Read, Arnold Wyndham

He was the second son of Arnold Holcombe Read (I1893-98) of Englefield Green.   His mother, Winifred McBryde Read, was the daughter of Thomas Orr. He was the brother of Holcombe D. Read (C1923-28) and Tom Holcombe Read (C1932- 37), and came from Copthorne to Southgate Hill in May 1928. He was a useful cricketer, but rackets was his game and he represented the school, winning the Open Amateur Handicap at Princes in 1936. On leaving Winchester he entered his father’s firm of stockbrokers, Read & Brigsttock. On March 12th 1938 he married Ursula Somerville Scott, the sister of his Winchester contemporary, Hilary Somerville Scott DSO (C1928-1933), who also served alongside Read in the war. Ursula’s parents, Brigadier and Mrs. R.S. Scott, lived at Water Hall, Ifield, Crawley, Sussex.

Read joined up soon after war broke out, and gained a commission in the Inns of Court Regiment. By 1944 he had attained the rank of Major, and went with his regiment to Normandy in command of ‘B’ Squadron. From July 1944 the Inns of Court Regiment acted as a reconnaissance unit for British and Canadian forces, not being part of any specific division but tasked as needed.   On 22nd August 1944 the war diary records  “Squadron moved south from St. Martin des Besacres to recce area east of Catheolles, but fierce enemy opposition prevented completion of move. Squadron Leader (Major A.W. Read) was killed by mortar as the Squadron commenced to cross river at last mentioned place. River crossed and recce continued of area Beaulieu-Prestes-Estay (7138).”

Aged thirty when he died, Read lies in grave XIII.G.9 of the St. Charles de Percy War Cemetery. He was posthumously mentioned in despatches on March 22nd 1945.


War: World War 2

  • Surname: Read
  • Forenames or initials: Arnold Wyndham
  • House: C
  • Years in School: 1928-1933
  • Rank: Major
  • Regiment: Inns of Court Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps
  • Date of Birth: 20th June 1914
  • Date of Death: 2nd August 1944
  • How Died: Killed in Action
  • Location in War Cloister: Inner F2
  • Decoration: NA
  • Burial Site: St Charles de Percy War Cemetery: Grave XIII.G.9