CWG: Petty Officer Stoker James Adams

Petty Office Stoker James Adams

James Adams was born in June 1883, son of Robert and Eliza Adams from Bridgwater in Somerset. Robert was an agricultural labourer; James was one of seven children.

James was keen to get out and see the world. In November 1905 – aged just 12 years old – he enlisted in the Royal Navy as a stoker. After training in Devonport, Plymouth, Stoker Adams served on a number of different vessels, including HMS Victorious, Ramillies, Amphitrite, Monmouth, Andromeda and Halcyon.

By the time war broke out, James has been promoted to Leading Stoker, and was assigned to HMS Cornwall. This was an armoured cruiser that was involved in the Battle of the Falklands in December 1914.

Promoted to Stoker Petty Officer in October 1915, James continued to serve on HMS Cornwall until he was transferred to the brand new ship, HMS Valkyrie. The vessel was involved in offensive sweeps and convoy escorts based out of Harwich.

On 22nd December 1917, the Valkyrie was part of the escort for a convoy travelling to the Netherlands, when she struck a mine. In total, nineteen men were killed, twelve instantly; this included Stoker Petty Officer Adams. He was 34 years old.

James Adams lies at rest in the Wembdon Road Cemetery in his home town or Bridgwater.


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