Have not practiced French as much as I should like, but got a bit last week with my landlord who is a musical professor with poor digestion.  We are well supplied with reading stuff now and for sometime.  I attended lots of wounds last week; some pretty bad and got an insight into the routine of the Field Ambulance work.  Four of the men there were mentioned in dispatches and deserved to do so.  There was a padre with the A.O. S. whose leg was pulled tremendously.  He was a very conscientious chap with little sense of humour.  It was hard lines.  Spent most of the time looking for someone to console and the beggar would not be consoled.  One man would be a nonconformist, another was unconscious, another not quite well enough to take the strain.  Anyhow he was a brave chap and went into the trenches every day and made me a present off a pair of pyjamas (consecrated of course).  The Roman Catholics seem to be the most useful.  Their work is more definite as their sheep have to be consoled whether they like it or not.  The mainstay of our chaplains are funerals.  There the victim is anon-resister; there seems to be a peculiar code of etiquette with them.  The C. of E must never feel the spiritual pulse or look at the spiritual longing of the N.C. or the R.C. nor give him spiritual castor oil or spiritual ipecacuanha.  That would be awful!

 I am curious to know what Harold Watkins will do now.  I wonder whether he will be troubled with “cold feet”.  Fred Roberts has joined in some class or other (guns). Bob his brother is in the firing line.  I wonder what Robert Jones, Penllan has joined.    Private Manuel Wragg ‘s military career also should be instructive.  And entertaining.  Will send you another photo if I can find one.  I went to a concert of the Welsh guards on Saturday night.  Welsh airs and ‘Hen Wlad Fy Nhadiau’ etc etc.  They have done very well I am told.  And lost lots of officers and men.   We were attached to the Guards Division.

  Well. Cariad cynhesaf abtoch ych dwy ac at y teulu oll. (Warmest love to you both and the family).

Eich lwythr methodistardd a meluwel.


Easter Monday 1916

Dear Eirian

I was very glad to get your letter. I am still in an A.D.S. with another chap.  This the third one now.  We left the other place where I slept in a cellar went to another place for a week and came here yesterday.  The reason the changes being that the division are taking on another part of the line.  It is much nicer than being in the Headquarters of our Ambulance.  The Headman is a terror for making all manner of new rules and regulations for the young bloods who are unfortunate enough to be at the H.Q.  I hope I shall be kept here still longer when I shall tell him what a dangerous place it is.  As a result he hardly ever comes up and only stays 10 minutes or so.  The place we were in last week was pretty warm; one shell just skimmed over our roof and smashed up a big tree and our tennis lawn just behind and as the place was not sandbagged at all we should probably have sampled the golden harp (wearing a gas helmet) sooner than convenient.  We always carry our gas helmets here and a small knapsack slung on our shoulders.  We have to visit the regimental aid posts whenever we are in the A.D.S.. The last place is quiet as regards work but shelled a bit and not very protected. But quite intact after 18 months as the inference is that it may last another 18 months but some pieces have been dropping at times.  It is very interesting watching a ‘straff’. Tremendous noise!  Shrapnel bursting in the air.  I watched a machine gun being fired the other day in a straff.  Wonderful how rapid 600 a minute is but the machinery seemed complicated.  Haven’t been in the trenches yet.  I was going round the other morning with an M.O but he couldn’t come when I went up.  Dada will tell you where some of the people were last December.  I am about ¼ mile from there.  It is not very safe going about the roads at night as the machine guns are played on them and the country being so flat they can see us in the day.  Ask Dada to write and also the rest of you to write oftener.  Letters are awfully scarce recently and one does enjoy them. 

Exert   I was told to make myself and my men comfortable at once.  I sent them to billets not far away for which I made a humble request the following day!  I had no building materials. I sent my men to find some and they brought enough to make a dugout and then reported that they were to be arrested if they went to the dump again. That required careful consideration as it was out of my army area.  However in about three days material came and in two days more everyman was under cover in a beautiful dug out.  The O.C. came down and saw a street of houses where hither to there had merely been a track and he complemented me very highly. I threw off my tunic and dug  - that impressed the troops.  Being O.C. is not at all bad.  I paraded my detachments one day and told them home truths which had a great effect, best of all I made a sergeant work and felt pleased with himself for doing so.  Enough of this!  Selfpride is no commendation …You will understand that the time has not been with out its excitement.  Until today – for the last fortnight I was in charge of a detached section of two pieces, 40 men and one junior officer.  I was visited by one colonel, one brigadier and major general R.A. and I am pleased to tell you that I did that which is most important of all in the army – I answered all the questions addressed to me without hesitation.  I camouflaged two places so well that the colonel reported to the G.C. that they were not there!  The G.O.C. however to whom I showed them was frightfully bucked.  The brigadier in one of our discussions said: “Well you are an authority in these matters.” And I am not!! He was not sarcastic.  He was just giving in gracefully on a certain point.  They really were very nice.  I can gather all kinds of property, which does not belong to me.  I can build dugouts which delight the soul of an R.E.  You a see I was only sent out to an open field and told to dig a dugout. 

The Times  

February 3rd 1916

On Going into Action


Now the weak impulse and the blind desire

Give way at last to the all-conquering will

Love now must pause, and fancy cease, until

The soul has won that freedom born of fire

Sing, then, no songs upon the sweet-voiced lyre:

But choose some other instrument, whose shrill

Nerve-bracing notes my doubting heart shall fill

With new courage, that will never tire.

Sing me the dead men's glorious deeds again!

Tell how they suffered, died, but would not fail!

Stir me to action! Let me feel their pain.

This strength, this mystery: - that at the tale

I rise with such clear purpose in my brain

That even Hell’s own gates shall not prevail.


(Killed in action in France on January 24th 1916 )



Map taken from the book,    Somme by Lyn MacDonald

Raymond Jones was  killed on July 10th 1916 near Mametz Woods.






                           His Grave is at Carnoy  

                         Row T..Gr 30  



Part of letter about  Uncle Raymond. Dr Raymond Jones, following his death at the Battle of the Somme July, 10th 1916.  From his Batman to my grandfather, Major Edgar Jones.

  .....commenced at 4 A.M. on the 10th and it was not long before the wounded came pouring in. Your brother took charge of the stretcher-bearers and attended many cases.  After going across the open to within 20yards of the wood, where he fell within 20 yards of the wood, with bullet through the right lung and one through the left thigh.

  I bandaged him up and with help carried him to shelter of the wood, where he died in about 20 minutes.  We failed to carry the body from there until the following day, as there was such a large number of wounded.

He is buried in a British cemetery in a little village behind the line, the name of which you may soon learn.  There is one consolation the whole family may derive from his death and that is he gave his life for others nobly and fearlessly.  We all mourn his loss greatly, he was so kind and thoughtful to all of us especially myself as I had served him as a servant from the time we were in England.  Accept my sympathy in your great loss. 

I am your obedient servant.

Jas. R Jones  Pte 48819  


From Rev. James Evans, C.F.

129th F.A.

38th Division, B.E.F.


Dear Mr Jones,  

It is with profound sorrow I write to you this letter.  You will probably have heard from the War office that your brother, Lt Raymond Jones, R.A.M.C. was killed in action yesterday in the great battle.  He was caught by a machine gun while dressing the wounded in the thick of it.

I cannot express to you the sadness of all of his fellow officers as well as the men at this loss.    Today we laid him to rest in a British cemetery.  The assistant A.D.M.S. (Major Shearing), Col. Miles and Roberts and others attended.  I had the sad duty of officiate.  His grave is near to Mametz in the village of Carnoy and a cross will be erected …

  Further portion of the letter is lost.



  Part of letter about Uncle Raymond’s death.

Part is lost

“You might tell him (Major Edgar Jones) how popular his brother was with all ranks and how gallantly he met his death.

Our Stretcher bearers came into our advanced post with the news that hundreds of wounded ,serious cases were lying in the wood and could not be brought in for some time.  As soon as Jones heard this, at about 4.30.A.M., he filled his pockets with bandages and went to find them.  Over a small ridge and down to the edge of the wood across about 40 yards of open, in which it seemed impossible for anything to live.

He never found his goal, he was killed before he reached the wood.  I am going tomorrow by motor car to little wayside cemetery where we buried Jones, to stick up an oak cross, suitably inscribed on his grave:  

“Lieut. Raymond Jones, R.A.M.C.   

Formerly of Cardiff, Practising here."





Lieut. Raymond Jones RAMC






July 10




August 29th 1916 


                Dear Mrs Jones,

 I do not think that I ever had the pleasure of meeting you when I lived at Oswestry in the year 1909, but I knew lots of people there.  If you know Dr Beresford or Dr Cartwright they will tell you all about me, as I was their assistant for along time.

   I am writing to you because I was a great friend of your son Raymond.  We were in the same Field Ambulance, the 129th and I am in it still.  Raymond and I had many good days together and everybody liked him.  He was universally popular with officers and men and his death cast a gloom over the whole medical service of the division.

You know the story, of course, of how he came to be killed.  He was told there were a lot of wounded in a particularly dangerous place, so he set off with bandages and dressings to do what he could to help the poor wounded men, thus he got hit and I believe died very quickly afterwards.

It is very sad and I cannot tell you how I sympathise with you in your trouble.  There is some consolation, however, to think of the glorious Death, which he died.  Could here be a fine example of self-sacrifice?  A soldier goes forwards to kill or be killed – the doctor usually stays behind to dress the wounded who are brought back to him, but Raymond deliberately went forward to face death – that perchance he might be able to save a life – or to ease some tortured soldiers’ suffering. 

I saw him after he was killed and his face was quite peaceful and calm, as though he knew he had done his duty and was content to pay the terrible price.  I saw afterwards the cross which was the most beautiful cross I have ever seen out here – I have seen many alas!  How many!  Everyone that could get to his funeral went to it.  I regret that I could not go owing to most urgent work and everyone misses him, but no one misses him more than I do – for I have lost a kind friend who was indeed on of the heroes of England.

  You always have my deepest sympathy.

  Yours truly,

D.A.Taylor. Lieut. R.A,M.C.  








Cutting from local newspaper










An Englyn  by R. William Parry in ‘Yr Haf a Cherddi Eraill’


In Memoriam to a doctor,

 ‘Meddyg’ – Dr Raymond Jones, Llanrhaeadr yn Mochnant,

Gwendid mewn gofid gafodd ei ofal,

A’I Lafur tra galodd:

Yntau ei hun a hunodd

Yn yr man a’r modd.


Roughly translated as


‘He cared for the weak and troubled

as long as he was able:

He himself died in the same place

And in the same manner.’



Raymond's Grave at Carnoy

The inscription reads as follows


R.J. Jones

Royal Army Medical Corps

10th July 1916