Phillip Wiltshire was born
in Ealing in 1892, to Millicent and Samuel Wiltshire. During his
childhood, they lived at 7 Venetia Road in Ealing. In his teens,
he lived with and worked for an uncle in Hartley Whitney,
|Phillip in Gibraltar, soon
after he joined up at the age of 16.
||Phillip with some of his
ship-mates above the town of Split, in the Balkans.
||Phillip with his new baby
daughter Joyce, in 1919.
In 1909 Phillip 'ran away'
and joined the Navy as a boy seaman. He took part in the Battle
of Dogger Bank on the destroyer H.M.S. Lennox, and spent the
remainder of the war in the Persian Gulf. His other ships
included H.M.S. Repulse and H.M.S Royal Oak. His home base was
Chatham, known as H.M.S. Pembrokeshire. He retired from the Navy
in 1931. When war broke out again in 1939, he was called up at
the age of 47, and sent to sea on the anti-submarine trawler
"Peter Hendricks" as a gunnery instructor. However the
stress of going to sea in wartime again was too much for a man of
his age. We might speculate that this was aggrevated by an
incident on 19th July 1941 in which the "Peter Hendricks"
rammed and sunk one of our own submarines with the loss of 22
lives, though it is not known if Phillip was on board at the time.
After a spell in the naval hospital at Chatham he was given a
medical discharge, but never fully recovered.
|HMS Lennox, on which
Phillip served in 1915.
||HMS Repulse, photographed
in 1916 or 1917.
|May and Phillip pose in a
photographer's studio in Ealing, about 1923.
||Phillip Wiltshire aged
In 1912 he met May
Simpson, and they married in 1914. They lived with his parents at
74 The Grove, Ealing while he was in the navy. On his release
from the navy they decided to find a place of their own, and in
about 1933 moved along the road to 46 The Grove. A result of this
was that his mother sold her house at 74 The Grove and moved to
Chinnor with Tommy Beard.
In 1952 Phillip and May
moved to Little Scotlands Cottage, West Chiltington, Sussex,
where they were still living when he died. The cottage has now (2002)
been replaced with a modern house, but the garden retains some of
its original character, including part of the box hedge seen in
the picture below.
||Little Scotlands, West
Phillip Wiltshire died in
1968 while visiting his daughter and son-in-law in Norfolk.