Chatteris WW1 Soldier Percival Kent Nix, Chatteris Remembers Biography
Percival Kent Nix HMS Bulwark Died 26-11-1914 Percival Kent Nix, son of John and Caroline Nix was born on 28 December 1869 at “The Limes”, Chatteris. In 1871 he was living at “Old Halves” in Chatteris and by 1881 had moved to Kimbolton. In 1888 he joined Pembroke College, Cambridge after having attended Cheltenham College. In 1891 he appeared on the census as living in Chatteris, at “Holywood” although he was listed as being an Undergraduate at Cambridge University. In 1896 he gained an MB and BChir and was a surgeon at The London Hospital. He joined the military and became a staff surgeon in 1910. !n 1911 he was listed as being on the ship “Temeraine”, he was listed as being single. By 1914 Percival was Fleet Surgeon on the HMS Bulwark. At the outbreak of WW1 the HMS Bulwark was conducting patrols in the English Channel. On 14th November 1914 the ship transferred to Sheerness to guard against a possible German invasion. On 26 November a massive internal explosion ripped the ship apart. Of the 750 men on board only 14 sailors survived. The explosion is thought to have occurred as a large quantity of ammunition had been stored alongside the boiler room. It is thought that cordite charges overheated and possibly that one of the shells had been damaged causing it to become “live”, resulting in the massive explosion in which Percival died. Percival was cremated on 2nd December 1914 at Golders Green, London. A memorial plaque was unveiled in Somersham Church in November 1915 and the church was re-floored and re-seated in his memory. In 1915, Percival’s will and probate record reads: “NIX Percival Kent of The Bungalow, 11 Alexandria Road, Weymouth, Dorsetshire died 26 November 1914 on HMS Bulwark. Probate London 4 February to John Stanley Nix ,Solicitor and Milicent Mary Nix, Spinster Effects £10169 7s 10d. Resworn £10671 2s 9d”. His effects were left to his brother and sister. Chatteris Remembers File Contains: • CWGC certificate • Ancestry family tree information, 1911, 1891 census • Ancestry – Cambridge University Alumni, Wills and Probate • Information on HMS Bulwark • Newspaper Reports – Cambs Times, 12 Nov 1915, picture of memorial tablet, photograph funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund
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