McConnel, Merrick Hugh

Eldest son of William Houldsworth McConnel and Florence (nee Banister of Tadley, Basingstoke) of Stretton House, Alfreton, Derbyshire, he came to Winchester from Horris Hill. He was a House Prefect and for two years a member of Lords; he played in O.T.H. VI and in Association XI, won Steeplechase and was one of the best racquets players in the School. In 1902, he passed into Woolwich, where he maintained his reputation as an athlete, and in 1904 obtained his commission in the Royal Field Artillery.  For the next eight years he served in England and acted for some time as A.D.C. to Major General H.E. Belfield, General Officer Commanding at Woolwich, whose elder daughter he married in 1912.

He was with his battery in India when war broke out, and in October 1914, was ordered to France in command of an ammunition column. He served there continuously until his death, with the exception of two brief periods of ill-health, and was twice mentioned in Despatches. He was struck by a shell on September 13th 1917, while observing for his battery in an exposed position at Poperinghe near Ypres, and died in hospital the following day. McConnel is buried in Grave XIX.B.3 of the  Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery at Ypres.

All his life he was devoted to music; he was a good violinist as a boy and possessed a beautiful voice.

War: World War 1

  • Surname: McConnel
  • Forenames or initials: Merrick Hugh
  • House: F
  • Years in School: 1898-1902
  • Rank: Major
  • Regiment: Royal Field Artillery
  • Date of Birth: 6th November 1884
  • Date of Death: 14th September 1917
  • How Died: Died of Wounds
  • Location in War Cloister: Outer B2
  • Decoration: NA