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John William Mavin (1894-1916)

Coal miner from Kelloe served as Able Seaman in the Navy and was lost at the Battle of Jutland

John William Mavin was born in 1894 and was one of nine children. His father was Thomas Arthur Mavin (1852-1920) who was born in Durham and worked as a furnace stoker. His mother was Anna Mavin nee Johnston (1854-1934) who was originally from Ireland.

Prior to John’s birth, the family were living at New Row in Kelloe. By 1901, they had moved to Newcastle-upon-Tyne and lived in 27 Hull Street, Elswick. In 1911, John was living with his parents in 220 School Street, Langley Moor and working as a coal miner at Littleburn Colliery.

John joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (RNVR) Tyneside Division in 1914. His rank was Able Seaman and his service number was TZ4040. Ships that he served on included HMS Cochrane and HMS Black Prince both of which took part in the Battle of Jutland on 31 May 1916.

It appears that John was transferred from the Cochrane to the Black Prince at some time prior to the battle. This had unfortunate consequences for him because while HMS Cochrane took part in the battle, the ship remained unengaged throughout. The Black Prince on the other hand was hit by at least twelve heavy shells and several smaller ones, sinking within 15 minutes. There were no survivors from Black Prince’s crew, all 857 being killed.

John died on Black Prince as a result of enemy action and his body was not recovered for burial. He is honoured on the Chatham Naval Memorial and on two memorials in Meadowfield.

Civil Parish: Kelloe

Birth date: 10-Jan-1894

Death date: 31-May-1916

Armed force/civilian: Navy

Residence: New Row, Kelloe (1894 birthplace)
27 Hull Street, Elswick, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland (1901 census)
220 School Street, Langley Moor (1911 census)

Employment: Coal miner – putter (1911 census)

Family: Parents: Thomas Arthur Mavin (1852-1920), Anna Mavin nee Johnston (1854-1934)
Siblings: Isabella Mavin, Agnes Mavin, Robert Mavin, Kennedy Mavin, Thomas Arthur Mavin, Mary E Mavin, Jane A Mavin, Harle Mavin

Military service:

Able Seaman
HMS Cochrane
HMS Black Prince

Medal(s): Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal

Memorial(s): Chatham Naval Memorial
Meadowfield, Plaque 1914-18, British Legion
Meadowfield, Chancel Screen, Church of St John the Evangelist

Gender: Male

Contributed by David D, Stanley, Co Durham