Sunday, 25 August 2013

Leslie Honeywill...submarines....and an auction! ;-)

Leslie Honeywill was born in 1899 to parents John and Bessie Honeywill.

Bessie was the daughter of James and Mary Gidley... and before she was a Gidley,

Mary was a Smerdon and sister to Bessie Smerdon, who was my great grandmother.

So, that made Leslie something like my third cousin once removed! (I think!)

And now we move on 16 years…

In 1915, Leslie Honeywill said goodbye to his days at Newton Abbot Grammar School

 (the same school which I attended many years later)  and he headed to Devonport,

 to become a boy artificer in the  Royal Navy. Thus began, for him, a career as a

 submariner; a career about which he wrote many diaries  and manuscripts. 

Moving on many more years…

I was introduced to Leslie not long after I was born! 

Not that I remember a thing about it!

Leslie was chosen to be my Godfather and from what I remember of him,

I know that my parents made  the very best choice.  When I was a little older,

I remember him as being a very softly spoken, kind and  unassuming man;

one of life’s gentlemen. I didn’t see him often but he was one of those people who 

would have a very calming effect on you and you couldn’t help but be drawn

to his gentleness.  Leslie  never married; he had no children.

Sadly, Leslie passed away when I lived away from Devon, in 1978.

However, some of his diaries and writing became the property of my dad

 and these only surfaced recently, when my mum was sorting out my dad’s room.

Not really knowing what to do with Leslie's work, but knowing that they ought

 not be thrown away, my mum enlisted the help of a local antiques expert.

The rest is here:

Unfortunately, I can't attend the auction but I am sure that the diary and books will

be greatly sought after by those people who are interested in the history of submarines.

I would like to think that a very good home is found for Leslie's work.

And I'll be interested, of course, to see what sort of coverage

 is given on Antiques Road Trip!


KC'sCourt! said...

What lovely family history. I am just researching our family tree(s) for when the grandchildren are older so they know who they are. It is amazing what you find.
Julie xxxxxxxxx

Nich said...

A fascinating piece of family history, I hope the pieces go to a good home. I can't wait to delve more into Grandad's side of the family ;-)